New Jersey Department of Military and Veterans Affairs

DMVA Highlights

21 November 2003

   Volume 2, Number 32

NJ Dept of Military and Veterans Affairs

BG Glenn K. Rieth

The Adjutant General

Col Maria Falca-Dodson

Deputy Adjutant General

COL (Ret) Emil H. Philibosian

Deputy Commissioner for Veterans   Affairs

Contacting us is easy!

Office of the

Joint Chief of Staff

COL (Ret) Michael B. Smith

Mrs. Laura A. Branham


(609) 530-6987


(609) 530-7109


We’re on the Web!

“Thanksgiving is a time when Americans celebrate the plentiful yield of our soil... the beauty of our land... the preservation of those ideals of liberty and justice that form the basis of our national life, and the hope of international peace.”

…Dwight D. Eisenhower


Calendar Notes…

Annual Gifts for Kids Drive

24 Nov - 8 Dec 03

DMVA Holiday Dinner

Friday, 12 Dec 03

Garden Room

Lawrenceville Armory

Make your reservation NLT 5 Dec 03


ChalleNGe Youth Program

Classes will begin in March, 2004. Info is available at:



The year has turned its circle,
The seasons come and go.
The harvest all is gathered in
And chilly north winds blow.
Orchards have shared their treasures,
The fields, their yellow grain,
So open wide the doorway ~
Thanksgiving comes again!


It is the Veteran,

Not the preacher,

Who has given us freedom of religion.

It is the Veteran,

Not the reporter,

Who has given us freedom of the press.

It is the Veteran,

Not the poet,

Who has given us freedom of speech

It is the Veteran,

Not the campus organizer

Who has given us freedom to assemble.

It is the Veteran,

Not the lawyer,

Who has given us the right to a fair trail.

It is the Veteran,

Not the politician,

Who has given us the right to vote.

Thanksgiving Day - November 27, 2003 - A brief history of the holiday.

The origin of Thanksgiving Day has been attributed to a thanksgiving festival held by Plymouth colony in December of 1621.  The idea of a day set apart to celebrate the completion of the harvest and to render homage to the Spirit who caused the fruits and crops to grow is ancient and universal.  The practice of designating a day of thanksgiving for specific spiritual or secular benefits has been followed in many countries.  From early colonial times, the various American colonies celebrated thanksgiving days in recognition of such happy events as good harvest and victories over the Indians.  One of the first proclamations was made in Charlestown, Massachusetts in 1676.  President George Washington issued the first Presidential thanksgiving proclamation in 1789 in honor of the new constitution.  During the 19th century an increasing number of states observed the day annually, each appointing its own day.  On October 3 1863, President Abraham Lincoln issued a presidential proclamation that appointed the last Thursday of November as Thanksgiving Day.  Each succeeding president made similar proclamations until Franklin D. Roosevelt, in 1939, appointed the third Thursday of November Thanksgiving Day.  Both Congress and the President changed this two years later to the fourth Thursday of November.  Thanksgiving Day is a day to express gratitude for our blessings and celebrate material bounty. 

Due to the holiday, DMVA Highlights will not be published next week.

Army Award for Maintenance Excellence (AAME) Program.

The New Jersey Army National Guard’s selection to participate in the Small TDA Category of the Army Award for Maintenance Excellence (AAME) Program, Region 1B, is OMS No. 25.  Located at the NJ National Guard Training Center, Sea Girt, NJ, OMS No. 25 is under the direct daily supervision of the Full Time Support Supervisor (FTSS), CW2 Douglas L. Hartley.  CW4 Frederick C. Menschner, J4-SMM-MR, will represent the NJARNG at the Region 1B evaluation board, to be conducted 24 November 2003.  Congratulations to CW2 Hartley, his Full Time Support Force (FTSF) and the Traditional Drilling Guardsmen from the 250th FSB, NJARNG, for a job well done!

Veterans Honored at Recent Ceremony.

BG Thomas J. Sullivan presented the New Jersey Distinguished Service and Meritorious Service Medals to 105 veterans at a ceremony held 19 November 2003 at the National Guard Armory in Westfield, New Jersey.  The medal recipients were veterans who had served in World War II, the Korean War, Vietnam War, Desert Storm and Operation Iraqi Freedom.  Special guests at the ceremony included Ms. Amanda Woloshen, representing Congressman Michael Ferguson.  Department representatives, COL (Ret) Emil Philibosian, Deputy Commissioner for Veterans Affairs, Ms. Karen Hansen, and Ms. Michele Johnson, assisted Master of Ceremonies CW5 (Ret) Robert Wimberly with the day’s program.

