Mt. Olive Online Publication February 5, 2020

Mt. Olive Online
Mt. Olive Online

AVM Hosts Memorial Service For N.J. Fallen Soldier Tomorrow

By Cheryl Conway

The All Veterans Memorial in Budd Lake will be hosting a memorial service tomorrow for a New Jersey fallen warrior who lost his life last week while serving in Afghanistan.

U.S. Navy PO2 Kevin Yali, 27, of Midland Park tragically lost his life on Wednesday, June 19. An Honorable Service Memorial is set to be held Friday, June 28, at 3:15 p.m., at the AVM, located at 30 Flanders Rd., inBudd Lake, at the entranceway of Turkey Brook Park.

While the itinerary and details for the ceremony have already been aligned, organizers are seeking volunteers to serve as flag holders.

“Our goal is to line the entrance of the park with hundreds of flags holders,” says Charlie Wood Uhrmann, founder of the AVM. “We need your help to recruit a large group of Patriot Flag Holders to line the entrance of Turkey Brook Park to greet the motorcade.  It would make the family extremely grateful.   Please arrive at the AVM to collect your flag no later than 3:15 p.m. and feel free to stay for the 30 minute service.”

While the AVM exists in Mt. Olive, Uhrmann stresses that the memorial has been built as a ceremonial ground for all veterans. While Yali is from Bergen County, his family and friends will be traveling north west to remember and honor their beloved son, brother and friend to many.

“The AVM honors all veterans,” says Uhrmann.  “We have the Global War on Terror Bridge for those with ties to NJ who lost their fighting the war.”

According to the AVM, Yali was killed by a mortar while serving as a PO2/E5 in the U.S. Navy, deployed to the Middle East four separate times during his service.

“He was provided security services as a contractor when he lost his life,” says Uhrmann. He “had been sent to Afghanistan on June 1 to work as a private contractor serving alongside U.S. Armed Forces.”
Born in Paterson, Yali lived in Midland Park for the past 19 years, according to his obituary.
He is a cherished son of Oscar and Daisy (nee Rojas) Yali; loving brother of Oscar Yali and Victor Patrocino; beloved godson of Fabian and Wanda Rojas. A funeral service was held for him on Wednesday, June 26, at Vander Plaat-Vermeulen Memorial Home, 530 High Mountain Road, Franklin Lakes.

In lieu of flowers donations may be made for the Yali Family in memory of Kevin Yali. Checks may be sent to The Yali Family, C/O Vander Plaat-Vermeulen Memorial Home, 530 High Mountain Road, Franklin Lakes, NJ 07417.

For tomorrow’s memorial service, the AVM will distribute free flags to any flag holder who can make the ceremony tomorrow. Please arrive by 3 p.m.

According to the itinerary, the ceremony will include a formal motorcade escort of the Yali family; bagpipes, possible flyover by the N.J. state police, invocation, National Anthem, setting of a memorial paver and taps performed. See the itinerary flayer for details.

For more information, go to


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Varsity Softball Team Hits School Record

By Cheryl Conway

It was a home hitting season for the Mt. Olive High School Varsity Softball Team, advancing as high as it could and setting the best record in school history.

Tallying up all its wins and losses, including the county, state and section games, the team finished its season with 19 wins and seven losses. Accomplishments included: Second runner up in the Morris County Tournament; North 1 Group 4 State champs beating Bergen Tech 7-0; and North Section Group 4 champs beating North Hunterdon 5-2. The varsity team wound up losing 9-4 in the All Group 4 Championship game to Hightstown High School on Saturday, June 1.

The team’s success was felt township wide and expressed when emergency vehicles escorted and greeted the girls upon their return after losing in the finals.

“They gave us a hero’s welcoming even though we lost,” says Bill Romano, MOHS softball coach. “Firetrucks, ambulances and police escorted us when we got back on 206.”

In his 10th year as coach of the MOHS girls’ varsity softball team, Romano was quite pleased by his team’s performance this year.

