On Wednesday night in Bucks County, recent military enlistees were joined by family, friends, and community members at the Brookside Manor in Feasterville for a ceremony organized by Our Community Serves (OCS) in recognition of their commitment to enter military service.

The program included guest speaker David McCormick, combat veteran of the 82nd Airborne and former U.S. Senate candidate, and a speech entitled, “How I Feel About My Enlisted Child,” written and read by Blue Star Mother Jenny Mars.

An invocation was given by Kenneth J. Sylvester, ACS Chaplain, U.S. Coast Guard, and the national anthem was performed by Cadet Gianna Mars. SSgt. David Jacoby, Air National Guard, served as the event’s Master of Ceremonies.

“I believe very deeply that our military is a key part of what’s right about America — it’s one of the few institutions nowadays that people still trust,” said McCormick. “All of you, in this moment of challenge, have stepped up.”

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The event was organized by Blue Star Mom Aanya Joanne Moore, who leads OCS Bucks County, with the help of Blue Star Mothers of America, Inc., PA9 — Philadelphia Chapter members Anita Fleming, Jenny Mars, Christine Gains, Teri Szczurowski, Dawn Gaffney and Diane Horan (President), as well as Blue Star Family: Terri Crestman (wife of Colonel Cressman, retired).

Since 2009, OCS enlistee recognition ceremonies have been held by local communities nationwide in banquet halls, auditoriums, and sports arenas with tens of thousands of people attending — a testimony to the appreciation of the young men and women entering military service.

OCS ceremonies are events organized by parents, educators, business and community leaders, and veterans to provide community support for students, parents, and families as their family member transitions into military service and joins the one percent of Americans who serve in uniform. 

Each OCS student-enlistee receives a Certificate of Recognition from Our Community Salutes, a pocket guide of the U.S. Constitution, gifts by supportive sponsors, and the recognition that their community of veterans, parents, and community leaders supports their decision to serve.

Marine enlistees honored included David Ferry, Liam Robinson, Kayla Mayberry, Alex Moya, Daniel Rainville, Jordan Pearson, Ainsley Janonne-Naugler, Sam Riddle, Aaron Benjamin, Lucas Bellpaternoster, Nabil Arkadan, and John Chavez.

Army enlistees honored included Brayden Schneider, James Radyn (Army National Guard), Rosemarie Overholt (Army National Guard), and Daniel Harvey.

Other notable attendees included veterans Fred Chropka, Bill Morris, Dale Cagenello, Dave Askew, American Veterans of Buckingham Springs, USCG Auxiliary Chris and Connie Whalen, Peter Chong, Macklin Wagner, and Colonel Lawrence Rubini (retired).

Olivia DeMarco is an Editorial Associate with Broad + Liberty. She previously served as a legislative aide in the Pennsylvania House of Representatives. She holds a Masters in Public Policy from Temple University.

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