New Jersey Department of Military and Veterans Affairs
DMAVA Highlights Archives

17 June 2005
Volume 4, Number 24


NJ Dept of Military and
Veterans Affairs

Maj Gen Glenn K. Rieth
The Adjutant General

Brig Gen Maria Falca-Dodson
Deputy Adjutant General

Col (Ret) Stephen G. Abel
Deputy Commissioner for Veterans Affairs


Contacting us is easy!

Office of the Assistant Commissioner

Col (Ret) Michael B. Smith

Mrs. Laura A. Branham

Phone: (609) 530-6987

Fax: (609) 530-7109


We're on the Web!




Veterans’ Organizations
Contact Information

State Veterans Service Council
Mr. Richard Clark

NJ Advisory Committee for Women Veterans
Mrs. Anna Hoffman

BG Willam C. Doyle Cemetery Advisory Council
Mr. William Rakestraw


Veterans Hotlines

Benefits & Entitlements

Mental Health


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

Credit Union of NJ
609-538-4061, ext. 401

First Morris Bank & Trust


Manasquan Savings Bank

North Jersey Federal
Credit Union

Peapack-Gladstone Bank
(908) 719-BANK

Pennsville National Bank


Sovereign Bank

Sun National Bank


Bank of America (Fleet Bank) is undergoing a system-wide change in their loan offerings and will no longer offer the New Jersey Freedom Loan.


Beach Passes for NGTC – Sea Girt for DMVA employees are now available.

Enjoy the sun. Have some fun.


Gail Miller – 6911


Jane Davis – 6910


"Everyday leave yourself some time to enjoy, be silly, to laugh."




Fathers Day - 19 June, 2005

Everyone can be a father, but it takes someone special to be a dad..

Merchant Marines Memorial Dedication

A ceremony was conducted on Saturday, 11 June 2005, to dedicate the Merchant Marine Veterans Memorial. The memorial, a 13-foot tall bronze propeller surrounded by benches and flagpoles, is located just north of the Battleship New Jersey in Wiggins Park, Camden. The program included a parade of tugboats, a restored Liberty Ship, the John W. Brown, and the Texas Clipper II, Texas Maritime Academy’s training ship. The keynote speaker was Rear Admiral (Ret) John Pickavance of the U.S. Navy. Vice Admiral Joseph Stewart, Superintendent of the U.S. Merchant Marine Academy served as the master of ceremonies. Brigadier General Frank Carlini, Deputy Commander, Joint Force Headquarters, represented the Adjutant General and read a letter to the Merchant Marine Veterans from Acting Governor Codey. The letter was presented to Charles Mardigian founder of the Merchant Marine Veterans of America. The Merchant Marines lost, proportionally, more personnel in World War II than any other uniformed services while providing the greatest sealift in history. Approximately 9,500 Merchant Marines were lost aboard the 865 ships sunk by the enemy. Oddly enough the World War II Merchant Mariners were not awarded veteran status until 1987.

Open House – 18 June 2005 -Toms River Armory - The Wolfpack is back from Iraq and so is the fun and excitement! Best of all, it’s FREE!

An Open House is scheduled at the Toms River Armory on Saturday, June 18, 2005, from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. The soldiers of Charlie Battery and Detachment 1 Service 3/112th FA are hosting the Open House, and with the assistance of the recruiters, are supporting the TAG’s Policy on “Strength Management.” There will be historical displays from the Revolutionary War to Operation Iraqi Freedom. For the children, there will be Hummer rides, camouflage face painting, paintball targets, a grenade toss, a child ID Program, and many other fun activities. There will also be prizes and give-aways. Refreshments will be available at low family prices!

The Open House will also provide an opportunity to showcase the facility to the public, and to let the community know that the facility is available for their use.

177th fighter wing recognizes a 5th grade class at Yorkshire Elementary School in Camden.

