Without Proper Memorial Day Exercises Due to COVID, Visit One of North End’s Hero Squares and Learn About History

There are over 1,700 Hero Squares across Boston and dozens in the North End that pay tribute to residents that made the ultimate sacrifice by giving their lives for their country during wartime.

“These squares are found in intersections like the one we are in today,” said Mayor Martin Walsh. “These squares deserve to be noticed and those memorialized for their commitment to service should be remembered.”

In 1898, the first Hero Square in Boston was named Dewey Square at South Station. Since then, the city has dedicated more than 1,700 Hero Squares for service members killed in action. The gold star on each sign represents the ultimate sacrifice that was given. It is designated only for those killed in action.

In 2013, the city created and added biography plagues at each Hero Square. These plaques have a barcode you can scan that takes you to a website with more details and photos about the service member.

For example there is a Hero Square for Isadore J. Accardi on the corner of Charter Street and Unity Street in the North End

Accardi was born on April 26, 1923 in Lawrence before moving to the North End. After three years of high school, Accardi worked in the fishing industry and later showed his love for our country when he was inducted into the United States Army on March 24, 1943.

Private First Class Accardi proudly served with the 30th Infantry Division, 119th Infantry Regiment until he was killed in action in France on July 13, 1944. Isodore was survived by his father, Joseph Accardi.

There’s Louis A. Barone Square at the corner of Cooper Street and Salem Street. Barone was born to Vincent and Catherine Barone on May 7, 1923. He was a resident of Cooper Street in the North End and worked in leather manufacturing after two years of high school. Barone was inducted into the United States Army on July 17, 1943.

Private Barone proudly served in the 179th Infantry Regiment, 45th Infantry Division during World War II. Barone was killed in action on September 1, 1944 in the Fort of Charlemont, Givet, France. He is buried at the Rhone American Cemetery. For the heroism he displayed in his service to our country. Barone was awarded the Purple Heart.

He was survived by his parents after the war.

Among the dozens of Hero Squares in the North End there’s one for Guy Joseph Destefano

At the corner of North Street and Union Street.

DeStefano was born to Carmela DeStefano on November 4, 1911 and graduated from the English High School of Boston in 1931.

After high school DeStefano enlisted in the United States Navy on December 1, 1931. Carpenter’s Mate First Class (CM1).

DeStefano proudly served aboard USS Boise, a Brooklyn-class light cruiser. In August 1942, Boise escorted a convoy to Fiji and New Hebrides. From there she went to Guadalcanal to help cover the landing of Marine reinforcements. A force of Japanese cruisers and destroyers found Boise and her task force during the Battle of Cape Esperance. She was hit several times with little effect, until one explosion caused a powder fire and flooding.

One hundred and seven crewmen were killed on October 12, 1942, including DeStefano. His body was never recovered. For heroism and honor in service to our country DeStefano was awarded the Purple Heart.

“Hero Squares allow us to pay tribute and honor to our fallen service members in a very visible and permanent way,” said the City’s Veterans Commissioner Robert Santiago. “The Hero Square program is very meaningful to the family and friends of a fallen soldier as well as the community they lived in.” To check our more Hero Squares in the North End and for a complete list visit https://www.boston.gov/departments/veterans-services/hero-squares-veterans.

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