Interact Club’s Veterans Day Event

Asia Bertuccioli, Co-Sports editor, Senior

The town of Pelham has commemorated the heroism of military veterans who served our country in many ways, such as sending letters and holding a town parade. Due to the current pandemic, some of the planned events usually held to celebrate these heroes have been postponed this year as a safety precaution. However, this Veterans Day a new PMHS club, The Interact Club organized by President Jamie Burke and Vice president Nevan Malwana, both seniors, conducted a virtual event in which a fellow Pelham resident who served in the Vietnam War talked about his experiences, and students wore red handmade Poppy flowers to stand in solidarity. The red poppy came to symbolize the blood shed on the battlefield following the publication of the World War I poem “In Flanders Fields” by Lieutenant Colonel John McCrae .

At this virtual meeting, club members got to listen to Joe Durnin, a Pelham resident and former Pelham mayor, who enlisted in the army on September 27, 1967, to serve in the Vietnam War. He graduated from Iona College and, once enlisted, was sent to train under the Military Intelligence Agency to go undercover in Japan to gain information from locals.

“Going into a country where a thought process is so much different than ours was a wonderful and welcoming experience,” Durnin said.


Interact club members display their handmade poppies (Jamie Burke)

The Interact Club is sponsored by the Rotary Club and hopes to continue events like these open to club members as enriching experiences.

Club president Jamie Burke said, “I hope Interact club members and advisors who attended learned a little bit about Mr. Durnin’s unique story, as well about the importance of honoring our veterans. Our next project is to plant Crocuses in the Wolf’s Lane Park. It will serve to both beautify Pelham and demonstrate the presence of the club. Additionally, we are also planning to help out in the New Rochelle Hope Kitchen Cabinets.”

The Interact Club meets once a week and is open to all PMHS students who wish to join, and the google classroom code is oue3rv.