Sunday, May 03, 2015


Mariano Rivera among 2015 Ellis Island Medal of Honor recipients

5/3/15, "Mariano Rivera to receive Ellis Island Medal of Honor," Yankees Lohud blog, Chad Jennings

"Two years ago, we all got used to Mariano Rivera receiving a steady dose of gifts and honors as he wrapped up his playing career. But the honors haven’t stopped in retirement. Next weekend, Rivera will receive the Ellis Island Medal of Honor. Here are the details as passed along by the National Ethnic Coalition of Organizations." [Generic link, doesn't go to specific article at NECO which I couldn't find. This is their list of 2015 honorees. Susan]

[NEW YORK, NY] "On Saturday, May 9, 2015, New York Yankees Legend Mariano Rivera will be among the ninety honorees who will receive the Ellis Island Medal of Honor from the National Ethnic Coalition of Organizations-NECO. The list of honorees will include: TV host, Meredith Vieira, U.S. Representative Ted Poe (R-TX), twelve members of the U.S. Military and Washington, D.C. Police Chief Cathy L. Lanier.

The 29th Annual Ellis Island Medal of Honor Ceremony will be held on Ellis Island at 6:30 p.m. The Ceremony will be followed by a Gala Dinner in the historic Great Hall. Emmy-winning Senior Correspondent Marvin Scott and fellow Emmy-winning Nightly News anchor Tamsen Fadal, both of WPIX-11, will be the Masters of Ceremony.

Mariano Rivera was born in Panama City, Panama. He signed with the Yankees in Panama in 1990 and made his debut in the major leagues in 1995. Rivera is now actively involved in the community and plans to dedicate his retirement years serving the community through his organization, the Mariano Rivera Foundation, which provides health clinics for children and finances to underprivileged students who demonstrate determination and show bright futures through its Annual Incentive Scholarship Program. He played as a starting pitcher and was converted to a relief pitcher late in his rookie year. As a reliever, he was a key contributor to the Yankees’ success in the late 1990’s and early 2000’s. He was named the 1999 World Series MVP and the 2003 AL Championship Series MVP. Rivera holds several postseason records, including lowest earned run average and most saves. In 2013, the Yankees retired his uniform number 42. Rivera was the last major league player to wear the number full-time.

Nasser J. Kazeminy, Chairman of NECO, states, “NECO seeks to inspire America to embrace diversity, tolerance and respect for all of its citizens by celebrating those who have given so much of themselves to the betterment of our nation and our world. Each of these honorees represents traits that I admire in great Americans: the vision of a better world for all, the tenacity to overcome challenges, and the leadership and imagination to blaze their own trail. And most importantly, they have the humility and self-reflection to appreciate the amazing opportunities that America has given them.

They inspire me and we honor them so they can inspire others as well.”

The Ellis Island Medals of Honor embody the spirit of America in their celebration of patriotism, tolerance, brotherhood and diversity. The Medal recognizes individuals who have made it their mission to share with those less fortunate their wealth of knowledge, indomitable courage, boundless compassion, unique talents and selfless generosity; all while maintaining the traditions of their ethnic heritage as they uphold the ideals and spirit of America.

As always, NECO remains dedicated to the maintenance and restoration of America’s greatest symbol of its immigrant history, Ellis Island. Since the Medal was founded in 1986, NECO has honored such distinguished and diverse Americans including: six Presidents of the United States; Nobel Prize recipient Elie Wiesel, Generals Norman Schwarzkopf and Colin Powell, Hon. Hillary Clinton, Sen. John McCain, Muhammad Ali, Frank Sinatra, Barbara Walters, Mike Wallace, Quincy Jones and Mia Farrow, all who have distinguished themselves through their significant contributions to this country.

The Ellis Island Medal of Honor ranks among the nation’s most prestigious awards. The U.S. Senate and House of Representatives have officially recognized the Ellis Island Medals of Honor, and each year the recipients are listed in the Congressional Record.

A complete list of Medal recipients can be found on our website,"

Image from Associated Press undated


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