New Jersey Legionnaire NJ Legionaire March 2017 : Page 1

WORLD’S LARGEST VETERANS’ ORGANIZATION VOLUME 33, NO. 1 New Jersey LEGIONNAIRE Official Publication of THE AMERICAN LEGION, DEPARTMENT OF NEW JERSEY Index Dept. Service Officer Column Fall Sweepstakes Winners Dates to Remember Tom Lowe Centennial Celebration Adjutant’s Column Page 3 3 2 3 TRENTON, NEW JERSEY MARCH 2017 Legislative Report 5 4 8 COMMANDER’S MESSAGE It is difficult to believe that the first half of the 2016/2017 Legion year has passed. These past six months I found it interesting and gratifying to see the variety of ways the Posts and Counties continue to promote our mission as outlined in the “Four Pillars”. Many of the events that I have been privileged to attend have been both emotional, and inspirational. They help to fulfill our responsibility to honor the deeds of past generations in order to inspire generations to come. Among these events are the various memorial, and POW/MIA services held throughout the state. Most recently many Legion posts participated in the National Wreaths Across America events which in spite of the weather were well attended and well received. During 2016 a lot of the news was devoted to ROGER GENGARO political discussion and debate at the federal, state, and local levels. Although as Legionnaires we must be nonpartisan we must also continue to work within the political process to advocate for our military, our veterans, children, and families, and Americanism. So it is important for us to maintain good relationships with our elected officials regardless of which party they represent. Looking toward the future, I have previously mentioned that it is necessary for our organization to remain current, and relevant. I believe that self-evaluation is the key to maintaining a strong and successful organization. Therefore, in the second half of my year as Commander I want to focus on a process of evaluation to highlight our strengths and improve on our shortcomings. In closing I would like to extend my sincere thanks to our Trenton and Newark office staffs and all of the Department Officers who have helped and supported me through the year. It was a particularly difficult year for the Trenton office because of the upheaval caused by the move, but they came through the ordeal like true professionals. I wish everyone a healthy, peaceful, and prosperous 2017. n Carrasco, Commander of Lodi Post 136 and Chairman of New Jersey Mission of Honor. The second medal was presented to Bob Salvini, Bergen County American Legion Commander and Past Commander of Rochelle Park Post 170. The third recipient was Donald Tretola, State Chairman New Jersey Employer Support of the Guard and Reserve. The ceremony was terrific with a flyover by a KC 135, two F16’s and two Blackhawks. The weather was perfect as well. Congratulations to all medal recipients, and a very well deserved honor. n American Legion Post 43 Supports the Troops By Dave Carey, Post Commander Our nation’s flag is a powerful symbol of pride to the American people but a flag that comes with a story behind it can mean so much more. American Legion Post 43 was recently recognized by the 361st Expeditionary Reconnaissance Squadron with an American flag flown on a combat mission and a certificate of appreciation for their efforts supporting the men and women of their unit with comfort packages from home provided through Post 43’s Hometowns for Heros project. There are various reasons aviators take a flag up with them on a mission says Commander Dave Carey. They may be patriotic. or sentimental but to me it provides a reminder that our military is fighting every day to protect, and preserve the freedoms our flag represents, freedoms that so many of us take for granted every day. The members of the Post 43 family were humbled by the recognition. “That those who already give so much would go out of their way to recognize our efforts, and build our morale is amazing” said Auxiliary President Mary Beth Valentino. American Legion Post 43 is continuing our service project called Hometowns for Heros. We want to make sure that every service member from our community knows we’re thinking of them, and missing them as they sacrifice for us by serving our country. Please let us know if you have a relative or friend who is serving. Please email Commander Dave Carey at post43nj@gmail.com with their address and let’s say “You’re Our Hometown Hero” with a special package. n BERGEN VETERANS HONORED PDC Frank Calandrillo, Editor On October 30, 2016 Governor Christie and AG Brigadier General Cunniff held the annual Military Review of the New Jersey National Guard. As part of that ceremony, they presented the New Jersey Civilian Commendation Service Medal to three individuals; two of whom were from Bergen County. The first Civilian Commendation Service Medal was presented to Francis

