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Caring for Veterans

Travis Ehrenberg, plans to apply to Cornell
Morris County, New Jersey
American flag with Legion seal in center

"I am a sophomore at Delbarton High School in New Jersey. Having gone from a student-athlete to a stay at home teen during the coronavirus outbreak has given me a lot of time to think about the values my parents have instilled in me. My father is a police officer, and my mother was an officer in the military. My mother is currently the Vice Commander of American Legion Post 342 in Chester, New Jersey. I am a member of the same Post as a Son of the Legion. There are about 100 veterans in our legion, at least 95 percent of them are elderly. I am concerned about their welfare during this time of social isolation. I have thought about the courage all of these fantastic veterans have exhibited during their lifetime and realized it was my turn to offer help and assistance. I asked my mom if I could call the members of our legion and start a weekly 'buddy check.' So, every day I call several veterans from our roster and reach out to make sure they are doing well. We spend some time conversing, and I let them know that they can contact me anytime if they need something or just want to talk. It’s heartwarming to see that a simple phone call can be so uplifting to so many people. I am honored to do my part and serve our elderly veterans."