, Newburyport, MA

Local News

November 12, 2013

A new tradition meets Newburyport veterans

NEWBURYPORT — Standing besides six granite posts installed inside the city’s veterans memorial across from City Hall in Brown Square, World War II veterans and others rang memorial bells each time the name of a recently deceased local veteran was read by Mayor Donna Holaday.

The ringing of memorial bells and the posts, donated by a local family, marked the newest custom in the city’s longstanding tradition of honoring those each Veterans Day who fought and died for this country.

The city’s veterans agent, Kevin Hunt, again served as master of ceremonies for the roughly 90-minute event that began around 10:45 a.m. with a short parade from Bartlet Mall to the steps of City Hall. Right at 11 a.m. accompanied by the un-choreographed striking of church bells and a stiff wind, Hunt began the day’s official program.

Joining him at City Hall were City Councilors Ed Cameron, Richard Sullivan Jr., Ari Herzog and Robert Cronin along with School Committee member Steven Cole. U.S. Rep. John Tierney was also on hand and spoke briefly regarding the federal government’s commitment to make sure the nation’s veterans hospitals, clinics and bases were fully funded.

“It’s the least we can do,” Tierney said.

Hunt discussed the history of Veterans Day, which used to be called Armistice Day in reference to the end of World War I, and the treatment of veterans returning home from wars spanning back to the American Revolution. World War II veterans were among those applauded and labeled as heroes by the country.

“It seemed as though we couldn’t do enough for them,” Hunt said.

But returning Vietnam War veterans couldn’t say the same as people called them warmongers, baby killers and drug addicts. Television shows like “Hawaii Five-O” and almost all movies with the exception of John Wayne’s “The Green Berets” portrayed them negatively as well, Hunt said.

Text Only | Photo Reprints

Port Pics
AP Video
Raw: Corruption Trial Begins for Former Va Gov. The Carbon Trap: US Exports Global Warming UN Security Council Calls for Gaza Cease-fire Traditional African Dishes Teach Healthy Eating 13 Struck by Lightning on Calif. Beach Baseball Hall of Famers Inducted Israel, Hamas Trade Fire Despite Truce in Gaza Italy's Nibali Set to Win First Tour De France Raw: Shipwrecked Concordia Completes Last Voyage Raw: Sea Turtle Hatchlings Emerge From Nest Raw: Massive Dust Storm Covers Phoenix 12-hour Cease-fire in Gaza Fighting Begins Raw: Bolivian Dancers Attempt to Break Record Raw: Israel, Palestine Supporters Rally in US Raw: Air Algerie Flight 5017 Wreckage Virginia Governor Tours Tornado Aftermath Judge Faces Heat Over Offer to Help Migrant Kids Kangaroo Goes Missing in Oklahoma More M17 Bodies Return, Sanctions on Russia Grow Raw: Deadly Tornado Hits Virginia Campground
Special Features