2011 Honor a Veteran Archives

HAV - 2011

Christopher Calvano, US Marine Corps

Albany County Executive Mike Breslin, Congressman Paul Tonko and the Honor-A-Veteran Committee commemorated the life of World War II veteran Christopher N. Calvano at a ceremony on Monday, November 7, 2011 at the Joseph E. Zaloga Post in Albany.

Calvano was born in Amsterdam on July 4, 1918 and attended Amsterdam City Schools. A talented violinist and musician, he won the musical award at his 1936 high school graduation.

On July 13, 1944, Calvano entered the United States Marine Corps and was stationed in the South Pacific. He served as a bandsman. After his military service, he remained active with the veteran community and was recognized for his efforts with the awards of NYS Marine of the Year, National Top League Recruiter and VFW All States Commander. He served as a past commander of the Albany Marine Corps League and its honor society as a pedigree Devil Dog. He also served as a commander of the VFW and a member of the Weininger American Legion Post.

Calvano worked for General Electric for 35 years as a purchasing agent. He was married to his wife, Frances, for 69 years and had two daughters, Helena and Christine.   

The Honor-A-Veteran ceremony is held every first Monday of the month to honor a deceased veteran of the community.

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Henry J. Rosenzweig, US Army

Albany County Executive Mike Breslin, Congressman Paul Tonko and the Honor-A-Veteran Committee commemorated the life of World War II veteran Henry J. Rosenzweig at a ceremony on Monday, October 3, 2011 at the Joseph E. Zaloga Post.

Rosenzweig was one of four sons of Mary Stadter and John Rosenzweig. Three of the sons, including Henry, served in World War II.  Prior to entering the U.S. Army, he worked for the Department of Public Works in the City of Albany. He was a talented baseball player and, being left-handed, he was known among his friends as Lefty.

Rosenzweig entered the United States Army on June 27, 1942. In May of 1944, he went overseas to England and joined the push across France. He was hit with shrapnel in the side and hit again in the left arm during a battle and was taken Prisoner of War by the Germans. While prisoner, his arm had to be removed.  
 
Upon returning home from his service, Rosenzweig worked for the U.S. Postal Service.

The Honor-A-Veteran ceremony is held every first Monday of the month to honor a deceased veteran of the community.

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Harry Reynders, US Army

Albany County Executive Mike Breslin, Congressman Paul Tonko and the Honor-A-Veteran Committee commemorated the life of World War II veteran Harry W. Reynders, Jr. at a ceremony on Tuesday, September 6, 2011 at the Joseph E. Zaloga Post in Albany.

Reynders honorably served his country as a member of the United States Army during World War II from July 1943 to August 1946 when he was honorably discharged at the rank of Captain. After his military service, he worked at McManus and Riley, a downtown Albany's men's clothing store, ultimately becoming its president until the store was closed. Reynders went on to serve as treasurer for Rose and Kiernan Insurance Company of Albany for many years. 

Reynders was also very active in his church and community. He was a lifelong parishioner of the First Lutheran Church and served as a deacon and lay pastor. He was also a member of a number of community organizations, including the Rotary Club, University Club and the former Aurania Club. He was a devoted family man, and was married to his wife Marjorie for 54 years. They raised two sons, Richard and Jeffrey, and had four grandchildren.

The Honor-A-Veteran ceremony is held every first Monday of the month to honor a deceased veteran of the community.

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E. Joseph Cassarino, US Army

Albany County Executive Mike Breslin, Congressman Paul Tonko and the Honor-A-Veteran Committee commemorated the life of World War II veteran E. Joseph Cassarino at a ceremony on Monday, August 1, 2011 at the Joseph E. Zaloga Post in Albany.

Cassarino was born on September 17, 1914 in Hartford, Connecticut. In 1934, he joined the Civilian Conservation Corps, a public work relief program created by President Roosevelt's New Deal during the Great Depression. Cassarino served as a mechanic in the Connecticut National Guard from 1936 to 1939, obtaining the rank of Corporal.

Cassarino enlisted in the United States Army in 1943. Serving with the Battery "B" 473rd Anti-Aircraft Artillery AW Battalion as a mechanic, he saw combat in Rhineland, Ardennes and Central Europe. He was discharged on March 9, 1946, obtaining the rank of Staff Sergeant. 

