25 Forgotten Veterans to be Honored in Two Ceremonies

NORTH BERGEN, N.J. - September 10, 2013

Twenty-five veterans whose remains have been orphaned and abandoned until now, will be laid to rest with help from the Dignity Memorial® network of funeral providers in New Jersey allied with the New Jersey’s Mission of Honor (NJMOH). The ceremonies will begin at 9 a.m. on Wednesday, September 18, 2013 at the Garden State Crematory, 4101 Kennedy Boulevard in North Bergen, N.J. Following the morning ceremony, a procession will be led by the New Jersey State Police to Brig. Gen. William C. Doyle Veterans Memorial Cemetery, 350 Province Line Road in Wrightstown for a 1 p.m. committal service.

Over the past nine months, Dignity Memorial funeral directors throughout New Jersey have worked with NJMOH to identify the orphaned and abandoned cremated remains of U.S. veterans. Cooperating funeral directors are from Becker Funeral Home in Westwood; Bloomfield-Cooper Funeral Home in Ocean; D’Elia Funeral Home in Lakewood; Gutterman and Musicant Funeral Home in Hackensack; Neary-Quinn Funeral Home in Manasquan and Thos. L Shinn Funeral Home in Manahawkin.

“This has been a cooperative effort designed to ensure that veterans whose cremated remains have remained lost for years, receive the honors in death that their service in life merited,” said Martin O. Seitz, manager of Becker Funeral Home in Westwood, N.J.

“We’re honored to finally be able to give these 25 veterans the dignified military respect and honor they deserve,” stated market director Michael Steffaro. “I am very proud of the Dignity Memorial providers taking part in this effort. It has been an intensive project.”

This program is one of many efforts of the Dignity Memorial network to honor and support our nation’s veterans and active military. Other initiatives and programs include the Dignity Memorial Homeless Veterans Burial Program, Veterans Planning Guide, educational veteran’s seminars and special cost consideration for members of veteran’s service organizations.

The Dignity Memorial network of more than 1,800 funeral, cremation and cemetery service providers is North America’s most trusted resource for funeral and memorialization services. Dignity Memorial providers offer an unmatched combination of products and locations serving families with care, integrity, respect and service excellence. For more information, visit www.DignityMemorial.com.

New Jersey’s Mission of Honor was established after Public Law 2009, c.14, was signed by NJ Governor Jon Corzine on February 4, 2009. This legislation provided for NJMOH, along with other veterans organizations, to locate, identify and inter orphaned and abandoned cremated remains of veterans. NJMOH’s mission could only be accomplished with the cooperation and assistance of funeral directors throughout New Jersey.

The first NJMOH ceremony was held on May 15, 2009, for two veterans. In total, honor and respect have been given to 105 veterans, having served our country during the Mexican Border War, World War I, World War II, Korea and Vietnam as well as during peacetime, including recipients of the Purple Heart, Bronze Star and other commendations. Some of these veterans’ cremated remains have been abandoned for more than 50 years. In addition, as a result of funeral directors’ and NJMOH’s efforts, more than 200 families have claimed their loved ones’ cremated remains.

New Jersey’s Mission of Honor for Cremains of American Veterans is a non-profit 501(c)19 corporation, accomplishing its mission through donations and volunteers. For more information, visit www.njsmissionofhonor.org. NJMOH Chairman Francis Carrasco is a disabled Vietnam veteran, Purple Heart recipient and Bergen County’s 2013 Veteran of the Year. He may be reached at mrfajc@hotmail.com or 201-906-1592.

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