73 years strong: Charter member still active in Conrad Legion Auxiliary

Darlene Reece (pictured) of Conrad has been a member of the local American Legion Auxiliary Unit 681 since its inception in 1946. At 96 years old, she’s still an active member. (Photo courtesy of JoAnn Klein)

Darlene Reece was just 23 years old when she attended the inaugural meeting of the Conrad American Legion Auxiliary Unit 681 in 1946, and her husband Vern had recently returned from Navy service during World War II. Over seven decades later, she’s still an active member.


“They do things a little different (now), and there aren’t as many of us now as there were. We had quite a group before, and we could do a lot of things because there were that many,” she said. “Now, there’s just a few, and we’re all getting old. We don’t have any real young ones.”


Reece, an area native, attended a country school in rural Marshall County before moving closer to Conrad, graduated from Conrad High School (and played girls basketball) and settled here with Vern after the war to farm before later moving to Florida for 27 years to enjoy retirement. After Vern’s passing in 2015, however, she returned to her hometown, and she never let her membership in the Conrad Legion Auxiliary unit lapse. Now 96, she’s still a regular presence at monthly meetings.


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