Niagara Gazette — A Next-of-Kin Gold Star Lapel Button was presented to Blanche Lucas of Lockport on Sunday — 45 years after her husband was killed in Vietnam. A construction mechanic in the United States Navy, Richard M. Sprout was killed in action in Dong Ha, Vietnam in 1968 during an artillery attack on base. Lucas, who has since remarried, never received the Gold Star Lapel Button at the time of Sprout’s death. Congressman Chris Collins office secured the Gold Star Lapel Button for Lucas and determined that her late husband was eligible for several medals for his bravery during service. In addition to her Gold Star Lapel Button, Collins presented Lucas with her late husband’s Purple Heart, National Defense Service Medal, Vietnam Service Medal, Navy Unit Commendation Ribbon and Combat Action Ribbon. “Both Blanche Lucas and her late husband failed to receive the acknowledgement they deserved for their service and sacrifice to our great country,” Collins said. “Blanche was never properly recognized for her loss as a war widow and her late husband was not fully honored for giving his life in defense of his country. Today we pay tribute to them both.” Along with Sen. George Maziarz and Earl Schmidt of the Niagara County Veterans Service Office, Collins presented the medals to Lucas during a district meeting of the Veterans of Foreign Wars at VFW Post 2535 in Lockport. Lucas is a member of the Women’s Auxiliary of Post 2535. “The Veterans of Foreign Wars have always said, ‘We honor the fallen by serving the living,’ ” said Schmidt, director of the Niagara County Veterans Service Agency. “The Niagara County Veterans Service Agency and County Clerk Wayne Jagow have made ensuring that our heroes who served get their due, and that their survivors get proper closure."
- Local veteran's story airing on American Heroes Channel Monday night A Lockport native's World War II exploits are featured in "Those Damned Engineers," an episode of the six-part series "Against the Odds" that's being shown at 10 tonight on the American Heroes Channel.
- Norman Snyder
- Niagara-Wheatfield staff facing Sabres alumni, hair clippers on Monday It began as a way to honor the life of someone extremely close to her.
- Almost 30 years after his death, Medal of Honor to be awarded to Lockport man When Pat Kennedy received a call in early February from a woman in the Army telling her that her father was chosen to be a Medal of Honor recipient, she thought it was a scam. After all, her father, Bill Leonard, passed away almost 30 years ago.
DELUCA: Niagara parents considering move for medical marijuana
To really see how you really feel about medical marijuana, you'd have to meet Tony Tallarico. He's 9-years-old and just a beautiful kid, with dark eyes and dark hair. I met him just the other day in his Portage Road home and, as his mom and I talked, he sat in his wheelchair in the middle of his family's small living room repeatedly turning his head left and right, his eyes casting about the room as is he was searching for something.
- A hero's farewell for Ricky Jones Hero -- It was a word spoken over and over and over in the filled to over-flowing sanctuary of Riverside Presbyterian Church on Tuesday morning.
Lockport's Skateland behind in tax payments, faces foreclosure
The owners of Skateland Family Fun Center on Lincoln Avenue announced Sunday that they will be facing foreclosure on the business unless they can come up with a sizable city property tax payment which is due by May.
SLIDESHOW: Olcott Polar Bear Swim for Sight held Sunday
The 45th annual Olcott Polar Bear Swim for Sight was held Sunday afternoon at Olcott Beach.
- Olcott readies for Sunday's big dip Breaking the ice has begun at Olcott Beach in preparation for the brave souls who will charge into Lake Ontario this weekend.
- More than 100 years of American uniforms
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