Saturday, February 06, 2016

CT Trees of Honor Monthly News Letter - Upcoming Events

Connecticut Trees of Honor Memorial, Inc.

Walnut Grove Road - Middletown, CT

A message from the CTHM president...

February –  the month we celebrate love, heart health, a winter getaway,  the hint of longer days and the promise of another welcome Spring not far off.  We hope you can join us on February 13th for our Hearts of Gold Dinner Dance at the elegant Bond Ballroom high up on the 11th floor overlooking our beautiful state Capitol.  It will be a night to remember.

What’s next? Committee members are busy planning for work to continue at the Memorial in order to have everything completed for dedication on September 17th. We will be installing handsome stone-faced pillars, signs, walls, plaques and lighting in the Entrance Plaza to complete the attractive design. The Flag Ceremonial Plaza will see the addition of a low, arcing 90’ sitting wall around the back of the design which will have inscribed a famous and very meaningful quote.In case you have not visited the Memorial as yet, brick pavers for each plaza and the entire walkway were installed in summer 2015.  We have incorporated the donated, engraved bricks that supporters have generously purchased near the Flag Ceremonial Plaza with more to be added this summer.  Sponsored black steel benches were also installed late this fall by volunteers from the Middletown Fire Department and Parks Department. They are a most welcome and attractive addition to the Memorial design. The areas around each bench will be tidied up and reseeded this spring.   Lighting and security cameras will be mounted on lovely black, decorative poles this spring/summer.

If you have visited the Memorial, you may be wondering about that large block of concrete in front of the flagpoles? ……..Just a few weeks ago, members of the committee made a trip to PA to visit acclaimed sculptor, Mr. Andrew Chernak (creator of the Gold Star Mothers sculpture in Waterbury City Hall) to see his progress in creating our grand and impressive commissioned sculpture. This amazing, original design will be delivered and mounted on the concrete base and unveiled at our September 17th dedication ceremony.

“Sign, sign, everywhere a sign”  - remember that old song?  Committee members are working with local city officials and state agencies to realize major highway and local road signs directing people to the Memorial in Veterans Memorial Park.

And what design would be complete without some lovely landscaping? Do you have a green thumb?  Landscape companies, garden clubs, individuals and organizations are invited to design and maintain a garden in the Memorial area.  Donations of perennials, shrubbery, rose and other bushes are needed. Please contact me if you are interested in offering a design or wish to donate.

On another note…… I, as well as committee members have seen and met so many visitors to the Memorial while we have been there working, checking on progress, etc. Some approach us to talk and comment; others remain silent and enjoy their time in their own way.  Judging by the number of people who have been observed stopping at specific trees and monuments, we are heartened that the Memorial is becoming a very special place.  All the little stones and small tokens placed on top of the monuments is always a wonderful reminder of visitors.

Thank you for your continued support as we work together to forever honor and remember our fallen who gave their lives in the line of duty so far away from home and all our veterans.  The CT Trees of Honor Memorial is a unique and welcoming place to visit  - a place our generation and those to come will appreciate the meaning of duty, sacrifice and love of country.

Sue Martucci
Upcoming Events

February 13, 2016 "Heats of Gold Dinner Dance" - Bond Ballroom - Hilton Homewood Suites Hotel - 338 Asylum Street - 11th Floor - Hartford, CT. Seats are still available. Please contact Sue Martucci at or 860-841-4287 to reserve your seats today. (See flyer below for more details)
Proceeds from the February 13, 2016 "Hearts of Gold Dinner Dance" at the Bond Ballroom at Hilton Homewood Suites Hotel in Hartford will benefit CT Trees of Honor Memorial - Middletown, CT.  To order your $75 dance tickets online CLICK HERE or send ticket requests with payment to CTHM, Inc. - P.O. Box 86 - Cromwell, CT 06416. Table reservations for 8 OR 10 can be made with one name and full payment.  All other seats will be on a first come basis. (Note: $35 of your ticket price is tax deductible to the extent allowed by law.)

Discounted, overnight suite accommodations available on the ground floor of the Homewood Suites Hotel. Please call the hotel directly at 860-524-0223 to reserve a room for $119/night using the Group Code HEARTS OF GOLD.

Cocktail hour from 6:00 - 7:00 p.m. followed by dinner and dancing from 7:00 - 11:00 p.m. to the music of Ruby & the Diamond Kings. Don’t delay; the deadline to reserve tickets is almost here – dust off your dance shoes and get ready for a great night of fun. Event Contact: Sue Martucci - or 860-841-4287.

