PREAMBLE

To perpetuate the spirit of the Washington Artillery.

To stimulate love of our country and the flag, and to ever Cherish and keep alive the friendships made in peace and War during service in the old command.

We unite to form the Washington Artillery Veterans Association.

So that with the help of Saint Barbara, our Patron Saint,

“LET THE BATTERIES OPEN”,
“LET US HAVE CONTINUOUS FIRE”,
AND “TRY US”

President, Brian P. Champagne

A MESSAGE FROM THE PRESIDENT:

Fellow WAVA members, the past few months have seen some trying times for the members of WAVA and for our community. We have lost several of our founding members who have passed on to Fiddler’s Green and we have had to deal with a continually morphing pandemic that has affected many of our members and reduced attendance at meetings. The rampant crime in the city has also had a chilling effect on out attendance because some of our members simply do not want to drive through the city to attend a meeting. I also understand that you are not inclined to take those risks to attend a meeting that devolves into an argumentative and unprofessional atmosphere.

I fully understand those concerns and assure you that we have made changes in the way we do business and have taken huge strides in returning back to what the founders of WAVA intended it to be and that is a professional organization that perpetuates the spirit of the Washington Artillery. WAVA meetings provide a venue for us to maintain our relationships, foster fellowship and serve as mentors for the active battalion. We have changed the climate with which we conduct meetings and included time in our meeting format for fellowship. That is time for members to speak about the accomplishments of members of their family. This has been very successful and provides an opportunity to get to know each other even better. Our meetings have been professional, enjoyable and most of all succinct which allows for plenty of socializing afterwards. We have had guest speakers who have really made the meetings enjoyable. We had a speaker from Crimestoppers and Dr. Cangelosi gave an excellent speech on the founding of the Washington Artillery. We recently conducted a BBQ Social that was a huge success and we are already seeking an opportunity to have another event.

The City of New Orleans recently removed the cannon and plaques from the Washington Artillery Park across from Jackson Square. All of the aforementioned items were brought to the Jackson Barracks Museum. The cannon will remain at the museum to be displayed and WAVA will be given the plaques. I know that many of you are angered and offended by this action. Remember, that monument did not define who we are; our spirit and legacy lives on in our hearts and through the reverence with which we honor the sacrifices of those who wore the uniform before us. This should make our annual Wreath Laying Ceremony even more poignant and meaningful. The Adjutant General has requested that we remain silent on the issue and we shall because we are consummate professionals who live by a code of conduct.

My challenge to you is to attend our next meeting and re-connect with your fellow red-legs. Furthermore, bring someone with you and that holds true for those of you that are regular attendees; bring someone. We can make our organization flourish again if we all just bring one person to the meeting. I assure you that you will not be disappointed and you will become a regular attendee once again. May God bless the United States of America, Louisiana, the Washington Artillery and you and your loved ones.

 

Try Us!

Brian Champagne

President, WAVA

 

 

 

Secretary, Jay Castagnetta

From the desk of the Secretary

Over the past several months there have been many conversations about growing our membership.  These conversations have ranged from attempting to recruit the younger members of the battalion to trying to recruit the ‘80s and the ‘90s generation.  Roy Broussard received an ETS roster from the active battalion and regularly reaches out to soldiers getting ready to ETS trying to encourage them to join THEIR organization.

The other day I was looking through my email and found an interesting article that addressed some of the same issues we have been discussing.  I thought I would share some of the comments from that article here.

Something’s been taken from you. In the hustle of your 9-5 and family duties, it’s gone missing.  Between paying bills, mowing lawns, and catching up on your favorite show, it’s disappeared.  What we are trying to do with WAVA is about getting that thing back. And if you’re a woman, I'd ask you to keep reading.  This message is not just for your husband, son, brother, or friend.  It’s for the women of the battalion, also.  And their husbands, children, and friends.”

For nearly all of history, men have sung songs before going into battle.  For nearly all of history, men have sat around a campfire to relive the day’s hunt and bond with one another, slept under the stars, pooped in the woods, and chosen challenge.  Men have had a sense of the Divine—and some even walked with their God.  And more and more today, this includes women.

Today, we don’t sing in public.  We don’t have any close friends to sit around the fire with.  We’re intimidated by the sounds of nightfall and the great outdoors and haven’t pushed ourselves in years.  And we’ve lost the connection to our Creator.

So, I pose this thought to you.  Join WAVA.  Bring a friend from your time in the battalion that you still maintain a connection with.  Come to a meeting.  Break bread with old friends.  Share in some libation and sit around the table with old friends and tell the stories of old.  You know the ones.  The stories about how great no one ever really was.  WAVA is all about fellowship.  Come and see for yourself how things have changed.  And you don’t have to come every month.  Just come when you want to, or when you can.

I promise you won’t regret it.

 

Jay Castagnetta

Secretary, WAVA

 

 

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