yearbook photo

Hackensack High School
Yearbook Photo


In February 2004, Clifford H. Coyman sent me (Bob Meli) this general information on his
older brother, Milburn W. Coyman.

          Millburn W. Coyman, the older brother of Ernest Coyman Class of 1939 and Clifford H. Coyman Class of 1944, graduated from Hackensack High School in 1938.  We do not know as of this present time (May 22, 2011) what Millburn did from 1938 until he entered the Army in May of 1943. 
Millburn W. Coyman while fighting on the Island of Guam in the Pacific Theater was killed in action on July 26, 1944.  During the battle for Guam from July 21, 1944 until August 8, 1944,
1,747 Americans were killed while 6,053 were wounded. 

On May 28, 2011, I (Bob Meli) received a letter from Harry Lenzing, a 1952 Hackensack High School graduate, said Millburn W. Coyman’s name was missing from the 1946 Hackensack High School Dedication page. I checked this out and found that he is missing from the Hackensack High School 1946 Dedication page and Millburn W. Coyman’s name is also not on the Plaque at City Hall in Hackensack.  Millburn W. Coyman is listed with a star on our website list having been killed on the island of Guam in the Pacific Theater during World War II and he served with the 77th Infantry Division known as the ‘Statue of Liberty Division’ according to Harry LenzingHarry Lenzing said that Millburn W. Coyman lived on Dock Street in Hackensack at the time.  

Millburn W. Coyman received the Purple Heart for his sacrifice.  

Let us never forget the soldiers sacrifice.  

Written by:
Bob Meli

 May 22, 2011

In 2017, I brought it to the attention of the City Counsel of Hackensack that Millburn W. Coyman’s name was not on the World War II Plaque at City Hall. I explained that his family of six children was very poor before and during World War II because their father, a grave digger, had been killed by a drunk driver in the late 1930’s.

Millburn W. Coyman, the oldest, and Ernest Coyman, his brother, were well out of school and working before being drafted, but Clifford Coyman, the youngest, was being raised by their mother who would clean laundry and run the elevator at Hackensack Hospital for a living, so few people knew of them.

Clifford Coyman, the youngest of the three, would come by my Grandparent’s house after school every day till his mother got home from work.  Clifford Coyman became well known in Hackensack, spending his whole life in the town. During his life he became President of United Jersey Bank. I explained that the family either did not realize or just did not want to make a fuss over Millburn’s name not being on the plaque.

It is not easy for City Council’s to alter such historic plaques without good reason, so when I went to the Hackensack City Hall on November 20, 2018 to see if the City Council had added
Millburn W. Coyman’s name, I felt a great feeling of gratitude that they had been able to add his name.

Click here to view.

Written by:
Bob Meli
November 20, 2018


Click here to view Millburn W. Coyman grave marker at Punch Bowl Cemetery in Hawaii and other information researched by George Toriello



Background image of Heavy Combat Fighting in Guam during World War II obtained from: