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The Dangerous Road

Community calls for changes in wake of crash

Neighbors report that the stretch of Conklin Street where a crash early Saturday morning killed five Farmingdale teenagers is a well-known trouble spot.

“I have been pushing for a red light on one of these two corners,” said Anthony Vitale, who lives near the scene and is a former member of the Farmingdale Board of Education. “You cannot make a turn here, either on Staples Street or Oakview Avenue because you can’t see anything coming from that side. We need a traffic light...usually when there is a light, cars tend to slow down.”

 

Daniel Romano, manager of Frankee’s East Side Gourmet Restaurant, joined many others in Farmingdale calling for changes in the area.

 

“There should be speed bumps on that street,” Romano said. “It is unfortunate that we have to learn after an incident like this. It should have been prevented years ago.” 

 

Conklin Street is the local name for State Route 24, which is also known as Fulton Avenue and Hempstead Turnpike in other parts of Nassau County. Over the past decade, an average of three pedestrians have died each year on this roadway, making it one of the most treacherous in the state. Statistics on vehicular accidents preceding Saturday morning’s crash were not immediately available. 

 

According to police, the 2001 Nissan was westbound on Conklin Street when it crossed into the eastbound lanes and collided with a GMC Suburban driven by a Maryland resident, who police identified only as a 53-year-old man. His passenger was identified only as a woman.

 

One teenager was pronounced dead at the scene, and two more died upon impact, said police. Another was pronounced dead at the hospital. Cody Talanian, 17, was taken to the hospital in serious condition and died Sunday evening. The occupants of the Suburban were hospitalized in serious condition, said authorities.

 

Restaurant manager Romano remembered the students. 

 

“They were just here four days ago,” he said. “These were not kids who got in trouble. These were ‘golden’ kids. They were never negative, always smiling, always happy.”

 

Romano said that the restaurant will hold a fundraiser to help the victims’ families. 

 

Local officials are determined to prevent a repeat of the tragedy.

 

“What the mayor and deputy mayor and this board will do in the next week or so is write a letter to the traffic safety [division of the] DOT of New York State and ask them to please review the traffic patterns on Rt. 24, and especially on Rt. 109 where there have been more fatalities, and come up with some measures that can help abate traffic safety,” said Mayor Ralph Ekstrand.

News

Lt. Matt Komorowski of Farmingdale was recently honored with the first annual American Heroes award, for showing bravery when faced with impossible odds. 

 

On Sept. 11, 2001, Komorowski was one of  six FDNY firefighters with Ladder Co. 6, called to the World Trade Center just a short while before the tower collapsed. Arriving at the scene, Komorowski and the members of his ladder company rushed inside the building. As they rushed up the stairs the men of Ladder 6 stopped to assist Josephine Harris, a then 60-year-old Brooklyn grandmother, who was stuck in the stairwell of the building. 

Thirteen years since the tragic events of Sept. 11, 2001, hundreds of residents flocked to Town Park Point Lookout, to witness a compelling new memorial tribute honoring all those who lost their lives that day.

 

At the center of the ceremony were two 18-foot-tall, sand-crafted tribute towers set against a 35-foot-long “Wall of Heroes” mural, which depicts the Manhattan skyline, and a reflecting pool at the base of the memorial display. 


Sports

 

The 2014 Farmingdale Flag Football season kicked off with a blast on Sept. 7.

 

3rd Grade Division

 

The Texans and the Jets played a great opening weekend game, with the Texans getting the victory.  For the Texans, touchdown pass from Joseph Spano to Jaxon Parisi with 20 seconds in the half broke a tie that the Jets never came back from.  The Jets were led by Brendan O’Keefe, who had two rushing touchdowns and Jimmy Caputo, who picked off a pass at the goal line.

 

Farmingdale State College’s women’s tennis team opened the 2014 season with an 8-1 victory over John Jay College (0-1) on Sept. 3. The Rams (1-0) held a 2-1 advantage after doubles play before sweeping the singles matches.


Calendar

Board of Education - September 17

A Town of the Taste - September 18

Evening with Jeffery Wands - September 19


Columns

1959: The Year The Music Stopped Playing
Written by Michael A. Miller, mmillercolumn@gmail.com

The Eccentric Heiress Of ‘Empty Mansions’
Written by Mike Barry, MFBarry@optonline.net

Yellow Margarine And A Pitch For The Ages
Written by Michael A. Miller, mmillercolumn@gmail.com