Members of the 177th fighter wing teamed up with representatives from Lt Gen James Director Air National Guard Bureau’s office to recognize a 5th grade class at Yorkshire Elementary school in Camden. In March 2004, the class along with their teacher Mrs. Repsher was engaged in discussions about the men and women who served in the military and the sacrifice they make. Each child in the class has a family member or knows someone who is in the Armed Forces. In order to show their appreciation for the sacrifice that military people make, they engaged in a letter writing campaign with Lt Gen James. Gen James was so moved by their letters he made arrangements to personally thank them. Members of his staff presented each child with a hand written note from him, a Certificate of Appreciation, a lapel pin and a coin. In addition, Lt Gen James’ office is working to officially adopt the school through the Adopt-A-School program.

NJ Department of Labor teams up with Teaneck Family Assistance Center.

The New Jersey Department of Labor and Workforce Development is teaming up with the Teaneck Family Assistance Center to provide all soldiers returning from deployment with the necessary information and tools to easily re-integrate into society. The Re-employment Opportunities briefing given by MSG (Ret) John Bautz will be held at the Teaneck Armory every Wednesday at 10 a.m. and again at 2 p.m.

If you have any questions regarding this briefing, contact MSG (Ret) Bautz at 201-996-8950 or email

The Division of Veterans Healthcare Services welcomes Katheryn Wierzbicki.

On 31 May, Kathy Wierzbicki joined the Division of Veterans Healthcare Services as Quality Assurance Coordinator. Kathy is a registered nurse with a background in ICU/CCU, the Emergency Room and hospital supervision. Welcome, Kathy!

Tricare Reserve Select

TRS is here! This new health plan, launched on April 26, 2005, provides eligible Reserve Component soldiers, and their families continued care through TRICARE. Soldiers called to active duty for more than 30 consecutive days in support of a contingency operation AFTER September 11, 2001 are eligible for this benefit. They must have served continuously on active duty for 90 days or more. This benefit includes coverage that is similar to the coverage available through TRICARE Standard and Extra for active duty family members. Contact SFC Josephine Grey, Chief of Health Services at 609-562-0865 or e-mail @ for more information on this program.

Sandy Cove offers a free stay for our military members & families at Operation Oasis on Chesapeake Bay.

Operation Oasis is an outreach program developed to offer a time of rest and renewal to military personnel involved in Operation Iraqi Freedom. Located in North East, Maryland, at the headwaters of the Chesapeake Bay, Operation Oasis offers a free 3-day, 2-night time of rest and relaxation. It is a thank you to those who seek to secure and sustain our freedom. Simply contact Carol Lee Lynch at or by phone at 800-287-4843 for additional information. You can also visit the website for a more detailed description of the facility.

Steve Braun Baseball Camp available FREE for children of deployed soldiers and airmen.

Former Major League Baseball player and retired Trenton Thunder coach, Steve Braun, will conduct a summer baseball camp on Saturday and Sunday, 16-17 July 2005. The two-day camp is provide free to children (male or female) of New Jersey National Guard soldiers or airmen who are, or have been, deployed overseas during the Global War on Terrorism.

Parents who wish to volunteer may note that on their child’s application or call Marie at 609-562-0739.

American Legion Riders Motorcycle Chapter Forming in River Edge, NJ

American Legion Post 226 is sponsoring an American Legion Riders chapter. You don’t have to be a direct member of Post 226, but you do have to be a member of the American Legion, Auxiliary or SAL and ride a motorcycle that’s at least 750cc or higher. If you or someone you know is interested in joining, there is a form on the Post 226 website, or you can call Jim Morton, the Post 226 American Legion Riders Director, Adjutant and webmaster at 201-439-0053.

Part-time opportunities in Military Funeral Honors Program.

