Arts & Entertainment

Mountainside Remembers Fallen Heroes at Memorial Day Tribute

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VFW Post 10136 deeply appreciates your support. Please consider ordering a personalized brick paver for inclusion at the Memorial Park by visiting www.polarengraving.com/VFW10136. Thank you! Credits: Linda Condrillo
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Mayor Paul Mirabelli drapes the Grand Marshal sash on Leo Corradi. Also shown is Assembylwoman Nancy Munoz and Mountainside Councilman Robert Messler. Credits: Linda Condrillo
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Sound check! VFW Post Commander Colonel Timothy McLaughlin recognizes Michael Wentz, who ensured the audio was in excellent working order for the event. Credits: Linda Condrillo
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Credits: Linda Condrillo
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Father Richard of Our Lady of Lourdes delivered the invocation. Credits: Linda Condrillo
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A special brick paver, engraved with the name of the beloved William Tomco, was laid at the foot of memorial plaque in his honor. Credits: Linda Condrillo
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Credits: Linda Condrillo
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Assemblywoman Nancy Munoz with the entire family of Grand Marshall Leo Corradi. Credits: Linda Condrillo
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Assemblywoman Nancy Munoz with the family of the late William Tomco. Credits: Linda Condrillo
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Colonel McLaughlin hands the microphone to third grade student Riley O’Connor, who read aloud her Memorial Day essay to the crowd of approximately 300 townspeople. Credits: Linda Condrillo
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Soloist Bret O'Brien led the audience in singing The National Anthem at the commencement of the program. Credits: Linda Condrillo
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Scouts in town! Credits: Linda Condrillo
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Credits: Linda Condrillo
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Credits: Linda Condrillo
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(left to right) Colonel Timothy McLaughlin, Councilwoman Deanna Andre, and Grand Marshall Leo Corradi. Credits: Linda Condrillo
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Pollard Hall at Our Lady of Lourdes was the venue for a complimentary picnic luncheon after the Memorial Day tribute. Credits: Linda Condrillo
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Credits: Linda Condrillo
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Korean War Veteran Steven Kowitzki's cap includes the Combat Infantryman's Badge (awarded to soldiers who personally fought in active ground combat), the Syngman Rhee Citation and the Battle Star. Credits: Linda Condrillo
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MOUNTAINSIDE, NJ - Despite the atypical end-of-May weather, hundreds of Borough residents, families and friends turned out to pay tribute to the fallen members of the country’s armed forces on Monday. 

The annual ceremony was held at the newly constructed Veteran’s Memorial Plaza, relocated from its original location on Constitution Plaza last fall. Local dignitaries present included Colonel Timothy McLaughlin, Nancy Munoz, Mayor Paul Mirabelli, Father Richard of Our Lady of Lourdes Church, and Mountainside Council members Mortimer, Andre and Messler.

Former Mountainside resident Leo Corradi, a highly decorated Army Veteran of the Vietnam War, was designated as Grand Marshal of the event. Corradi worked closely with longtime Mountainside resident Mr. William Tomco, to redesign and relocate the new plaza, which was officially opened on Veteran’s Day last November. 

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Mr. Tomco, who passed away in March of this year, was a WWII Navy veteran honored by U.S. and France. He was the recipient of many medals and commendations, including the Purple Heart as well as the French Legion of Honor, the highest military decoration bestowed in France.   

At the conclusion of the hour long ceremony, the crowd gathered at Pollard Hall at Our Lady of Lourdes Church for an indoor picnic lunch.  And while the parade was canceled because of the on-again off-again rain showers, the spirit of the Mountainside community could not have been brighter. 

“In the end, we will remember not the words of our enemies, but the silence of our friends.”  

Martin Luther King, Jr.

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