Members of V.F.W. Post 1371 Ladies and Men’s Auxiliaries gathered on Wednesday afternoon, June 24 to dedicate a new U.S. Flag at Riverview Manor, located at 510 Fifth Ave. in Owego, N.Y.
Attending the ceremony were Riverview Manor staff along with residents who are veterans. Riverview is home to 18 residents who are veterans, many of whom were able to enjoy a picture perfect summer day on the front porch of the facility while watching the ceremony.
During the ceremony, Auxiliary members led the “Pledge of Allegiance” as well as asking for a moment of silence. Several of the attendees who were able, stood and saluted during the ceremony.
Ladies Auxiliary member, Joan Vassil, who initiated the new flag dedication, shared, “It’s very important that we do this.”
Vassil’s husband, Thomas, a Korean War veteran and also a Riverview resident, was present at the ceremony.
Also attending the ceremony was Austyn Conti of Owego, a young woman who has been involved with the V.F.W. Junior Girls for many years and has held the role of group leader for Angels over Afghanistan, a group of youth who collect donations and send care packages to deployed soldiers.
Ladies Auxiliary President, Jean Sabol, explained that the V.F.W. Junior Girls groups have recently been disbanded nationwide, however she is hopeful that a new effort encouraging boys and girls ages five to 17 to be involved as “Patriotic Youth” will continue the tradition of serving the community.
Ray Barrett, Chaplain of V.F.W. Post 1371 Men’s Auxiliary, explained that the old flag lowered and removed at Riverview would be part of a special retirement ceremony later, as is officially done when flags are changed out.
The Ladies and Men’s Auxiliary share a common goal by serving the veterans of the community and also honor the sacrifices and commitment of every man and woman who has served in uniform.