Jersey City HS to honor 1960s grad who fought in war, then fought against it

Jersey City HS to honor 1960s grad who fought in war, then fought against it. Clarence Fitch’s legacy will forever have a home at Ferris High School. The walkway from the main entrance of the Jersey City school to the school’s annex will be named in honor of former student, Vietnam War veteran and peace activist, Jersey City school district officials said.

The announcement will be made officially at a public meeting at the Ferris High School library at 11 a.m. Monday

Fitch, who attended Ferris High School in the mid 1960s, was a member of the swimming team and upon his graduation joined the Marines and fought in the Vietnam War. During his service, he earned a Purple Heart for his heroism on the battlefield. However, his post-war efforts regarding the mental health of returning soldiers was his true life’s work.

“He was a spokesperson for those who didn’t have a voice,” said Superintendent Franklin Walker. “He helped transform thousands of lives by being there for those who had to experience Vietnam.”

Fitch’s story resembles what many young Americans experienced after witnessing the horrors of the Vietnam War and returning home to try to reintegrate themselves within society. Upon his return from Vietnam, Fitch struggled to find his place at home: turning to heroin and fighting his battle with AIDS.
Walkway at Ferris High School to be renamed for Clarence Fitch

This walkway at Ferris High School will be renamed for Clarence Fitch, a former Ferris star and Vietnam veteran. (Reena Rose Sibayan | The Jersey Journal)

Nevertheless, Fitch eventually found his place in society. Fitch turned to anti-war activism and spent years sharing his story, speaking to high school students on the effects of war, and traveling the world to spread his message.

Fitch, who died in 1990 at the age of 42, spent his remaining years as the East Coast Coordinator of the Vietnam Veterans Against the War and working for the U.S. Postal Service, where he became a leader in the union.

He also became involved in the community, pushing against military recruiting in high school and dedicating his time to educating the younger generations on the difficulties he went through so they may avoid the same path.

Fitch spent his life helping others and after his death, his close friend, Tami Gold, put into motion “Another Brother,” a documentary Fitch’s life.

Stimulus check update: IRS sends 2.3M more payments. Here’s who is getting them.

In the past two weeks, the Internal Revenue Service has sent out another 2.3 million stimulus payments from the $1.9 trillion American Rescue Plan, the agency said.

In all, it has sent out more than 169 million payments worth approximately $395 billion since the payments started going out on March 12, the IRS said. The payments are worth up to $1,400 for eligible individuals and up to $2,800 for eligible married couples.

To qualify for the full payment, singles must have adjusted gross income of $75,000, while married couples must have adjusted gross income of less than $150,000.

More than 900,000 of the payments, worth about $1.9 billion, went to eligible people for whom the IRS previously didn’t have enough information to issue the payments, it said.

It also included more than 1.1 million so-called “plus-up” payments, which are paid to people who previously received payments but were eligible for a new or larger payment based on their 2020 tax returns. These were worth about $2.5 billion, the IRS said.

In all, the agency has sent out more than 8 million “plus-up” payments, it said.

More than 1.2 million of payments in this batch were delivered via direct deposit, while the rest were mailed by paper check, it said.

“Although payments are automatic for most people, the IRS continues to urge people who don’t normally file a tax return and haven’t received Economic Impact Payments to file a 2020 tax return to get all the benefits they’re entitled to under the law, including tax credits such as the 2020 Recovery Rebate Credit, the Child Tax Credit, and the Earned Income Tax Credit,” the IRS said. “Filing a 2020 tax return will also assist the IRS in determining whether someone is eligible for an advance payment of the 2021 Child Tax Credit, which will begin to be disbursed this summer.”

The extended child tax credit will give eligible parents up to $3,000 for each child aged 6 to 17 and up to $3,600 for children 5 and under.

Parents will start to receive monthly payments, up to $250 for each older child or up to $300 for each younger child from July through December, adding up to half of the credit’s value. The other half will come to parents when they file their 2021 tax return.

Single parents are eligible for the full credit if they earn up to $75,000. Married parents who file a joint return and earn up to $150,000 also get the full amount.

Once you hit those income limits, the credit is reduced by $50 for every $1,000 of adjusted gross income until the credit reaches $2,000 per child. That level would be reached for singles who earn up to $95,000 and married couples who earn up to $170,000.

Then, the credit stays at $2,000 until singles reach $200,000 of income or married couples reach $400,000 jointly. At that point, there is a separate phase-out until the credit is exhausted, which happens an income level of $240,000 for singles and $440,000 for those married filing jointly.