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Media Advisories

 

Long Island State Veterans Home Celebrates D-Day Anniversary with 3 Normandy Invasion Heroes
Honoring the Achievements of the ‘Greatest Generation’, Ceremony to Commemorate Military Members of the Past and Present

MEDIA ADVISORY FOR FRIDAY, JUNE 6, 2014 at 2pm

Photo/Video Op: Veterans Home Celebrates the 70th Anniversary of D-Day

Media Contact: Stony Brook Media Relations, 631-444-7880/On-site: Melissa Weir (631) 487-4092

 

Long Island State Veterans Home Celebrates D-Day Anniversary with 3 Normandy Invasion Heroes

Honoring the Achievements of the ‘Greatest Generation’, Ceremony to Commemorate Military Members of the Past and Present

WHAT:

89-year-old Julian Oleaga, 95-year-old Ben Gebbia, and 101-year-old Michael Settanni have more in common than just being are residents of the Long Island State Veterans Home at Stony Brook University. All three are World War II Veterans who served in the United States Army, and all three were part of the D-Day Invasion on June 6, 1944, which led to the liberation of Nazi-occupied Europe. 

On Friday, June 6, 2014, The Long Island State Veterans Home will host a ceremony to commemorate these three men and their heroic service 70 years ago. They will also honor all brave men and women who served during World War II, and all Military personnel around the world who are protecting our freedoms.  

VISUALS: D-Day Heroes video montage, Color guard presentation, ceremonial candle lighting tribute, musical salute to the Armed Forces by Mark Eisman and more.   

WHO:

  • Ben Gebbia, 3rd Armored Tank Division, Technician, 5th grade; boarded a ship in New York in February of 1943 which headed to England, prepared for action in June of 1944, was part of the second wave during the Normandy invasion, served as a medic on the front lines, remembers liberating two concentration camps during WWII. 
  • Michael Settanni, 1st Lieutenant, Infantry of the 101st Airborne Division, part of the sea assault of Normandy, served in the European Theatre, landed on Omaha Beach with a tank detail, recipient of the Purple Heart.
  • Julian Oleaga, Private, 1st Class, First Infantry Division, 18th Regiment; was part of the second wave during the Normandy invasion, recipient of the Purple Heart.
  • Fred S. Sganga, Executive Director, Long Island State Veterans Home
  • Samuel L. Stanley, Jr., MD, President, Stony Brook University
  • Col. Eric J. Hesse, US Army (Ret), Director, NYS Division of Veterans Affairs
  • Tom Ronayne, Director, Suffolk County Veterans Affairs
  • Steven Fuchs, Ph.D., Associate Professor, History Department, St. Joseph’s College, Keynote speaker

WHY:

During World War II (1939-1945), the Battle of Normandy, which lasted from June 1944 to August 1944, resulted in the Allied liberation of Western Europe from Nazi Germany’s control. Codenamed Operation Overlord, the battle began on June 6, 1944, also known as D-Day, when some 156,000 American, British and Canadian forces landed on five beaches along a 50-mile stretch of the heavily fortified coast of France’s Normandy region. The invasion was one of the largest amphibious military assaults in history and required extensive planning. Prior to D-Day, the Allies conducted a large-scale deception campaign designed to mislead the Germans about the intended invasion target. By late August 1944, all of northern France had been liberated, and by the following spring the Allies had defeated the Germans. The Normandy landings have been called the beginning of the end of war in Europe.

WHEN: Friday, June 6, 2014 at 2pm

WHERE: Long Island State Veterans Home at Stony Brook University, 100 Patriots Road, Stony Brook, NY

DIRECTIONS: LIE to Exit 62. Head North on Nicolls Road. Cross Nesconset Highway (Route 347). Follow Hospital signs; turn right onto Health Sciences Drive. At the first light make a right onto Patriots Road.