(Nassau County, NY) - The Museum of American Armor is welcoming a decision by Las Vegas Sands to commit to creating a “Nassau Veterans Memorial” at a cost of no less than $1 million on the grounds of The Hub inside Mitchel Field as part its lease agreement with Nassau County that will direct the future of the former Air Force base now at the epicenter of Nassau County’s economy.
The Armor Museum’s senior trustee Michael Sapraicone, stated, “This decision by the Sands recognizes an historic truth: Returning World War II veterans reinvented Nassau County as a vibrant, dynamic suburban community. In addition, Long Island continues to be home to one of the largest veterans’ populations in the United States. The naming of the Nassau Coliseum in honor of veterans was a decision made in the 1960s to honor their legacy. Today, through the efforts of Nassau County Executive Bruce Blakeman, the Sands is sustaining that commitment with their pledge to create a worthy veterans memorial even if the future of the Nassau Veterans Memorial Coliseum is demolition.”
A mandate from the County Executive
"Any deal concerning the Hub must have a component for a proper memorial to Nassau County's military veterans," stated Nassau County Executive Bruce Blakeman. "That has always been a requirement in any negotiations."
Under its lease agreement with Nassau County the Sands can use the Mitchel Field property for a wide range of purposes that may include a casino, entertainment, medical, residential, and a luxury hotel.
"Las Vegas Sands has a proud history of caring for and honoring our veterans. In Las Vegas we have been strong supporters of the Veterans Village in its role as a housing development for homeless veterans - and we feel privileged to honor our service members here on Long Island with a new memorial alongside our proposal for the Nassau Hub," said Ron Reese, Senior Vice President of Global Communications and Corporate Affairs for Las Vegas Sands.
Honoring the legacy
He observed, "The Nassau Veterans Memorial Coliseum has an important legacy for veterans in Nassau County and throughout Long Island. We look forward to honoring that legacy and the service and sacrifice of all Long Islanders who served in the United States Armed Forces."
Sapraicone concluded, “By the very nature of its charter, The Armor Museum is precluded from offering an opinion on the current debate over the creation of a casino on the grounds of the Hub but we are compelled to acknowledge and thank the County Executive and the Sands for recognizing the role of our veterans. Their legacy is, and will remain, an essential tribute found within the reinvention of the Hub.
Located within the grounds of Old Bethpage Village Restoration, Old Bethpage, New York, the Museum of American Armor uses its 50 operational tanks and armor vehicles to replicate the sights and sounds of American forces during World War II, offering a compelling educational tool in telling the seminal story of American courage, valor and sacrifice. Placing it in this unique setting of vintage farm houses and country roads, it offers a virtual time machine that ensures a powerful history lesson for students, families, and regional, national and international visitors.
Photo caption: Long Island has one of the highest veterans’ populations in the nation who are regularly honored at The Museum of American Armor. The decision by the Las Vegas Sands to create a million dollar veterans memorial on the grounds of The Hub is being hailed by the Armor Museum as “a fitting tribute to those who have not only defended our freedoms but who returned home from World War II to create a vibrant and dynamic Nassau County.”