2008 Concert Night at The Raritan Valley Theatre
Featuring The Quantico Marine Band
Every year, we can't help but be amazed by the ongoing dedication of the folks in Raritan Borough who keep the John Basilone flame burning. Basilone, a Raritan native, won the Congressional Medal of Honor for his heroism on Guadalcanal in 1942, and later received the Navy Cross posthumously for his bravery in the Battle of Iwo Jima, where he was killed in 1945. Many communities across America have war heroes who they can claim as their own, heroes who died on distant battlefields like Basilone. Many of them have been honored in ways that endure to this day, their names attached to a school or a park, or a memorial statue. But many are also largely forgotten, their stories fading away with the years. But not Basilone, or his story. On Sunday, Raritan Borough will hold its annual John Basilone Parade. As far as the organizers of the event can tell, it's the only annual parade in the United States dedicated to a war hero. We can believe that. And we can also admire those who have worked so hard for so long to assure that Basilone's story and his heroism remain fresh in the minds of his community. A hit for Raritan Borough.
General Flynn with John Basilone's only surviving Classmate Vicky Melitsky The General with John Basilone's brother Donald.
Donald Basilone served in the Marines 1948-1952
Click for Photo of Donald Basilone & John Basilone together