Wednesday, March 23, 2016
Rochester Vietnam Vets Memorial Impresses State Delegation
American Legion state leaders made official visits to Steuben and Monroe Counties in the 7th District, March 19-22.
Saturday’s swing brought them to Steuben County’s Rosell-McDaniels Post 407 in Hammondsport for lunch, followed by a tour of the Glenn H. Curtis Aviation Museum and finally a diner in their honor at Charles E. Westcott Post 173 in Bath.
On Sunday Monroe County Legion treated them to a tour of the Greater Rochester Vietnam Veterans Memorial in Rochester and then dinner at Rick’s Prime Rib House in the suburb of Gates.
The dinner attracted Legion Family members – the Legion, the Auxiliary, the Sons of the American Legion (SAL) and American Legion Riders — from across the county and the 7th District.
SAL Detachment Commander Joseph L. SantaCroce Jr. and Department Auxiliary President Janet Mahoney described the memorial tour as “outstanding.” Department Commander James Yermas echoed that sentiment and noted that the tour also was emotional for Vietnam vets like himself.
“When you walk down that path and read all the names (of area veterans killed in action), it’s tough to go through it.” The winding path is lined with stanchions, or bollards, bearing the names of the fallen, along with stone markers telling the history of the Vietnam war.
“You should be proud of what you have here in Rochester,” Yermas told banquet attendees.
The dinner was hosted by William Doud Post 98, which meets at the restaurant. Interestingly, Post Commander Chuck Zeiner explained, the facility was originally the post home before it was sold to restaurateurs.
One might ask whether post members that pray together, stay together – because among the dinner attendees were three people from Chili Post 1830 who all hold chaplaincy positions on the district level. Connie Corwin is 7th District Legion chaplain, Sharon Beeke is 7th District Auxiliary chaplain and Jim Daly is 7th District SAL chaplain.
There were signs of an active Legion Family. For example, Wayne County Auxiliary President Maret Rose was accompanying her husband, 7th District SAL Commander Charlie Rose, on the March visitation swing through the district.
They have been very involved in Legion activities and have been moving up the ranks in both organizations. “We’re both going through it at the same time so it’s working out well,” Charlie said. “Yeah!” Maret concurred.
ACTIVE 7TH DISTRICT SONS
The 7th District SAL, by the way, is sponsoring a big “welcome home” event May 22 for post-9/11 veterans and their families, with the assistance of VA Medical Centers in Bath and Canandaigua.
“We’re expecting at least 300 people,” Charlie said.
The event will be held at Johnson-Costello Post 355 in the Yates County village of Penn Yan, in conjunction with Armed Forces Day and SAL Veterans Appreciation Day.