Historical Society to honor Veterans Strong Center at annual dinner May 17

Published on Thursday, 10 May 2018 20:40


BRISTOL - The Bristol Historical Society’s Annual Dinner will honor the Veterans Strong Center and a local student interested in history May 17 at Nuchies.

The dinner will begin with a social hour at 5:30 p.m. and the program will begin at 6.

The historical society will honor its Volunteer of the Year, who will be announced at the dinner, and will present its Community Award and a $750 check to the recipient of its annual scholarship. The dinner event will also include raffles.

Bernie O’Keefe, chairman of the dinner committee, said the scholarship is given each year to a student who is interested in history and who writes an essay on the history of Bristol. This year’s recipient is Desmond DeVille, a student at Bristol Central High School.

“He wrote an essay on one of the more profound advocates for the City of Bristol, Albert Rockwell, and his estate,” said O’Keefe. “Rockwell donated the Boulevard to the city and provided the building there for the school which now stands. There are a couple of buildings from his estate still standing, but the city unfortunately took the rest of Brightwood Hall down and sold the stones to a church in New Britain.”

O’Keefe noted that DeVille is also “very active in music,” playing piano and singing in the school’s choral group. He also plays baseball for the school. He plans to attend the University of Virginia.

The society will present its Community Award to the Veterans Strong Center, located in City Hall. After the closing of the Army Strong Centers, the Bristol Veterans Council stepped up to create the Veterans Strong Center, a non-profit organization dedicated to providing information and resources to all veterans, active service members and military families in Bristol and surrounding communities.

“We like to thank local organizations in the community that do social work,” said O’Keefe. “We accept nominations from our members, who are expected to show up and identify why this organization should be honored. We had three or four members nominate the Veterans Strong Center for the good work they do on behalf of our veterans.”

O’Keefe encouraged people to attend the meeting, which he said typically raises between $4,000 and $5,000 to support the Bristol Historical Society’s scholarships and operations.

“It will be a light event where we will talk about the renovations of our building and about history,” said O’Keefe.

Admission to the Bristol Historical Society’s annual dinner is $30.

For more information, call The Bristol Historical Society at 860-583-6309 or visit bristolhistoricalsociety.org.

Brian M. Johnson can be reached at 860-973-1806 or bjohnson@bristolpress.com.

Posted in The Bristol Press, Bristol on Thursday, 10 May 2018 20:40. Updated: Thursday, 10 May 2018 20:42.