Post 9892 History

COL B. J. Smith Post 9892

"Post 9892 History"

Chartered: June 7 1990

Full Name of Post: Colonel B. J. Smith Post 9892

Original Location: Baguio City, Philippines

Moved: Baguio City to Poro Point, La Union April 14, 1992. Poro Point to Bauang, La Union Nov 19, 1995

New Location: Paringao, Bauang, La Union, Philippines

Commander-in-Chief: Walter G. Hogan


1990-92 Antoni Pogozelski 2000-01 Marvin Kirsh
1992-93 Rhett Weber 2001-02 Tim Aukshun
1993-94 Emory Russell 2002-03 Emory Russell
1994-95 Dave Ransom 2003-06 Arthur Gaspard
1995-96 Emory Russell 2006-07 Cesar Noble
1996-97 Roger Limle 2006-07 Cesar Noble
1997-99 David Hillhouse 2007-08 Emory Russell
1999-00 Tim Aukshun 2008-09 Frank Hilliard


Col. B.J. Smith, VFW Post 9892


In 1937 B.J. Smith commonly known only as “BJ” from Dumas, Texas, enlisted in the military. Thus began a military career which was to span 32 years. This young man would have a far reaching effect on the lives of many. “BJ” rose to the rank of Staff Sergeant in four years as an instructor of radio at Scott Field, Illinois. He was selected for pilot training and commissioned as a pilot in 1941. He saw wartime service in the Far East/Pacific area until 1950.Because of his extensive experience in the communication field, “BJ” was reassigned to Scott Field. Achieving the rank of Colonel his last military assignment was Commander, Southeast Asia Communication Region, Clark AB, Philippines.Col. B.J. Smith retired from active duty in 1970. In 1978 he returned to the Philippines to live. “BJ” founded the Retiree Activities Program at Camp John Hay and served as its first director from 1979 to 1985. He brought together over 200 retirees living in the Baguio, Philippines area. In 1985 the U.S. Retirees lost a good man, Col. B.J. Smith passed away. He touched the hearts of many with his simple philosophy: “Continuous service to your fellow man is its own reward”.


The actual conception of a Veteran of Foreign Wars Post actually began in 1989 within the hearts of 26 veterans who felt a fraternal need to forge the group into a viable organization serving the needs of all comrades. Comrade Pogozelski provided the impetus and these 26 men instituted VFW Post 9892 and named it after Col. B.J. Smith when it was formed on June 7, 1990 in Baguio City, Philippines.


The founding members of VFW Post 9892 were:

Antoni Pogozelski, Ric Baird, David Strasser, Ben Yabut, Frank Hillard, Art Gaspard, Dick Smith, Robbie Robinson, Ralph Knowles, Horace Crandell, Ralph Booher, Harold Vierra, Dean Brittain, Harold Wolf, Charles White, Ed Kelly, Ken Prettyman, Ward Harden, John Belik, Ron Woodson, Larry Boudreaux, Bob Bennet, Gorden Todd, Ron Groscost, Leroy Cook, and Noel Kramer.

OFFICERS 1990-1991

R.W. Joyce, Commander of VFW Post 9723 called the Jun 7, 1990 meeting to order. Members and guests were introduced and members were sworn in. Col. B.J. Smith, Post 9892 then began. Nominations for officers were taken. Officers elected: Commander -Hughes, Quartermaster-Molina. On July 10, 1990, the following officers were elected and sworn in.Senior Vice Commander-Carter; Jr. Vice Commander-DeJesus; Adjutant-Hillard; Advocate-Norton; Chaplain-Belik; Surgeon-Brittain; Trustee 3-White; Trustee 2-Baker; Trustee 1-Tickacek.



The terrible earthquake in Jul 1990, caused several members to move to the US or to the lowlands of La Union. No meeting or records were kept during the months following. In late 1990, the members remaining reorganized and regrouped. The next major event was the election of officers for 1991-1992.


