EDISON, N.J., April 27, 2012 /PRNewswire/ -- The New Jersey Carpenter Contractor Trust (NJCCT) announced today that the labor management organization has partnered with the Air Advisor Memorial Fund to honor the nine fallen members of the NATO Air Training Command – Afghanistan (NATC-A), who were killed on April 27, 2011, in Afghanistan. The service members who died have been dubbed the "NATC-A Nine."
The Carpenter Trust learned of the memorial through a Local Union 253 member of the Northeast Regional Council of Carpenters (NRCC), and coordinated the construction for the concrete foundation of a stone memorial that will be built on the Joint Base McGuire-Dix-Lakehurst (JB MDL), New Jersey. Observance of this one-year anniversary occurred April 27, after a 75-mile march from the World Trade Center Memorial to The NATC-A Nine memorial site.
The partnership came about when Sergeant Lawrence Aiello contacted longtime friend and Local 253 carpenter Monica Saliceti for help. "When Lawrence asked for help on this memorial, I knew that my fellow members of Local Union 255 and the Carpenter Trust would heed the call," says Saliceti.
Once Saliceti asked for help, the Carpenter Trust got to work with New Jersey's building professionals, who pledged their service and support. Andrew Bulakowski, Local 255 member and an NRCC council representative, recruited fellow carpenters and apprentices to volunteer their time.
"We feel lucky that our union can show our support and honor in this way, by crafting the foundation of the Air Advisor's Memorial," says William Sproule, Local 255 member and Regional Manager for the NRCC.
"It was a cooperative effort that brought together local carpenters in opposite regions of New Jersey who called on the skills of their fellow brothers to honor these fallen service members," says Carpenter Trust President Troy Singleton.
The Carpenter Trust received support from ReSteel Supply, Eddystone, Pa., and Bayshore Rebar, Pleasantville, N.J., who supplied all of the specially cut steel rebar for the memorial. It also secured the donation of two trucks of concrete and wood forms, while members of NRCC Local 255 contributed their time and skills to craft the memorial's foundation.
"We are fortunate to have the support of the Carpenters Union and NJCCT," says Col. Olaf Holm, commandant of the Air Advisor Academy at Joint Base McGuire-Dix-Lakehurst, N.J. "They will literally be laying the foundation of our cause to honor the sacrifice of our fellow Air Advisors."
The basic design of the memorial has two stonewalls in an "A" shape with 40-foot legs that start from the surface, graduating up to a height of 7 feet with a wide, cascading water fountain of stacked stone along with a similar smaller "A." The two "A" structures will represent Air Advisors and have the appearance of two aircraft rising from the ground in vertical formation. On the larger wall, the names of the fallen will be honorably posted.
Members of the Air Force conducted a traditional military ruck (backpack) march from the World Trade Center in New York city to McGuire, beginning April 26 and concluding April 27, to honor the first anniversary of the death of the NATC-A Nine members.
New Jersey Carpenter Contractor Trust (www.buildnj.net) is the labor management arm established by New Jersey's Union Carpenters and Contractors. Their mission is to share the story of today's hard-working union construction professionals in the fields of safety, training and job-site productivity. Through industry outreach campaigns and partnerships, The Carpenter Trust explains the efficiencies of building union, the benefits to New Jersey's economy and the savings to owners and developers.
SOURCE New Jersey Carpenter Contractor Trust