DE PERE, WI — Rep. Gallagher today presented Army National Guard Veteran Ryan Lonergan with a certificate and Congressional Record highlighting his recognition as Northeast Wisconsin’s inaugural Veteran of the Year. Lonergan, who was selected for this award by a committee of local veterans and community leaders, was chosen because of his work to support veterans as they transition back to civilian life.
“Every Veterans Day, we hear stories of veterans who have gone above and beyond the call of duty. Ryan’s story is no different,” said Rep. Gallagher. “From coordinating numerous veterans events to creating a podcast to help veterans transition to civilian life, Ryan has displayed a passion for giving back to our community. We’re lucky to have him here in Northeast Wisconsin, and it’s an honor to highlight his work by presenting him with the inaugural Northeast Wisconsin Veteran of the Year award.”
The committee selected Lonergan based on the following criteria:
- Service: The veteran demonstrates selfless service to our nation and Northeast Wisconsin through public service or volunteering,
- Excellence: The veteran demonstrates going above and beyond the call of duty, whatever the job may be, while in the military or in retirement, and
- Dedication: The veteran demonstrates a clear commitment to our country and community, and a passion for improving life in Northeast Wisconsin.
Lonergan served in the Army National Guard for six years including a tour of duty in Iraq. During this time he received awards such as the Army Achievement Medal, Army Good Conduct Medal, National Defense Service Ribbon, Global War on Terrorism Service Medal, Iraq Campaign Medal with Campaign Star, Army Service Ribbon, Overseas Service Ribbon, and the Armed Forces Reserve Medal with M Device. He’s hosted numerous events in Northeast Wisconsin to allow veterans to share their stories of service, and created a community within Northeast Wisconsin for veterans to support each other. He is also the host of the Fragout Podcast, which shares valuable information, stories, events, and advice for the veterans’ community.
In Lonergan’s nomination, the individual who nominated him said, “I believe Ryan Lonergan should be Veteran Of The Year because of his larger-than-life pursuit to serve the veteran community in many different forms. This is more than a passion; it is his life’s purpose to elevate the quality of life, expand networks, and share community resources with all veterans he meets.”
More than 40 nominations were received between September 21 and October 8. To be eligible for the award, the nominees had to be someone who:
- Is a veteran of one of the six military services, including Reserves or National Guard,
- Is a resident of the Eighth Congressional District, and
- Can supply a DD-214.
“That we received over 40 nominations for the Northeast Wisconsin Veteran of the Year is a reminder of how many veterans in Northeast Wisconsin go above and beyond to serve their community,” continued Rep. Gallagher. “No matter their era, their service, or rank, all of these veterans demonstrated a lifelong commitment to serving our country.”