Blue Star Memorial Stone Marks Flag Day in Beach Haven

Jun 21, 2017
Photo by: Grant Kelly

When 8,000 dogwood trees were planted as a living memorial to veterans of World War II in 1944 no one could anticipate the New Jersey Council of Garden Clubs was beginning a nationwide movement that would survive 73 years and honor all the men and women who serve in the armed forces. The tradition continued on Flag Day last week as the state’s 33rd Blue Star Memorial By-Way dedication took place at the Beach Haven Public Library.

“It honors the heroes of the past, the present and the future,” said Susan O’Donnell, president of the Garden Club of New Jersey. “We all have heroes that are vets and we should never forget to honor them.”

With the entire Beach Haven School in attendance, the crowd, which gathered under gray skies and the threat of rain showers, was serenaded by students and the school band before the memorial stone was unveiled in front of the library’s flagpole. The event, two years in the making, was attended by 9th District Assemblywoman DiAnne Gove, who helped reveal the stone; Beach Haven Mayor Nancy Taggart Davis and others to mark the occasion.

Beverly Reitinger of the Long Beach Island Garden Club said the Beach Haven Library was chosen because it’s a historic site. The site was approved by the state and the LBI Garden Club. A commemorative wreath and flowers were the work of LBI Garden Club member Chris Vohden.  —G.G.S.

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