Observances of National POW/MIA Recognition Day are held across the country on military installations, ships at sea, state capitols, schools and veterans’ facilities. It is traditionally observed on the third Friday in September each year. This observance is one of six days throughout the year that Congress has mandated the flying of the National League of Families’ POW/MIA flag. The others are Armed Forces Day, Memorial Day, Flag Day, Independence Day and Veterans Day.

The flag is to be flown at major military installations, national cemeteries, all post offices, VA medical facilities, the World War II Memorial, Korean War Veterans Memorial, the Vietnam Veterans Memorial, the official offices of the secretaries of state, defense and veterans affairs, the director of the selective service system and the White House.

To the men and women who have served, and those currently serving in the uniformed services of the United States, are ever heedful that the gift of abiding peace has always been tainted by the sorrow of personal sacrifice. We are obliged to never forget that while we enjoy our gift of freedom, there are others who have sacrificed and may still be experiencing the agonies of pain, deprivation and imprisonment.

It is in this spirit that Chapter 233 of the Vietnam Veterans of America honors all American Prisoners of War and Missing in Action with the annual 24 hour POW/MIA VIGIL at MEMORIAL PARK in Metuchen.

Now on its 20th year, the vigil started on Friday, Sept. 17th at noon. Activities included hourly candle lightings and hanging of dog tags on a replica bamboo cage. Each candle and dog tag represent individual New Jersey POW’S/MIA’S from the Vietnam War still unaccounted for. The Candles and Dog Tags hung hourly in groups of ten. Member of the community participated in candle lighting and Dog Tags hanging in this solemn honor.

At the closing ceremonies on Saturday, Chapter President Ed Marczak thanked those who made this year’s vigil memorable and introduced the select speakers of the event. Highlights from program included an American Indian dance ceremony by Boy Scout-Order of the Arrow Zackaria Lane accompanied by a Cherokee version of Amazing Grace. A plaque was presented in honor of MIA Richard Herold, in attendance to receive the award was Richard’s sister Karen Herold.

Vietnam Veterans of America – Chapter 233
POB 10251, New Brunswick, NJ 08906
(732) 225-5588
Chartered by U.S. Congress Not for profit Veterans-Service organization

President Ed Marczak
1st Vice President: Mike Garni
2nd Vice President: Tony Malara
Treasuer: Al Miller
Secretary: Ron Cusumano
Sgt-At-Arms: Len Mundy

John Basilone Detachment Marine Corps League

Middlesex County Sheriff’s Department

Walter Zjawin

Ed Marczak and Mel Mezaros

Rutgers ROTC

Middlesex County Sheriff’s Department

Walter Zjawin with the family of MIA Richard Herold

Boy Scout-Order of the Arrow Zackaria Lane

Mel Mezaros

Ed Marczak

Ed Cook