West Milford High School Band marched with hero memories in Manhattan St. Pat’s Day Parade

First responders and others from West Milford area had important roles in 9/11 rescues

| 19 Mar 2022 | 03:31

The West Milford High School Band was in the March 17 NYC St. Patrick’s Day Parade

A light rain fell, but it couldn’t dampen spirits as the West Milford High School Band members began their traditional march along New York City’s Fifth Avenue as participants in the 2022 St. Patrick’s Day Parade. The last time the band marched was in 2019, as COVID 19 later cancelled the popular event for 2020 and 2021.

This was the 261st St. Patrick’s Day parade in New York City. The route continued for 35 blocks, passing St. Patrick’s Cathedral and Central Park. The two- year hiatus was the only time the parade was not held. Thousands of enthusiastic people lined the sidewalks of the parade route. James T. Callahan, a nationally-known labor leader, was Grand Marshal for the third year in a row.

This was an especially significant observance, with first responders who helped others during the COVID-19 Pandemic, and those who volunteered their assistance at Ground Zero after the terrorist attack destroyed New York’s twin towers 20 years ago being recognized and honored. Also remembered were those who died as a result of Covid-19 and those who were murdered in the twin towers attack. A moment of silence was observed at noon. (The 20th anniversary of the World Trade Center attack was delayed because of the cancellation of the 2021 parade.)

Also remembered were those who died of toxic infections as a result of contamination at the twin towers site. Others honored were military people and volunteers who died during the past year.

West Milford and Upper Greenwood Lake Volunteer Ambulance Corps and members of the Township of West Milford volunteer fire companies spent many days at the Ground Zero site volunteering their help after the twin towers fell. There were five people with connections to West Milford killed in the 9/11 terror attack, now over 20 years ago. They were the Rev. Mychal Judge, former pastor of St. Joseph Church, Echo Lake, who died after planes hit and destroyed the twin towers. He was administering to the injured at Ground Zero at the time. Jeremy Glick, of Greenwood Lake, was one of the heroes who took down a plane they were passengers on – crashing into a Pennsylvania field. The aircraft was heading to Washington to destroy a target there.

T. J. Hargrave grew up in the Echo Lake section of the township and was at work in a trade center office along with Jean DePalma and Michael Zinzi of Newfoundland. They were killed when the terrorist planes flew into the buildings and destroyed them.