TRENTON, NJ – Senator Steven Oroho, Assemblyman Hal Wirths, and Assemblyman Parker Space’s (all R-Sussex, Warren, Morris) bipartisan legislation paying tribute to veterans by renaming Sussex County’s High Point State Park to “High Point State Park and New Jersey Veterans Memorial” was signed into law on Friday. They said it’s a fitting tribute to the Garden State’s more than 400,000 veterans.
“Renaming High Point State Park to honor New Jersey’s veterans is an appropriate memorial,” Oroho said. “My hope is that the park’s new name will serve as a reminder to all park-goers of the valiant sacrifices our military members make at home and abroad to preserve our nation’s freedom.”
High Point Park was made possible by Colonel Anthony R. and Susie Dryden Kuser, who generously donated the 10,500 acres that encompasses New Jersey’s tallest point. These generous patriots also sponsored the 220-foot war memorial that towers over that land.
In 1923, Colonel Anthony Kuser deeded his summer mountain estate at High Point to New Jersey for the purpose of creating a State Park and later donated $500,000 to erect a granite obelisk – the High Point Veterans’ Monument – at New Jersey’s highest peak within the park to honor all of New Jersey’s heroes who have fought for our country.
“Renaming this popular recreational area gives our vets the recognition they earned,” Wirths remarked. “People know the monument but they have no idea it honors the war veterans responsible for our freedoms.”
“From its inception, the park was planned to commemorate New Jersey boys who never returned from the war,” Space commented. “As the years went by, that noble mission has been lost. This is in keeping with the original intentions of the men and women who helped make the park a reality in the 1920s.”
One of the most visible and best known parks in the State, the renamed park rises 1,803 feet above sea level. According to the New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection, the park offers “spectacular views of rich farmland and forest, soft hills and lush valleys in three states – New Jersey, New York, and Pennsylvania.”
The idea to rename the state park originally came from Roger Gengaro, former State commander of the New Jersey Chapter of the American Legion.
“Hal, Parker, and I want to thank New Jersey’s American Legion and former State commander Roger Gengaro for their support of this effort,” Oroho added. “We hope that our collective efforts show our immense gratitude and respect to all veterans – past, present, and future.”