OSWEGO — It’s always the right time of year to celebrate our nation’s heroes but the 100th anniversary of Armistice Day Sunday marks a special and action-packed weekend-long Veterans Day celebration throughout Oswego County.
Saturday night is Military Appreciation Night at SUNY Oswego and the men’s hockey team will host Hobart College. The Lakers will use the opportunity to honor all veterans and active duty members of the United States Armed Forces with a complimentary ticket with proper identification.
On Saturday morning, a Veterans Day run and celebration will take place in the city of Oswego. The race will begin on West First Street near City Hall and end at Lieutenant Donald Hill Memorial Plaza. Registration begins at 8:30 a.m, with the race starting at 10 a.m. There will also be a raffle drawing, prizes, food and music.
Fultonians will gather at Veterans Park across from City Hall on Sunday, Nov. 11, at 11 a.m. for a memorial ceremony. At the ceremony, Garry Visconti will be presented with the 2019 Veteran of the Year Award. Visconti is president of the Fulton Veterans Council and served in the U.S. Navy for 20 years. Immediately following, The Polish House will host a free luncheon.
In Oswego Sunday afternoon at 1 p.m. there will be a public dedication of the Veterans Memorial Park World War I Memorial at Veterans Park on the west linear riverwalk. Local officials, press, civilians and veterans will be in attendance.
On Sunday at 2:30 p.m., SUNY Oswego will host veterans for a World War I Memorial unveiling at Sheldon Hall on the west side of campus. The memorial plaque remembers the 20 college students who went overseas in 1918, including Jesse Merle Hewitt, who was killed in action. Hewitt Union on campus is named in his honor.
The First World War ended on the eleventh day of the eleventh month at the eleventh hour in 1918. At that time, almost 20 million people had died since the commencement of the war in July of 1914. World War I was called “the war to end all wars,” until the Second World War just decades later claimed approximately 60 million lives.
On Thursday, Frederick Leighton Elementary School in Oswego hosted a Veterans Day assembly, a recent addition to the school’s annual traditions as kindergarten through sixth graders invite their family members who have served in the armed forces to join them for recognition. The event was instituted by Leighton Principal Kara Shore, herself an Air Force Veteran.
“It was a wonderful turnout,” said Jamie Hamlin, Director of Oswego County’s Veterans Agency and a Navy veteran.
Monday night, Hamlin will be awarded the non-Masonic Veteran of the Year Award by the Scottish Rite at the Masonic Memorial Hall in Syracuse beginning at 6 p.m.