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American International College to Honor Veterans at Ceremony Today

SPRINGFIELD — LTC Jonas Patruno, who serves as a Medical Service Corps officer and Army aviator at Barnes Air National Guard Base, will be the keynote speaker at American International College’s (AIC) annual Veterans Day ceremony today, Nov. 10 at 11 a.m. in the Schwartz Campus Center Auditorium. The public is welcome to attend.

An AIC tradition, the Veterans Day ceremony is dedicated to remembering and honoring those men and women who have served their country. AIC’s multi-generational Alumni Veterans Committee sponsors the annual event and is comprised of alumni spanning more than 50 years.

Patruno’s nearly 30-year military career began as an active-duty enlisted soldier in 1989. He is presently assigned as deputy commander of the Massachusetts Medical Command. His three combat deployments include Operation Desert Storm in 1991, Operation Iraqi Freedom in 2005 as a medevac helicopter pilot, and Operations officer of the Aviation Task Force – Kuwait in 2010.

Patruno holds bachelor’s and master’s degrees from UMass and is a graduate of the Army Command and General Staff Course. His awards and decorations include the Bronze Star Medal, the Air Medal, and the Senior Army Aviator Badge.

Freshman English students submit patriotic essays in advance of the event. The authors of the top three essays, which are selected by a committee, receive gift certificates to the college bookstore. Winning submissions are announced at the event, and the first-place entry is read during the ceremony.

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