‘WE’RE AMERICANS’ County Courthouse Lawn Full As Community Honors Fallen

‘WE’RE AMERICANS’

County Courthouse Lawn Full

As Community Honors Fallen

Marine Doug Walker, top photo, Cooperstown Veterans’ Club commander and emcee at this morning’s Memorial Day commemoration in front of the County Courthouse, invites World War II veterans Peter Martin, center, and Bruno Talevi, left, to provide brief remarks to a gathering that filled the lawn, sidewalk and pavement in front of the Soldiers’ & Sailors Monument.  Right inset, featured speaker Floyd Bourne, Korean War veteran, remembers attending the same commemoration 73 years ago, “holding my grandmother’s hand.”  A Cooperstown native and retired Richfield Springs CS teacher and coach, he recalled the Navajo Code Talkers of World War II and the 442nd Infantry Regiment of Nisei soldiers –  second-generation Japanese-Americans – fighting in Europe.  “When it comes down to it, we’re all Americans,” Bourne said.  He recalled generations of immigrants who “went to work, they built lives, they built America,” a process he said is continuing today.  Noting that no one’s ethnic background is mentioned when a soldier is buried in Arlington National Cemetery, he concluded, “We’re Americans first.”  Inset left is flag-toting Kensington Kania, attending with her grandmother, Hilda Natius of Coopertown. (Jim Kevlin/AllOTSEGO.com)


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