Sons of the American Revolution, Ohio Society Activities

Naturalization Ceremony


On Friday, July 6, Northeastern Ohio Chapter and Western Reserve Society SAR Color Guards posted the National Colors at the Naturalization Ceremony hosted at President Garfield’s home, Lawnfield, in Mentor, Ohio. This program was sponsored by the National Park Services and the United States District Court for the Northern District of Ohio. The program took place on the back lawn of Garfield’s home where it was a beautiful sunny day.


The Honorable Judge William Baughman of the U.S. District Court of the Northern District of Ohio presents the Certificates of Naturalization to the new citizens. Here he is presenting a certificate to a Canadian citizen who just took the oath for U.S. citizenship.


The combined Color Guard congratulates new citizens and have a photo op. L to R: A new citizen and her son, John H. Franklin, Dan Matheke, Steve Hinson and Venie, another new citizen and her son, Troy Bailey and Christine, Jim Gilbert and Dianne, and Galen Swab.

Ohio Society SAR Fundraising Programs


Please consider a donation to one of the Ohio Society SAR Fundraising Programs.

Ft. Laurens Regiment Endowment Program

Your donation to the Ft. Lauren’s Regiment Endowment Program will help secure the future success of many of the Ohio Society SAR programs. You decide which endowments will benefit from your donation. For more information, download the donation form:  http://ohssar.org/wp-content/uploads/2017/08/FT-Laurens-Flier-2Aug17.pdf

There is still time before our July 28th Fort Laurens Memorial Service to become an officer in the Fort Laurens Regiment or advance your rank!

The Fort Laurens Regiment will once again muster after the Fort Laurens Memorial Ceremony in Bolivar Ohio for our annual photograph. Make sure you are included by supporting the Ohio Society Endowments through the Fort Laurens Regiment Program.


Legacy Donations – 1st Place Youth Award Naming 

Would you like to leave a living legacy?  You can now endow a first place youth award for perpetuity by making one of the legacy donations listed below. Your name or your chapter’s name will forever be added to the endowed award. Here is the donation schedule for endowing and naming the 1st Place Youth Awards:

The Rumbaugh – High Oration  ________________ 1st Place Award 

$20,000 donation – endows an annual $1000 award.

The Eagle Scout ________________ 1st Place Award 

$16,000 donation – endows an annual $800 award.

The ROTC/JROTC ________________ 1st Place Award

$16,000 donation – endows an annual $800 award.

The George & Stella Knight Essay Contest _________________ 1st Place Award

$10, 000 donation – endows an annual $500 award.

The Americanism Elementary School Poster Contest ________________ 1st Place Award 

$5,000 donation – endows an annual $250 award.

The Americanism Middle School Brochure Contest ________________ 1st Place Award 

$5,000 donation – endows an annual $250 award.

Contact Compatriot Jack Bredenfoerder, Ohio Society SAR Fundraising Chairman for further details about how you can become a legacy donor: jack.b@fuse.net


Ohio Society Challenge Coins

The beautiful Ohio Society Challenge Coins designed by President General Joe Dooley make great gifts! They feature the Fort Laurens site – Ohio’s only Revolutionary War battle site. The proceeds of the challenge coins will benefit the OHSSAR general fund. Add this coin to your collection or they will make a fine gift to honor a special event or person! Download the order form from this link:

Ohio Society SAR Challenge Coins Order Form


Mahoning Valley and Northeastern chapter Color Guards gather to inaugurate their first joint 4th of July parade

Members of the Mahoning Valley Chapter and Color Guard were joined by the Northeastern Ohio Color Guard for the 53rd annual Canfield Fourth of July parade.  Clare Neff, wife of Mahoning Valley member, Bruce Neff, one of the co-chair of the parade planning committee aided the chapter in making our inaugural participation a great event.

The parade left from the Canfield Fairgrounds under sunny skies led by Police Chief, Chuck Colucci and Fire Chief, Don Hutchison promptly at 10:10 AM, proceeded down North Broad street, and winds to the Green past the reviewing Stand, a distance of approximately one and one quarter miles. The members of Mahoning Valley Chapter and both Color guards did well in the face of the 85 degree heat and high humidity.  At the end of the parade, some of the public asked to take photos with Color Guardsmen. Entertainment and music followed the parade near the Green.


Members of the Mahoning Valley Chapter Color Guard muster for the 4th of July parade in Canfield and were joined by their brothers from Northeastern Ohio Chapter.


