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Bradford NATIONAL Bank
For Immediate Release
May 20, 2008
Bradford National Bank and the American Veterans Traveling Tribute
Greenville - Bradford National Bank, in conjunction with the Bond County Veteran groups, will be sponsoring Youth Night at the American Veterans Traveling Tribute (AVTT), which features the Vietnam Memorial Traveling Wall. Youth night will be held Friday, August 1 and the entire event will be held July 31st through August 3rd in conjunction with the Bond County Fair. The AVTT travels the country to provide a forum for local communities to come together to honor, respect and remember all who have sacrificed their lives for our countries freedom.
The featured guest on the main stage for the night is Nikki Mendicino, of Springdale, PA. She will be joined by Major General Wayne Erck, U.S. Army, retired. Since the age of ten, Nikki has been involved in POW/MIA issues. For the past eight years, she has traveled the country speaking on behalf of active duty troops, Veteran’s and Veteran’s Affairs. Today, at age 19, she continues these activities while attending college.
She said, “It is always an honor to be able to speak at the Moving Wall. To be able to convey a message of support to our Veterans and also to help kids understand the meaning of the Moving Wall is very important to me.”
Her commitment to the cause began in 1998 when she interviewed a WWII Veteran. She came away from that meeting with more questions than answers and so began an extensive journey to learn all she could about American Veterans. That led her to the Vietnam Memorial and the 58,253 names of those who lost their lives while serving in Vietnam, and those still listed as MIA/POW. “The very first Veteran event I ever attended was an event with the Moving Wall when it was in my area. I was only 11 years old then and looking back, I realized how much I learned from those events and how much they meant to me,” Mendicino said. She added, “Many people may never be able to go to Washington D.C. to see the actual Vietnam Veterans Memorial and being able to attend events at the Moving Wall is a very meaningful experience.”
She made it her charge in life to educate Americans, particularly her generation, about the service of Veterans from all wars. Do a Google search of “Nikki Mendicino” and you will be amazed at what this young woman has accomplished on behalf of American troops and Veterans.
Tony Koonce, co-chairman of the AVTT, said, “We are so fortunate to have Nikki Mendicino speaking in our community. She is a dynamic speaker that will educate and captivate her audience. Once you hear her speak, there is absolutely no question about her commitment to Veterans issues.”
Bradford National Bank president Frank Joy said, “It is an honor for us to sponsor youth night in conjunction with the American Veterans Traveling Tribute. Nikki is a very inspirational young woman who will move young and old alike.”
Youth Night at the American Veteran’s Traveling Tribute is free and open to the public.
Frank Joy welcomes Nikki Mendicino to Greenville. Nikki is
the keynote speaker for Youth Night.
At the start of Youth Night, local Veteran groups present the colors
State Flags were paraded through the main tent prior to the
presentment in front of The Wall.
At the beginning of Youth Night, local Boy Scouts and Girl Scouts presented the
state colors in front of The Wall. It was a moving ceremony.
20 year old Nikki Mendicino from near Pittsburgh, PA was the keynote speaker
for Youth Night. Nikki has been speaking about Veteran's issues, including
POW/MIA issues, since she was 10 years old.
As part of the concluding Youth Night ceremony, a 21 gun salute
was fired over The Wall.
At the conclusion of Youth Night activities, Echo Taps was played in front of The Wall.
Following her keynote address, Frank Joy congratulates Nikki on a great job.
Following the program, many people had Nikki sign their programs.
Greenville Mayor Alan Gaffner speaks with Nikki at the conclusion of
Youth Night activities.
Prior to her Youth Night appearance, Nikki visited downtown Greenville with her
sister Natalie (left) and her mother. Here, they are visiting the Bond County Veteran's
Memorial on the Courthouse lawn.