Names of five police officers, two K-9s added to memorial of fallen officers in Wareham

The community gathered around the Wareham Police Memorial on Thursday evening for the addition of 7 names being added to the memorial. The addition was for 5 former police officers, Kenneth Baptiste, Gordon Lopes, Theodore Weygandt, Dennis Damata and Ralph Forni. Also added were two former canine members, K-9 Cago and K-9 Rolf.

Police Chief Walter Correia read the names of all 53 individuals that are now being honored on the memorial. We livestreamed the entire presentation which you can watch below.

New Bedford’s Fort Taber Flag To Honor WWII Veteran SGT Harold H. J. Clasky

During the month of November, the 50th Lights for Peace flag to fly at the Fort Taber – Fort Rodman Military Museum honors the memory of SGT Harold H. J. Clasky, the namesake of Clasky Common Park in New Bedford, MA.

Mr. Clasky was born in Russia on March 2, 1896, and according to the library archives at UMASS Dartmouth, lived his early life in Brockton, MA, attending the Brockton public schools.

According to the War Records Dept., Clasky registered with the selective service on June 5, 1917, at the age of 21. On August 26, 1918, he was inducted into the Army of the United States and served in the 18th Regiment Field Artillery Replacement Depot at Camp Jackson, SC. He was honorably discharged at Camp Devens, Mass. Jan. 10, 1919.

Clasky continued his education, earning a degree from the Boston University School of Business. He moved to New Bedford in 1931.

Then, on Mar. 10, 1941, Clasky enlisted in Co. H 25th Infantry Regiment Massachusetts State Guard for a term of three years. He was honorably discharged Mar. 9, 1944, per expiration of service. The following day he re-enlisted into 8th Co. 28th Infantry Regiment MSG. He was honorably discharged Jan. 31, 1947, per disbandment of the company. He was awarded the WWII Victory Medal for his military service.
In 1952, his wife, Ida Fox, passed away in 1952 at the age of 45. Harold Clasky passed away on January 28, 1969, at the age of 72.

Clasky was known as a popular political figure in New Bedford and beyond. According to the UMASS Dartmouth Library archives, “He was a Jewish state senator noted for work he accomplished in the community. He served as a New Bedford Councilor-At-Large from 1952-1953 and 1956-1965 and as a Massachusetts State Senator representing the 3rd Bristol District from 1965 to 1969. Originally a life insurance agent by trade, he was involved in a number of local organizations including the American Legion, the Jewish War Veterans, and the Jonah Lodge of the B’nai Brith.”

He was remembered as “A most approachable and magnanimous man who served as a model of inspiration to everyone, no matter his or her faith, background or creed. He always had courage and will for a devoted and longtime career for public service. He brought no arrogance of power to office, only dedication, devotion, and a loyalty to the people he represented–a rare example of a man of the highest integrity and principle. Succinctly, he was an outstanding man of our times, a man of singular achievement, a righteous American, a superb politician and above all, a decent human being of quintessential goodwill and civility,” as quoted by Mel B. Yoken, Ph.D., Chancellor Professor of French, University of Massachusetts Dartmouth.

The popular park on County Street in New Bedford, known today as “Clasky Common Park,” was renamed and dedicated to Mr. Harold H. J. Clasky on October 13, 1969.

New Bedford celebrates “Functional Zero” veteran homelessness for third straight year

On Monday morning we were invited to tour the Veterans Transition House facilities in New Bedford. Before the tour began, we listened in on a meeting with elected officials and other leaders in the veteran community. It’s apparent that assisting homeless veterans has been a top priority in New Bedford as today marked a third consecutive year achieving “functional zero” veteran homelessness in the city.

We spoke with Jason Stripnis, Business Manager & Chief Financial Officer of the Veterans Transition House to gain more knowledge on the hard work happening behind the scenes.

The Veterans Transition House currently has 83 veterans in housing. Mayor Mitchell toured the facility and spoke with veteran leadership.

If you’re interested in listening to the meeting for yourself, we recorded it in its entirety.

If you are a veteran in need or you know a veteran who is struggling, please reach out to the Veterans Transition House. They are an amazing organization that is making a huge difference in the lives of veterans in New Bedford.

