On Friday, September 18, 2020 the Nahant American Legion Post 215 gathered to recognize and honor our National POW/MIA Recognition Day. Each year since 1989, a presidential proclamation brings the nation together to remember and honor the members of the Armed Forces who remain missing in action or are prisoners of war. The day serves as a call to action, reminding the nation to rededicate our efforts. We’re responsible for bringing our patriots home and for caring for our military families awaiting word of their loved ones.
Those who have served, and those currently serving in the uniformed services of the United States, are ever mindful that the sweetness of enduring peace has always been tainted by the bitterness of personal sacrifice. We are compelled to never forget that while we enjoy our daily pleasures, there are others who have endured and may still be enduring the agonies of pain, deprivation and imprisonment.
The following is an excerpt of the closing remarks by the President just prior to issuing the 2020 proclamation:
Today, we look to the iconic black and white flag as a powerful reminder of the service of America’s POWs and service members who have gone MIA. This flag, especially when flying high above our military installations abroad, conveys the powerful message of American devotion to the cause of human liberty and our commitment to never forget the brave Americans lost defending that liberty. On this National POW/MIA Recognition Day, our Nation takes a special moment to pay tribute to those who endured the horrors of enemy captivity and those lost in service to our country. Our Nation will continue to be resolute in our relentless pursuit of those remains of service members who have yet to return home from war and our steadfast promise to their families that their loved ones will never be forgotten.
This summer the Nahant American Legion, Mortimer G. Robbins Post 215 belatedly awarded Legion member Kenneth C. Gavin, Lieutenant Colonel, USAF (Retired) a Certificate of Recognition and Achievement of his 100th birthday and, for his outstanding service in the United States Army Air Corp and United States Air Force.
We publicly recognize Colonel Gavin, who at the beginning of his service career flew two missions into Normandy on D-Day and also flew during Operation Market Garden attempting to liberate the Netherlands as part of the US Army Air Corps which then became the US Air Force. He served during the Korean war and continued serving until his retirement as Lieutenant Colonel, USAF and Operations Officer at Otis Air Force Base.
Following retirement from active and reserve duty in service of the United States he continued, and remains today, a vital and valued member of the Nahant community and the Nahant American Legion Post 215 giving years of service, assistance and comradeship.
The Nahant American Legion Post 215 raises the US Army Service Flag in honor of Jim Steriti's Life & Service.
Vincent A. Jim” Steriti, 94 years old, died August 31, 2020 at his home in Nahant surrounded by his loving family. He was the husband of the late Elizabeth “Betty” (Oliver) Steriti. He was born in Revere, March 14, 1926, the son of the late Albert and Theresa (DiGianni) Steriti. He was raised in Revere and was a graduate of Revere High School. He moved to Nahant in 1973. He was an Army Veteran of WWII serving as a Sergeant in the Army Air Corps. He served as an airplane armorer in the Asiatic Pacific Theater with the 39th Fighter Squadron. Jim was a member of the American Legion Post in Nahant, a member of the Mottolo VFW Post 4524 in Revere. He was a communicant of St. Thomas Aquinas Church in Nahant. Jim served as a Deputy Chief in the Revere Fire Department. He retired in 1977 after 26 years of service to the City of Revere. He is survived by his two sons, Edward Steriti, a Revere Firefighter, and his wife Antonia of Nahant, Dr. John Steriti and his wife Kristen of Lynn , four daughters, Dianne Skreslet-Doucette and her husband Donald of Peabody, Linda Cataldo and her husband Robert of Wakefield, Carol Steriti and her partner Richard Sek of Revere and Judy Steriti and her partner Kevin Bailey of Nahant. He leaves a companion Joan Buccini of Revere. He was “Grumpy” to his 13 grandchildren and 9 great grandchild. He is the brother of Nora Moccia of Lynnfield, Rosemarie Maloney and her husband Bill of Peabody and the late Angelo Steriti, Father Edward Steriti OCSO, and Eleanor Misci. Jim’s funeral will be private The family prefers donations in lieu of flowers to support, St. Joseph’s Abbey, 167 North Spencer Road, Spencer, Massachusetts 01562. Guestbook at www.solimine.com.
Purple Heart Day is observed on August 7 each year and is a time for Americans to pause to remember and honor the brave men and women who were either wounded on the battlefield or paid the ultimate sacrifice with their lives.
This year, the Nahant American Legion Post 215 will join other communities around the Commonwealth of Massachusetts to "light it up purple" in remembrance and honor of the sacrifices made by Purple Heart recipients. On Friday, August 7th we will be illuminating our Flag pole and post purple. The Town of Nahant and our American Legion Post has several Purple Heart recipients.
The Purple Heart was created by General George Washington in 1782 to recognize exemplary military service. General Douglas McArthur reestablished the medal in 1932. The medal is made of a purple cloth cut in the shape of a heart with the word “Merit” sewn upon it.