On Sunday, June 30, the Verona-based veterans support charity Backpacks For Life and the memorial foundation Sons of Verona will dedicate a Verona Park bench to remember the lives of Verona High School graduates Michael Halpert and Christopher Blum. Halpert served in the U.S. Navy and died in 2009 when was assaulted after coming to the aid of a fellow shipmate. Blum died in 2001 after struggling with addiction.
Sons of Verona, created in the wake of their deaths, originally gave a scholarship based purely on character to a Verona High School senior and Brett D’Alessandro, who would go on to found Backpacks For Life, was its first recipient. The foundation now provides donations to causes in the Verona community.
“We welcome all who would like to share a memory about our sons or just be present to support us and remind us that they are not forgotten as we travel through this journey without their physical presence,” Sons of Verona posted to its Facebook page.
The event will start at 10:30 a.m. by the bocce courts and will include a light lunch after the dedication.