This year marks the 58th Annual Memorial Day Parade in Edison Township, and Edison’s own Staff Sergeant Joseph W. Connelly, a Vietnam War-era veteran, and longtime active community member, has been named Grand Marshal.
“I’m very honored to be Grand Marshal of this year’s Memorial Day Parade,” said Sergeant Connelly of the event.
“I’ll be 78 next week, so this is happening just before my birthday. It’s something I’m very much looking forward to.“
Staff Sergeant Joseph Connelly was born in the Bronx and raised in Staten Island, New York.
He joined the United States Air Force after high school graduation and attended basic training at Lackland Air Force Base in San Antonio, Texas.
After graduating, he went to Sheppard Air Force Base in Texas for technical and mechanical training, where he was awarded his career field.
Sergeant Connelly was stationed at Langley Air Force Base in Virginia until he was deployed to Clark Air Force Base in the Philippines from 1965 to 1967.
He also had temporary additional duty in Vietnam, Japan and Thailand. Sergeant Connelly served honorably from 1964 to 1970 and was awarded many medals.
After returning home from Vietnam, Sergeant Connelly left the military to start a family with his wife Elaine in the township of Edison.
He is a lifetime member of VFW Post 3117 for over 50 years and an active member of American Legion Father & Son Post 435 for over 37 years.
“Veterans like Sergeant Connelly helped build our town - and this country - so we are very proud to have him leading us in honoring those who lost their lives fighting to protect American democracy,” Mayor Sam Joshi said.
“It’s also special that our parade ends at Edison’s American Legion Post, which focuses on servicing the veterans in our area. I want to thank Sergeant Conelly for his service, for continuing to show us his strength as a community leader, and for reminding us of the real importance of the Memorial Day holiday weekend.”
The Memorial Day Parade commences at 12:00 p.m. on Saturday, May 28, at Plainfield Avenue and Division Street, concluding at the Father & Son American Legion Post 435 on Oakland Avenue. Residents of all ages are invited out to observe the parade and commemorate the holiday.
For further information or ADA concerns, please call the Edison Recreation Department from 8:00 a.m. – 4:30 p.m. at (732) 248–7310 or visit: edisonnj.gov.