Battalion Sergeant Major Armando “Chick” Galella was born in 1921 and enlisted in the U.S. Army in 1940. After training, he was assigned to the 443rd Signal Corps at Hickam Air Force Base and is a survivor of the December 7, 1941 attack on Pearl Harbor.
SGM Galella went on to serve five years in the Pacific Theater, earning the highest rank an enlisted man can achieve, Battalion Sergeant Major. He received the Bronze Star Medal for Meritorious Service and bravery in the Battle of Okinawa, “the largest amphibious invasion of the Pacific campaign and the last major campaign of the Pacific War.”
SGM Galella’s service to our country is only equaled by his service to our local community. A lifelong resident of North Tarrytown, now Sleepy Hollow, SGM Galella has served in many civic and social capacities, including as a Village Trustee and as Deputy Mayor, Fire Commissioner for the Village, and as a member of Pocantico Hook and Ladder Company. He has also served as the Grand Marshal for the Sleepy Hollow Columbus Day Parade in 2002 and the Sleepy Hollow St. Patrick’s Day Parade in 2018.
In 1999, SGM Galella petitioned the Village to rename a waterfront park in Sleepy Hollow to “Horan’s Landing,” in honor of his friend killed in the Pearl Harbor attack. John J. Horan was the first resident of the Village to be killed in WWII. An American flag and Mr. Horan’s photo are now proudly displayed at the park.
At 97 years young, SGM Galella remains an active and essential member of the Sleepy Hollow community and beyond.
SGM Galella’s beloved wife, Leda, passed away in September 2015 after 65 years of marriage. He has two sons, three grandchildren, and four great-grandchildren. Armando Galella is an icon and inspiration to all who meet him.