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Legion presents awards, gives to charities

By Ronnie Thomas 340-2438

In addition to recognizing numerous community leaders during its annual awards dinner Friday night, American Legion Post 15 distributed $37,000 from its bingo proceeds to local and area charities.

Among the gifts that Post Commander Willard Tapscott gave were $5,000 each to Parents and Children Together and the Veterans Administration Hospital in Birmingham.

"We're pleased to help all of the agencies and especially the VA," he said. "That donation will help veterans take part in the Special Olympics in Washington."

Tapscott presented the Veteran of the Year award to Lester H. Cole. Decatur Fire Chief Charlie Johnson presented Firefighter of the Year posthumously to Lt. Tommy Hill.

Other award winners:

Morgan County Volunteer Firefighter, Price Owens; Law Enforcement Officer, Sgt. Barry Hamilton; Morgan County Sheriff's Deputy, Bobby Nethery; Rescue Squad Member, Josh Johnson, Morgan County; Educator for Decatur City Schools, Lt. Col. James L. Walker, senior instructor, Austin High School JROTC; Educator for Morgan County Schools, Lt. Col. Randy J. Pestona, senior instructor, Brewer High School; Eagle Scout, Thomas Kyle McInnis of Decatur; Austin High School JROTC Battalion, Lt. Col. Walker; Brewer High School JROTC Battalion, Lt. Col. Pestona.

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