SOUTH PHILLY: Cookie’s Tavern Kicks Off ‘Daddy Wags’ Memorial

Filed under: South Philadelphia,South Philly |

by Maria Merlino

Philadelphia Regional Port Authority Produce Market Manager William  O’Meara, Judge Joe Waters, attorney Richard J. Fuschino, Ken Adams, Richie Walsh, Richie Gray, attorney Mike Wallace and Marion Wagner, daughter of the late Sgt James”Daddy Wags” Wagner. Photo by Maria Merlino

Philadelphia Regional Port Authority Produce Market Manager William O’Meara, Judge Joe Waters, attorney Richard J. Fuschino, Ken Adams, Richie Walsh, Richie Gray, attorney Mike Wallace and Marion Wagner, daughter of the late Sgt James”Daddy Wags” Wagner. Photo by Maria Merlino

It’s a February military tradition in South Philadelphia to gather at Cookie’s Tavern on 10th & Oregon to celebrate the birthday of the late Marine Sgt. James “Daddy Wags” Wagner. The noted veteran of the Vietnam war died of a brain tumor when he was 57. He would have been 70 last week. Best known for his USMC birthday party every November, he was recognized by every Marine in the world.

From the Marine Corps Law Enforcement, Chief Inspector Tony Boyle, Del-Vets Commander Sam Minutola and Operations at West Point, Billy Latta. Photo by Maria Merlino

From the Marine Corps Law Enforcement, Chief Inspector Tony Boyle, Del-Vets Commander Sam Minutola and Operations at West Point, Billy Latta. Photo by Maria Merlino

Wagner’s daughter, Marion Wagner, said during the toast of Crown Royal, Wags’s favorite drink, that “we’ve lost a few friends over the years, Medal of Honor recipient Jon Caviani, homicide detective Jack Cummings and Del-Vet hero, Tom ‘Pittzie’ Pitts — all of these men were great friends of my dad and we honor them also. I’m grateful to Sam Minutola for keeping the platoon together. It’s a true mission of love.”

Loyal Marines that will always remember: Jim McNesby, Del-Vets Commander Sam Minutola, Joe Barnes, Chief Inspector Tony Boyle, Richie Gray, Highway Patrol Officer Jerry Murphy. Photo by Maria Merlino

Loyal Marines that will always remember: Jim McNesby, Del-Vets Commander Sam Minutola, Joe Barnes, Chief Inspector Tony Boyle, Richie Gray, Highway Patrol Officer Jerry Murphy. Photo by Maria Merlino

Mike Kelly, attorney Richard J. Fuschino, Marion Wagner, meteorologist Tom Lamaine and Jim McNesby. Photo by Maria Merlino

Mike Kelly, attorney Richard J. Fuschino, Marion Wagner, meteorologist Tom Lamaine and Jim McNesby. Photo by Maria Merlino

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