Kenneth Kramlich of Lodi was elected Department Commander of California for the American Legion, with a membership of 100,000 veterans. There are a total of 2.3 million veterans in the state of California. The American Legion helps all veterans that are in need of help, whether they are a member or not.
Kramlich was born and raised in South Dakota, where he attended school. After high school, he enlisted in the Air Force in 1960. He is a Vietnam veteran. He had basic training at Lackland Air Force Base in San Antonio.
After basic training, he was sent to Fairchild Air Force Base in Spokane, Wash., where he spent the next three years in special maintenance. From there he was sent to Thule Air Force Base in Thule, Greenland for one year. Kramlich was in charge of maintaining all vehicles used by the Army to unload all supplies sent to Thule. He was discharged at McGuire Air Force Base at Trenton, N.J.
Ken is married to Darlene and has a daughter, Tammy, son-in-law, Randy Jones, and two grandchildren, Austin and Brandon. Kramlich worked for Georhing meat company until the company closed, then went to work for General Mills until his retirement.
Kramlich joined the American Legion in 1974 and became active almost immediately. He went through all the chairs before becoming Post Commander. In addition, he was the Post Adjutant for seven years and on the executive board for 15 years. At the district level, he again went through all the chairs before becoming District Commander. At the department level, he was the membership chairman for Area 3 for four years. He was on numerous commissions before becoming Department Vice-Commander.
He is also a member of the Past Commanders Club, Anavicus, Fraternal Order of the Eagles for 37 years, and Loyal Order of the Moose for 12 years. The American Legion is his most cherished organization and he lives it almost 24 hours a day, according to his wife.