Joseph Gallant, Jr., was born in Harlem in 1949 and later relocated to the Bronx, where he currently resides. By age 11, Mr. Gallant knew he would serve his country. At a young age, he joined the 369th Naval Cadets and moved on to the Job Corps before enlisting into the United States Army in 1966.
After completing basic training at Fort Gordon, Georgia, Mr. Gallant attended jump school at Fort Benning, where he was inducted into the 173rd Airborne Rangers. He was deployed to Vietnam from 1968 to 1969, with the rank of Specialist/E4. Upon his honorable discharge, Mr. Gallant was awarded various medals for his undeniable bravery, sacrifi ce and dedication, including a Bronze Star, a Good Conduct medal and an Air Defense Medal.
Mr. Gallant is current President of the Charlton & Thompson Bronx NABVETS Chapter #0029, and is a member of the Friends of Charlton & Thompson’s Park located on East 164th Street, between Cauldwell Avenue and Boston Road in the Bronx. In October 2010, the Friends of Charlton & Thompson Park, along with members from the Bronx Chapters of NABVETS, spearheaded a mission in which the remains of Cornelius Charlton were moved to their rightful resting place at Arlington National Cemetery in Virginia – after 57 years. This mission was extremely valiant, because Mr. Gallant knows how important it is to never leave a man behind. He is devoted to maintaining the honor of his fellow military men and women.
Along with many other soldiers, Mr. Gallant suffers from exposure to Agent Orange in Vietnam, an herbicide that was sprayed on trees and vegetation. Although he is ill, Mr. Gallant remains dedicated to providing support and leadership to veterans from all walks of military service.