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Oxi day aboard the USS SLATER | Local Ads

ByJanice K. Merrill

Oct 25, 2021

ALBANY – Millions of people around the world will commemorate OXI Day, a day in honor of Greece’s courageous resistance during WWII. The USS SLATER and the Hellenic community in the Capital Region will remember the day with a brief program starting at 9 a.m. aboard the ship.

In 1940, Mussolini issued an ultimatum to the Greek Prime Minister demanding the entry of the Italian army and the occupation of Greek territory. The Prime Minister refused, and the answer was quickly echoed by the people of Athens as “Oxi”, which means “No”.

Italian forces entered Greece through the rugged Pindus Mountains. There they encountered fierce and unexpected resistance. Hitler was forced to delay the invasion of Russia and extend their campaign until winter in order to subdue the Greeks when the Italians failed in their efforts. This disastrous diversion proved to be of great benefit to the Allied forces. Winston Churchill paid tribute to the Greek resistance by saying: “… so far we would say the Greeks are fighting like heroes. From now on, we will say that the heroes fight like Greeks.

The USS SLATER has a special connection to the Greek people. In 1951 the ship, along with three sister ships, was transferred to the Hellenic Navy and renamed AETOS, which means eagle. She has flown hundreds of reconnaissance missions and training cruises for Sea Cadets over a 40-year career.

Admission is payable for tours of the USS SLATER. Adults, $ 9; seniors, $ 8; children, $ 7; children under 5, free.

The USS SLATER, America’s last afloat escort destroyer, is open to the public for its 24th season in Albany. Guided tours start every 30 minutes. No reservation is required. The USS SLATER is open 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Wednesday through Sunday, November 28. The ship is located in downtown Albany, at the intersection of Broadway and Quay Street.

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