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Long Beach honors vets with heartfelt ceremony

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Long Beach honored its veterans Wednesday with a ceremony shortened by the Covid-19 pandemic but nonetheless made large with heartfelt feelings for those who served the country in all of its wars.

The ceremony was held by the Long Beach Joint Veterans Organization in front of the Long Beach VFW Post 1384.

Fewer than 50 people attended because of the Covid restrictions but the ceremony was live-streamed so people could watch at home.

Long Beach VFW Post 1384 Commander Dan McPhee led the ceremony and acknowledged all the sacrifices veterans have made during and after their service. He announced that the VFW Post will be remanded after Daniel Steele, a U.S. Army veteran who served in World War II. Steele died a few months ago at the height of the pandemic.

“He was a great man,” McPhee said. “He was great for the VFW. He loved the VFW.”

Among several speakers at the event, Nassau County Legislator Denise Ford, who has a family filled with veterans,  touched upon the times when she would reminisce about the war. She praised their strength and bravery.

Ford, however, also mentioned that veterans need love, support and care.

“We must always remember their sacrifices and courage in the face of danger,” Ford said. “They have secured our freedoms and for this, we are indebted to them.

City Council President John Bendo, who served six years in the U.S. Navy, also praised the people in uniform who protect American rights.

“This day is to thank everyone here, who’s put on the uniform,” Bendo said.