New Jersey Department of Military and Veterans Affairs
DMAVA Highlights Archives

23 November 2005

Volume 4, Number 47


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



Words of Wisdom

"Not what we say about our blessings, but how we use them, is a true measure of our Thanksgiving."

- W. T. Purkiser


Annual Coat Drive is a great success!!

Special thanks to all of DMVA’s employees who donated coats for our annual drive.

This year we collected 113 coats along with numerous hats, gloves, and scarves, which will be delivered to local soup kitchens and shelters.

Thank you for your generosity.

Laura Branham
Terry Dearden

Coat Drive Chairpersons







The Adjutant General’s Holiday Message:

Dear Fellow Employees, Guardsmen and Veterans:

Even before America was established, the tradition of Thanksgiving was one of our most important holidays. It has come to represent the very character of what it truly means to be an American. Thanks for a good harvest, appreciation for the many gifts we enjoy, and sharing what we have with others who might not have been as blessed. It also symbolizes a coming together of different people in a common cause … and in so many ways, we are reminded of Thanksgiving when we see the images of the victims of Hurricane Katrina, Hurricane Rita, and other calamities that affected so many of our fellow citizens.

Many of those devastated by the brutal onslaught of flood and storm are part of our extended National Guard family. The thousands of Guardsmen and women from Mississippi, Alabama, and Louisiana deployed overseas in support of Operations Iraqi Freedom and Enduring Freedom were not spared from the massive destruction that overwhelmed the Gulf Coast area. Neither were their families spared. I’ve always said we in the Guard are family … and that extends to our brother and sister Guardsmen who were victims of the two worst storms to hit North America in decades. Just as people from across the country responded so generously in the days following September 11th, it’s been heartwarming to see the overwhelming outpouring of response to the people of New Orleans and the tens of thousands of others throughout the storm-ravaged areas.

I’m especially proud of our own Guard family. In both the response to these latest emergencies and throughout the past year in support of our Family Programs, Support the Troops efforts, veterans programs, and Youth Camp, literally hundreds of people volunteered and went the extra mile and in many cases, went extra miles to help.

We in New Jersey have been extremely fortunate. We’ve received tremendous support from federal, state, and local government, the corporate-business community, service organizations, veterans groups, private citizens, retirees, and from so many within our own organization. Our mobilized and deployed troops and our military families all have benefited greatly from the generosity, efforts, and energy of all these good friends and neighbors. And what could be more appropriate as we prepare to celebrate the annual Thanksgiving, Christmas, Chanukah, Ramadan and Kwanza holidays than to recognize and applaud this unequalled and sustained level of generosity, compassion, and humanity. The Guard is about family, friends, and sharing. This year, as we count our blessings, we have so very much for which to be thankful.

I thank each and every one of you for all you do for our Guard family, our local communities, our state, and our great country. You’ve made many sacrifices and continue to make many important contributions. You are indeed, the epitome of the citizen-soldier … you truly, have made a difference. Linda and I and the entire Rieth family wish you and your families a warm, wonderful, and happy holiday season and may the New Year bring only peace, joy, and continued good health.

May God bless you, keep you safe, and may God bless America.


Glenn K. Rieth
Major General, NJARNG
The Adjutant General

A Welcome Home celebration in Hammonton greets returning soldiers.

Members of the 119th Corps Support Battalion, returning from a successful 12-month deployment in Iraq, were welcomed home by family, friends, and the community of Hammonton, New Jersey in a moving and patriotic ceremony held Monday at St. Joseph’s High School. Hammonton Mayor Anthony Ingemi commended the troops for their dedication and said, “Hammonton has always taken great pride in the Guard unit.” While deployed, the Battalion was responsible for providing logistical support to units in its area of operation. During the 12-month period, 17 subordinate units were assigned to the battalion, including Active Duty, National Guard and Reserve Component units.

DMVA continues to welcome home its heroes!

Welcome home to the following units and soldiers of the NJ Army National Guard: 150th Finance Detachment, 350th Finance Detachment and Detachment 2 of the 42nd MP Company, came home last week from a year in Iraq. Two weeks ago we welcomed the 42nd DISCOM, 50th Main Support Battalion, 150th GSAB, 642nd DASB, and 250th Signal Battalion, who also returned from a year in Iraq. This week we will continue to welcome home soldiers from New Jersey as they return from theater and from the demobilization process, as the 119th Corps Support Battalion and additional soldiers from the 250th Signal Battalion return through Joint Force Headquarters for reconstitution.

