Rep. Zeldin’s Legislation to Honor Fallen Soldier Army Specialist Thomas Wilwerth of Mastic Passes House
Watch Rep. Zeldin’s remarks ahead of the vote here.
WASHINGTON - Today, the House of Representatives passed H.R. 829, legislation introduced by Congressman Lee Zeldin (R, NY-1) to honor the life and legacy of Army Specialist Thomas J. Wilwerth by renaming in his honor the Post Office in his hometown of Mastic, New York.
Specialist Wilwerth participated in the Junior ROTC program while at William Floyd High School and enlisted in the Army Reserves his junior year at just 17 years old. Deployed in December 2005 as part of Operation Iraqi Freedom, Specialist Wilwerth and two other servicemembers fell in the line of duty on February 22, 2006, when an explosive device detonated near his Bradley Fighting Vehicle while on morning patrol near Balad, Iraq.
“I wish there were more people who possessed such a profound sense of patriotism. Even fewer answer the call at just the age of 17, who sacrifice their entire lives and their entire future to serve in the U.S. military,” said Congressman Lee Zeldin. “Specialist Wilwerth was the best of who we are. He is the embodiment of what makes this country the greatest in the world - the willingness to make the ultimate sacrifice in defense of our exceptional nation. The willingness to lay down one’s life for his neighbors, for his community but most courageously for those Americans he never knew.”
“Tommy died so that his fellow Americans could live a better life,” said the Wilwerth family. “His deep rooted sense of patriotism drove him to enlist in the aftermath of September 11th, and he would have been so proud of his sacrifice on behalf of our entire nation. To have his name and legacy displayed in the heart of the community he loved – the community he laid down his life for – will never bring him home, but it will ensure his memory and sacrifice live on in the hearts of those who call Long Island home.”