Green Island Community Honors Fallen Hero
Plaque dedicated in tribute to Army Sgt. James Harvey
One of Toms River's fallen heroes will be honored in perpetuity with a plaque at the Green Island Community Association.
Harvey, 23, was awarded the Bronze Star and Purple Heart for his service in Afghanistan, where he had been deployed in January after joining the Army in January 2009.
The ceremony’s introduction was given by Wayne Zakaras, president of the Green Island Community Association followed by a word of remembrance by Vice President Jeff Coley. Councilwoman Maria Maruca, Councilman George Wittman, Mayor Thomas Kelaher and Congressman Jon Runyan gave comments throughout the day.
“It is very dear to me that we honor these fallen soldiers,” said Coley. “I worked for the Veterans Administration for 35 years; these active duty soldiers and the veterans are a certain breed of Americans.”
Marge Frantz sang "God Bless America," and the Honor Guard performed the traditional gun salute.
A former Clark resident, Harvey studied at Lincoln Tech before working for PSE&G. But he felt the pull of the Armed Forces.
"It was something he felt he had to do," said his sister Tracey.
Harvey was assigned to the 2nd Battalion, 2nd Infantry Regiment, 3rd Brigade Combat Team of the 1st Infantry Division out of Fort Knox, Kentucky. He was a model soldier and moved through the ranks quickly, ascending to corporal in just two years.
Harvey had received his sergeant's stripes just days before he fell to insurgent fire in Ghazni.