Berkeley Heights Honors Veterans, Memorial Helps to Heal

Berkeley Heights VFW Post 6259 Commander Tom Lombardi thanked the large crowd for coming out to honor the Veterans. He invited the crowd to the post for a breakfast prepared by the BH YMCA. Credits: Bobbie Peer
Mayor Bob Woodruff said the Berkeley Heights memorial is our opportunity to heal. Credits: Bobbie Peer
A large crowd turned out on Saturday for the Veterans Day Ceremony at Veterans Memorial Park. Credits: Bobbie Peer
Gov. Livingston Highlander bagpiper Ben Cook performed "Yankee Doodle." Credits: Bobbie Peer

BERKELEY HEIGHTS, NJ - A crowd gathered on Saturday on a beautiful brisk morning for the annual Veterans Day ceremony at Veterans Memorial Park in Berkeley Heights. "Today is the day to remember the spirit of patriotism, the love of our country, and sacrifice by the men and women -- who not only served in the past, but serve today," said Ted Romankow.

Mayor Bob Woodruff reminded the large crowd that the newly renovated memorial is Berkeley Heights' place to heal and take time for remembrance. "Every time we come here, we remember those who have fought, given their lives, come home, and continue to serve us," said Woodruff. "Please take the opportunity today to thank those men that didn't get the thanks 40 years ago when they came back. We will always be grateful to them."

Woodruff spoke of the forefathers of generations past that served in the military with honor, distinction and with bravery. "They came home to acclimation."  

Sign Up for E-News

When the soldiers were called to fight in Vietnam, "they knew what their forefathers had done. They wanted to serve their country. They were told that this war had to be fought to stop the surge of communism. They stepped up. They went to a small nation in south east Asia -- just like their forefathers before them, they bled and they died -- and they gave the ultimate sacrifice," said Woodruff. --- "They served with distinction and watched their friends die. They did the same things their forefathers had done, but the nation turned their back on them." 

Woodruff spoke of the Vietnam veterans specifically because of the mistreatment upon their return and how the nation has healed over the past 40 years, possibly through the building of the Vietnam Veterans Memorial.

"We stand here today, at this memorial, and this is this township's opportunity to heal," said Woodruff. 

The wreath was presented on the memorial and a bell was rung to honor each of the township's residents who served in World War II who paid the ultimate sacrifice. 

Reverend Diane Ruffle provided the closing prayer and thanked all who have served -- "Our freedom is a gift -- we are all so lucky to have it. It is a gift that we are meant not to abuse. Those who have served have stepped up with honor and make sure we are always free. So, from my heart, thank you all."

The Union High School ROTC posted the colors and Father Andy Prachar of Little Flower Church opened the ceremony with an Invocation. In attendance were members of the Berkeley Heights VFW Post 6259, members of the Veterans Memorial Restoration Committee, Councilmen Craig Pastore, Michael D'Aquila, Marc Faecher, and Manny Couto along with members of the Police, Fire and Rescue Squad, DPW, Township and County employees.

Everyone was invited to the VFW Post for a pancake breakfast prepared by the Berkeley YMCA. Close to 80 people enjoyed the breakfast and stayed for the annual Veterans Day recognition ceremony at the post that began at 11:11 a.m.       

Photo credits: Bobbie Peer

TAP Into Another Town's News:

You May Also Be Interested In

Sign Up for E-News

Berkeley Heights

Sleep out at Covenant House

June 18, 2018

I can enjoy the same movies over and over like it were the first time to see them.  My kids roll their eyes at this.  Well, many unimaginable things happen as you become a certain age, and you tend to learn to accept those things graciously as gift.   But I remember the movie “The Blind Side.”  Until I saw that movie, I didn’t know homeless children ...

Very special "Annie, Jr." coming June 29-July 1 at Rahway High School

June 18, 2018

The CAU Community Players will be staging a very special production of "Annie, Jr." at the Rahway High School Center for Performing Arts on Friday, June 29, and Saturday, June 30, at 7:30 p.m. and Sunday, July 1, at 2:00 p.m.