Commander-Pogozelski; Sr. Vice-Gray; Jr. Vice-Yabut; Quartermaster and Adjutant-Hemminger; Advocate-Norton; Chaplain-Belik; Surgeon-Harlan; Trustee 3-Tichacek; Trustee 2-Crandall; Trustee 1-Groscost

From the beginning the VFW Post 9892 meetings were held at Camp John Hay, but with the base closure in 1991, the meetings were moved to the Manila Café in downtown Baguio City. Due to the loss of several members, recruiting took place in San Fernando, La Union near Wallace Air Station. Several members were signed up. Meetings were decided to be alternated between Baguio City and the Sea Breeze Restaurant in La Union. In March 1992 the members voted to have future meetings at Poro Point, La Union.Art Gaspard moved that periodically meetings would be held in Baguio for sentimental reasons. Comrade Gray seconded and it passed.


On April 14, 1992, the VFW Post 9892 offically moved to Poro Point, San Fernando, La Union. The Post canteen was officially opened on 2nd Street in Poro Point in a renovated building owned by Comrade Jackie Staggs.


Election of officers was held in the newly christened Post canteen. Results were: Commander-Rhett Weber; Sr. Vice- Art Gaspard; Jr. Vice-Papa Tony Jacisin; Quartermaster-Phil Coey; Advocate-Ralph Begien; Chaplain-Dari Camp; Surgeon-Ken Prettyman; Trustee 3-Dave Ransom; Trustee 2-Reese Crandall; Trustee 1-John Petty.On May 30, 1992, a picnic was held at the Sea Breeze Resort which was the ground work of reinstating the “Chili Cook off”, held for many years on bases in the Philippines. Miss Chili Pepper contest was added for spice and scheduled to be held on 4th of July. Community activities sponsored were: 1. Bingo, originally held at Sea Breeze now held in Post Canteen. 2. Steak Night once a month. 3. A day on the Beach once a month. 4. Hospital visits to Post members and families in distress. 5. Support Expates Association, providing monies for education of children in the local area. 6. Providing food stuffs for the Baccuit Day Care Center. 7. Sponsoring a Christmas party to include gifts for the orphanage. In 1993 the Expats Association was a co-host.Membership increased to 33. Later we lost one when Paul Blenis passed away from cancer.


Election results were: Commander-Emory Russell; Sr. Vice/Service Officer-Norm Gonda; Jr. Vice-McCoy; Quartermaster-Tanner; Advocate-Begien; Chaplain-Camp; Surgeon-Norrie; Trustee 3-Pogo; Trustee 2-Petty; Trustee 1-Ransom. Also the following were elected for District VII: District Commander-Weber; District Quartermaster-Ransom; District Judge Advocate-Russell; District Adjutant Limle was also appointed. After McCoy passed away in on Mar 8, Ralph Doram was elected Jr Vice. After Sr Vice Gonda passed away Nov 1993, Jr Vice Doram moved up to Sr Vice. Gaspard was elected Jr Vice. Trustee 2 Petty resigned to accept Adjutant and was appointed to House committee. The new Trustee 2 was filled by Stroughton.The Post Charter was draped four times in 1994. Jan 27, Papa Tony Jacisin; Feb 8, Rice Tanner; March 8, Gerald McCoy; and again on April 28, James G. Marter. Despite these periods of mourning, the Post ended with 71 members. Average Post income is P14,000 monthly with Post assets at P 260,000. A new covered porch area was built on the Poro Point 2nd Street canteen. In addition a Post library was built.


Election results were: Commander-Dave Ransom; Sr. Vice-Stoughton; Jr. Vice-Gaspard; Quartermaster-Roger Limle; Advocate-Shaw; Chaplain-Jordon; Surgeon-Whitehead; Trustee 3-Forseth; Trustee 2-Openhoof; Trustee 1-Wallworth.Several memorials were held on Memorial day these years. Also Bingo went well and several Community projects in the Bauang, La Union/San Fernando, La Union were held.


Election results were: Commander-Russell; Sr. Vice-Limle; Jr. Vice-Ralph Begien; Quartermaster-Sidley; Advocate-Whitehead; Chaplain-Hank Golightly; Surgeon-Dutch Marynen; Trustee 3-Groscot; Trustee 2-Forseth; Trustee 1- Hank Openhoof.The Post home was moved to Paringao, Bauang, La Union on Nov 19, 1995. The new location proved wise as the canteen enjoyed new life. Bingo continues to proper in this larger location.Volunteer Canteen Manager John Peddy resigned and Jan Jandl was selected from those who applied for the paid position. Air-conditioning was put in due to the generosity of Comrade Russell loaning the Post the money. Charter was drapedin Nov 1995 for Robert Haskell. Membership increased to near 100.