Fort Taber Flag To Honor New Bedford’s Corporal Tiago Reis, Vietnam Veteran Killed In Action

During the month of September, the 48th Lights for Peace flag to fly at the Fort Taber – Fort Rodman Military Museum honors the memory of Tiago Reis of New Beford who was killed in action while serving with the Marine Corps during the Vietnam War.

Reis was born on February 15, 1947 in St. Michael, the Azores, the son of the late Mr. and Mrs. Luis Reis. He lived on Rivet Street in New Bedford, MA. Reis enlisted in the United States Marine Corps on December 15, 1965, at the age of 18, and began his active duty career on February 8, 1966.

Corporal Reis was killed in action on September 21, 1967, at the age of 20, while serving in the Vietnam War. According to a letter written by Second Lieutenant, U.S. Marine Corps, Assistant to Head, Casualty Section from the Department of the Navy, CPL Reis died “in the vicinity of Quang Tri, Republic of Vietnam as the result of fragmentation wounds sustained from a hostile mortar while participating in an operation against hostile forces.”

“The Vietnam War was a long, costly and divisive conflict that pitted the communist government of North Vietnam against South Vietnam and its principal ally, the United States,” according to history.com. “The conflict was intensified by the ongoing Cold War between the United States and the Soviet Union. More than 3 million people (including over 58,000 Americans) were killed in the Vietnam War, and more than half of the dead were Vietnamese civilians.”

According to the website marines.mil, “As 1967 began, the 3d Marine Div. was fighting two wars: a conventional one along with DMZ, where division confronted division, and a counter guerrilla war in the rest of Quan Tri and Thua Thien province. Although committed to both campaigns, the situation forced the division to give priority to the DMZ (Demilitarized Zone).”

Quang Tri province, where corporal Reis was killed, was part of the DMZ. According to Wikipedia, “The Vietnamese Demilitarized Zone was a demilitarized zone at the 17th parallel in Quang Tri province that was established as the dividing line between the two countries i.e. North Vietnam and South Vietnam from 22 July 1954 to 2 July 1976 when Vietnam was officially divided into the two military gathering areas, which was intended to be sustained in the short term after the First Indochina War.

Corporal Tiago Reis served honorably in the United States Marine Corps and paid the ultimate sacrifice for his country.

Linda Ferreira, of Empire Ford of New Bedford, researches the life histories of area residents. American flags are provided by Empire Ford of New Bedford. Flags are raised by the staff at Fort Taber – Fort Rodman Military Museum. Those who would like to honor a local veteran in the future can contact Ferreira at lferreira@buyempireautogroup.com.

New Bedford’s Fort Taber August Flag Honors Arthur R. Allain Korean War Veteran

During the month of August, the 47th Lights for Peace flag to fly at the Fort Taber – Fort Rodman Military Museum honors the memory of Arthur R. Allain, or New Bedford, who passed away on April 19th at the age of 92.

Allain was born in New Bedford on March 7, 1931, the son of the late Thadde and Rosalie (LeBlanc) Allain. He was inducted into the United States Army on May 16, 1952 in Boston and served during the Korean War, spending one year, 3 months and 15 days overseas. He attained the rank of Corporal and was honorably discharged on May 4, 1954, spending nearly two years serving his country. Allain was awarded the Korean Service Medal with 2 bronze stars, the National Defense Service Medal and the United Nations Service Medal.

“The armed conflict in Korea, which began in 1950, lasted three years and claimed the lives of millions of Korean soldiers and civilians on both sides, hundreds of thousands of Chinese soldiers, and more than 36,000 U.S. soldiers,” according to Brittanica.com. “However, the United States never formally declared war on North Korea, China, or the Soviet Union. And, although the U.S. military led the United Nations’ expeditionary force, its involvement was tied only to a UN Security Council resolution, because the UN itself cannot declare war. Consequently, the conflict in Korea did not technically constitute a war,” although the conflict is often referred to as the Korean War.

The Korean War was a conflict between the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea (North Korea) and the Republic of Korea (South Korea) in which at least 2.5 million people lost their lives. “The war reached international proportions in June 1950 when North Korea, supplied and advised by the Soviet Union, invaded the South. The United Nations, with the United States as the principal participant, joined the war on the side of the South Koreans, and the People’s Republic of China came to North Korea’s aid. After more than a million combat casualties had been suffered on both sides, the fighting ended in July 1953 with Korea still divided into two hostile states. Negotiations in 1954 produced no further agreement, and the front line has been accepted ever since as the de facto boundary between North and South Korea.”

rthur is pictured here with his mother, Rosalie (LeBlanc) Allain​

Upon completing his military service, Allain went to work for Sunbeam Bakery as a baker and then moved into the shipping and receiving department. Upon leaving Sunbeam Bakery, he went to work for Tweeve Manufacturing, where he would later retire from. Allain was a hard worker and at times worked 2-3 jobs, working part-time at Central Pharmacy and Central Liquors.

