November 13, 2012
St. John’s University paid special tribute to all United States
Veterans with ceremonies in observance of Veterans Day last
Thursday on its Queens campus and Friday on its Staten Island
campus. The commemorations, sponsored by the Office of Community
Relations, honored all veterans, living and deceased, who have
sacrificed to protect the freedom of this country.
The invocation was led by Fr. James Maher, C.M., Executive Vice
President for Mission and Student Services, followed by the singing
of the “Star Spangled Banner” and the recital of “Pledge of
Allegiance” in Queens before a crowd of over 200, and Stephen
DiBlasio gave the opening prayer in Staten Island to an
enthusiastic crowd of close to 100. Joseph Sciame, Vice
President for Community Relations served as Master of Ceremonies
for both events.
“Veteran’s day is a day to honor and remember those men and
women who serve in the military and defend our country. Last year,
of the 50,000 people who applied to St. John’s University, 5,000 of
those applicants have served in the military,” said Sciame. “Many
vets are coming back to St. John’s who want to pursue their
studies, and having served in the military they can benefit through
financial resources from the government. Our student life area is
ready to welcome them with the formation of the Veteran’s
The newly formed Veterans Organization helps Veterans who are
transitioning into education. SGT Jerry Ojeda, a veteran who is
currently an undergraduate student at St. John’s, was appointed as
president of the organization.
“At the Veteran’s Organization we help not only our veterans,
but also those who are looking to pursue their education after
serving our country,” said Ojeda. “Some of the challenges that
veteran students face differ from those of other undergraduate
students who have just graduated high school. This organization
allows those students to come and share their practices. We hope
that this is an organization we can continue, not only now but in
the future and for years to come.”
Dime Savings Bank made a contribution to the St. John’s
Veteran’s Organization and was co-sponsor of the joint events.
The University’s Staten Island and Queens campuses had great
participation from St. John’s alumni, and veterans both young
and old from several wars throughout the years including Daniel
O’Neill, a veteran who served in Korea from 1958-60. O’Neill
received the American Flag from a member of the St. John’s ROTC
“Receiving this flag really means a great deal to me,” said
O’Neill.“I have been coming here for many years and this flag will
hold a special place of honor in my home.”
The events have been organized for more than 13 years at St.
John’s, all in an effort at bringing awareness of Veteran’s Day to
St. John’s students. Veterans and their families from the local
community of the American Veterans Foundation, the American Legion,
the Jewish War Veterans of NY and the Catholic War Veterans all
shared stories and remembered their fallen friends and war heroes
in a time-honored tradition hosted by the University.
For more information contact The Office of Media Relations by
calling (718) 990-2451 or e-mail inquiries to firstname.lastname@example.org.