Con Men Among Us - 27 East


Southampton Press / Opinion / Letters / 1816613

Con Men Among Us

Throughout the course of the year, legitimate veterans service organizations take donations to help with relief programs and to assist their communities helping veterans, military members and the youth of our nation. This is done in various ways, and one of the most common is the distribution of paper poppies, a time-honored tradition for 100 years based on the poppies growing on the graves of soldiers killed in battle in World War I, and the flowers returning every year. This story is memorialized in the poem “In Flanders Field,” written by Lieutenant Colonel John McCrae.

This is only one example of legitimate veterans service organizations accepting donations from generous citizens. For example, when I say “legitimate veterans service organizations,” I mean the Veterans of Foreign Wars, the American Legion, the Disabled American Veterans, Am Vets, and any auxiliary members of these organizations. These organizations should wear what we call our overseas cover, which is a military hat identifying the organization and what post they are affiliated with. Only a member of one of this organizations can be issued one of these distinctive covers.

Unfortunately, there are individuals who will claim that they are helping others and just pocket any donations. These scams are prevalent in the world in general, and there will always be con men among us — they may phone your home, mail you or set up on Main Street to take your money.

Please continue to support those in need, but be aware of those who are just helping themselves. They may be wearing a baseball cap that says “veteran,” or wearing camouflage fatigues or some other clothing as part of their ruse.

Another big identifier of a legitimate veterans service member is that they will only appear in the community that their post is chartered in, unless they have specific permission to enter another post’s area of influence.

Thank you for your support, and God bless America.

William Hughes


“All American” Post 5350

Westhampton Beach