New "House Rules" developed at Veterans Memorial Home at Menlo Park

Mr. Joseph Brandspiegel, the new Chief Executive Officer at the Veterans Memorial Home at Menlo Park, has developed and instituted a set of terrific new “House Rules” for his facility.  The values and wisdom that are included in these “House Rules” can improve the work atmosphere and home life for each and every DMVA employee, no matter which facility or office they work in.



Treat each person you meet, as you would like to be treated.  This includes our residents, their families, friends, and your co-workers.


Respect a person’s privacy.  Knock as you enter a resident’s room.

Handle with Care

Imagine you are on the receiving end.  The patient could be your parent or spouse.

Take Time to Care

Make eye contact.  Smile.  Introduce yourself.  Call people by name.  The sweetest music to anyone’s ears is the sound of their own name.  Extend words of concern.  Caring is contagious.  There is nothing as nice as a cheerful word of greeting.

Be Helpful

Does someone look lost or confused?  Stop and try to help.  This includes visitors, family and/or friends.

Respond Quickly

Every minute is an hour when people are worried or sick or need assistance to the bathroom.

Explain What You Are Doing

People are always less anxious when they know what is happening.


Listen objectively in order to help with the person’s real need.


Noise annoys; it often shows a lack of consideration.

Look the Part

You are a health care professional – look professional.


Smiling is healthy for you and for all of those you serve and work with.  It takes 72 muscles to frown and only 14 to smile.  A big dose of patience and a dash of humility, and you will be rewarded many times over.


Be grateful for the opportunity to give.  Give and receive a hundredfold.  Speak and act as if everything you do gives you genuine pleasure.

Be Genuinely Interested in People

You can like almost anyone if you try.

Be Generous with Praise

Cautious with criticism.

Be Considerate of the Feelings of Others

There are usually three sides to a controversy: 

 Yours, the other fellow’s, and the right one.

Distinguished, Meritorious, and Vietnam Service Medal Presentation Ceremonies are scheduled.

17 December

11 a.m.

Distinguished Service Medal

Meritorious Service Medal

National Guard Armory

151 Eggert Crossing Rd., Lawrenceville, NJ

New Jersey National Guard Participates in a Gateway Exercise.

The New Jersey National Guard participated in a Gateway Exercise on November 15, 2003.  The 21st CST (Light), the Joint Operation Center in the Homeland Security Center of Excellence, and Task Force Alpha elements all responded in their lanes of responsibility to a simulated explosion and chemical release on the Port Authority docks in Newark.  There were over 600 total participants in the exercise from 70 federal, state, county, and local agencies.  The National Guard gained valuable  experience in our “on the street response” mission and in working within a unified command structure.

Desert Storm Veteran Speaks at Veterans Day Women's Luncheon

MAJ Denise K. McCleary was guest speaker at the Veterans Day Luncheon sponsored by Zonta International, Hackensack/Ridgewood Club, a professional woman’s group, and spoke about her Desert Storm/Gulf War experiences.  MAJ McCleary was a platoon leader for the Equipment Storage Platoon with the 144th Heavy Material Supply Company out of Hammonton.  She was mobilized in November of 1990 and served in Saudi Arabia until her return in September of 1991.  Luncheon guests included local members of the Veterans of Foreign Wars, Kiwanis, and Rotary Clubs.

The 63rd Army Band Schedules Holiday Concert

The New Jersey Army National Guard’s 63rd Army Band has scheduled a holiday concert for Saturday, 13 December 2003.  The concert will be held at the Expo Center, Ft. Monmouth, New Jersey, and will begin at 7 p.m.  If you have a valid military ID Card and DOD sticker, you will not need a parking pass.  If you do not have a valid military ID Card and DOD sticker, you must obtain a parking pass by calling 732-974-5963, not later than December 3, 2003, with your name and address.  Your pass will be sent directly to you.

The New Jersey Army National Guard (NJARNG) Welcomes Another New Warrant Officer Candidate.

LTC Deborah Allen, Commander of the 150th Forward Support Battalion (FSB) and LTC Roch Switlick, Commander of the 50th Main Support Battalion (MSB) joined forces last month to enable the accession of the NJARNG’s newest Technical Services Warrant Officer Candidate, WOC Manish Karnik, effective 30 October 2003.  WOC Karnik is a full-time technician at the Combined Support Maintenance Shop (CSMS-A) in Bordentown, New Jersey.  He will be assigned as an Electronic Systems Maintenance Technician in Company D of the MSB.  Candidate Karnik will attend the Pre-Warrant Officer Candidate Course at Fort Indiantown Gap, Pennsylvania, before attending Warrant Officer Basic Course at Fort Rucker, Alabama.  Following his initial appointment as a WO1, he will have two years to complete Warrant Officer Basic Course at Redstone Arsenal, Alabama, and at Fort Gordon, Georgia.

