Bundled up for winter, veterans recall the sacrifices made during
wars that have kept America free
PUTNAM COUNTY – Arctic cold along with golden sunshine and glorious
blue skies greeted scores of veterans Saturday when Putnam County observed
At the Lake Carmel monument with the temperature at a bone chilling 22
degrees and winds blowing off the lake, Director of Veterans Affairs Karl
Rohde thanked the hearty two dozen attendees for “remembering our
In Mahopac, some 150 were on hand for a parade and ceremony while events
in Brewster, Putnam Valley, Cold Spring, Patterson and Putnam Lake also
paid tribute to America’s veterans.
Rohde recalled the history of Veterans Day. “On November 11, 1918,
after four years of war, allied and German powers met in France to sign
an armistice that halted the hostilities of World War I. The agreement
was signed at 5 a.m. and went into effect at the 11th hour of the 11th
day of the 11th month of 1918 finally bringing to an end the carnage of
the Great War — the war thought by many to be the war that would
end all wars.”
In 1954, President Dwight Eisenhower renamed the day Veterans Day to honor
the service of veterans from all wars.
County Executive MaryEllen Odell told observances in Kent and Brewster:
“Veterans, you have our deepest gratitude.”
A special ceremony was held in Purdys to honor a former Putnam County
World War II hero who died in the line of duty.
Marine Corps Sgt. Philip Doyle was killed in Okinawa on May 20, 1945.
Doyle was awarded the Silver Star as well as a Presidential Unit Citation
for his “extraordinary heroism against enemy Japanese forces during
the assault and capture of Okinawa.”
Dr. Dan Doyle of Carmel told the ceremony Saturday outside the Purdys
School, “Units of his division withstood overwhelming artillery
and mortar barrages, repulsed furious counterattacks and staunchly pushed
over the rocky terrain to reduce impregnable defenses and capture Sugar
After a mortar round ended Phil Doyle’s life, he was buried in the
Sixth Marine Cemetery in Okinawa. When the cemetery was moved years later,
Sgt. Doyle’s remains were sent back to the U.S. and buried at St.
Joseph’s Cemetery in Somers.
A flagpole that had been placed in front of the former St. Joseph’s
School on Croton Falls Road at the Carmel town line was moved when the
school closed and on Saturday it was rededicated at its new location –
in front of the Purdys School off Route 22 – in memory of the Putnam
Relative James Doyle told the gathering, “By remembering him, we
remember all who have given their lives in service to these United States
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