Bob Silveira, Allain’s nephew and godson, explains, “While serving in Korea, (Arthur) found out that my mother was pregnant with me. When he got to Japan on leave, he somehow got word to her that he wanted to be the godfather. So, she waited for him to return.”

Silveira went on to explain that his uncle was “a very quiet guy who was extremely proud of his country and his military service in Korea. He was instrumental in getting a monument to honor his friend PFC Rene G. Poitras, who was killed in action (KIA) in the Korean War.

Arthur marched in every Memorial Day parade he could and then drove in a vehicle when he was not able to walk in the parade. He also enjoyed word search puzzles and watching New England sports, especially the Red Sox. In his earlier years, he enjoyed fishing on the Cape Cod Canal.

He is survived by his nephews, Robert Silveira and his wife Barbara of Plymouth, William Silveira and his wife Debra of Lakeville, Bernard Allain and his wife Maureen of Dartmouth, Ronald Allain of Troy, NH, Bruce Allain of Warwick, RI and the late Rene Allain, Jr. of New Bedford; his nieces, Diane Gamache and her husband Paul of Freetown, Doreen Wotton and her husband Russell of Dartmouth; He was the brother of the late David, Francois, Cecile (Silveira), Zoel, Omer, Rene Sr. and Paul Allain.

Linda Ferreira, of Empire Ford of New Bedford, researches the life histories of area residents. American flags are provided by Empire Ford of New Bedford. Flags are raised by the staff at Fort Taber – Fort Rodman Military Museum. Those who would like to honor a local veteran in the future can contact Ferreira at lferreira@buyempireautogroup.com.

New Bedford WW2 Veteran ‘Joseph Martin’ celebrates his 100th birthday!

Joseph Martin, a WW2 veteran and lifelong New Bedford resident is celebrating his 100th birthday! Born on August 15th, 1923 Joseph has lived through 100 years of ups, downs, and world events that most of us only can read about.

He fought in the “Battle of the Bulge” also known as the Ardennes Offensive, which was the last major German offensive campaign on the Western Front during World War II. The battle lasted for five weeks from December 16th 1944 to January 28th 1945 and was the largest and deadliest single battle fought by the United States in World War II and the third-deadliest in American history.

He also fought in Normandy, France during “Operation Neptune” better known as “D-Day”, which still is the largest seaborne invasion in history.

When I asked Joesph about his experience in these battles he was very humble seemingly brushing over these accolades as him “just doing what was needed of him”. Although you won’t find Mr. Martin bragging, his family is extremely proud, and the short time I spent speaking with him, everybody who walked by wanted to stop and say hello to the man himself.

Joseph Martin is one of the last members of “The greatest Generation” and it was quite the honor to sit and speak with him. His childhood took place during the great depression, and the year after he graduated high school he was sent over seas to fight in WW2.

100 years later and Mr. Martin can still be found putting smiles on faces playing patriotic songs on his harmonica.

Fort Rodman flag to honor Fairhaven’s Joseph “Charles” Messier, WWII Army Air Veteran

During the month of July, the 46th Lights for Peace flag to fly at the Fort Taber – Fort Rodman Military Museum honors the memory of Joseph “Charles” Messier, formerly of Fairhaven who passed away April 9, 2023 at the age of 101. He served proudly in the U.S. Army Air Corps as a B-17 door gunner during WWII.

Known by his middle name “Charles,” he was born in 1922 and was raised in New Bedford, the son of the late Alphonse and Elmire (Vadeboncoeur) Messier. He moved to Fairhaven in 1956 and resided there for the next sixty-seven years. He was the loving husband of the late Mary (Borges) Messier.

Charles served in the US Army Air Corp earning the rank of Sergeant. According to his obituary, during his time in the military, he “participated in five major bombing campaigns as a B-17 door gunner, flying into the pre-invasion countries of Italy, France and the Balkans.”