The New Jersey Army National Guard Military Funeral Honors Program has several part-time employment opportunities immediately available across the state for TDGs and Technicians. Earn one day’s base pay and one retirement point for a few hours work providing Military Funeral Honors for our Veterans. If you are interested, please contact SFC Raymond Denson, Military Funeral Honors Coordinator, at 609-530-7090 or by e-mail at

Special Commissary Hours for 4th of July Weekend

The Commissary at Ft. Dix/McGuire will have the following operating hours for the 4th of July holiday.

· July 1, 0900 - 2000
· July 2, 0900 - 2000
· July 3, 1000 - 1900
· July 4, 1000 - 1600

Veterans to be honored at upcoming Medal Ceremonies.

The following ceremonies have been scheduled to honor our State’s veterans.

30 Jun  11am Distinguished and Meritorious Service Medal Toms River Elks
600 Washington Street
Toms River, NJ
1pm Vietnam Service Medal
14 Jul  11am Distinguished Service Medal Atlantic Cape Community College
5100 Black Horse Pike
Mays Landing, NJ
1pm Korean Service Medal
28 Jul  11am Distinguished Service Medal West Orange Armory
1299 Pleasant Valley Way
West Orange, NJ
1pm Korean Service Medal

Support the Troops

Here are some of the activities and fundraisers planned in support of our deployed troops and their families:

- Pancake Breakfast – 25 June 2005 . A Pancake Breakfast to benefit the 50th MSB Family Readiness Group is being sponsored by AMVETS Post 70 and will be held at the Post located at 528 Prospect Street, East Orange, NJ from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. on 25 June 2005. Donation for adults is $7 and children under 8 eat free. Contact SPC Luis Suero at 201-915-3591 for more information.

- Enlisted Council to hold golf tourney at Falcon Creek Golf Course in July. The 108th ARW Enlisted Council is holding its second annual Golf Outing on July 21, at the Falcon Creek Golf Course, McGuire Air Force Base. There will be a shotgun start at noon. The cost is $75 per individual or $280 for a foursome. This includes lunch, beverages, 18 holes of golf and a chance to win prizes. Proceeds from the tournament support the Freedom Alliance Scholarship fund. Contact Airman Dee Eggles at 609-754-4141 for more information and entry forms. Happy Golfing!

- Send coffee!! – The “Coffee Express” is on track! Time to start percolating and open the spigots all the way! The good news is that over 1500 pounds of coffee have been sent to the troops so far. The bad news is that they have drunk most of it. It’s time for a second cup. Join the “Coffee Express” – buy a pound or two of coffee and send it to one of the address shown belo3 or to the soldier of your choice at either unit. MAJ Mike Lyons, HHC 50th Main Support Battalion, FOB Speicher, APO AE 09393 or LTC John Nunn, HHC 42nd DISCOM, FOB Speicher, APO, AE 09393.

- Sign up for a chance to send your solider Dunkin Donuts coffee. Dunkin Donuts will send a case of free coffee to your soldier if he/she is among the 50 selected in a monthly lottery. Just go to, click on “About Us,” click on “Contact Us,” click on “Instore Visits,” fill out the form, in the comments section put the soldier’s rank, name and APO address, and say that you would like to send your soldier coffee. Then click “Submit.” You can mail a request to Dunkin Brands, 130 Royall Street, Camton, MA 02021, Attention Customer Care or request the coffee by phone at 781-737-3000 (Customer Relations).

- Operation Uplink. Visit to request free phone cards for active duty military personnel deployed away from home. At this site you can fill out a request for a phone card to be sent to yourself or a loved one. One card per request per servicemember will be honored during a 60-day period.