Commander’s Message

Roger Gengaro

It is difficult to believe that the first half of the 2016/2017 Legion year has passed. These past six months I found it interesting and gratifying to see the variety of ways the Posts and Counties continue to promote our mission as outlined in the “Four Pillars”. Many of the events that I have been privileged to attend have been both emotional, and inspirational. They help to fulfill our responsibility to honor the deeds of past generations in order to inspire generations to come. Among these events are the various memorial, and POW/MIA services held throughout the state. Most recently many Legion posts participated in the National Wreaths Across America events which in spite of the weather were well attended and well received.

During 2016 a lot of the news was devoted to political discussion and debate at the federal, state, and local levels. Although as Legionnaires we must be nonpartisan we must also continue to work within the political process to advocate for our military, our veterans, children, and families, and Americanism. So it is important for us to maintain good relationships with our elected officials regardless of which party they represent.

Looking toward the future, I have previously mentioned that it is necessary for our organization to remain current, and relevant. I believe that self-evaluation is the key to maintaining a strong and successful organization. Therefore, in the second half of my year as Commander I want to focus on a process of evaluation to highlight our strengths and improve on our shortcomings.

In closing I would like to extend my sincere thanks to our Trenton and Newark office staffs and all of the Department Officers who have helped and supported me through the year. It was a particularly difficult year for the Trenton office because of the upheaval caused by the move, but they came through the ordeal like true professionals.

I wish everyone a healthy, peaceful, and prosperous 2017.

Read the full article at http://www.evergreeneditions.com/article/Commander%E2%80%99s+Message/2716999/385707/article.html.

Bergen Veterans Honored

PDC Frank Calandrillo, Editor

On October 30, 2016 Governor Christie and AG Brigadier General Cunniff held the annual Military Review of the New Jersey National Guard.

As part of that ceremony, they presented the New Jersey Civilian Commendation Service Medal to three individuals; two of whom were from Bergen County. The first Civilian Commendation Service Medal was presented to Francis Carrasco, Commander of Lodi Post 136 and Chairman of New Jersey Mission of Honor. The second medal was presented to Bob Salvini, Bergen County American Legion Commander and Past Commander of Rochelle Park Post 170. The third recipient was Donald Tretola, State Chairman New Jersey Employer Support of the Guard and Reserve.

The ceremony was terrific with a flyover by a KC 135, two F16’s and two Blackhawks. The weather was perfect as well.

Congratulations to all medal recipients, and a very well deserved honor.

Read the full article at http://www.evergreeneditions.com/article/Bergen+Veterans+Honored/2717003/385707/article.html.

American Legion Post 43 Supports The Troops

Dave Carey

Our nation’s flag is a powerful symbol of pride to the American people but a flag that comes with a story behind it can mean so much more. American Legion Post 43 was recently recognized by the 361st Expeditionary Reconnaissance Squadron with an American flag flown on a combat mission and a certificate of appreciation for their efforts supporting the men and women of their unit with comfort packages from home provided through Post 43’s Hometowns for Heroes project. There are various reasons aviators take a flag up with them on a mission says Commander Dave Carey. They may be patriotic. Or sentimental but to me it provides a reminder that our military is fighting every day to protect, and preserve the freedoms our flag represents, freedoms that so many of us take for granted every day. The members of the Post 43 family were humbled by the recognition. “That those who already give so much would go out of their way to recognize our efforts, and build our morale is amazing” said Auxiliary President Mary Beth Valentino.

American Legion Post 43 is continuing our service project called Hometowns for Heroes. We want to make sure that every service member from our community knows we’re thinking of them, and missing them as they sacrifice for us by serving our country. Please let us know if you have a relative or friend who is serving. Please email Commander Dave Carey at post43nj@gmail.com with their address and let’s say “You’re Our Hometown Hero” with a special package.

Read the full article at http://www.evergreeneditions.com/article/American+Legion+Post+43+Supports+The+Troops/2717004/385707/article.html.

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