New Jersey Department of Military and Veterans Affairs
DMAVA Highlights Archives

2 July 2004
Volume 3, Number 26


NJ Dept of Military and
Veterans Affairs

BG Glenn K. Rieth
The Adjutant General

Brig Gen Maria Falca-Dodson
Deputy Adjutant General


Contacting us is easy!

Office of the Assistant Commisioner

COL (Ret) Michael B. Smith

Mrs. Laura A. Branham

Phone: (609) 530-6987

Fax: (609) 530-7109


We're on the Web!



Thought for the day…

“Is life so dear or peace so sweet as to be purchased at the price of chains and slavery? Forbid it, Almighty God!

I know not what course others may take, but as for me, give me liberty, or give me death!”

…Patrick Henry



New Jersey Freedom Loans

What is a Freedom Loan?

* Up to $10,000

* Annual APR 6%

* Term: 5 years (no pre-payment penalty)

* Unsecured Loan (no collateral required)

Who is eligible to apply?

NJ residents who are:

* Members of the National Guard or Reserve

* Mobilized for one year or longer to fight in the Global War on Terrorism (GWOT) – excluding routine training.


* Served 90 or more consecutive days in the GWOT on federal or state active duty (excluding routing training) and have received orders extending cumulative active duty a year or longer.

How do I apply?

* Contact participating banks. Call or visit your local branch office to obtain an application.

* Guardmembers, Reservists, or family members with Power of Attorney must submit copies of current mobilization orders with the bank’s Freedom Loan application.

Current participants:

- Commerce Bank

- First Morris Bank & Trust

- Fleet

- Manasquan Savings Bank

- North Jersey Federal Credit Union

- Peapack-Gladstone Bank
(908) 719-BANK

- Pennsville National Bank


- Sovereign Bank

- Sun National Bank

Veterans honored at Medal Ceremonies
Medal Ceremony Held in the Elks and VFW Hall in Orange, NJ - Approximately 134 veterans or surviving dependents were awarded the Distinguished Service Medal, Meritorious Service Medal, Vietnam Service Medal, and Korean Service Medal in a dual ceremony in Essex County on 6/30/04. CPT Patricia Richter, Veterans Benefits Bureau Chief presided over the ceremonies assisted by Karen Hansen. COL Edward Slavin served as the medal presenter at both ceremonies.

New Jersey Air National Guard Member Wins NCO Award
Congratulations to the 177th Fighter Wing Services Flight member SSgt Kenneth Johnson, who has been selected as the Air Force ARC (Air Reserve Component) Services Non-Commissioned Officer of the Year. This is an Air Force level award.

Unity Day Rescheduled
Unity Day has been rescheduled for Friday, 23 July 2004. It will take place at the Drill Floor in the HQ New Jersey National Guard at Fort Dix, NJ. The Fun Walk/ Run is at 0830 with the Presentation of Displays beginning at 1000 and ending at 1400. We will also have our 2nd Annual Chili Cook-off during the Celebration. If you are interested in the Cook-off please contact CW2 Garrison at 609-562-0281.

Officer Candidate School, Class 47 Graduation
OCS Class 47’s 30 graduates became second lieutenants on 27 June 2004 at Sea Girt, New Jersey. This class is the largest class to graduate OCS in many years. The ceremony was well attended by families, friends, and local government representatives. The Adjutant General BG Glenn K. Rieth spoke to the class and wished them well as they embarked on their new careers as officers. In addition to the OCS graduation, the second annual OCS Wall of Achievement induction ceremony took place. The OCS Wall of Achievement is bestowed to those New Jersey OCS graduates who attain the rank of Colonel and above. Five individuals were inducted and one honorary inductee was added to the Wall of Achievement. Inductees present at the ceremony were Col Robert A. Preston and Mrs. Christine Caruso who accepted COL Frank Caruso’s award on his behalf as he is currently deployed to Guantanamo Bay, Cuba. The Honorary inductee was COL Frank R. Carlini.

NJARNG OCS Class 47 Graduates:

2LT Nicole Blaine Savage 2LT Katie Boehly 2LT Avery Colon
2LT Jason Cornwell 2LT John Craddock 2LT Michael Cruz
2LT Anthony Defoe 2LT Felix Delacruz 2LT Gregory Backer
2LT John Ferrie 2LT Phillip Gerstenbluth 2LT Lyon Henry
2LT David Keffer 2LT Brian Konowitz 2LT Julian Leone
2LT Jared Liddell 2LT Troy Miles 2LT Jason Mull
2LT Johnny Ortega 2LT Eric Peduto 2LT Fabian Perez
2LT Kurt Perhach 2LT Thomas Pfeiffer 2LT Rene Roa
2LT Christopher Roche 2LT Gloria Sanchez 2LT Benjamin Schwedes
2LT Ismael Soler 2LT John Stadelman 2LT Michael Sterling

VSO Update
Our Veteran's Service Officers achieved the following in May 2004

1. Veterans seen at our offices, at outreaches, or in clinic visits. 2,954
2. Claims filed in May - new, appealed, and reopened. 403
3. Funds generated for NJ Veterans through claims filed previously. $5,754,321

Great News! Our VSO office is now officially open at the Ft. Monmouth clinic. Don McNamarra, VSO for Monmouth County will be there on Wednesday, 8:30 – 4:00. He can be reached at (732) 532-4500.

