Thank you for posting the obituary for Lawrence Bakalich in The Landmark last week. Lawrence was a loyal member of American Legion Post #488. He was not always able to make our meetings, but that did not stop him from being the example of a citizen/soldier to his country and his community. 

When I took over as the post commander about four years ago, the post membership agreed that each member would be provided an American Legion cap to wear with pride at post functions and at community functions. 

We arranged for a cap to be sent to Lawrence. He was so overwhelmed when it arrived by mail. When he first received it about a year ago, his wife told me that he wore it for days with pride. I recently talked to Lawrence’s wife, and she told me that the cap meant so much to him that he was laid to rest with it. I simply cried.

American Legion posts around the country are honored to have the most incredible people as members. They have seen amazing things and have provided such incredible self-less service. Post #488 is no exception. 

We are honored to have people like Lawrence who are such role models to us all. Last year, Sons of the American Legion Squadron #488 was stood up, led by Commander Thomas Sisulak and Vice Commander James Connelly. 

Our hope is that the stories and memories of such great people like Lawrence will be passed down to our youth who join Squadron #488. Lawrence’s legacy must and will live on in the minds of our youth. 

Lawrence, we salute you. Ms. Bakalich, Post #488 and Squadron #488 are here for you during this time of sorrow. 

Joseph Baar Topinka, commander

Jason Hinsley, vice commander

Riverside American legion Post #488