On May 8, 1945 - known as Victory in Europe Day or V-E Day - celebrations erupted around the world to mark the end of World War II in Europe.
The war had been raging for almost five years when U.S. and Allied forces landed on the beaches of Normandy, France, on June 6, 1944. The invasion signaled the beginning of the end for Adolf Hitler and Nazi Germany. In less than a year, Germany would surrender and Hitler would be dead.
But in his speech to the nation on V-E Day, President Harry S. Truman cautioned that Allies must "work to finish the war" by defeating the Japanese in the Pacific.
We must never forget the sacrifice of those who led us to victory and we must study history in order to ensure we do not let complacency exist among us.
May 07, 2021 - Today we publicly bid farewell to our Comrade and Friend, Tom Gallery. Tom's services will be held today at Greenlawn Cemetery and his Nahant American Legion Post 215 will be on hand to honor his lifetime of service and enter him in Post Everlasting.
Tom passed all too quickly after a brief illness on December 6, 2020. He spent a lifetime serving his country and his community. His unexpected loss leaves a hole in our hearts and community. Tom was a well respected member of more than 50 years of the Nahant American Legion Post 215 and a strong Veterans advocate. He is a past Commander and his devotion to duty, God, and Country will be sorely missed.
The US Navy Service Service Flag is flying in his honor at our Post located within the historic Nahnat Life Saving Station.
Rest your oars sailor, we have the watch.
Thomas W. Gallery, 75
1945 - 2020
Nahant - Thomas W. Gallery, 75 of Nahant passed away suddenly on Sunday, December 6,2020 after a brief illness. He was the beloved husband of Dr. Melissa (Tanner)Gallery with whom he shared 41 years of marriage. Born and raised in Nahant he was the son of the late Charles C. Gallery and Patricia (Larkin) Gallery. He was a graduate of the Lynn Classical High School Class of 1964.
After graduation Tom went on to serve his country proudly in the Navy from 1964-1968. After discharge from the Navy he returned to Nahant and became a Nahant Police Officer. He served his community for 32 years and retired as a Sergeant in 2006. Tom was also a 50-year member of the Mortimer G. Robbins Post 215, American Legion.
In his retirement Tom spent most of his best days riding his Harley Davidson on great adventures with friends or enjoying the beautiful breezes vacationing in Puerto Rico.
In lieu of flowers donations can be made in Tom's name to New England Center and Home for Veterans,17 Court Street, Boston, MA 02108; St. Jude Children's Research Hospital 262 Danny Thomas Place, Memphis, TN 38105; or Northeast Animal Shelter, 347 Highland Avenue, Salem, MA 01970. Arrangements by the Solimine Funeral Home, Lynn. Guestbook at www.solimine.com
Today on her birthdate (April 6, 1935), the Nahant American Legion Post 215 is honored to hoist the US Navy Service Flag in recognition of US Navy Veteran Mary E. "Babe" Driscoll Kelley. While "Babe" passed away in 1987, we recognize and honor her service.
"Babe" lived at 12 Emerald Rd., graduating from Saint Mary's HS, Lynn, class of 1952. She enlisted in the US Navy and served at Pensacola Naval Air Station from 1953 to 1956.
Honorably Discharged and after spending some time in DC, came back home to Nahant. She was married to Francis L. Kelley Jr, on Sept 8th, 1962 and they were married for almost 25 years.
"Babe" passed away August 10, 1987.
Please join us in recognizing and honoring US Navy Veteran Mary E. "Babe" Driscoll Kelley.
***SPECIAL NOTE - The Flag is at Half Mast today per order of the President as a sign of respect for the service and sacrifice of the victims of the attack at the United States Capitol in Washington, D.C. on April 2, 2021
Credit - Lynn Item, April 4th 2021
NAHANT — The traveling Vietnam Veterans memorial, also known as “the Wall that Heals,” will finally make its way to Nahant this summer.
Initially slated to visit the North Shore last year following efforts by American Legion Post 215 to bring the memorial to Nahant in celebration of the legion’s 100th anniversary, the wall’s arrival was postponed indefinitely in June 2020 due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
Frank Guidara, an American Legion member and Vietnam veteran, told The Item last June that he was disappointed by the unexpected turn of events.
