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World War I, live


A group of re-enactors resembling this World War I squad will appear at William J. Hocking Post 91's commemoration event in Wharton, N.J., on April 1. (Photo via Amery Vasso)

This April marks the 100th anniversary of the United States’ entry into World War I – an event that held monumental changes for the country both during and after the war. William J. Hocking Post 91 (http://centennial.legion.org/new-jersey/post0091) in Wharton, N.J., will bring those changes to life with a special event on April 1 at its post hall.

According to post adjutant Amery Vasso, the commemoration event will feature artifacts from the time period, historians giving presentations on what the war was like for Wharton and New Jersey, and re-enactors interacting with attendees. Also featured will be New Jersey military units that saw action in the war and are still active today.

Vasso says the purpose of the event is threefold. In addition to observing the U.S. entry into the war, he says, “we feel that this is a logical starting point for our kickoff of the American Legion Centennial Celebration.” Another focus will be the war as the catalyst for the Legion’s formation in its aftermath, and another the story of the post’s namesake. William J. Hocking, a Wharton native, was killed on Nov. 1, 1918, in the Ardennes in France.

Learn more about the post, and the commemoration event, at www.whartonlegion91.org.