9/11 service to honor Berkshire victims of war on terror

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PITTSFIELD — Five Berkshire residents killed defending America in the war against terrorism will be honored on Friday, the 19th anniversary of 9/11.

Mayor Linda Tyer and local veterans will lead the dedication of the Iran/Afghanistan War Memorial at Veterans Memorial Park on South Street. The ceremony begins at 10 a.m.

Attendees are required to wear masks, socially distance, or use one of the chairs spaced 6 feet apart.

The memorial pays tribute to Sgt. 1st Class Daniel Petithory, of Cheshire, the Berkshires' first military casualty after 9/11. He was killed Dec. 5, 2001, in Afghanistan.

The other four Army servicemen from the Berkshires killed either in Iraq or Afghanistan since Sept. 11, 2001, are Glenn Allison, of Pittsfield, Stephen Wells, of North Egremont, Michael DeMarsico, of North Adams, and Mitchell Daehling, of Dalton.

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The Iraq/Afghanistan War Memorial is sited atop the park embankment facing toward South Street. The standalone monument will be an extension of the original peace memorial dedicated July 8, 1926, on behalf of the city residents who died in World War I.

On May 31, 2010, the memorial was rededicated after extensive restoration of the five statues.

Behind the memorial is a wall displaying four plaques honoring veterans of World War II, the Korean War, the Vietnam War, as well as World War I.

Local veterans who spearheaded the Iran/Afghanistan memorial say they have surpassed their fundraising goal by nearly $5,000, receiving $49,239.90. However, VFW Pittsfield Post 448 Commander Arnold Perras says the goal has been raised from $45,000 to $52,800 due to unexpected added costs. The addition contributions will also help start a maintenance account for the new memorial.

Dick Lindsay can be reached at rlindsay@berkshireeagle.com


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