Elected officers were: Commander- Roger Limle; Sr. Vice- Tom Morrison; Jr. Vice-Dave Hillhouse; Quartermaster-Dave Ransom; Chaplain-Hank Golightly; Surgeon-Dutch Marynen; Advocate-Ralph Begien; Trustee 3-Groscot; Trustee 2-Forseth; Trustee 1-Hank Openhoof. In 1996, the following District VII Officers were installed: Chief of Staff-Art Gaspard; Buddy Poppy Chairman-Wallworth; Inspector- Tom Morrison. July fourth celebrations was held at Post Canteen and 80 members and guests attended. 1996 Commander Russell awarded plaques to Mike Kelly for his support and participation in Post activities. Col. (RET) Rene V. Certeza for his devoted support as well.Using Bingo money, the Post had given $8,761 to community projects from Nov 1995 through Jan 1997. The Christmas party for the orphanage was a great success held at Comrade Doherty house. Comrade Corky Roberts provided the balloon shaping.Santa Doherty and Corky visited 16 Barangay day care centers. 1,600 children benefited from their visits. Highlight of the year is the Annual VFW Chili Cook Off.26 teams took part in a day of festivities. This event is now held in October to get more favorable weather. . Post membership is at 118. All of these Life Members.


Elected Officers were:Commander- Dave Hillhouse; Sr Vice-Tom Meixel; Jr Vice-Tim Aukshun; Quartermaster- Marvin Kirsch; Chaplain- Hank Golightly; Advocate-John Neilsen; Surgeon-Banana; Trustee 1- Art Gaspard; Trustee 2-Frank Hillard; Trustee 3-Tom Morrison. VFW Post 9892 paid tuition for three students. Conducted memorial day ceremonies at several cemeteries. The following individuals were recognized for assistance during the year. Bill Forgan, Christian Simon, Ken Hodges, Hank Golightly, David Guard, Thomas Sidley, Gloria Salinas, Emory Russell, Gemma Truman, Ralph Begien III, Emily Limle, Harry and Agnes Nichols. We hosted the Department Convention in June 1997 which was a very good success. Membership was at 131 but dropped to 126 due to deaths and transfers.


Elected Officers were: Commander-Dave Hillhouse; Sr Vice-Emory Russell; Jr Vice-Tim Aukshun; Quartermaster-Roger Limle; Chaplain- Hank Golightly; Advocate-Woffenden; Surgeon-Bob Upton; Trustee 3-Mike Nicely; Trustee 2-Tom Morrison; Trustee 1-Frank Hillard. Chairman of the house committee was Marvin Kirsch.1998 saw a new Canteen manager named: Bob Tuttle. Bob immediately improved the income of the canteen. The Chili Cook Off was another big hit with 25 teams registered. Although some did not show do to a typhoon which hit the day prior to the cook off, the weather during the affair was good. The community Actions Program donated college tuition, clothes, medicine, a well, food stuffs and assistance to a broken leg victim. All total over 10,000 pesos were donated to charity in this year.Membership grew to 135 thanks to recruiting from Emory Russell and Rhett weber.

1999 – 2000

Commander- Emory Russell/Tim Aukshun, Senior Vice- Tim Aukshun, Junior Vice- Marvin Kirsch, QM- Roger Limle, Surgeon-Robert Upon, Chaplain- Art Gaspard Advocate- Philip Woffenden, Trustee 1- Tom Morrison, Trustee 2- Mike Murphy, Trustee 3- Frank Hilliard IV Adjutant- Roger Limle. Membership at 137 as Nov 1999.

After one month Commander Russell, being the Department Commander as well, resigned to focus on his Department duties and Tim Aukshun became Commander. Marvin Kirsch then moved to Senior vice and Robert Upton was elected as Junior Vice.

Officers participated in all District VII meetings as well as the Subic beach bash, Baguio fun day and Angeles Bar B Q. Memorial at Camp O’Donnell was attended by commander Aukshun. The post assisted in the ANZAC Day remembrance at Coconut Grove in Bauang following the District Convention. The Annual Post 9892 Chili Cook off continued to be a hit and money maker for the post. We also conducted the annual Orphanage Christmas party. Awards were won from the Department for our Community Projects.

