HOWELL – Howell Township’s Council presented three proclamations at the most recent council meeting, recognizing the upcoming National Military Appreciation Month, Gun Violence Awareness Day, and Howell’s Relay for Life.
Councilwoman Evelyn O’Donnell remarked during her reports that she was happy to see the recognition for National Military Appreciation Month on the agenda.
“My son did 15 years in the Air Force, 9 active tours in Iraq, Afghanistan, and Iran,” she said. “I’m very proud to think that our council and our town think so highly of the military.”
The proclamation stated that National Military Appreciation month was officially recognized by the US Congress back in 2004, “calling all Americans to remember those who gave their lives in defense of freedom and to honor the men and women of all armed forces.”
This recognition is celebrated throughout May and June, two months that have a host of various celebrations for the branches of service, including VE Day, Military Spouse Day, Loyalty Day, Armed Forces Day and Week, Memorial Day, Navy Day, Army Day, and Flag Day.
Another proclamation recognized Gun Violence Awareness Day as June 1. The proclamation noted that every day 96 Americans are killed due to gun violence and on average there are about 13,000 gun homicides each year.
“Americans are 25 times more likely to be killed with a gun,” that those in other countries, read Deputy Mayor Robert Nicastro.
Present at the meeting was Bill Kaminski of Moms Demand Action, a non-partisan movement demanding reasonable solutions to address our nation’s culture of gun violence, according to their website.
“You don’t need to be a mother to be a member of Moms,” said Kaminski. “Our goal is to reduce 3,600 deaths every year through sensible legislation, raising awareness, and by promoting gun safety.”
Kaminski noted that everyone should wear orange on June 1 to honor victims of gun violence for Gun Violence Awareness Day.
Councilman Robert Walsh read the proclamation recognizing the 2018 Relay for Life. Relay for Life will take place at Howell High School on June 8 and 9.
Nicastro called the efforts of the students each year to make Relay possible and to raise money for cancer “inspiring.”
The council also took a moment to recognize the Howell High School Varsity Competition Cheer Team for their state championship win and second place win at nationals in Florida.
One of Howell High School Cheer Coaches represented the girls at the meeting, remarking that the girls cheer team ranked highest among their division, against schools of a similar size and demographics in the state championship.
She said that the team practices 5 to 6 times a week to compete for 10 consecutive weekends in local competitions to prepare for the state competitions.
The team was undefeated all season until their last competition, where they placed second at the national level in Orlando, Florida.
“It’s just been a joy this season watching these girls and all their hard work,” she said.