2013-04-26 / Columnists

An Intern’s Take

Hurricane Sandy
By Ilyassha Shivers

I was always under the impression that the word anniversary was associated with celebration. It’s time to look back at some memorable events that have taken place. In the case of Hurricane Sandy I found it a little strange reflecting on an event that caused so much destruction and left our peninsula in a state of emergency. I wanted to get some perspective for this piece so I asked my dad.

My father was born in South Carolina but was raised in the Rockaways, he lived on 75th Street. This was not the first time a storm of this magnitude hit the peninsula. It was 1958 the first day of school, the beach met the bay. The streets were flooded, people had to go down the streets in boats. Ask your parents or grandparents, I bet they can tell you what really happened.

They say hindsight is 20/20 so I had to ask myself how prepared were we for this storm. I know there are signs that mark an emergency evacuation route, but if those roads flood where do we go from there?

That's an issue for another day, let me digress. As families try to rebuild and move on with their lives some things will forever remain the same. Some of you may know that I am a huge sports fan. I wrestled and played football as a child through high school. And more recently, I volunteered as a youth football coach. Sports has always played a major role in my life. Today our youth are not given as many or even the same options we had as children. That’s why it was a breath of fresh air to attend an event sponsored by The Parks Department and the P.A.L. “A Sports Extravaganza at Bayswater Park” was held this past Saturday. The event was filled with children from across the peninsula participating in all types of activities. There were arts and crafts, table games and 3 on 3 basketball tournaments to name a few.

I had the pleasure to meet and interview Mr. Richard C. Guevara, Director of Field Operations for the P.A.L. The P.A.L. has been in existence since 1914. Following Hurricane Sandy a great deal of gymnasiums were flooded and damaged. Many groups have used their funds to repair these gyms. We understand that there are not a lot of leagues, however, support is needed for these programs. The more kids we get involved with sports means there will be fewer kids on the streets. “The P.A.L. is here to support everyone to make his happen,” said Mr. Guevara.

Send your comments and suggestions to shiverswave@gmail, and don’t forget to read The Wave.

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