Robert Riordan, veterans champion, dies at 82

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In 2010, State Sen. Charles Fuschillo Jr. named Riordan to the state Veterans Hall of Fame.

“I am deeply saddened by the passing of one of our community’s most devoted leaders,” Fuschillo said. “Tom was a tireless and passionate advocate for our veterans. Whether it was organizing service projects to benefit veterans in the Northport VA Hospital, working with students to help send care packages to troops serving overseas or coordinating veterans’ remembrance ceremonies in the community, Tom never stopped fighting for those who fought for us.

“Tom touched many lives through his generosity,” Fuschillo continued. “As his incredible legacy of service shows, our entire community is a better place because of Tom. He will be greatly missed.”

“I’m lucky to have had him as a friend,” Denenberg said of Riordan. “Tom was an iconic figure in Nassau County. He was very much a part of his generation, often called the Greatest Generation.”

Edward Sholander, Post 1282’s current commander, said Riordan “was dedicated to his family first, the American Legion second. He was an absolutely fabulous recruiter for Post No. 1282. He never met a veteran he couldn’t convince to become a member of the American Legion. He was a friend and a mentor.”

Riordan is survived by his wife, Margaret; two daughters, Peggy Vento and Anne Manson; a son, Robert; a brother, Paul, and 10 grandchildren.

A funeral Mass was celebrated at Sacred Heart Roman Catholic Church in North Merrick on April 23. Burial followed at Long Island National Cemetery in Farmingdale. The Bellmore Funeral Home made the arrangements.

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