2010-08-20 / Columnists

Looking Backward

What The Wave Said 20 Years Ago...


Violence erupted in Rockaway shortly after midnight last Saturday with a confrontation in which three police officers and a local priest were injured. The riot, which eventually saw more than 150 people fighting, began when police responded to a call for a “large disorderly crowd in front of 433 Beach 40 Street in Edgemere. Responding officers had to quickly call for help when the residents began to throw bottles and rocks at them. During the melee in which the cops were injured, a priest was thrown down the steps inside the building.

A large number of local residents are looking forward to the development of the large tract called the Arverne Urban Renewal Area, according to a recent study completed by the city. The current plan calls for the construction of 7,500 units of middle class housing. “Let’s get the shovel in the ground,” says one local activist. On Monday, the Board of Estimate approved the plan, angering those who want to see ‘affordable housing” only on the 83-acre site.

Queens Inner City Cable Company will begin serving customers on the Rockaway Peninsula on August 27. Rockaway’s first subscriber is Margaret Barnath, 209 Beach 100 Street.

Police officer Ernesto Velez of the 101 Precinct in Far Rockaway was injured last Saturday when a stolen car backed up into his motor patrol car. A Far Rockaway man was arrested and charged with unauthorized use of a vehicle, criminal possession of stolen property and resisting arrest. Officer Velez was treated and released by a emergency medical technicians who responded to the scene.

Congressman Floyd Flake and his wife have pleaded not guilty to charges of embezzlement and tax fraud. Flake arrived at the arraignment last week with three busloads of supporters, all of whom swear that he is not guilty of the federal charges. Flake represents Rockaway in the House of Representatives and is also the pastor the Allen AME Church in Jamaica.

Kevin Watford of Beach 54 Street was injured last week as he was crossing Beach Channel Drive at Beach 65 Street just after midnight last Saturday night. An eyewitness told police that the car who hit Watford fled the scene. Watford was treated and released at Peninsula Hospital.

Local resident Patricia Gorman of Beach Channel Drive has applied for a permit to build a float in Jamaica Bay alongside 114-04 to 115-04 Beach Channel Drive. In her application, Gorman says that the float is needed for the safety of boats waiting to get gasoline and provisions at a nearby dock.

Years Ago... 30

Hilton Head executives as well as executives from other leading hotel chains followed up local discussions about casino gambling proposals for Rockaway by adjourning to a closed meeting so that they could discuss the topic.

Detective Samuel Gibson of the 101 Precinct Squad in Far Rockaway is investigating a Green Bus Line garage robbery that earned three armed men about $10,000 in coins.

Six hundred Rockaway residents have joined Denis Magoolaghan of Dayton Towers East in petitioning for a bottlereturn law in New York State.

Craig Virgin, winner of the Olympic 10,000 meter trial at Atlanta’s Peachtree 10 K race will run in the first South Shore Classic this Sunday in Lawrence.

40 Years Ago...

A loss of water pressure last Sunday afternoon brought the closing of all of the toilets in O’Donohue Park bathrooms to the consternation of many in the large crowd that was using the nearby beach.

There is a possibility that the Rockaway Chapter of the American Red Cross will soon be reactivated. Local opinion is being sought by the organization to gauge interest and find out if there are sufficient volunteers.

Truckloads of rubbish dot the Arverne Urban Renewal Area. It seems to have become the prime dumping spot for the entire city.

Years Ago... 50

Why do bathers run from the ocean when it begins to rain? They don’t want to get wet.

For several days last week, there was a horrendous smell coming from the Wastewater Treatment Plant on Beach Channel Drive at Beach 105 Street. Some locals wanted to protest the smell coming from the plant, but

50 the great majority say that nothing can be done.

Plans are underway for the construction of the new St. Camillus Church on Beach 100 Street and Rockaway Beach Boulevard. It is expected that piles will be driven on the site beginning in the next few weeks.

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