By Jessica BerardinoBy Rob Pratte

PITTSBURGH (NewsRadio 1020 KDKA) – On May 24, 2013, President Barack Obama declared May 27 as Memorial Day. He was quoted in an American Forces Press Release as commenting that this is, “a day of prayer for permanent peace.”

He specified the 11 a.m. hour in each location, as a time to unite in prayer as a country. He concluded that all Americans will observe the National Moment of Remembrance beginning at 3 p.m. local time.

In honor of all those who have fought for our country and fallen, Congress declared a joint resolution on May 11, 1950, that all Americans will observe Memorial Day as proclaimed by the president as a day of prayer and peace. The president adds that the flag should fly at half staff until 2 p.m.

Rob Pratte has been influenced by many honorable military heroes in this city and today is when he can give them they’re proper thanks.

Tony Accamando Jr., an army lieutenant in Vietnam, and his old friend George D’Angelo, an Air Force captain and pilot in Vietnam, returned to Vietnam 30 years after serving to see a country at peace instead of at war. They walked by a dilapidated school building that was crumbling around it’s student’s and thought to themselves we need to do something.

After returning to the United States they contacted the Vietnamese Children’s Fund and in one year raised $50,000. Then, in 1999, they built their first school and realized how much they enjoyed giving back to this country.

“That’s what veteran’s do, they give of themselves,” said Accamando. “They put others before themselves.”

Accamando says that Memorial Day drives home the importance of how today is the most solemn of days when our country recognizes those who have fallen.

“We all should believe and feel that we’re in the presence of the honored dead who have given so much for this great country,” said Accamando.

The President of the Allegheny County Labor Council, Jack Shea, really tries to allow veterans equal opportunities for jobs when they come home from service. However, he is aware that in today’s world, everyone is struggling for a job.

“Helmets to Hard Hats” is a program the council has in place to assist veterans obtain jobs in the construction industry.

Today he’s all about family and honoring the currently, under construction World War II monument in the North Shore.

He describes how before World War II there was no middle class, but when the service men and women came home, they wanted a better life for themselves.

“Today we need to thank the veterans for the lifestyle we have today,” said Shea.

Lawyer David Trautman is the founder and principal of Trautman & Associates LLC, but he’s also a Colonel in the United States Army. He currently serves in the U.S. Army Reserves and is the Commander of the 154th Trial Defense Service.

Colonel Trautman explains how wonderful the Wounded Warrior Project is for those returning home and trying to live their life again. He has visited many hospitals and is still shocked by some of the dramatic injuries the patients have. But, he says that there is not better feeling then seeing a wounded solider becoming a contributing member of society.

“Wounded Warriors is our country’s way of saying thank you and helping our folks who come back wounded from combat,” said Trautman. “There’s no greater service than public service.”

Rob Pratte is live weekends 5 a.m. to 9 a.m. only on NewsRadio 1020 KDKA!

More From CBS Pittsburgh

Get The All New CBS Local App
KDKA Weather App

Watch & Listen LIVE