The Lt. Dennis W. Zilinski, II Memorial Fund to Honor Veterans at West Point Cemetery in Wreath-Laying Ceremony
Adelphia, NJ - The Lt. Dennis W. Zilinski, II Memorial Fund will be taking a bus full of volunteers from the Jersey Shore to the United States Military Academy West Point Cemetery in West Point, New York, on December 7, 2019, to lay wreaths on the graves. West Point Cemetery is where Lt. Dennis W. Zilinski, II is laid to rest. Lt. Zilinski was killed in action in Iraq by a roadside bomb in 2005. The twenty-three-year-old was a Middletown, New Jersey resident, a Christian Brothers Academy alumnus, and a distinguished West Point graduate.
Trinity Hall High School junior Jordan Codispoti, a Zilinski Memorial Fund scholarship recipient from Holmdel, championed a sponsorship drive for the wreaths to lay at West Point Cemetery through Wreaths Across America in Dennis’ honor as part of her community service project. Each wreath cost $15, and the 16-year-old secured sponsorships for more than 825 wreaths.
“I’ve been instilled with patriotism since I was young, and it’s just become a part of me. It’s my duty as an American to pass it on from generation to generation. This project through the Zilinski Memorial Fund and Wreaths Across America helps me do that,” said Codispoti.
“Our sincere gratitude goes to Jordan for her commitment to honor our son Dennis' memory and all those who are at rest at West Point Cemetery,” said Marion Zilinski, Co-Founder and Board Member of the Lt. Dennis W. Zilinski, II Memorial Fund. “It is important for all Americans to remember and honor the fallen. We must never forget the true price of freedom.”
The Lt. Dennis W. Zilinski, II Memorial Fund also contributed $10,000 to Wreaths Across America for additional wreaths. Through this generous donation, none of the 7,050 graves at West Point Cemetery will go uncovered this December. As each wreath is placed on a grave, volunteers will say the name of each veteran aloud. The $10,000 donation will also go towards next year’s wreath placements at West Point Cemetery.
Wreaths Across America is a non-profit organization founded to continue and expand the annual wreath-laying ceremony at Arlington National Cemetery, which was started by Maine businessman Morrill Worcester in 1992. The organization’s mission ---Remember, Honor, and Teach--- is carried out in part each year by coordinating wreath-laying ceremonies in December at more than 1,900 veterans’ cemeteries throughout the country and world. The wreath-laying ceremony at West Point Cemetery is among them. It is held earlier in December to ensure cadets can be present.
The Lt. Dennis W. Zilinski, II Memorial Fund was created and founded in 2006 to honor local hero Lt. Zilinski. Dennis was a member of the 187th Infantry Regiment, 3rd Brigade Combat Team of the 101st Airborne Division. Since his untimely death, family and friends have united with the Memorial Fund to provide support to improve the morale and welfare of members of the United States Armed Forces and their families.
More About the Lt. Dennis W. Zilinski, II Memorial Fund
One of the main accomplishments of the Lt. Dennis W. Zilinski, II Memorial Fund is sponsoring service dogs for wounded soldiers suffering from PTSD and TBI. To date, the Memorial Fund has sponsored more than 100 dogs at a sponsorship of $15,000 per service dog.
Additionally, the Memorial Fund provides scholarships to students at Lt. Zilinski’s alma mater, Christian Brothers Academy and Trinity Hall High School, both in New Jersey. By providing these scholarships, the Memorial Fund invests in the future of high school students who embody the leadership qualities and community spirit of Lt. Zilinski.
To help us raise awareness about all the good we do, follow us on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and YouTube. Donations may be sent to: Lt. Dennis W. Zilinski, II Memorial Fund, P.O. Box 124, Adelphia, NJ 07710.