After serving his country, he returned home and was employed by Firestone. He later worked as a presser at the Acushnet Company Golf Division where he was employed for over 30 years.

Charles was a very talented woodworker, which he learned at an early age. He perfected his skill and became a furniture maker as well. Over the years he attended craft shows with his wife, selling his wares. He was also a communicant of St. Mary’s Church and was a member of the Fin, Fur and Feather Club in Mattapoisett.

J. Charles Messier passed away on April 9, 2023, at the age of 101, at the Royal Nursing Center in Falmouth. He was the last of six children and was predeceased by his siblings: Leo, Adrien, Edmond and Robert Messier and Annette Hanks. He is survived by several nieces and nephews to include Lucille Kenney of Pawtucket, RI and Raymond Hanks and his wife Bernadette of Mattapoisett. He is also survived by many great nieces and nephews.

Linda Ferreira, of Empire Ford of New Bedford, researches the life histories of area residents. American flags are provided by Empire Ford of New Bedford. Flags are raised by the staff at Fort Taber – Fort Rodman Military Museum. Those who would like to honor a local veteran in the future can contact Ferreira at lferreira@buyempireautogroup.com.

Joseph “Charles” Messier, formerly of Fairhaven.


Empire Ford of New Bedford

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Newport Fire Department mourns sudden passing of FF Maribeth Redman

Maribeth Redman 35, of Narragansett RI, died suddenly on July 9, 2023. She was a graduate of East Greenwich High school, class of 2006, graduated from the University of Rhode Island in 2011, and just recently achieved her lifelong dream in 2022 becoming a Newport firefighter. The City of Newport fire houses have been draped in ceremonial bunting, and flags have been lowered to half-staff in the wake of her loss.

The City of Newport released this statement on social media:

🖤💜🖤💜 Newport’s fire houses have been draped in ceremonial bunting, and flags have been lowered to half-staff as Newport’s bravest mourn the loss of one of their own. Firefighter Maribeth Redman, who joined the Newport Fire Department in November of 2022, passed away suddenly over the weekend.

Our hearts, prayers, and deepest sympathies are with the Redman family and all those who knew her. Firefighter Redman served the City of Newport and its residents with great dedication, and her presence will be sorely missed. 🖤💜🖤💜”

City of Newport photo.

The Professional Firefighters of Newport, IAFF Local 1080 also released a heartfelt statement on social media:

“The Professional Firefighters of Newport, IAFF Local 1080 regret to inform you of the passing of our sister, Firefighter Maribeth Redman. Firefighter Redman exemplified leadership capabilities early on in her career as class president of RI Fire Academy class 022.

Firefighter Redman served the city of Newport and its visitors with distinction and honor. Rest easy sister. You have answered your last alarm, your duties well done, your brothers and sisters have it from here.”

Visiting hours will be held from 4-8pm on (Monday July 17, 2023) at the Nardolillo Funeral Home & Crematory – SOUTH COUNTY CHAPEL, 1111 Boston Neck Road, (Rt. 1A), Narragansett, RI, 02882.

Her Mass of Christian Burial will be celebrated the following day at 11am on Tuesday, July 18, 2023 at St. Mary Star of the Sea Church, 864 Point Judith Road, Narragansett, RI. All are invited to meet directly at the church. Burial will follow at Saint Francis Cemetery, 125 George Schaeffer Street, Wakefield, RI.

Nardolillo Funeral Home photo.

New Bedford’s Fort Taber Flag Honors U.S. Navy Veteran George P. Randall

During the month of June, the 45th Lights for Peace flag to fly at the Fort Taber – Fort Rodman Military Museum honors the memory of George Pierce Randall of Mattapoisett, who passed away on December 31, 2022 at the age of 93. George, who was affectionately called “Porgie,” served as a Machinist Apprentice in the United States Navy during the Korean War.

George was born on March 15, 1929 in New Bedford, MA, son of the late Jeremiah L. and Lillian I. (Ingalls) Randall. George called Mattapoisett his home and spent most of his life living and working in the town he loved. He enlisted in the United States Navy on August 21, 1950. Randall served a total of three years, nine months and 26 days, with the majority of his time spent either at sea or abroad. Upon completing duty, Randall was awarded the National Defense Service Medal and the Navy Occupation Service Medal with European clasp.

