Cona Elder Law


James Weber, Vietnam Veteran, 9/11 First Responder, Honored by Cona Elder Law and LI State Veterans Home


November 2017 

For Immediate Release


James Weber, Vietnam Veteran, 9/11 First Responder, Honored by Cona Elder Law and LI State Veterans Home

Winners of Cona Elder Law’s Student Art Contest for Veterans Recognized at Event                  

James Weber, 70 and a Rocky Point resident, was recently honored at a “Salute to Veterans” Event sponsored by Cona Elder Law, elder law firm in Melville and LI State Veterans Home, Stony Brook.

Drafted into the army after graduating high school in 1966, James felt it was his responsibility and duty as an American to serve in the army.  Earning both Bronze and Purple Heart medals as a combat veteran in Vietnam, he was in the Airborne Unit (“Screaming Eagles”) and Tet Offensive.  After his military service, he toured the world as a merchant marine for 11 years.

"A humble man who has given so much to help our country, James took it upon himself to go to Ground Zero during 9/11 as a first responder,” says Melissa Negrin-Wiener, Esq., partner, Cona Elder Law.  James has a long history of heroism throughout his career even after military service.  Working as a deck hand in charge of safety for the Staten Island Ferry, he earned citations from Mayors Dinkins, Koch and Giuliani for recovering three people from ferry accidents.

As a recent patient at the LI State Veterans Home in Stony Brook for three months following quadricep surgery, James credits the outstanding staff for helping him walk again.  "We honored James for his accomplishments both in Vietnam and as an advocate for Veterans to receive entitled benefits," says Jonathan Spier, Assistant Executive Director of the Veterans Home.

James believes it was his military experience that helped him define who he is today by learning about human nature, dignity, and honoring others who served.  He counts his blessings each day.

In addition to his military career, James is a photojournalist whose work has been published in The New York Times and Associated Press among others. In December, his photos will be displayed in a solo exhibition at The School of Visual Arts.

James lives with his wife Lara, a retired RN.  He has two daughters ages 39 and 26.

                           “These Colors Don't Run” Art Contest Winners

For the 5th year, Cona Elder Law held an art contest to give students in elementary, middle and high school the opportunity to use their artistic creativity as a way to thank local Veterans for their service to our country.  “The contest instills in the students an appreciation of what our Veterans do to protect us," says Melissa Negrin-Wiener.

Three winners were chosen from over 100 entries based on their originality and how they depicted the spirit of honoring our Veterans.  They were recognized at the event, and their artwork was displayed during the program.

The winners are:

Erin Wong, second grade, 7, Deer Park

Deana Fragiorgi, seventh grade, 12, Kings Park

Denver Dukes, 12th grade, 17, Cold Spring Harbor

At the event, Melissa presented the winners with a $50 gift card and certificate.

Cona Elder Law is recognized as a leading elder law and estate planning firm on Long Island.  The firm has been ranked the #1 Elder Law firm by Long Island Business News for the past 6 years and has been a finalist in the HIA Business Achievement Awards.  Cona Elder Law is also recognized for its charitable works and has received the Outstanding Corporation Award from the Association of Fundraising Professionals.  The firm provides creative advocacy and cutting edge planning strategies and has been featured in many publications including: The New York Times, The Wall Street Journal, Newsday, L.I. Business News, Investor’s Business Daily, USA Today, The Daily News, The New York Post, Kiplinger’s, Reader's Digest and many  others.   Cona Elder Law attorneys have appeared as guests on WNBC-TV, WABC-TV, CNN-fn, News 12, WLNY News 55 and many radio stations including WOR, WCBS AM, WBAB and WFAN.

For a free Guide to Elder Law and Estate Planning, visit us at, e-mail or call 631.390.5000.

About the Author Cona Elder Law

Cona Elder Law is a full service law firm based in Melville, LI. Our firm concentrates in the areas of elder law, estate planning, estate administration and litigation, special needs planning and health care facility representation. We are proud to have been recognized for our innovative strategies, creative techniques and unparalleled negotiating skills unendingly driven toward our paramount objective - satisfying the needs of our clients.

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