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Honoring Our Heroes: A Reflection on Memorial Day 2024

May 23, 2024
American Legion VFW Badges

Memorial Day, observed on the last Monday of May, holds deep significance in the United States. This day unites the nation in honoring the brave men and women who have made the ultimate sacrifice while serving in the military. It is a poignant reminder of the high cost of freedom and the valor of those who have fought to protect it.

Memorial Day, originally known as Decoration Day, emerged after the American Civil War as a way to commemorate the soldiers who died in that conflict. People decorated the graves of the fallen with flowers, paying tribute to their bravery and sacrifice. Over the years, the holiday has evolved to honor all American servicemen and servicewomen who have lost their lives in various wars and conflicts. It is a day for remembrance, reflection, and gratitude for those who laid down their lives for the values and principles that the United States holds dear. 

Harrison’s Memorial Day Tribute 

The Town of Harrison will host a Memorial Day Tribute, sponsored by Harrison Post No. 282 American Legion and the Sgt. William Sawelson VFW Post 340. The event will take place at the Library Park’s Veteran’s Plaza on Thursday, May 23, 2024, at 6 p.m. Members of the Mayor & Council of Harrison will be in attendance, and the public is invited to join this solemn ceremony to honor our nation's fallen heroes. 

Traditions of Commemoration 

Memorial Day traditions across the nation include decorating graves with American flags and flowers, participating in parades, attending memorial services, and visiting cemeteries. These customs are expressions of respect and remembrance for those who have given their lives in service to the country. 

Honoring Harrison’s Vietnam Veterans 

In Harrison, New Jersey, a special place in the Veterans Plaza honors soldiers who made the ultimate sacrifice during the Vietnam War. One of the three monuments in the plaza is dedicated to these heroes, with an inscription that reads: "In Honor of Those Who Made The Supreme Sacrifice in Vietnam War, Joseph P. Mobus, Donald B. Scott, David Robertson." 

Joseph P. Mobus
Joseph P. Mobus served in the 1st Cavalry Division, 1st Battalion, 8th Cavalry, C Company. He was killed in action on August 19, 1969, at the age of 21, in South Vietnam's Binh Long province. Mobus received several honors, including the Purple Heart, Combat Infantryman Badge, and the Vietnam Campaign Medal. 

Donald B. Scott
Donald B. Scott was a machine gunner in the 1st Marine Division, 3rd Battalion, 5th Marines, L Company. He lost his life on August 2, 1968, at the age of 19, in South Vietnam's Quang Nam province. Lance Corporal Scott was posthumously awarded the Purple Heart, Combat Action Ribbon, and the Marine Corps Expeditionary Medal. 

David Robertson
Army Sergeant David Robertson served in the 4th Infantry Division, 2nd Battalion, 8th Infantry, C Company. He died on June 27, 1968, at the age of 23, in South Vietnam's Thua Thien province. Sgt. Robertson was honored with the Purple Heart, Combat Infantryman Badge, and the Army Presidential Unit Citation. 

These three individuals exemplify the courage, dedication, and sacrifice of all soldiers who fought and died in the Vietnam War. Their names are etched in the memory of Harrison, NJ, and in the hearts of those who honor their selflessness. 

Commemorating Heroes: Scott Mobus Place 

In 2013, then-Mayor Raymond McDonogh & then-Council paid a poignant tribute by renaming Hill Street to Scott Mobus Place, in honor of Donald B. Scott and Joseph P. Mobus, who both lived on that street. Additionally, Councilman and Marine Victor Villalta, now deceased, urged the Harrison Board of Education to install a commemorative plaque at Harrison High School. The plaque, featuring a photo of Marine Donald Scott, honors his athletic achievements and dedicated service to the United States. 

These gestures ensure that the legacy of Joseph P. Mobus, Donald B. Scott, and all those who made the supreme sacrifice in the Vietnam War lives on. Although Sgt. David Robertson is named on the Vietnam Veterans monument in Library Park, he does not have a street named after him in Harrison. 

Reflecting on Memorial Day 

As Memorial Day approaches, let us honor not only these fallen heroes but also the countless others who have given their lives in service to our country. May we always remember the freedoms and privileges we enjoy today, secured through the sacrifice of brave men and women throughout history. 

For more information on the Harrison Post 282 American Legion and the Sergeant William Sawelson VFW Post 340 Harrison Memorial Day Tribute please visit our prior article Harrison Post 282 American Legion and Sergeant William Sawelson VFW Post 340 Harrison Memorial Day Tribute.

In addition read our article entitled Harrison's Memorial Monument: Korean War and Harrison Memorial Monument: Vietnam War and V-E Day: Harrison's World War II Monument Honors Supreme Sacrifice.

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