WXXI AM News

World War II veterans gather for the last time

Nov 12, 2018

Jack Foy, 94, is a veteran of World War II, and fought in the Battle of the Bulge.

The remaining members of a group of local World War II veterans gathered for a final ceremony to remember their experiences and those of their fellow veterans of the armed forces.

Jack Foy is one of the few remaining members the Genesee Valley Chapter of the Veterans of the Battle of the Bulge.

The group was formed over 20 years ago, he says.

“Started out with 99 guys, now I’m down to four -- and one of those guys is in hospice right now. It’s just nature taking its toll.”

Hundreds of people gathered to watch the men hold a Veterans Day ceremony for the last time at the Port of Rochester. The group of four shared their personal stories, remembered their fellow soldiers who had died in the war and since, and said their farewells to the community.

Max Boudakian says he's grateful to have been a part of this group.

"At this stage of my life, I’m 93, it has been one of the most satisfying relationships I have developed with the military in my life. Everything has to come to an end."

Foy read poetry to the crowd for his goodbye.

"Ask yourselves, now, with heads bowed, from where oh god came such men as these, the warriors of the so called greatest generation, a generation that has taken their final curtain calls? About 300 a day are answering their final bugle call and soon we all will have left. This country was truly blessed. The Ardennes woods are silent now. The battle smoke has fled. Seventy years and two have passed. Now only memories and the dead. Thank you."