Monday, Secretary Polanowicz and Secretary Nee presented Tom L’Italien with a Governor’s Citation for his outstanding work supporting veterans and raising national awareness on the tragedies facing veterans and their families.
Mr. L’Italien, a Salem native and brother of four Veterans, just completed a bike ride that covered over 2,700 miles to raise awareness on the growing suicide rate of our returning veterans. He began his journey in Flagstaff, Arizona on June 21st and finished his ride in Lynn, Massachusetts this past Sunday.
During his bike ride, Mr. L’Italien traveled through parts of Arizona, New Mexico, Oklahoma, Kansas, Missouri, Illinois, Indiana, Ohio, West Virginia, Pennsylvania, New Jersey, New York, Connecticut, and Massachusetts. With him, he brought 100 pounds worth of provisions and bike parts, as well as special mementos given to him from families affected by suicide. He rode between 50 and 60 miles a day and relied on the kindness of veterans who had heard about his journey for food and shelter. Mr. L’Italien was also supported by his family and the foundation he works for, TeamVeteran.org.
“When my older brother, Al, returned from Vietnam, I saw how the tragedies he experienced impacted and changed his life. Although he never talked about his experiences, we could see a big difference in him. I’m bicycling across the country to bring awareness of our responsibility in this great nation to take better care of our Veterans.”
— Tom L’Italien
Tags: Governor’s Citation
Zakim Goes Green For Mental Health Month posted on May 22
Last year, when Josh Powers saw the Zakim Bridge lit up in blue for autism awareness, he immediately knew what he wanted to do. He wanted to see the bridge lit with green lights to raise awareness around mental health. “I want more people to …Continue Reading Zakim Goes Green For Mental Health Month
Guest Post From Carolyn Graves posted on May 19
Business owner Carolyn Graves, owner of Cakes & Islands, talks about overcoming her physical challenge to realize her sweet dream. I was born deaf. But with the use of hearing aids, I had some hearing. Without them I couldn’t hear anything at all. My parents …Continue Reading Guest Post From Carolyn Graves
DYS Statewide Event Spotlights Youth Success posted on May 14
A common challenge for many adolescents is finding healthy outlets where they can explore their interests in constructive ways. For many youth who come into our care and custody, individual access to healthy outlets can sometimes be a significant challenge. One way the Department of …Continue Reading DYS Statewide Event Spotlights Youth Success