The Village of Pinecrest hosted its annual Veterans Day Picnic on November 11 at Veterans Wayside Park on S. Dixie Highway. The weather was good and an estimated crowd of 300 veterans and others attended.
Bagpiper Eddie Hussey, in full Scottish garb, played several songs as the event began.
Pinecrest Mayor Joseph M. Corradino gave the opening remarks following the Honor Guard and Pledge of Allegiance. He welcomed everyone and introduced the other councilmembers present—Jim McDonald, Anna Hochkammer, Katie Abbott, Doug Kraft, Deputy Police Chief Cohen—as well as members of the Youth Advisory Council.
“We’ve been doing this in Pinecrest for quite awhile,” said Mayor Corradino. “It’s an honor to be with you to celebrate and remember. We all know we’re the greatest nation in the world. We’re that way because of people like you, those of you who have protected us and defended our Constitution.”
Former State Senator Richard Renick, himself a decorated veteran who served in the U.S. Navy, gave a brief speech and assisted in the ceremony as a wreath was placed beside the plaque displaying the name of the park. Renick had been instrumental in rallying support for keeping the park a place honoring veterans when it had been proposed that it be changed to a dog park.
There was a recognition of Girl Scouts Troop 1832 and Boy Scouts Pack 941, then Nancy Auster, RN, and Orenthal Adams of Vitas Healthcare presented American Flag pins to veterans attending the event, calling out the names of each and having them stand.
Members of the Boy Scouts and Girl Scouts placed the pins on the veterans.
Closing comments were given by Robert C. Mattes, CPRP, the Parks and Recreation Director.
A lunch of grilled hamburgers and hot dogs with side dishes was provided free of charge by the Shula Burger restaurant in Pinecrest. A cake was provided by Vitas Healthcare.