By Michael P. Walsh
Special to the Voice
Due to COVID-19 restrictions limiting large public gatherings, the city and the West Haven Veterans Council observed Veterans Day on Wednesday with a virtual ceremony now airing on Facebook and YouTube.
The Veterans Walk of Honor dedication, which was rescheduled to coincide with the annual Veterans Day tribute, was postponed to 5 p.m. May 29, 2021. The dedication of the Walk of Honor’s 13th phase will memorialize veterans on the brick walkway in Bradley Point Park.
The Veterans Day ceremony featured remarks by Mayor Nancy R. Rossi, U.S. Sen. Richard Blumenthal, D-Conn., and Veterans Council President Dave Ricci, who were accompanied by Police Chief Joseph S. Perno and Deputy Chief Carl V. Flemmig Jr. Louis P. Esposito Jr., Rossi’s executive assistant, served as the master of ceremonies.
The event included the Pledge of Allegiance led by Veterans Council member Al Terr, the national anthem sung by West Haven High School senior Nora E. Mullins, and opening and closing prayers given by Victor M. Borras of Gateway Christian Fellowship.
The tribute also included a bell-ringing by members of the West Haven Fire Department Honor Guard and taps played by former West Shore Fire Department Lt. Kevin McKeon.
Veterans Day, formerly Armistice Day, is celebrated on the 11th hour of the 11th day of the 11th month, marking the anniversary of the armistice that ended World War I in 1918.
The Veterans Council has extended the application deadline to March 15, 2021, for the 13th phase of its popular Brick Campaign.
Download a brick application at http://cityofwesthaven.com/DocumentCenter/View/2129/Veterans-Brick-Campaign-Application-2020-PDF.
In November 2006, the council began the first of 13 campaigns selling bricks to commemorate veterans on the 100-yard Walk of Honor between the William A. Soderman and Vietnam Veterans memorials.
The bricks, which cost $75, have charcoal lettering for personalized messages.
More than 2,700 bricks have been installed so far, including 51 for the 12th phase, which was dedicated May 25, 2019.
The virtual program is now airing on the West Haven City Hall Facebook page at https://www.facebook.com/CityofWestHaven/ and the city’s YouTube channel at https://www.youtube.com/channel/UC5cM1trmHe999FXNJ56X_Jg.