We look forward to the return of the remaining troops from these units who remained behind in Iraq in order to expedite the smooth return of the personnel in the main bodies of their units and the return of their equipment. Collectively known as Task Force Exodus and commanded by BG Sullivan, we will welcome them home in the December-January timeframe.

Annual Gifts for Kids 2005 Holiday Drive is underway.

The annual Gifts for Kids Holiday Drive has begun, and will run through December 8th. Gifts are needed for all ages, however, the greatest need each year is for children ages 10-17.

New/unwrapped toys/gifts should be placed in the collection boxes located in many of our facilities. If you have any questions, please call Laura Branham or Terry Dearden at 609-530-6987/6893.

Toys R Us plans Military Appreciation Weekend.

Toys “R” Us cordially invites you to a Military Appreciation Weekend on Saturday and Sunday, December 3-4, 2005. On Sunday, 4 December 2005, from 6-8 p.m., all Toys R Us stores will close their doors to the public to allow the Military and their families to enjoy a private shopping evening! The families can participate in games, activities, and meet Geoffrey the Giraffe! Contact Al Granda or Tina Matreale (609) 625-3666 for more details. or

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

17 Dec, 6pm
Holiday Lighting Ceremony

21 Jan, 1 p.m.
"The Khe Sanh Veterans Book of Poetry" - Written by veterans of the Battle of Khe Sanh during the 1968 Tet Offensive of the Vietnam War, these are about Khe Sanh, the war, friends, and the aftermath of war. Poetry reading and author lecture by a contributor, Khe Sanh Vietnam Veteran Joe Belardo.

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 located adjacent to the NJ Vietnam Veterans’ Memorial off the Garden State Parkway at Exit 116.

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 SGM Edward Goetschius, Military Funeral Honors Coordinator, at 609-530-7090 or by e-mail at

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

Date/Time Event Location
25-27 Nov (9am-4pm) Craft Show Freehold
27 Nov & 18 Dec (8:30am-2pm) NASCAR Collectibles Bordentown
3 Dec (8:30am-4pm) Coin Operated Arcade Game Auction Cherry Hill

Fitness Corner– Ernie Razzano, Certified Fitness Trainer,

The Importance of Consuming Water

Water is the most abundant substance in your body. It makes up 55-75% of your total body weight. The kidneys need plenty of water to function. If the kidneys are water deprived, then the liver will take on their work along with its own, thus lowering the liver’s total productivity. As a result, fat will not metabolize as quickly or efficiently as it could when the kidneys are pulling their own weight. If you allow this to happen, then not only are you being unfair to your liver, but you are also setting yourself up to store fat.

A reduction in water means more concentrated blood. A loss of only five percent body water results in a ten percent loss of water from your blood. The thicker the blood, the more susceptible your body is to clotting, and the less efficient it becomes at delivering oxygen to your brain and muscles. It also becomes harder to transport substances to and from your various tissues.

The trigger for the sensations of thirst and hunger are felt in the same area. It’s easy to confuse the two signals and to think we are hungry when we are actually thirsty. The best way to separate the sensation of thirst from that of hunger is to drink water before eating food.

So there are two ways that proper hydration helps us lose weight:

1. It optimizes liver function so that it can metabolize fat; and,
2. It helps prevent excess food consumption by satisfying a sensation often confused with hunger.

Trenton Titans ice hockey team will salute Veterans at their game against the Long Beach Ice Dogs on December 7, 2005.

Be part of a special evening as the Trenton Titans offer a special night of fun, affordable family entertainment in a Salute to Veterans! Discounted tickets are being offered for lower bowl seats that will let you see every shot, save, and score at great savings. Discount food coupons are also available. Come out and see the New Jersey National Guard ChalleNGe Youth Program present the colors. For more information, call Ed Levin at (609) 599-9500, ext 135.

Today is Wednesday, 23 November 2005. It is the 327th day of the year with 38 days remaining.

On this day in history…

1785 – John Hancock was elected president of the Continental Congress for the second time.

