Barnegat Seven-Year Old Has Appreciation for Veterans

By Eric Englund | Nov 27, 2019
Courtesy of: Rose Garden Florist JUST FOR YOU: Vincent Lorenzo holds a red, white and blue floral arrangement he ordered for Laurie Roberts, who served 11 tours of duty with the U.S. Army.

Barnegat — When 7-year-old Vincent Lorenzo emptied his piggy bank in early November, he wasn’t looking to purchase something for himself. Instead, the Barnegat Township youngster bought a floral arrangement to honor a local veteran, Laurie Roberts, who had done 11 tours of duty with the Army.

“My son loves to honor the men and women who serve our country,” said his mother, Marissa Lorenzo. “For the past couple two years, Vincent has dressed as a soldier for Halloween.”

She said this year, the Cecil S. Collins Elementary School student was a Vietnam soldier because he wanted to honor his grandfather, the late James Beninato, who was awarded three Purple Hearts during his four-year tour in Vietnam.

“He died before Vincent was born,” said Lorenzo. “Even though he never met him, he feels close to him because we have photo books, which he loves looking at.”

Lorenzo said her son’s keen interest in veterans came about when he was 4.

“At the time, we took a trip to Washington,” she said. “He wanted to see the White House, but there were no tours available, so he was a little sad. But we drove around to see the Washington Monument, the Capitol, the memorials and Arlington National Cemetery. After that trip, he wanted to know about our history, and that’s when he learned more about the people in the military service.”

She said that when Roberts received the bouquet, she was “very much touched.”

“Her husband came home and found her crying,” said Lorenzo. “He thought maybe something was wrong, but my son’s gesture made her feel emotional.”

With the holidays approaching, Vincent is making Christmas cards to spread some joy to servicemen and woman.

“He is remarkable young boy,” she said. “He’d rather spend his money doing things to make others happy.”

Rose Garden Florist would agree, posting the following on its Facebook page:

“He wanted to use his own savings to do something special to thank her (Roberts) on Veterans Day – how sweet is that? Meeting you and your mom made our day a bit brighter because of your thoughtfulness. We know your special veteran will be especially touched with your gesture.”

— Eric Englund


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