NEW CITY – County Executive Ed Day and Director Susan Branam of the Rockland County Veterans Service Agency recognized two local veterans for their outstanding service during a special ceremony at the Rockland County Fire Training Center on Thursday, February 16.
The 2023 Buffalo Soldiers Award was presented to Staff Sgt. Sherlie Louis and Army Veteran Lee Edward Burns, Sr.
A “Buffalo Soldier” is the nickname first given to members of African American cavalry regiments of the U.S. Army who served in the western United States from 1867 to 1896, noted for their courage and discipline. The Buffalo Soldiers Award is presented annually to outstanding African American veterans who reside in Rockland County.
“It takes a certain kind of person to place your own life on hold to put your country first but both awardees did it without hesitation,” said County Executive Ed Day. “There’s no question, the freedoms we enjoy today would not be possible without the men and women who make the brave choice to serve our nation, including these local heroes, and it is my pleasure to recognize their courage.”
Staff Sgt. Sherlie Louis is an Aerospace Medical Services Craftsman in the 109th Medical Group of the Air National Guard. SSgt. Louis joined the Air Force in 2012 to make a difference and give back to her community and her country. As she serves, she is also working towards becoming a registered nurse to continue that pledge to her family, friends, and neighbors.
Army Veteran Lee Edward Burns, Sr. served in the Army from 1962-1965. After completing his service in the Army, he then joined the New York State Army National Guard where he worked for over 30 years.
On top of the brave choice to help our nation, Burns dedicated his life to serving his community through his local church as an associate minister for nearly 40 years. He is also a member of the Rockland County Minister’s Alliance and Baptist Ministers’ Evening Conference of Greater New York.
“We thank these individuals for their bravery and continued commitment to our residents. We are proud to list your name among the proud African American men and women who have been named to the Rockland County Buffalo Soldiers in years past,” concluded County Executive Day.