Traveling Exhibit Recognizes Local Medal of Honor Recipients
State Senator Patty Ritchie is recognizing local Medal of Honor recipients through a traveling display that will be featured at museums, libraries and other locations throughout Central and Northern New York throughout the coming months.
The display features several St. Lawrence and Oswego County Civil War heroes, a group of little known Jefferson County Medal of Honor recipients who served at Madison Barracks at the turn of the century, and a former member of the 10th Mountain Division from WWII.
“So many brave men and women have put their lives on the line for their country, and the Medal of Honor is the ultimate honor for that service,” said Senator Ritchie. “What many people don’t realize is that our region is home to 45 of New York State’s Medal of Honor recipients. I would like to thank the organizations who will be hosting this exhibit and introducing people in our communities to the heroes who have called our area “home.”
Invites Public to “Send a Touch of Home” to Overseas Troops
State Senator Patty Ritchie today announced that she is once again joining with local radio personality Melody Burns to collect donated Christmas cards to be sent to US soldiers serving overseas through the “Holiday Mail for Heroes” program sponsored by the American Red Cross.
“Last year, Northern and Central New Yorkers donated 2,200 holiday cards to distribute to our service members at military installations, veterans hospitals and other locations,” Senator Ritchie said. “These cards let them know that we truly appreciate their service and their sacrifice.”
“During the holidays, it’s very important that we remember our nation’s heroes who sacrifice so much to protect our nation and our liberties,” said Burns, who hosts a daily radio show on Talk 1300 AM WGDJ in Albany. “I have been promoting this Holiday Mail for Heroes program on my radio show in Albany. Two years ago I collected 1,000 cards. Last year, we collected 6,000. I am very pleased to again partner with Senator Ritchie to reach families across Northern and Central New York.”
Capt. Swenson to Receive Medal of Honor at White House Ceremony on Oct. 15
State Senator Patty Ritchie is announcing that William Swenson, a former Army captain and Fort Drum soldier slated to receive the Medal of Honor next week, is now featured in her “Hometown Heroes” exhibit; a traveling tribute to recipients of the nation’s highest military honor now on display at museums, libraries and other locations throughout Central and Northern New York.
Capt. Swenson will be awarded the Medal of Honor for his bravery during combat in Afghanistan in 2009 on October 15th at a special ceremony being held at the White House.
“Representing our nation’s highest military honor, the Medal of Honor is awarded to those who have gone above and beyond the call of duty to serve their country, and next week, we will pause to thank Capt. Swenson for his courageous actions,” said Senator Ritchie.
Deadline to Send a “Touch of Home” to Troops is November 15th
With Veterans Day just around the corner, St. Lawrence County Clerk Mary Lou Rupp is joining State Senator Patty Ritchie in her campaign to collect holiday cards for the military as part of the “Holiday Mail for Heroes” program.
“The holidays can be a lonely time for our men and women in the military,” said St. Lawrence County Clerk Mary Lou Rupp. “That’s why I am collecting cards at my DMV offices in Canton, Ogdensburg, Massena, Gouverneur and the St. Lawrence County Clerk’s office in the county courthouse .”
The program—which is sponsored by the American Red Cross—aims to collect donated Christmas cards to be sent to US soldiers serving overseas. This year, Senator Ritchie is also once again joining with Ogdensburg native and radio host Melody Burns to collect holiday greetings. Last year, Senator Ritchie was able to collect 2,200 holiday cards from Central and Northern New Yorkers to distribute to service members at military installations, veterans hospitals and other locations.
From friends and family to good food and gifts, for many people, the holidays are the happiest time of the year. However, for our brave troops serving overseas, they can be the loneliest.
In an effort to send a “touch of home” to our troops, I’m one again calling on Central and Northern New Yorkers to participate in my “Holiday Mail for Heroes” program. The program—which is sponsored by the American Red Cross—aims to collect donated Christmas cards to be sent to US soldiers serving overseas.
This year, for the second year in a row, I’m partnering up with Ogdensburg native and radio personality Melody Burns to collect holiday greetings. Last year—thanks to many of you—we were able to collect 2,200 cards to distribute to service members at military installations, veterans hospitals and other locations.
Bill Cosponsored by Senator Ritchie Named for Slain Fort Drum Officer
State Senator Patty Ritchie has announced that a bill she cosponsored to create the “Lt. Colonel Todd Clark Memorial Flag Presentment Program” has been signed into law.
The measure, which was named after a 10th Mountain Division officer from Evans Mills who was killed earlier this year in Afghanistan, would provide that every family of a fallen service member be given US and New York State flags that flew over the State Capitol at half-staff in their honor.
“By lowering flags to half-staff, we pay tribute to the tremendous sacrifices made by the brave men and women who serve our country,” said Senator Ritchie.
“This new law allows us to say thank you, and express our sympathy in a very small way to the families and the loved ones of those who have given their lives for the protection of our freedom.”
The Governor has ordered the flags lowered at the Capitol and every state government building at least five times this year, and 12 times in 2012, usually to honor a fallen service member, but also in the case of certain dignitaries, deceased government leaders and national tragedies.
State Senator Patty Ritchie today announced that she has collected more than 7,800 cards to be sent to US soldiers through the “Holiday Mail for Heroes” program sponsored by the American Red Cross.
Cards—which were donated by schools, local businesses, community groups, and individuals as well as County Clerk’s offices—will be distributed to service members at military installations, veterans hospitals and other locations.
State Senator Patty Ritchie visited Fort Drum recently, to attend a deployment ceremony for roughly 1,000 10th Mountain Division headquarters and sustainment brigade soldiers. The ceremony marked the beginning of a yearlong deployment to Afghanistan.
(Senator Ritchie is pictured in the above photo with Lt. Gov. Robert Duffy and Maj. Gen. Stephen Townsend)
Measure to Expand Business Opportunities for Veterans
State Senator Patty Ritchie has announced she is cosponsoring a measure that supports the brave men and women of our armed forces by giving preference for state contracts to businesses owned by disabled veterans.
The measure, (S.2803-B) also known as the “NY Jobs for Heroes” program, is an initiative that would amend the executive law to require state agencies to set a goal of awarding 3 percent of contracts to businesses that are owned by service-disabled veterans.
“After traveling the world in support of our country, many of our veterans decide to settle in New York State—especially in the region that surrounds Fort Drum,” said Senator Ritchie.
“Service-disabled veterans have made the ultimate sacrifice in putting their lives on the line to protect our freedom. The very least we can do to recognize them for their contributions is to stand with them and provide them with the support they need to succeed in their post-military life.”