Military Group Primed to Celebrate: Readiness Organization Honors Krulak, Blair for Longtime Effort on Behalf of Personnel Issues

Article excerpt

Overcast skies and drizzle didn't deter celebrants coming out Wednesday night to show their support for an organization that focuses on military personnel issues and honor some distinguished stalwarts at the fourth annual Center for Military Readiness reception.

Given the festive mood on the fifth floor of the Reserve Officers Association of the United States building, you would have thought those attending had just returned from a military victory.

Nearly 100 well-wishers, including Rep. Floyd D. Spence, South Carolina Republican, and Sen. Wayne Allard, Colorado Republican, gathered for the event.

CMR President Elaine Donnelly was praised for her efforts to bring attention to military personnel issues, including coed basic training, sexual misconduct and double standards within the armed forces.

For Mrs. Donnelly, people make the difference.

"Weapons, planes, ships don't defend the country. The people in uniform do," she said.

"There seems to be a morale problem [in the military]. This group is trying to counteract that," said CMR supporter Josie Toth Linen.

Dressed in a bright-red power suit, Mrs. Donnelly thanked her many friends and supporters, some of whom had traveled from as far as London to attend the event.

This year, the nonpartisan public policy group honored retired Gen. Charles C. Krulak, former Marine Corps commandant; Anita K. Blair, chairman of the Congressional Commission on Military Training and Gender-Related Issues; retired Marine Corps Lt. …