Goshen – Orange County Executive Steven Neuhaus has named Greenville resident Rosemary Marcolina as November’s Citizen of the Month Award winner.
Marcolina, a fifth-grade teacher at Minisink Valley Intermediate School, was honored for her support of veterans and commitment to teaching her students about the men and women who serve this country as well as her dedication to her profession. She has taught fifth grade at Minisink Valley for 34 consecutive years.
“Respecting our military is something that Ms. Marcolina cares deeply about and I feel is very important,” Neuhaus said. “Not only has she taught her students about veterans, but Rosemary has provided them with unique opportunities to meet these men and women and hear their stories. It is an invaluable education tool for her students, and I know that they have benefited from these experiences. Ms. Marcolina is an asset to Minisink Valley, and it’s a privilege to honor her.”
Neuhaus recognized Marcolina as Citizen of the Month in front of her classroom on Wednesday, November 6. Marcolina had previously invited Neuhaus and Deputy Commissioner of Emergency Services Alan Mack to be guests in her class. Mack served in the U.S. Army for 35 years as a helicopter pilot. He served several tours in Iraq and Afghanistan, working with Special Forces and other elite units, including Delta Force and the U.S. Navy’s renowned Seal Team Six.
Neuhaus returned to the U.S. from a deployment in June after being on active duty orders since November with the United States Navy. He served with the Combined Joint Special Operations Task Force, spending most of his deployment in various locations throughout Iraq in Support of Operation Inherent Resolve, the U.S. Military Campaign against ISIS. Neuhaus currently serves in the U.S. Navy Reserves as a Lieutenant Commander, assigned to a Naval Special Operations Team.
Marcolina’s respect for the military began in high school when she watched several friends and family members serve in the Vietnam War. Her appreciation for the sacrifices that servicemen and servicewoman and their families make continued when she taught in Highland Falls, located near West Point. Soon after starting her career at Minisink Valley, Marcolina and another teacher, Betsy Corletta, whose father served in the military, began inviting veterans to their classes around Veterans Day.
Through the years, Marcolina’s classes have sent packages and letters to active military overseas and to veterans’ hospitals and food pantries. Since 1994, Marcolina’s class has invited local veterans and their family members, and school administrators and staff to a Memorial Day classroom event, which concludes with a brunch. Students and their families also collect food, clothing, and toiletries for local veterans and for Castle Point Veterans Hospital.
“That is always my favorite day of the school year,” Marcolina said. “I just stand back and watch the students interact with our local heroes. I’ve known some of our local American Legion and VFW members my entire life, and our connections are deeper than I can explain. Our veterans deserve our respect, consideration, and gratitude. I’m honored that County Executive Neuhaus has recognized me, which has brought more attention to our local veterans. His enthusiasm for meeting our students and sharing his stories of brave service is much appreciated.”
Neuhaus introduced his Citizen of the Month Award, which acknowledges outstanding Orange County residents, in January of 2017. To nominate someone for the Citizen of the Month Award, please email email@example.com or mail a letter to “Citizen of the Month” at 255-275 Main Street Goshen, N.Y. 10924. Be sure to include the nominee’s name, hometown, a list of their accomplishments, why you are nominating them and any other pertinent information.