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Small Turnout For Sunnyside/Woodside Veterans

Nov. 12, 2012 By Bill Parry

A small crowd of about 40 people gathered yesterday at John V. Daniels Park in Woodside to participate in a morning ceremony in recognition of Veterans Day.

George Custance, the Veterans of Foreign Wars’ Post 2813’s quartermaster, was disappointed by the small crowd. “Maybe people got confused,” he said. “Today [Sunday] is the official holiday—while tomorrow it’s observed.”

Many of this community’s local veterans spent most of  Sunday at the VFW Post at 51-27 Queens Blvd., where a buffet was spread out on the pool table and the bar was full.

Vets of all ages joined in—along with their family and friends. “This is our second most important day on our calendar after Memorial Day,” said Service Commander Mike Smith. “We’re open all day long until everybody leaves.”

The only female member of the Post, Gulf War Veteran Luz Fernandez, said “I grew up in Woodside, so it’s great coming back. It’s like being with family.”

Michael Manchon just moved to Woodside from Norfolk, Va., after a nine-year career in the Navy. He was walking his dogs Sunday morning when a member of the “Ladies Auxiliary of VFW” spotted his USS Oscar Austin cap. “She invited me to join them. I’m the Post’s newest member.”

Pedro Nieves is the oldest. The 87-year old is a Veteran of WWII and Korea and said, “It’s always great to see my buddies.”

The Commander of the Post, Jerry Cisco, stopped tending bar to lead a standing ovation when Jimmy Drew arrived. The military policeman returned to Sunnyside just four days ago after finishing a tour in Afghanistan, following a separate tour in Iraq.

“I have two daughters, a four year old and a 26-month old,” Drew said. “I’ve been spending my time with them, but wanted to stop in and say, Hi.”

Drew brought back two American flags from Afghanistan: one for the post and the other for the Ladies Auxiliary. The president of the auxiliary, Sandra Bigitschke, was happy with the day’s events, adding that nothing was planned for Monday.

“We do everything on our day, the official holiday,” she said.

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king of Queens

There is only one Military that matters and that’s the British Military! You all have been Besmirched.


Need better advertising of the event.
..Still a lot of people proud to celebrate the day
with our vets and active men/women ..

Sunnyside/Woodside has always been a patriotic
place to live …..

Craic Dealer

These splendid American humans are being sent to fight for Corporate Profits and they’re starting to wake up.

“I spent 33 years and four months in active military service and during that period I spent most of my time as a high class muscle man for Big Business, for Wall Street and the bankers. In short, I was a racketeer, a gangster for capitalism. I helped make Mexico and especially Tampico safe for American oil interests in 1914. I helped make Haiti and Cuba a decent place for the National City Bank boys to collect revenues in. I helped in the raping of half a dozen Central American republics for the benefit of Wall Street. I helped purify Nicaragua for the International Banking House of Brown Brothers in 1902-1912. I brought light to the Dominican Republic for the American sugar interests in 1916. I helped make Honduras right for the American fruit companies in 1903. In China in 1927 I helped see to it that Standard Oil went on its way unmolested. Looking back on it, I might have given Al Capone a few hints. The best he could do was to operate his racket in three districts. I operated on three continents.” – Major General Smedley Darlington Butler

Craic Dealer

“Cliches about supporting the troops are designed to distract from failed policies, policies promoted by powerful special interests that benefit from war, anything to steer the discussion away from the real reasons the war in Iraq will not end anytime soon.” – Ron Paul


I think that most people like me, have the greatest respect for the men and women of the US military. What I think is happening here is there is less and less enthusiasm for the endless, profit-driven wars we seem to be engaging in as well as zero respect for the leadership in Washington that gets us into these wars and don’t even have the guts to officially declare war.


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