35 Legion Parkway
West Seneca,
New York 14224
U.S.A.



Marine Corp. League
Detachment 239


Veterans of Foreign Wars
VFW Post 8113


Navy Seabee Veterans
of America, Island X-5


AMVETS
Post 8113


Harvey D. Morin
VFW Post 2940


82nd Airborne


American Legion
Post 735






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                  West Seneca Joint Veterans Committee


                                                 



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Memorial Day Ceremony – May 28, 2018



Members of Amvets Post 8113
      

Harvey D. Morin, VFW Post 2940

A warm, sunshine-filled morning greeted marchers participating in the annual Memorial Day Parade. Veteran's units from West Seneca, as well as community groups and organizations, marched from Southgate Plaza to Town Hall.


American Legion Post 735 Color Guard
      

Parade float honoring American Veterans

Veterans, town and county politicians, marching units and residents gathered on the front lawn of Town Hall to participate in the Memorial Day Ceremony honoring America's veterans who died in all wars. Veterans groups placed flags at the casket representing America's veterans killed in all wars, while auxiliary units placed flower sprays on the casket.


Committee Chairman Al Olewniczak leads Memorial Program
      

Casket representing America's war dead






Memorial Day Ceremony – May 29, 2017



Paying tribute to America's war dead

Under gray, threatening skies, the West Seneca Joint Veterans Committee held its annual Memorial Day Parade and Ceremony on Monday, May 29, 2017 as the West Seneca veteran's groups gathered at the Southgate Plaza. Joining the veterans were the West Seneca Police Honor Guard, local elected officials and community groups, such as the firefighters, Boy and Girl Scouts, Women's Club, Kiwanis Club and others, as they stepped off at 10:30am to march up Union Road to Town Hall.



Veterans gather for annual Memorial Day Ceremony

The rain held off as residents joined the parade marchers in front of Town Hall to hold the annual Memorial Day Ceremony, honoring all American military men and women who died in America's wars. The guest speaker for this year's ceremony was Russell D. Ward, Senior Vice-Commander of the Military Order of the Purple Heart.


Boy Scouts join the veterans for ceremony

The American national anthem was performed by the West Seneca Central School Marching Band, while the West Seneca Town Band performed the Canadian national anthem and an additional musical selection. Mr. Michael Hart provided vocals on two patriotic songs, while West Seneca East High School senior Matthew Poole recited a poem entitled “Freedom is Not Free”. Refreshments followed after the ceremony at American Legion Post 735.







“Combat Wounded Parking” Sign erected in West Seneca – February 24, 2017



Combat Wounded Parking sign placed next to Walkway of Freedom

There are an estimated 1.8 million Purple Heart recipients, combat wounded service members, who have transitioned back into civilian life. They have made great sacrifices to ensure our freedoms but often go unrecognized. That all changed when the Wounded Warriors Family Support decided to offer Combat Wounded Parking signs, free of charge, to establishments as a way of honoring and recognizing Purple Heart recipients.



Jim Manley, W.S.Veterans Chairman, and Russell Ward, Military Order
of the Purple Heart, unveil Combat Wounded Parking sign

Through the efforts of NYS Assemblyman Michael “Mickey” Kearns, West Seneca Supervisor Sheila Meegan, and West Seneca resident, Frank Calieri, the Town of West Seneca received the first “Combat Wounded Parking” sign in Erie County. The special parking sign was placed next to the Walkway of Freedom in the West Seneca Memorial Park complex. The parking space operates on an honor system and is designated for Purple Heart recipients only.



Councilmember Bill Hanley, Assemblyman Mickey Kearns,
Jim Manley, Supervisor Sheila Meegan, Russell Ward,
Town Clerk Jackie Felser and Frank Calieri

Russell D. Ward from the Military Order of the Purple Heart was a special guest and invited to attend the parking sign dedication. Mr. Ward helped unveil the Combat Wounded Parking sign on behalf of all Purple Heart recipients.



Combat Wounded Parking sign






Veterans Day – November 11, 2016



Members of the 82nd Airborne Unit
      

Marine Corp. League, Detachment 239

Veterans Posts and fellow marchers stepped-off at 10:55AM for the short march to the Walkway of Freedom for the annual West Seneca Veterans Day Ceremony held on Friday, November 11, 2016 sponsored by the West Seneca Joint Veterans Committee. Units from Harvey D. Morin, VFW Post 2940; 82nd Airborne; American Legion Post 735; Marine Corp. League Detachment 239; Veterans of Foreign Wars VFW Post 8113; Navy Seabee Veterans of America, Island X-5; and AMVETS Post 8113 participated in the annual Salute to Veterans.



