Special ceremony slated at Inverness post office
Jay Conti Sr.
American Legion Department of Florida
4th District Vice Commander
On Thursday, the U.S. Postal Service will issue "Distinguished Sailors stamps" to honor four sailors who served with bravery and distinction during the 20th century.
They are William S. Sims, Arleigh A. Burke , John McCloy and Doris Miller.
The stamps will be unveiled in a ceremony at the Inverness Post Office at 8:15 a.m. with a ceremony of raising the United States Navy Flag with the American Flag. The ceremony will be conducted between various veterans organizations such as American Legion Post 155, Fleet Reserve Branch 186, VFW Post 4337, DAV Chapter 70, United States Submariners Association, Citrus County Veterans Coalition and other Navy veterans will be in attendance.
"It's not every day that a sailor gets noticed and displayed on a USPS stamp; Thursday, we will have four in one day. This is a big event for all veterans - not just Navy veterans. It's an honor knowing that a fellow veteran is getting noticed in this manner," said Jay Conti Sr., a 21-year Navy veteran who grew up in Citrus County and attended Inverness Primary, Inverness Middle and Citrus high schools.
Vice Admiral William S. Sims served as Commander of U.S. Naval Forces in European waters during World War I. He was an outspoken reformer and innovator who helped shape the Navy into a modern fighting force. After his service, Sims continued to write and lecture about naval reform until his death in 1936, at which time the New York Herald Tribune declared that he had "influenced our naval course more than any man who ever wore the uniform." The Navy has named three destroyers after Vice Admiral Sims. The most recent, USS W. S. Sims (DE-1059), was commissioned in 1970.