WATERBURY, Conn. (WTNH) — The Waterbury Veterans Memorial Committee is on a mission and it is easy to see throughout the city.
Banners on Bank Street, a special park dedicated to every Waterbury veteran whose served in every single American conflict dating back to the Revolutionary War, and the annual Veterans Day ceremony outside city hall are just some of the ways the committee members show their dedication to those who served.
Their goal is simple — to make Waterbury always remember these brave men and women.
“We can never forget those people who came before us, put on the uniform,” said Jack Shea, Chairman of the Waterbury Veterans Memorial Committee. “Men and women sacrificed — went to fight in a foreign country… for our freedom, way of life.”
At the ceremony on Veterans Day, everyone from local dignitaries, like State Representative Geraldo Reyes, Jr. to the teenaged members of a group called The Brass City Young Marines joined in.
These are kids who pledge to live good, positive, productive lives giving back to their country and community. They were part of the ceremony and seemed to be in awe of the large crowd that showed up under threatening skies — many members of the crowd, veterans themselves.
“It really brings pride to come out here as a Young Marine and just to see all people come together who have served and honoring those who served,” said 14-year-old Lana Kolpa.
“For me, it represents thanking and supporting all of the veterans past and present for their sacrifices even those that came home and are still scarred and hurt immensely it just means a big deal for me to support all our veterans,” said Brass City Young Marines member, Ryan Spring.
For Mary Kight, a Gold Star Mother who lost her son, Michael, during a helicopter crash in Vietnam, seeing the large turnout today:
“Made me feel proud of my city,” she told News 8.
And seeing the group of Brass City Young Marines there made her feel good, too.
“It means we have a good future to look forward to,” Mary said.