Tag Archive: Chris Szarek

EdCC Veterans Day Event Honors Korean War Vets

Korean Ambassador for Peace Medal

Korean Ambassador for Peace Medal

Six members of Post 8870 were among 23 Korean War veterans honored by Edmonds Community College at their annual Veterans Day celebration November 2. The event filled the college’s Black Box Theater to standing room only.

The highlight of the event was the awarding of the Korean Ambassador for Peace medal to the Korean Veterans present. The medals were presented by the Korean consul general in Seattle, Moon Duk-ho. The proclamation accompanying it reads: “The Republic of Korea thanks these veterans for the service [they] performed in restoring and preserving our freedom and democracy.”

EdCC Veterans Day Event Honors Korean War VetsPost 8870 member Jim Adams, Tom Hallums, Gil Loomis, Paul Poppe, Phil Sacks and Dan White were so honored.

The director of the college’s Veterans Resource Center, Navy retiree Chris Szarek, said, “Our campus chose to honor Korean War veterans as a way of ensuring that the brave men and women who served there know that their service is appreciated and to remind us of an often forgotten conflict.”

Other speakers at the event included state representative Cindy Ryu, who as Shoreline mayor was the first Korean American woman to be mayor of a U.S. city. Lynnwood Mayor Nicola Smith and Edmonds CC President Dr. Jean Hernandez also spoke. Our immediate past commander, Jim Blossey—also a Korean War veteran—was emcee for the program.

Korean War Vets gathered for a group photo following the ceremony. Legion and VFW members were joined by unaffiliated veterans

Korean War Vets gathered for a group photo following the ceremony. Legion and VFW members were joined by unaffiliated veterans

October Meeting Speaker

Sr Vice Commander Carl Kurfess has arranged for Zabine Van Ness and Chris Szarek of the Northwest Veteran’s Museum committee to speak to the post about the planned Veterans Museum at Heritage park in Lynnwood, located at 19921 Poplar Way.

The Mission of Heritage Park is to interpret the heritage of Lynnwood and the neighborhoods which once formed the community of Alderwood Manor. Heritage exhibits throughout the park tell stories of life in early Alderwood Manor, and its historic structures have been renovated and repurposed as community resource facilities. At present, these include the South Snohomish County Visitor Information Center and Wickers Museum in the Wickers Building; the Heritage Resource Center in the Superintendent’s Cottage; the Sno-Isle Genealogy Library in the Humble House; and Interurban Car No. 55. Heritage Park is owned and operated by the City of Lynnwood, in partnership with the Snohomish County Tourism Bureau, Alderwood Manor Heritage Association, and the Sno-Isle Genealogical Society.

July Post Meeting Speaker

July Post Meeting SpeakerChris Szarek, Director of Veterans Affairs at Edmonds Community College, gave the post an update on the status of veterans programs at the College. At left, he is shown presenting Jim Blossey with a certificate recognizing the participation of the Post in the College’s Memorial Day event and Blossey for his outstanding performance as the Master of Ceremonies for the event.

A more detailed report and photos of the event were published in the June issue of this newsletter.

Edmonds Community College Memorial Day Observance

Fallen Heroes, World War II Veterans Honored

Edmonds Community College Memorial Day Observance Fallen Heroes, World War II Veterans Honored

On May 25, Edmonds Community College hosted its Memorial Day Ceremony, at the Black Box Theater on the College campus. The event was planned by a distinguished committee headed by Chris Szarek, USN Retired, Veterans Resource Center Director at the college.

Our own Post Commander Jim Blossey acted as Master of Ceremonies for the event, which featured “A Time to Remember” slide show featuring images and stories of fallen members of the families of College students, faculty and staff. Music was provided by the EdCC voice class, under the leadership of Linda Kappus and by Kyle Gaul (son of Post 8870 member Charlie Gaul on bagpipe.

Gold Star Mother Monica McNeal was on hand to introduce the keynote speaker, RaeLynn Ricarte, author of “Living the Oath: Warriors Take It, Families Endure it”. The book explores the wartime experiences and the post war aftermath of veterans of Iraq and Afghanistan and their families. Her topic explored the origins of the book through her experience as the mother of a combat Marine, centered around the idea “Be an American Worth Dying for”.

Following the ceremonies at the Black Box, all present processed to the campus “Boots to Books” monument, where colors were presented, followed by presentation of the “Soldier’s Cross” and the laying of a wreath. The ceremonies concluded with the playing of “Amazing Grace” by Kyle Gaul on bagpipe and “Taps” by Post 1040 bugler Glenn Ledbetter.