SURPRISE, ARIZ., Nov. 23, 2016 – Retired Army Lt. Col. Tony Saputo cut a distinguished figure in his blue, gold-braided dress pants and navy-blue blazer adorned with medals and ribbons earned over his 30-year career in the military.

Hundreds turned out for the Pre-Veterans Day celebration at Grandview Terrace.

Hundreds turned out for the Pre-Veterans Day celebration at Grandview Terrace.

Saputo was delivering remarks to a large audience gathered at Grandview Terrace in Sun City West for a Pre-Veterans Day celebration. The party, held Nov. 9, was organized by Sun Health Senior Living (SHSL), which owns three senior living Life Care communities in the West Valley, including Grandview Terrace. Hundreds of veterans live in these communities.

“We wanted to pay tribute to all veterans in the area who served and gave their lives for our country,” said Jackie Lusson, director of Corporate Sales for SHSL and chair of the planning committee for the event.

More than 450 attendees from SHSL and surrounding communities were treated to hors d’oeuvres, refreshments, a USO-type variety show, patriotic music played by the Desert Brass Band and horse-drawn carriage rides. In addition, two lucky couples’ names were drawn for a Washington D.C., vacation package.

The opening ceremony included the presentation of colors by the Cactus High School Color Guard, the Pledge of Allegiance and the singing of the Star Spangled Banner. It was followed by remarks from Lt. Col. Saputo and retired Marine Corp pilot, Maj. Richard Acott, a resident of The Colonnade.

In his remarks, Saputo downplayed his own military experiences, focusing on the valor of other veterans in the audience, especially his veteran neighbors at Grandview Terrace where he has lived with his wife Rosemary for the past 14 years.

“I can’t walk around here without bumping into heroes,” said Saputo who served during three wars: WWII, the Korean War and the Vietnam War. He also is an inductee in the Arizona Veterans Hall of Fame Society.

More photos from the event.

About Sun Health

A longstanding champion of healthy living and superior health care, Sun Health is a community-based non-profit providing pathways to population health through philanthropy, senior living programs and communities, and community wellness programs and services. Sun Health Senior Living includes three independent-living Life Care communities (Grandview Terrace in Sun City West, La Loma Village in Litchfield Park and The Colonnade in Sun City Grand/Surprise) and Sun Health at Home, the first “continuing care at home” program in the Southwest. Learn more at www.sunhealth.org  and www.sunhealthseniorliving.org.

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