The CAU Community Players is a troupe of actors both with and without developmental disabilities. Formed in 2012, the troupe empowers members with disabilities ...

Kessler Foundation Seeks Volunteers with Spinal Cord Injury for New Study!

Kessler Foundation is a research center in West Orange, NJ that specializes in disability research. We are currently seeking individuals with spinal cord injury to participate in a new research study:

Dr. John O'Neill, principal investigator in Spinal Cord Injury research seeks volunteers for a spinal cord injury study. The purpose of this study is to identify ways of enhancing the ...

Horse Care Workshops at Lord Stirling Start June 23

BASKING RIDGE, N.J. — Somerset County Park Commission Lord Stirling Stable is offering Horse Care Workshop 101 for adults and youth seeking to gain experience and confidence around horses through a combination of non-riding activities and hands-on practice.

Horse Care Workshop 101 will be held at Lord Stirling Stable, 256 South Maple Avenue in Basking Ridge, NJ beginning Saturday June ...

Dine at Chipotle in New Providence, June 18, in Support of Covenant House

Support Covenant House by making dinner a selfless act and support a fundraiser that supports Covenant House. Come in to Chipotle at 1260 Springfield Ave. in New Providence on Monday June 18 between 4 and 8 p.m. Click here to print flyer, or show it on your smartphone or tell the cashier you're supporting the cause for 50 percent of proceeds to be donated to Covenant House.

About: ...

Watchung Borough Mayor and Council Approve Affordable Housing Settlement

June 9, 2018

WATCHUNG, NJ -The Watchung Borough Council voted on Thursday night  to settle its third round affordable housing obligation mandated by the state of New Jersey. Watchung Borough’s immunity from builder's remedy lawsuits  expires on June 30.

 Mayor Stephen Pote was forced to cast the deciding vote after the council deadlocked at 3-3.

Scotch Plains Mayor Al Smith Attends Gun Safety Bills Signing Ceremony with Gov. Murphy in Trenton

June 14, 2018

TRENTON, NJ -- Mayor Al Smith attended a gun safety package bill signing ceremony at the Richard J. Hughes Justice Complex in Trenton on Wednesday with Governor Phil Murphy. Mayor Smith joined a bipartisan group of local and state elected officials, as well as members of Moms Demand Action of Union County, at the event. 

“As a leader in Sandy Hook Promise, I was happy to accept the ...

Union County Freeholders Support LGBTQ Community with Historical Pride Flag Raising Ceremony

June 4, 2018

ELIZABETH, NJ - The rainbow flag, a symbol of pride and independence fly’s high at the Union County Courthouse in recognition of June as LGBTQ Pride Month. 

This historic event by the Union County Board of Chosen Freeholders, and the Office of LGBTQ Services, Department of Human Services and many others, brought dignitaries and people from all over New Jersey to the steps of the ...

Upcoming Events

Wed, June 20, 7:30 PM

Chatham United Methodist Church, Chatham

The Masterwork Chorus Launches 19th Summer Sing ...

Arts & Entertainment


Mon, June 25

Summit YMCA, Summit

June 2018 College Tour


Mon, June 25, 9:00 AM


Kids' Critter Camp


Mon, June 25, 10:00 AM

New Providence Memorial Library, New Providence

Summer Reading Kick-Off: Eyes of the Wild

Arts & Entertainment

Mon, June 25, 10:00 AM

New Providence Memorial Library, New Providence

Summer Reading for Adults at the New Providence ...


Berkeley Heights Here and Now: May Edition

Berkeley Heights Here and Now

How to Design Your Ideal Retirement

Would you like to design your ideal retirement? Where do you begin? First of all, what does retirement mean to you? If you’re in a relationship, does retirement mean the same to you as it does to your partner? Do you know if your “ideal retirement” is affordable or just a pipe dream?

In past generations, retirement planning didn’t involve very much. You stopped work ...