2003-04-05 / Community

‘Support Our Troops’ Rally Set For Today

By Howard Schwach
‘Support Our Troops’ Rally Set For Today By Howard Schwach

The rally to show support for American troops fighting in the war zones in Iraq and Afghanistan will take place today, Saturday, April 5 at 2 p.m., with the supporters gathering nearby the boardwalk on Beach 116 Street in Rockaway Park.

The rally, sponsored by an ad-hoc group of Rockaway residents and civic groups seems to have taken on a life of its own. It is expected that Army units from Fort Tilden will join as will many city workers and residents.

"We were hoping that hundreds of people would attend, but now we hear it may be more like thousands," said one of the organization’s coordinators. "We are just a group of local people responding to what we hear in the community and what we hear is that the majority of people support the armed forces."

There have been a number of other shows of support for our armed forces in the past week.

The Rockaway Beach Civic Association (RBCA) is asking all residents to tie a yellow ribbon around a tree nearby their homes.

The Rockaway Chamber of Commerce recently tied yellow ribbons around all of the trees in the Beach 116 Street shopping area.

"To show our support, we are asking all our neighbors to fly their flags proudly and to join us in tying a yellow ribbon around all of the trees in our community, Christine James, an RBCA spokesperson said. "Our troops deserve nothing less."

"We have been inundated with questions about attending the rally," a spokesperson for the rally said.

Assemblywoman Audrey Pheffer urges Rockaway residents to join in the support.

"We are all praying for a speedy resolution to the war in Iraq and for the safe return of all of our troops abroad," Pheffer says. "It would be wonderful for every tree in Rockaway to be tied with yellow ribbons."

City Councilman Joe Addabbo, who was one of only 17 council members to vote against the council resolution opposing the war, told The Wave, "No matter whether you support the president or disagree with him and with the war, you should support our troops, those men and women who are putting their lives on the line for our freedom. They deserve our support."

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