Northeastern Ohio Chapter Color Guard joined Mahoning Valley for their first 4th of July parade. Dan Matheke, Jim Gilbert, Troy Bailey and Steve Hinson chat with a member of Mahoning Valley. Photo by Phil Bracy

Highlanders SAR President Honored by U.S. District Court – Cincinnati, OH


Highlanders SAR President Ken Carpenter received a very special recognition at the June 29th naturalization ceremonies at the Potter Stewart US District Court on Friday, June 29th. The Honorable Stephanie K. Bowman presented Ken with a certificate of appreciation signed by all the Southern Ohio Federal judges. Ken was recognized for his long-term service to the Federal Court naturalization ceremonies. Ken also received a beautiful Southern Ohio US Federal Court pin.

Flag Day and Naturalization Ceremony 2018 – Cleveland, Ohio


On Thursday, June 14, the Western Reserve Society Sons of the American Revolution, Archibald Willard Color Guard, and Northeast Ohio Chapter SAR Color Guard, participated in the combined 241st Flag Day Anniversary, the U.S. Army 243nd Birthday, and the Naturalization Ceremony at The Rock and Roll Hall of Fame and Museum in downtown Cleveland, which hosted this program. The Association of the U.S. Army, Newton D. Baker Chapter and the Joint Veterans’ Council of Cuyahoga County once again sponsored the event. The United States Citizenship and Immigration Service and the U.S. District Court presented the naturalization certificates. It was a beautiful day for a very special celebration!

The program started with the posting of the Colors by the U.S. Army Recruiting Battalion, Cleveland Post accompanied by the SAR Color Guard. Major Thomas Jenks, U.S. Army (Ret.) and president of the Joint Veteran’s Council of Cuyahoga County welcomed everyone. The master of ceremonies was Reverend Stan Miller, long time Clevelander and minister of Rust United Methodist Church. Patricia Ramos sang the National Anthem. Rev. Miller gave a salute to all those who served in the military and the new immigrants on becoming US citizens. There were greetings from a number of dignitaries and local groups, including the U.S. Army’s recognition of the Soldier of the Year by Newton D. Baker, Greater Cleveland Chapter of Association of the U.S. Army, to Sergeant First Class Jordan Ferrari. Congratulations!


The guest Speaker was Chief Justice Solomon Oliver, Jr. from the United States District Court for the Northern District of Ohio. He spoke on the knowledge the new citizens learned about our country, which may be more than most citizens know and that they should take the time to register and vote. He asked everyone to learn about the candidates between now and November. Judge Oliver then swore in thirty new citizens from eighteen countries.



Judge Polster welcoming two new citizens. Retiring the Colors of the Western Reserve Society SAR, Archibald Willard Color Guard.

To close the program the combined Western Reserve Society and North East Chapter of the SAR retired the colors. Everyone congratulated the new citizens who were available for pictures. All were invited to have a piece of the Army’s birthday cake inside the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame.


John Franklin, Lee MacBride, Jim Gilbert, Dan Matheke, Steve Hinson, James Pildner, Galen Swab and David Wiedner

Mahoning Valley SAR Celebrates Flag Day – Youngstown, OH


Hub Scott Flag Collection

The Mahoning Valley Chapter SAR joined with the Mahoning and Mary Chesney Chapters DAR at the Youngstown Country Club to celebrate Flag Day. Highlights of the meeting was Scott Davis Chapter Secretary’s presentation on the Hub Scott flag collection with the assistance of John Opre, Vice President and swearing in of new member, William Bruce Neff.

Photo 1

Left to Right: John Layfield, member, Mary Chesney DAR, Mary Barson, Patricia Brandes, Regent Janet Schwietzer, Carol Olson, Chaplin and Barbara Layfield , Chapter President Phil Bracy and Scott Davis, Chapter Secretary.

The Hub Scott collection was assembled by Samuel Hubbard Scott of Toledo, Ohio.
A World War 1 veteran, he joined the SAR in 1948 and was soon elected to President of the Anthony Wayne Chapter. In 1958 he was recognized as a National Society Minuteman. He was also a member of the American  Legion and recognized for his patriotic flag displays known as the Mile of Flags. He never married and at his death in
1977 at age 86 the flag collection passed to the Ohio Society SAR to display and educate the public. The Mahoning Valley SAR Chapter wishes to thank the Ohio Society SAR and Tony Robinson, caretaker of the collection for sharing this resource with us.

Photo 3

Secretary Scott Davis speaker on the flag collection with assistance of John Opre, Vice President.

The chapter also welcomed Bruce Neff as a new member. Chapter President Phil Bracy invited all who could to participate  in the Canfield 4th of July parade and our newest “Honor your Patriot” venue the Trumbull County Fair. The flag collection will be featured and the chapter will be joined by the Mary Chesney DAR chapter at the carriage house from July 10 – 15. Bracy also announced that Mahoning chapter DAR would be celebrating its 125th Anniversary at a brunch scheduled  at the Holiday Inn in Boardman on July 28th.

Photo 4

Swearing in of new member Bruce Neff with Phil Bracy, Chapter President.

