Thank you from Canton Veterans Fund

By

Dear Editor:

While preparing for this year’s Memorial Day parade and ceremony, we stood at the American flag in the Veterans Memorial Park and felt a great sense of satisfaction. Finally, the park feels finished.

When I took the position as director and agent of the Canton Veterans Services Department in 2001, I knew there were projects I wanted to complete to honor, remember, and support the past and present veterans of Canton. Projects take money. Thus, in 2002, the Canton Veterans Fund was born. Over the years, many people have chosen the fund as a place to donate in their loved ones’ memories. Motorcycle rides, golf tournaments, fundraiser parties, and recently, a birthday gift request have all added donations to the fund, which, since its inception, has received over $400,000 in donations, vastly exceeding our expectations and raising our gratitude on behalf of our veterans to incredible heights.

Some of the expenses these donations have funded are invisible to all but those who reach out in need of one-time assistance with emergent issues like impending homelessness, legal challenges, medical expenses, transportation problems, and more. Because of the fund, we are able to help quickly without impacting town, state, or federal budgets and programs.

Some of the funds have gone to sponsor events that people may not see unless they attend, like the graduation ceremonies held for our World War II, Korean, and Vietnam War veterans who left high school before receiving their diplomas to serve our country; the 2011 Welcome Home ceremony honoring our Vietnam veterans; the annual Veterans Day breakfast, or our monthly veterans coffee hours.

There are some projects, however, that stand out for all who come to Canton to see, most notably the Fallen Heroes Memorial Street Sign program and the Veterans Memorial Park and Walk of Honor at Canton Corner Cemetery. The monuments were consolidated to this one central location in 2004. Memorial benches soon followed. The branch flagpoles went up in 2015, and flagpole lighting was added in 2016. Most recently, new plantings were added to frame in the monuments and Walk of Honor, and the row of arborvitaes at the fence along the edge of the cemetery was completed. These trees will mature to form a green wall bordering the park.

The Fallen Heroes Memorial Street Signs grace 77 of our intersections, telling the story of Canton’s sons and daughters who gave their lives in service to our country. All of this was accomplished with donations to the Veterans Fund, requiring no taxpayer dollars, no budget line items. All of this helps create a culture supported by the town of Canton that tells our veterans and their loved ones, “We see you, we honor you, and we remember you.” The park and the street signs will continue this mission for generations to come, and we are very proud of these accomplishments.

None of this would have been possible without the donations that come in from all of you, week after week, to the Canton Veterans Fund. Thank you so much for supporting our veterans in such a tangible, helpful way. Canton, we salute you!

Tony Andreotti, Director and Agent

Jennifer Trethewey, Office Administrator

Town of Canton Department of Veterans Services

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avatar Posted by on Jun 9 2017. Filed under Featured Content, From One Citizen to Another, Opinion. Both comments and pings are currently closed.
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