The new Darrell Wilson American Legion Post No. 537 is named for a longtime Mooresville resident, businessman, decorated Army officer and supporter of Mooresville.
"My dad was foremost a loving and devoted husband, father and grandfather. He was a well-loved businessman of Mooresville," said Kyle Wilson, son of Darrell Wilson and an officer of the new Post.
Post Commander Todd Waugh echoed those sentiments.
"Darrell Wilson was a role model for all of us and especially for the youth that are part of our projects," said Waugh. "What better person could we have as the name of our Post?"
Wilson was born in Boger City on March 30, 1933, and graduated from Mooresville High School in 1951.
He attended Gardner Webb University and graduated from Wake Forest University.
He entered the Army in 1953 in the 1st Company 28th Infantry Division. He trained to be a sniper for the Korean War and was stationed at Camp Hale in Colorado. From 1956 until 1970 he worked in the planning division of Burlington Industries in both Lexington, N.C., and South Boston, Va. He returned home in 1970 and owned Wilson Auto Parts in downtown Mooresville until 1995.
He served as a Mooresville Commissioner 1976 to 1995, almost 20 years. He was a deacon of the First Baptist Church in Mooresville.
In 1996, he was named Outstanding Citizen of the Year by the Mooresville Chamber of Commerce. He served on the Gardner Webb University Alumni Board of Directors, ABC Board of Mooresville, and was president of the Board of Directors locally for First Union National Bank.
For all of Darrell Wilson's activities and support of his hometown of Mooresville the new American Legion Post No. 537 is named in his honor. Wilson died in 2003 at age 69.
Now that the new post is organized, the members are seeking their own headquarters building. They are looking for either an existing building or property where the post can construct its own building.
For the time being they can meet at the Mooresville Armory, but having their own building would allow them to build or remodel to meet their needs for meetings, office space, dances and other social events.
The first step toward that new building goal is fundraising. The post is holding a Port-A-Pit BBQ dinner 1-7 p.m. June 10 at the old Mooresville Middle School, 160 Magnolia Ave. A Friday meal gives the opportunity for businesses to treat office workers. Meals area available for take-home dinners as well.
Tickets are $8.50 each.
Each ticketholder will receive a certificate for free baseball batting practice. This will help promote its youth baseball project.
The post is involved with youth baseball teams and games. Youth aged 14-19 years can become involved with either the junior or senior teams and play until early July. The American Legion baseball teams will be called the Mooresville Post 537 Legends.
The post received its official charter April 25,with 22 members. Officers are Todd Waugh, commander; Eddie Scott and Kyle Wilson, vice commanders; Clay White, finance officer; Robert Bensley, adjutant; and Scott Brawley and Leverne Jackman, sergeants at arms. Gary Ballard is the athletic director and Marquist Morgan is the historian and photographer.