March 12, 2016 "St Patrick Dinner Dance" hosted by St. George Men's Group to benefit the Connecticut Trees of Honor Memorial.  St. George Church Hall - 33 Whitfield Street - Guilford, CT.  Doors open at 6 p.m. with a traditional Irish dinner starting at 7 p.m. Dance the night away with music provided by John "Cadillac" Saville.  BYOB/set-ups provided.  Feel free to bring appetizers.  RSVP to 

St. Patrick Dinner Dance

March 12, 2016

St. George Church Hall
33 Whitfield Street
Guilford, CT
Doors open at 6 pm – with a traditional Irish dinner starting at 7  pm
Dance the night away with music by
John “Cadillac” Saville
BYOB/ set-ups provided
Feel free to bring appetizers 

September 17, 2016 Public Dedication Ceremony.  The Connecticut Trees of Honor Memorial Public Dedication will be held in conjunciton with the annual Run For The Fallen - CT this year.  More details to follow in future newsletters.  Be sure to SAVE THE DATE.
S A V E   T H E   D A T E  -  September 17, 2016
The combined committees from The Connecticut Trees of Honor Memorial and the Run For The Fallen - CT are pleased to announce that the Memorial public dedication ceremony will be held in conjunction with the annual Run For The Fallen - CT this year.  Please mark your calendar.
September 17, 2016

Public Dedication Ceremony for the CT Trees of Honor Memorial
In Conjunction with the Annual Run For The Fallen – CT

Veterans Memorial Park
Walnut Grove Road
Middletown, CT 06457
This will be an all-day event with the run starting around 6:00 a.m.  Guests will be invited to spend the day with us to cheer on the runners, participate in the run or walk, meet other military and gold star families and enjoy the music and patriotism surrounding this day. The Dedication Ceremony and Finish Line for the Run For The Fallen will be held around 2:30 p.m. at the memorial in Veterans Memorial Park; Walnut Grove Road; Middletown, CT 06457.  Please visit our websites as more details will become available over the next few months. and

Celebrate the birth of a Connecticut hero born in February...

SSG Richard Eaton, Jr. (2/9/66) of Guilford answered to "Rick" by family and friends.  He was a history buff who loved to read and played soccer and coached a children's soccer team while stationed in Honduras. His death came nearly two years after a hijacked plan crashed into his office at the Pentagon in the September 11, 2001 terrorist attacks.  He was not working at the Pentagon at the time because his office was being renovated. Eaton was in the Army Reserves and deployed to Iraq at the time of his death.  He was a young man who was dedicated to his country for which we will be forever grateful.
SPC Philip Schiller (2/18/91) of Barkhamsted joined the U.S. Army a few weeks after he graduated from high school.  While in high school he dreamed of becoming a pilot in the Air Force but decided on the Army instead.  His dream was to be a police officer one day.  He will be missed by his family and friends and will be remembered as an American hero.
SPC Jacob Martir-Gutierrez (2/22/83) of Norwich knew he wanted to be a soldier at a very young age.  It made him proud to be able to serve his country. He enlisted at the age of 17 and re-enlisted in 2002 after the terrorist attacks of September 11, 2001.  Martir is a part of the new "greatest generation" with the character that draws someone to selfless duty to country making him a hero.  We will never forget his sacrifice.
CPT Eric Paliwoda (2/23/75) of Farmington and West Hartford graduated from Conard High in 1993. He graduated from the U.S. Military Academy at West Point where he was a member of the Division I basketball and track and field teams. Paliwoda had been chosen to return to West Point as an instructor in the Department of Evironmental Studies. He will be missed and revered as a special leader who touched and changed many lives during his brief time on this earth.
SGT Steven J. DeLuzio (2/25/85) of Glastonbury was co-captain of his high school hockey team and elected two years as the class president.  He coached little league baseball in town and was an avid sports fan.  He attended Hofstra University before transferring to Norwich University in Vermont and enlisting in the Vermont Army National Guard.  After his first deployment to Iraq he returned to the University of Hartford and graduated Cum Laude with a degree in accounting.  He was engaged to be married upon his return from Afghanistan and will be missed by all who loved him. He is an American hero whose selfless sacrifice will never be forgotten.

Celebrate the Birth of a Connecticut Hero Born in March...

