NYACK, NY - Senator Elijah Reichlin-Melnick hosted his first annual Veterans Breakfast and “Veteran All-Star” awards at the Nyack Seaport on Tuesday morning. The event featured Ulster County Executive Pat Ryan, a West Point graduate who served two combat tours in Iraq as an Army intelligence officer, as keynote speaker. Over 150 veterans and members of veteran support agencies were in attendance to enjoy a free breakfast provided by Senator Reichlin-Melnick, with sponsorship from Nyack Ridge Nursing Home, Procida Funding and Advisors, and Reps for Responders.
Senator Elijah Reichlin-Melnick (D-Rockland/Westchester) said, “Veterans of the U.S. military are prepared to give everything they have to protect us, including paying the ultimate sacrifice. Today, we gave a small token of appreciation back to local veterans at my first annual Veterans Breakfast at The Nyack Seaport. The only way we can match the dedication and sacrifice made by these veterans is to provide them and their families with the healthcare, support, and benefits they have earned and deserve, and I am proud to be fighting for them every day in the New York State Senate.”
The Veterans Breakfast began with a singing of the National Anthem by Nicholas Behson, a junior at Nyack High School. Senator Reichlin-Melnick then introduced County Executive Ryan who delivered a stirring speech about his own story of service, the shortcomings of the veterans affairs system in this country and state, and how we can come together across political divides to support our nation’s active duty military and veterans and build a stronger democracy in America.
Senator Reichlin-Melnick then honored five local veterans as the 2021 “Veteran All-Stars”: Rockland County Legislator Phil Soskin, Thomas Bradway Jr., Anngela Vassar Cooper, Howard Goldin, and John Gray. Additionally, the Senator recognized Dr. Kenneth Nurse as the 2021 New York State Senate Veteran Hall of Fame inductee for Senate District 38. More information about the Veterans Hall of Fame award can be found at: https://www.nysenate.gov/profiles/2021/elijah-reichlin-melnick/kenneth-nurse.