Make Reservations for Dinner and Help to Honor American Troops
Newburgh's own Warren Craig reflects on World War II, the price of freedom and what you can do to Honor American Troops. The year was 1942, Nazi Germany was on the rise and extermination camps were being implemented across Europe. New Zealand and Australia declared war on Thailand and The Battle of Midway famously raged in the South Pacific between the Japanese and the Americans. Warren Craig, just 18 years old was enlisting in the service. Voluntarily. Over the next 3 years he would serve 4 tours, see 4 continents and narrowly survive death at least three times. He tearfully recalls those brushes with death and the friends that didn't make it. Craig, a decorated war hero now carries a purple heart and a ribbon adornment representing the action he saw in Africa, Europe, the South Pacific. He has been featured in countless publications and recognized for his efforts in times of war and peace. But, he can't shake the memories of the shark infested waters he treaded in for 14 hours. And, he doesn't want you to forget it either.
Freedom is not free, as they say. What does that mean exactly? If you have family active in the military it's a reality you may know very well. Steve Nicoli, President of HonoringAmericanTroops.com, weighs in.
What distinguishes military families is the constant threat of a loved one being deployed. Essentially the goodbye factor. Military families are apart most of the time, it's the military life. Ironically, their motivation for serving is usually to support the family and then they're having the say goodbye to their family in order to serve their country. Sometimes, that means not coming home.
Nicoli is doing everything he can to Honor American Troops. Right down to stopping them in the street to make mention of his gratitude. Since 2003 he has personally mailed out 2,000 care packages to military stationed overseas. Formerly a soldier himself, Nicoli served as a paratrooper from 1997-2000 in the 82nd airborne out of Fort Bragg. His website is a call-to-action, a window into the demands of military life, and an avenue for contributing to the well being of our soldiers past and present.
His latest venture is a World War II honoree dinner. Guest speakers will include retired Lieutenant Colonel, Senator William Larkin who saw combat in World War II in the Philippines operation and former Congressman Benjamin Gilman. Gilman served in the United States Army Corps from 1942 until 1945 during World War II. How you can get involved: Mark your calendar for Friday, November 4th. Call the veteran in your life and make dinner plans.
Dinner will be at the prestigious Hotel Thayer in West Point. Reservations need to be made by October 20th. Dinner is $50 for civilians/$30 Military. If you can't make it, but want to help please know that donations are also being accepted. Anyone who sponsors a World War II veteran will be added to Nicoli's website. Sponsorship is $50. The dinner will be an opportunity to honor these distinguished men of service and also fund a Spring 2012 trip to the Washington DC World War II Memorial for a few Hudson Valley World War II veterans. Honoring American Troops needs your help! Short on cash? Write a letter, thank a solider. Contact Steven Nicoli Call : (845) 728-9659E-mail : HonoringTroops@aol.com Visit: http://www.honoringamericantroops.com/ww2dinner/