Belleville, NJ — US Marine Corp Pfc. Donald Sanders of Belleville. Marine Corps Pfc. Nutley’s Richard Bates. Marine Corps Lance Cpl. Paul Christmas in North Carolina. Marine Corps Lance Cpl. Edwin Aponte of Puerto Rico. A dozen other US Marines. 15 US Army personnel. Two U.S. Navy sailors. and U.S. Air Force Staff Sergeant. What do Calvin Alexander of Virginia have in common?They were all killed in action in Vietnam and are buried next to him in Row F in Bloomfield’s Glendale Cemetery.
Each year, the Belleville Historical Society’s Across America Leasing Project, which lays wreaths on the graves of veterans buried in local cemeteries, includes a visit to the Veterans Section of the Glendale Cemetery, where Belleville and Nutley’s 15 Dedicate 15 wreaths on the grave of a young man. He died in World War II and the Vietnam War.
A large number of volunteers gathered for the event on Saturday, December 17th. At noon, before heading to Glendale Cemetery, locals gathered at St. Peter’s Rome His Catholic Church in Belleville to bless the Reverend Ivan Sibelas with his 100 wreaths before being placed in the churchyard. did.
Anthony Buccino, author of Nutley, spoke briefly about veterans and the need to remember those lost in war. The first wreath was placed on his Pvt grave of a World War I soldier and close friend. Michael Flynn and Pvt. Edward Crowell, who disappeared during the war and was buried side by side in the cemetery. Members of the newly formed Belleville ROTC laid a wreath at the memorial to the Medal of Honor recipient Sgt. Fred Stockham from Belleville, who also lost his life in World War I.
Volunteers at the ceremony included Belleville veterans led by the American Legion Post 105 Cmdr. Joseph Kobianchi, Belleville Mayor Michael Melham, Alderman Vincent Cozarelli, School Board member Frank Velez, and former School Board members Michael Sheldon and Nelson Berera. Belleville and his Bloomfield boys, his scouts, Nutley High School’s head of football, his coach, his JD Vick, and students also joined in helping set up the wreath. The Bloomfield Scouts then proceeded to lay the wreath at Newark’s Mount Olivet Cemetery, and Nutley’s students subsequently laid the wreath at the cemeteries of the Vincent United Methodist Church and the Franklin Reformed Church, both in Nutley. deployed.
At 1:30 p.m., volunteers gathered in the veteran section of the Glendale Cemetery to lay numerous wreaths on the graves of young men who died in action. The Society usually dedicates 15 of his wreaths to Glendale, but this year the Society had great support, with 50 sponsors to lay the wreaths at the cemetery. The Belleville Historical Society recently cleaned an entire row of tombstones of his 35 young men killed in Vietnam. Veterans again joined the Boy Scouts and Bloomfield Girl Scouts, along with a large contingent of Pfizer employees who sponsored many of the wreaths. played.
The two ceremonies were the beginning of a three-day process in which members of the Belleville Historical Society traveled to lay wreaths at more than 15 cemeteries in six northern New Jersey counties. There, the young men of Belleville and Natry who had been killed in action were buried. About 350 wreaths were set this year, according to Michael Perrone, president of the Belleville Historical Society. The Belleville Historical Society lays wreaths on the graves of ten Medal of Honor recipients.
Photo credit: Michael Perrone