VFW post’s first female leader takes command
In San Clemente’s Veterans of Foreign Wars Post 7142, there’s a new personality in command to put the men at ease.
The post this week installed Dolores “Dee” Padgett as the first female commander in its 64-year history and one of the first female post commanders in Orange County. She is one of only two women among 69 post members, but she aims to change that.
Padgett, a former Army nurse who served in Vietnam, said she wants to welcome more Vietnam vets to the VFW, and more vets from all foreign wars, both male and female.
The post declared its officer installation day Wednesday as “Dee Day,” coinciding with the 68th anniversary of the June 6, 1944, D-Day invasion of Nazi-occupied France during World War II.
Lou Jordan, 2011-12 commander of VFW District 2, which includes all of Orange County, traveled from Anaheim to officiate the ceremony at Irons in the Fire restaurant at San Clemente Municipal Golf Course.
Joining Padgett as officers are Francis Reyes, senior vice commander; Donald Young, junior vice commander, Alex Neil, quartermaster; Jerald Quinlan, chaplain; James Ferguson, surgeon; James Carson, judge advocate; and trustees Barry Trauger, Charles Gullett and Clarence Kaleta.
The post meets at 6:30 p.m. the second Wednesday of each month at the San Clemente Elks Lodge, 1505 N. El Camino Real. For details, call Neil at 949-366-8477.
NOTE: In 2001, Post 7142 merged with Post 9934.