Ocean County Columbus Day Parade Committee will be honoring this year's 23rd Columbus Day Parade Grand Marshal this week. Toms River Resident Robert Dibiase, who's a decorated Vietnam Veteran, retired Verizon Manager, Italian import business founder and philanthropist, will be honored at the Annual Grand Marshal Dinner Dance in Point Pleasant, this Thursday, June 19th.

Dibiase said he was truly shocked to be selected for a position that he calls a great honor. "Following in the footsteps of Paul Barlo and Joe Leone and Joe Vicari and other grand marshalls, it was truly an honorable experience and feeling," Dibiase said.

The Toms River Township Mayor And Council also recognized Dibiase with a proclamation last week

Dibiase will be formally introduced during Thursday's annual Grand Marshal dinner dance at the Crystal Point Yacht Club in Point Pleasant.

Screening Committee Chairwoman Carol Tramutola offers a written statement about why they selected Dibiase from a field of qualified candidates this year.

"Robert DiBiase stood out among this year's nominees because of the excellence he has achieved in his career and his lifelong service to his community, especially within the Italian Community. said Tramutola. She continues, "We are confident that this extraordinary man will uphold the fine tradition established by his predecessors. I am looking forward to having Robert lead our Twenty-third Parade and serve as our representative this year."

The press release goes on to say, "anyone interested in attending the Dinner Dance, placing an ad in the ad journal, sponsoring the event, joining the Parade Committee, or wishing any other information regarding this year's Parade and Italian Festival and accompanying events, may contact Michael Blandina at 732 814-6365. The Ocean County Columbus Day website also list a number of events prior to the parade. at www.columbusnj.org/events

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