By Larry Clinton, Sausalito Historical Society
In May 2016, Historical Society President Jerry Taylor reported that the Sausalito Lions Club had recreated an Honor Roll of servicemen and women from World War II. A plaque bearing 474 names was formally unveiled and re-dedicated to those Sausalito heroes in a ceremony at the Bay Model on May 21 of that year. Participants even sought to recreate the original dedication ceremony, except, as Jerry noted, with shorter speeches. Keeping the “flavor” of the war years, coffee and doughnuts were served.
Guests of honor at the Bay Model ceremony were C. D. Madsen, a WWII vet and a Lion for over sixty years, along with his slightly younger cousin, Eddie. The new plaque now hangs in the Bay Model’s Marinship exhibit.
However, now there’s more work to be done. San Rafael Lion Bonnie Page visited the Marinship exhibit a few months ago and scoured the WWII Honor Roll but missed both her father, Staff Sergeant Thomas Page (who fought in the Battle of the Bulge and received a Purple Heart) and her uncle, Major Clifford Page (a US fighter pilot). The two "Page boys" lived on Glen Drive.
That discovery triggered an outreach campaign to Lions members and friends asking for any additional information on others who may have been overlooked. That campaign prompted an email inquiry from Linda Parmelee of Maryland asking about her step father, Dante M, Brusatori, born and raised in Sausalito, who had served in the Pacific. “He was severely injured but survived,” recalled Ms. Parmelee. “He was a prisoner of war in the Philippines for over a year.” Alas, Mr. Brusatori was also missing from the plaque.
Determined not to overlook any other local veterans of WWII, the Lions are planning to update the Honor Roll, and are hoping to hear from anyone else whose family members may have been missed in their earlier compilation.
“We deeply apologize, and we are committed to getting it right by republishing the entire tribute so as to not leave anyone behind,” says Sausalito Lions Treasurer Rick Cabral. He urges relatives of any Sausalito servicemen and women to visit the Honor Roll at the Bay model to confirm whether those folks have been included on the plaque. If not, the Lions would like to get any records for missing WWII "native sons or daughters" born and raised in Sausalito. He also suggests that interested parties re-distribute and re-publish this appeal on their own social media networks.
The Lions have set a deadline of September 30 to update the Honor Roll. If you have information or questions about the project, contact SansalitoLionsClub@aol.com or snail mail Sausalito Lions Club, P.O. Box 1049 Sausalito, CA 94966-1049 before the end of September.
Rick Carnal says: “We pray that those who have gone before and their families will forgive our human error and appreciate your help in this effort to set the record straight in perpetuity.”