Menendez Statement on the Passing of NJ ‘Monuments Man’ Harry L. Ettlinger

Menendez Statement on the Passing of NJ ‘Monuments Man’ Harry L. Ettlinger

NEWARK, N.J. – U.S. Senator Bob Menendez (D-N.J) released the following statement on the news of the passing of NJ ‘Monuments Man’ Harry L. Ettlinger earlier this week. Ettlinger, 92, was a longtime Rockaway Township resident and recipient of the Congressional Gold Medal after Senator Menendez introduced legislation to bestow the medal on the “Monuments Men”.


“I’m heartbroken to hear of the passing of my friend Harry Ettlinger. The world owes him and all the other ‘Monuments Men’ a great debt of gratitude. With their determination, courage, and sacrifice, Harry and all the others heroes like him, saved some of the greatest cultural treasures in existence.


“New Jersey will always be proud of Harry, and I hope generations to come will remember and honor his heroism in preserving, sustaining, and handing down to our children and our children’s children the pieces of art and culture that represent the Europe and Western Civilization that the Nazis wanted to destroy.  


“It was my honor to bestow Harry Ettlinger with the Congressional Gold Medal in 2015.  And for me, it is a true honor to be fortunate enough to call him my friend. Harry’s children, family and friends will continue to be in my prayers during this time.”


Bob and Harry enjoy a few moments together before the crowds arrive at the Congressional Gold Medal Ceremony


The Monuments Men was a group of approximately 350 men and women from 13 countries who are credited with preserving, protecting, and restoring millions of pieces of artwork, sculptures, and other cultural artifacts in Europe during World War II.  Legislation introduced by Sen. Menendez in Dec. 2013 to bestow these distinguished soldiers with the Congressional Gold Medal was signed into law in May 2014