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Posts Tagged ‘Neptune High School ROTC honor guard’

Members of the Neptune High School NJROTC honor guard and NHS 11th grader during the singing of the Stat Spangled Banner

Members of the Neptune High School NJROTC honor guard and NHS 11th grader Jordan Vinson during the singing of the Star Spangled Banner.  Ocean Grove, NJ. Paul Goldfinger photographs @Blogfinger  ©  click left to enlarge.

Seventy two years ago, on a Sunday morning, December 7, 1941, America was attacked at Pearl Harbor, and 2,400 of our citizens died. The next day, President Franklin Roosevelt asked Congress to authorize a declaration of war. FDR said, “We will gain the inevitable triumph, so help us God.”

In Ocean Grove there is always a memorial ceremony on this date. I don’t know how long it has been going on, but it is a tradition. Not many towns have such an event, and this morning, at 11 am, a group gathered consisting mostly of members of the Ocean Grove Fishing Club and various veterans organization from the area. Also in attendance was an honor guard from the NJROTC at Neptune High School.  If they look familiar, you have probably seen them marching in Ocean Grove parades.

An 11th grader from NHS, Jordan Vinson, sang the Star Spangled Banner accapello, and it was lovely and heartfelt.  After the event I asked her if she ever sang the national anthem with an orchestra, and she “no,” but she gave me a big bright smile when I said, “Maybe some day you can stand in front of an orchestra in the Great Auditorium and sing it.”

It was cold up on the pier, but everyone stood and joined in the pledge of allegiance  and in the singing of  “God Bless America.” Joan Dawson, of the OG Fishing Club, spoke at the brief event which lasted about 30 minutes.  She mentioned the veterans and how we honor them at an event like this and then she proudly told of all the accomplished women now serving in the armed forces.

Firing volleys in honor of the dead

Firing volleys in honor of the dead.

Then a group of riflemen fired a volley in tribute to those who died that day.  The casings flew up into the air while the veterans present, wearing their VFW or American Legion hats, stood at attention and saluted.

At attention.

At attention during taps.

Robert Hodges, the Monmouth County Commander of the American Legion  and a lifetime member of the VFW told me that he commands over 20 chapters in the area.  I took his picture and he said, “I remember you.”

“That’s right”  I replied, “I put your photo on my blog, and I will do it again this time,” as I handed him one of our cards. The kids in the honor guard got Blogfinger cards and so did Jordan.

Commander Robert Hodges, Monmouth American Legion and VFW.

Commander Robert Hodges, Monmouth American Legion and VFW.

L to R: Joyce Dawson, Joyce Bradley, Pam James, and Joan Sunnerville. It was a day of J names.

L to R: Joyce Dawson, Joyce Bradley, Pam James, and Joan Sunnerville. It was a day for  J names.

Three patriotic  ladies from Neptune stood in front, side by side, to sing “God Bless America,” conducted by maestro Joyce Dawson. They sang with enthusiasm, and Joyce Bradley, the President of the  Neptune VFW Auxiliary asked  me to take their photo. I was going to anyhow.  Having been to this event before, I knew what to expect and I was not surprised at the pride and sincerity of those who were present.

If any members of the NHS honor guard send me an email, I can mail them a few  more photos  (Blogfinger@verizon.net)

RUBY BRAFF (cornet)  and DICK HYMAN (Wurlitzer theatre organ)     “America the Beautiful.”

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