Galloway’s 9-11 Memorial Event Stirs Emotions




Galloway’s 9-11 Memorial Event stirred emotions from the very start this year. This being the 15th anniversary of one the most tragic attacks in our Nation’s history, added even more solemnness to the ceremony. Galloway Fire Chief Amor “Skip” Portale was visibly shaken as he spoke of the tragedy. He and his department of dedicated fire fighters stood in full dress uniform on this day of remembrance. They reflected upon the nation’s loss as the “Four Fives” rang from the bell, a traditional bell signal used to honor a fallen fire fighter.

Galloway’s very sharp Police Honor Guard posted the colors as Boy Scout troop 634 led the assembled crowd in the Pledge of Allegiance. Howard, Donna Marie and Heather Berchtold sang our National Anthem and then the speakers made their remarks. The guest speaker, Brandon Wise, of the “Salvation Army” spoke of his experiences at Ground Zero.

The Absegami High School Choir led by Cheryl Breitzman sang beautifully as usual. The Atlantic City Fire Department Sandpiper Drum and Bugle performed multiple moving bagpipe driven instrumentals.

The Wreath ceremony included the children of first responders, Cayla and Madison Kirby of the Galloway Fire Department, Easton and Emmalene Vernon, of the Galloway Police Department, Dakota Gunsert and Keaden Cantz of Galloway’s Ambulance Squad and Connor Morrissey with Alexandra Hughes.

Anna Jezycki “Mrs. J”, who lost her niece on 9-11 fired a single volley from the “Jaime Lee”, the Galloway Patriot’s Civil War cannon to honor all those which we have lost. This was followed by Taps performed by Joe Ward and Heather Berchtold.

Galloway Patriot publisher Chuck Knutson, Mrs "J", and Lcpl Kyle Ragland place flag at 9-11 cross
Galloway Patriot publisher Chuck Knutson, Mrs “J”, and Lcpl Kyle Ragland place flag at 9-11 cross

Following Taps, Galloway Patriot newspaper publisher Chuck Knutson who is also Sgt. at Arms of “Last Salute Military Funeral Honor Guard”, along with Marine Lcpl Kyle Ragland, folded a flag which they then presented to Anna Jezycki “Mrs. J”. They then led Mrs. J to a table where she laid the flag in front of the 9-11 cross which is made of steel from the World Trade Center. It was such an emotional moment that the flag was later given to Mrs.J as a gift. Last Salute would normally keep the flag for future use but decided that Mrs. J should keep it. Parsel’s Funeral Home in Absecon has been very generous in providing Last Salute flags for events such as this.


For those who did not attend, please view the over 50 photos below. If you have the time, visit the 9-11 Memorial at Patriot Lake.


Leave a Reply