Fairfield (NJ) As part of its “Honor Our Heroes” initiative, during the month of November, all Fairfield police officers will be wearing olive drab green uniforms that closely resemble those worn by members of the United States armed forces. This is being done as a way to pay tribute and to thank our veterans for their service and sacrifice. The uniforms were unveiled on Monday November 4, 2019 and have been very well received by both the public and the officers alike. In addition, on the collars of each uniform, officers will be displaying the emblem of the 502nd Infantry division in memory of Fairfield’s own Corporal Neal D. Epifanio who was killed in action in Vietnam 50 years ago, as well as, a pin from one of the branches of the armed forces.
The idea for the uniforms was formulated over a year ago as a way for the Fairfield Police Department to bring awareness to the country’s veterans in a similar manner as they do for breast cancer awareness in the month of October when the department wears uniforms trimmed in pink. The cost of these uniforms was taken care of by the Fairfield Police Foundation.
“We felt it very important to call attention to the service and sacrifice our veterans made for all of us and wanted to do so in a unique way. Having worn these uniforms for only one day, it seems we have already accomplished just that. So many members of the public have already stopped to speak with our officers and ask us about our new uniforms, which not only enhances our community policing by stimulating officer and citizen dialogue but it also gives us the opportunity to speak about our veterans to them” said Chief Anthony G. Manna.
The department, the community and the school system have also teamed up for other veteran’s events during November to include an assembly at West Essex High School on November 6th, where local veterans will be honored and then speak to students in their classrooms about their service. On Veterans Day, the township will be unveiling a commemorative street sign on Horseneck Road, at the intersections of Fairfield Road and Plymouth Street, to honor Cpl. Neal D. Epifanio. Also some local businesses, like the Franklin Steakhouse on Passaic Avenue, will be honoring veterans on Veterans Day with 15% off their check when they produce a valid military identification.
“We are so proud of this initiative that the Fairfield Police Department helped to bring to our community and truly hope that everyone takes the time to seek out a veteran and thank them for what they did for all of us” said the chief.
Authorized by: Chief Anthony Manna