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Merged VFW post undergoing renovations

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The recently revamped Collierville VFW Post 5066 is quickly becoming one of the most acclaimed posts in the state.

Earlier this year, Collierville’s 71-year-old post merged with the now dissolved Post 1965, which served veterans from Bartlett and Germantown. Since then, membership has flourished, necessitating recent and future cosmetic and structural work to the languishing log cabin on S. Center Street.

Post Commander Brian Walker has been one of the driving forces for the post’s renaissance.
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An Olympic-size public swimming pool used to be located behind the Collierville VFW.
Walker was elected commander in 2013, taking the reins from longtime commander Ramsey “Mickey” Locke.

Since then, attendance at the group’s monthly dinner meetings has tripled.

The post also recently received a $40,000 facelift, which included extensive exterior and interior renovations.

Walker said the original building, which is just south of Historic Town Square, was built from logs pulled from the Coldwater River in Mississippi. However, an exoskeleton of Hardie board siding was recently added around the structure by Hart Family Construction to preserve the building.

“We had to cover the old logs up to save the building,” Walker noted.

New windows, shutters and doors were also installed.

Walker said the post, which has been given “All-American” status for the past two years, isn’t stopping there. He added that future renovation efforts could cost another $60,000.
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VFW Post 5066 Commander Brian Walker goes through old documents at the Collierville post. 
He plans to tackle the landscaping next and will soon begin taking donations for personalized brick pavers that will be laid in the front courtyard around the flagpole, which is dedicated to Capt. William Fisher, the first Collierville resident to perish in World War II.

The bricks will honor veterans and it is Walker’s hope that family members will participate in laying the pieces of history.

Walker also plans to have the low hanging fluorescent lights raised higher into the rafters and will eventually renovate the kitchen space.

While much has changed at VFW Post 5066 (there is no longer an Olympic-size public swimming pool behind the building), much remains the same.

Although unusable, the massive stone fireplace, which includes a grate made of railroad tracks from the nearby Norfolk Southern Railway, is still in place. The smooth concrete floors also remain unchanged.

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“Not a crack in them,” Walker said smiling. “They’re pretty proud of that.”

The old logs are visible indoors and the stage is still intact.

Also unchanged is the VFW’s mission to ensure that veterans are respected for their service, always receive their earned entitlements, and are recognized for the sacrifices they and their loved ones have made on behalf of America.

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For more information, call Walker at 901-262-3570.

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