- Gifts from the Homefront. The “Gifts from the Homefront” program was begun last year by the Army and Air Force and enables people from all walks of life to rally around America’s troops by purchasing gift certificates designed to lift the morale of deployed troops around the world. The certificates, which can be purchased by any individual or civic organization, allow service members to purchase items of necessity and convenience at PX and BX facilities around the world. “Gifts from the Homefront” certificates can be addressed to “any service member” or individual service members. Because the gift certificates can be use for merchandise already stocked at contingency locations, “Gifts from the Homefront” are a safe alternative to traditional care packages that can strain the military mail system and present force protection issues. Those wishing to send a “Gift from the Homefront” can simply log on to the AAFES website,, or call 877-770-4438 toll-free to buy gift certificates in $10 or $20 denominations. From there, the “Gift from the Homefront” may be sent to an individual service member designed by the purchaser or distributed to “any service member” through the USO, American Red Cross, Air Force Aid Society, or Fisher House.

- Operation Mail Call. Operation Mail call is a program initiated by New Jersey Assemblymen Jack Conners and Herb Conaway that enables citizens to donate postage stamps for use by our troops and their families. Over 30,000 stamps have been donated to our National Guard soldiers and airmen and Family Readiness Programs. With Memorial Day 2005 approaching, we recall the unique sacrifices made by every generation that has served in uniform for the good of America. We are often asked what can be done to support the soldiers of this generation. If you would like to participate, please mail or drop off your postage stamps to the 7th Legislative District Office, Delran Professional Center, 8008 Route 130 North, Suite 125, Delran, NJ 08075.

- American Hero Band - The American Hero Band is a free wristband worn by Americans to demonstrate their support of the “Defenders of Freedom” who are Army National Guard soldiers deployed across the globe. Engraved on the metallic wristband are the words IN HONOR OF AN AMERICAN HERO SERVING IN THE ARMY NATIONAL GUARD. These words are flanked left by the Army National Guard logo and right by the American flag. There is also an inscription of the National Guard website, and a unique serial number engraved inside this commemorative wristband. If you are interested in getting The American Hero Band, go to and click on the American Hero Band banner.

- Special Father’s Day Deal: is providing a Father’s Day card service for troops and their families. This service is free for forward-deployed US troops serving in the Middle East and costs 99 cents for those assigned elsewhere. Military members and their families can visit the company’s website, select their greeting card online or create their own and add a personal note to the inside. To take advantage of the 99 cent offer, enter promotion code usdad99 at checkout.

Armory Happenings – Listed below are events taking place at your local armory.

Open House – 18 June 2005 -Toms River Armory - The Wolfpack is back from Iraq and so is the fun and excitement! Best of all, it’s FREE!

An Open House is scheduled at the Toms River Armory on Saturday, June 18, 2005, from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. The soldiers of Charlie Battery and Detachment 1 Service 3/112th FA are hosting the Open House, and with the assistance of the recruiters, are supporting the TAG’s Policy on “Strength Management.” There will be historical displays from the Revolutionary War to Operation Iraqi Freedom. For the children, there will be Hummer rides, camouflage face painting, paintball targets, a grenade toss, a child ID Program, and many other fun activities. There will also be prizes and give-aways. Refreshments will be available at low family prices!

The Open House will also provide an opportunity to showcase the facility to the public, and to let the community know that the facility is available for their use.

Date Event Location
18 June Dance Lawrenceville Armory
18 June Open House Toms River Armory
21 June Graduation Westfield Armory
24 June Bead Show Cherry Hill Armory
27 June Physical Training Teaneck Armory
28 June Pick-Up & Drop-Off Point for Camp Teaneck Armory

Fitness Corner – Ernie Razzano, Certified Fitness Trainer

Keeping Kids Fit

Yep, like it or not, school is almost out. I received a great request this week; how to keep kids in shape during the summer. This is a motivational challenge for both the parents and the child. Each child is different and will have different likes and dislikes within the realm of fitness. The challenge for most working parents is to find the time to take part in their child’s activity. That is, if they like swimming, getting them to the pool, or weightlifting, getting them to the gym. Find out what your child really enjoys and get involved. The key for them staying in shape during the summer is keeping them moving. The less time spent in front of the TV the better. Remember, they tend to eat more junk food while at home (if it’s available) than in school. One pound of fat contains 3500 calories. If your child consumes more calories than is expended for energy guess what! Some inexpensive ideas; evening walks/jogs, swimming, bike riding, roller-skating, yard work, etc. You may even consider enrolling your child in marital arts, gymnastics, dance lessons, personal training sessions, etc. Of course, you can mix things up to keep it interesting, which will lead to the child sticking with the program. How to proceed with a training regimen depends on the child’s age, current physical condition and motivation (yours too)!

