Awarding of the Congressional Medal of Honor to Sergeant Gary B. Beikirch by President Richard M. Nixon
The Congressional Medal of Honor being awarded to Sgt. Gary B. Beikirch of Greece, New York on 01 April 1970 by President Richard M. Nixon. Sergeant Beikirch was awarded the Medal of Honor for "conspicuous gallantry and intrepidity in action at the risk of his life above and beyond the call of duty. Sgt. Beikirch, medical aidman, Detachment B-24, Company B, distinguished himself during the defense of Camp Dak Seang. The allied defenders suffered a number of casualties as a result of an intense, devastating attack launched by the enemy from well-concealed positions surrounding the camp. Sgt. Beikirch, with complete disregard for his personal safety, moved unhesitatingly through the withering enemy fire to his fallen comrades, applied first aid to their wounds and assisted them to the medical-aid station. When informed that a seriously injured American officer was lying in an exposed position, Sgt. Beikirch ran immediately through the hail of fire. Although he was wounded seriously by fragments from an exploding enemy mortar shell, Sgt. Beikirch carried the officer to a medical aid station. Ignoring his own serious injuries, Sgt. Beikirch left the relative safety of the medical bunker to search for and evacuate other men who had been injured. He was again wounded as he dragged a critically injured Vietnamese soldier to the medical bunker while simultaneously applying mouth-to-mouth resuscitation to sustain his life. Sgt. Beikirch again refused treatment and continued his search for other casualties until he collapsed. Only then did he permit himself to be treated. Sgt. Beikirch's complete devotion to the welfare of his comrades, at the risk of his life, are in keeping with the highest traditions of the military service and reflect great credit on him, his unit, and the U.S. Army."
Ontario Beach Park in 1905. Located in the Village of Charlotte, which was part of the Town of Greece until 1916, Ontario Beach Park featured many rides and attractions as well as summer food options. Park attendance and popularity declined as the 1900's unfolded. The arrival of the automobile, several destructive fires and Prohibition all played a role in its demise. Around 1920, the City of Rochester acquired the land, razed the deteriorating structures and began plans to convert it into a city park.
Two massive man made ponds at Yates-Thayer Farm, 1900's. The house on the farm was built in 1902 by the President of the Buffalo, Rochester and Pittsburgh Railroad Company, Arthur Yates. Located on Latta Road, Mr. Yates built the ponds for an ice harvesting company run by his son, Fredrick. The ice harvesting season only lasted a few months and the extracted cubes could weight several hundred pounds. With the arrival of in house ice units in the 1920's, the ice harvesting industry was no longer profitable. The property sold to the Thayer family in 1914 and kept for nearly eighty years. Housing developments now occupy the land where the ponds once existed.
Greece Arcadia High School located at 120 Island Cottage Road, 1968. Built in 1962 at a cost of around $3 million, the building has gone through many renovations over the years and continues to serve residents of Greece. It opened to students in September, 1963. Over a ten year period around this time, Greece built over nine schools. The Mother of Sorrows Church can be seen in the background on the right side of the photo.
Greece No. 9 School located on the east side of Long Pond Road just north of Maiden Lane. It served as a school for over fifty years until 1914, after which the two room schoolhouse was abandoned. It was sold at auction in 1949 as the school district underwent consolidation. The structure is now a residence.
The Manchester Hotel was located on the southeast corner of Ridge and Manitou Roads. By 1916, it was known as The Winslow Hotel and was the site of a catastrophic acetylene gas explosion. Newspaper reports state that the force of the explosion was felt a mile away. In the 1910's, owner O.M. Winslow hosted fox and coon chases, clam bakes and auctions at the hotel. This is how the hotel appeared in the 1880's.
The German Village located in Ontario Beach Park in the early 1900's. The German Village was one of many features at the amusement park, which included a scenic rail ride and rollercoaster. It was located on the east promenade of the park. Known as the "Coney Island of Western New York," the park also featured popular attractions like the Fighting Flames firefighter re-enactment and the Virginia Reel spinning ride. The park began to decline following several catastrophic fires, the arrival of the automobile and Prohibition, among other things.
The Kenmore Hotel was located on the corner of Lake Avenue and Latta Road in Charlotte. It was built in the mid 1800's. It offered furnished rooms for rent and boasted a dance orchestra, banquet facilities and outdoor sports. It suffered a horrific fire in 1943.
Ontario Beach Park in Charlotte looking east, late 1800's. Considered the "Coney Island of Western New York," the amusement park included an extensive boardwalk, ethnic villages, bath houses, and variety shows. Bostock's Animal Show facility is seen on the right and the Scenic Railway platform in the distance on the left. Aerial performers, carnival games and live music were also featured at the park. It reached its hey-day in the late 1800's. The arrival of the automobile, several destructive fires and Prohibition all played a role in its demise. Around 1920, the City of Rochester acquired the land, razed the deteriorating structures and began plans to convert it into a city park.
Town of Greece Parks and Recreation Commissioner Basil A. Marella, 1917-1994. Mr. Marella served as the Town of Greece Parks and Recreation Commissioner for thirty two years. The formerly named English Road park was renamed Basil A. Marella Park in 1995 in his honor. Under his stewardship, he led the development and building of twelve Greece town parks from 1960-1992. Of special pride was the one hundred and two acre park on English Road that now bears his name.
The North Greece Railroad station, located on the northeast side of North Greece Road and was part of the "Hojack Line." For a considerable length of time, it serviced the Rome, Watertown, Ogdensburg Rail Road (R.W. & O.) line. The last train to pass through the station was in 1978.
Naum Bros store was located at 2373 West Ridge Road and founded by Robert Naum in the 1950's. It sold sporting goods, appliances, lawn equipment and more. They had several locations in the Rochester area. It ceased to exist sometime in the 1980's. Pictured here in 1956.
Aerial view of Ridgeway Avenue and Long Pond Road looking northeast, toward the Erie Canal, 1977.
Front view of Greece Baptist Church, located on the northeast corner of Ridge and Long Pond Roads, 1955. Fred Dean was the pastor in 1955.
Red & White Food Stores Plaza at the corner of Ridge & Long Pond Roads, 1950's. Red & White Food Stores was a national chain that started in the 1920's and by the 1950's, had over one thousand stores in Pennsylvania, New York and Ohio. An advertisement for Craft and Clarke's Red & White Food store at this time shows butter was $.67 a pound and cigarette's were $1.67 a carton, The Ridge and Long Pond Road store building is now Heritage Jewelers (2020)