Community

Nutley's 2011 Memorial Day Was Very Special for Many

• Townspeople Unite in Celebrating Uniqueness of Community

Enlarge This PhotoPhoto by NJHometown

Grand Marshal Rich McClintick is introduced to the assemblage on the Park Oval by Master of Ceremonies Henry Tosto, Adjutant at Nutley American Legion Post 70.

Enlarge This PhotoPhoto by NJHometown

Mayor Joanne Cocchiola the Memorial Day Address during the pre-parade ceremonies at the Park Oval. Also participating were Jack Kane, chairman of the Nutley Veterans' Council and (right) Nutley High School's Taylor Lockwood who sang the National Anthem. (left),

Enlarge This PhotoPhoto by NJHometown

Firemen Are Remembered -- Ceremonies preceding the Memorial Day Parade also took place at the Nutley Public Safety Dept. where services paid tribute to department members who served in American's wars. Seen (l-r) are Commissioners Mauro Tucci and Alphonse Petracco, Deputy Fire Chief Paul Cafone and Commissioner Dr. Joseph Scarpelli.

Enlarge This PhotoPhoto by NJHometown

Dan Rohr, a student at Nutley High School, sounds Taps to conclude the formal ceremonies on the Park Oval.

 – For the 92nd consecutive year, Nutley remembered and honored the great sacrifices of American's armed forces, present and past, in preserving America's freedom and liberties. For Nutley, May 30, 2011, was a perfect day as thousands of townspeople turned out to celebrate the day with services at the Park Oval and a great hometown parade that traveled south along the tree-lined Park Drive and eventually circling back north along Franklin Avenue, passing by both the high school and middle school before exiting onto Chestnut Street to its conclusion near Town Hall.

To be sure, Nutley is a great town for parades. The Irish-American Association's celebration of St. Patrick's Day is now in its 20th year and this spring may have set a record in both the length and number of marchers for a local parade. The combined Belleville-Nutley Columbus Day Parade is nearly twice as large bolstered by the the proud Italian heritage celebrated our two neighboring communities.

The crowds along the sidewalks of Nutley this past Monday for the most part did not spill into the streets as they did when families turned out in great numbers for other recent parades. And for good reason: all those crowds for the Irish and for Columbus no longer were parade watchers, on Memorial day they were the parade, marching alongside with their friends and neighbor, with their schoolmates and alongside the leaders of our town, our police and firemen and with the dozens and dozens of scouting organizations, service clubs, and the wide range of unique community organizations ranging from the Little Theatre to the volunteers working to restore the historic VanRiper House and maintain the Nutley Museum.

Monday's holiday appropriately began with solemn services conduced by Nutley's veterans' organizations at several memorial markers throughout the town. The strength and commitment of the American Legion, Amvets, Veterans of Foreign Wars and Catholic War Veterans, along with support groups like the the Daughters of the American Resolution, the new Peace Time Memorial that was dedicated Monday, and the remembrances organized by our churches together with the happy faces of excited grade school youngsters marching with their friends in a parade -- put that altogether and you've found the true meaning of Nutley's community spirt.

We've taken the time to prepare a group of photographs taken on Memorial Day 2011 as Nutley remembered the past and celebrated the present. Readers who might like to add their own photos to our collection are invited to forward them via news@njhometown.com

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