Honoring Fallen at Tomb of the Unknown

by Michael Byrne  |  September 03, 2015

Honoring Fallen at Tomb of the Unknown IVPs Christopher Mabe, Henry Nicholas and Gary Tavormina prepare to lay wreath at the Tomb of the Unknown. Photo credit Kevin Contee

Three AFSCME International vice presidents and military veterans participated in a wreath-laying ceremony Aug. 27, at the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier at Arlington National Cemetery, honoring those who paid the ultimate sacrifice in service to our nation.

“I can think of no greater privilege than to honor the loss of our fallen military heroes who died so that we may be free,” said IVP Christopher Mabe, president of the Ohio Civil Service Employees Association (OCSEA)/AFSCME Local 11. Mabe is a U.S. Army veteran who served several tours in Saudi Arabia and Kuwait during the first Gulf War.

Also participating in the ceremony, in suburban Washington, DC, were IVP Henry Nicholas, president of the National Union of Hospital and Health Care Employees NUHHCE/AFSCME District 1199c, who served in the U.S. Navy from 1956 to 1959; and IVP Gary Tavormina, chair of the AFSCME Retirees Council, who served in the Army from 1954 to 1956. Joining the group as an observer was AFSCME Sec.-Treas. Laura Reyes.

AFSCME is identifying members of the union and families who are veterans of U.S. military service, and is working to determine their needs and views, as well as mobilizing these members on issues and matters of importance to veterans.

The Arlington ceremony was sponsored by “No Greater Love,” a nonprofit organization honoring fallen service members and their families. AFSCME participated in this and other ceremonies by virtue of its membership in the AFL-CIO Union Veterans Council.

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