Labor Union Volunteers and Veterans Join Together with Community to Paint Total Interior of American Legion Post 1, in Germantown in Just 4 Hours
Jim Heimann served in the Army during Vietnam as the Crew Chief of the 01 Bird Dog Reconnaissance Aircraft. He describes the Legion as, “A place to be with other veterans who have gone through what you’ve gone through, at least on a basic level.”
Now a legionnaire for 24 years, he amazing that so many guys still want to after all they have given, but that’s what we do.”
It’s truly amazing; we are indeed lucky to have the Legionnaires in our community, who gave in service and somehow are able to continue to focus outward.
One day, Jim looked around his familiar home Post of 24 years. He thought it was “getting a little dingy,” so he got some estimates because they “had planned on painting it ourselves.” Fellow Legionnaire, Union Retiree 9 GCC/IBT [Graphic Communications Conference International Brotherhood of Teamsters] Local 577M), and long-time volunteer with Milwaukee Area Labor Council, AFL-CIO Chris Yatchak, heard about the painting needs from Jim and contacted Kurt Schmidt, an AFL-CIO Labor Community Service Liaison with Labor Community @ Work. Teaming up with another stalwart volunteer, Tom Coyne, President of Waukesha County Labor Council, AFL-CIO and member of IUPAT DC 7 and Painters Local 781 they began organizing efforts with Local 781 and International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers Local 2150.
“We helped out where we could,” explained Jim. Indeed; the community efforts were outstanding!
When Jim arrived around ten a.m. with his two grandaughters Madelyn, 11 and Olyvia, 8, he was surprised. “I was just blown away. They were almost done by the time we got there.” That’s because so many union members had volunteered at 7:00 a.m. on Saturday, February 11, that the full interior was re-painted by 11 a.m. 75 people from the community area in total showed up to help Jim and his Brothers in the Legion!
“I think it looks fantastic. It’s like a brand new post. Words fail me. We are very grateful for what they did. Union Strong.”
Jim muses on the likenesses of the Legionnaires and the Union members. “A veterans organization [such as the American Legion] is like a brotherhood — just as the unions are a brotherhood and help each other.”
Members who volunteer with Labor Community @ Work are so grateful for the service the men and women of our armed forces have given, and continue to give. There is no comparison to what they offer in the ultimate sacrifice for our country. But when it comes to brother/sisterhood, there is definitely a mutual understanding. We’ve got your back.
The painting project at the American Legion Post 1 in Germantown was a great success thanks to the efforts of the following:
Painters Local 781
District Council 7
IBEW (International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers) Local 2150
IBEW (International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers) Local 494
Liuna-Laborers Local 113
Liuna-Laborers Local 330
CWA (Communication Workers of America) 1403
UFCW (United Food and Commercial Workers) 1473
Sheet Metal Workers Local 18
Cement Workers Local 599
IAM (International Association of Machinists) Local 1377
Carpenters & Floor Coverers Local 344
American Legion Post 1 Germantown
Veterans of Foreign Wars (VFW) Post 9202 Germantown
American Income Life (area business)
$6000 value in labor was provided.
Paint and supplies donated by Pittsburgh Paint, worth approx. $900.
Photos by Scott Carstens, IUPAT DC 7