TRIBUTE: A host of Bergen County firefighters will join in the dedication next Sunday of a life-sized statue of the late Fr. Michael Judge, who died in the 9/11 attack on the World Trade Center, across from the East Rutherford church where he served.
The East Rutherford Fire Department will unite with the Carlstadt Fire Department and FDNY Ceremonial Unit for the 1:30 p.m. unveiling at St. Joseph’s Park.
Mychal, who is buried in Holy Sepulchre Cemetery in Totowa, was stationed at St. Joseph’s twice, in the 60s and 70s. He spent his final years in New York City as FDNY chaplain.
The Rev. Donald Pitches, pastor of the nearby Carlstadt First Presbyterian Church, helped organize the tribute.
“I have heard that Father Mychal did nothing that any other friar wouldn’t have done, but he did it in a way that made an impression on people and that served as an example for fellow clergy,” Pitches told Around the Province , a Franciscan Friars blog. “I thought it was a good idea to honor him.”
Pitches called the park the “ideal place” for the statue, designed by Hanlon Sculpture Studio of Toms River and paid for by the borough of East Rutherford, “because it is the original spot where the parish school was located.”