Serving Those Who Served Us

A riveting discussion over breakfast with a World War II veteran in the Plainview Hospital cafeteria one morning led to an opportunity to thank local veterans for their service.

Inspired by what they learned about the veteran’s war experience, Plainview Hospital employees Margaret Gurlides, assistant director of food and nutrition, and Nina Eng, RD, chief clinical dietitian, decided to host a dinner to honor local veterans.

Thirty-two veterans from the Plainview/Bethpage area, including some North Shore-LIJ Health System employees, attended the dinner held in November at the hospital. East Islip High School Hospitality and Culinary Academy students were on hand to serve the veterans, and a local Boy Scout troop saluted the veterans upon their arrival. Huntington Manor Fire Department Explorer Post 1650 delivered the honor guard, and the daughter of Xavier Haynes, supervisor of food services, sang “The Star-Spangled Banner.” During the dinner, the veterans were addressed by Michael Fener, executive director of Plainview and Syosset hospitals, and Andrew Roberts, then director of the office of military and veterans liaison services at North Shore-LIJ.

“It was so rewarding and special to meet a World War II Purple Heart recipient and honor all of the veterans who bravely served our country,” Ms. Gurlides said.

The veterans said they enjoyed themselves, and a group of them brought a plaque to the hospital in January to show their appreciation.

For more information, contact Ms. Gurlides at 516-719-2333.

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