Keeper of the Flame 

Dennis Malles of Montrose Business Association chats at a 2016 Veterans Day ceremony with Army veteran Grace M. Bleier (Rinzivillo), who was honored as a “Local Hero.”

From 2015-2019, each Veterans Day Montrose Business Association (MBA) honored Montrose residents, who fittingly are christened “local heroes,” by holding a popular ceremony at the gazebo in Veterans Park (next to Cortlandt Ambulance Corps). Montrose fire fighters and VA Hospital representatives attended, as well as many others.

Then 2020 came, and with it two years of a pandemic that made public gatherings inadvisable. There hasn’t been ceremony since the most recent one in 2019. This year, though, MBA President Dennis Malles (of Malles Auto Body & Towing) was determined to display at least token acknowledgement of the sacred secular holiday that honors those who served in America’s armed forces.

Malles recruited MBA members to help him hoist a banner in front of Hendrick Hudson High School to commemorate “the 11th hour of the 11th day of the 11th month,” denoting World War I’s armistice. Malles says, “We kept it simple this year, without honoring anyone in particular.”  

He’s right, because by keeping even a flicker of the flame burning bright for those who sacrified on our behalf, Malles and his Association honored everyone.  

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