Brooke County Memorial Park Foundation Announces William Chiodo Veteran of the Year

Photo by Taryn Linder The Brooke County Veterans Memorial Park Foundation recognized William Chiodo as Veteran of the Year. Pictured are Chiodo, sitting, and, standing from left, Lisa Chiodo, daughter; Sharon Crabtree, member; Donna Taibi, member; Sally Cassandra, member; Katy O’Connell, member; Nancy Strope, vice president; Janice McFadden, president; Rachel English, member, and in back, Matt McFadden, treasurer. — Taryn Linder.

WELLSBURG — Every year, leaders of the Brooke County Veterans Memorial Park Foundation recognize local veterans for their service to their country and community.

“We (the foundation) choose veterans based on what they do both during and after war,” said Foundation President Janice McFadden.

This year, William Chiodo was given the honor of Veteran of the Year.

“I am very surprised and honored,” said Chiodo.

Chiodo is a World War II Navy Veteran, serving from 1944-46. He performed various duties, from serving as watchman on a gun turret to maintaining the ship’s gear locker and library, while aboard the USS Medusa, a ship charged with repairing ships damaged in battle. USS Medusa’s missions included supporting aircraft carriers that attacked the enemy from the Sea of Japan.

Chiodo’s roots are in Follansbee where he was born and raised. He is a lifelong member of St. Anthony Church and is also a member of the Veterans of Foreign Wars, American Legion, and Knights of Columbus.

Follansbee City Manager John Destefano said he has known Chiodo all his life.

“Mr. Chiodo is the guy you think of when you think of a veteran,” Destefano said.

In 2018, Follansbee hung banners featuring the photos of 68 veterans from street lights and telephone poles along state Route 2, which is Follansbee’s Main Street.

“When he (Chiodo) got his banner, he and his family were very touched,” said Destefano. “You just knew it was very important to him, and to all the veterans.”

Chiodo’s father and brother were also servicemen.

His father, Pietro, served during World War I, and his brother, Vincent, served during the Korean War.

The foundation’s 11th annual Veteran of the Year Dinner and Dance will be held Saturday at the Wellsburg Banquet Hall.

“We encourage anyone interested in coming to please contact Brooke Hills Park,” said McFadden.

Tickets are $30 per person and all proceeds go towards the Brooke County Veterans Memorial Park Foundation.

Doors open at 5 p.m., followed by a dinner at 6 p.m., and entertainment from 40-Plus from 9 p.m. to midnight.

For more information, call (304) 737-1236.

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