The Ironhorse Cavalry Motorcycle Riding Club joins the 3rd Battalion, 112th Field Artillery for a Family Readiness Group Fund Raiser.
A motorcycle “Poker Run” is scheduled as a Family Support fund raising event on 11 July 2004, with registration beginning at 9 a.m. at the Riverdale Armory, 107 Pompton Turnpike, Riverdale, NJ. Registration fee is $20 per rider, $10 per passenger, and $15 for non-riding personnel. Prizes will be awarded for the Top Two Hands, Oldest/Youngest Biker, Best Bike, Door Prizes, Food, Drinks, and Amusements. Point of contact for the event is 1SG Norman Zubick, 973-631-6280, or e-mail or visit their website at

New Jersey State Employees- Your Member Contribution in the PERS back to 5%
Effective June 26, 2004 (Pay Period #15) the member contribution rate for State Employees in the Public Employees' Retirement System (PERS) will return to the normal rate of 5%. The reductions in member rates for the PERS and TPAF were authorized by statute (N.J.S.A. 43:15A -24) and based on the existence of surplus pension assets in the retirement systems. Also, per statute, when there are no longer surplus pension assets, the member rate for PERS and/or TPAF members will return to the normal rate of 5%. Therefore, look for an adjustment in you paycheck on P/P #15, 2004

Army unveils new combat uniform.
The Army has produced and battle-tested more than 10,000 sets of its new Army Combat Uniform (ACU). Eighteen changes were made to the uniform, to include removing the color black and adapting the digital print from the Marine Corps uniform. The current colors are green and sandy brown. Patches, tabs and name tapes are affixed with Velcro, eliminating the cost of sewing them on. Soldiers can remove them before laundering, which will add to their lifecycle. The black beret will be the normal headgear, but a matching patrol cap may be worn at commander’s discretion. At $88 per uniform, about $30 more than the BDU, soldiers will eventually reap gains in money and time by not having to take uniforms to the cleaners or shine boots. The ACU will replace both versions of the BDU and the desert camouflage uniform. The Army expects to complete fielding of the ACU by December 2007.

Operation ‘Thank You’
The shore towns of Belmar, Manasquan and Sea Girt, will provide free beach admission during the 2004 season to each member of the New Jersey National Guard called to active duty and their dependents upon presentation of a valid military identification card at any beach entrance.

Gloucester County Veteran’s Fair held on Thursday 29 June 2004
Director of Veterans Programs (DVP), Bill Devereaux and Guy Weiner, DMAVA VSO, represented the Department at the event. Approximately 500 veterans and dependents were briefed on benefits and given the 2004 copy of the New Jersey Veterans Guide. The Vietnam Veterans of America of South Jersey assisted at the DVP booth.

U.S. Army Adds Microsoft Software
The Army Small Computer Program allows Soldiers and their families, National Guard members, Reservists and civilian employees to buy personal computers and software at discounted rates. On June 16, the ASCP added Microsoft software, including Microsoft Office 2003, Windows XP, FrontPage 2003 and Microsoft Publisher. Also available are Digital Image Pro, MS Press book, X-Box games, and fun and games software. ASCP also includes products from Apple, Dell, IBM, Hewlett Packard and Micron. Items available range from top-of-the-line desktops and notebooks to I-Pods, digital cameras and printers. For information about ordering through the ASCP, visit them on the web ( To participate, buyers need an AKO e-mail account and verification of being employed by the Army.

NJ Army National Guard’s 63rd Army Band announces its Summer Concert schedule.
The NJ Army National Guard’s 63rd Army Band will begin its summer concert series this weekend.

2 Jul, 7 p.m. Concert – Croydon Hall, Middletown

4 Jul, 7 p.m. Concert -- Toms River Library, Toms River

5 Jul, 10 a.m. Parade – 4th of July Parade, Ewing Township

6 Jul, 7 p.m. Concert – McLaughlin-Norcross Dell, Haddon Heights Park

8 Jul, 7 p.m. Concert – Laurence Harbor Beach Front

Amphitheatre dedicated at Menlo Park
The N.J. Veterans Memorial Home at Menlo Park dedicated the completed Orchestra Band Shell of the Amphitheater on Sunday, June 27, 2004. The Amphitheater was completed in the spring of 2004. It will be used for ceremonies and events to accommodate large groups of musicians and theatrical performers. The amphitheater will touch the lives of the many organizations that utilize it to bring that something "special” to our residents. Financial support for this structure was facilitated by the Veterans of Foreign Wars of the United States. Joseph Brandspiegel, CEO, welcomed over 200 invited guests who attended the ceremony on a beautiful sunny day. He thanked Manny Almeida, Past State VFW Commander and all Veterans Organizations who participated in this wonderful event. After the ceremony, all guests were invited to a delicious barbeque picnic that was enjoyed by all.