Members Amvets, Post 8113
      

Veteran's Units form-up for ceremony

Under a gray sky, Chairman Roy Meyers presided over the ceremony honoring the service of all military veterans. Following the ceremony, veterans and guests were invited to Legion Post 735 for coffee, donuts and cookies.



Chairman Roy Meyers, Speaker Jim Manley and Chaplain Ken Herkey





Memorial Day – May 30, 2016



West Seneca Veterans gather for 2016 Memorial Day Ceremony

Under a bright sun-filled morning, the West Seneca veterans and marchers gathered for the annual Memorial Day Parade and Memorial Ceremony. The parade stepped off at 10:30AM from Southgate Plaza, led by the West Seneca Police Honor Guard, followed by the West Seneca Veterans groups, with other community groups forming the remainder of the parade. The parade ended at the Vietnam Memorial where 2016 West Seneca Veterans Committee Chair Roy Meyers conducted the annual Memorial Day Ceremony.



Guest speaker Dean Carroll, Harvey D. Morin Post VFW 2940

The guest speaker this year was Dean Carroll, Quartermaster from the Harvey D. Morin VFW Post 2940. Dean spoke about his experience in the Iraqi War where he was a paramedic.

The Canadian and American anthems were performed by the West Seneca West Marching Band under the direction of Mr. John Blickwedehl. The Horor Guard was supplied by American Legion Post 735 and the bugler was Mr. Jeff Glaub.

Veterans, residents and guests were treated to hot dogs and refreshments after the ceremony at Post 735.






Medal Presentation - July 5, 2015



West Seneca Veterans Committee gather for Ceremony
      

Military Medals awarded to Corporal Robert J. Smith

Forty-eight years after he lost his life while serving in Vietnam, the family of Corporal Robert J. Smith finally received the medals he had earned and died for. The nephews of Robert Smith and other family members gathered at the Walkway of Freedom on Sunday, July 5th at 11:00AM as United States Congressman Brian Higgins, along with West Seneca Supervisor Sheila Meegan, presented the family with the military honors long overdue to Corporal Smith.



Congressman Brian Higgins and West Seneca Supervisor Sheila Meegan
      

Family members and friends of Robert J. Smith

Corporal Robert J. Smith, a West Seneca West graduate, served in “C” Company, 2nd Battalion, 327th Infantry Regiment, 101st Airborne Division when he enlisted in 1966. Sent to serve in the Republic of Vietnam, Corporal Smith was wounded in action, but continued to relay artillery and air strike requests from his platoon leader who was also wounded. Although Smith was mortally wounded by enemy sniper fire on 29 September 1967, his fearless actions enabled his platoon leader to bring in effective supporting fire and destroy the enemy positions.



Congressman Higgins reads Proclamation
      

Family members accept Military Honors

For his heroic devotion to duty and personal courage, the family of Robert J. Smith received the Purple Heart, the Bronze Star with 1 bronze oak leaf cluster with the letter V device, the National Defense Service Medal, the Vietnam Service Medal with 1 bronze service star, the Combat Infantryman Badge 1st Award, the Republic of Vietnam Campaign Ribbon w/Device, the Marksman Badge with Rifle Bar and the Parachutist Badge-basic. Accepting the honorary military medals for Robert J. Smith were his nephews Bill, Jerry and Michael Hughes.



West Seneca Veterans Committee Members form Color Guard

A contingent of West Seneca veterans, lead by West Seneca Veterans Committee Chairman Garnet Wood, along with members of the Navy Seabees Veterans of America (Island X-5), American Legion 735 and the Marine Corps League (Detachment 239) were on hand to provide the Color Guard for the ceremony.






Memorial Day Parade - May 25, 2015



Honoring America's Dead.
      

Members of VFW 2940 and Legion Post 735

Veterans Posts and fellow marchers stepped-off at 10:30AM for the annual West Seneca Memorial Day Parade and Ceremony held on Monday, May 25, 2015. The annual parade, sponsored by the West Seneca Joint Veterans Committee, featured marching units from the various West Seneca veterans groups, as well as civic and community groups. The participating units marched from Southgate Plaza to the Vietnam Memorial in front of the West Seneca Library.


