Milestone: Sequim women lauded with ‘Women in American History’ honor

Two Sequim women, Steph Ellyas and Lyn Fiveash, were awarded “Women in American History” award from the National Society of the American Revolution at the Michael Trebert DAR Membership meeting on March 21.

Ellyas and Fiveash were honored for their three-year effort to provide a free Clallam County Veterans Clothing Closet.

Because March is officially “Women’s History Month”, the emphasis of Women in American History is on the role of women, past and present, in American history, Michael Trebert Chapter members noted. The club selected these women from Clallam County to honor.

Three years ago, the local veterans’ Stand-Down discontinued used clothing offerings, so Ellyas and Fiveash stepped up as a way to say “thank you” to veterans. They found an accessible county building to organize and created a free “store” for veterans, families and the only women veterans room on the Olympic Peninsula, located at the NW Veteran Resource Center in Port Angeles.

The Clothing Closet averages 400 veterans visits per year, Michael Trebert Chapter members note. All veterans have access to needed seasonal clothing, coats, canned foods, toiletries, shoes, boots and waterproof sleeping bags.

The two women come from a long-line of past and current military family members, and comment, “it’s a tangible way to say thank you for veterans’ service, sacrifice, and commitment to the preservation of our nation’s freedom.”

Judy Tordini, regent of Michael Trebert Chapter, said the two women’s names are now recorded in Washington, D.C., as the first women in Clallam County to receive this national award.

Levi Douglas, Clallam County Veterans’ program coordinator, and Holly Rowan, president of the Clallam County Veterans Association presented Ellyas and Fiveash with “Women in American History” medals.

The National Society Daughters of the American Revolution was founded in 1890 to preserve the memory and spirit of those who contributed to securing American independence.

DAR (Daughters of the American Revolution) is a nonprofit, nonpolitical women’s service organization with more than 185,000 members in about 3,000 chapters worldwide. Any woman 18 years or older, regardless of race, religion or ethnic background, who can prove lineal descent from a patriot of the American Revolution is eligible for membership. DAR members “passionately carry out the timeless missions of promoting historic preservation, education and patriotism.”