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Peace Plaza Veterans Day

Bronx Times

For the 20th annual Veterans Day, Peace Memorial Plaza will be the scene of a remembrance of fallen, deceased and surviving military personnel who have answered the call of duty to their country.

The Morris Park Kiwanis, Morris Park Community Association, and Mary Queen of Peace Council of the Knights of Columbus will be holding a 15-minute service on Veterans Day, Friday, November 11 at 11 a.m. at the plaza, located at the corner of Williamsbridge Road and Pelham Parkway North.

The remembrance has been taking place both on Veterans Day and Memorial Day since the plaza was completed in June 1991, said Al Corcillo, past grand knight of the Mary Queen of Peace Council and a World War II veteran.

“First and foremost, we do it every Memorial and Veterans day in honor of our living and departed comrades,” Corcillo said. “It is for the friends of the family of living and deceased veterans from the community.”

The program will consist of changing of the flag flying above the plaza, the Pledge of Allegiance, national anthem, a prayer service led by a chaplain, playing of taps, and acknowledgement of elected officials and other dignitaries, Corcillo said.

There should be a color guard, and often John Dormi and Sons Funeral Home at 1121 Morris Park Avenue donates flags for the occasion, Corcillo said.

“This is just a way of remembering and honoring those who served for their dedication to their community and country, whether they saw combat or not,” said MPCA president Al D’Angelo.

“They also serve, who only stand and wait,” D’Angelo said, repeating a popular phrase that honors those who decide to serve their country, regardless of whether or not they see action.

The Occupy Wall Street protestors would do themselves well to come to Peace Place and remember the veterans who gave them the freedom to protest, D’Angleo said.

The ceremony is also particularly significant in terms of undoing a wrong from the past, D’Angelo said.

“When our soldiers came back home from Vietnam, they came back to jeers from their fellow citizens,” D’Angelo said. “That should never happen again, and now we have a chance to turn it around and honor our returning troops.”

Patrick Rocchio can be reach via e-mail at or by phone at (718) 742-3393

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