One of the last Flying Tigers
Brig. Gen. John McGuiness, the commanding general of the Natick Soldier Systems Center, shakes hands with Joseph Poshesko at the Natick Soldier Systems Center Armed Forces Day luncheon with leaders of the Natick Veterans organizations. Poshesko, 96, is the oldest living member of the World War II Flying Tigers.

NATICK, Mass. (May 21, 2012) -- On a normal day at the Natick Soldier Systems Center's dining facility, Soldiers mull in and out, get their lunch and go back to their place of duty. Recently, the DFAC was filled with stories of the past as 12 Natick veterans visited for an Armed Forces Day luncheon.

At one table was Joseph Poshesko, the oldest living member of the World War II Flying Tigers, telling Maj. Kathleen Yancosek about his days in uniform.

In another booth, Staff Sgt. Sharalis Canales explaining to Ed Jolley, a Marine who served in Korea, about what the Better Opportunities for Single Soldiers program does to enhance the off-duty time for young Soldiers.

Veterans from every war from World War II to Operation Enduring Freedom spent part of the day sharing stories about their time wearing the uniform of the United States.

"We wanted to take time to share with the leaders of the Natick veterans community," said Command Sgt. Maj. Brian Warren. "Watching our Soldiers and the veterans share stories made it a special day."

Paul Carew, the veterans service officer for the Town of Natick helped organize the luncheon.

"I learned a lot about what the Soldiers at Natick do to better our military," said Carew, who served in Vietnam in the Marines. "The smiles on the guys' faces as they shared their experiences with the Soldiers was something to treasure. They're already looking forward to doing it again next year."

It was just a small luncheon that made for memories.

"Our goal was to get our Soldiers to learn about what it was like to serve in World War II, Korea, Vietnam and the veterans to learn about the training our Soldiers receive," said John Harlow, the NSSC public affairs officer who hosted the luncheon. "When asking both the veterans and Soldiers if they learned anything from each other, they all said 'yes.' That was mission accomplished."

Page last updated Tue May 22nd, 2012 at 08:16