Organizers of “Operation Remember” are hopeful that signs posted in Port Jefferson and Setauket will remind passersby of the ongoing effort to update four local veteran memorials. The project to update four existing war memorials located in Port Jefferson, Setauket and Stony Brook to commemorate the sacrifices made by the latest generations of America’s service members was launched last Veterans Day and has raised nearly $22,000 of the $35,000 needed to complete this three phased effort.
The two signs were designed by the Office of Legislator Hahn to update the community on the progress of this project and printed and placed by the Town of Brookhaven at the two memorials located on Brookhaven Town parkland.
Last fall, a coalition comprised of American Legion and Veterans of Foreign Wars posts located in Setauket, Stony Brook and Port Jefferson Station, Suffolk County Legislator Kara Hahn and the Long Island State Veterans Home announced a partnership to complete a three phased effort to expand memorials located in Stony Brook Village, on the Setauket Village Green, at the Setauket Veterans Memorial Park and along the Port Jefferson harbor. Phase I of the project, which focused on the Stony Brook and Setauket Village Green sites was completed in time for this past Memorial Day. Phase II, which will renovate the Port Jefferson harbor memorial is nearing completion and will be unveiled on Veterans Day. The final phase will update the Setauket Veterans Memorial Park located along Main Street. These improvements are scheduled to be complete by Memorial Day.
“With the project approaching two-thirds complete, we are asking our neighbors to help us finish this mission,” said Legislator Kara Hahn. “Our community has always been supportive of its veterans and as we keep their sacrifices in our thoughts this Veterans Day, we also hope these signs will keep the promise we made to honor them strong.”
According to Bill Wolf, Commander of the American Legion Wilson Ritch Post 432 in Port Jefferson, "The mission to update these monuments is overdue, but with the continued support and generosity of our neighbors, we this mission will be completed by spring, giving all of our veterans the recognition they deserve."
Checks should be made payable and mailed to Veterans Memorial Fund, PO Box 986, Port Jefferson Station, NY, 11776 or can be hand delivered to:
Wilson Ritch Post 432
1450 Hallock Avenue
Port Jefferson Station, New York 11776
Donations have been rolling in steadily since the inception of this project and among those who have already answered the call are “Purple Heart” sponsors Realty Three LLC and the Acker Family Foundation; “Defense Superior Service Medal” sponsors the Long Island State Veterans Home and The American Legion Harbor Post in Stony Brook; and, the Ardolino Group, Jewish War Veterans of the United States of America Col. Mickey Marcus Post 336, IU Bricklayers and Allied Craftworkers Local 7 and Friends of Kara Hahn became “Meritorious Service Medal” sponsors. Thank you to everyone who has helped us by donating so far, we are looking forward to the community unveiling of Phases II and III.
For more information about “Operation Remember” and sponsorship opportunities still available, please visit http://americanlegionwilsonritchpost432.org/index.php?id=101.
Photo: A sign installed near the Port Jefferson veterans memorial reminds passersby of the continuing work to update sites in Port Jefferson, Setauket and Stony Brook for recent military operations.