Members of the Scotch Plains-Fanwood Board of Education passed a resolution to rename Park Middle School as the Malcolm E. Nettingham Middle School, as tribute to one of the last living members of the group of elite Black World War II fighter pilots.
The community will have the opportunity to learn about his contributions before the official renaming ceremony on Nov. 11, Veterans Day.
“We are proud to call Mr. Nettingham an alumnus of the district and are excited to honor his memory by renaming the middle school after him,” said Schools Superintendent Joan Mast. “This will allow students for generations to come to learn from Mr. Nettingham’s legacy and continue to celebrate his deep roots in the community and school district.”
Nettingham, a resident of Scotch Plains for nearly a century, died in September 2020. He graduated from Scotch Plains High School in 1936.
Nettinham received the Congressional Medal of Honor in 2007 for his military service and valor. His hometown honored him by making him the grand marshal of the Scotch Plains-Fanwood Memorial Day Parade in 2014. He also was inducted into the first Scotch Plains-Fanwood High School Hall of Fame in 2015.
“Mr. Nettingham typified everything our community values: humility, service to others, inner strength, dedication to family and community, and so much more,” said Park Middle School Principal Jocelyn Dumaresq. “The choice to rename Park Middle School is even more fitting in that it was once Scotch Plains High School, the school from which Mr. Nettingham graduated in 1936.”