American veterans from World War II to the present were honored Wednesday night, July 11, during a fundraiser for The Friends of Fisher House at Taboo Restaurant in Palm Beach. The event drew over 400 people and raised over $10,000.
Honored guests included Joseph Dryer, one of the few remaining survivors of the attack on Iwo Jima; Daniel Baer, who served in World War II; Rodman Steele, a Vietnam Vet, Desmond Price, who was deployed five times and recently returned from Iraq and Afghanistan, and Ted Task and Frank Hogan, who both served as US Marines during the Korean War.
Craig Dickmann and Matt deFalco from Hamilton Jewelers presented a special gift to each of the honored veterans for their service and several Palm Beach boutiques helped sponsor the event with raffle items. Juicy Couture and Sequin Boutique extended their hours to co-host the event, offering their venue for the Black River Caviar reception and impressive Chinese Auction. Christofle presented the hard-working volunteers with beautiful sterling silver bookmarks engraved with the American Flag. Included in the Chinese Auction were Village Camps in Switzerland and a Golf Foursome at the Ritz Carlton Club in Jupiter. Participating Palm Beach organizations and boutiques included: Hamilton Jewelers, The Breakers, Stubbs & Wootton, Christofle, Daniella Ortiz, Key Leaf, Emilio Pucci, Badgley Mischka, Daniella Ortiz, Tito Vodka, Island Company.
Other notables attending included: Congressional Candidate Lois Frankel, South Florida builder/developer/promoter Michael Capponi; President/CEO of Douglas Elliman, Florida, Vanessa Grout; American Le Mans race car driver Jay Cochran and son Rafe Cochran; Food Network Reality Show Personality Josh Lyons, Production and Event Maestro, Bruce Sutka, Television Personality Robert Riva, CBS Technical Correspondent Herb Tabin, HGTV Design Star Celebrity Miera Melba, and Former MGM Actress / Vietnam Radio Personality for troops ChrisNoel.
Local movers and shakers included: Philip Nicozisis, Brad Deflin, Carlos Morrison, Lucia Bonavita, Maribel Alvarez, Jim Pappas, Arvo Katajisto, Jeff Koons, Leslie Linder, Ashley McKintosh, Andres Fanjul, Daniel Jennings, Candice Jorritsma, Avery Dimmig, Adam Lipson, Alexis Posada, Pamela Tombari, Marrisa Pepper, Reid Boren, Ronnie and Jennie Hasozbek-Garcia, Diane Weiss,and Diana and Rich Horowitz. The Fisher House program is a unique private-public partnership that supports America’s service men and women in their time of greatest need. Families do not pay to stay at Fisher Houses, which serve as a “home away from home” for them while their loved ones are receiving medical care at major military and VA medical centers.
The program was the brainchild of New York real estate developer and philanthropist Zachary Fisher and his wife Elizabeth who opened the first “Zachary and Elizabeth Fisher House” at the National Naval Medical Center Bethesda, Maryland on 24 June 1990. There are now over 50 Fisher Houses throughout the United States, and the program is growing every year in response to the needs of veterans and their families. More than 183,000 days of lodging are provided by Fisher Houses every year.