Torrington resident Gerry Wilbur, who was named area Veteran of the Year Veterans of Foreign War (VFW) Post 296 during Winsted’s annual Memorial Day ceremony on May 27 at East End Park.
At Winsted’s annual Memorial Day ceremony on May 27 held at East End Park, Torrington resident Gerry Wilbur was named the Veteran of the Year by Veterans of Foreign War (VFW) Post 296.
The honor is traditionally given to a local area veteran at the yearly ceremony.
The award was presented to Wilbur by Carmelina M. Connole, president of VFW Post 296 Auxiliary.
Wilbur grew up in Sharon and graduated from Housatonic Valley Regional High School in 1966.
He enlisted in the United States Army in 1968 and completed basic training at Fort Dix in New Jersey.
Wilbur completed advanced training for artillery and weapons assembly at Fort Sill in Oklahoma.
After his training, he was stationed in Budingen, Germany for 18 months where he received top secret clearance from the United States government and NATO, conducting classified work with nuclear weapons.
Wilbur separated from the Army in May 1970 with the rank of E4 and received his honorable discharge in May 1974.
He received Good Conduct, National Defense, and Connecticut Veterans Wartime Service medals.
In 1985 Wilbur joined the VFW and has served as a trustee.
“Gerry has remained active with the VFW and loves to give back to his community,” Connole said. “He has assumed responsibility for the very successful poppy campaign, participates in the laying of flags of Veteran’s graves on Memorial Day and volunteers at many dinners and fundraisers sponsored by the VFW.”
Wilbur was humble in accepting his award, giving a thank you to both Connole and the audience before he sat down to watch the rest of the ceremony.