Joan d'Amico of Court Street Merchants Association, who helped organized the event
Former Assemblywoman Joan Millman
Councilmember Brad Lander
State Senator Daniel Squadron
Assemblywoman Jo Anne Simon
New York State Senator Velmanette Montgomery
This year's honoree, Salvatore "Buddy" Scotto
Vince Mazzone, who organizes the Veterans Day ceremony every year
Former Assemblywoman Joan Millman with current Assemblywoman Jo Anne Simon
Dr. Mike Polanski of Court Street Merchant Association
This year's special honoree was life long Carroll Gardens resident and Korean War veteran Salvatore "Buddy" Scotto.
He was introduced by former Assemblywoman Joan Millman, who spoke about Buddy's life and service to country and community.
Below is a bit about Buddy's life:
Since Salvatore was a very popular name for Italian boys – he was one of five Salvatores in the family – his mother took a cue from “My Buddy” sung by Al Jolson and almost immediately began calling him Buddy. While still a student at St. Francis College, Buddy enlisted in the National Guard and was assigned to the 955 Field Artillery Battalion. In January 1950 – with the threat of war in Asia – Platoon Sergeant Scotto’s unit was activated and sent overseas. Within a few months of his arrival in Korea, and based upon his leadership skills, performance and intelligence, Buddy was offered (which he accepted) an opportunity to attend Officers Candidate School. Upon completing his training, Lt. Scotto was transferred to Reykjavik, Iceland at a time when the United States was establishing a military base to aid in defensive and offensive operations in the event of war with Russia and at the same time to monitor Soviet movements in the North Atlantic.
Upon completion of his one year tour of duty in Iceland, Buddy returned to the United States, rejoined the 955 Field Artillery Battalion, and resumed his role in the family business alongside his sister Theresa (Terry). Combining his active status in the United States Army and his reserve status in the National Guard, Salvatore “Buddy” Scotto spent thirteen years in the service of our country…..and many more years after that in the service of our community.
Over the years Scotto Funeral Home became more than just a place where families would seek comfort during moments of sorrow. Thanks to Buddy and his deep commitment to Carroll Gardens, Scotto Funeral Home also became a place where people gathered to share ideas in hope of making our community a better place to live, work and shop. It’s where the seeds took root for the changing of the name of our community from Red Hook to Carroll Gardens. It’s where the Carroll Gardens Association and the Independent Neighborhood Democrats were founded; and where many other community groups and organizations began.
At 87 Buddy has not shown any sign of losing sight of two of his long standing goals – to plant more trees and to clean up the Gowanus Canal.
We honor Salvatore “Buddy” Scotto today both for his service to our country and for his service to our community.