Ninth Annual ‘Honor Day’ Paid Tribute to Active US Service Members and Veterans

Members of the US Army's 3rd Infantry Regiment, known as the "Old Guard," participated in the Honor Day program's "Fallen Comrade Table" toast for POWs and MIAs.

FARMINGDALE, NJ—(SBN)—Cheered on by about 200 middle school and high school students from around Monmouth County, approximately 50 active US service members from Fleet Week arrived via bus from New York for Eagle Oaks Golf and Country Club’s 9th Annual Honor Day, and enjoyed a round of golf and a dinner in their honor, while the students got to explore military career opportunities.

You can watch a video news report about the Honor Day program in the player below.

The children tried on paratrooper jump gear, combat equipment, and participated in demonstrations of I-Robotics (EOD) {explosive ordinance robotics}; contingency response group communications; air traffic control; aviation management; Coast Guard aviation; Cost Guard HAZMAT response team; Coast Guard Special Operation Boat & Civil Affairs Team; Chemical, Biological; Radiation; Nuclear; Explosive (CBRNE) Recon, Decon and Testing; Honor Guard; Military Intelligence; Cyber Warfare Unit, Military Police; Multifunctional Medicine Team; Physical Fitness-Rock Wall; and STEM Asset Experience (AS7). The students also wrote get-well cards to soldiers (hosted by Hope For the Warriors).

The day-long celebration had three segments (educational; golf tournament and VIP banquet) of which raised the most ever in nine years – over $200,000 for national nonprofit, Hope For The Warriors. Domenic Gatto, chairman and president of the country club, coordinated the planning committee’s efforts, led by Joseph J. Cary, managing director, KeyBanc Capital Markets. Hope for the Warriors provides support for transition, health and wellness, peer engagement and connection for military service members, post 9/11 veterans and military families.

“The profound loss after 9/11 deepened my appreciation for those in my family and others who work so hard to protect us domestically and abroad,” says Cary. “Subsequently, I started taking out 20-30 US service members for dinner during Fleet Week with a friend as a gesture of thanks. Our simple appreciation was the brainchild for Honor Day. It took a village to build the event into its present significance, and now we have community support, and, the involvement of Hope For The Warriors, which carries out important programming for military service members and their families.”

LTC Edward Croot, US Army Mid-Atlantic States Recruiting Battalion Commander

LTC Edward Croot, US Army Mid-Atlantic States Recruiting Battalion Commander

“We are here not only to honor our active service members and veterans, but also our fallen heroes,” explained Lt. Col. Edward Croot, keynote speaker at the dinner. “The table in the middle of the banquet room is set for one, signifying the daily freedom we have is brought to you by the person who is not sitting there.” The Fallen Comrade Table, set with a white tablecloth, is in remembrance of prisoners of war and those missing in action. The tradition began with a group of fighter pilots who flew in Vietnam and is the focal point of ceremonial remembrance, which continues today for those who serve. The service ball featured a narration by participating service members explaining what each item represented.


About the Author

Steve Lubetkin
Steve Lubetkin is the news director for Steve’s journalism background includes print and broadcast reporting for NJ news organizations. In May 2019, he began anchoring and reporting for the new weekly podcast, "The CRE News Hour," a news and features program focusing on the commercial real estate industry. From 2014 to 2019 he was New Jersey and Philadelphia editor for and filled in covering Chicago/Midwest and Atlanta. He has won numerous awards for his audio and video news reporting from the Garden State Journalists Association, and he has also been recognized for video by the New Jersey Chapter of the Society of Professional Journalists. He has produced audio podcasts on CRE topics for the NAR Commercial Division and the CCIM Institute. Steve has also served (from August 2017 to March 2018) as national broadcast news correspondent for, a news website focused on practical advice for senior executives in small- and medium-sized companies. Steve also reports on-camera and covers conferences for, a public policy news coverage website focused on New Jersey government and industry; and for clients of, a division of The Lubetkin Media Companies LLC. In March 2021, he was elected to the board of directors of the New Jersey Chapter of the Society of Professional Journalists. Steve has been the computer columnist for the Jewish Community Voice of Southern New Jersey, since 1996. Steve is co-author, with Toronto-based podcasting pioneer Donna Papacosta, of the book, The Business of Podcasting: How to Take Your Podcasting Passion from the Personal to the Professional. You can email Steve at