Seabees of America Island X-5 honors all who died while in service
      

Member of the 82nd Airborne pays tribute to the fallen

The marching units gathered in front of the Vietnam Memorial for the annual Memorial Ceremony to honor and remember fellow Americans from all wars who lost their life in the service of our great nation. The West Seneca community and members from the Navy Seabees of America Island X-5, AMVETS 8113, American Legion Post 735, Marine Corps League Detachment 239, VFW Post 8113, and Harvey D. Morin VFW Post 2940 assembled for a memorial ceremony to honor America's fallen. Our guest speaker was Assemblyman Michael Kearns. Hot dogs and refreshments were served at American Legion Post 735 after the ceremony.



Marchers and residents enjoy refreshments after the Memorial Day Ceremony





Veterans Day Ceremony - November 11, 2014



Member Units march to the Walkway of Freedom
         

Units assembled for Veterans Day Ceremony

A warm sun and 60 degree temperatures greeted veterans and residents alike as the West Seneca Veterans Committee celebrated the 42nd Veterans Day Ceremony at the Walkway of Freedom. As fellow veterans gathered in front of the Walkway, the guest speaker was Major Gina Pizziconi-Cupples, USAF, Individual Mobilization Assistant to the Director, Congressional Outreach Division, Pentagon. Major Pizziconi-Cupples has served in Afghanistan as well as several other bases in the Middle East. The Major is currently assigned to the Air Force Base in Niagara Falls.



Chairman Norman Drabek opens ceremony
         

Guest speaker Air Force Major Gina Pizziconi-Cupples addresses veterans

The program featured patriotic songs by Jodi Mucciaccio, while the American Legion Post 735 Honor Guard presented the 21-Gun Salute. Jeff Glaub, once again, sounded "Taps" on his bugle, in rememberance of our fellow veterans who have passed on.



Karen Wright, NYS Director, Honor and Remember Inc. makes presentation
         

Family of Sgt. Frank World accepts Honor and Remember flag

In a special presentation, Claudia Maroney, General Manager of Frontier Communications, and Karen Wright, NY State Director from Honor and Remember, Inc., presented the family of Marine Sergeant Frank World with the Honor and Remember flag. Mrs. Beth World, widow of our fallen comrade, received the flag which represents the gratitude of our nation and recognizes the sacrifice of Sergeant World, who died on the Afghanistan battlefield in 2010.









Memorial Day Parade - May 26, 2014



American Legion Post 735 Marching Unit
      

Marine Corp League, Detachment 239 Marchers


    A warm, sunny morning greeted veterans and their fellow marchers for the annual West Seneca Memorial Day Parade and Ceremony held on Monday, May 26, 2014. Sponsored by the West Seneca Joint Veterans Committee, member veterans groups were joined by civic and community groups as they marched from Southgate Plaza to the Vietnam Memorial in front of the West Seneca Library.



    Marine Corps League Vehicle


    The marching units gathered at the Vietnam Memorial for a Memorial Ceremony honoring and remembering all of our fellow soldiers, sailors, Marines, and airmen who gave their life in all of America's wars to keep us free. The West Seneca community and member veteran units, American Legion Post 735, Marine Corps League Detachment 239, VFW Post 8113, Harvey D. Morin VFW Post 2940, Navy Seabees of America Island X-5 and Amvets 8113 joined with our guest speaker, Lieutenant Jamie-Lynn Winkler, Training Officer for O.H.S.U Portsmouth, Detachment H for the ceremony.







Thank-a-Vet ID Card Event - March 13, 2014



Veterans filling out paperword for ID Cards
      

Smile! You're on camera.


    The West Seneca Veterans Committee and American Legion Post 735 hosted the Erie County "Thank-a-Vet" ID Card sign-up event on Thursday, March 13, 2014. Erie County Clerk Christopher Jacobs brought the County ID event to West Seneca where 92 veterans signed up to receive the County discount card.



    County Clerk Chris Jacobs greets Legionnaire Jerry Johnson
          

    Legion Commander Ron Puckett and fellow veterans.

    Eligible veterans will receive their County Photo ID Card which can be used at approximately 700 participating merchants in Erie County for discounted goods or services. This program also permanently files the veteran's DD-214 Discharge Papers with the County Clerk's office. Should the veteran lose their discharge paper or need additional copies, they will be available through the Erie County Clerk's Office.










