History of Veteran of Foreign Wars
The VFW traces its roots back to 1899 when veterans of the Spanish-American War
(1898) and the Philippine Insurrection (1899-1902) founded local
organizations to secure rights and benefits for their service: Many
arrived home wounded or sick. There was no medical care or veterans'
pension for them, and they were left to care for themselves. In their misery, some of these veterans banded together and formed
organizations with what would become known as the Veterans of Foreign
Wars of the United States. After chapters were formed in Ohio, Colorado
and Pennsylvania, the movement quickly gained momentum. By 1915,
membership grew to 5,000; by 1936, membership was almost 200,000.
Since then, the VFW's voice had been instrumental in establishing
the Veterans Administration, creating a GI bill for the 20th century,
the development of the national cemetery system and the fight for
compensation for Vietnam vets exposed to Agent Orange and for veterans
diagnosed with Gulf War Syndrome. In 2008, VFW won a long-fought victory
with the passing of a GI Bill for the 21st Century, giving expanded
educational benefits to America's active-duty service members, and
members of the Guard and Reserves, fighting in Iraq and Afghanistan. The VFW also has fought for improving VA medical centers services for women veterans. Besides helping fund the creation of the Vietnam, Korean War, World
War II and Women in Military Service memorials, the VFW in 2005 became
the first veterans' organization to contribute to building the new
Disabled Veterans for Life Memorial, which opened in November 2010. Annually, nearly 2 million members of the VFW and its
Auxiliaries contribute more than 8.6 million hours of volunteerism in
the community, including participation in Make A Difference Day and
National Volunteer Week. From providing over $3 million in college scholarships and savings
bonds to students every year, to encouraging elevation of the Department
of Veterans Affairs to the president's cabinet, the VFW is there.
The History of JAYNE-LATTIN Post 2913
It all began with 120 members on October 13th, 1945, at the Patchogue Hotel, On January 13, 1946, the Charter Membership was closed with breaking membership of 375, Membership broke the 400 mark on February 3, 1946, thus becoming one of the largest VFW posts in the United States. On March 9, 1946, the Auxiliary was instituted at Patchogue Hotel with 40 Charter Members. Between 1945 and 1949, VFW 2913 post meetings were held at various locations in the Village of Patchogue, NY. It was in March 1949 that ground was broken for the new building on Edwards Street in the Village of Patchogue.
In November 1949, the new Post was completed, and the members officially moved in. Since the post was formed its post members and the Auxiliary have been involved in the community, with various programs in the local schools, Air Force ROTC awards, Local members of Fire Department, EMT Department and County Police Department member of the year awards, attend annual parades, and support our Military service men and women on active duty with care boxes while deployed. Over the last couple of years, the post has continued its support to veterans and the local community with art programs, giving support to food pantries, building relationships with Student Veterans of America, Eagle Scout Awards, housing Harmony Cafe and a startup church. The post also takes part in several community events like Alive After Five, the Suffolk County Marathon and Freedom Fest. The name of the post was derived from the first fallen from Patchogue, Long Island, New York. Kenneth Jayne and Bleecker Lattin who were killed in action at Pearl Harbor on December 7th, 1941, on board the U.S. ships Arizona and Oklahoma.
Bleecker Lattin enlisted in the Navy on Feb. 13, 1940, shortly after leaving Patchogue, N.Y., high school in his senior year. Bleecker Lattin was a radioman and petty officer 3rd class on the USS Arizona when he was killed in the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor, Dec. 7, 1941. Mr. Lattin was born Oct. 9, 1921, with the last name of Arrighi but later took the surname of his stepfather, Howard Lattin.
On December 7, 1941, the battleship USS Oklahoma was moored at Ford Island, Pearl Harbor when attacked by Japanese forces. After multiple torpedo hits, the USS Oklahoma capsized. F3C Jayne was one of 429 sailors and Marines lost on that day. His remains were among 393 Pearl Harbor casualties which were unidentifiable and buried at the National Memorial Cemetery of the Pacific as Unknowns. In 2015, the Department of Defense authorized the disinterment of Unknowns of the USS Oklahoma buried at the cemetery. By use of modern-day forensic science, F3C Jayne's remains were identified. 80 years later, on December 4, 2021, F3C Jayne was finally brought to his final resting place here at Cedar Grove Cemetery in Patchogue, NY.