9 local veterans honored in Voorhees, New Jersey

VOORHEES, N.J. - September 1, 2013

It was a small token to signify a great honor.

Decades after serving our country, nine veterans who live at Yardley Commons Senior Living Community, were recognized with a Camden County Military Service Medal this Labor Day Weekend.

Ray Lavanture, who served in the Marine Corps, says he accepts this award on behalf of all the service men and women who fought for our freedoms.

"I never had to shoot at anybody, never had anybody shoot at me but I have a lot of buddies, who because of their bravery and their steadfastness, I'm here," said Lavanture.

Medal recipient Lorraine Labuzz says she's most honored by the fact that her granddaughters came to support her. Both are ROTC members and plan to follow in their hero's footsteps.

"She was an officer in the Women's Auxillary Army Corp in the 40's which was mostly unheard of at that time," said Lexie Durkin.

"Our grandmother is our role model and our inspiration and it felt great to see her honored for her hard work," said Torie Durkin.

Sunday's medal ceremony corresponds with a final fundraising event at the Holiday Senior Living Community.

All summer-long these facilities across the country have been raising money for Outward Bound, a wilderness retreat program to help veterans adjust to life after deployment.

"Outward Bound Wilderness Retreat helps them to regroup and become better parents, spouses, community citizens," said Frank Falzone.

Through fundraising events like this one all across the country, Holiday Retirement hopes to raise more than a $1 million which can put more than 600 veterans through the Outward Bound program.

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