St. John’s hosts annual Veterans Day ceremony

St. John’s hosts annual Veterans Day ceremony
Courtesy of St. John’s
By Naeisha Rose

St. John’s University was scheduled to hold its annual Veterans Day ceremony in Jamaica Thursday for vets dating as far back as the Korean War to honor those who have risked their lives to protect our country, as well as educate its students on the importance of the day.

The ceremony was planned for Nov. 8 at the school’s D’Angelo Center at 8000 Utopia Parkway in room 416, according to Paul Lazauskas, a spokesman for the school.

Elected officials, community leaders, approximately 500 student veterans and members of the school’s ROTC are expected to attend the event, which was slated to begin at 1:30 p.m., according to Lazauskas.

Opening up the ceremony is the school’s ROTC battalion, which will present the color guards, according to Lazauskas. Theresa Sareo, a pop singer, will also perform.

“She does a lot of military tributes,” Lazauskas said. “She is an amputee herself after getting hit by a car and she has dedicated her life to reaching out to veterans and connecting with them and their backgrounds.”

The master of ceremonies for the event is Joseph Sciame, the vice president for Community Relations, and the speaker is Capt. Carlo Wei of the SJU Red Storm ROTC Battalion, according to Lazauskas. A luncheon will follow his speech.

Wei enlisted into the U.S. Army Reserves as a Private first class in 2003 as an Intelligence Analyst while he attended the University of California in Santa Cruz full time. He spent nine years as an enlisted soldier reaching the rank of Sergeant First Class before directly commissioning as a Military Intelligence officer, according to Lazauskas.

He later earned a Master’s degree in public administration at Golden Gate University in California and served overseas assignments to South Korea and Iraq.

Wej put his civilian career on hold at the city of Half Moon Bay in California for three years to take an assignment as an executive officer and ROTC instructor at the Red Storm Battalion. He has 15 years total of service with three spent at St. John’s ROTC to help mentor the next generation of Army officers.

Reach reporter Naeisha Rose by e-mail at nrose@cnglocal.com or by phone at (718) 260–4573.