The following history piece is provided by Lee’s Summit primo historian (and our Comrade), Ken Davis:
POST 5789 COMMANDERS:
After it was chartered in 1946, the first order of business for the new VFW Post was the election of officers. Don Knight, a World War One veteran, was chosen by his comrades to be the charter commander. Don operated a drug store at the Northeast corner of 3rd and East Main Streets in downtown Lee’s Summit. After his term of office ended, Don passed the torch to the greatest generation of World War Two veterans who , with a few exceptions, served as post commanders for the next 25 years. In April 1974, Ken Davis was the first Vietnam veteran to be chosen as Commander of Post 5789. Most of the comrades for the next thirty years were Vietnam veterans. There were some exceptions, of course. We have had commanders who served in Desert Storm, Panama, Kuwait, Iraq, Afghanistan, etc. Most of our leadership now is post-Vietnam veterans. To date, Pam Walsten has been our only female veteran to serve a Post Commander. If you are curious about who our Post Commanders were, check out the photo gallery in the lobby of our Post Home at 329 SE Douglas Street. Across the hallway from the Commander photos is the gallery of the Past Presidents of our Auxiliary. (Note: the current Commander is a Veteran of the Vietnam War as well as Panama, and is looking forward to being replaced by one of our younger Veterans next year!)
(The following is from Comrade Ken Davis 10-13-20 )
POST 5789 HISTORY
After chartering in January 1946 and electing a corps of officers, Post 5789 needed to find a place to hold its meetings. For the first three years, they held their meetings at the Odd Fellows Lodge hall, and in the basement of Commander Knight's drug store. In February 1949, the Post purchased the storefront building at 20 W. 3rd St. Known as the Martin Welch building. It was built in the 1880's. The newspaper article about this move by the Post said that the first floor would be used as a meeting room with club rooms (canteen) on the second floor.. With sweat equity from the members, the building was made ready for use by the Post, and would become their home for the next 43 years. In 1970 downtown Lee's Summit underwent a makeover known as Urban Renewal with low cost loans to he property owners for improvements to their buildings. Through this program Post 5789 had up-grades to the restrooms, paneling of the first-floor meeting room with a drop ceiling, central air conditioning, and a new buff brick façade on the front of the building.
By the late 1980's, the Post was in need of more space for its meetings and activities. They investigated at least a half dozen locations to either purchase or build a new Post Home. Under the leadership of Command Bob Newell, the Post finally made the decision to purchase the existing building located at 329 SE Douglas Street. This building would require a complete makeover before the Post could move in. The Post continued to meet at 20 W 3rd Street until the new location was ready for move in. Many Comrades assisted in the rehabing of the new facility. We moved in to our new home in April 1992. Commander Newell was an architect, and designed the building with the needs of the Post in mind. The largest room in the building is Herbert W. Irwin Hall which is named for the then Quartermaster General of the VFW who was a Post member and financial contributor to our new home. The Post meeting room is named for Post Commander Elmer Kreeger who played a large part in the success of our Post. The 5789 Auxiliary chose to name their meeting room for Past President Pat Stevens who was very active in promoting and conducting the programs of the Auxiliary.
Our Post Home is a well used building by many members of the community in addition to the Post and Auxiliary. It is a landmark building in downtown Lee's Summit.