STAMFORD, Conn. — Dozens of veterans were honored for their service during a morning of recognition at the Stamford Government Center on Wednesday.
Veterans from several wars, ranging from World War II to more recent conflicts, were honored by officials, including state Sen. Carlo Leone.
The speakers stood at a podium in front of a glass case containing a hand-drawn poster, created in honor of Stamford veterans.
Alvin Taliaferro, a Stamford resident and longtime substitute teacher in the Greenwich Public Schools, said it has been a long time since he served in Vietnam. But he was happy to receive the CT Veterans Service Medal.
“It’s something that I can give to my kids and grandkids,” Taliaferro said. He hopes his award reminds them of the important civic responsibility of serving in the military.
A humble veteran, Taliaferro, said he was debating whether to attend the ceremony, but said his wife and kids encouraged him to go.
Several families were also in attendance. Some accepted the awards posthumously.
In his remarks, Stamford Mayor David Martin told the veterans of a recent service he attended for eight deceased and forgotten veterans , who had no family members to attend. But others turned out to honor them.
After that ceremony, Martin was so moved that he came to a realization.
“Honor is a little bit like love,” Martin said. “The more you give, the more you have.”
Connecticut’s Commissioner of Veterans’ Affairs Sean Connolly said 2015 marks two special anniversaries: the 70th anniversary of the end of World War II and the 40th anniversary of the end of the Vietnam War.
He led an interactive set of remarks, asking veterans to raise their hands when he announced the conflict they had served in.
Connolly, a decorated veteran who was named to the position in February, said Wednesday’s ceremony is “one of the greatest honors that is part of my job.”
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