“I really didn’t want to lose the date because you’re fighting against towns and cities all over America,” he said. “To be picked as one of the ones the wall would go to — and getting the dates we wanted — we were pretty excited.”
Operated by the Veterans Memorial Fund, the wall — a replica three-fourths the size of the Vietnam Memorial in Washington, D.C. — allows visitors to do rubbings of individual service members’ names, which are listed by day of casualty on the monument’s avonite surface.
It also doubles as a mobile education center that includes photos of service members and a display of items representative of those left at the larger version of the wall in Washington in remembrance of servicemen lost.
“It’s called ‘The Wall that Heals,’ and that’s a good name, but it doesn’t really describe what it is. We’ve been calling it the ‘Memorial Wall,’” American Legion member Toby Quirk said last June. “It evokes the same kind of somber and patriotic emotions that the wall in Washington, D.C. evokes. It makes it very accessible and … we expect to have people come from great distances to this event, not just Vietnam veterans and their families, but also children, grandchildren, friends of veterans. A big element of this is the education center.”
Guidara added: “If you’ve been to the other war memorials (in D.C.), the Korean War, World War I, World War II, this one has a different sense to it. It’s about the young men, the young men who died.”
Towns and cities across the country must enter for a chance to have the memorial visit their communities, and competition can be tough. Before Nahant, the memorial was originally scheduled to make stops in Bedford, Pa,; Clinton Township, Mich.; Wheaton, Ill.; and Tama, Iowa.
Nahant is the farthest North the wall will travel in 2021. Residents of the North Shore and beyond will be able to visit the memorial from July 14-18.
“I know there are Vietnam veterans in Nahant and surrounding towns who are going to have a time of reflection with the wall being here,” Quirk said. “It’s very important, I think, emotionally because you never get over some of those traumatic memories. This is another healing opportunity.”
National Medal of Honor Day is observed every year on March 25 and is dedicated to Medal of Honor Recipients. Each branch of the U.S. military awards the Medal of Honor to those who have distinguished themselves “conspicuously by gallantry and intrepidity” above and beyond the call of duty, according to the Department of Veterans Affairs official site.
The Medal of Honor is awarded only to military members; it is awarded by Congress and is also known as the Congressional Medal of Honor. National Medal of Honor Day is a time to remember the sacrifices of men and women in uniform who have earned this highest of military honors.
Congressional Medal of Honor Society | Official Website
Medal Of Honor Award Criteria
The original MoH criteria includes the following as presented on the Medal Of Honor Society official site. The medal may be awarded for meritorious actions above and beyond the call of duty:
* While engaged in an action against an enemy of the United States
* While engaged in military operations involving conflict with an opposing foreign force
* While serving with friendly forces engaged in armed conflict against an opposing armed force in which the United States is not a belligerent party
***Image courtesy of https://www.njvvmf.org/
A vaccine pop-up will be coming to the Breed Jr. HS in Lynn on February 20 (details coming later) for veterans who are 50 and over. Need to be enrolled in the VA health care system. Nahant Veterans can see the Town Veterans Service Officer for a quick and easy application (which you may or may not have to accept or participate in).
Veterans Service Officer
Nahant American Legion Post 215
Nahant, MA 01908
Today the Nahant American Legion Post 215 honors US Navy Veteran Joseph T. Casey on the one year anniversary of his passing by flying the family's American Flag displayed in the home of his daughter, Nahant resident Kathy Eaton. We also fly the US Navy Service Flag.
Joe was born in Lynn and attended St Patrick’s School. When he was a young child, his family moved to Nahant where he spent his boyhood exploring its natural beauty: East Point, Forty Steps, and Swallow’s Cave were among his favorites. He attended Nahant Public Schools before graduating from Lynn Classical High School in 1952.
From 1952-1956, he served his country as a Gunner’s Mate on the U.S. Navy destroyer USS Wallace L. Lind (DD-703).
(Joseph T. Casey, 85 - Itemlive : Itemlive)
An American Legion Honor Guard retired the family colors Monday morning at 0800 (8am) with a short service. Please see photos below.
Today we honor and recognize, US Navy Veteran John, C. Johnson by flying the US Navy Service Flag at the Nahant Lifesaving Station, home to American Legion Post 215.
John is the brother of our beloved friend and American Legion Auxiliary Member Esther Johnson. John was a US Navy Veteran who served during both the North Korean and Vietnam Wars. He was most recently a resident of the Georgia War Veterans Home.
