FREEHOLD, NJ – In an effort to honor the sacrifices made by our servicemen and women, Monmouth County is moving forward with plans to designate parking spaces for combat-wounded veterans at frequently visited county properties, including the Hall of Records, parks and libraries. The effort is being spearheaded by Freeholder Deputy Director Serena DiMaso, after an initiative in her hometown of Holmdel.
“We all recognize the tremendous sacrifices our military personnel have made to secure the freedoms we enjoy every day,” said DiMaso. “Regretfully, many of these men and women have returned home with physical and emotional injuries that will follow them the rest of their lives. A designated parking space is a simple way to say thank you.”
The Freeholder, on behalf of the board has written letters to all Monmouth County mayors asking them to consider placing these signs in their municipal lots.
The designated parking spots honor the sacrifices of combat-wounded veterans and take aim at making their lives a little easier. The signs are being installed through a collaboration with Wounded Warrior Family Support (WWFS), who is supplying the parking signs free of charge to county and local governments. WWFS provides the signs at no cost, with the County and municipalities responsible for the cost of delivery and installation. All signs being installed in County parking lots will be installed by the County Department of Public Works.
“Our veterans have sacrificed so much for our freedoms, so it’s important we do what is right for them. Designated parking for combat-wounded veterans makes perfect sense to provide this deserving recognition,” said Monmouth County Freeholder Director Thomas A. Arnone.
The parking sign is emblazoned with the Purple Heart medal with the traditional color purple as reminder of the sacrifices made by our veterans at home and abroad. The Purple Heart medal is the most recognized symbol of American sacrifice during hostile actions and it is awarded to our nation’s armed forces veterans who are killed or wounded in action against an enemy of United States. There have been an estimated 1.8 million Purple Heart awarded since the medal was established in 1932, and retroactive to World War I.
The designated parking spots are similar to spaces already in place for individuals who are physically-challenged.
“We owe a huge debt to our veterans. Most of them have transitioned back into civilian life with little or no fanfare. A parking space is recognition of the sacrifices made by our combat-wounded veterans,” said Monmouth County Freeholder John P. Curley, who oversees the county Division on Aging, Disabilities and Veterans Services.