Wednesday Unwind - Thank you Veterans!

Members of Pinehills Veterans Group continue to serve in Plymouth

November 11, 2020     People in The Pinehills, Wednesday Unwind

The Pinehills is home to many interesting residents: celebrities, writers, photographers, artists, musicians, teachers and more. But there is one special group who, especially today, deserves recognition and thanks - the Veterans Group at The Pinehills.

The Veterans Group at The Pinehills began in 2006 with two primary goals. The first, to recognize Veterans living in The Pinehills, (currently there are nearly 300.) The second, to raise money to help veterans in need in the Plymouth area.

Among the ranks of vets at The Pinehills are two World War II veterans, close to a dozen Korean War veterans, and hundreds of Vietnam Veterans. Members served in the Army, Navy, Air Force, Marines, Coast Guard, and National Guard, including the Reserves for each branch.

The average member of the Veterans Group at The Pinehills served in the military over 50 years ago, but the lessons they learned there are eternal: discipline, respect for authority, camaraderie, leadership, appreciation for other cultures, self-confidence, teamwork, duty, honor, country.


Short History of Veterans Day

We asked The Veterans Group at The Pinehills to provide us with a refresher on Veterans Day. Originally called “Armistice Day,” Veterans Day was intended to serve as a reminder to nations to always strive for peaceful relationships. It was put into effect on the eleventh hour of the eleventh day of the eleventh month in 1918.

For that reason, Nov.11, 1918 was largely considered the end of “the war to end all wars” and dubbed Armistice Day. In 1926, Congress officially recognized it as the end of the war, and in 1938, it became an official holiday. Primarily, a day set aside to honor veterans of World War I. But then World War II and the Korean War happened, so in 1954, at the urging of veterans services organizations, Congress amended the commemoration by changing the word “armistice” to “veterans” so the day would honor United States veterans of all wars. President Eisenhower signed the bill proclaiming November 11 as Veterans Day.


Supporting Plymouth Charitable Organizations

It’s a mission of the Veterans Group at The Pinehills to raise money in support of veterans in need. The group works with five local charitable organizations in the Plymouth area: Plymouth Veterans Office Emergency Fund, The Nathan Hale Foundation , Heidrea For Heroes, Homes For Our Troops and Habitat for Humanity/Veteran Build Division. Here’s a little more about them.

Homes For Our Troops
Bill Ivey, Executive Director, Homes for Our Troops, had this to say to the group: “Many thanks to the Pinehills Veterans Group for their exceptionally generous support of Homes for Our Troops and our Veterans. Your generosity has truly helped to transform the lives of seriously injured Massachusetts Veterans, and your superb effort to spread the word about Homes for Our Troops has brought us additional donors and supporters. Together we are making a lifelong difference for these brave men and women.”

Heidrea For Heroes
Funds donated assist veterans in many ways. Quality-of-life help such as a money for a tank of gas, an energy bill, or eyeglasses. Maybe a delivery of a holiday basket when no one else seems to remember. Workforce readiness programs; transportation to medical appointments, food, clothing, day outings, and Thanksgiving meals. The list goes on.

The Nathan Hale Foundation's Three Hart’s Farm Veterans Growing Opportunities
Just down the road from The Pinehills on Beaver Dam Road is Three Hart’s Farm Veterans Growing Opportunities. The farm is operated by Chris Hart, founder and executive director of the Nathan Hale Foundation, which operates as part of a support system for local veterans. The farm is a place for veterans to learn agricultural skills that can be used to start their own farm.

Habitat for Humanity of Greater Plymouth
The Veterans Group at The Pinehills (and The Pinehills) supports the HFHGP efforts to provide permanent housing for veterans. There are currently two Veterans Build Habitat homes nearing completion on Long Pond Road. Soon they will be ready to welcome veterans and their families.


There’s More
In addition, the Veterans Group participates in placing flags at the National Cemetery in Bourne prior to Memorial Day and Veterans Day. At Christmas time, they place wreaths on the gravesites. They also hold an annual flag raising ceremony at Great Island in The Pinehills each Veterans Day. Unfortunately, this year there will not be a flag raising ceremony, but Veterans Group President, Bruce Riccio tells us , “We’re all looking forward to continuing the tradition in 2021.”


How You Can Get Involved
If you live at The Pinehills and are a veteran interested in being a member, please contact: Bruce Riccio at bmriccio@comcast.net. Donations are very much appreciated. If you are able to make a donation at this time, please send a check made payable to: Pinehills Veteran Group, Attn: Stuart Heller, 8 Henloe Green, Plymouth, MA 02360.

Most importantly, to all those who have served, and those who continue to serve – THANK YOU!

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