(William a. "Bill" Thien, Commander-in-Chief of the Veterans of Foreign Wars)
Gene Kijanowski, Commander, Post 717 says that Commander Thien's service record to our country, "is admirable and we are proud to have him in Northwest Indiana." According to his bio, Thien served in the U.S. Navy from 1969-1974 and served five years in the Indiana National Guard. His decorations incllude the Vietnam Service Medal with 3 stars, Vietnam Campaign Medal with 1960 Bar, Armed Forces Expeditionary Medal (Korea), National Defense Service Medal and several from the National Guard.
About the VFW:
The VFW traces its roots back to 1899 when veterans of the Spanish-American War (1898) and the Philippine Insurrection (1899-1902) founded local organizations to secure rights and benefits for their service.
Since then, the VFW's voice had been instrumental in establishing the Veterans Administration, creating a GI bill for the 20th century, the development of the national cemetery system and the fight for compensation for Vietnam vets exposed to Agent Orange and for veterans diagnosed with Gulf War Syndrome. In 2008, VFW won a long-fought victory with the passing of a GI Bill for the 21st Century, giving expanded educational benefits to America's active-duty service members, and members of the Guard and Reserves, fighting in Iraq and Afghanistan.
Annually, the nearly 2 million members of the VFW and its Auxiliaries contribute more than 8.6 million hours of volunteerism in the community, including participation in Make A Difference Day and National Volunteer Week.
From providing over $3 million in college scholarships and savings bonds to students every year, to encouraging elevation of the Department of Veterans Affairs to the president's cabinet, the VFW is there.