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Local Veteran’s Generosity Benefits Catholic Charities

FULTON, NY – For more than 50 years, Myron “Jim” Harbison served his country and his government.

Now, as he enjoys his golden years, Harbison is serving the community he loves by supporting a number of local not-for-profit organizations that do so much to improve the quality of life in Oswego and its surrounding areas.

A 25-year veteran of the United States Navy, Harbison served in World War II, the Korean War, and Vietnam.

U.S. Navy veteran Jim Harbison presents representatives from Catholic Charities of Oswego County with a donation in the amount of $25,000 in support of the agency’s many human services programs. From left are: Harbison; executive director of Catholic Charities Mary-Margaret Pezzella-Pekow; Mireille L. Watts, CPA; and president of Catholic Charities’ board of directors Tom Greco of Fulton Savings Bank.
U.S. Navy veteran Jim Harbison presents representatives from Catholic Charities of Oswego County with a donation in the amount of $25,000 in support of the agency’s many human services programs. From left are: Harbison; executive director of Catholic Charities Mary-Margaret Pezzella-Pekow; Mireille L. Watts, CPA; and president of Catholic Charities’ board of directors Tom Greco of Fulton Savings Bank.

Following his tour of duty in the U.S. Navy, Harbison worked for the United States Alcohol Beverage Control Board in Virginia before retiring and moving back home to his native Oswego.

With the passing of his beloved wife, Mary, Jim decided to return to Virginia to be closer to his friends and fellow veterans.

But before he left, he felt compelled to do something special for his community by helping organizations whose efforts he believes in.

In recent days, he has made a number of generous donations to area organizations including: Catholic Charities of Oswego County, the Oswego Salvation Army, Oswego YMCA, Oswego County Humane Society, Oswego Health, Oswego Chapter of the American Red Cross, and St. Mary’s Church, in support of their efforts to host the Salvation Army’s soup kitchen.

He has also developed a scholarship fund for students at Oswego High School and contributed to the Elks Scholarship Program.

Donations to other area youth programs were also made.

According to Harbison, the current economy and the increased number of families that are turning to Catholic Charities of Oswego County for assistance inspired him to help assist the agency in meeting the needs of those families.

Executive Director of Catholic Charities of Oswego County Mary-Margaret Pezzella-Pekow and president of the agency’s board of directors Tom Greco of Fulton Savings Bank, who accepted the donation, were truly moved by Harbison’s graciousness and generosity.

“We really can’t say enough about how appreciative we are of Mr. Harbison’s donation. He is a remarkable man who has enjoyed an interesting life and cares deeply about his community and those he shares it with. His donation will go a long way in helping us continue our mission of helping those in desperate need of our many services,” said Pezzella-Pekow.

Catholic Charities of Oswego County provides an array of services, free of charge, that are administered by a trained professional staff: emergency assistance, food pantry, youth activities, children’s respite services, school and home-base caseworkers and many other programs that address issues facing people today.

Through service, advocacy, convening and empowerment Catholic Charities’ programs heighten the spirits of those they serve by restoring their dignity and helping to fill the basic needs of families and individuals who are often in a time of crisis with nowhere to turn.

Located at 365 W. First St., Fulton, Catholic Charities of Oswego County serves all people in need throughout Oswego County regardless of their religious affiliation.

Primary funding sources for Catholic Charities of Oswego County’s programs are the United Way of Greater Oswego County, the Diocesan Hope Appeal, the County of Oswego and private donations by individuals and local companies and organizations.

For more information on the programs offered through Catholic Charities of Oswego County, or to help support their efforts, call 598-3980.