SFC Edward Kramer (3/1/70) of Southington was married and father of two daughters.  When he wasn't on duty as a soldier or a firefighter, he loved to be on the beach and fish.  He was a firefighter and a member of the North Carolina Army National Guard.  He will be missed by all the people whose lives were touch by just knowing and loving him.  He will always be remembered as an American hero who chose careers where he was often called upon to make selfless sacrifices.
SSG Ronald Spino (3/1/64) of Waterbury was a combat nurse who graduated from Holy Cross High School and Teikyo Post University.  He joined the U.S. Army as a medic in 1993 and later became a paratrooper called upon to parachute into war-ravaged areas to treat wounded soldiers.  He was married and had a step-daughter.  He will be remembered as a quiet man who had a great sense of humor.  His honorable devotion to helping the injured reminds us all of his selfless sacrifices made for our freedom.  He is an American hero who will never be forgotten.
SGT Joseph Nolan (3/10/77) of Waterbury graduated from Wolcott High School where he played football. He was an avid reader of military books and fascinated with international affairs.  In 1999, Nolan graduated from St. Joseph’s University, Philadelphia, PA with a B.A. degree in International Relations and a minor in Japanese.  In 2001, he graduated from the Defense Language Institute, Monterey, CA, third in his class in the Arabic Language.  Nolan was a military intelligence expert, cryptologist and translator in support of those in harm’s way. SGT Nolan was killed when an improvised explosive device detonated near his up-armored Humvee while his unit was on patrol in Fallujah, Iraq. Goodfellow Air Force Base honored Nolan by dedicating the 344th Military Intelligence Battalion Headquarters building to him and another fallen hero. Among the medals that Nolan earned are the Combat Action Badge, Purple Heart, Bronze Star, Army Achievement Medal, Army Good Conduct Medal, National Defense Service Medal, Iraq Campaign Medal, Global War on Terrorism Expeditionary Medal, Global War on Terrorism Service Medal, Army NCO Professional Development Ribbon, Army Service Ribbon and the Medal of Commendation. His devotion to his fellow soldiers makes him a man to be admired and never forgotten for answering the call to duty in defense of this country.
SGT David T. Friedrich (3/10/77) of Naugatuck was affectionately called Travis by family and friends.  He was a member of the cross-country team in high school and at Brockport State College in New York where he majored in criminal justice.  He was working on his master's degree in forensic science at the University of New Haven when he was called to active duty. Friedrich's selfless sacrifice for the independence of another nation sets a timeless example of courage and devotion to duty that will never be forgotten.
1LT Thomas Brown (3/13/82) of Shelton graduated from Notre Dame High School in Fairfield.  He loved to snowboard, skydive and was a certified scuba diver.  He was very active in baseball, basketball, track and soccer. He graduated from George Mason University with a B.A. in Government and International Politics. He graduated from Ranger school and also obtained his Airborne Wings. He led his life by example and would never ask his troops to do anything that he himself wouldn't do.  We will never forget the sacrifices he made every day as he served our great country.
LCpl. Lawrence Philippon (3/20/83) of West Hartford graduated from Conard High School where he was the starting ice hockey goalie and also a member of the lacrosse team.  He briefly attended Central Connecticut State University before enlisting in the U.S. Marine Corps in 2002.  One of his proud moments was the opportunity to carry the flag at former President Ronald Reagan's funeral procession in Washington, D.C. Philippon was engaged to be married upon his return.  We are indebted to him for his selfless service to our country.
SSG Frank Adamski III (3/30/84) of Plainfield graduated from Plainfield High School where he participated in football and track.  He entered the U.S. Army in 2005.  While stationed at Ft. Benning, GA he was a javelin instructor.  Adamski was married and had a daughter prior to his Afghanistan deployment. He will be recognized throughout history for his exceptional example of bravery and the heroic call to duty that he answered.
SSG Ari Cullers (3/30/83) of Waterford graduated from Waterford High School in 2001. Upon graduation, he enlisted in the U.S. Army where he earned many ribbons, honors and medals including the Bronze Star and Purple Heart.  He will always be recognized as a true American hero who will be remembered for his selfless service to our country.

Connecticut's Heroes

TSgt John Chapman
Cpl. Kemaphoom Chanawongse
GySgt. Phillip Jordan
SPC Wilfredo Perez Jr.
SSG Richard Eaton Jr.
SGT David Friedrich
PFC Anthony D'Agostino
SGM Phillip Albert
PFC Jeffrey Braun
CPT Eric Paliwoda
SGT Benjamin Gilman
SPC Tyanna Avery-Felder
SGT Felix Del Greco Jr.
DC3 Nathan Bruckenthal
PFC Melissa Hobart
SPC Jacob Martir
CWO William Brennan
Cpl. Kevin John Dempsey
SGT Joseph Nolan
LTC Michael McMahon
SSG Henry Irizarry
SPC Robert Hoyt
SSG Thomas Vitagliano
LCpl. Lawrence Philippon
LCpl. John Schmidt III
SPC Christopher Hoskins
MAJ Stephen Reich
Sgt. David Coullard
Capt. Brian Letendre
Cpl. Stephen Bixler
Cpl. Jordan Pierson
LCpl. Philip Johnson
PFC Nicholas Madaras


CPT Jason Hamill
SSG Joseph Phaneuf
SGT Richard Ford
PFC Stephen Richardson
PFC Orlando Gonzalez
1LT Keith Heidtman
SPC Andre Craig Jr.
SO1 (SEAL) Jason Lewis
SGT Jason Lantieri
Cpl. Christian Cotner
1Lt Thomas Brown
SFC Edward Kramer
SPC Dennis Pratt
CPT Benjamin Sklaver
Cpl. Xhacob Latorre
SSG Ronald Spino
LCpl. Tyler Griffin
SSG Edwin Rivera
SGT Steven DeLuzio
PFC Gebrah Noonan
SPC David Fahey Jr.
SFC Dae Han Park
SSG Frank E. Adamski III
Maj Raymond Estelle II
PFC Eric Soufrine
SOC (SEAL) Brian Bill
SGT Edward Frank II
SSG Ari Cullers
SPC Philip Schiller
CPT Andrew Pedersen-Keel
SSgt Todd J. Lobraico
Mailing Address:
CTHM, Inc.
P.O. Box 86
Cromwell, CT 06416
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