A painting of World War I soldier Albert Clinton Wunderlich was presented to Lansdowne borough at its recent Council business meeting last Wednesday.
Matt Schultz, of the Historic Lansdowne Theater, presented the painting with current Lansdowne Albert Clinton Wunderlich American Legion Post 65.
Mayor Anthony Campuzano said the presentation was done at the business meeting, rather than the general meeting, because of scheduling conflict.
“We want to do it, because it’s a great event; very significant for Lansdowne and its sense of history,” he said. “It is also in honor of Veterans Day.”
Schultz and veterans Larry Smalley, Larry Mathers, Richard Smalley and Bill Jillson, from Post 65, presented the painting.
“We’re honored that Matt was willing to turn this painting over to the borough where we will keep it safe,” Campuzano said. “I’m very happy and honored to say that we’re going to display it downstairs in the centennial room where the Legion meets every month to honor them, their service and all the men and women who served our country.”
Most of all, the painting honors Wunderlich who, Campuzano said, gave his life for Lansdowne residents.
Schultz explained that Wunderlich was one of the first Lansdowne residents killed in World War I.
At the conclusion of the war, Lansdowne got together and decided to establish the American Legion post for those who died in that conflict and to advocate for veterans’ rights following the war.
The painting resided in the American Legion Post until the building was sold in the late 1950s, Schultz said.
Wunderlich’s father commissioned the painting, and it was passed from commander-to-commander over the years after the original Legion post was sold.
Schultz said 15 years ago, the post was concerned their numbers were dwindling and they would go out of business. Then-Commander Mike Shields, also a WWI veteran, and the late Lee McDonald, another officer at the post, invited Schultz to meet them at Arlington Cemetery where he was presented with the painting.