Sept 1999: Ignacio Dela Cuesta and Donato Herrera passed away.
Dec 1999: Jackie Staggs passed away.

2000 – 2001

Commander-Marvin Kirsch, Senior Vice-Robert Upton, Junior Vice-Simon Marynen, QM- Frank Hilliard IV, Membership at 141 as of May 2001

May 2000: William Myers passed away.
June 2001: Ralph Begien III passed away.

2001 – 2002

Commander- Tim Aukshun, Senior Vice-Dave Ransom, Junior Vice-, Mike Kelley, QM- Herman “Jan” Jaindl, Adjutant- Frank Hilliard, Life membership 154 as of march 2002

Memorial day was conducted at 5 cemeteries. Officers and members attended the other four posts fun day, beach bash and Bar B Q.Commander Aukshun attended the Veterans Affairs luncheon at the US Ambassadors residence for the incoming VA Director. The annual chili cook off was a great success and the Children’s Orphanage Christmas party was enjoyed by 35 students and staff.

Oct 2001: Ralph Knowles passed away

2002 – 2003

Commander- Emory Russell, Senior Vice- David Ransom, Junior Vice- J. C. Folkner, QM- Don McDaniel, Adjutant-Roger Limle, Surgeon-Robert Upton, Chaplain-Tom Morison, Advocate- Tom Roland, Trustee 1- John Mesaros, Trustee 2- Art Gaspard, Trustee 3-Roger Limle . Membership 154 as of March 2003.

All district meeting were attended by our members and we also assist in the annual ANZAC Day yearly after the District Convention. Our special projects were outstanding again and the 32 kids and staff had a great time at the orphanage Christmas annual party.

2003 – 2004

Commander-Arthur Gaspard, Senior Vice- Dave Ransom, Junior Vice-J. C Folkner, QM-Rey Vergara, Adjutant-Emory Russell, Surgeon-Cesar Noble, Chaplain-Thomas Morrison, Advocate-Walter Gorr, Trustee 1-John Mesaro, Trustee 2-Bob Tuttle, Trustee 3-Tim Aukshun

Feb 2004: John Gillen passed away.
April 2004: Howard Seaboldt passed away.
Jun 2004: J.C. Folkner passed away.

2004 – 2005

Commander-Art Gaspard, Senior Vice-Emory Russell, Junior Vice-Cesar Noble, QM- Dave Ransom, Adjutant- Emory Russell, Surgeon- Mike Kelley, Chaplain- Thomas Morrison, Advocate-Walter Gorr, Trustee 1-Ben Domondon, Trustee 2-Rhettt Webber, Trustee 3-Rey Vergara.Membership at 175 as of July 2004.

April 2005 the QM Dave Ransom trained Stella Wilman as assistant QM.Officers attended all district meeting and Comrade Rhett Webber represented our post at the Siapan Department convention. Memorial Day and Veterans Day were recognized as well as all four posts fun days. The annual chili cook off earned well needed money and much was spent on the community projects. The children’s annual orphanage part was well attended.

Aug 2004: Richard Gilbert passed away.
Sept 2004: Herman Jaindl passed away.
Nov 2004: Jimmy Holt and Thomas Rowland passed away
Jan 2005: Wendel (Corky) Roberts and David Hillhouse passed away.

2005 – 2006

Commander-Art Gaspard, Senior Vice- Cesar Noble, Junior Vice- Frank Hilliard IV, QM- Estela Wileman/Bob Looker, Adjutant- Russell Emory, Surgeon- Dave Pound, Chaplain- Mike Kelley, Advocate: Bob Looker, Trustee 1-Rhettt Webber, Trustee 2-Violeto Batac, Trustee 3-Dave Ransom,

All district meetings we attended by members of our posts. The Chili Cook off and ANZAC day as well as Memorial Day at the cemeteries was conducted. Children’s OrphanageChristmas party was conducted and all had great time eating hot dogs and spaghetti. Dave Ransom, Frank Hilliard IV, and Rhett Webber attended the Department Convention in Bangkok, Thailand, where our post received several awards. Nov 2005 Mike Kelley was replaced as Chaplain by Thomas Morrison.

