Embrace a Veteran: VFW Post 10804 members take on mission to expand, help others

Embrace a Veteran: VFW Post 10804 members take on mission to expand, help others

HORRY COUNTY, SC (WMBF) - They are a group of three who served in the Army and are proud members of the VFW Post 10804 in Little River, hoping to spread the word to others about how they can help.

"Oh my, there's nothing like it once you're in the air, but then you got to get ready to land and then that's like jumping off the top of a boxcar," said Jack Schonely, a Korean War veteran who trained with the 82nd Airborne Division. "You've got to learn how to land so you don't hurt yourself and it makes you feel special that I can do this. I wanted to see if I could and I found out I could, so a great experience."

Schonely spent one of his nearly three years in Korea as the war was ending in 1954.

"I started out with the Second Infantry Division, who was then on line at the DE military zone. We watched them, they watched us," he said. "You made a lot of friends for life and you would have done most anything for them, as they would have done for you. It was a short part of a total life. I am almost 87 now, so this gets to be a long, long time ago, but it's a part of your life you'll never forget."

"I went to the Citadel on a football scholarship," said Vietnam veteran Dan Farley, who graduated from school and became a second lieutenant in the Army's field artillery, loading and firing howitzers.

Farley's fight in Vietnam lasted a year in 1968, a year of loss he'll never forget.

"An operating base called DAK TO, which was near Cambodia, Laos and Vietnam, and we were taking incoming and I lost people under me," Farley said. "That was the worst day of my life. You become pretty close to them. In Vietnam, people rotated every month, but you get to know them. You know, it hurts. They're on the wall in Washington and it hurts to go see the wall."

"I don't like to say dodged combat, but in 1971 I was an air defense artillery officer out of ROTC, out of University of Scranton in Pennsylvania," said Army veteran and VFW POST 10804 Commander Nick Camera.

Camera has 21 years of active service in the military, with three overseas tours. However, his primary mission now is to grow the post.

Schonely and Farley couldn't agree more with the mission.

"We need to remind these young guys coming home from Iraq, Afghanistan that they should look into joining Veterans of Foreign Wars," said Schonely.

"I believe the number is about 18 percent of our Armed Forces today are women. We need more women in the Veterans of Foreign Wars and we need more women in the American Legion," said Farley.

It's a mission of support, they'll continually fight to help others.

Jack Schonely's 87th birthday is August 1st, so we wish him a happy one.

For more information about their post, click here.

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