Vietnam Veterans Memorial Replica Wall and Mobile Education Center spreads healing legacy of The Wall and educates about the impact of the Vietnam War
Washington, D.C. – The Vietnam Veterans Memorial Fund (VVMF) has announced The Wall That Heals national tour schedule for 2021. The Wall That Heals exhibit includes a three-quarter scale replica of the Vietnam Veterans Memorial along with a mobile Education Center. The 26th season of The Wall That Heals will begin on April 8, 2021 in New Bern, North Carolina and visit 28 communities during the year. The traveling exhibit honors the more than three million Americans who served in the U.S. Armed Forces in the Vietnam War and it bears the names of the 58,279 men and women who made the ultimate sacrifice in Vietnam.
“Like many events and activities in our nation, our 2020 The Wall That Heals season was dramatically changed by the pandemic. We are excited to find these communities ready to work carefully to give a safe opportunity for thousands to experience the healing and educational aspects of the Vietnam Veterans Memorial in 2021,” said Jim Knotts, president and CEO of VVMF. “We look forward to providing these communities with the opportunity to honor and remember all those who served and sacrificed in the Vietnam War and educate visitors on the continuing impact of the Vietnam War on America.”
Each year, VVMF receives more applications to host the exhibit than can be accommodated. For the 2021 tour schedule, preferential consideration was given to cancelled sites from the 2020 tour that reapplied for 2021. Some 2020 hosts elected to apply for a date in a future year.
The Wall That Heals 2021 Tour dates include:
Nahant, MA, July 15-18, 2020
The Wall That Heals is generously sponsored by USAA. Through a partnership with the Truckload Carriers Association (TCA), the trucking industry, and Blue Beacon, the exhibit is able to travel across the country. Hosts in each community provide for the location, volunteers, and preparations necessary to replicate the experience a visitor would have at the Vietnam Veterans Memorial in Washington D.C.VVMF will work closely with each community to make certain that community health and safety protocols are met. Communities will have to permit gatherings of 250 or more people. Volunteers will be required to wear masks. Visitors will be encouraged to wear masks and practice social distancing to safeguard the staff, volunteers and other visitors.
“Nothing is more important to VVMF than the health and well-being of our Vietnam veterans and their families. We will work to provide the best visitor experience while keeping the safety of our staff, volunteers and visitors at top of mind,” said Knotts.
Since its debut in 1996, the exhibit has been on display in nearly 700 U.S. communities in addition to an April 1999 tour of the Four Provinces of Ireland and a visit to Canada in 2005. The Wall That Heals is a program of VVMF, the nonprofit organization that built the Vietnam Veterans Memorial in Washington, D.C. in 1982. The Wall That Heals is the only traveling exhibit affiliated with The Wall in Washington, D.C. and includes the largest Wall replica that travels the country. Two VVMF staff members lead volunteers on site, educate visitors and students, and ensure the reflective atmosphere of The Wall. More information can be found at: www.thewallthatheals.org.
About The Wall replica
The three-quarter scale Wall replica is 375 feet in length and stands 7.5 feet high at its tallest point. With the replica at this size, visitors are able to experience The Wall rising above them as they walk towards the apex, a key feature of the design of The Wall in D.C.
Like the original Memorial, The Wall That Heals is erected in a chevron-shape and visitors are able to do name rubbings of individual service member’s names on The Wall. The names are listed in order of date of casualty and alphabetically on each day. Beginning at the center/apex, the names start on the East Wall (right-hand side) working their way out to the end of that wing, picking up again at the far end of the West Wall (left-hand side) and working their way back in to the center/apex. The first and last casualties are side by side at the apex of the Memorial.
The replica is constructed of Avonite, a synthetic granite, and its 144 individual panels are supported by an aluminum frame. Modern LED lighting from the top of The Wall provides readability of The Wall at night.
About the mobile Education Center
The Wall That Heals is transported from community to community in a 53-foot trailer. When parked, the trailer opens with exhibits built into its sides, allowing it to serve as a mobile Education Center telling the story of the Vietnam War, The Wall and the divisive era in American history.