“It was really amazing what we’ve done,” says Romano, going back to back with county finals and group 4 championship, which “has never been done here. It’s great that the girls accomplished that.”    

The 2019 season started on the first Friday in March and involved 20 girls in grades 9-12 playing on the varsity level.

“It was a season to remember,” says Dave Falleni, athletic director at MOHS.  “They were such a resilient team; they never gave up- working hard all the way to the last out.  They were a true pleasure to watch and follow all year and I look forward to next year.”

Romano, who also works for the Mt. Olive Board of Education Buildings and Grounds Department, credits the skill level of his players and their will to keep playing hard.

“Four or five years ago, we got a group of freshmen that set the goal high so we’ve been climbing ever since,” says Romano. “We’re fairly young; juniors this year were sophomores last year. The experience helped us repeat what we did last year and get a step further.”

Last year, the MOHS varsity softball team was conference champs, won its state section title North 1 Group 4 but then lost in the semi-finals against North Hunterdon, says Romano.

This year, the team got to play in the finals.

“We got one step further by playing in the championship finals,” says Romano, a 1989 alumnus of MOHS. 

The girls kept playing and playing with a mind-set void of strike-outs.

“They just had this never quit attitude,” says Romano.

 While losing in the finals was not the plan, says Romano, the team’s spirit was lifted when the players realized how many fans applauded their effort.

“Nobody takes losing well,” says Romano. “You get to that game; you want to win that last game. With coaching you see kids handle things differently.”


Once they saw the ambulance, fire trucks, and emergency vehicles, “Everything lightened up a little bit,” says Romano. “They enjoyed the moment coming back to school.”

Even Romano had a hard time accepting the defeat.

A lot of my family and friends reminded him: “You had a great year; you made school history. I’m a competitor, I want to win. But, I’ve never been more proud of a bunch of girls. I’m extremely proud at the way the ladies performed this year.”

As a former wrestler at Mt. Olive High School, as well as a coach since he was 21 of wrestling, baseball and softball in Roxbury, Hopatcong and Mt. Olive- Romano appreciates the competition and willingness to guide his team to improve every year.

“To get to the next step,” he says the team needs “to continue doing what we’re doing. Play softball over the summer,” and play other sports to keep the body conditioned is important.  “A lot are multi-sport athletes which is big,” playing volleyball, soccer, field hockey and basketball.

“They put the bat down and enjoy being a student athlete,” says Romano.

“Unfortunately, we lost,” he concludes. “The thing that makes this team special is a no quit attitude. Doesn’t matter what the score is… comes with the drive, you can’t coach that. That’s why we were so successful.”


Career Center Opens At Local Library For Businesses To Meet

By Cheryl Conway

With more companies running their businesses without an office building, the need for space to hold meetings or presentations may be growing.

Working at home can be great for an entrepreneur and employees, but sometimes the need for sitting around that board table to hammer out ideas or view slides remains. Aware of this issue, The Mt. Olive Public Library now provides a new Career Center free to use by local residents, and for a small fee to those living outside of Mt. Olive.

The MOPL celebrated the completion of its new Career Center with an open house held on June 2, from 12:30 p.m. to 3:30 p.m., sponsored by the Library’s Board of Trustees. The newly refurbished and redesigned space now offers this convenient location to hold business meetings, training sessions and private conferences.

“This place is ready for our residents if they do come here in need,” says Mauro Magarelli, director of the MOPL.

With a multitude of resources, computers, rooms for story times and other events, more libraries are providing space for businesses to utilize, explains Magarelli.

This is a “space for career people,” says Magarelli, “that’s the forgotten group. A lot of libraries are thinking of that now too. A lot of entrepreneurs who do not have space. There is interest in doing this throughout the state.”

Magarelli thought of the idea for “a private space in libraries for business” a few years back when he began as library director.

“When I started here three years ago, I noticed I had a computer lab underutilized,” says Magarelli, with outdated computers that students were not using. He also noticed a lot of adult learners looking for space.

