The lunchtime crowd on Cincinnati’s Fountain Square was filled with waves of military caps and uniforms recently. It was National Purple Heart Day and military veterans were out in full force.
For its part of the festivities, the Postal Service presented a framed copy of the recently reissued Purple Heart Stamp to Korean War Veteran Howard Osterkamp.
Associate Supervisor Charles Watson, a two-time Bronze Star and three-time Purple Heart recipient, spoke candidly of his military career. He was awarded his first two Purple Hearts for his service in 1993 in Mogadishu, Somolia, where he took three bullets. He received his third Purple Heart for taking shrapnel in his lower back during the Iraq invasion in 2003.
This was USPS’ seventh year to participate in Purple Heart Day.
From left – Cincinnati Postmaster Darryl Myers, Associate Supervisor Charles Watson and Korean War Veteran Howard Osterkamp. – Photo by David Walton
According to the Military Order of the Purple Heart, the medal is the oldest military decoration in the world in present use and the first award made available to a common soldier.
The reissuance of the Purple Heart stamp honors the sacrifices of the men and women who serve in the U.S. military. It was first issued in 2003.
Cape May Point, NJ
Although none of the latest stamps feature New Jersey lighthouses, Cape May
Point Postmaster Melissa Lomax celebrated their release with a first-day-of-issue event.
Cape May Point Postmaster Melissa Lomax (third from right) hosted a stamp and art event.
The Gulf Coast Lighthouses stamps, the latest in the Lighthouses series, were painted by Toms River, NJ, artist Howard Koslow’s. The most current set features the Matagorda Island lighthouse, near Port O’Connor, TX; Sabine Pass, near Sabine Pass, LA; Biloxi, in Biloxi, MS; Sand Island, near the entrance to Mobile Bay in Mobile, AL; and, Fort Jefferson, also known as Garden Key Lighthouse, west of Key West, FL, in Dry Tortugas Park.
During the event, two Herbert Pullinger prints were presented to the Cape May Point Post Office by the Cape May County Art League. Special guests included Art League President Arthur Joblin, board member Anna Marie Zabielski, and Cape May Point Mayor Carl Schupp.
“Herbert Pullinger is known for capturing everyday scenes of post World War II life along the Jersey Shore in the 1940s,” said Lomax.
Local artist and business woman, Pat Wenzel, also displayed her current pen and watercolor painting of the Cape May Point Post Office at the event. “She painted her rendition of the Post Office from a historic photo dated circa 1898,” Lomax said.
Jerry City, Ohio
Jerry City Postmaster Margaret Welty does so much for her community that Mayor Rick Tolbert honored her with a proclamation for her summer reading and writing program.
“Margaret is an outstanding citizen,” said Tolbert. “Her educational efforts for the youth of this community are wonderful and appreciated by the children and their parents.”
‘Catch the Summer Reading Bug’ was the theme of this year’s reading program.
“Last year, 32 participants read more than 700 books,” Welty told the mayor and those assembled at the meeting. “I hope this year’s group will be just as energetic and surpass last year’s total."
Children receive raffle tickets for each book read and three raffle tickets for each letter they write to a friend or relative. Once a week, a raffle ticket is drawn and that child is allowed to help out at the Post Office as ‘junior Postmaster’ for about an hour.
At the end of the six week program, a grand prize is presented to the child who read the most books. Other prizes are awarded for other initiatives including reading the longest book and writing the most letters.