Illinois House Honors Joe Belman on His 100th Birthday


State Rep. Larry Walsh Jr., D-Elwood, sponsored a resolution adopted by the Illinois House of Representatives (HR0637) on March 13th, 2024, to celebrate and honor World War II veteran Joseph “Joe” Belman of Crest Hill on the occasion of his 100th birthday.

The resolution honoring Mr. Belman, passed unanimously through the legislative body, states in part:

“WHEREAS, Joe Belman enlisted in the U.S. Army Air Force during World War II, serving as a B-17 Flying Fortress ball turret gunner and achieving the rank of staff sergeant; while exposed to the dangers of anti-aircraft fire and enemy fighters during his 35 missions over enemy territory in the European theater, his valorous actions contributed to pushing the enemy out of Europe and into Germany.”

Mr. Belman was honored in person on the Illinois House of Representatives floor. He traveled to Springfield and sat in the gallery with his family as Walsh presented the resolution to the assembled elected officials.

“Joe Belman’s commitment to service and advocacy persisted beyond his wartime service,” Walsh said, “he showcased his enduring dedication to community welfare through his involvement in the Citizens’ Utility Board and the Will County Jury Commission and his leadership roles in the American G.I. Forum and the Illinois Hispanic Democratic Council.”

Walsh was joined by co-sponsors Representatives Natalie Manley (98th District), Dagmara Avelar (85th District), Anthony DeLuca (80th District), and Harry Benton (97th District).

“Joe Belman isn’t just a hero to the people of Joliet,” Walsh stated, “his commitment to public service is a story that we can all celebrate. It is an honor to have the chance to tell the people of Illinois about our hometown hero. Everything about Joe’s story shows why we call his generation ‘the greatest.'”


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