Time is Running Out for the Open Season for Federal Employees' Thrift Savings Plan (TSP) and Health Benefits.

Open season for TSP – October 15 to December 31.  Members can increase their contribution to 14% for FERS or 9% for CSRS and can change their distribution through HRO or on-line.  Those who are 50 or older and are contributing the maximum amount for which they are eligible can contribute an additional amount to the TSP from their pay.  For 2003, the maximum amount of “catch-up” you can contribute is $2000.  It will increase a thousand dollars every year until 2006.  For more information, members can go to 

Open season for Health Benefits and Flexible Spending Accounts runs from November 10 to December 8, during which time members can change health companies or change coverage.  The Federal Flexible Spending Plan (FedFlex) enables eligible employees to pay for certain benefits with pre-tax dollars.  Employees can set up a health care FSA to use for out-of-pocket costs, including co-payments and deductibles and for health care expenses not covered by insurance, such as dental services and eye-care.  An account can also be set up for dependent-care expenses for children and aging parents.  Go to for more information.

Armed Forces Value Card Offered at Killington Ski Resort.

The Armed Forces Value Card allows participants to purchase Killington lift tickets for $39 a day – a daily savings of up to $26.  Active duty, Reserve, National Guard and retired members of the Armed Forces are eligible to participate in this program.  The card is available at no cost and can be obtained at the Guest Services Desk (located in all of the Killington/Pico base lodges).  All you need to do is present your military ID, complete the application, and your card will be issued while you wait.

Air Force Research Lab Kicks off 3rd Annual Wright Scholar Research Assistant Program.

The Air Force Research Laboratory Propulsion Directorate officials are kicking off the 3rd Annual Wright Scholar Research Assistant Program for summer 2004.  High school juniors and seniors can now apply for the opportunity to work hands-on research, while under the guidance of science and engineering mentors.  This program also gives students an up-close look at Air Force careers and educational opportunities.  Application deadline is January 16, 2004.  For instructions on how to apply for this program and more information, visit

NJ Vietnam Veterans' Memorial and Vietnam Era Education Center Announces its Calendar of Events.

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

13 Dec

3 p.m.

Author Lana Noone will discuss her book, Global Mom:  Notes From a Pioneer Adoptive Family.

13 Dec

6 p.m.

Holiday Lighting Ceremony will include lighting of the tree and menorah, and a reading on Kwanza.  A memorial service and wreath laying ceremony will follow.

28 Feb 04

1 p.m.

Vietnam-era veteran, Gerald R. Gioglio will discuss his book, Days of Decision:  An Oral History of Conscientious Objectors in the Military During the Vietnam War.

Today in History…

Today is Friday, November 21st, the 325th day of 2003. There are 40 days left in the year.   On this day…

J          1877 – Thomas Edison announced the invention of the phonograph.

J          1934 – The New York Yankees purchased the contract of Joe DiMaggio from the San Francisco Seals of the Pacific Coast League.

J          1964 – World’s longest suspension bridge “Verrazano Narrows” opens (NYC).

J          1980 – 83 million viewers tuned in to find out “who shot JR” on the CBS show “Dallas.”  Kristin was the character that fired the gun.

J          1993 – U.S. House of Representatives voted against making the District of Columbia the 51st state.

J          2000 – Florida Supreme Court granted Al Gore’s request to keep the presidential recounts going.

Armory Happenings – Check to see what’s happening at an Armory near you.

21 November

Boxing Match Benefit

Westfield Armory

21-23 November

“Home for the Holidays” Gift Fair

Morristown Armory

22-23 November

Sports Card Show

11 a.m. – Mickey Rivers (NY Yankees) will sign autographs ($10 each)

Bordentown Armory

30 November

Toy Show

Freehold Armory

12-14 December

Craft Show and Sale

Morristown Armory

14 December

Nascar Collectibles Show

Bordentown Armory

26-28 December

Wrestling Tournament

Teaneck Armory

28 December

Sports Card & Comics Show

Bordentown Armory

Turkey Trivia 

J          America’s first Thanksgiving celebration was held in 1621.

J          The Wampanoag tribe celebrated the first Thanksgiving with the colonists.

J          Turkeys were first domesticated in Mexico and Central America.

J          Benjamin Franklin lobbied to make the turkey the national symbol.

J          A mature turkey has 3,500 feathers.

J          Wild turkeys can run 25 miles per hour, and fly up to 55 miles per hour.

J          90% of American homes serve turkey on Thanksgiving, and 50% of Americans eat turkey on Christmas.

Why do turkeys always gobble, gobble?

Because they never learned good table manners.




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