The new Career Center can be reserved for interviews, skype calls, meetings and board room meetings, says Magarelli.

“That’s the purpose,” Magarelli says, to be used by “local businesses, career people, law enforcement, teachers, space to do work.”

The Career Center is in the far end of the library near the administrative offices and near the magazines, explains Magarelli.

It’s “not a huge room,” says Magarelli, adding that it can fit 12 to 15 people. It is a “typical office board room.”

To prepare the room, Magarelli had the old computers removed and the room remodeled. A student from Kean University studying design offered to complete the room for course-work credit.

With a limited budget, Magarelli says, this “gave us a really good starting point.”

Remaining funds came from the Friends of MOPL and private donors, he adds. Out of a $5,000 budget, the room was so far completed for less than $3,500, he adds.

The “board room setting” features a large board-room style table, eight chairs, projector screen, white board, WIFI and small side desk on the far end for a laptop or computer, he explains.

Magarelli describes the room as a “modern room to conduct business” strictly for “people looking for space to do work,” rather than tutors or private study which “95 percent of the library” can be used for.

His hope is to add resources to make the room more of a resource center with business books and other materials. One idea is to offer the Gale Small Business Builder, a step by step planning tool with tutorials to guide individuals on how to start, manage and optimize a business or nonprofit.

“It’s a work in progress,” says Magarelli, “I don’t have a work crew.” Completion of the room took about a year, he says, with new carpeting installed and wallpaper lining one side of the room. “It’s an evolving room” with maybe more devices to come.


Magarelli stresses that the Career Center is not a place for businesses to make money, but more of a space to utilize as a means to operate a business or “plan out detail.”

He says “it’s a meeting space, workspace. People don’t come in here to make a profit.” 

So far the room has been used by about three or four small businesses, the Friends of MOPL, for an instructional course, language course for adults and sign language, he says.

They have used the white board and computer; “they hash it out and they’re done. They seem very grateful for the space.”

It is free to Mt. Olive residents, those working in non-profit businesses, and is also open to non-residents to reserve for a small fee of $25, he says. The room is locked and must be reserved to utilize. To reserve, call the library administration office at 973-691-8686, ext. 100.

Time restrictions may apply based on demand and availability, says Magarelli.

“There are some limitations for fairness,” says Magarelli, as “we don’t want people monopolizing the room.”

Local Library News


Movies, Aliens and Astronomy Takes Over At Library 

Take a break from splashing and soaking up the sun and head over to the Mt. Olive Public Library.

On Monday, July 1, The Lego Movie will be featured at 1 p.m.

On Monday, July 8, Universe of Sounds is set for 12:30 p.m.

Tuesday, July 9, Galaxy Jar is at 7 p.m.

Thursday, July 11, Aliens:  Escape from Earth is at 1p.m.; Special event, Astronomy After Dark is at 8 p.m.

A teen program is set for Wednesday, July 10, at 7 p.m., titled Cosmic Bath Bombs.

Go to to register.

Library Hosts Out Of This World Events 

Mt. Olive Public Library is “Ready to Launch” this Summer with “Out of this World” Events for our Adult Summer Reading Program 2019: “A Universe of Stories” June through August!

Join in at the Gathering Room on Tuesday, July 9, at either 1 p.m.-3 p.m. or 6 p.m.-8 p.m. for the movie “First Man,” the riveting story of NASA’s mission to landing a man on the moon. It explores the sacrifices and cost on the nation; one of the most dangerous missions in history!

Registration requested. Call 973-691-8686 ext. 106 or go to to register.

On Saturday, July 13, at 10 a.m.-11 a.m., check out “Solar Viewing” as Pearl Observatory will set up its equipment at the library to view the sun in a safe Solar Telescope. Rain dates are either: Saturday, Aug. 3, or Saturday, Aug. 17.

Registration required; limited to 20 adults. Go to to register.