Lake View Cemetery Memorial Day – Cleveland, OH

On Monday, May 28, 2018, The Western Reserve Society Archibald Willard Color Guard participated in the Lake View Cemetery Annual Memorial Day Event. This takes place in the shadow of the grand monument of the 20th US President, James A. Garfield, who spoke at the first Decoration Day on May 30,1868 at Arlington National Cemetery, which is now Memorial Day.

The Archibald M. Willard Color Guard started the program followed by the Boy Scout Troop 701 from Strongsville Ohio, Cleveland Public Schools Horizon Science Academy JROTC and “We Made History” historic reenactors portraying George Washington, Abraham Lincoln, Mary Todd Lincoln, President Ulysses S. Grant, General James A. Garfield, and Lucretia Garfield.

At the start of the program, there was a welcoming by Lake View Cemetery President Katharine Goss who introduced the Master of Ceremonies Terry Whalen.

The Horizon Science Academy JROTC raised the American Flag, and then the Cleveland Letter Carriers Band NALC Branch 40 played the National Anthem. Next Eagle Scout Brendan Kenehan, Troop 701, led everyone in the Pledge of Allegiance. Irv Aplis of American Legion Post 759 gave the opening prayer. The Cleveland Letter Carriers Band then played the “Tribute to the Armed Forces.”

The Memorial address was given by Todd Arrington PhD, a career National Park Service historian, park ranger, manager and veteran. He is currently overseeing the James A. Garfield National Historic Site in Mentor, Ohio. He spoke on the importance of Memorial Day from when Garfield gave his speech in 1868 to today, those who have severed our nation, from the American Revolution to the War in Iraqi and Afghanistan, and the people who “gave it their all so that we have our freedoms today.”

After the Memorial address there was the placing of wreaths by 20 organizations, including the SAR, DAR, C.A.R., Order of Founders and Patriots, American Legion and VFW units. SAR member Galen Swab placed a wreath on behalf of the Western Reserve Society.Tim and James Garfield, descendants of President James A. Garfield also placed a wreath. This was followed by the Horizon Science Academy High School JROTC rifle salute. Taps were played by Cleveland Letter Carriers Band members Mike Mahoney, Lead Bugler and Tom Mogyordy, Echo Bugler, and were followed by the benediction. To close out the program, Tom Garfield, the 3rd Great Grandson of President James A. Garfield played Amazing Grace on his bagpipe.It was a beautiful warm day of remembrance in honor of all those who have passed away!



Memorial Day Observance – Canfield, OH

Left to Right Front Row: Melanie Opre, Ladies Auxillary, and Barb Layfield, DAR Warren. Second Row: John Gilbert, John Ore, Commander Color Guard, Scott Davis, Secretary, John Layfield and Jim Alexander, Chapter Chaplain.

On Monday, May 28th, 2018, members of the Mahoning Valley SAR chapter, ladies auxiliary and color guard participated in the 97th annual Canfield Ohio Memorial Day observation. This was the chapter’s second year of participation.

The keynote speaker for the event was U.S. Army Colonel Matt Kinkead.

Color Guard participants included Commander John Opre; John Gilbert; Scott Davis, Secretary; John Layfield and Jim Alexander, Chaplain.

Special thanks to John and Barb Layfield for coming in from Warren.


Mahoning Valley SAR Participates in Grave Marking – Ashtabula, OH

Grave of Thomas Barrett. John Opre, Commander Mahoning Valley Chapter Color Guard and Scott Davis, Secretary participate in Patriot Marking with Northeastern Chapter.

On May 23rd, 2018, at the invitation of the Northeastern Ohio Chapter SAR, Mahoning Valley SAR Color Guard Commander John Opre and Chapter Secretary Scott Davis attended the Patriot Grave marking at the Durkee Cemetery in Monroe Township, Ashtabula County, Ohio.

The Mahoning Valley members observed and learned the Sons of the American Revolution protocol for marking the grave of a Patriot of the American Revolution.

Special thanks to the Northeastern Ohio Chapter!

Mahoning Valley Chapter SAR Welcomes New Member – Youngstown, OH

Photo from Left to Right Vice President, John Opre, new member, Phillip Dudeck and Mahoning Valley Chapter President Phil Bracy. Photo by Scott Davis.

On May 23rd, 2018, Mahoning Valley SAR President Phil Bracy, Vice President John Opre and Secretary Scott Davis and Vice President, John Opre gathered at the Youngstown Country Club to swear in and welcome new member Phillip Dudeck.

The event took place outside of the usual meeting structure because of the uniqueness of his situation. Dudeck is an Interpretive Guide and student, working until recently at Fort Necessity. Although a student for another year, he has transitioned to Fort Frederick State Park in Hagerstown, Maryland as an Interpretive Guide.

Dudeck was asked to share his experiences at both historic sites at upcoming chapter meetings when in town.

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