In a week honoring veterans, Darien honors late resident and dedicated Marine Gene Coyle
All slideshow photos and video below — Laureen Vellante
It is only fitting that a dedication to the late Darien resident Eugene Coyle be held the week of both Veterans Day and the 242nd birthday of the Marine Corps.
The United States Marine Corps Birthday is celebrated every year on 10 November with a traditional ball and cake-cutting ceremony. On that day in 1775, the Continental Marines were established.
Last year, a committee was established to develop a fitting memorial for Gene Coyle, and this week, that discussion came to fruition when a ceremony to unveil the plaque was held Wednesday. Mr. Coyle, a dedicated and supportive Marine, long-time town servant, father, grandfather and five-decade employee of Time Magazine, died in June 2016.
The plaque, placed on the upper level of the Mather Community Center at the Town Hall complex, reads:
In Memory of Gene Coyle
Dedicated to family, community, and country, Gene served in the United States Marine Corps during the Cold War era and was a leading member of the Representative Town Meeting for more than 25 years.
The plaque includes a photo taken of Gene Coyle and a little girl, Clare Molloy, on Memorial Day 2010, that has been reprinted several times in The Darien Times since it was taken by Times' photographer Laureen Vellante.
— Luke Russert (@LukeRussert) May 30, 2016
The photo was memorialized in a Tweet from former NBC broadcast news correspondent Luke Russert in May 2016, shortly before Mr. Coyle died, after The Darien Times reprinted it in order to dedicated its Memorial Day section to Gene Coyle. Mr. Coyle was instrumental in supporting that section in this paper every year.