1889 – The first jukebox was played in San Francisco at the Palais Royale Saloon.

1909 – The Wright brothers formed a corporation for the commercial manufacture of their airplanes.

1919 – The first play-by-play football game radio broadcast took place during the Texas A&M vs. Texas game.

1942 – The Coast Guard Woman’s Auxiliary was authorized.

1945 – Wartime rationing of food, particularly meat and butter, was ended in the U.S.

1963 – President Kennedy’s body lay in repose in the East Room of the White House.

1971 – The People’s Republic of China was seated in the United Nations Security Council.

The United Nations’ war crimes tribunal said it would put former Yugoslav President Slobodan Milosevic on trial for genocide in Bosnia.

Military postal agency offers holiday mailing advice.

“Pack it well” and “mail it early” are two tips a military postal official offered for holiday mail being sent to servicemembers overseas. The Defense Department recommended the following mailing deadlines:

November 12 was the deadline for parcel post items headed overseas to APO and FPO ZIP codes.

Deadlines for other mail classes continue with:

* November 26 for space-available mail

* December 3 for parcel-airlift mail

* December 10 for priority mail

* December 19 for express mail.

Here are additional mailing tips:

* Use nylon or reinforced packing tape on packages because other tapes tend to come off

* Buzzing, ticking, or vibrating items will be “red flagged.” Remove batteries from electronics.

* Fill out customs labels completely.

* Use proper military address to help move the package through the system.

* Boxes with hazardous substance or alcohol markings won’t make it through the system.

* Boxes should be strong and well-packed because of the long distances traveled and the high volume of packages moving with them.

Individuals who may not personally know a servicemember overseas, but want to share the holiday spirit should visit the website.

How much do you know about Thanksgiving?

When was the first Thanksgiving celebration held?
The Plymouth Pilgrims held their first Thanksgiving celebration in the fall of 1621.

What was the reason for holding a Thanksgiving celebration?
On December 11, 1620 the first Pilgrims (or Puritans, as they were initially known) landed at Plymouth Rock. By the fall of 1621, of the hundred or so passengers who had sailed on the Mayflower, only half were still alive. (Of these, only four were adult women and almost forty percent were children.) The survivors, thankful to be still alive, decided to give a feast.

What was the name of the Wampanoag chief that was invited to the first Thanksgiving feast?
His name was Massasoit. Some ninety Wampanoag tribesmen were present at the feast.

What was the name of the Pilgrim leader who invited the neighboring Wampanoag to the first Thanksgiving?
It was Governor William Bradford who invited them. The reason they were invited is because they were the ones who taught the Pilgrims to cultivate the land, thus making it possible for them to survive.

How long did the first Thanksgiving celebration last?
It lasted three days (the celebration consisted of games as well as food).

Which president proclaimed the first "National Day of Thanksgiving"?
George Washington (in 1789 and then again in 1795).

Even though Thanksgiving was observed most years, it was not an official holiday. What is the name of the woman credited with making Thanksgiving a national holiday?
Sarah Josepha Hale, a magazine editor. She began her Thanksgiving campaign in 1827.

Which president made Washington's "National Day of Thanksgiving" a national holiday?
On October 3, 1863 Abraham Lincoln issued a "Thanksgiving Proclamation" that made the last Thursday in November a national holiday. (Before that, the president had to make an annual proclamation naming the day when Thanksgiving was going to be held.)

Who was the last president to change the date of the Thanksgiving holiday?
President Franklin D. Roosevelt changed Thanksgiving to the Thursday before last (the reason was to make the Christmas shopping season longer and thus stimulate the economy).

What happened in 1941?
Congress passed an official proclamation naming Thanksgiving a legal holiday to be observed, from that date forward, on the fourth Thursday in November.

Last but not least...

Who wanted to make the turkey the national bird of the United States of America?
Benjamin Franklin, but he was opposed by Thomas Jefferson. Legend has it that Franklin then named the male turkey a "tom turkey" to spite Jefferson. (The female is called a "hen turkey" and the baby a "poult.")

What part of the turkey is used in a good luck ritual?
The wishbone.

What drink did the Puritans bring with them in the Mayflower?

Enjoy your holiday…. Happy Thanksgiving!


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