DAY, NY -- Senator Jim Tedisco (R,C-Saratoga Springs) today posthumously honored the late U.S. Air Force veteran Richard Traeger of the Saratoga County town of Day for his service to our country during the Cold War with the New York State Senate Liberty Medal, the Senate’s highest award.
Tedisco presented the Liberty Medal to Traeger’s widow, Judith, at Day Town Hall and was joined by Saratoga County Veterans Services Agency Director Frank McClement, Town of Day Supervisor Diana Edwards, Former Town Supervisor Mary Ann Johnson, and Town Councilman George Lembo. McClement presented Traeger with a U.S. Flag that flew over the U.S. Capitol in Washington, D.C., and over the Saratoga County Office Building in Ballston Spa for the past 30 days.
“I was proud to salute and pay tribute to the memory of an American Hero today, Richard Traeger of the town of Day, with the New York State Senate’s Liberty Medal, our highest honor, for his dedicated and noble service to our country as a member of the U.S. Air Force during a very precarious period in the Cold War. Richard’s efforts to maintain our strategic bombers helped keep the peace and protect our very way of life. May God Bless Richard Traeger and all our veterans,” said Senator Jim Tedisco.
Richard Traeger entered the U.S. Air Force in 1960 and served as a Personal Equipment Specialist in the 814th Combat Support Group, 99th Bombardment Wing. He was tasked with providing and keeping available necessary supplies for the operation of the base and the 99th Bomb Wing’s mission, as part of the U.S. Strategic Air Command.
Traeger’s job was to always keep bombers and tankers on ground alert and armed with nuclear weapons that could be deployed at a moment’s notice 24-hours-a-day.
Richard was honorably discharged from the Westover Air Force Base at the Rank of Airman 2nd Class in 1963 and awarded the Good Conduct Medal.
After his service to our nation, Richard married Judith and together they had 3 children.
He worked for Niagara Mohawk Power Company for over 30 years as a gas mechanic and enjoyed hunting and was a longtime member of the Hadley Hunting Club. He was also an active member in the Rotterdam Elks, the Hadley American Legion and was a member of the Town of Day Planning Board for 20 years.