Lowey Presents Posthumous Purple Heart to Rockland Family of WWI Veteran
NEW CITY, NY – Congresswoman Nita Lowey (D-NY17/Rockland-Westchester) today presented a posthumous Purple Heart Certificate and Medal to the New City family of World War I veteran Francesco Bastone at a ceremony in her New City office.
“As the nation prepares to mark Veterans Day and the 100th anniversary of the end of World War I, it is my honor to pay tribute to a hero of the Great War,” said Congresswoman Lowey. “The Purple Heart Certificate and Medal are a testament to Mr. Bastone’s distinguished service to our country, and I know the Bastone family will be enormously proud and inspired every time they look at them and think about his service and sacrifice.
Francesco Bastone enlisted in the U.S. Army in April 1918 and was honorably discharged in June 1919. He served as a Private in the American Expeditionary Force on the Western Front, in the 326th Infantry. He fought in the Meuse-Argonne Offensive, which lasted from September 26, 1918 until the Armistice on November 11, 1918. The Offensive was the deadliest in American history, with an estimated 26,277 killed and more than 95,000 wounded. Mr. Bastone was among those injured in a mustard gas attack in October 1918, and was hospitalized for more than five months afterward. His injury was most likely the cause of his fatal fibrosis and tuberculosis and is what entitles him to this posthumous award.
Lowey was joined at the ceremony by Mr. Bastone’s 92-year-old son, four grandchildren, and a granddaughter-in-law.
Veterans or family members who believe they or a loved one are eligible for service medals should contact Lowey’s White Plains District Office (914-428-1707) or New City District Office (845-639-3485).