honoring and helping veterans

Veterans ceremony on Memorial Day, 2016 /Photo: Sam Oshlag

Mt. Lebanon municipality and school district are planning a community effort over the next two months to commemorate Veterans Day. A Celebration of Service: Veterans Voices involves the Historical Society of Mount Lebanon, the Denis Theatre and the Veterans Breakfast Club and is a series honoring those who have served and those who continue to serve our country.

On Wednesday, October 19, at 7 p.m., at Mt. Lebanon Library, poet Kathleen Swazuk will read selections from Wartorn Heart, a collection of her poems and art inspired by the Vietnam War. Swazuk was an Army nurse with the 93rd Evacuation Hospital in Vietnam from 1969-1970.

On Thursday, October 27, at 7 p.m., at the library, Elaine Wertheim of the Denis Theatre Foundation will host a viewing and lead a discussion of Paths of Glory, the acclaimed 1957 Stanley Kubrick film that explores the futility and irony of the war in the trenches during World War I. And  on Wednesday, November 2, at 7 p.m., at the library, Wertheim will present The Quiet American, a film adaptation of Graham Greene’s novel about the U.S.’s early involvement in Vietnam.

At 7 p.m., Wednesday, November 9, Veterans Breakfast Club’s Todd DePastino will host Veterans’ Voices in Mt. Lebanon, at Mellon Middle School auditorium. Mt. Lebanon veterans will share their stories, and there will be a slide show of World War II posters obtained from Grove City College.

On Veterans Day, November 11, there will be a service at  the Mt. Lebanon Veterans Memorial. Details will follow in November.


State Rep. Dan Miller and state Sen. Guy Reschenthaler will present Coming Home: Veterans, Community and PTSD, at 7 p.m., Thursday, October 27, at the Mt. Lebanon Municipal Building. Miller and Reschenthaler will discuss ways to address gaps in state services for veterans. The state Veterans Mobile Service Van will be on hand in front of the municipal building from 6 to 8 p.m. to assist accredited veterans and their family members in connecting with needed benefits, such as disability, health care, pension, education, career assistance and more.

2016 Mogadishu Mile. /Photo: Ken Lager
2016 Mogadishu Mile /Photo: Ken Lager

The Mogadishu Mile is getting an infusion of energy this year. The fundraiser, which benefits Steel City Vets, is a 5K Fun Run and Team CrossFit Challenge. The event is at the Jefferson Middle School track on Friday, October 7, at 6 p.m. It commemorates the route run by the United States Army Rangers and Delta Force soldiers from a helicopter crash site to a rally point held by the 10th Mountain Division on National Street during the Battle of Mogadishu on October 4, 1993.

There are two ways to participate: You can run or walk the 5K on the track (fatigues, combat boots and weighted vests are encouraged but not required) or you and three friends can join the CrossFit Mt. Lebanon Team Challenge (advanced registration required). The CrossFit workout will be posted on CrossFit Mt. Lebanon’s Facebook page before the event so you’ll know what to do when you get there.

You can register on event day to run or walk but only participants who sign up online ahead of time will receive shirts.

The Mogadishu Mile is organized by the Mt. Lebanon Fire Department and the Mt. Lebanon Police, in cooperation with CrossFit Mt. Lebanon.

Registration is available at the event.