PATERSON, NJ -- Sunday morning almost three dozen people gave Paterson native Tony Vancheri a surprise he won't forget. 

Members of Vancheri's family, the community, A Hero's Welcome North Jersey, Warriors Watch Riders of New Jersey and Pennsylvania, members of the Paterson Fire Department and Paterson Mayor Andre Sayegh all gathered to honor Vancheri for his service to the United States and his ongoing support of veterans in the city. 

Vancheri served four years during the Vietnam War as a combat medic in the U.S. Army. Born in Belgium, he became a naturalized citizen during the war. He continues to serve veterans as President of the Paterson Veterans Council.

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The group gathered on McBride Avenue, and received an escort from the Paterson Fire Department to surprise Vancheri at Veterans Memorial Park at Hayden Heights. There he was honored and presented a commemorative coin and certificate for his time and service.

"It’s very important to honor and remember all our veterans. Some have sacrificed their lives for us," said Rose Pagan, director of A Hero's Welcome North Jersey. "They deserve our respect and our constant thanks and gratitude."


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