World War II Honor Roll Rededicated In Lakewood

LAKEWOOD – Tony Barone and members of the American Legion Post 1286 paid respect to Lakewood veterans on Saturday.

“Gentleman, you now have a home,” said Barone, as he faced the rededicated World War II Honor Roll board at its new permanent home at the legion, 174 Chautauqua Ave.

Dave Lange, second vice commander of American Legion Post 1286, began the rededication ceremony.

“We’re not just here to rededicate the Honor Roll, but also to thank the more than 70 individuals and organizations who contributed to this project,” Lange said.

The original Honor Roll, with over 100 names of Lakewood residents who served during World War II, was erected at the top of the Lakewood Beach hill in 1942. As the war progressed, a total of 202 names were added the board, including three names with gold stars to signify the loss of life.

At some point in the late 1940s, the board disappeared and was never located.

In 2013, the Lakewood Historical Museum and Barone, village of Lakewood historian at that time, sought to recognize the veterans by utilizing a photograph of the original to create a replica.

“One year ago, Barone approached the legion to raise funds to replicate the Honor Roll,” Lange said. “What better for legions to do than help veterans.”

After a debate about the best location for the Honor Roll, the Lakewood Legion offered to be a host site for the sign.

“I became emotionally involved with the project because as a boy, I saw the sign go up and watched names get added to it one by one,” Barone said.

A historical plaque which includes a photograph of the original sign, its story and a list of individuals and organizations who donated to the board will be placed at the top of Lakewood Beach hill, at the end of Chautauqua Avenue, where the original once stood.

The rededication was followed by refreshments at the legion and a Flag Day ceremony.