Throughout the years, George was employed as a farmer on the family farm, located on Randall Lane in Mattapoisett. He also worked as a logger, while living in Oregon, before coming back home to Mattapoisett and working as a long-distance truck driver. During his later years, he worked as a heavy equipment operator for the town of Mattapoisett until his retirement.

“Porgie” absolutely loved his hometown of Mattapoisett and was named “Mattapoisett Man of the Year” in 2007 by the Standard-Times. According to the article, Randall’s “biggest accomplishment that year was undoubtedly his successful fight to preserve the Mattapoisett town seal after a proposal from the selectmen to render it more historically and politically correct.” He felt it was important to maintain the original town seal. “After researching the seal’s history at the Town Hall, Mr. Randall spent days circulating a petition to preserve the seal; he wrote letters to the editor and bought a two-page ad in the local weekly citing his objections to the proposed change.” The article was placed on the warrant for the Town Meeting and the town voted 124-26 to keep the seal as is.

Randall fought to preserve the history and hometown feel of the town he loved. “I can remember going down the wharf in a wagon with my father to load lambs for the Vineyard onto the Alice Wentworth, an old schooner that came into Mattapoisett all the time,” he recalled. He explained that the changes taking place in the town were worrying him. “They keep raising taxes and the kids are moving out. Families that are here four or five generations and their kids have to go to Wareham to get a house. The old names in town are disappearing. My father used to sell land for $10 an acre. ‘How many acres you want?’ he used to say. Not anymore. It’s sad.”

Randall was an active participant in town politics. “George never missed a Town Meeting or vote,” explained Judy Anthony, a family friend who was quoted in a previous Standard-Times article. “Everything he does is for the good of the town. He has a heart bigger than himself. You may not agree with him, but he never does it for himself. He just loves Mattapoisett.”

In fact, at the “young” age of 80, George P. Randall, he was elected Selectman of the town of Mattapoisett. His campaign slogan “Common man, common cause, common sense,” earned him many supporters.

Randall’s daughter, Marcia, recalled how her dad was proud to be a veteran. He was “honored to take part in Memorial and Veterans Day ceremonies, where he would recite the Gettysburg Address from memory.”

Randall was a lifetime member and Post Commander of the Veterans of Foreign Wars Post #2982 in Fairhaven, a member of the American Legion Florence Eastman Post #280 and Fairhaven Post #166, John Day Elks Lodge #1824 and the Fraternal Order of Eagles in Lakeville. He was also a leader in the Agricultural Grange of Mattapoisett.

Survivors include his three daughters: Cheryl Randall-Mach and her husband Steven of Mattapoisett, Marcia Randall-Thorne and her husband Joseph of Egg Harbor, NJ and Cristal Medeiros and her husband Steven of Dartmouth; a sister, Eunice Stoleki of Sturbridge, 2 grandsons: Pierce Randall and Jack Medeiros; his Godchild, Valerie Nichols; and many nieces and nephews. He was the companion of the late Elaine Vandament and the brother of the late Lewis (Pat) Randall, Leonard Randall and Geraldine Stewart.

Linda Ferreira, of Empire Ford of New Bedford, researches the life histories of area residents. American flags are provided by Empire Ford of New Bedford. Flags are raised by the staff at Fort Taber – Fort Rodman Military Museum. Those who would like to honor a local veteran in the future can contact Ferreira at lferreira@buyempireautogroup.com.

South end New Bedford Police Station crew pays it forward for 5-year old boy

“We appreciate that New Bedford Guide did an article on this yesterday. We would now like to show everyone the happy ending to the story (since the cat is out of the bag 🙊😊).

Ofc. Jenny Roman took a report last week for a 5 year old boy who had lost his iPad. The tablet was very important to this child and Ofc. Roman realized it was very unlikely to be returned to him. So, she took up a collection among her fellow south-end officers and had enough for a new iPad in less than an hour.

Today, she presented the young boy and his family with a brand new iPad and protective case on behalf of the south-end crew. Ofc. Roman and her co-workers are a great example of the type of compassionate officers we have here amongst the ranks of the New Bedford Police Department.

We are blessed.”-New Bedford Police Department.

L to R: Karrie Gustafson, Landon Andrade, Casey Andrade, and Ofc. Jenny Roman. New Bedford Police Department photo.

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