Battle of the Bulge group among largest contingent of single campaign veterans; First multi-member group to receive honor
Senator Patty Ritchie (R-C, Heuvelton) has named the Oswego County “Battle of the Bulge” Veterans to the New York State Senate’s Veterans Hall of Fame.
It’s the first time a group of veterans has been named collectively to the Hall of Fame, which was created to honor and recognize outstanding veterans from the Empire State who have distinguished themselves both in military and civilian life.
“The Oswego County ‘Battle of the Bulge’ Veterans served their nation when they were needed most, and continued that legacy throughout decades of service to their communities,” Senator Ritchie said.
“Brothers in combat, they still band together to perform educational service for their neighbors and friends, sharing their stories and military traditions with new generations. Their sacrifice, patriotism, service and dedication to community and country have earned them a place in the New York State Senate Veterans Hall of Fame,” Senator Ritchie said.
The Oswego County Battle of the Bulge Veterans helped beat back Hitler’s Ardennes Offensive during the winter of 1944-45, a campaign that Winston Churchill called “undoubtedly the greatest American battle of the war.”
It was also the bloodiest—with 89,500 casualties.
“I would like to thank Senator Patty Ritchie for selecting my group to be recognized as one of our outstanding group of veterans in the State of New York,” said John M. Canale, chairman of the Oswego County Battle of the Bulge Veterans, who will represent the group at a ceremony to be held in Albany on June 14, Flag Day.
The Oswego County “Battle of the Bulge” Veterans is among the largest gathering of soldiers from a single engagement in the nation. Today, the group also includes veterans from Afghanistan, Korea and Vietnam. Members include:
SSgt. John M. Canale, Chairman
Pvt. Harold Blake
PO2 Fred Crisafulli
Cpl. Bill Hogan
W.O.J.G Len Lambert
Pfc. Bill Leighton
Sgt. Fred Lockwood
Pfc. Len Maniccia
Tec5 Alfred Myhill
Pfc. Bob Ochsenbern
SSgt. Phil Pecora
Sfc. Charles Phallen
Justin Baum (Afghanistan)
QM2 Alex Beattle (Korea)
Sgt. Myles Becky (Vietnam)
Tom Halpin (Korea)
SSgt. Matt Bush*
The New York State Senate Veterans Hall of Fame, created in 2005, contains biographies of veterans across our State who have been nominated by their Senators, and can be viewed online by visiting http://www.nysenate.gov/veterans-hall-of-fame.