Veterans Day Extends to Week of Recognition and Thanks

During the week leading up to Veterans Day, the local veterans of the James R. Hickey Post #120 of the American Legion, Department of New York, were treated to a number of special events, hosted by various appreciative groups.  Palmyra-Macedon schools invited veterans to be honored by their children in various ways: music, art, recognition, food and interviews were themes explored by various grade levels.

On Saturday evening, November 9, the Ladies Auxiliary and the Sons of the American Legion, worked together to prepare and offer a Veterans Day meal that will be long remembered.  Attended by the largest number of Veterans in recent history, the Auxiliary and SAL served nearly one hundred veterans at the Post and also delivered nearly twenty meals to the homes of Veterans unable to come to the Post.  However, set next to the head table was a small table upon which was a single place setting; set there as a reminder of those of our comrades who could not attend.  They are the MIA’s, still missing from our midst.

The entirely home-made meal of pork loin, mashed potatoes, oven-roasted vegetables, applesauce, rolls, and at least eight different desserts, was a wonderful presentation given a standing ovation by the men and women of this Veteran organization.

Highlighting the feast was the key-note speaker, Marine Major William Santmyer, a Pal-Mac graduate who has gone on from our community to serve our nation in the JAG Corps.  He spoke to the assembled group about how, as a JAG member, he had been charged with attempting to bring the “rule of law” to a desolate and difficult area of Afghanistan where the poppy fields are the principal source of income for some, including the Taliban and others.  Working alongside Afghan political and tribal leaders, their National Police, our British allies and with embedded State Department officials and others, Major Santmyer was responsible to make the best of a very difficult situation where the goals of the many groups were not easily identifiable.

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Marine Major William Santmyer and retired Army Lt. Col. Tom Furgeson shared some conversation at the dinner sponsored by the Auxiliary and SAL of the James R. Hickey Post #120, American Legion, Palmyra, NY.

 

As you can see in the picture, Marine Major Santmyer served his command in an exemplary fashion and the medals across his dress blues attest to his success.