Leyden Township Dedicates Veterans Memorial

| December 1, 2012
On Sunday November 11th, 2012 at 2 PM a Veterans Day ceremony was held at the Leyden Township Administrative building, 2501 N. Mannheim Road. This event was to dedicate an area inside of the Leyden Township administrative building now named “Veterans Hall”. An estimate of 500 people was in attendance. Many Veterans and their families were in attendance. It was a windy, cloudy day, but with mild temperatures. A canopy with folding chairs and a stage was set up in the parking lot.
Patriotic and military theme songs were played by the Leyden High School Symphonic Band directed by Tara Cappelletti. The singing was done by Cpl Thomas Henniger USMC. After some opening marching songs a Presentation of the Colors was presented by the U.S.M.C. Color Guard. The Star Spangled Banner was sung and then an Invocation given.  An honoring and welcoming speech was given by SM2 George Atkins U.S. Navy, Past Commander Rhode Post 888. Afterwards God Bless America was sung.
Many local dignitaries from the surrounding suburbs of Leyden Township were in attendance. A heart felt speech was given by Bradley A. Stephens, Supervisor of Leyden Township, and Frank Bottigliero, Director of the Leyden Township Veterans Affairs.
Taps was then played along with a rifle salute done by the American Legion Rifle Team. This team consisted of members from both the Northlake Post 888, and Franklin Park Post 974.
On stage were the family members of the Fallen But Never Forgotten warriors whose names were honored on special plaques, on a separate wall inside Veterans Hall. An unveiling of the stone Veterans Memorial monument was done as family members looked on.  A dedication speech was made along with an Armed Service Salute. America the Beautiful was sung and then Stars and Stripes Forever were played, concluding the ceremony.
The names of the Fallen But Never Forgotten were:
  • SGT Joseph F Bonacci, U.S.Army 1942-1945
  • SP4 Matthew Malczynski, U.S. Army 1966-1967
  • CPL James P Califf, U.S. Army 1970-1971
  • PFC Christopher Alcozer, U.S. Army 2004-2005
  • PV2 Randol Scott Shelton, U.S. Army, 2005-2007
  • LCPL Frederick Erik Vazquez, U.S. Marine Corps 2008-2010
  • LCPL Nickolas Alan Daniels, U.S. Marine Corps 2010-2011
Veterans Hall was then opened for all who wished to file through to view the wall of names memorialized inside the building. This wall included two very large wooden frames holding brass placards with the names of all Leyden Township residents who served in the military. Another wall was lined with the special plaques honoring the fallen warriors.
Fresh fruit and bakery items were offered along with light refreshments to all. Most people in attendance were given a lapel pin American flag and an actual hand held size American flag to wave.  This wonderfully done event was accomplished with the donations of time and materials by many, and some Township funds were involved. A similar event for next year has been briefly discussed and is still in its early planning stages.

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Category: Articles, Salute to Soldiers

About the Author ()

Barbara is the publisher of People and Places Newspaper which she started in August of 2011. A lifelong resident of Schiller Park, she always felt it important that residents needed to be kept informed about their communities. Since newspaper coverage for Schiller Park stopped about twenty years ago, she made it a goal to bring a newspaper back to the area. She tries to include all of Leyden Township in her reporting and wants to keep true with the mission of the paper to "inform, educate and entertain."

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