JOHN ALLEN MEEKS II
MEET OUR EXECUTIVE BOARD
John started his Military service on 26 May 1969 in the United States Army.
He did his basic training at Ft. Knox, Ky. Then went to Ft. Polk, La. for advanced
infantry training. Then he was sent to Ft. Benning Ga. to attend NCO school.
While at Ft. Benning, he was given the opportunity to volunteer for Scout Dog
School. After the completion of Scout Dog School and a short leave, he was
ordered to Vietnam and arrived 13 April 1970. Upon his arrival at the dog detach-
ment center at Bien Hoa, he was given a dog named Artus (KO12) Artus had
arrived in Vietnam in 1966 and John became his 6th handler. Now as a team, they
were assigned to the 42nd Scout Dog Platoon attached to the 101st Airborne
Division. Artus and John worked in the I Corp area. Sadly, after faithfully serving
his 6 handlers with Loyalty and Courage, Artus was Killed in Action 11 Dec. 1970.
John returned home and was given an Honorable Discharge on 22 Mar. 1971.
John was awarded the Army Commendation Medal, Vietnam Service Medal,
Vietnam Campaign Medal, Combat Infantry Badge and the Bronze Star. While
John was with the 42nd Scout Dog Platoon, the Platoon was awarded 2 unit
citations, the Republic of Vietnam Gallantry Cross w/Palm and the Civil Actions
Upon his return back to civilian life, John concentrated his time and effort into his family and his career as a firefighter. In 2007, John joined his first military organization, VFW Post 1152 and immediately became a member of the Military Rites Team. He has served as the post's Quartermaster and presently is the Post Commander. Today he is also a member of the DAV Chapter 28, 40&8 Voiture 1103, American Legion Post 94, the Howard County Vietnam Veterans Org. and the Vietnam Dog Handlers Association.
John takes his position as Commander of VFW Post 1152 very serious and cares about it's members, Veterans, his community and the obligations of the VFW. Being a member of the other organizations is also important to John, but his true passion is being able to support our Military Working Dogs. He has traveled hundreds of miles to be a part of a War Dog Memorial dedication and over 600 miles just to give a presentation. He has also traveled to Military facilities and talked with the K9 handlers about his experiences and Chapter 3. He has used his own money to purchase equipment and items for care packages, travel expenses and upgrades to his fundraising displays. One very special highlight as Executive Director was being able to meet in person one of the handlers he was able to support and they continue to be in contact with each other. He has also dedicated the Chapter and all of his work to his dog "Artus"
In 2010, wanting to tell his children, grandchildren and even his wife somethings about Vietnam, John started writing. It did not take too long before he realized his story was not just about him, but also his partner in Vietnam, Artus, his dog. The more he wrote, the more he wanted people to know about Artus. So with encouragement by family and friends, John had his story published in 2012. "Before, During & After Vietnam" The story of a scout dog handler and his dog.
Linda is the Administrative Assistant at the Veterans Service Office in Howard County. She is also an Officer for the Disabled American Veterans Auxillary. She is very dedicated to helping our Veterans. Linda is always there to help and volunteers a lot of her time in making our projects become a success.
"Birdie"and John have been together since 1969. She is
very devoted to her family and her dogs. She has spent many hours running
errands, keeping track of merchandise, setting up and working at the Chapter's