(SACRAMENTO)- United States Navy Veteran and Montclair resident Donald Vodvarka was honored as the Veteran of the Year for the 52nd Assembly District by Assemblymember Freddie Rodriguez (D-Pomona). Vodvarka served as a Petty Officer First Class during World War II.
“Donald courageously served our country in World War II and continued to serve our community in his post-military career as a volunteer firefighter and police officer,” said Rodriguez. “It is truly an honor to be able to recognize his service and name him our Veteran of the Year.”
Vodvarka was a Petty Officer First Class in the United States Navy from 1945 to 1958. He was blinded for a month when he was exposed to a test A-bomb flash in the Marshall Islands near the Island of Bikini. His service earned him a Presidential Commendation from President Harry S. Truman. After his discharge, Vodvarka worked for the Ontario Police Department for 5 years and then for Chaffey High School District as a cabinet maker.
When the City of Montclair, then known as Monte Vista, was first being organized, Vodvarka was a volunteer fireman with the Monte Vista Fire Department. He and a group of other volunteers got together to work on incorporating the city. He is a life member of the Chino VFW and a planning commissioner for the City of Montclair.
Assemblymember Rodriguez represents the 52nd Assembly District which includes the cities of Chino, Montclair, Ontario, Pomona and portions of unincorporated Fontana.