Honoring a Forgotten Veteran

By PNC Carl Singer

Like many other JWV posts, Essex-Preiskel-Miller-Glassberg Post 47 in Northern New Jersey helps maintain veterans’ graves at several cemeteries. Each year, with the help of volunteers from nearby synagogues, we refresh weather beaten flags and JWV markers prior to Memorial Day and Veterans Day.

The largest cemetery in our area is King Solomon Cemetery with over 55,000 graves. We replace as many as 500 flags there each year. Additionally, throughout the year when a family contacts the cemetery to request a new or replacement flag we do so.

On Friday, August 20, I drove out to King Solomon Cemetery to place a single flag after receiving a family’s request. While walking back to my car I noticed a headstone with neither a flag nor marker.
Private Ralph Silverstein, barely 20 years old, was killed in action on September 22, 1944. I cleaned up the headstone and placed a JWV marker and flag there.

I then noticed that his yahrzeit date was on the 5th of Tishrei – less than two weeks away. I contacted my friend and fellow Post 47 member Chaplain Ira Kronenberg to ensure Private Silverstein’s yahrzeit would be properly observed with kaddish.

Volume 77. Number 2. 2023