veterans

John Smith/WAER News

  It was as if Veterans' Day came early today during a ceremony in Syracuse to honor Veterans and those currently serving in the US Armed Forces.  The State Fair is honoring veterans with a day reserved just for them.  Among all of the flags waving in the breeze special attention was paid to our nation’s flag and the 200th Anniversary of the Star Spangled Banner.

Veteran Harold Mundstock of North Syracuse served in Vietnam and was teary-eyed thinking about those he served… and his wife’s brother who served 27 years in the US Air Force and then contracted Agent Orange.

Scott Willis / WAER News

A Central New York Vietnam veteran who lost his Purple Heart medal years ago had it returned Tuesday. 

 Army Special Forces veteran Daniel Hunnicutt was presented with his original medal at a ceremony today in county legislature chambers.  

He lost the medal in Portland, Oregon, where he returned from Vietnam.  A contractor working on the back porch of a house discovered the medal in the dirt and took it to the local VA center.  After deciphering the name, it made its way back to Hunnicutt here in New York. 

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  A bill sits on Governor Andrew Cuomo’s desk that could make it easier for veterans to afford to go to college here in New York.  The Student Assembly of the State University of New York is lobbying for the measure.  Communications Director Juliann Schindler explains it would open SUNY campuses to out-of-state vets.

johnkatkoforcongress.com

  Congressional candidate John Katko thinks he just might have the background to help clean up some of the problems at the Veterans Administration should he get elected.  

Scott Willis / WAER News

Navy veteran Sonny Carelli wanted to make something clear right off the bat at Friday’s ribbon cutting of VanKeuren Square on E. Genesee St. in Syracuse.

"This is not a halfway house, this is not transitional living.  This is our home.  You screw up here, make the landlord angry, she'll kick you out.  Don't pay your rent?  You'll get kicked out."

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How much might a soldier’s combat experience cause them to commit a crime?  The New York State Defenders Association says ‘a lot’ in some cases.  The group is pushing a bill in Albany it says will bring more justice to court proceedings when the defendant is a veteran or active duty military.  Executive Director Jonathan Gradess says he’s trying to protect a group of vulnerable service members.

Veterans Issues, Support Initiative and Outreach Network

The Syracuse University College of Law will again partner with the Veterans Issues, Support Initiative and Outreach Network (VISION) to host its third Valor Day this Saturday, April 5. As a way of giving back to those who have served, law students, alumni and local volunteers will provide free legal and advocacy services for veterans, service members and their families.  

Scott Willis / WAER News

Onondaga Community College was the place to be Thursday for veterans  hoping to develop their entrepreneurial knowledge.  The college hosted the Small Business Administration's 7th annual “Operation: Start Up & Grow” conference for veterans and other members of the military looking to start or expand their own businesses.  Keynote speaker and Marine Corps veteran Lee Buttolph ended up buying his family’s lumber company in 2010.  He says resources from the SBA and his military experience in Iraq prepared him for this new battle.  

Chris Bolt/WAER News

  It took Iraq War veteran John Ready of Oneida almost ten years to write about the experiences he went through as part of a civil affairs unit.  But he decided to chronicle the strange, sometimes funny and poignant happenings and thoughts in his book, "Does My Suicide Vest Make Me Look Fat?: A Soldier's Year in Iraq."   

John Smith
WAER News

Veterans and their families gathered at the War Memorial Tuesday for a celebration and honoring of their service. Carol Anne Wood is the grandmother of a woman currently serving in the U-S Army.  She would write poems for her granddaughter and the platoon, and quickly became known as the platoon grandmother.

Unfortunately not all service members are able to return to their families and communities. A special table was set up to honor those Missing in Action or who are Prisoners of War.      

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