The updated Herkimer County Veterans’ Wall of Honor will be unveiled during an afternoon ceremony on Friday. The ceremony will begin at 3:30 p.m. in the lower level of the Robert McLaughlin College Center on the Herkimer County Community College campus.
The wall recognizes Herkimer County men and women, in all branches of the military, who have served in wars and major armed conflicts from World War I to the present.
The wall, which can be found near the entrance to the tunnel between the Robert McLaughlin College Center and the CA Building, was recently updated to include campaign ribbons for the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan. The lettering was provided by Al Dorantes, of Herkimer, and the campaign ribbons were painted by Rachel Curtis, of Mohawk, a member of the college’s Class of 2012.
Craig Dewan, a registrar who assists veterans when they enroll in classes at HCCC, said the college had been planning on updating the Veterans’ Wall of Honor for some time.
“It is an honor and a privilege for HCCC to be able to recognize the service of Herkimer County veterans,” he said, adding the effort was coordinated by Dan Sargent, assistant to the president.
Sargent said college President Ann Marie Murray decided this past summer the mural needed to be updated to include representation of the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan.
“We recruited one of our graduating fine arts program students, Rachel Curtis, of Mohawk, to paint the campaign ribbons and Al Dorantes, of Sign Designs By Al & Company, to do the lettering beneath the ribbons. The examples of the campaign ribbons Ms. Curtis worked from were provided by Charlie Miller, director of the Herkimer County Veterans Services Agency, who will be one of the featured speakers at the unveiling ceremony,” he said, adding the work was completed over the summer.
A color guard for the Dec. 7 ceremony will be provided by the Herkimer County Veterans Council.
In addition to Miller, the program will also include remarks by state Senator James Seward, state Assemblyman Marc Butler and HCCC student and U.S. Army veteran Adam Lisser, of Rome.
“Mr. Lisser represents a new generation of veterans that are coming home from the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan and are making the adjustment back into civilian life,” said Sargent.