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Romie Bassetto, who served in the Army during the Vietnam War and is the commander of American Legion District 26, has been honored as the Veteran of the Year for California’s 13th Senate District.
In a surprise ceremony on October 27, state Senator Jerry Hill commended Bassetto for his leadership and service to veterans and their families, and his seemingly tireless volunteer work as a member of organizations to aid and honor veterans, including the American Legion Post 105, Vietnam Veterans of America Chapter 464, AMVETS Post 53 and the Avenue of Flags Committee at the Golden Gate National Cemetery.
“Romie is an example to his peers and our community for his compassion and selflessness – his kindness can be seen in gestures big and small,” said Hill, D-San Mateo and Santa Clara Counties, in the presentation at American Legion Post 105.
Hill noted that this year Bassetto is organizing Redwood City’s Veterans Day Parade and festivities as well as a ceremony in December to observe the 75th anniversary of Pearl Harbor Day. Bassetto was a co-organizer of the visit of “The Traveling Wall that Heals,” when it came to the Golden Gate National Cemetery in 2015.
In addition, Bassetto has long been the grillmaster at veterans’ events and fundraisers, the volunteer who rises before dawn to get donuts for the Boy and Girl Scouts who place flags at gravesites in the national cemetery before Memorial Day, and the volunteer who wakes at 3 a.m. on Memorial Day to brew the many gallons of coffee provided to visitors attending the annual ceremony at the cemetery. Bassetto also serves as a host at American Legion Post 105’s twice-weekly bingo games, which is where an astonished Bassetto received his proclamation from Hill.
-- October 27, 2016, Redwood City