BY ASSEMBLYMEMBER PETER ABBATE
Every year, one of my favorite things to do is drive around my Assembly district and look at all the houses flying flags on Memorial Day. This year will be no different, as celebrations across the nation will be carried out in much the same way we did over a century ago, flags will be flown on houses to illustrate the pride we have in our country and to honor the sacrifice of our soldiers and their families. Memorial Day is so much more than a day off from work or the beginning of summer, it’s a day when the whole nation comes together to remember the brave men and women who paid the ultimate sacrifice fighting for our freedom.
Since the first Memorial Day celebration, our nation has been involved in many difficult wars and lost more heroes for whom we need to pause and show our gratitude. As we take this time to remember those who have lost their lives, we must also remain focused on the veterans who have come home. Their sacrifice and that of their families is something we must never forget as well. In my capacity as Chairman of the Assembly Governmental Employees Committee, I’m proud to support legislation that would allow service members to buy credit into the state or city pension systems for their service during peace time. The most recent budget also included funds to start the Veterans Entrepreneurial Assistance Program to provide veterans the training they need to start new businesses once they come home. These programs, as well as many others that are proposed in the Assembly, will hopefully have an impact those soldiers after their service.
If you would like to show your support for these heroes, and remind those in the armed forces and their families that they are not alone, there are several events in the area that you could attend. You could also simply fly the flag and take the time to thank a soldier this Memorial Day, and keep them in your thoughts. I remain dedicated to honoring and preserving the memory of those who have been killed in action and will do everything I can to ensure the best for our troops and their families, while at home and abroad.
Assemblymember Peter Abbate represents the 49th A.D. which includes portions of Bensonhurst, Bath Beach, Dyker Heights, Boro Park and Sunset Park.