SCOTCH PLAINS, NJ -- Since Memorial Day gatherings are prohibited under Gov. Murphy's social distancing guidelines, Scotch Plains and Fanwood have sought alternative methods to their fallen heroes.

While the Scotch Plains-Fanwood Memorial Day Parade was canceled, Scotch Plains will host its annual ceremony honoring the soldiers who made the ultimate sacrifice on Monday, May 25, at 10:00 a.m. Mayor Al Smith and veterans will gather at the War Memorial at the corner of Park Ave. and Front Street in Scotch Plains and pay tribute to the members of the military who died in combat. The public is not invited to attend the annual ceremony because of Gov. Murphy's executive order barring the gathering of groups of more than ten people, but it can be viewed on Facebook Live and on Scotch Plains TV.

This year, Scotch Plains has printed Gold Star signs with biographical information of the township's fallen heroes. The signs will be placed on the Alan Augustine Green on Park Ave. near the War Memorial to honor the following servicemen.

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Technical Sergeant John Barich
US Army --28th Infantry Regiment, 8th Infantry Division
Born: April 29, 1918
Awarded Bronze Star
KIA: Thursday, December 7, 1944

Sgt. Barich lived on Hunter Ave. in Scotch Plains with his wife, Mary (Puchel) and son, John Richard Barich (age 2), according to the Courier-News (Dec. 26, 1944). Before entering the service, he has employed by the Federal Shipbuilding Company in Kearney, NJ. He was a graduate of Cranford HS.

Seaman Rudolf W. Bochkay
US Navy
Lived on Glenside Ave. in Scotch Plains.
KIA: Wednesday, January 5, 1944, at the age of 22

Seaman Bochkay was killed in England in line of duty, according to the Courier-News (Saturday, April 22, 1944).

Master Sergeant Alfred A. Borman
US Army -- Signal Corps
KIA: Wednesday, October 27, 1943, at the age of 24

Seaman Mauro Bruno
US Navy
KIA: Monday, October 16, 1950, at the age of 21 in Korea

Private First Class Anthony Capone
US Army
Headquarters 1st Battalion, 399th Infantry Regiment, 100th Infantry Division
KIA: Monday, December 28, 1942, at the age of 32

Technical Sergeant Louis E. Checchio
US Army -- Company B, 13th Infantry Regiment, 8th Infantry Division
KIA: Thursday, July 20, 1944, at the age of 25

Sergeant Nick D'Addamio
US Army -- 115th Infantry Regiment, 29th Infantry Division
Awarded the Purple Heart with Oak Leaf Cluster.
KIA: Friday, September 8, 1944

Sgt. D’Addamio perished at Guipavas, France, during the battle for the port of Brest in the campaign to liberate Northern France. 

Private Herbert Hodgson
US Army -- Company G, 311th Infantry Regiment, 78th Division
KIA: Tuesday, April 16, 1918, at the age of 22

Private James Hunter
US Army -- 10th Training Battalion, 153rd Brigade
KIA: Monday, September 30, 1918, at the age of 31

Private Leroy F Mack
Korean War
US Army -- Light Weapons Infantryman for Alpha Company, 1st Battalion, 5th Regimental Combat Team
Awarded Purple Heart
KIA: Monday, April 23, 1951, at the age of 23

Private First Class Carroll R. Meyer
US Marines -- 4th Marine Division Baker Co., 1st Battalion, 24th Regiment
DOB: March 25, 1922
Son of William and Grace Meyer
Awarded Purple Heart
KIA: Tuesday, February 1, 1944, at the age of 22

PFC Meyer perished on the island of Roi-Namur, Kwajalein Atoll, Marshall Islands

Sergeant First Class James C. Muir
US Army -- 85th Regiment of the 10th Mountain Infantry Division
Awarded Purple Heart
Son of Mr. and Mrs. Alexander Muir of E. Front St., Scotch Plains
KIA: Friday, February 23, 1945, at the age of 19

James Muir was president of the senior class at SPFHS in 1942 and was a student at Norwich University in Vermont when he enlisted in March 1943. He was also an outstanding high school athlete and served as a junior assistant scoutmaster of Boy Scout Troop 22. Sgt. Muir was killed by enemy artillery fire in combat fighting in the Appennine Mountains of Italy.

Private Anthony Perrucci
WWII -- 63rd Infantry Division
US Army
Awarded Purple Heart
KIA: Monday, March 19, 1945, at the age of 20

Second Lieutenant John J. Rau
US Army -- 723rd Bomber Squadron 450th Bomb Group US Army Air Forces
KIA: Friday, January 19, 1945, at the age of 27

Second Lt. Rau perished over Brod, Yugoslavia when the "Daisey Mae" B-24G he was aboard was hit by flak over the target and exploded. The only survivors were the pilot and flight engineer. The beautiful stained glass windows at All Saints Episcopal Church on Park Ave. were installed on May 26, 1946, in memory of Lt. Rau. 

Sergeant First Class Thomas Reiley
Korean War
US Army -- Radar Chief, Group  Headquarters Battery, 38th Field Artillery Battalion, 2nd Infantry Division
Awarded Prisoner of War Medal, Purple Heart
KIA: Saturday, December 23, 1950, at the age of 34

Master Sergeant Reiley was taken as a prisoner of war while fighting the enemy near Kunu-ri, North Korea on Nov. 30, 1950 and died while a POW on Dec. 23, 1950.

Private Henry L Siedentop Jr
US Army -- 737th Separate Tank Battalion
Awarded Purple Heart
KIA: Friday, November 17, 1944, at the age of 18

Corporal Andrew Smith
US Army -- 81st Tank Battalion, 5th Armored Division
KIA: Sunday, December 10, 1944, at the age of 20

Fireman Second Class Harry E. Stocker
US Navy
DOB: 1924
Son of Harry and Elizabeth Stocker
Awarded Purple Heart
KIA: Friday, August 7, 1942, at the age of 18

1st WWII Casualty from Scotch Plains. Buried at sea.

Sergeant Herbert Lewis Terry
KIA: Tuesday, September 24, 1918, at the age of 27

Private Lacy Tuck
US Army -- Battery D 350th Field Artillery
Son of Mrs. Lucy Tuck of Virgilina, VA
KIA: Tuesday, December 17, 1918, at the age of 23

Private Tuck served in Europe and was sent home to Scotch Plains. His cause of death was listed as "Broncho Pneumonia" in 1918. (He may have fallen to the Spanish Flu epidemic of 1918.)

Private Leonard M. Velard
US Army -- Coast Artillery Corps
DOB: July 27, 1923
SPFHS Class of 1941
Son of Michael and Margaret Velard of Morse Ave., Scotch Plains
KIA: Tuesday, January 16, 1945, at the age of 22 in WWII

Second Lieutenant Albert F. Von Block
US Army -- Second Lieutenant
133rd Infantry Regiment, 34th Infantry Division
Awarded Purple Heart
KIA: Monday, July 17, 1944, at the age of 22 is Scotch Plains-Fanwood’s only free daily local news source. Sign up for our free daily eNewsletter and “Like” us on Facebook and Twitter @SPF_TAP. Download the free TAPinto App for iPhone or Android.