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Dixie Hild, the national president of the Ladies Auxiliary to the VFW of the United States, visited Union Friday afternoon as part of a whirlwind tour of departments across the country.
“It’s quite an honor to have her here,” said Paul Brookshire, a member of VFW High Valley Post 4060.
Following a visit to Union City Park’s veterans memorial, Hild enjoyed a luncheon at the Union Hotel. She then spent part of the afternoon visiting at the High Valley Post on Main Street.
Hild, who lives in Omaha, Neb., and has been involved with the Ladies Auxiliary for 24 years, was formally elected to her prestigious position on Aug. 21 at the close of the organization’s 95th National Convention in Orlando, Fla.
Regarding her present tour, she said that, in addition to trying to bolster membership in the Auxiliary, she was emphasizing the support of the nation’s troops, both overseas and home, and their families.
“Those 15-month deployments can be really hard on families,” she noted.
Meanwhile, she marveled at the aesthetics of Union and its natural surroundings.
“It is a beautiful area,” she said.
An avid outdoorswoman, Hild said she enjoyed the trek across the northern Blue Mountains from Pendleton, which included a stop at Emigrant Springs State Park.
ALL TOGETHER: Dixie Hild (center), national president of the VFW Ladies Auxiliary, stands with Jo Crow, president of the High Valley Ladies Auxiliary; Patti Tusten, member of the High Valley Ladies Auxiliary; Joyce Wagner, Oregon Department president of the Ladies Auxiliary; and Jack Zimmerman, VFW Post 4060 commander. - The Observer/ETHAN SCHOWALTER-HAY
Later this fall, Hild will journey overseas to places like Taiwan, Korea and Panama, and honor the anniversary of Pearl Harbor in Hawaii.
She will appear at the Statue of Liberty’s Birthday Ceremony on Oct. 28, and attend the presidential inauguration in January.
The Ladies Auxiliary, which claims nearly 600,000 members in the United States, Guam and Panama, is comprised of women connected to military service and dedicated to the affairs of veterans and their families.
Hild is the second Ladies Auxiliary national president to have visited Union in recent memory. In 2005, then-President JoAnne Ott swung through town on her tour of the country.