2017-11-08 / Front Page

Queens Honors Those Who Serve With Veterans Day Parade

By Tony Barsamian & Annette Hanze Alberts

Local veterans marched in the Queens Veterans Day Parade, amid grateful spectators who honored them for their service.Local veterans marched in the Queens Veterans Day Parade, amid grateful spectators who honored them for their service.The Queens Veterans Day Parade, presented by the Middle Village Veterans Day Parade Committee, was held on Sunday, November 5. Commencing on 80th Street, the parade moved along Metropolitan Avenue and concluded with a commemorative ceremony at Christ the King Regional High School.

The Veterans Day Ceremony was hosted by Master of Trinity Lutheran Girl Scouts Troops 4328, 4329, 4422, and 4381 marched in the parade, accompanied by members of the community.

Trinity Lutheran Girl Scouts Troops 4328, 4329, 4422, and 4381 marched in the parade, accompanied by members of the community. Ceremonies Tony Barsamian, publisher of the Queens Gazette. He introduced Salvatore P. Candela who led the Pledge of Allegiance;  Frank DeBiase who sang the National Anthem; and Chaplain Tracy Mike who gave the Invocation. Elected officials who came to honor our veterans included former NYS Senator Serphin R. Maltese, Chair of Christ the King Regional High School Board of Trustees; Congress Member Grace Meng; NYS Senator Joseph P. Addabbo, Jr.; and NYC Council Members Elizabeth Crowley, and Eric Ulrich.

The Grand Marshal was Joseph Martino, a veteran of the U.S. Army who served in World War II. He has been a Commander of the VFW Queens for four years; President of the St. Vincent DePaul Society Central District. He has been a member of the society for 50 years and has received the St. Vincent DePaul Medal of Honor. At the St. John’s Bread and Life soup kitchen in Bedford-Stuyvesant, Martino has been a board member and volunteer since 1985. He continues to volunteer there.

(L. to r.): Congress Member Grace Meng, NYC Council Member Elizabeth Crowley, and NYS Senator Joseph P. Addabbo, Jr.PHOTO TONY BARSAMIAN(L. to r.): Congress Member Grace Meng, NYC Council Member Elizabeth Crowley, and NYS Senator Joseph P. Addabbo, Jr.PHOTO TONY BARSAMIANAccepting the Humanitarian Award on behalf of the George Werst Funeral Home was funeral director David Fitzgerald. The George Werst Funeral Home has been serving the people of Queens and Brooklyn since 1901. In 2009 Werst began coordinating with the American Legion and the Mayor’s Office of Veterans Affairs to conduct funeral services for indigent veterans with military honors, at Calverton National Cemetery. Fitzgerald is Treasurer and Past President of the Kiwanis Club of Glendale.

Christ the King Regional High School Marching Band.Christ the King Regional High School Marching Band.The Guest Speaker was Gold Star Mother Valerie Mustafa. She told those gathered all about her beloved son, U.S. Army veteran, Hassan Sharief Jones, who served in the Army between 2009 and 2014, and had remained as an Army Reservist at Fort Totten. After serving tours in Kuwait and Iraq, he did not survive an accident that erupted into an altercation on the Grand Central Parkway. Mrs. Mustafa said, “He spoke his mind and was not judgemental. He loved all people and was devoted to them. He was a trooper and a volunteer.” She quoted his captain, who said, “ Hassan always did the right thing. He motivated others.”

Many thanks are owed to the Middle Village Veterans Day Parade Committee and Committee Chair Tania B. Broschart, Managing Director of Sterling National Bank. Broschart said, “The Queens Veterans Day parade was, once again, a great success. After eight years the committee continues to organize a great day to honor all our veterans. We thank all of the individuals and organizations who came out to support our mission to celebrate our amazing veterans who have sacrificed so much for this great country.”

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