The mobile Education Center exhibit includes: digital photo displays of “Hometown Heroes” – service members whose names are on The Wall that list their home of record within the area of a visit; digital photo displays of Vietnam veterans from the local area honored through VVMF’s In Memory program which honors veterans who returned home from Vietnam and later died as a result of their service; video displays that teach about the history and impact of The Wall; educational exhibits told through items representative of those left at The Wall in D.C.; a replica of the In Memory plaque; a map of Vietnam and a chronological overview of the Vietnam War. The exhibits tell the story of the Vietnam War, The Wall and the era surrounding the conflict, and are designed to put American experiences in Vietnam in a historical and cultural context.
The Vietnam Veterans Memorial Fund (VVMF) is the nonprofit organization that built the Vietnam Veterans Memorial (The Wall) in Washington, D.C. in 1982. VVMF continues to lead the way in paying tribute to our nation’s Vietnam veterans and their families. VVMF’s mission is to honor and preserve the legacy of service in America and educate all generations about the impact of the Vietnam War and era through programs, ceremonies and education materials. To learn more about VVMF, visit www.vvmf.org or call 202-393-0090.
This morning at 0800 we lowered the Flag at the Nahant Life Saving Station, home to the Nahant American Legion Post 215 to half staff in honor of the service members and civilians who perished in the attack on Pearl Harbor on December 7, 1941.
The following is the text of the 2020 Presidential Proclamation.
On the morning of December 7, 1941, Imperial Japanese forces ambushed the Naval Station Pearl Harbor on the Hawaiian island of Oahu. Tragically, 2,403 Americans perished during the attack, including 68 civilians. On this National Pearl Harbor Remembrance Day, we solemnly honor and uphold the memory of the patriots who lost their lives that day — “a date which will live in infamy” — and we reflect on the courage of all those who served our Nation with honor in the Second World War.
Seventy nine years ago, Imperial Japan launched an unprovoked and devastating attack on our Nation. As torpedo bombers unleashed their deadly cargo on our ships and attack aircraft rained bombs from above, brave members of the United States Navy, Marines, Army, and Army Air Forces mounted a heroic defense, manning their battle stations and returning fire through the smoke and chaos. The profound bravery in the American resistance surprised Japanese aircrews and inspired selfless sacrifice among our service members. In one instance, Machinist’s Mate First Class Robert R. Scott, among 15 Sailors awarded the Medal of Honor for acts of valor on that day, refused to leave his flooding battle station within the depths of the USS CALIFORNIA, declaring to the world: “This is my station and I will stay and give them air as long as the guns are going.”
Forever enshrined in our history, the attack on Pearl Harbor shocked all Americans and galvanized our Nation to fight and defeat the Axis powers of Japan, Germany, and Italy. As Americans, we promise never to forget our fallen compatriots who fought so valiantly during World War II. As a testament to their memory, more than a million people visit the site of the USS ARIZONA Memorial each year to pay their respects to the Sailors entombed within its wreckage and to all who perished that day. Despite facing tremendous adversity, the Pacific Fleet, whose homeport remains at Pearl Harbor to this day, is stronger than ever before, upholding the legacy of all those who gave their lives nearly 80 years ago.
On this National Pearl Harbor Remembrance Day, we recall the phrase “Remember Pearl Harbor,” which stirred the fighting spirit within the hearts of the more than 16 million Americans who courageously served in World War II. Over 400,000 gave their lives in the global conflict that began, for our Nation, on that fateful Sunday morning. Today, we memorialize all those lost on December 7, 1941, declare once again that our Nation will never forget these valiant heroes, and resolve as firmly as ever that their memory and spirit will survive for as long as our Nation endures.
The Congress, by Public Law 103-308, as amended, has designated December 7 of each year as “National Pearl Harbor Remembrance Day.”
NOW, THEREFORE, I, DONALD J. TRUMP, President of the United States of America, do hereby proclaim December 7, 2020, as National Pearl Harbor Remembrance Day. I encourage all Americans to observe this solemn day of remembrance and to honor our military, past and present, with appropriate ceremonies and activities. I urge all Federal agencies and interested organizations, groups, and individuals to fly the flag of the United States at half-staff in honor of those American patriots who died as a result of their service at Pearl Harbor.
IN WITNESS WHEREOF, I have hereunto set my hand this fourth day of December, in the year of our Lord two thousand twenty, and of the Independence of the United States of America the two hundred and forty-fifth.