Volunteers from West Milford Veterans of Foreign Wars Post 7198 are often visible at the Veterans Park on Union Valley Road these days.
With Robert Hopper, present post commander at the helm, they have a mission.
Its current project is to revitalize and restore the aging park that was established by township officials as a tribute to those who served in the military.
Located in the business center of the township, and adjacent to the municipal building, the park dates back to World War II when a movement began to recognize veterans and their sacrifices.
“We have added a new display called ‘All Gave Some – Some Gave All’”, said Bill Johnson, VFW spokesperson. “It is designed by Pat Loughman, a VFW member who is also a Purple Heart recipient.”
Herb Sands, project chairman, leads his post’s efforts to repair the cracks in the memorial and repainting it.
Benches in the park are being sanded and repainted.
Dead trees that were planted through the years to honor individual service people, who gave their lives while fighting in wars to protect the nation and its way of life, have been removed.
Plants in the rose garden at the rear of the monument have been trimmed.
All costs involved with the project have been paid for by the VFW with materials donated by Joanne Woods of West Milford Ace Hardware, 10 Marshall Hill Road, and the Township of West Milford.
“In the future we hope to add a Prisoner of War/Missing in Action (POW/MIA) memorial in one of the vacant circles in the area,” Johnson, past post and district VFW commander, said. “We are always looking for new members to join our organization and help us complete our mission to remember those who served our great nation. Anyone who served in any armed military conflict is asked to join us in our voluntary efforts in the community.”
For information contact Bill Johnson at (201) 707- 1459 or John Trojanowski at (862) 377-3557.