The Suffolk County Vanderbilt Museum will thank veterans and active military personnel for their extraordinary service by inviting them as guests on Veterans Weekend, Friday-Sunday, November 10-12. Sponsored by Northwell Health.
As it does each year, the Museum will offer free daytime admission to them and their families. (Veterans’ proof of military service, or active-duty military ID required for complimentary guest admission.)
“The men and women of our armed forces courageously choose to serve and defend our country,” said Executive Director Elizabeth Wayland-Morgan,” and inviting them to be our guests is one way to thank them.”
The Vanderbilt offers this courtesy to active-duty service members and their families as part of its year-round extension of the summer-season national Blue Star Museums program.
The Vanderbilt salutes veterans and active military personnel in honor of the Vanderbilt family’s 132-year participation in U.S. military history – from the War of 1812 through World War II. William K. Vanderbilt II (1878-1944), an accomplished sailor and yachtsman, served in the Navy during World War I and later was a lieutenant commander in the U.S. Naval Reserve.
After the bombing of Pearl Harbor, and the destruction of the U.S. Navy’s Pacific fleet, President Franklin D. Roosevelt sought Vanderbilt’s support to help defend the nation. Vanderbilt gave his 264-foot yacht Alva to the Navy, which converted it to a gunboat, the USS Plymouth. In 1941, the U.S. government had purchased Vanderbilt’s Sikorsky amphibious plane for wartime duty.
(The Plymouth was sunk by a torpedo from a German U-boat on August 4, 1943. Before the war, Vanderbilt moored the Alva near the mansion, in Northport Bay.)