By Aidan Johnson
As Veterans Day once again arrived on Nov. 11, members of the Veterans of Foreign Wars Post 6249 in Rocky Point took the time to pay their respects to all those who have served in the military.
“As a veteran, I stand before you with a profound sense of pride, humility and gratitude,” said Joe Cognitore, commander of Post 6249, in a speech to those in attendance. “I’ve been where many of you and our fellow service members have been, serving our great country with unwavering dedication, yet facing the many challenges that come with it.”
Cognitore made it a point to focus on the importance of Veterans Day not only from the perspective of being a veteran and VFW post member but also from “the collective duty we as U.S. citizens share in honoring our veterans and ensuring the truth and essence of this day is not forgotten.”
“Veterans Day isn’t really about acknowledging our service or expressing gratitude,” he continued. “It is about making Veterans Day a touchstone for understanding, education and appreciation for our Americans.”
“And I believe it’s our job as veterans to help ensure the true significance of this day isn’t lost in the noise of the [store] sales or everyday life,” he added.
Suffolk County Legislator Nick Caracappa (C-Selden) spoke at the event and expressed appreciation for the national holiday and the local veterans community.
“If you think about it, what these guys do, especially at this post, they are out in our communities every single day making a difference, as are many other posts,” he said in an interview. “All veterans continue to serve our communities and our country, so it’s only fitting that we recognize them and appreciate them and realize that they are out there on a daily basis.”
Cognitore mentioned upcoming events at the post, including the opening of the Suffolk County World War II and Military History Museum on Dec. 7 located at the former Rocky Point train station across the street from the VFW post, and a Christmas party on Dec. 9.