Veterans Day Ceremony - November 11, 2013


Committee Chairman Dan Cotter opens program
      

Member units of the West Seneca Veterans Committee

    The annual Veterans Day Ceremony was held under gray skies at 11:00AM on November 11, 2013. Although their was a definite chill in the air, the rain held off, allowing the ceremony to proceed. West Seneca veterans, officials and the public gathered to honor America's veterans.


    American Legion Post 735 Honor Guard
               

    Guest Speaker Assemblyman Mickey Kearns

    The ceremony took place at the Walkway of Freedom in Veterans Memorial Park as the community marked the 95th anniversary of what used to be known as Armistice Day, and the 59th anniversary of what is now known as Veteran's Day. Veterans gathered to honor those who have worn or continue to wear the uniform of our great country. Guest speatker for the ceremony was NYS Assemblyman Michael "Mickey" Kearns representing 142nd Assembly District.


    Amvets and Seabee Member Units
               

    Veterans Day 2013







Memorial Day Ceremony - May 27, 2013


Committee Chairman Dan Cotter
        

Guest speaker Master Gunnery Sergeant Whelan

    The West Seneca Veterans Committee held its annual Memorial Day Parade and Ceremony on Monday, May 27, 2013. Under clear skies and warm temperatures, veterans, police, fire fighters, Boy Scouts, Girl Scouts, marching bands, community organizations and many other participants marched from Southgate Plaza at 10:30 am to the West Seneca Vietnam Memorial.


    VFW 8113 Commander Norm Drabek places American Flag
            

    American flag is raised for ceremony

    A ceremony took place immediately after the parade with commanders from each West Seneca veteran organization placing flags at the ceremonial "gravesite". Auxiliary presidents also participated by placing a spray of flowers on the coffin.

    The guest speaker at this year's ceremony was Marine Master Gunnery Sergeant Thomas Whelan, who is scheduled to retire on June 1st anfter 31 years of service to his country.

    American Legion 735 supplied the Honor Guard for the ceremony and bugler Jeff Glaub played Taps. American Legion Post 735 hosted marchers and residents after the ceremony for hot dogs and refreshments.








Veterans Day Ceremony - November 11, 2012


American Legion Post 735 Color Guard
         

Marine Corp. League, Detachment 239 Color Guard

    The annual Veterans Day Ceremony sponsored by the West Seneca Veterans Committee was held on a beautiful Sunday morning, November 11, 2012 at 11:00AM. All participating units marched from American Legion Post 735 to the Walkway of Freedom for the annual ceremony. Many residents and elected officals came out to support the many veterans who gathered for the 40th Veterans Day Ceremony. The guest speaker this year was Captain Gina M. Pizziconi-Cupples, 914th Logistics Readiness Squadron Commander from the Niagara Falls Air Reserve Station.



    Units Assemble for Ceremony
            

    Guest Speaker: Captain Gina M. Pizziconi-Cupples

    During the ceremony, a bronze plaque was unveiled and dedicated to the Gold Star Mothers and their families honoring their sacrifices and patriotism. Several Gold Star mothers were in attendance and took part in the dedication ceremony. The plaque becomes a permanent part of the West Seneca Veterans Memorial Park and the Walkway of Freedom.



    Gold Star Mothers: Dorothy Meyer, Holly Baker and Betty Jackowiak
           

    Gold Star Mothers Plaque at Walkway of Freedom









Committee Displays at High School Craft Show - October 27, 2012


Bricks and Shirts were the order of the day
      

Tee Shirts and Sweatshirts displayed for sale

    The West Seneca Veterans Committee participated in the West Seneca East Senior High School Arts and Crafts Show on Saturday, October 27, 2012. The show was an excellent venue to showcase the Walkway of Freedom to resident and non-residents. The Committee was able to interact with craft show attendees and promote the sale of bricks for our Walkway.









Memorial Day Ceremony - May 28, 2012

       


    On Monday, May 28, 2012 the West Seneca Veterans Committee held its annual Memorial Day Parade and Ceremony. The weather cooperated with plenty of sunshine, but high humidity. Veterans, police, fire fighter, Boy Scouts, Girl Scouts, marching bands, and many other participants stepped off from Southgate Plaza at 10:30 am and marched up Union Road to the West Seneca Vietnam Memorial.


           

    A ceremony took place immediately after the parade with commanders from each West Seneca veteran organization placing flags at the ceremonial "gravesite". Auxiliary presidents also participated by placing a spray of flowers on the coffin.


