Furer-Barag-Wolf POST 126
The Post was initially established in 1936, and named “Tri-County Post # 126”, Camden, Gloucester and Burlington Counties. The Post owned its own home and had an active Ladies Auxiliary. A “Sons of JWV” Drum and Bugle Corp was formed and they practiced in the Talmud Torah building at 615 Kaighn Ave., Camden, NJ.
They marched in all holiday parades on Broadway in Camden, NJ. and participated in “out of town” parades and at State Conventions. Rose Simon was the drum majorette.
The Post home was at 523 Broadway in Camden, where meetings and breakfasts were held. A credit union was established and many members contributed so that less fortunate comrades could secure loans to survive the post depression era.
After WW2 the Post was renamed the John F. Furer Post # 126 in memory of Post Commander Jacob Furer’s son, who died in combat. During this period a second post was formed in Camden, and named the “Herbert A. Barag Post # 539”. A few years later, as a result of reduced membership, the two posts merged and named themselves the “Furer-Barag Post # 126 of Camden County”.
In the early 90’s Post activities became stagnant as membership severely dwindled due to deaths and migration to warmer climates. At that time, then Commander Ed Segal also had a debilitating stroke. The original Post home had been sold years earlier and it was difficult to find meeting places.
In 1995, a core group of about 8 members was determined to restore Post activities and presence in the South Jersey area. Robert Richter was elected Post Commander and Arthur Seltzer was elected Senior Vice Commander. The new leadership’s first priority was to increase membership. A regular meeting location was secured by Bob Richter at Temple Beth Sholom in Cherry Hill, NJ (Bob was then a Vice President at the Temple). The Post was renamed the “Furer – Barag Post 126, Cherry Hill, NJ”. As a result of very aggressive recruiting by Bob Richter, membership increased to approximately 300 comrades within six years.
The Post became very active at the local, county, state and national levels and made its presence known at all echelons. In 1997, Commander Richter received the Department “Commander of the Year Award”, and the “Recruiting the Most New Members Award”. The Post received the Department “Post of the Year Award” and the “Most Membership Increase Award”. Commander Richter has received the National “Recruiting the Most New Members Award” for the past 9 years (as of 2006).
Arthur Seltzer was elected Commander and Larry Altersitz (a Vietnam Veteran) was elected Senior Vice Commander in 1997. The Post continued to grow and prosper and received the National “Most Membership Increase Award” for 1998 at the National Convention in Norfolk, VA. By the year 2005, the Post had received that award every year at the National and State levels. In 1998, Arthur Seltzer received the Department “Commander of the Year Award” and was also elected to the NEC (National Executive Committee). Larry Altersitz was elected Commander in 1999 with Marshall Baker being elected Senior Vice Commander. Also in 1999 past Commander Richter was elected to the NEC and appointed Chief of Staff South for the Department Commander. Commander Larry Altersitz received the Department “Commander of the Year Award” in the year 2000.
Many active younger members from the Korean and Vietnam wars were recruited to insure continuity of the Post for many years. An average of about 45 new members have been added annually, increasing the membership total to over 300 in 2001. In the year 2001, Post 126 became the largest and most active JWV Post in New Jersey.
In August of 2003, the Joseph Wolf Post 315 of Burlington, NJ merged with Post 126 to become Furer-Barag-Wolf Post 126 of Cherry Hill, NJ. As a result of this merger the Beverly Pilgrimage, in which wreathes are placed at JWV graves at the Beverly National Cemetery and Crescent Cemetery by family members, has continued as an annual Post event and the Post 126 Scholarship was created.
In 2005 the Post became one of the top three largest JWV Post in the country.