Local earns ‘Patriotism Award’

Staff Writer
A behind the scenes local man recently received recognition for all his hard work and dedication and for demonstrating his love for God and his country.
Tom Moran, of Wapakoneta, was awarded the 2012 Patriotism Award through the 4th degree Knights of Columbus at the club’s annual holiday party this past weekend at the Knights of Columbus hall in Versailles.
Each year since the early 1980s, the St. Gaspar del Bufalo Assembly has chosen one of its members to receive a special award for his personal demonstration of American patriotism. This is the only award that the organization gives out on a yearly basis and is a prestigious award for members chosen.
Moran said this came as a surprise to him, since he did not know he was nominated.
“I was very surprised,” Moran said.
The fourth degree Knights of Columbus holds their regular meetings in Minster, but members are from all over the area, including as far south as Versailles, as far west as the Indiana border and as far east as Indian Lake.
Moran has been a member of the 4th degree chapter for five years, but has been a member of the Knights of Columbus, 3rd degree, for the past 20 years, in which he still attends monthly meetings.
Moran likes to work behind the scenes and can be described as having a reserved, easy-going personality.
He is not interested in any achievements, accolades or personal recognition, but instead he is more interested in getting the job done, said a brief statement describing Moran at the holiday party, right before he received his award.
“Tom is not a guy that does things to be recognized,” said Dave Severt, who nominated Moran for the award and which was evaluated by the assembly officers who then chose Moran to be the recipient this year. “He’s interested in getting the job done.”
The Knights of Columbus members are a group of men who honor charity, fraternity, unity and patriotism, and have a love for God and their country.
Moran exemplifies all of the above, and is a regular attendee for the third and fourth degree meetings, and he proudly wears his full regalia for confirmations, funerals and crownings.
Events that Moran takes part in are helping with the chicken and fish fries and is avid on attending and helping out from start to finish at these events.
Moran is also a member of the Knights of Columbus “Flags of America Team” for the local chapter, and also attended a special ceremony on Flag Day this spring in Columbus, where he helped demonstrate patriotism. He represented his local assembly during the Patriot Presentation for the entire state of Ohio.
“It fascinated me when they came in with caps and swords when they escorted the bishop,” Moran said of one of the reasons he decided to join the organization years ago.
Knights of Columbus members all across the nation are often called upon to escort the bishop, pope, etc. to special events.
According to kofc.org, The Knights of Columbus has grown from several members in one council to more than 14,000 councils and 1.8 million members throughout the United States, Canada, the Philippines, Mexico, Poland, the Dominican Republic, Puerto Rico, Panama, the Bahamas, the Virgin Islands, Cuba, Guatemala, Guam and Saipan. The Order has been called “The strong right arm of the Church,” and has been praised by popes, presidents and other world leaders, for support of the Church, programs of evangelization and Catholic education, civic involvement and aid to those in need.
Moran, who is a member of St. Joseph Catholic Church, said his faith is important to him. He also holds his country near and dear to his heart.
At the top of the nearly 3-foot award that Moran will house for a year, until the next recipient is named, is a painting of an eye.
Knights of Columbus members noted “This is the all seeing eye of God, because He sees us in what we do and He sees what we see with our hearts.”
Moran and his wife, Judy, have been married for 57 years, and they have seven children, one deceased. He is retired from Moran Refrigeration, in St. Marys.