They came to honor a friend and comrade in arms as he approaches his milestone birthday, which is still a few months away, but honor him they would.
The Reserve Officers Association (ROA) of Naples/Marco Island held an unscheduled luncheon to pay tribute to one of their own. A man who had given 40 years of his life to his nation as a member of the U.S. Army, either in active duty or in Reserve service. In 1979 at the age of 60 he would be able to add RET. after his name, at least from the military.
Marco Island Fire Chief Mike Murphy and Interim City Manager Gil Polanco attended the event in Herb Savage’s honor and were guests at his table.
Marco Islander Don Reed, a member of the Gyro Club of Naples, was the guest speaker and spoke of Savage’s long commitment to Marco Island. Reed took some humorous liberties with Savage’s naming of some of the roadways within in the community.
Although Savage will actually turn 100 in January of 2019, that did not deter the gathering of fellow retired military officers from honoring him and his wife Emily for his service to both his nation and that of the organization.
Bob Sanchez, President of the Reserve Officers Association of Naples, praised Savage’s commitment to the organization and thanked him for his long service to the nation. He presented Savage with a plaque to honor his support of their group.
Longtime Marco Island supporter Mike Ward, the proprietor of Erin’s Isle Restaurant, located at the Hibiscus Golf Club on Rattlesnake Hammock Road, hosted the luncheon event, which came complete with an ice cream birthday cake for all to enjoy.
“Herb is an institution on Marco and a true patriot. When I got the call as to whether we could accommodate this gathering we did what was necessary to make it happen,” said Ward.
No gathering would be complete without Herb taking the floor with his wife Emily to bring the crowd to their feet with their special rendition of “God Bless America.” He didn’t disappoint that day. Herb graciously thanked both his fellow members of the ROA and the members of the Gyro Club of Naples for honoring him.