WWII Medal of Honor recipient speaks at Gold Star groundbreaking

Oct 10, 2018
Source: www.nationalww2museum.org President Truman presents the Medal of Honor to Hershel "Woody" Williams Oct. 5, 1945.

On Oct. 7, the Hershel “Woody” Williams Medal of Honor Foundation broke ground for construction of the Maine Gold Star Families Memorial Monument at Veterans Park in Lewiston. This memorial is one of 87 across 34 states that will honor our Gold Star families who have sacrificed a loved one in service to our country.

Guest speaker was World War II U.S. Marine Corps veteran, Medal of Honor and Purple Heart recipient Hershel Woodrow “Woody” Williams, who was born on a dairy farm in 1923 in Quiet Dell, West Virginia, the youngest of 11 children. He enlisted and fought in the World War II Battle of Iwo Jima with the 21st Marines, 3d Marine Division.

During the battle, Williams displayed “valiant devotion to duty” and service above self as he “enabled his company to reach its objective.” His actions, commitment to his fellow service members, and heroism were recognized on Oct. 5, 1945, when he received the Medal of Honor from President Truman at the White House. Williams is the sole surviving Marine from WWII to wear the Medal of Honor.

Homeless Veterans Stand Down

It is that time of year again, when VA Maine and community providers work together to support Maine’s homeless veterans in our annual “Stand Down.”
VA Maine’s 21st annual Homeless Veterans Stand Down will be held Saturday, Oct. 13, at the Togus campus in Augusta from 9 to 11 a.m.

“Stand Down” is a military term referring to a period when active duty service men and women are able to take a break and “stand down” to shower, get clean clothes, grab a hot meal and enjoy some recreation.

Many years ago a small group of Vietnam veterans in San Diego started a “Homeless Veterans Stand Down” in which veterans could come in off the streets, shelters, out of their vehicles and receive a hot meal, and the needed services/resources to end their homelessness. Stand Down events are held across the country by VA Medical Centers and community partners.

On Saturday, there will be several locations across the state where transportation will be provided for rides to Togus for help with substance abuse and mental health, optometry, HIV/Hep C testing, primary care visits, flu shots, prosthetics, housing, employment, advanced directives (living wills), VA enrollment, veterans benefit claims, free haircuts, full duffel bag of new winter clothing, winter boots, personal hygiene products, women’s services, and free legal assistance.

For more information about this event and transportation pick-up locations, please contact Gabrielle Farris at 623-8411, ext. 2992.

Women Marines meet & greet

Women Marines Association (WMA) Detachment, Area 1 Director Jamie DePaola and I, as Maine Ambassador for the Women in Military Service for America Memorial, invite all women Marines to meet Saturday, Oct. 13, from 2 to 4 p.m. at Margarita’s Restaurant, 390 Western Ave., Augusta.

This is a milestone year as the U.S. Marine Corps celebrates 100 years of women in the Corps. Wear your Marine Corps pride and plan to celebrate in fellowship with other female Marines.

For questions, please call me at 930-5640.

Salute to Veterans

The Thomaston Historical Society invites veterans to join them Saturday, Oct. 20, from 1 to 3 p.m. as they and other sponsors pay tribute to military personnel from every service branch and every period in American history.

The event will take place at Thomaston Masonic Temple, 201 Main St., Thomaston.

Participants include Orient 15 Lodge of Masons in Thomaston, General Henry Knox Museum, Lady Knox Chapter of the DAR, American Legion Post 37, Boy Scout Troop 215 of Thomaston and the Midcoast Community Band.

Presenters will include Quilts of Valor and Honor Flight Maine. In addition to recognizing veterans, guests will have the opportunity to view displays of memorabilia.

Please RSVP to 354-2295 or info@thomastonhistoricalsociety.com.

Joy Asuncion is a retired U.S. Navy veteran, a board member ofHonor Flight Maine, a Maine Troop Greeter and the Maine State Ambassador for the Women in Military Service for America Memorial in Washington, D.C.  You can reach Joy at 930-5640 or joyasuncion@roadrunner.com


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