FAIRFIELD, NJ — On an overcast Friday, Sept. 11 morning, Fairfield Township Police Chief Anthony Manna lowered the flag to half-staff in remembrance of those who died on this day 19 years ago. 

Fairfield Township Mayor James Gasparini and members of the council, along with members of the Fairfield Township Police and Fire Departments, solemnly remembered the events of that day in their annual memorial service at the memorial garden on the front lawn of town hall.

Gasparini said, “This is a chance for our community to come together to remember those who lost their lives on 9/11 and also to pay tribute to the first responders who put their lives on the line every day, everywhere, on our behalf.”

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Gasparini stated that the township will always remember the lives lost nineteen years ago on this day, “especially one of our own, John P. Salamone.” 

Salamone was 37 years old, had a wife, Mary Ellen, and three children, Alex, 6, Aidan, 4 and Anna, 3. He brokered preferred stocks for Cantor Fitzgerald. Salamone was a graduate of West Essex High School.

“We must remember also the lives that are still being invested in the cause of liberty. Today, in a special way, we need to remember the young men and women who are still serving their country,” said the mayor.

Gasparini led the crowd in a moment of silence “to pay tribute to the victims, heroes, and those still serving their country.”

Steve Filipow, a long-time Fairfield resident, remembers Salamone. He told TAP, “John lived down the street from us on Henrietta Drive. There were five children in his family. I went to school with John, and we went to West Essex High School together. I remember that he had a passion for soccer. Today is a one of sadness and fond memories of John and his family.

Filipow has other memories of 9/11. One of his colleagues at Warner-Lambert, Joe DeLuca and his fiancee, were on Flight 93 going to San Francisco to get married. “This was a heart break for sure,” said Filipow. United Airlines Flight 93 was a domestic passenger flight that was hijacked on 9/11. It crashed into a field in Somerset County in Pennsylvania. All 44 passengers died.

Filipow was scheduled to fly that day to Tampa, Florida for a work conference. The flight was cancelled due to the terrorist attacks, but Filipow kept his ticket in memory of that day for ten years. He eventually threw out the ticket, but he will never forget this day.