Senator Chapin Honors Korean War Veterans at 60th Anniversary Ceremony in Torrington [Register Citizen]

August 1, 2013

Article as it appeared in the Register Citizen on July 28, 2013

Korean War veterans honored in 60th anniversary ceremony

By Kate Hartman

TORRINGTON — The Torrington Veteran’s Support Committee marked the 60th anniversary of the Korean War armistice Saturday by inviting veterans to gather at a ceremony in Coe Memorial Park.

Chairman Leo Martigneni opened the ceremony under a clear sky by asking all those in attendance to turn their attention to a chair on stage, which represented prisoners of war and those missing in action. Martigneni said that currently, there are 7,900 soldiers listed as missing in action. He asked the crowd to keep them in their thoughts.

State Sen. Clark Chapin read a proclamation from Gov. Dannel P. Malloy honoring Connecticut residents who have served our country in the Korean War.

State Rep. Jay Case was also present and took the opportunity to offer his respect for the veterans present.

“On behalf of the House of Representatives I’m here to thank everyone, to thank the veterans for their service,” said Case. “Our veterans in the US and in Connecticut have really done us well. I’m proud to serve for you in Hartford.”

Before reading a proclamation from Mayor Ryan Bingham, who was not present at the event, councilwoman and Republican mayoral candidate Elinor Carbone thanked the Veteran’s Support Committee for hosting the event.

“It keeps us connected to our past,” said Carbone.

In the proclamation Carbone read, Bingham proclaimed July 27, 2013 National Korean War Armistice Day and asked civilians to, “treat all veterans and their families with the respect they deserve.”

The program continued with Combat Medic John Conrad speaking of his time in the Korean War.

“It was quite an experience,” said Conrad. “Trying to save the lives of combatants became a daily task. Many of the medical personnel had never seen the death or destruction we saw in Korea. Whether we had medical degrees or not, we became doctors to the combatants.”

Gunnery Sgt. Duanne Knowles honored fellow Korean War veteran Leo Nadeau who passed away in December 2005.

“Since I’ve been with the detachment I’ve kept a list of those veterans who have passed away. I don’t go anywhere in my uniform without the list,” Knowles said as he took the list out of his pocket to show the crowd. “It’s growing.”

Knowles spoke about Nadeau and offered a farewell prayer to him.

A salute to the wreaths followed. The American Legion Post 38, Veterans of Foreign Wars Post 9086, Marine Corps League Detach 1142, US Navy Seabee Veterans of America, AMVETS Post 24, Veteran Service Organization Torrington and the American Legion Riders wreaths were honored.

The ceremony concluded with a rifle salute, a benediction and Amazing Grace performed by Master Sgt. Karch Reynolds on the bagpipes.

“I urge civilians, whenever you see a veteran, to thank them for their service,” Martigneni said in closing.