Fundrais­ers sup­port D.C. trip

The Oneida Daily Dispatch (Oneida, NY) - - Front Page - By The Dis­patch Staff news­room@onei­dadis­patch.com @Onei­daDis­patch on Twit­ter

Fundrais­ing con­tin­ues for lo­cal vet­er­ans to have the chance to travel to Wash­ing­ton D.C. and visit the Na­tional World War II Me­mo­rial.

“This is a thank you to the vet­er­ans for their ser­vice to the coun­try,” said Er­win Smith, who has spear­headed the trip since its be­gin­nings a decade ago. “It gives them clo­sure to go to the wall and to see the graves.”

Two up­com­ing events will be hosted to raise money for the vet­eran’s trip to D.C., one by the Madi­son County War Vet­er­ans and the other by Oneida Ro­tary.

On Feb. 20, WAVEM Com­mit­tee Pres­i­dent Doug Gin­ney said there will be a scal­loped pota­toes and ham din­ner at the Chit­te­nango Amer­i­can Le­gion from 4-7 p.m. Ad­mis­sion is $7 for se­niors and vet­er­ans, $8 for the gen­eral public, and free for chil­dren ages 3 and younger. All pro­ceeds will sup­port the D.C. trip.

The vet­eran’s trip all started when Smith’s friend and WWII vet­eran Louis Bal­ducci of Canas­tota went to the ded­i­ca­tion for the me­mo­rial with his son. Smith re­mem­bers Bal­ducci sug­gest­ing he and Smith fig­ure out a way to get more vet­er­ans down to see it.

As part of that, Bal­ducci would host a spaghetti din­ner and on Feb. 24, the Oneida Ro­tary will con­tinue that tra­di­tion. The spaghetti din­ner at the Canas­tota VFW will be from 4:30-7 p.m. Tick­ets will be $8 per per­son.

It costs $345 a per­son for the D.C. trip and

the Oneida Ro­tary pays for it through do­na­tions and fundrais­ing.

Cur­rently, 52 peo­ple are signed up for the April 9-11 trip. Orig­i­nally a one day af­fair, Smith said there was not enough time in the day for ev­ery­thing, in­clud­ing vis­it­ing from the me­mo­rial, a num­ber of mu­se­ums, and Ar­ling­ton Ceme­tery.

Those in­ter­ested in spon­sor­ing a vet­eran or do­nat­ing to the trip in gen­eral can con­tact Smith at 315-761-9450.

DIS­PATCH STAFF PHOTO

Canas­tota VFWPost 600on Dec. 7, 2017.

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