2011-07-08 / Columnists

Looking Backward

What The Wave Said 20 Years Ago...

Thanks to non-stop efforts by City Councilman Walter Ward, all Rockaway beaches will be open for the 1991 season and beach cleaning will continue at the level of the past few years. In addition, the beaches will be guarded by a full complement of qualified personnel.

One man with a gun robbed the Norstar Bank on Beach Channel Drive at Beach 66 Street in Arverne at about 2:20 p.m. on June 28. Police say the man produced the gun and passed a note demanding money. The currency was handed over by the teller and the man fled the bank.

Four motor vehicle accidents, one in which a drive died when his automobile flipped over, at approximately the same location marred driving last weekend where Beach Channel Drive merges with the Gil Hodges Memorial Bridge last Saturday.

Spurred by Police Captain Richard Savage, the commanding officer of the NYPD’s Tactical Narcotics Team (TNT) came back to Rockaway on Monday, July 1, for a 45-day effort that will concentrate on the 101 Precinct area.

Ten-year-old Ruth Valentine, who was struck by an automobile while crossing Shore Front Parkways at Beach 91 Street last Saturday remains in critical but stable condition at Long Island Jewish Hospital’s Schneider’s Children’s Hospital. She was originally treated at the Peninsula Hospital Center in Edgemere, before being transferred to LIJ.

Vince Castellano, the chair for Community Board 14, has asked the city’s corporation counsel to seek an injunction against implementation of the city council’s redistricting plan, which splits the Rockaways and Broad Channel into two districts. He says that the commission that drew up the plans did not fulfill its obligation to the City Charter to keep districts contiguous.

The tenth annual Irish Festival will be held at Beach 108 and Beach 109 Streets on Saturday and Sunday, July 27 and 28 this year. The festival will run each day from noon to 8 p.m. and will feature a number of Irish bands and dance groups performing on the two stages.

The Rockaway Music and Arts Council has already accepted more than 50 vendors, artists and craftspeople who will take part in its annual Fall Festival in September.

30 Years Ago...

State Senator Jeremy Weinstein has announced that it was the Republican majority in the Senate that killed any chance for casinos in Rockaway. He pointed out that the Democrats voted unanimously for the resolution.

The annual dinner of the Rockaway Regular Democratic Club was a recordbreaker in terms of attendance, said club president Geraldine Chapey. Queens District Attorney John Santucci was the honored guest. The master of ceremonies was Sy Sheldon, the Democratic District Leader.

More than 400 people flocked to the Knights of Columbus Hall in Rockaway Beach last week for a rally for human rights in Ireland. According to the event’s coordinator, James Conway Sullivan, the event brought in more than $2,000 in profits.

Construction for a new $35 million hospital building for St. John’s Episcopal Hospital in Far Rockaway is proceeding on schedule. It should be completed late in 1982, according to sources at the hos- pital.

40 Years Ago...

Mario Russo, one of Rockaway’s great tea drinkers, is a great fan of Tom Hetzel, the Rockaway resident who recently swam across the English Channel. Mario says that Tom is so successful because he trains on tea.

Numerous Hudson River steamers have made a successful run to Rock-away. One that did not is the SS Cat-skill, which sank in good weather and lies on the bayfront and Beach 108 Street.

Bayswater residents can take some hope in the fact that the Army Corps of Engineers is discussing installing a pump station at the foot of Bayswater Avenue that would go a long way in reducing the floods that the community faces in times of heavy rainfall.

50 Years Ago...

Quite a few young Rockaway men are wondering which reserve units President John F. Kennedy is going to call up because of the impending Berlin crisis.

Sunday afternoon at about 4 p.m., a man who should have been arrested for indecent exposure, made advances to a young lady on the Boulevard at Beach 92 Street.

There was a loud lament because of the dreary weather over last weekend. Cheer up! There have been summers when it rained every weekend. Everybody hopes that will not be the case this summer.

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