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Sandy Fundraiser to Help Preserve Jersey’s Military History

Not only were houses, businesses, boardwalks and infrastructure ravaged by Superstorm Sandy but areas that contained New Jersey’s historical artifacts as well.

The National Guard Militia Museum of New Jersey's Sandy emergency grant team works on clearning small arms that were damaged by Sandy
The National Guard Militia Museum of New Jersey’s Sandy emergency grant team works on clearning small arms that were damaged by Sandy as o Brigadier General Michael Cunniff, the Adjutant General of New Jersey, looks on. (Facebook)

The National Guard Militia Museum of New Jersey in Sea Girt was inundated with a 5 foot storm surge. Floodwaters damaged numerous items on the first floor like military uniforms, weapons, documents, photographs and a fleet of historic military vehicles.

Gilda Healy, co-chair of a Sandy Relief Reception this Sunday, aimed at raising money for the Museum, estimates there there were a few hundred thousand dollars in damage done to the artifacts and the Museum building itself. Healy says that although they’ve received a few grants and FEMA money, it doesn’t completely cover the cost of restoring and rebuilding that which was damaged.

The National Guard Militia Museum of New Jersey Foundation is hosting the reception on Sunday May 19th at the Manasquan Elks Lodge on 17 Stockton Lake Blvd, from noon to 4 p.m. Healy says there will be hot and cold Hors d’oeuvres, music and gift auction. Tickets are $20 per person or $15 for people reserving a table for 10. Children under 12 can attend for free. She says there’s still space available. For more information call the museum from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. at 732-974-5966.

Artifacts and uniforms tagged, photographed by insurance reps, in the process of being inventoried and sent for cleaning and restoration.
Artifacts and uniforms tagged, photographed by insurance reps, in the process of being inventoried and sent for cleaning and restoration.(Facebook)

Healy says the National Guard Militia Museum of New Jersey tells the story of New Jersey’s rich military history from Colonial times right through the 21st Century. “We are strictly all about the military beginning with the early colonial militia the development of the National Guard.”

She credits National Guardsmen and women with helping with the physical labor of tearing down and replacing drywall and restoring the Museum building itself. So much so, that the museum reopened to visitors on April 6th and are open 7 days a week.

She says the military vehicles that were damaged have been restored and are temporarily housed at the Camp Evans Info Age Museum in Wall Township.

Healy says folks who can not attend and want to donate can do so at their website at state.nj.us/military/museum. The museum is a registered nonprofit in the State of New Jersey.

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