Written by Tab Hauser Wednesday, 02 July 2014 00:00
Approximately 300 U.S. Marines and their marching band visited Glen Cove on Saturday, June 21, to pay tribute to Glen Cove’s most famous soldier, Sergeant Daniel J. Daly, a two-time Medal of Honor winner.
Sgt. Daly lived from 1873 to 1937 and had the distinction of being one of 19 soldiers ever to receive the Medal of Honor twice and also only one of two Marines to receive it twice as well. The first Medal of
Honor was awarded during the Boxer Rebellion in 1900 for what was called the Battle of Peking where he single-handedly fought off 200 attackers. The second Medal of Honor was received for a battle in
Haiti in 1915 where he lead a group of 35 Marines to beat off an ambush of 400 Cacos.
Under a beautiful summer sky with the U.S. Marine band playing patriotic and marching songs, about 500 area residents, mostly from Glen Cove, came to listen to the praise given to its hometown hero. After an introduction by Sgt. Brett Williger on the day’s events, Mayor Reginald Spinello spoke. He introduced Barbara Harcourt, Sgt. Daly’s grand-niece, and spoke of Sgt. Daly’s career in service. He named other
Glen Cove Marines who fought in important battles from WWII to Afghanistan. He then pointed out the enlarged U.S. postal stamps that were dedicated to Medal of Honor winners. These enlarged copies can be seen in the main chambers of City Hall. He thanked all of Glen Cove’s sons and daughters for their service. Another U.S. Marine Sergeant spoke next about the 150-year history of medals. He noted that Sgt. Daly was only 5’6” and weighed only 132 pounds, but had a reputation as a real fighter who won other medals as well.
Harcourt spoke next. She said Daly turned down a promotion, saying he would rather be an “outstanding sergeant than just another officer.” In his service, she said, “He did just a little bit more.”
Congressman Steve Israel presented Harcourt with a U.S. Flag. He said he reads up on military history and spoke of Daly’s service. Of the three notable quotes in military history, he mentioned one of them was from Daly, who said at the age of 44 leading a charge during WWI, “Come on, you sons of bitches, do you want to live forever?” Israel noted this quote points out how tough the man really was.
Harcourt then helped lay a wreath by the plaque paying tribute to Glen Cove’s own. The service concluded with a short parade to the high school where the Inaugural Daniel J. Daly Lacrosse tournament was played.