On Saturday, July 13 at 1:30 p.m.-2:30 p.m. stop in to listen to “The Music of Summer: Featuring the Sun, Moon & Stars.” Acclaimed international concert violinist, Dr. David Podles, will take listeners on a “celestial” musical tour featuring pop, classical, and jazz songs.

Registration requested. Call 973-691-8686 ext. 106 or go to to register.

To celebrate the 50th anniversary of the Apollo 11 Moon landing on July 20, 1969, the library plans to host a presentation titled, “The Space Race: 1957-1975” on Tuesday, July 16, at 6:30 p.m. in the Gathering Room.

Join author Kevin Woyce to relive those dramatic days with historic photographs/vintage concept art, be introduced to the visionaries and scientists who made space travel possible, and the American astronauts who boldly traveled “Where no one has gone before!”

Registration requested. Call 973-691-8686 Ext. 106 or go to to register.

Around the town

Golf Tournie Supports American Liver Foundation

The Market Place & Tavern is sponsoring its 2nd Annual Golf Tournament Honoring Jeff Kamin on Monday, July 15, from 7:30 a.m. to 6 p.m., at the Flanders Valley Golf Course in Flanders. Proceeds will go directly to the American Liver Foundation.

After more than a year in recovery, Kamin is fighting the fight and his progress is gaining momentum. Sick for a few months before they uncovered the disease, Kamin was very fortunate to have been selected as a recipient, due to the severity of the disease, for this operation. Kamin is progressing to the point that he finally asked Michelle for her hand in marriage. A wedding is planned for November of 2019.

The mission of the American Liver Foundation (ALF) is to facilitate, advocate and promote educational support and research for the prevention, treatment and care of this disease. Donations will help bring awareness to liver disease and provide financial support for educational programs and patient services offered to the millions of Americans battling one of the 100 liver diseases.

Join in the celebration of Kamin’s road to recovery at the golf outing. Now is the time. Prizes will include: Team Winner; Longest Drive; Closest to Pin.

Continental Breakfast is set for 7:30 a.m. at Market Tavern. Registration is at 8:30 a.m. at Flanders Valley Golf Course. Tee-Time: 9 a.m. at Flanders Valley Golf Course. Banquet Reception: 3 p.m. – 6 p.m. at Market Tavern.

RSVP at 973-997-3506 or

Sponsorships include: Breakfast: $200; Luncheon: $200; Golf Cart: $250; Closest to Pin: $250. Golfer Pricing: Individual: $150; Foursome: $600; Dinner Only: $100.

For those who can't attend, optional donation appreciated.

Each player package includes green fees, cart, gift, buffet luncheon, on-course refreshments, contests and dinner reception.

Please send payment of cash or check payable to Kamin Open, and Mail to Bruce Wallace, 76 Clover Hill Drive, Flanders, N.J. 07836

Water Report Is In

Please be advised that the Township of Mt. Olive

"Annual Drinking Water Quality Report" is available

on-line by logging into the following link:

Hard copies are also available in the Tax Office at

Town Hall or by calling 973-584-7086.






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Shelter For Battered Women Seeks Support

Thanks to the Columbia Bank in Fairlawn for picking up the mortgage note for seven shelters for battered women and children, Strengthen Our Sisters will not lose its houses.

“However, we are living in a world where single mothers are losing their children and are being abused not only by violence, but also poverty,” says SOS Founder Sandra Ramos. “Many have come to the shelter for safety. Strengthen our Sisters (SOS) provides that haven, despite many obstacles, which includes lack of government funding, and operating with a volunteer staff.”

Now the shelter has had its utilities turned off and others are pending.

“We are behind in our utilities in our efforts to keep our mortgage current,” says Ramos. “For the continuance of the shelter to break the cycle of poverty and abuse, we need support. We are seeking contributions and monthly pledges to Strengthen Our Sisters domestic violence shelter. We are a nonprofit 501c3, and your donations are tax deductible.  For more information, please contact Sandra Ramos @ 973-831-0898. Visit


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Experienced journalist since 1990, living in Flanders for 21 years and covering Mt. Olive Township for the past 10 years.

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