ABINGTON, Mass. - The Abington Knights of Columbus has offered to return a $150 deposit to a soldier who had to change his wedding date due to a call-up from the Army.
The Abington Knights of Columbus has offered to return a $150 deposit to a soldier who had to change his wedding date due to a call-up from the Army.
Pvt. Jose Silva of Brockton told the Enterprise this week he had put down the deposit on the hall for his Aug. 25 reception, but then found out he would be sent to Missouri for training a week or two before that. Silva said the booking agent at the hall hadn't offered to return the deposit.
But Wednesday, the agent, who only identified himself as Frank, said he was ready to hand the money back to Silva.
"I called the accountant to get a check ... I got it this morning," the man said.
The man said he had contacted Silva's fiancee, and told her the money was ready to be picked up. But the man claimed he was planning to give the money back anyway, and wasn't spurred to do so by media attention.
Silva didn't return a message Wednesday. He previously said he wasn't sure if he'll be sent overseas for combat duty after his training.
The issue of the deposit was the subject of a lengthy discussion on the Boston radio talk show hosted by Margery Eagan and Jim Braude on 96.9FM Wednesday.
"This is an itty bitty thing one could do to show respect," Braude said. The hosts also mentioned a May incident where the Veterans of Foreign Wars hall in Abington denied the family of a slain Rockland Marine use of the building for a memorial reception. The hall had been booked for a bingo event, officials said at the time.
"They're screwing them again down in Abington," Braude said during the show, which featured calls from numerous upset listeners. "What's wrong with Abington?"
Joe Colantoni, director of veterans' services in Abington, said the town doesn't deserve such characterizations. Abington is "110 percent" supportive of veterans, Colantoni said.
"The town of Abington and the veterans here are cemented together," he said. "Abington respects the veterans in this town unaninmously."
Kyle Alspach of The Enterprise (Brockton, Mass.) can be reached at email@example.com.