Fountain Hills’ Post 58 takes first place at 100th National Convention

American Legion Post 58’s newly formed color guard competed at the 100th National Convention, which was held Aug. 24-30, 2018, at the Minneapolis Convention Center in Minneapolis. They represented Arizona as the 2018 department state champions, which they won at the 2018 state conference held in June in Phoenix. This is the first time in the 100 years of the competition that the Arizona color guard competed at National and won.
The color guard members who competed are Kevin Wood, captain, member and American flag bearer; Bob Putnam, member and Post 58 flag bearer; Phil Yin, director, member and lead rifleman; and Tait Elkie, member and trail rifleman. They are all active members of the post, holding or having recently held positions of executive leadership.
The competitors included color guards from 23 posts across the United States who competed in four different judged categories, some of them competing in this contest for more than 10 years. Post 58 was awarded first place in the National Color Guard Military Class contest by the judging committee.
The trophy and banner were presented to the team by National Commander Denise Rohan during the awards ceremony. She stated, “You are the role models, you are the leaders of the parades, you are the heroes … and all of those children who are watching, they understand and get that warm feeling in their heart and know why they care about America so much. You are fine examples,” Rohan said. “I’m so proud to watch each and every one of you as you performed. And I hope you take that same sense of pride back home with you.”
The team also met with Department of Arizona Commander Steve Aguirre, who commended their accomplishments.
Upon their return from the national convention, the color guard members presented the trophy and banner to Post 58 Commander John Weedo at a special ceremony. Weedo went on to thank the color guard on behalf of the entire post. Additional comments were made from the director of the color guard, Phil Yin, who added, “This award reflects the dedication, motivation and hard work of the color guard team members. We practiced for five weeks, three days each week, in the early mornings and early evenings. We believe this was instrumental in helping us to be ready for this competition.”
The performance video and photos can be viewed on Post 58’s website – It is here that you can also find information on Membership, Officers, Calendar, Programs, Benefits, Legion Riders and Auxiliary.