Avella honors Vietnam veterans with resolutions

Avella honors Vietnam veterans with resolutions
Photo courtesy Tony Avella
By Phil Corso

A northeast Queens lawmaker rolled out the red carpet at his Bayside district office in honor of five distinguished veterans.

To mark Veterans Day, state Sen. Tony Avella (D-Bayside) presented five unanimously passed Senate resolutions honoring Vietnam War vets Frederick Hensel, Michael Daughtry, Paul Narson and Shin Il Han as well as Young Soo Lee for their service.

Each year, the senator recognizes veterans from northeast Queens on both Memorial and Veterans days with resolutions to say thanks. This year he invited a group of the veterans’ families as well as VFW and VVA members to witness the ceremony.

Hensel, who was born in Flushing and attended Holy Cross and Flushing high schools, joined the U.S. Army in 1968 in South Carolina. There he was trained as a radio and mobile radio teletype operator.

Initially stationed in Germany, Hensel also served on active duty in Vietnam, where he was in the first Signal Brigade in the Mekong Delta. He was awarded the National Defense, Vietnam Service, Vietnam Campaign and Good Conduct medals.

Daughtry, a life member of the Vietnam Veterans of America, joined the Army in 1967 and was deployed to Vietnam that same year. He was seriously wounded in action soon after his deployment and spent more than a year recovering at St. Albans Hospital.

He was awarded the Purple Heart, Bronze Star Medal, Army Commendation Medal, Combat Infantry Badge, Parachute Badge, Good Conduct Medal, Vietnam Service Medal, Vietnam Cross of Gallantry, Vietnam Presidential Unit Citation and National Defense Medal.

Narson was born and raised in the Bronx and now serves as president of the VVA’s 32nd chapter in Queens. He joined the Army in 1959 and also served in the National Guard’s Rainbow Division from 1965-67. During his service, he was awarded the Good Conduct Medal, National Defense Medal, U.S. Army Expeditionary Forces Medal, Expert Infantry Badge and New York State Medal of Merit.

Han was born in South Korea in 1946 and served in the Korea Marine Corps from 1963-66. He was deployed to Vietnam in 1965 as part of the Republic of Korea Marine Corps and served there for a year. He emigrated to the United States in 1977 and served in the Korean Marine Corps Veterans Association of Eastern U.S.

Soo Lee was born in 1943 and also served in the Republic of Korea Marine Corps from 1963-69. He came to America in 1977 and served as the ninth president of the Korean Marine Corps Veterans Association of Eastern U.S. in 1995 and currently serves as an advisory board member.

Reach reporter Phil Corso by e-mail at pcorso@cnglocal.com or by phone at 718-260-4573.