VA Western New York Healthcare System
HEROIC FOUR CHAPLAINS HONORED
February 18, 2019
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Contact: Evangeline Conley, Public Affairs Officer
Phone: (716) 862-8753 Cell: (716) 512-9338
VA Western New York Healthcare System will hold an interfaith memorial service for Veterans, employees, and the community on Wednesday, February 20 at 2 p.m. in Freedom Hall (Room 301), 3495 Bailey Avenue, Buffalo, New York. The service honors four U.S. Army chaplains who lost their lives in an extraordinary act of heroism during World War II.
At this event, Legion of Honor awards will be presented to Michael Hoplight of Niagara Falls, Carl Eugene Moore of Buffalo and Greg Scott along with his Therapy Dog Riley of East Amherst. The Legion of Honor award recognizes and honors outstanding members of society whose lives model the giving spirit of unconditional service to community, nation, and humanity without regard to race, religion, or creed which is exemplified dramatically by the Four Chaplains.
The four chaplains, a Methodist Minister, Jewish Rabbi, Dutch Reformed Church Minister, and Catholic Priest were on a U.S. Army transport ship that was hit by a German torpedo off the icy waters of Greenland in February 1943. When it became apparent there were not enough life jackets for all on board, the four US Army Chaplains removed theirs and handed them to frightened young soldiers, choosing to go down with the ship. They locked arms together and prayed in the tradition of their own faith. Of the 902 men on board, there were only 227 survivors. The chaplains demonstrated a strong interfaith compassion in their relationship with the men on board and with each other throughout this tragic voyage and in their last moments together.
For more information, please contact Chaplain Brian Stuttler at 716-862-8653. All are welcome to attend this special event.