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HERO Act ‘monumental’ for veterans, but one expert says it falls short on housing
06-25-2024 2:49 PM

By ALEXA LEWIS

A leading veterans agent in the region says an expansive bill soon to become law designed to improve the lives of Massachusetts veterans is “monumental” for its expanded inclusion efforts, benefits, and health care provisions, but the measure fails to...

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Bronze plaque will commemorate Orange’s Memorial Hall, torn down in 1996
06-10-2024 4:39 PM

By DOMENIC POLI

ORANGE — Three local women are awaiting the arrival of a bronze plaque to be embedded onto the face of a new memorial stone installed to commemorate the former Memorial Hall building that stood for 104 years before being demolished in 1996.Pam Rand,...


Petersham veteran travels to Washington for Memorial Day
05-22-2024 3:11 PM

By GREG VINE

PETERSHAM – Eighty years ago, the seat often occupied by Vincent “Bill” Purple was that of a pilot in a B-17 bomber flying dangerous missions over Germany during the last months of World War II.On Monday, the Army Air Corps veteran, who recently...


Heath native’s bill honoring fallen heroes introduced in Congress
05-13-2024 2:35 PM

By DOMENIC POLI

Legislation drafted by a Heath native with the intent of recognizing those killed serving in the U.S. military has been introduced in both chambers of Congress.Keith Sherman, who now lives in North Carolina, worked diligently on multiple drafts of a...


Volunteers repaint Athol gazebo for veterans memorial service
05-05-2024 5:01 PM

By GREG VINE

ATHOL – Several volunteers recently helped with a new paint job for the bandstand on the Uptown Common, in time for the annual “We Remember” ceremony.The gazebo was painted and decorated in preparation for the annual Athol Congregational Church event,...


Wendell World War II memorial found online in California, being returned to town
04-09-2024 5:00 PM

By DOMENIC POLI

WENDELL — Thirty-four states in this country have a Springfield. Twenty-four include a Madison. As for a Wendell, that number sits at five — in Massachusetts, North Carolina, New Hampshire, Minnesota and Idaho.That’s why determining that the Bay State...


U.S. Rep. Neal scopes out new veterans home in Holyoke
04-05-2024 4:35 PM

By EMILEE KLEIN

HOLYOKE — Congressman Richard Neal often frequented the Soldiers’ Home in Holyoke years ago to visit his grandfather and uncle — the latter of whom served in the Korean War for exactly one year, one month and one day — and witnessed firsthand the...


In Winchendon, Wreathes Across America ceremony enters 15th year
12-05-2023 5:00 PM

By GREG VINE

WINCHENDON – During the holidays, Bridget Marinelli wants people to remember those that sacrificed all so that they could celebrate the season.Thirteen years ago, Marinelli, a Winchendon resident and member of the American Legion Auxiliary, took over...


LGBTQ+ veterans feature in Healey's omnibus benefits bill
11-12-2023 5:00 PM

By SAM DRYSDALE

BOSTON — Calling it “historic,” Gov. Maura Healey unveiled legislation this week — timed to coincide with Veterans Day — that will increase benefits, modernize services and promote inclusivity for hundreds of thousands of Massachusetts veterans.Filed...


New Junior ROTC program exposes Mahar students to military service in Orange
11-12-2023 5:00 PM

By DOMENIC POLI

ORANGE — Retired Lt. Col. Glenn Scott noticed a few snafus in one of Ralph C. Mahar Regional School’s Army Junior Reserve Officers’ Training Corps demonstrations on Thursday. But that’s not uncommon for a program barely 2½ months old.“I think it went...


Winchendon Veterans Day ceremony calls for healing of those who served
11-12-2023 5:00 PM

By GREG VINE

WINCHENDON – More than 100 people filled the chapel at Veterans Memorial Cemetery on Saturday to honor the men and women who have served in the Armed Forces over the course of the nation’s history.The crowd was welcomed by the cemetery’s...


Franklin County school ceremonies thank veterans for their service
11-10-2023 5:00 PM

By CHRIS LARABEE and JULIAN MENDOZA

In anticipation of Veterans Day on Saturday, Erving Elementary School took the time to thank locals for their military service early.Reprising tradition, Erving Elementary School staff and students celebrated the military service of around two dozen...


‘A time for renewal’: At groundbreaking, veterans look to future with new $483M home
08-15-2023 5:00 PM

By SCOTT MERZBACH

HOLYOKE — An Air Force veteran who served the United States from 1950 to 1954, Dennis Thresher was at the Soldiers’ Home in Holyoke when he contracted COVID in 2020, was hospitalized with the illness four times and died from pneumonia in January...


Late Erving vet to be honored at Vietnam Veterans Memorial 
05-29-2023 9:14 AM

By DOMENIC POLI

WASHINGTON, D.C. — Since the end of the Vietnam War, about 300,000 American military veterans have died from exposure to Agent Orange. One of those fallen patriots was lifelong Erving resident Bruce L. Bezio, who died of lung cancer in September 2021,...


With $25K grant, LifePath helps veterans age in place
05-26-2023 4:54 PM

By DOMENIC POLI

GREENFIELD — The homes of at least 10 local veterans will be repaired or modified by the end of 2023, thanks to a $25,000 grant from Meals on Wheels America with support from The Home Depot Foundation.LifePath, a nonprofit that provides programs and...

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