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Veterans Say “No Thanks” to Unwanted “Gift”

The veterans at V.F.W. Post 3402 on Pond Street in Franklin got a little bit more than they asked for this past Veteran’s Day weekend – someone else’s problem. According to Post Commander Larry Bederian, V.F.W. members discovered a dumped easy chair, along with discarded beer cans, left next to their dumpster when they were preparing for the Veterans’ holiday. They will have to pay to have it removed, he says.
“If you could see the things we find around the back of this building,” says Bederian. Items, he says, are left all the time – items like the chair and a grill that sits beside the post’s back steps.
Although the post pays Lawrence Waste Management, from Medway, to pick up trash from the dumpster once a month, says Bederian, “They won’t take the chair, only household trash,” he says. “To me, it’s disgusting, because you’ve got to go to town hall or call up,” Bederian estimates, the vets would be charged an extra $10 or $15 a piece to get rid of the larger items.
Bederian says that the Franklin V.F.W. got its start in Franklin in 1935. In 1955, the nonprofit moved from a location in the GE building, where Dean Bank is now, to its current location, which had been a one-room schoolhouse build in the 1800s. The additional side, says Bederian, was built in the 1960s. Currently, the Franklin V.F.W. Post 3402 has about 70 members, although, as many veterans’ organizations, it struggles to attract participation from younger generations coming back from the service.
“If we had to depend on membership,” says Bederian, “you could not sustain being open. If it wasn’t for the functions that we have, the rentals, that help pay for the lighting, the heat and the upkeep, you can’t survive.” Bederian says functions are family-oriented, and local groups, such as scout groups, regularly use the hall.
Bederian says he knows the V.F.W. is not the only location with a dumpster that gets burdened with others’ unwanted items, but he hopes whoever left the armchair will think twice about dumping their problem on someone else and come pick it up.

by By J.D. O’Gara