The Union-News - November 30, 2000
Irish Tenor Sings Tonight in 'Hamp
Irish entertainer John McDermott will make his third return engagement to Northampton for a Christmas concert tonight.
It is the second time a Christmas show has been presented by McDermott in Northampton, Robert P. Cahillane, director of veterans services for the city of Northampton, said in a recent interview.
"It's just a real special, special show," Cahillane said. "It's very light." It will be a combination of his music and Christmas songs. The concert will be at 8 p.m. at The Academy of Music.
Cahillane said he asked McDermott to return because of McDermott's "fantastic performance" at the previous concert.
McDermott's lifelong commitment to veterans was recognized on Veterans Day 1999, when he went to Washington, D.C., as the guest of the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs, and performed at the Vietnam Veterans Memorial.
McDermott was one of the original members of the 1999 PBS broadcast and touring group, The Irish Tenors. His 1999 album, "Remembrance," is a tribute to America's veterans. He was honored as Man of the Year in 1999 by Boston's New England Shelter for Homeless Veterans.
The city's department of Veterans' Services is sponsoring the concert with proceeds going to two memorial sites, the homeless shelter at Veterans Administration Medical Center and the Department of Veteran's Services.
Cahillane said proceeds would be used to replace 19 trees at a monument honoring 25 men who lost their lives in a crash in Holyoke when returning home form World War II, and for planting rose bushed and shrubs at a monument in Northampton honoring three men killed in a crash on a training flight in preparation for the Berlin Airlift.
A handicapped van is needed for the homeless shelter; the concert would also help to purchase veterans services items such as flags, flag poles, weather and bus transportation.
Cahillane said McDermott's popularity has grown in the past three years and that seating for the performance is limited.