Jan 2006 Bob Looker was appointed assistant QM to learn the job. Soon after began a very sad moment in the history of Post 9892. We found out the QM Estela Wileman had stolen $8,000 to $ 10,000 from the post. She was relieved and Bob Looker was appointed QM pro tempore. An intensive audit was conducted by Roger Limle and Dave Ranson to complete the bond report requirements. Charges were filed by the commander and part of this money will be refunded from the Bonding Company. NOTE::: Make sure all persons handling money are bonded which is a By-laws requirement!!

In May a firing of two employees cause a bit of a segregation in the members. And a labor case was filed by one of the fired employees.

The officers attended several district and post functions as well as we received many awards for community projects. The chili cook off competition and children’s orphanage Christmas party went very well.

Jul 2005: John Russell passed away.
Aug 2005: Walter Gorr passed away.
Sept 2005: Edward Whitehead passed away.
Dec 2005: Jose De Rosero passed away.
Jan 2006: Marvin Kirsch passed away.
May 2006: John Butts passed away.

2006 – 2007

Elected and appointed Officers were: Commander- Cesar Noble,Senior Vice Commander- Frank B. Hilliard IV; Junior Vice Commander- Reynaldo Vegara; QM- Bob Looker; Adjutant- Tim Aukshun; Advocate- Tom Morrision; Surgeon- Dave Pound; Chaplain- Gaspard; Trustee 1- Tim Aukshun; Trustee 2- John Mesaros; Trustee 3, Bob Upton

Membership increased to 200 as of 12 July 2006

QM Bob Looker was given leg surgery in August and Frank Hilliard IV was appointed QM Pro Temp. Later because of the extensive surgery and recommend no travel QM resigned.

A special meeting was called 30 August to nominate replacements for Junior Vice after Frank Hilliard IV resigned his senior vice to take QM nomination. And He was nominated QM. Also a Post Home Committee opening needed to be filled as well due to Franks accepting QM nomination.

Charges were filed by Past Commander Gaspard against Comrade Tuttle for assisting an employee in a labor dispute and he resigned from our Post in Sept.

The following were elected: Vice Commander -; QM:Frank - Hilliard IV; PHC Member -

Department Inspector, Bob Dodson, inspected in Sept.

In Nov 2006 our Chaplain Art Gaspard resigned and Comrade James Rogers was elected in Dec.

The Chili Cook off went well and the Baguio Beer Drinkers 2 won the best chili. Miss Chili pepper was won by Ms Shane from Nobles Place. A lot of hamburgers and hot dogs were sold and everyone had a good time. Dave Ransom and Ray Haskel and their band played and several guest singers from around the District emerged.

Our post also tried to impeach Trustee three. But when he commented that several other trustees had missed several meetings without repercussions, no one made a motion to relieve him. He had been on business in USA.

On 14 Dec several members with the Post Commander Noble conducted a funeral service for 1st Lt Romulo Villa, a WWII veteran and American citizen in Bauang.

The Annual Orphanage Christmas party was held on 22 Dec and over 50 students and staff had a great time getting gifts and eating food and ice cream.

Jan 07 begin a new year. Patriot Pen: Lorma was big winner of the Essay Contest for our post and District VII of Philippine Citizens. The latest Post by-laws were forwarded to Dept for approval.

Feb 07 brought a letter from Commander- In-Chief Krupius for 100% membership also with streamer to put on flag. Also read letter approving our by-laws from Department of the Pacific, Commander.A bonus of 10 kilo of rice per employee per month was approved.

Mar 07 had our QM Bob Looker resigning due to health and the Senior Vice Frank Hilliard resigned and was elected QM. Junior Vice nomination were open and Rey Vergara was nominated.

April 07 we hosted the District VII Convention and participated in the ANZAC day ceremony at Coconut Grove. The Cooties had a swarm at Butterfly which none will forget soon. The Junior Vice, Rey Vergara, was sworn in as new Junior Vice.

May 07 we buried another member Big Edwards at Buang.


Elected and appointed Officers were: Commander: Emory Russell, SVC- Comrade Sonny Dozier, JVC- Comrade Bob Looker,QM- Comrade Frank Hilliard, Chaplain- Comrade Jim Rogers,Surgeon- Comrade Dave Pound, Advocate- Comrade Tom Morrison, Trustee 3- Comrade Michael Kelly,Post Post Home Committee voted member; Comrade Art Gaspard.

Submitted by: Tim Aukshun, 12 April 2008

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