The Tribune Democrat, Johnstown, PA

Latest News

May 17, 2014

WWII heroes to be honored

JOHNSTOWN — Two decorated heroes of World War II will be honored and Korean War veterans in general will be recognized at the third annual WWII Honors Ceremony of Richland American Legion Post 849.

The event will be held at 2 p.m. June 8 at a dinner in the AmSlo Club at 85 Lenhart St. in Old Conemaugh Borough.

The honorees – Navy veteran Joseph Donna, 91, and Army veteran John Komis, 94 – both reside in Richland Township.

The ceremonies were moved from the Richland post home to the AmSlo Club to accommodate the growing attendance, post Commander Robert Statler said.

Donna enlisted in the Navy in 1942, when he was 19. After boot camp, he was assigned to the Suwannee, a carrier escort ship. He took part in the invasion of North Africa, and in his first battle action, the crew sank a German submarine.

Donna also recalls firing at Japanese planes in the Pacific.

“They were trying to bomb us, and we were trying to shoot them down,” he said. “I never knew how many I shot down.”

Donna was awarded a Purple Heart for wounds suffered on his first air battle day. He also received 14 battle stars, nine ribbons and two presidential citations. His ship was hit twice and became one of the most decorated ships in World War II, Donna recalled.

Komis, who held the rank of staff sergeant, was awarded the Bronze Star and Purple Heart for action against enemy forces. He was cited for his leadership of a patrol that ambushed a German force.

He also earned the Combat Infantry Badge and WWII Army Occupation and campaign ribbons for action in Europe, Africa and the Middle East and was awarded the World War II Badge for efficiency, fidelity and honor.

In citing Korean War veterans, Statler said, “The time has come to recognize them. Due to aging there are fewer and fewer World War II veterans surviving.

“Starting next year, we will honor individual Korean vets. We are indeed very proud of their service to our country.”

1
Text Only | Photo Reprints
Latest News
  • naacp1 VIDEO | NAACP honors Heritage Leaders

    Bertha Hill of downtown Johnstown was in her late 30s when Martin Luther King Jr. was assassinated. From her birth and throughout her formative years, Jim Crow laws were in effect, barring her and other African-American citizens from becoming equal members of U.S. society.
    She now lives in a drastically different world.

    July 27, 2014 2 Photos

  • WWI mon28 100th anniversary of World War I

    No American veterans are still alive to provide firsthand accounts of the brutality and heroism displayed during World War I.

    July 27, 2014 4 Photos

  • coal1 Exporting pollution: U.S. energy producers sending dirty coal abroad

    As the Obama administration weans the U.S. off dirty fuels blamed for global warming, energy companies have been sending more of America’s unwanted energy leftovers to other parts of the world where they could create even more pollution.

    July 27, 2014 3 Photos

  • Rising costs for pensions keep schools struggling

    Gov. Tom Corbett is ratcheting up pressure on the Legislature to reform the state’s pension system by focusing on how often school districts use tax increases to offset costs.

    July 27, 2014

  • camp cadet Recruits put through paces at Camp Cadet

    A row of young teens stood tall and attentive Sunday as their instructor paced past, barking out marching orders.

    July 27, 2014 2 Photos

  • Luksik, Peg Independent hopefuls may widen gubernatorial field

    Just when Pennsylvania voters were getting used to the idea of a gubernatorial election showdown between Republican incumbent Tom Corbett and Democratic challenger Tom Wolf, other hopefuls may soon be joining the fray. Johnstown resident Peg Luksik, who twice ran for governor as the Constitutional Party nominee, knows what it's like.

    July 27, 2014 1 Photo

  • Storm sparks reports of lightning strikes

    A fast-moving rainstorm generated reports of lightning strikes throughout parts of southern Cambria County early Sunday evening.

    July 27, 2014

  • pow28 Mount Olive church members reach out to those in need

    The members of Mount Olive United Methodist Church mark their faith by using a tape measure.
    The mission team of the Sidman area church uses tools such as tape measures to complete construction and repair projects to improve life for people in need and to help nonprofit organizations.

    July 27, 2014 1 Photo

  • Kernville Reunion will recall days gone by

    The 37th annual Kernville Reunion will start at noon Aug. 9 at Lorain Borough Park, 503 Green Valley St., and organizers are hopeful it’ll attract current and former area residents, especially people who attended Joseph Johns Junior High School.

    July 27, 2014

  • Scaife remembered for strong convictions

    At a weekend memorial service, publisher Richard Mellon Scaife was remembered by the archbishop of Washington as someone who had the courage to stand “for things that mattered.”

    July 27, 2014

Poll

What is the biggest key to reducing gun violence in Johnstown?

Tackling the area's drug problem.
Controlling folks moving into city housing.
Monitoring folks in treatment centers and halfway houses.
Tougher sentencing by the court system.
More police on the streets.

     View Results
Order Photos


Photo Slideshow

House Ads