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Commander Paul Gerecke To Discuss Sag Harborís Involvement In WWI During "Fridays On The Porch"

Kristen Catalano

Sag Harbor Main Street-Victory Parade WWI-1918 Local doughboys - Jack Young's Collection.

This year marks the 100th anniversary of the American military entering World War I. On Friday, August 11, the Sag Harbor Historical Society will explore some of the effects that the war had on the Village of Sag Harbor and its surrounding areas during its next Fridays on the Porch with CDR Paul Gerecke USCG retired, who will also present an overview of the war.

"Commander Paul Gerecke is native to Sag Harbor and with an impressive career in the Coast Guard, will share his extensive knowledge about WWI," Nancy Remkus of the Sag Harbor Historical Society explained. "It has been 100 years since our involvement in WWI in which 117,000 'doughboys' were lost. Sag Harbor was directly involved in this war and Commander Gerecke will let us know how." During Fridays on the Porch, a small assortment of artifacts will also be on display.

Commander Gerecke is the son of the late CDR Thomas F. Gerecke, USN and Lorraine H. Gerecke. He served over 30 years in the U.S. Coast Guard from 1983 to 2013. Commander Gerecke served as a Supervisor of the Coast Guard's Battery Park facility from 2001 to 2005 and helped to coordinate the waterborne evacuation of approximately 600,000 people from Lower Manhattan in the 24 hours following the 9/11 attacks.

Commander Gerecke holds a Bachelor of Arts degree from Thomas Edison State University and his military decorations include the Meritorious Service Medal with Operational Distinguishing, the Coast Guard Commendation Medal, Navy and Marine Corps Commendation Medal, Department of Transportation 9/11 Service Medal, Coast Guard Achievement Medal, Navy and Marine Corps Achievement Medal, Commandants's Letter of Commendation with Operational Distinguishing Device and over 30 unit and campaign/service awards. Additionally, Commander Gerecke holds what is believed to be the largest collection of orders, decorations and medals to the Royal Marines outside of the United Kingdom.

"Fridays on the Porch at the Sag Harbor Historical Society's Annie Cooper Boyd House continue to be intimate community gatherings with lively conversations," added Remkus. "The Historical Society's mission to keep the history of Sag Harbor alive and well is evidenced at each of these free events."

Fridays on the Porch with CDR Paul Gerecke USCG retired will be held from 5 to 6:30 p.m. at the Annie Cooper Boyd House in Sag Harbor.

Admission to this event is free. Refreshments will be served and all are invited to attend!

The Annie Cooper Boyd House is located at 174 Main Street in Sag Harbor. For more information call 631-725-5092 or visit www.sagharborhistorical.org.

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