County Veteran’s Office Locates 60 Honorees who received medals at ceremony


Honorably discharged veterans from throughout the state of New Jersey, including 25 from Union County, attended a public Medal Ceremony October 20th put together by the New Jersey Department of Veterans and Military Affairs. The event was part of a “Veterans Outreach Campaign” to award the NJ Distinguished Service Medal; NJ Vietnam Medal; NJ Meritorious Service Medal; and, the NJ Korean Service Medal to deserving veterans.

With the help of the Union County Department of Human Services, Office of Veterans Affairs located in Elizabeth, the Union County veterans received medals at the ceremony held in the Center Court of the Jersey Gardens Mall.  Another 35 veterans who could not attend the ceremony will receive their medals at a later date.

“It is important that we never forget the men and women who have served our country,” said Union County Chairman Alexander Mirabella. “Each and every one of these veterans earned this honor. And a great deal of thanks has to go out to our County Veteran’s Affairs Office and to the state, for reaching out to find the veterans and their families so they could be presented with their medals.”

The Union County Office of Veterans Affairs worked closely with local veterans and their families to complete the process necessary to receive the medals. In all, 49 contacted the veteran’s affairs office for help in applying for the medals.  The medal application process required completing a one-page form and each had to gather documents showing residency, proof of honorable discharge and evidence of active duty service in qualifying areas or contiguous waters or airspace.

“Our veteran population was ready when our nation called them to duty, so when they need our help they can count on the Union County Office of Veterans Affairs to be there to guide them through any red tape that they might encounter in civilian life,” said Mirabella.

The following is a list of Union County veterans who received metals at the ceremony:

  1. Sergeant Eddie Aikens, Plainfield
  2. Specialist Andres Arroyave, Elizabeth
  3. Private 2nd Class Charles Avery, Rahway
  4. Sergeant George Becker, Scotch Plains
  5. Specialist 5, Bruce Blakelee, Fanwood
  6. Specialist 5, Michael Chmiel, Cranford
  7. Specialist 4, Martin Danielson, Jr., Linden
  8. Sergeant James D’Arcy, Jr., Cranford
  9. Specialist 4, David DiFiore, Scotch Plains
  10. Private George Douglas, Summit
  11. Specialist 5, Andrew Dues, Plainfield
  12. Corporal Vincent Elliott, Elizabeth
  13. Private 1st Class Phillip Gluck, Rahway
  14. Sergeant Adriel Gonzalez, Elizabeth
  15. Sergeant Francisco Guzman, Linden
  16. 1st Lieutenant Michael Henehan, Cranford
  17. Staff Sergeant Eduardo Hernandez, Scotch Plains
  18. Corporal John Lozito, Union
  19. Private 1st Class Henry Oxley, Cranford
  20. Staff Sergeant Carlos Rodriguez, Elizabeth
  21. Specialist Doris Rodriguez, Elizabeth
  22. Sergeant Frederick Rojek, Scotch Plains
  23. Sergeant Dominick Secatello, Linden
  24. Specialist 4, Carl Sicola, Scotch Plains
  25. Sr. Master Sergeant Herman White, Hillside