Tell me what you would like to see in Fitness Corner. Write me at

Beach Passes for DMVA employees available now.

The temperatures are rising and the sandy beach at the National Guard Training Center at Sea Girt is calling. Call Gail Miller at 609-530-6911 for your Beach Pass.

On this day in history –

Today is Friday, June 17, 2005. It is the 168th day of the year with 197 days remaining.

1856 – The Republican Party opened its first national convention in Philadelphia.

1866 – The New York City Athletic Club was formed.

1885 – The Statue of Liberty arrived in New York City aboard the French ship Isere.

1928 – Amelia Earhart began the flight that made her the first woman to successfully fly across the Atlantic Ocean

1942 – Yank, a weekly magazine for the U.S. armed services, began publication. Dave Berger first used the term “G.I. Joe” in a comic strip.

1944 – The Republic of Iceland was established.

1950 – Dr. Richard H. Lawler performed the first kidney transplant in a 45-minute operation in Chicago.

1972 – Five men were arrested for burglarizing the Democratic Party Headquarters in the Watergate complex in Washington, DC. The men all worked for the reelection of President Nixon. The event was the beginning of the Watergate affair.

1994 – O.J. Simpson drove his Ford Bronco across Los Angeles with police in pursuit and millions of people watching live on TV. After the slow speed chase ended, Simpson was arrested and charged with the murders of Nicole Simpson and Ronald Goldman.

NJ Vietnam Veterans’ Memorial and Vietnam Era Educational Center’s upcoming event schedule.

18 Jun 10am - 4pm Military Vehicle Display
20 Aug 1 p.m. “The Nature of the Beast” (The true story of a combat Marine in the Vietnam Wary) – Author lecture by Vietnam Veteran Chuck Ketterman
10 Sep 1 p.m. “Between the Lines: Photographs from the National Vietnam Veterans Memorial” – Slide presentation and author lecture by Vietnam Veteran Thomas F. Morrissey.
16 Sep 11 a.m. POW/MIA Recognition Day and Gold Star Mothers Day ceremony

For more information about any of these events, please call the NJ Vietnam Veterans Memorial Foundation office at (732) 335-0033.

The Vietnam Era Educational Center is open Tuesday through Saturday, 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Regular admission 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. The Center is located adjacent to the NJ Vietnam Veterans’ Memorial off the Garden State Parkway at Exit 116.

Retirement Receptions planned.

Several of our Department’s employees will be retiring in the very near future. Listed below is the information on their planned receptions/dinners.

Retiree Reception Details Contact Person
CW3 SGM Michael Amoroso

Charleys Other Brother
20 June 2005, 1700 hours

SFC Denise Creary

Call today to volunteer at a Family Readiness Center near you.

If you are able to assist the families of our deployed soldiers and airmen, please call our Family Readiness Center at our toll-free number 888-859-0352.

Father’s Day – 19 June 2005

Father’s Day is celebrated on the 3rd Sunday in June. The idea for creating a day for children to honor their fathers began in Spokane, Washington. A woman by the name of Sonora Smart Dodd thought of the idea for Father’s Day while listening to a Mother’s Day sermon in 1909. Having been raised by her father after her mother died, Sonora wanted her father to know how special he was to her. Sonora’s father was born in June, so she chose to hold the first Father’s Day celebration in Spokane, Washington on the 19th of June, 1910. In 1924 President Calvin Coolidge proclaimed the third Sunday as Father’s Day. Roses are the Father’s Day flowers: red to be worn for a living father, and white if the father has died.

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