Shortly after his discharge, Cassarino moved to Albany, where he worked for American Locomotive as an inspector before being employed for many years at the United States Postal Service. He was active in his church and was a member of the Oppenheim VFW Post #1019 and the Colonie Elks. He was married to his wife Winifred for 42 years and was the proud father of two children, Alan and Lynn.

The Honor-A-Veteran ceremony is held every first Monday of the month to honor a deceased veteran of the community. Nomination forms and more information can found on the Albany County Veterans Bureau website at www.albanycounty.com/veterans or by contacting the Veterans Bureau Director MaryAnn Jones at (518) 447-7710.

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Leo McCarthy, US Marine Corps & Michael Jacon, US Marine Corps

Albany County Executive Mike Breslin, Congressman Paul Tonko and the Honor-A-Veteran Committee commemorated the lives of Korean War veteran Leo McCarthy and his son-in-law Vietnam War veteran Michael Jacon at a ceremony on Tuesday, July 5, 2011 at the E.T. Ruane American Legion Post in Cohoes.

McCarthy was born in Cohoes and attended Cohoes Catholic schools. A proud veteran of the U.S. Marine Corps, he served his country during the Korean Conflict. McCarthy was employed for many years as a sheet metal worker with the Sheet Metal Workers Union Local 83 in Albany. He was a member of the VFW in Waterford, the American Legion E.T. Ruane Post 476 in Cohoes and the Knickerbocker Steamer Company.

Jacon was born in Troy and was educated in Cohoes. He proudly served in Vietnam with the U.S. Marine Corps. Jacon worked as a truck driver at Sysco for 40 years and at A.R.G. Trucking in Rensselaer. He was a life member of the Disabled American Veterans, 1st Vice Commander of the American Legion E.T. Ruane Post 476 in Cohoes and a member of the Cohoes Veterans Memorial Committee. He was married to McCarthy's daughter, Tara, for nine years.

The Honor-A-Veteran ceremony is held every first Monday of the month to honor a deceased veteran of the community.

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Roy Gomez, US Navy

Albany County Executive Mike Breslin, Congressman Paul Tonko and the Honor-A-Veteran Committee commemorated the life of World War II veteran Roy Y. Gomez at a ceremony on Monday, June 6, 2011 at the Joseph E. Zaloga Post in Albany.

Gomez was a longtime resident of Albany and later Latham. He served in the United States Navy during World War II from February 10, 1943 to October 25, 1945. 

Gomez was very active and well-known in the veteran community. He served as past commander, the 3rd and 4th district commander and on the National Americanism Committee of the Albany County American Legion. He also served as commander of the A.J. Scully Post in Albany. Gomez owned a lumber business for many years and later worked for Bellevue Lumber.

The Honor-A-Veteran ceremony is held every first Monday of the month to honor a deceased veteran of the community.

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US Air Force Veteran and Local Lawyer Bill Gray

Albany County Executive Mike Breslin, Congressman Paul Tonko and the Honor-A-Veteran Committee commemorated the life of Korean War veteran William J. Gray, Sr. at a ceremony on Monday, May 2, 2011 at the North Albany American Legion Post in Albany.

Gray was born and raised in North Albany. He graduated from CBA in 1949, attended Siena College and graduated from American University. He received his law degree from Albany Law School in 1955. Gray served his country in the US Air Force during the Korean War. He was discharged as a Staff Sergeant in 1955.

Gray started his law career in Corporate Council in Albany, later serving in the Public Defender's Office and State Legislature. He was associated with the private practice of James and John Woolsey and Judge Duncan from 1958 until his death. He was a life member of the Korean War Veterans and the North Albany American Legion Post #1610 and served as a judge advocate for the Legion. He also served as president of the Bethlehem Business and Professional Men's Association and a board member of Hope House.

The Honor-A-Veteran ceremony is held every first Monday of the month to honor a deceased veteran of the community.

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Charles P. Mongin, Sr., US Marine Corps

Albany County Executive Mike Breslin, Congressman Paul Tonko and the Honor-A-Veteran Committee commemorated the life of World War II and Korean Conflict veteran Charles P. Mongin, Sr. at a ceremony on Monday, April 4, 2011 at the Joseph E. Zaloga Post in Albany.

