Mercer County Veteran Services, led by Division Chief Medina Wilson, supports veterans throughout the year in a variety of ways, as exemplified by recent events from a Veterans Day Ceremony and a recent Pearl Harbor Remembrance, according to Mercer County Executive Brian M. Hughes.
On Dec. 4, Hughes joined Veteran Services and local veterans at Mercer County’s annual Pearl Harbor Remembrance at the Mercer County Office Park gym in Ewing.
“It’s been 81 years since America’s Naval base at Pearl Harbor was attacked (Dec. 7, 1941), and few of the battle’s survivors are alive today,” he said. “But it’s important that we continue to educate younger generations on the significance of that event, which led to our nation’s entry into World War II, and that we remember those who gave their lives to protect our freedoms.”
Mercer County supports veterans through an annual Veterans Meal Drive. This year, Veteran Services will offer meal packages to up to 100 veterans and their families. Gift bags that include staples and gift cards for a delicious holiday meal will be distributed to veterans, while supplies last from 9:30 a.m. to noon on Dec. 10 at the Mercer County Office Park, 1440 Parkside Ave. in Ewing.
To receive a holiday gift bag, a veteran must be able to show their military ID, DD214 or NGB22, Hughes said.
In early November, Hughes took part in Mercer County’s annual Veterans Day ceremony held at the Hopewell Valley Golf Club. Hughes thanked the Knights of Columbus, the Bishop Griffin Assembly, Central New Jersey Centennial Chapter and District 25 Deputy Al Ambrose for donating ShopRite gift cards at the event to help veterans in need during the holiday season.
The County also held a Veterans Expo at the Mercer County Office Park, where the County Clerk’s Office, County Connection and numerous vendors provided information on the many goods, services, programs and discounts available to veterans, Hughes said.
In November, Mercer County Veterans Services was presented with the New Jersey’s Governor “We Value Our Veterans Community Award” during the state Veterans Day ceremony at the New Jersey Vietnam Veterans Memorial in Holmdel. The Community Award recognizes communities that honor the sacrifices, patriotism and bravery of New Jersey service members.
In addition to the holiday meal package, veterans will have an opportunity to enter into a raffle for a variety of prizes, including an Apple iPhone 14, all of which were donated by Amazon. The raffle drawing will be held Dec. 15.
“Each year, our communities are very supportive of this fund drive,” Hughes said. “That kind of generosity is what makes Mercer County great. Our veterans have given so much now let’s continue to show them we care.”
For those interested in making donations, checks are payable to Mercer County Trust Fund. Mail donations to the Mercer County Division of Veteran Services, 1440 Parkside Ave., Ewing, NJ 08638. For additional information on donating, call 609-989-6120.