Kukor Way dedicated in honor of late U.S. Navy signalman


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NORTH BRUNSWICK – The Veteran Street Sign Dedication Ceremony on May 7 honored the late William Kukor with a secondary sign for Kukor Way, which is located at the intersection of Williamson and Sherman roads.

Kukor was born on Dec. 25, 1925, in New Brunswick. He moved to North Brunswick in 1963, according to a proclamation read in his honor.

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Kukor began his service to the U.S. Navy in 1944. He completed Naval Signalman Training School at the University of Chicago in August 1944 during World War II.

He was a Signalman Second Class in the Naval Armed Guard on Merchant Marine Ship USS Whitman that sailed to the Philippines in the Pacific Theater. His job as a signalman consisted of both visual communications and advanced lookout skills. He was responsible for transmitting, receiving, encoding, decoding and distributing messages received from the visual transmission systems of flag semaphone, visual Morse code, and flag hoist signaling, according to his proclamation.

Hie group patrolled and escorted missions to Eniwetok, Johnston Island, Kwajalein and Ulithi in the south Pacific in the summer of 1945. The USS Whitman was a destroyer escort for the Navy, protecting convoys and other ships in the Pacific Ocean against the Japanese submarines and fighter aircraft, according to the proclamation.

Kukor was honorably discharged in the summer of 1946.

He was employed by the Rutgers University Press after returning home. He had a career in banking, and retired as president of Magyar Savings in New Brunswick in 1987.

He was a member of the New Brunswick Chamber of Commerce and the Rotary Club. He served on many non-profit organization boards including the American Hungarian Foundation and the McCarrick Care Center. He was active at Camp Kilmer in Edison when Hungarian refugees came from Hungary to the United States, according to his proclamation.

Kukor married Jessie and had three children: John married to Nancy, Rosanne married to Gregory and Patty (deceased). He also has four grandchildren and one great-grandchild.

He resided in North Brunswick for more than 30 years before passing away on June 20, 1996.

The street sign program allows township residents, who were wartime veterans, to be recognized by adding their name on a secondary street sign to an existing municipal road in order to promote public awareness of these individuals and show appreciation for their outstanding contributions and service as a member of the United States Armed Forces.

Wartime veterans served in the active military forces during a period of armed conflict or received the armed forces expeditionary or other campaign service medals during an emergency condition, including those who died in the line of duty in the active military forces.

Eligible candidates include honorably discharged veterans having served in the Army, Navy, Air Force, Marine Corps and the Coast Guard.

To nominate a veteran, living or deceased, contact Lou Ann Benson, director of the North Brunswick Department of Parks, Recreation & Community Services, at 732-247-0922, ext. 475 or lbenson@northbrunswicknj.gov.

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