Born in Johnstown, NY on August 18, 1927, Mongin later graduated from Christian Brothers Academy and attended the University of Florida. He enlisted in the United States Marine Corps on July 15, 1946, serving with the 2nd Marine Airwing during World War II. Mongin served a second tour of active duty with the 1st Marine Airwing in 1950 during the Korean Conflict.

Mongin was employed by the General Electric Company for many years and was an active member of the veterans community. He served as past commander of the Fort Orange Post #30, past commander of the Albany County American Legion and past commander of Chapter 88 Disabled American Veterans. He also volunteered his time to many charitable causes and served as past vice president of the New York State Elks and a member of the Elfun Society. Mongin was married to his wife Therese for 60 years and had three children and seven grandchildren.

The Honor-A-Veteran ceremony is held every first Monday of the month to honor a deceased veteran of the community.

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Conrad L. Duncan, US Army

Albany County Executive Mike Breslin, Congressman Paul Tonko and the Honor-A-Veteran Committee commemorated the life of Cold War veteran and Retired Lieutenant Colonel Conrad L. Duncan at a ceremony on Monday, February 7, 2011 at the Joseph E. Zaloga Post in Albany.

Duncan was born in 1929 in Kingston, Jamaica. He was commissioned into the US Army in 1952 as a Chemical Corps Officer and was trained in nuclear, biological and chemical warfare defense. Duncan served on special assignments in Korea and Germany during the Cold War. He also served as an Inspector General in Fort Hamilton, Brooklyn. He retired from the Army after 20 years of faithful service as a Lieutenant Colonel.

After his military service, Duncan became district manager for School District 21 in Brooklyn, NY. He moved to Delmar in 1975 and became the director of Training for the NYS Department of Labor until his retirement in 1994.

Duncan was active with the 369th Veterans Association. He worked closely with the 369th Veterans and local legislators to honor WWI hero Henry Johnson with a bronze statue in Washington Park. Duncan was married to his wife Audrey for 59 years and had four children Patricia, Michael, Denyce and Leslie, eight grandchildren and two great-grandchildren.

The Honor-A-Veteran ceremony is held every first Monday of the month to honor a deceased veteran of the community.

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Douglas J. Vink, US Army

Albany County Executive Mike Breslin, Congressman Paul Tonko and the Honor-A-Veteran Committee will commemorated the life of World War II veteran Douglas J. Vink at a ceremony on Monday, January 3, 2011 at the Sheehy-Palmer VFW Post in Albany.

Douglas J. Vink was born in 1925. He joined the United States Army in 1943 and was soon deployed through England to France to join the Sixth Armored Division, one of the spearhead units of General Patton's Third Army, as a Main Gunner in the M-4-A-1 Sherman Medium Tank and later as a Tank Commander. Vink's unit was dispatched to relieve the besieged units of the 101st Airborne Division at Bastogne during the Battle of the Bulge. He was awarded four Battle Stars for the combat he saw in Central Europe. Vink was one of three veterans featured in a book about the Battle of the Bulge, Into the Dragon's Teeth, by Dan Lynch and Paul Rutherford published in 2005.

In 1946, Vink returned to Albany and worked briefly for the Albany Port Market. He became employed with the Niagara Mohawk Power Corporation in July 1946, where he remained for nearly 40 years until his retirement in 1985. He was a life member of the International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers of America.

Vink was dedicated to sharing his war experiences with youth, volunteering for over 11 years to give lectures to students about military service and the Battle of the Bulge. In 2005, he was awarded the "Partners in Education Award" by the Capital District Council for the Social Studies for his efforts.

Vink was very active in several veterans' organizations, including serving as a member and seven time commander of the Sheehy-Palmer VFW Post, two time commander of the VFW Albany County Council, member and past president of the Hudson Valley Chapter of the Veterans of the Battle of the Bulge, a member of the V.A. Support Group for the National Veterans Cemetery in Saratoga and a member of the Tri-County Council of Vietnam Era Veterans.

The Honor-A-Veteran ceremony is held every first Monday of the month to honor a deceased veteran of the community.

*The March 2011 Honor A Veteran ceremony was cancelled due to winter weather.

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