Pattye Benson

Community Matters

Berwyn Veterans Memorial

Veteran’s Day

As we express our gratitude, we must never forget that the highest appreciation is not to utter words, but to live by them.
~John Fitzgerald Kennedy

A bit of Veteran’s Day history . . .

In 1918, on the eleventh hour of the eleventh day in the eleventh month, the world rejoiced and celebrated. After four years of bitter war, an armistice was signed. At that time the war was called The Great War, or The War to End All Wars. The armistice between the Allied nations and the Central Powers went into effect on the eleventh hour of the eleventh day of the eleventh month of the year 1918.

November 11, 1919 was set aside as Armistice Day in the United States, to remember the sacrifices that men and women made during World War I in order to ensure a lasting peace. On Armistice Day, soldiers who survived the war marched in a parade through their home towns. Politicians and veteran officers gave speeches and held ceremonies of thanks for the peace they had won.

Congress voted Armistice Day a federal holiday in 1938, 20 years after the war ended. But Americans realized that the previous war would not be the last one. After the Second World War, Armistice Day continued to be observed on November 11.

After World War II and the Korean War, in 1953 townspeople in Emporia, Kansas called the holiday Veterans’ Day in gratitude to the veterans in their town. Soon after, Congress passed a bill introduced by a Kansas congressman renaming the federal holiday to Veterans’ Day. This day marked the beginning of the tradition of honoring all those Americans who participated in various wars for the United States, and not just the World War I veterans alone.

Though it was initially decided that the 11th day of the 11th month of every year will be observed as the Veterans Day, in 1971 under President Nixon, the day was shifted to fourth Monday of the October month. As per the new change, the Veterans Day was celebrated on 25th October in 1971. This change, however, resulted in great deal of confusion, and eventually Veterans Day was shifted back to 11th November in 1978. In 2001,

Today as we celebrate Veterans Day and the men and women who bravely served our great nation, we remember those soldiers still serving in Iraq and Afghanistan. Veterans Day is set aside to remember and honor the bravery of our men and women in uniform, but it’s something we as Americans should try to do everyday.

Consider this statistic as you observe Veteran’s Day — between Sept. 9 and Oct. 29 of this year, the Department of Defense announced the deaths of 87 men and women while serving in Afghanistan and Iraq. During that same period, we have heard plenty of talk about celebrity divorces and scandals, but how much did we hear about these 87 brave Americans?

Friends of Local Family in Need . . . Can you Help?

For any of you that have lived in this community for more than a couple of years, you probably have heard the name ‘Nudy’. One of the members of the extended Nudy family, Fred and his wife Pearl, are pillars in the area — having lived here their entire lives. Fred is on the board of the Berwyn Veterans Memorial and Pearl serves on the Tredyffrin Historic Preservation Trust board with me. Either of one of them would gladly give you their last dime or shirt off their back; in other words, just wonderfully good people.

I received an email from Pearl which I would like to share with you — all the details are contained within the email if you wish to help. Time is of the essence. Please don’t doubt the sincerity of the email or the depth of the Nudy’s committment to this cause and helping this young family!

Hello Everyone!
3 weeks ago a young family came home from a visit to family members and found fire trucks blocking their road. As they made their way up the street, they realized it was their home that had burnt down to the ground.
This family lives in the Poconos. I have met them. The Dad, Tom, works in Manhattan as an elevator inspector repair man. Rides by bus almost 2 hours each way every day. The Mom, Kathy, works at home with 5 children, ages 12, 8, 6,4, and 5 months.
They were renting and had no renter’s insurance – NO fire insurance! Tom told me that he can meet their day to day expenses but with 5 kids, they have no savings. They found a home not too far from the house that burned for the same rent.
The community held a clothing drive and household supplies right away. The Red Cross gave them money to get the staples for their pantry. Family and friends have provided a bed for the parents and 3 twin beds for the 4 children. My daughter and I gave them a crib and dressing table for the baby. Karen also sent them bags of clean almost new baby clothes.
Here’s how this breaks down: One boy is sleeping on the floor in a sleeping bag. The kids bedrooms have nothing in them. They need stuff.
I did some shopping around and gathered the approx. cost of giving these kids some sense of life back. Dressers cost about $130 each and they need 5. Bed, with mattress and box spring, about $300. Here’s the rest:
night tables with lamps about $30
bookshelves – need 4, about $40 each
sheet sets – or bed in a bag – $30 to $50. they need 4
I think each person, including the parents, should have NEW pillows – $ 105 for 7
waste baskets and hampers for each child – $100
For approx $250 per child per bedroom – with your help – we can help to restore some order to the lives of 5 beautiful children who did nothing to deserve having their lives all but wiped out.
In my lifetime, I have known 2 families to loose everything to the devastation of a house fire. In both cases, no children lived there and the family had insurance. Of course, you can’t “rebuild” the lost possessions of love and family. But, once settled, both families went on to live normal lives. Having some financial help from insurance gave those two families a foundation on which to rebuild. I know that it was not easy for either but they managed with the goodness of friends and family and the love of God!
Imagine if in a blink of an eye, everything you have is gone. Now imagine how that must feel to a 12 year boy. Mario struggles every day to help with family chores, and get over the shock of loosing those possessions he treasured: his bed, his alarm clock, his socks, his favorite baseball jersey. his favorite games, his favorite everything!
Branden , age 8 and Matthew, age 6, are not old enough to really understand what has happened. They just know that now they live somewhere else and their rooms are empty where once they had clothes, books, furniture, and stuff.
Niamya is just 4 years old. She is probably the most confused. Every day she asks for her dolls, books, toys, teddy bears, pretty dresses and a place to sit and eat breakfast.
Yes, the day I was there, they did not have a table and chairs. They have since had one donated but with only 4 chairs. Better than nothing and they are very appreciative.
So here’s my plan: If you would just send me a gift card to Wal-mart or K-mart, a check or cash in any denomination, I will buy the “stuff” these kids need.
First, I will start with their bedrooms – new pillows very important.
Second: window blinds, shades or curtains.
Third: books, games, stuffed animals, sports equipment for the boys, and a doll or two for Niamya.
Fourth: art and school supplies, book bags
If I should get enough money, I would buy NEW school clothes for Mario. At 12 he can’t start school wearing someone elses clothes and shoes.
This family lives on the top of Mt. Pocono and it gets very cold up there. They will need blankets and comforters, coats and hats, and boots and gloves!
YES – I am asking for you to reach down and help this family. I give you my word and my personal guarantee that whatever money is sent to me, will be spent exactly as I have outlined in this email.
Time is of the essence! Fred and I will be returning to the Poconos on the 6th of August – that gives you about a week to get your donation to me.
Please – if I can collect just $500 per child, we can make a real difference. They can start school with new book bags, and some new clothes.
For those of you who know me, if I had the resources, I’d do this myself! I don’t. I need your help.
You know where I live. If I’m not home, please leave your donation in the milk box by the front door. My address: P.O. box 100, Berwyn,PA 19312
My phone: 610-975-9297 Cell: 610-908-5854
Please print this email and share it with your families, friends, neighbors, church and social groups, business groups and who ever else is out there.
May the wind be at your back and the love of God be in your heart!
Pearl and Fred
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