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Governor Larry Hogan Honors WWII Veteran At Peace Cross

Vows to Keep Nearly 100-Year-Old Memorial Honoring Local Veterans Standing

ANNAPOLIS, MD – Governor Larry Hogan today was joined by Secretary of Veterans Affairs George Owings III to honor Second Lieutenant John Robert Pedevillano – a World War II veteran, Prisoner of War, and Purple Heart recipient – with an official governor’s citation recognizing his military service and dedication to Maryland and the United States. The event took place at the Peace Cross monument in Bladensburg, Maryland, which was constructed in 1925 by local families and the American Legion to honor members of the community who fought in World War I.

“Honoring Second Lieutenant Pedevillano and his service to our country is truly a privilege,” said Governor Hogan. “We all owe him a debt of gratitude for his courageous contributions to our nation and our state.”

The Peace Cross, erected on land originally owned by the family of Second Lieutenant Pedevillano’s wife, is the subject of a court case challenging the monument’s constitutionality. Governor Hogan pledged to fight to keep the Peace Cross in place, calling a lower court ruling “an affront to all veterans” and directed the Attorney General to file a brief in support of the monument.

“As a native Prince Georgian, I know how much the Peace Cross means to this community. Our administration is actively fighting the baseless constitutionality claim against this monument to our veterans and has been for many months,” said Governor Hogan. “We are now working with the attorney general to take action at the highest levels in the U.S. Supreme Court by filing an amicus brief on behalf of the State of Maryland. We will see this through and use all means available to keep the Peace Cross fully intact and honoring our veterans for another hundred years.”

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