As a light rain fell Friday morning, about 50 community members gathered at Riverhead’s annual Veterans Day ceremony to honor all those who served.
The ceremony, organized by the Riverhead Combined Veterans committee, was held at the lawn outside the Suffolk County Historical Society Museum where the granite World War I Memorial is located at the corner of West Main and Court streets.
As Riverhead’s VFW Post Commander Thomas Najdzion and others helped prepare for the ceremony, drivers passing by honked their horns in a show of support.
The ceremony began at 11 a.m. to coincide with the time of the signing of the agreement that ended World War I. Mr. Najdzion presided over the ceremony. John Newman led the prayer to begin the event. Following the National Anthem, Mr. Najdzion briefly spoke about the history of Veterans Day.
“We are assembled here today to pay tribute to the men and women of the community who have served the United States Armed Forces, our neighbors who have fought in defense of this country in preservation of our way of life,” Mr. Najdzion said. “Those men and women are worthy of far greater recognition than mere words, the sacrifices they made and deeds they performed shall be written in history and shall remain alive in our memories for generations to come.”
Members of the American Legion, VFW Post 2476, VFW Auxiliary and town supervisor Yvette Aguiar also addressed the audience.
“To the members of the Riverhead VFW and the American Legion who are participating in today’s event and this service, to all our soldiers across our nation and to our soldiers in Riverhead past and present, thank you for your service,” Ms. Aguiar said. “Because of your unselfish service to our country, we are here today. God bless America.”
Wreaths were presented and placed at the base of the World War I monument, which was followed by a traditional gun volley to end the ceremony.