A scholarship commemorates a veteran | News, Sports, Jobs
WARREN – Chapter 606 of the Military Order of Purple Hearts, in conjunction with the Mahoning Valley Community Foundation, has established a special scholarship in memory of local veteran Gary Gutelius, who died Feb. 12 on his 74th birthday. .
Herm Breuer, director of the Trumbull County Veterans Services Commission, said the Purple Heart Gary Gutelius Memorial Scholarship Fund was officially launched to remember Gutelius. The scholarship is now worth $40,000.
“Gary was part of many veterans organizations, but he always had a soft spot for Purple Heart organizations,” Breuer said.
Leo Connelly Jr. of Boardman, a member of Chapter 606 of the Military Order of the Purple Hearts, came up with the idea of having a scholarship. “Gary was very excited about a scholarship and we want to name it in his memory,” Breuer said.
The scholarship will be given to the children, stepchildren, or grandchildren of a Purple Heart recipient who are attending college in Ohio or taking any other training or apprenticeship program for various career preparations. Breuer said details of the scholarship amounts were still being decided.
“We are here to help people. The only requirement Chapter 606 is going to ask is that the person finish what they are doing. We want to help individuals throughout their journey. Not everyone goes to college, which is very understandable. said Connelly.
He said that Gutelius was “probably the sweetest guy you would ever want to know.”
“He was the type of guy who would do what needed to be done and wouldn’t tell anyone he did it. He would automatically do something and he loved people. When he was in pain, he made you smile. said Connelly.
Breuer said Gutelius would dress up as the Easter Bunny at VFW, which made him special for kids.
He said the Community Foundation of the Mahoning Valley is helping financially for the scholarship. The foundation will manage the fund and help veterans review scholarship applicants.
Rachael Chacon, director of development and marketing for the foundation, said she often works with an organization or charity to set up scholarships and funds.
Gutelius was drafted into the US Army in 1967 and served with the 101st Airborne Division during the Vietnam War. He was wounded in the Battle of Hamburger Hill, a 10-day battle fought during the three-phase Operation Apache Snow, which was a campaign to destroy North Vietnamese army bases in the Valley of ‘To Shau. He received a Purple Heart and a Bronze Star for his service.
Gutelius belonged to many veterans organizations including as a life member of: DAV Chapter 11, the VFW Post 1090, the Military Order of the Purple Heart Chapter 606, where he served as Senior Vice Commander, the Vietnam Veterans of America, the American Legion Post 540 and Amvets Post 290.
Gutelius led the Veterans Day and Memorial Day committees for Trumbull County, as well as organized volunteers each year to decorate veterans’ graves for Memorial Day. In 2018, he had the honor of laying a wreath at the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier at Arlington National Cemetery on the 100th anniversary of Veterans Day.