CEDAR GROVE, NJ - Panther Park will most likely be the location of a permanent memorial to Lt. Bill Fearon who passed away Dec. 28, 2016.
The idea of a memorial was first brought up at a Dec. 18 council staff meeting by Councilman Robbie Vargo. With the unanimous support of the council, Vargo moved forward to consult with Fearon's wife Janice Fearon and his children as to their thoughts on the memorial.
"They liked the idea of Panther Park for the memorial -- it's a place that means a lot to them. Bill was very involved in our rec programs and the family still uses Panther Park," Vargo explained. "Mr. Tucci, what is the process going forward? I would like to make sure that Janice and the family are involved in the process every step of the way."
Township Manager Tom Tucci explained that the next step would be to pick a location in Panther Park and decide what type of memorial the family wanted.
"We can go out there take a look around. I'd be happy to walk it with Janice and the council," Tucci said. "The only suggestion I would make would be to put it in a location with a lot of traffic so as many people as possible would see it."
Once the location and type of memorial is selected, Tucci said they would need a photo of Fearon so the company could do a mock up for the family to approve.
A long-time resident of Cedar Grove, Fearon was born in Kearny and served more than 20 years in the New Jersey State Police. He was diagnosed with a gliomablastoma brain tumor in May 2015 which is believed to be connected to his service at Ground Zero after the 9/11 attacks.
Fearon was also a dedicated volunteer in his community, earning the Cedar Grove Recreation Advisory Board Award in November of 2015 in recognition of the time he gave coaching and supporting the athletic and recreation programs in town.
TAPinto Verona/Cedar Grove is an online newspaper serving the Townships of Verona and Cedar Grove. TAPinto Verona/Cedar Grove is accredited by the New Jersey Press Association, and is a locally owned news organization serving the community.
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