Today is Veterans Day. There’s no better time to hear Dylan Mace’s story.
The Staples High School junior is a varsity hockey player. He’s also an active member of Operation Care Package, a school club that assembles and sends books, magazines, food and more to American troops serving in places like Afghanistan.
Dylan got involved as a freshman. His grandfather served in Special Forces during the Korean War. Before he died, he passed along his pride in the military to Dylan.
This year, as he tried to find another way to help out, Dylan learned about Westport’s VFW Post 399. Speaking with commander Bernie Rombout, he learned the Riverside Avenue building lacked a handicap-accessible bathroom.
“That appalled me,” Dylan says. “These are brave men and women who serve. They could lose limbs. They should be able to use the bathroom at the VFW!”
Dylan learned the cost of design and renovation for such a bathroom: $10,000.
Immediately, he created a GoFundMe page to help.
Dylan will also be at the downtown Starbucks this weekend, soliciting donations.
In many ways, today is a normal Saturday in Westport. But it’s also an important national holiday.
Dylan Mace has provided a meaningful way for us to honor it. Just click here to help.
(Hat tip: Vicky Capozzi)
You’d think a plaque honoring all of Westport’s veterans — “living or dead” — would be located in a prominent spot. Veterans Green, probably. The VFW, perhaps.
You’d also think that because it was dedicated in 1975, plenty of people would remember where it was.
You’d be wrong.
Jack Whittle and Deej Webb were the only “06880” readers who knew where last week’s photo challenge can be found. (Click here for the image, and all comments.)
It’s not what our veterans deserve. The plaque is at the old Bertucci’s (and older: Clam Box) property, near where a memorial flagpole once stood.
There’s a reason it’s there, and it has nothing to do with clams or pizza. For several decades, a Doughboy statue once graced the median, between the restaurant and Torno Hardware.
It was relocated probably 20-25 years ago to Veterans Green (though it was not called that then). It’s certainly a more appropriate spot — across from Town Hall, next to the Westport Historical Society.
Also appropriately, I’m honored to pass along alert (and patriotic) “06880” reader Adam Vengrow’s reminder:
Veteran’s Day is Saturday, November 11. Westport’s Town Hall ceremony is always inspiring — but lightly attended. Consider going (10:30 a.m.). School’s not in session that day, so bring the kids too. It’s a great way — besides a plaque — to honor our veterans.
Now here’s this week’s photo challenge. If you think you know where in Westport it is, click “Comments” below.