By Sibley Smith, New Jersey Vietnam Veterans Era Education Center
On May 7, the New Jersey Vietnam
Veteransí Memorial Foundation, with assistance
from the Department of Military
and Veterans Affairs, held its annual New
Jersey Vietnam Veterans Remembrance
Day ceremony at the New Jersey Vietnam
Veteransí Memorial in Holmdel.
Approximately 400 people attended
the commemorative event, which was
held in the Memorialís courtyard, surrounded
by the circular, black granite wall
bearing the names of 1,560 New
Jerseyans whose lives were lost in the
The ceremony began with a welcome address by
Beverly Fedorko-Ott, President of the New Jersey Vietnam
Veteransí Memorial Foundation. The colors were
posted by three color guard units, Chapter 800 of the
Vietnam Veterans of America, the North Jersey Chapter
of the 82nd Airborne Division Association, and Boy
Scout Troop 155 of Freehold. The invocation was given
by Joseph Formola, Chaplain of the New Jersey State
Council of the Vietnam Veterans of America. Remarks
were given by Congressman Scott Garrett (R., 5th
District), Director of Veteran Services Gary Englert
(NJ-DMVA), and New Jersey Governor Jon S. Corzine.
Wreaths were placed accompanied by music played
on bagpipes by Bernie Snyder of Forked River.
John F. McCourt, Director, Regional Office, Department
of Veterans Affairs (VA), served as the keynote
speaker. McCourt served in the Army from August
1967 until March 1969, including a 14-month tour of
duty in Vietnam. His awards and decorations include
the Combat Infantrymanís Badge, a Bronze Star for
meritorious service, and a Bronze Star for Valor. He
began his career with the VA in 1973 and was named
the Director of the Newark Regional Office in 2003.
It was announced that the New Jersey Vietnam Veteransí
Memorial Foundation recently added three more
names to the New Jersey Vietnam Veteransí Memorial, bringing the total of 1,560.
First Lieutenant Harold L. Cheadle Jr. of Millburn
served with the 1st Battalion, 9th Marines. He was
killed in action on August 23, 1968 in Quang Tri.
Second Lieutenant Robert H. Crum, Jr. of Essex
Fells served with the 1st Cavalry Divisionís 1st Battalion,
8th Cavalry and was killed in action on May 22,
1966 near Binh Dinh Province.
Private First Class Douglas J. Weiss of Upper
Saddle River served with the 1st Cavalry Divisionís
1st Battalion, 7th Cavalry. He was killed in action on
May 6, 1966 near Bong Son.
These names were added to the Memorial after
the Foundation was informed that the serviceman had
connections to New Jersey, but their military records
did not list the state as the home of record.
The New Jersey Vietnam Veteransí Memorial and
the Vietnam Era Educational Center are located on
the grounds of the PNC Bank Arts Center, at Exit 116
on the Garden State Parkway in Holmdel. The Memorial
is open 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. The Educational
Center is open Tuesday through Saturday, 10
a.m. - 4 p.m. Regular admission to the Center is free
for veterans and active-duty military personnel. Regular
adult admission is $4; student and senior citizen admission
is $2 and children under 10 are admitted free.