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Nick S., 86, Corapolis, PA

Nick Steri, a World War II veteran, recently had his wish to reunite with his former shipmate, Jack Collins, granted.  Steri, now 86, was only 17 when he enlisted in the Navy as a yeoman in February of 1944. Four short months later, he was stationed as a gunner aboard the LSM-32, an amphibious ship, headed for combat in the Pacific theater. After taking part in the Battle of Leyte Gulf, the largest naval battle in WWII, the LSM-32 headed to Okinawa. On Sunday, April 1, 1945, Steri was behind a 20mm cannon during the invasion of Okinawa where he engaged and shot down a Japanese kamikaze plane. During the Battle of Okinawa, Steri was injured, hit in the leg by shrapnel while he was shooting at enemy planes. For his bravery and service, Steri received the Bronze Star, The WWII Victory Medal, the American Campaign Medal and the Asiatic-Pacific Campaign Medal. His wish to spend time with his only surviving shipmate and friend, Jack Collins, who is in failing health, was granted when Steri traveled from the Pittsburgh area to Binghamton, New York on August 9th.  The two men had a wonderful time together! Pictured: TWF volunteer Lisa Dalena with Nick before he left Pittsburgh.  Click here to read the article in the Binghamton Press & Sun Bulletin.

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