For 75 years, the Alford-Clarke Veterans of Foreign Wars Post No. 852 has served as a second home for troops coming back to Lawrence from over there.
For the post's anniversary Monday, current VFW officials honored members who have been with the post since the fall of Nazi Germany and passed the torch to those who will help usher in a new generation of veterans.
"It's been an absolute ball all these years," Kansas Quartermaster/Adjutant Darrell Bencken said at the hall, 138 Ala. "I don't have to tell you how good a job you've done."
Bencken said he'd been an acquaintance of the post for more than 25 years, and that he knows many of the officers well.
That included current post President Vern Russell, who presented pins to members who have been with the post more than 50 years.
Elvin Davison received one of those awards, along with a medal commemorating members who fought at Saipan, in the Commonwealth of the Northern Mariana Islands, during World War II.
"You're cleaning up tonight," Russell told Davison during the ceremony.
Two other men received medals as well, and four others received 50-year pins.
Now the post will turn its attention to recruiting younger members, those who will keep the 75-year tradition going in the future.
Incoming President Paul Benner said he hoped to boost membership by more than 100 members next year - a necessary influx of young faces.
During his speech, Bencken mirrored Benner's hopes.
"That's what this organization needs," Bencken said.