2002-09-14 / Columnists

Simon Says….

From the Desk of Lew M. Simon,
Democratic District Leader, 23rd A.D. Part B
Simon Says…. From the Desk of Lew M. Simon, Democratic District Leader, 23rd A.D. Part B

From the Desk of Lew M. Simon,
Democratic District Leader, 23rd A.D. Part B

To my Jewish friends, may you have an easy fast and may you be inscribed in the Book of Life.

Our next Atlantic City bus trip to Trump Marina will be on Saturday, September 21. The cost is $28 with $16 returned. We leave at 5:30PM and return at 8AM. Several seats are still left.

Our 15th Anniversary Annual Dinner Dance honoring outstanding community leaders will be held Thursday, October 10 at Rockaway's Beach Club. The honorees are Harolyn Fritz, UFT District 27 Representative, Alphonse Catanese Jr. and Thomas Catanese, Two Brothers Construction, Timothy Keenan, Chief of Broad Channel VFD and Youth Officer Daniel O'Brien, 100 Pct. The cost for dinner and live music is $50 per person. A table of 12 is $600. Please make checks payable to the Good Government Regular Democratic Club and send them to 112-20 Beach Channel Drive, Rockaway Park, NY 11694 by October 1, 2002. For further information, call the office. Dinner tickets are going fast and reservations are a must.

All property owners living in their own homes in New York State are entitled to School Tax Relief (STAR). This includes owners of coops and condos. Mitchell Lama coops are now included. There are additional benefits available to seniors, disabled and veterans and their families.

To get an application on the internet go to www.nyc.gov/finance, call the STAR office at (212) 361-8215 or write to the NYC Department of Finance, STAR Exemption Program. 66 John Street, 13th Floor, NY, NY 10038.

We wish to congratulate Grace McCloskey for the wonderful job that she did for the RMAC for coordinating and signing up Cherish the Ladies for RMAC's best Irish concert ever. Congratulations for the most successful concert of the series. We look forward to next year. Thanks Grace.

On Sunday, September 1, we attended the annual Mardi Gras in Roxbury. It was in memory of all the people lost on 9/11 and 11/12. Even with heavy rain at times, it did not deter the Roxbury community from dressing in costumes and marching down every walk in the community.

I had the honor and pleasure of once again marching in the Mardi Gras parade. The people of Roxbury are warm, kind and generous. They make you feel like one of the family and welcome you with open arms. After this beautiful display and parade we were invited to several houses for a bite to eat with them. God bless the spirit of the people of Roxbury. Mother Nature cannot destroy a good time.

On Tuesday evening, we attended the WTC Memorial meeting of the future park to be built on Beach 116 Street. I sit on the fund-raising and design committees. Next Tuesday, September 17, at 6 p.m. will be the groundbreaking of this beautiful park. People can purchase bricks to be used for the walkway. Your brick can name a loved one or in memory of someone. If you are interested in fundraising and buying a brick you can get in touch with me or by calling the Chamber of Commerce.

On Friday afternoon, we attended the annual raffle luncheon of the VFW Ladies Auxiliary Post 8540 located in the Point. The officers are Kay Kinnane, President, Catherine Hibbits, Vice President, Jean Arienza, Jr., V.P., Mary Kemper, Treasurer, Edna Lynch, Secretary and Josephine McGonagle, Chaplain. St. Thomas More was packed. They had great prizes and a lot of fun was had by all.

We are saddened by the loss of Walter G. Geisler, a neighbor, friend and someone who I would consider like a father to me. I grew up with his son Wally and daughter of Michelle. His wife Yolanda was like a mother to me. Through the years we have considered ourselves like family. As a child growing up in Arverne, I delivered papers to Walter. Then we all had the pleasure of moving to Bay Towers in the same building and same floor.

Walter was a kind, gentle, considerate neighbor who was always friendly. This man has definitely made it into God's kingdom as an angel. My heart goes out to the family. We know it is never easy to lose a loved one.

On Tuesday, September 3 a candlelight vigil memorial led by Rev. Powell of the First Congregational Church was held for Evelyn Todd. The Edgewater Volunteer Fire Department of the Bronx and a biker's group as well as yours truly showed up to pay respects to a fine neighbor who we tragically lost.

Evelyn Todd was a long term resident of Rockaway. She was a lieutenant in the Auxillary Police and a school crossing guard. She was a neighbor's neighbor always looking out for others. She was the caretaker for Estelle Baker who is mentally challenged. Estelle unfortunately witnessed the accident, which took Evelyn's life. Evelyn was a grandmother and great grandmother. She had a close relationship with her son, Corey Todd.

My heart goes out to the family. May she rest in peace. We know that she definitely made it to heaven as an angel.

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