New Jersey Department of Military and Veterans Affairs
Veterans World War II Memorial at Veterans Park

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Vets to be honored as battle rages in Iraq
By Paul Mickle - Staff Writer - The Trentonian

Today is Veterans Day, which started with the armistice that ended WWI on the 11th hour of the 11th day of the 11th month in 1918.

Since then, America has fought in six other wars, including the conflict today in Iraq from which casualties continue to mount.

To honor veterans of military service past and present, ceremonies will be held today all across the region, including in Ewing, where Iraq war hero Joseph Nyzio will be feted.

Etched in stone, Nyzio’s name will be added to the Purple Hear walk at Ewing’s Gen. Betor Veterans Park behind the municipal complex this morning at 11.

A New Jersey National Guard member and Ewing High School graduate, 25-year-old Nyzio sustained a serious injury to his left eye and collarbone when his Humvee was attacked in eastern Baghdad in early June.

Nyzio, who is expected to attend today’s event, is slated for another operation on his injured eye later this year at the Walter Reed military hospital in Washington, said his mother, Barbara Nyzio.

Yesterday, a Commission of veterans unveiled the final design of the New Jersey WWII Memorial planned for the park across West State Street from the State House.

“This has been a four-year labor of love,” said Col. Stephen Abel, U.S. Army retired, deputy commissioner for veterans’ affairs.

“There is no more deserving group of veterans than this group from the greatest generation.”

The memorial’s designer, Robert Smith, was creator of New Jersey’s Korean War Memorial in Atlantic City and worked on the Columbine Memorial in Littleton, Colorado.

While those services were going on, Mercer County Executive Brian Hughes was in Hamilton dedicating a new five-unit residence for military veterans in need of housing help.

Today’s events come two days after New Jersey was told that an Army Reservist from Lumberton, Sgt. Brian Freeman Jr., was killed by a sniper in Baghdad.

They also come the day after the 229th anniversary of the U.S. Marine Corps, which these days is leading the military effort to take control of the rebellious Iraqi city of Fallujah.

In Hamilton, Mayor Glen Gilmore used Veterans Day to remind people about the township’s Internet-based yellow-ribbon campaign.

Anyone can sign on the township’s website, fill out a form and pledge their support for those in the military on an online yellow ribbon.

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