American pg 3 11-2-17

The Mayotte-Viens American Legion Post #13 of Putnam will once again remember Veterans Day by recognizing three local U.S. Army veterans at its annual “Veterans Tribute and Celebrity Bartender Night” Nov. 9 at The Black Dog Bar and Grille in Putnam.  The evening’s events begin at 5 p.m. with the special veterans’ tribute taking place about 7.
The honorees this year are WWII Army paratrooper Victor Lippiello of Putnam, Korean war Army vet Paul Martell Sr. also a Putnam resident, and Tom Pandolfi of Woodstock, a Green Beret who served during the Vietnam war.  
According to Post #13 Commander Ronald P. Coderre, the evening begins at 5 when three presidents of the Putnam Business Association, Matt Desaulnier, Jeff Rawson and Earl Rosebrooks join with local radio celebrity Gary “O” of WINY for the first hour behind the bar..  They will be joined by former Connecticut Commissioner of Veterans Affairs Sean Connolly, who is making a guest appearance.  
The group will be followed by Putnam Bank President Tom Borner, Craig Gates owner of The Black Dog, Sarah Bentley of Body by Design and Chuck Bentley of Woodstock.  From 7 to 8 group greeting friends behind the bar includes local music and stage stars Linda Colangelo and Laura Crosetti who’ll be joined by WTIC Television Channel 3 anchor Kevin Hogan and one of Connecticut’s top chefs James Martin of 85 Main.  The final hour of the evening will see the husband/wife team of Mary Jane and Jack Burke of Killingly, Woodstock Academy Headmaster Chris Sandford and Sean Hendricks, Killingly town manager, serving libations. 
“This promises to be a spectacular evening filled with spirit and emotion.  It’s an honor to recognize our veterans every year.  It’s recognition that’s long overdue,” said Coderre.
The evening will also include the singing of the National Anthem by U.S. Air Force veteran Maurice “Moe” Coderre, and God Bless the USA and a tribute to the five branches of the service by Linda Colangelo.
Lippiello was a paratrooper who made two jumps behind enemy lines in the Pacific Theater from 1941 to 1946 during WWII.  During his time in the Army he made a total of 29 jumps.  Martell served in what is often referred to as “America’s Forgotten War,” the Korean Conflict, from 1949 to 1952.  He was a machine gunner in the 113th Ordnance Company.  Pandolfi was one of the first American troops to set foot in southeast Asia as one of President Kennedy’s original 5,000 elite Green Berets.  He entered the country as a military advisor to the people of Laos, Cambodia and Thailand, serving from 1961 to 1964.
There is no admission and the program is open to the public.  The proceeds from the evening, which include tips for the bartenders, a super drawing and auction, benefit the Post #13 charity efforts and programs.  The Post provides Americanism programs in the Putnam Elementary School, an oratorical contest in the high school, sponsors young men to Boys’ State, supports the TriTown American Legion Baseball Program, provides a scholarship to a high school senior and a veteran at Quinebaug Valley Community College and offers assistance during the holidays to a veterans family and the homeless veterans in Jewett City.  The “Hometown Hero” banner project and the flags on the World War I Veterans Memorial Bridge are also part of the Post’s funding programs.
“Our Post is an integral part of the Putnam community.  We accept our responsibility of being a good citizen and helping others.  Or theme this year is, “Together for Veterans, Community and Country,” which we try to live every day,” said Coderre.  In addition to Coderre, the committee includes Dee and Rick Carnahan, Alan and Jo-Anne Joslin, Brian Maynard, Michael Vassar, Victor Kratz, Donald Steinbrick, Eric Quinn. 
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