           

    The guest speaker at this year's ceremony was West Seneca Supervisor Sheila Meegan and patriotic songs were provided by the West Seneca Middle School Chorus under the direction of Ms. Wendy Piasecki.



    American Legion 735 supplied the Honor Guard for the ceremony and bugler Jeff Glaub played Taps. Marchers and residents were then invited to American Legion Post 735 for hot dogs and refreshments.


           

    West Seneca residents Lenore Leonard, Noreen Gurney, members and friends of the Leonard family and Boy Scouts from Troop 523 honored the military by collecting military patches from around the country and decorated the two trees in front of the Vietnam Memorial. They carefully attached each patch with gold braid to the tree branches to create these unique "Patch Trees".








Purple Heart Ceremony - May 21, 2012

    On Monday, May 21, 2012 in a ceremony held at the West Seneca Veterans Memorial Park, Walkway of Freedom, Congressman Brian Higgins and West Seneca Supervisor Sheila Meegan presented the Purple Heart to Sergeant Carl J. Poydock Jr. for injuries sustained while serving in Vietnam.


    At the podium, left to right, Carl J. Poydock Jr., Congressman Brian Higgins and West Seneca Supervisor Sheila Meegan

    The Purple Heart is a United States military decoration awarded to those individuals who have been wounded or killed by an instrument of war in the hands of the enemy while serving in the United States armed forces. With its forerunner, the Badge of Military Merit, which took the form of a heart made of purple cloth, the Purple Heart is the oldest award that is still given to members of the U.S. military. It is specifically a combat decoration. The award was presented to Sgt. Poydock on the "Walkway" where names of many other Purple Heart recipients are listed.


    Carl J. Poydock Jr. received his Purple Hear medal from Congressman Brian Higgins

    The family and friends of Carl Poydock Jr. were on hand to see Congressman Higgins present the Purple Heart with Bronze Oak Leaf Cluster to Sgt. Poydock indicating he was awarded two Purple Heart awards. Sgt. Poydock also received 2 Purple Heart certificates, an Army Commendation Medal with Letter "V" Device and the National Defense Service Medal.


    Carl J. Poydock Jr. addresses the audience after receiving his Purple Heart

    Sergeant Carl Poydock joined the Army on July 4, 1966 where he served in Vietnam attached to Company D, 1st Battalion, 5th Calvary. On March 15, 1967 Sgt. Poydock's unit was attacked and he sustained leg injuries from enemy gunfire. Sgt. Poydock spent three months in an Army hospital in Japan before returning to duty in Vietnam. On November 12, 1967, while providing security in the rear of a resupply truck, an enemy attack left Sgt. Poydick with several shrapnel wounds. Sgt. Poydock was discharged from the Army on July 4, 1968.


    American Legion Post 735 Honor Guard under the direction of Major Pat Curtin

    Participating in the ceremony were members of the Honor Guard from American Legion Post 735, as well as members from West Seneca Amvets Post 8113 and American Legion Post 735








Corporal Duck - May 2012

Showing that she was a true American duck, this female Mallard duck decided that the Walkway of Freedom was the perfect place to raise her family. "Corporal" Duck bivouacked under a bush and produced a squad of new recruits. Unfortunately "Corporal" Duck weeded out the eggs that could not complete the mission. A squad of nine ducklings survived basic training and were ready to receive orders for permanent party assignment. Under the watchful eye of "Corporal" Duck, issued last-minute flight plans before the ducklings are reassigned to other parts of West Seneca. "Corporal" Duck has since been assigned TDY (Temporary Duck Duty) to Buffalo Creek.

      
       








Successful Veterans Outreach Program - April 28,2012



Veterans enjoyed breakfast courtesy of Rural Metro
      

Veterans has the opportunity to meet with representatives from many agencies

    The Town of West Seneca and the West Seneca Veterans Committee co-sponsored a Veterans Outreach Program on Saturday, April 28, 2012. Representatives from over fifteen various veteran support groups were present to help veterans find real answers to health and benefit concerns, education benefits, recreational activities, and general services.



    New membership forms were available from the American Legion and the Amvets
           

    Representatives of the VA helped veterans with their questions

    The goal of the Veterans Outreach Program was to assist all veterans and their families to make sure they receive the assistance they justly deserve and the full benefits in which they are entitled.












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