American Legion Post 1 hosts banquet recognizing Boys, Girls State attendees
The Fred H. Sexton American Legion Post 1 held its annual Boys/Girls State banquet on Oct. 13. The participants had attended a week-long program at Anderson University where they learned about our political system, government operations and procedures. They were divided into cities and operated their governments – running for office, writing bills, presenting bills to their peers and competing in various sports.
These activities taught them about team work, leadership and helped them to network and make lasting friends. Each student addressed the Legionnaires sharing their thoughts and talking about what they learned and how the experience changed their lives. They thanked the Legion and their schools for offering them this opportunity. Senator Hugh Leatherman, a long time Legion supporter, was the guest speaker.
He encouraged the students to use their experience to help them become the leaders of the future. He also thanked the Legion for sponsoring the Boys/Girls State Program. The senator then presented Post Commander Bethea and Treasurer Don Handley with a check for $10,000 to assist the post with building repairs. The membership is very grateful for this gift that will allow badly needed repair work to begin, said Post Adjutant Ken Curran.
Post1 Auxiliary President Vicki Gimla and S.C. Dept. President Terasia Hays introduced Girls State participant Sara Balys Graham to the gathering. Sarah is a Johnsonville High School student. She delivered a speech on her Girls State experience. All of the Florence public high schools, along with Trinity-Byrnes Collegiate, Johnsonville, The Kings Academy and the Home Education Association (home school) participated in the Legion program.