Veterans to be honored at upcoming Medal Ceremonies.
The following ceremonies have been scheduled to honor our State’s veterans.

15 July -
11 am & 1 pm
Distinguished & Meritorious Service (am)
Korean War Commemorative Medal (pm)
Athena Veterans Post
Clifton, NJ
28 July -
11 a.m.
Distinguished & Meritorious Service Medals Hackettstown Armory

NJ Vietnam Veterans’ Memorial and Vietnam Era Education Center’s upcoming event schedule.
For more information about any of these events, please call the NJ Vietnam Veterans Memorial Foundation office at (732) 335-0033.

17 Sep - 11 a.m.
National POW Recognition Day/Gold Star Mothers Day

11 Nov - 11 a.m.
Veterans Day Program

Today in History…
Today is Friday, July 2nd and the 184th day of the year. There are 183 days left in the year. On this day…

- 1566 – French astrologer, physician, and prophet Nostradamus died.

- 1776 – Richard Henry Lee’s resolution that the American colonies “are, and of right ought to be, free and independent States” was adopted by the Continental Congress.

- 1867 – First U.S. elevated railroad began service in New York City.

- 1926 – U.S. Army Air Corps created; Distinguish Flying Cross authorized.

- 1937 – American aviation pioneer Amelia Earhart disappeared in the Central Pacific during an attempt to fly around the world at the equator.

- 1947 – An object crashed near Roswell, NM. The U.S. Army Air Force insisted it was a weather balloon, but eyewitness accounts led to speculation that it might have been an alien spacecraft.

- 1957 – 1st submarine powered by liquid metal cooled reactor completed-The Seawolf. 1st submarine designed to fire guided missiles launched – The Grayback.

- 1964 – President Johnson signed the “Civil Rights Act of 1964” into law. The act made it illegal in the U.S. to discriminate against others because of their race.

- 1976 – North and South Vietnam were reunited.

- 1980 – President Jimmy Carter reinstated the draft.

Interesting things you may not know…
* Money isn’t made of paper; it’s made of cotton.

* The dot over the letter ‘i’ is called a “tittle.”

* Chocolate affects a dog’s heart and nervous system; a few ounces will kill a small sized dog.

* Donald Duck comics were banned from Finland because he doesn’t wear pants.

* Leonard da Vinci could write with one hand and draw with the other at the same time.

* There are no words in the dictionary that rhyme with orange, purple, and silver.

* If you have three quarters, four dimes, and four pennies, you have $1.19. You also have the largest amount of money in coins without being able to make change for a dollar.

* Because metal was scarce, the Oscars given out during World War II were made of wood.

101 Critical Days of Summer – Safe Grilling Tips
Liquid petroleum (LP) gas or propane, used in gas grills, is highly flammable. Each year about 30 people are injured as a result of gas grill fires and explosions. Many of these fires and explosions occur when consumers first use a grill that has been left idle for a period of time or just after refilling and reattaching the grill’s gas container. To reduce the risk of fire or explosion, consumers should routinely perform the following safety checks:

- Check the tubes that lead into the burner for any blockage from insects, spiders or food grease. Use a pipe cleaner or wire to clean blockage and push it through to the main part of the burner.

- Check grill hoses for cracking, brittleness, holes, and leaks. Make sure there are no sharp bends in the hose or tubing.

- Move gas hoses away from hot surfaces and dripping grease. If you can’t move the hoses, install a heat shield to protect them.

- Replace scratched or nicked connectors, which can eventually leak gas.

- Check for gas leaks, following the manufacturer’s instructions, if you smell gas or when you reconnect the grill to the LP gas container. If you detect a leak, immediately turn off the gas and don’t attempt to light the grill until the leak is fixed.

- Keep lighted cigarettes, matches, or open flames away from a leaking grill.

- Never use a gas grill indoors. Use the grill at least 10 feet away from your house or any building. Do not use the grill in a garage, breezeway, carport, porch, or under a surface that can catch fire.

- Always follow manufacturer’s instructions.

Family Appreciation Day –
Don’t forget to mark 21 August 2004 on your calendars – It’s Family Appreciation Day for all members of the New Jersey National Guard, employees of the Department of Military & Veterans, and their families. A day of fun in the sun is planned at the National Guard Training Center in Sea Girt.

Call today and volunteer to help at a Family Readiness Center near you.
As the New Jersey National Guard deploys soldiers and airmen around the globe, the families that are left behind need our support and assistance. Can we count on your help?

To reach any NJ National Guard Family Assistance Center –

Call toll free 888-859-0352


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