by Jim Boyle
Elk River American Legion Commander Tom Kulkay has announced that for the second time in three years the national commander of the American Legion will be in Elk River to speak.
Charles E. Schmidt, national commander of The American Legion, will go on a walking tour of downtown Elk River about 4 p.m. Wednesday, Feb. 8.
There will be a social hour at the Elk River American Legion Post 512, 525 Railroad Drive, at about 5 p.m. with dinner at 6 p.m. and the commander’s speech to follow.
It’s unheard of to host the commander twice in just three years, Kulkay said.
Schmidt was elected national commander of the 2.2 million-member American Legion on Sept. 1, 2016, in Cincinnati during the 98th national convention of America’s largest veterans organization.
Schmidt enlisted in the U.S. Air Force in 1965 and served on active duty until his retirement in 1993.
During that time he advanced from an administrative clerk to a distinguished graduate of the Air Force Officer Training School, earning a commission and assignments to executive support officer positions at major headquarters. His Air Force assignments took him to Oregon, California, Montana, Nebraska, Colorado, England, Germany, the Philippines and Vietnam.
Schmidt resides in Hines, Oregon, with his wife, Linda. They have two children and six grandchildren.