Contact: Julie Willmot
(609) 278-7137


HAMILTON, N.J.—Mercer County Executive Brian M. Hughes today honored 14 veterans who live at the County Geriatric Center Friday for their military service.

Hughes was joined by Freeholder Chairman Anthony Carabelli and the Mercer County Office of Veteran Services in bestowing service medals on the veterans, who range in age from 52 to 90 and represent four of the five military branches—the Army, Navy, Marines, and Air Force.

“This is truly an opportune time for us to reflect on what our veterans have given back to Mercer County and this nation as we just observed Memorial Day and prepare to celebrate the Fourth of July,” said Hughes during the medal presentation on the second floor of the Geriatric Center on Hamilton Avenue. “These 14 veterans represent many generations of service to our country across nearly all military branches, and these medals are a token of our respect and gratitude.”

The County Executive added that many of the veterans at the Geriatric Center served during World War II and noted the ceremony was taking place on the eve of the 65th anniversary of D-Day, the day of the epic Allied invasion of Normandy. Hughes also said on June 12, Mercer County will be hosting a homecoming ceremony at Sovereign Bank Arena for 2,800 New Jersey National Guard soldiers who are returning from Iraq and Afghanistan.

“This homecoming is the largest contingent of New Jersey National Guard troops returning home since World War II, and we are excited to be the first community in New Jersey to welcome back these American heroes,” he said.

The service medal is awarded by the County periodically to veterans as a way to honor their service to the country. Many of the veterans were joined by their family members as they accepted the medal. On the front side, the medal is engraved with the County seal and the phrase “Honoring Army – Marine Corps – Navy – Coast Guard – Air Force – Merchant Marines”, while the back is engraved with a wreath of laurel surrounding the phrase, “Honoring those who have faithfully served our country”.

Carabelli added that he was pleased to attend the ceremony and that “his heart goes out to all veterans” for having served their duty.

Hughes was joined at the ceremony by representatives of local veterans’ organizations, American Legion Post 31 and the Hamilton Township Patriotic Committee, by Ed Mazzeo, chief of the Mercer County Veteran Services Office, and by administrators and staff of the Geriatric Center.

Below is a list of the 14 veterans honored with the Mercer County Military Service Medal:

NAME SERVICE AGE
Anthony Delia

Marines

80

John Gore

Army

81

Thomas White

Air Force

88

Michael Bokey

Army

90

John Crawford

Army

73

Henry Burnett

Army

82

Thomas Goldware

Army

52

Le McHorney

Marines

78

Robert Nochton

Army

82

James Ostopuck

Marines

58

Lawrence Pellegrino

Army

86

Frank Sapio

Navy

82

Richard Scott

Army

80

Garland Terry

Army

82