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Vigilante Returns to Town Council

Five years after losing his bid for re-election to the council, James Vigilante says, "I'm back, and it feels good."

The Parsippany-Troy Hills Township Council officially has a new member, sort of.

Air Force reservist and businessman James Vigilante, who served on the council from 1995-2007, was sworn in Tuesday night at Town Hall to temporarily fill the seat once occupied by newly appointed Freeholder John Cesaro.

"I'm back, and it feels good," said the new-again councilman after taking the oath of office.

"The last time you were up here, you had a lot more hair," joked Councilman Michael dePierro.

"It's deja vu all over again," said resident Roy Messmer.

In more ways than one. When Vigilante was sworn in for previous terms, the oath was adminstered by Asm. Alex DeCroce presided over the formality.

This time, the 's widow, , did the honors.

"I'm proud to share the honor with you," Vigilante told the assemblywoman.

In his remarks before the council, his family and an audience largely made of up of officers and military veterans, along with citizens present for the council's agenda meeting, the Air Force First Sergeant paid tribute those who serve their country.

He also thanked the council and the Parsippany Republican Municipal Committee, which or and .

Vigilante referenced his and his recent work at a Navy medical center in San Diego ("the Walter Reed Bethesda of the West," he said) helping wounded U.S. soldiers.

"I served with the best of the best," he said. "I've seen veterans with missing limbs trying to walk with prosthetic legs. Between there and what I saw in Afghanistan last year, I wouldn't wish those visions on anyone, but I wouldn't have missed that experience for anything in the world.

"I'm a better man and I appreciate life for whatever it may bring."

Vigilante also talked of moments in a lifetime that radically change an individual's life, events that "shake you to the core and alter the course of your life."

"For me, returning to the Township Council is one of those moments," he said, adding that these rare events, "if you're lucky ... give you a renewed sense of purpose and meaning."

Vigilante said his purpose on the council will be to serve as "a voice of reason and compromise ... optimism, hope and dedication."

The councilman said he considers public service not a title, but a way of life, and announced he would donate 10 percent of his earnings to veteran groups.

Vigilante served on the Town Council for 12 years, but lost his seat five years ago after he opted to forego the Republican primary and instead run for re-election as an independent candidate.

His present council appointment lasts until November, when a . The Parsippany GOP will have to decide on a nominee to take on already announced .

Asked whether he believes the Republican committee will give him the nod to run in the fall to keep the seat, Vigilante said he didn't know.

"I would hope so and would be humble if I were nominated," he said.

clyde donovan July 11, 2012 at 06:18 PM
Parsippany is as corrupt as it gets.
g July 11, 2012 at 06:31 PM
Mr Vigilante shat will you do about Barack Obama sending to Congresshis bill that triples the premiums service people, their families, and retirees will have to pay for TRICARE medical coverage. It’s his special way of thanking the military for keeping America safe.
Selene July 12, 2012 at 03:49 AM
How about a Fall Festival? Why not? Every town has one except Parsippany, what is wrong with our community?
VietNam Vet July 12, 2012 at 07:30 AM
Montville has a festival of sorts each year, but the difference between Montville and Parsippany is the food is FREE in Montville in Par troy you have to buy and pay for everything. You want a can of soda you pay $ 3.00 for it. It turns out its just a day for the businesses to rip you off again and somebody is making alot of money from this. Many of the local service business loses out because the road is closed.
VietNam Vet July 12, 2012 at 07:37 AM
We'll see if Vigilante is going to be vigilent about doing anything in this town this time except to help the mayor rip us off somemore. Mr Vige said taxes go up and there is nothing you can do about that, well thats not true. If you really want to do something for the taxpayers and give them a break for a change, you can do something about it. I moved here 32 years ago from a town that had the lowest tax rates in their county, and they kept it that way for many years and the mayor was very well liked and was re-elected for many years. It just shows you can do something if you put your minds to work to help the people that vote for you, this town doesn't care, they have shown that many time over.
patchitup1 July 12, 2012 at 03:24 PM
The reason we can't afford a fall festival is because THE OVERTIME to the Police is So High!
Selene July 27, 2012 at 03:02 AM
The Fall Festival is ONE day, ONE day and it unites the community. WE don't need the overpaid PO to patrol. We have an army of volunteer fire fighters/ambulance/Rescue & Recovery personnel and if that isn't sufficient "protection" lets consider the REAL cost. If our Mayor and council think a promotional video for $200,000 is mindfull spending and not a Fall Festival I have to wonder who our elected officials really represent. Their own interests? Obviously. BTW Montville has a three day yearly Festival, Denville has three separate community wide events. Local merchants have to suck it up for one day and if you don't want to spend $3 on a soda bring your own beverages. Whiner. Sometimes you have to step back and look at the big picture. A Fall Festival is GOOD for the community and the kids love it, all ages. Hello!!! Costs??? What is our town surplus 9 million? Please.
Selene July 27, 2012 at 03:16 AM
A Fall Festival is small change compared to the businesses we DON'T bring into our town for the kids....a roller rink, an arcade (Funplex), a bowling alley.......however the people bringing in culture and good restaurants are the immigrants. North Beverwyck is becoming an amazing mecca of international cuisine. Thank you to all those amazing small business owners.
Selene July 27, 2012 at 03:20 AM
Where do you get your information? Totally wrong.
Selene July 27, 2012 at 03:21 AM
FOX news?
Natalie Davis (Editor) July 27, 2012 at 03:27 AM
Selene, a correction: The infomercial would have cost just under $20,000.
Selene July 27, 2012 at 03:42 AM
Sorry, still that amount would pay for the township costs of a Fall Festival. As I said there are other sources of "policing" the event, like volunteers from our esteemed fire fighting/resue & recovery/ambulance.
VietNam Vet July 27, 2012 at 05:02 AM
I'm still waiting to see what he's going to do for the people other than go along with whatever the mayor wants, and to raise taxes again and again.

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