Edmund G. Bill, of Garden City, a prominent Garden City attorney and longtime resident of the village, died on Nov. 24, 2004. Ed was a graduate of Fordham University and Fordham University Law School and was admitted to practice in January 1935. Ed had been an attorney for the Superintendent of Insurance for the State of NY Dept. of Liquidation and Rehabilitation in charge of claims of Lawyers Mortgage Company. He practiced law in Garden City for many years and in 1995 became Of Counsel to the firm Cullen and Dykman, now Cullen and Dykman Platt LLP, resident in its Garden City office. He was a veteran of WWII (USNR). He served as director of the Health and Welfare Council of NC and chaired the committee for the Organization and Operation of the pilot program for senior citizens centers and organized "Back to School" days for senior citizens in conjunction with Nassau Community College. He was past chairman of the Advisory Committee of the Office of the Aging, Town of Hempstead and was Region 2 Director of the State of NY for the White House Conference on the Aging for the years 1961-1971. Ed was past chairman of Nassau-Suffolk County's Implementation Committee of the Recommendations of the White House Conference on the Aging and a past director and former member of the executive committee of the Empire State Housing Foundation. He was also a past commander of American Legion Post 265. Ed was an active member of the American Legion, the Holy Name Society, the Rotary, American, NY and Nassau Bar Associations and was recognized for his efforts by the Town of Hempstead, the NC Dept. of Senior Citizens Affairs and the NY Legislature. His late wife, Marie A. Bill, predeceased him in 1999. He is survived by his daughter, Helen Bill Casey, and his grandson, Richard Conway Casey Jr. and numerous nieces and nephews.
Thomas Eugene Fragale
Looking back on the life of Thomas E. Fragale begins decades ago, starting in July of the year 1922. As stated by Clarence in Frank Capra's movie It's a Wonderful Life, Mr. Fragale really did have a wonderful life.
Born in Brooklyn in the thick of the summer of 1922, Mr. Fragale's parents, Joseph and Bettina Fragale, were first generation Italian- Americans. The timing of Mr. Fragale's birth brought him in line to become a vibrant and contributing member to what is surely the greatest generation this country has ever known. Those Americans who lived and fought through the World War II years are directly responsible for the privileged and free lives that we live today. For this Mr. Fragale was forever proud.
Growing up during the Great Depression, he forged powerful skills and values, encompassing a strong work ethic. His ability to craft and work with his hands in repairing and building most anything armed him with an aura of supreme confidence to challenge most anything he put his mind to.
As a boy, he was a Boy Scout and quickly rose to Eagle Scout status, ultimately receiving a prestigious award as one of the top Boy Scouts in New York. Leaving his youth and early teens behind him, Mr. Fragale would go on to become a graduate of Brooklyn College. He joined the war effort via the U.S. Army shortly thereafter. It was the war and World War II that likely played the most pivotal role in his life and surely how he wishes to be remembered.
During his military training, the Army sent Mr. Fragale to the University of Pennsylvania to become an interpreter and translator for the different and potentially expanding theaters of the war. His Calvery's unit might be called to negotiate an escalation of conflicts in China. There he would have worked on a team of instructors to teach the Chinese how to transport military supplies across the rugged China countryside by horse. Such never came to be but, in preparation, he learned to speak many Chinese dialects. In the end, Mr. Fragale gained command of seven languages.
Later he attended military intelligence school at Camp Ritchie, MD to consolidate all his garnered skills for use in the collection of military intelligence for the headquarters of the Pacific.
Soon thereafter, Mr. Fragale was a part of General McArthur's intelligence group at the supreme command for allied forces in the Pacific. He served in the Philippines and later occupied Japan, employing his skills as an interpreter and translator advanced echelon.
Mr. Fragale's highly decorated medals include the Philippine Liberation Medal, the Japanese Occupation Medal, the Asiatic Pacific Victory Medal, the WWII Victory Medal, the American Campaign Medal and the Army Good Conduct Medal.
Unforeseen, a best friendship during the war took Mr. Fragale to Philadelphia and ultimately a small town in Pennsylvania where he was introduced to his wife, Evelyn Sluzas. It was love at first sight and two children, Mark and Susan, were the product of that love. Mr. Fragale and his wife left Brooklyn and purchased a home in Garden City where they lived for 54 years.
Mr. Fragale's family is certain that Thomas Eugene Fragale wants to be remembered as a loving husband, father and provider to his family. Family and friends were always paramount and above all else in his mindset. Beyond that, Mr. Fragale asks that he be remembered as a soldier.