Florida Veterans' Hall of Fame

SEPTEMBER 22, 2020

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TALLAHASSEE – Gov. Ron DeSantis and the Cabinet voted unanimously today to ‎induct 20 veterans into the Florida Veterans’ Hall of Fame. The names for the ‎Class of 2020 were presented for a formal vote during the Sept. 22 Cabinet ‎Meeting by FDVA Deputy Executive Director James S. “Hammer” Hartsell.‎

The Florida Veterans’ Hall of Fame recognizes and honors those military veterans ‎who, through their works and lives during or after military service, have made a ‎significant contribution to the State of Florida through civic, business, public ‎service or other pursuits. It is not a traditional military hall of fame, as it focuses ‎on post-military contributions to the State of Florida. ‎

‎“I was honored to forward the names of these great Americans to the Governor ‎and Cabinet,” said Hartsell, a retired Marine Corps Major General. “These former ‎service members represent the best of the best of our veteran community.”‎

Last month, the Florida Veterans’ Hall of Fame Council met to review ‎and select nominees submitted from the general public. Following a formal ‎report and audit, the results are transmitted to Florida Department of Veterans’ ‎Affairs, which submits the nominations to the Governor and Cabinet. Today’s ‎vote formally approves the selection. A ceremony honoring the 20 inductees ‎from the Class of 2020 will be scheduled in the future.‎

The Class of 2020 is the eighth class to enter the Florida Veterans’ Hall of Fame.‎

Gary Clark, Colonel, USAF (Ret)‎

George Duren, U.S. Army Veteran

The late Michael Ferguson, Brigadier General, U.S. Army (Ret)‎

Jay Garner, Lieutenant General, U. S. Army (Ret)‎

Martin Gayeski, U.S. Army Veteran‎

Frank Hahnel, Jr., U.S. Marine Corps Veteran

George Hardy, Lieutenant Colonel, Army Air Corps/ U.S. Air Force (Ret)‎

Ronald Joe, Colonel, U.S. Army (Ret)‎

Daila Espeut-Jones, ‎ Master Sergeant, U.S. Army (Ret)‎

Darryle Kouns, Colonel, U.S. Army (Ret)‎

Cliff Leonard, U.S. Marine Corps Veteran‎

Mike Mason, U.S. Army Veteran‎ ‎ ‎

Michelle Poitier, U.S. Navy Veteran‎

Deloris Quaranta, Technical Sergeant, U.S. Air Force (Ret)‎ ‎ ‎

Dean Resch, Chief Warrant Officer 4, U.S. Army (Ret)‎

Claude Shipley, Colonel, U.S. Army (Ret)‎

Donald Slesnick II, Lieutenant Colonel, U.S. Army (Ret)‎

Morris Steen Jr., Captain, U.S. Navy (Ret)‎

Dr. Norman Thagard, U.S. Marine Corps Veteran and Astronaut‎

Alton Yates, Lieutenant Colonel, U.S. Air Force (Ret)‎