Battleship New Jersey commemorates Pearl Harbor Day (PHOTOS)
On December 7, 1941, the US Naval Base at Pearl Harbor, in then Hawaii, was attacked by 353 Imperial Japanese Navy Air Service aircraft in a surprise military strike, killing 2,403 military personnel. and civilians.
And even 80 years later, across the country, the day lives in infamy and those who died are not forgotten.
On Tuesday, a Pearl Harbor Day commemoration was held aboard the Battleship New Jersey, “to honor the survivors of Pearl Harbor and all of the veterans who served and lost their lives protecting our great nation.”
The ceremony was presented by the Camden County Council of Commissioners and the Gloucester County Council of Commissioners.
Camden County Commissioner Melinda Kane said: “How lucky we feel to have Battleship New Jersey here so we can come together that day.
“Not everyone has this opportunity to mark this solemn anniversary aboard a battleship of historic significance.”
After a speaker program, Kane and veteran Bernie Kofoet, American Legion member FW Grigg Post # 68, threw a commemorative wreath in the Delaware River off the branch of the 887-foot-long Iowa-class battleship and 45,000 tonnes, which is permanently moored in Camden as a museum and memorial.
Kofoet, who is the new commander of the Camden County Veterans Advisory Committee, received the Reverend Peter A. Molnar Medal, which is presented annually during the Pearl Harbor ceremony to someone who has been significantly involved in veterans’ activities in the county and across the state.
Pending his new post, which he will assume on Wednesday evening, Kofoet says he has some ideas and hopes to move the committee forward, continuing his personal mission.
“We mustn’t forget our vets today,” he said after the program, “especially in Camden County. There are over 23,000 veterans in Camden County. make sure they get the services they need.
Kofoet said he also recognizes the role ceremonies play in helping veterans and their families feel supported. He indicated by way of example, the Harleigh Cemetery, a historic rural cemetery located in Collingswood and Camden.
“Last year there was no Christmas wreath laying ceremony … and I hope the committee can make it a project and next year we can place a wreath on each This cemetery’s grave for all Camden County veterans. who are buried there, therefore, we look forward to the future.
The Camden County Veterans Advisory Committee is made up of 18 different military organizations and Kofoet says he sees his mission as “to bring these people together.”
Several members of the veterans support organization Warriors Watch Riders were present.
“I am here to honor my son and all of his shipmates who are still on board (the USS Pearl Harbor),” said Lisa Marie Brunner, of South Hampton, an American. Gold star mom from EN-3 Benjamin Allen, who was a mechanic aboard the USS Pearl Harbor in San Diego.
“My son passed away in 2019 and all of his teammates, shipmates, captains, were so nice to me when it all happened.
“Memorize this day and remember the young men and women who still serve. “
John Stanz and the Eastern High School Band contributed music during the program including a “Medley of the Military Hymns” to close the program and the 1775 Marine Corps League Detachment presented the colors and saluted the gun.
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Michael Mancuso can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org