Written by Rich Forestano Friday, 17 January 2014 00:00
Congresswoman Carolyn McCarthy (D-Mineola) announced on Wednesday, Jan. 8 that she would not seek re-election this year. The former nurse has been battling lung cancer since last year.
“It just hits you,” she said. “There’s an expression called “chemo-brain,” which makes you kind of forgetful and tired. I said jokingly ‘That’s great. I can see myself sitting next to my chairman and fall asleep by accident.”
The Mineola resident said that cancer was not the reason she decided to not seek re-election. Ending her run in Congress entered the picture after the December 2012 Sandy Hook shootings in Newtown, Conn.
Sandy Hook, two decades after the tragedy she and her family faced when Colin Ferguson killed six (including her husband, Dennis) and wounded her son Kevin on the Long Island Rail Road, cut her to the core.
“That hit right at the sole of my heart,” she said. At the same time, McCarthy saw others galvanized by their tragedy as she had been by hers, and taking up her cause.
“A lot of the victims got involved and became voices of reducing gun violence,” she noted. “Other voices are speaking up now. We need another face up there.”
McCarthy, 70, grew up in Mineola. A nurse and homemaker at the time of the LIRR shooting, she did not see herself fighting her way on to Capitol Hill. Now, however, she can’t imagine any other path.
“I loved nursing, but one of the things that I found working in Congress is that it’s just like nursing,” she said. “It’s taking care of people.”
In a phone interview with Anton Newspapers, McCarthy noted that she’ll be back in Congress in a couple of weeks. She finished her final round of chemotherapy and radiation last September at Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center in Manhattan.
“I actually felt worse [at the end of chemo than] during the whole treatment. I was getting antsy wanting to get back to work,” she said. “The doctors would always say ‘let’s give it another week.’ The next week would go just into another week.”
While McCarthy loves her job, the typical 70-hour workweek that most congresspeople tackle may be too much, she said.
“I thought about this for quite a long time,” she said. “It was getting harder. And when I go back, I know I’m not going to have the energy I had before.”
However, McCarthy still plans on being active after her run as congresswoman ends. With her cancer battle, the former nurse says she may tackle health issues in the community.
“I couldn’t imagine not being active,” she said. “I think that’s why a lot of politicians hang on so long: because they don’t know what else to do. But I would say to those ones, ‘there is a life out there.’”
Saturday, 08 March 2014 00:00
Jessy Davidson, a student at MacArthur High School in Levittown, organized and held a blood drive at the John Theissen Children’s Foundation on Wantagh Ave. this past weekend.
Davidson, a junior, hopes to earn a small college scholarship through the New York Blood Center Bloodstock Scholarship Program by hosting this blood drive. If at least 30 donors come through, she will qualify for the scholarship.
Anyone who is in high school is able to participate in this scholarship, according to Davidson.
Friday, 07 March 2014 00:00
On Feb. 27, parents in the Levittown, East Meadow, Massapequa and Farmingdale school districts came together for an informal panel discussion on the New York State Education Department and the implementation of the state Common Core Learning Standards.
Panelists included New York State Assemblyman Thomas McKevitt, Jeanette Deutermann of the Long Island Opt Out Facebook page, and former public school teacher David Greene, who came to the Farmingdale Public Library to talk with local parents about key concerns and questions with the curriculum.
An outspoken parent and founder of the Long Island Opt Out movement, Deutermann, delved into some of the factors behind what led to the state’s adoption of the Common Core, and how the state education department cites high school graduation rates as its reasoning behind the curriculum.
Thursday, 06 March 2014 00:00
The Island Trees track program is pleased to announce that four members of the team will be participating in the New York State tournament. Students honored include:
Alexa Dolgos with a personal best of 1.37 in the 600 meter run; Alyssa Mustafa with a personal best of 17 feet, 3.5 inches in the long jump and a personal best of 36 minutes 1.3 seconds in the triple jump competition; Andrew Zabala with a personal best of 43 feet 5 inches in the triple jump; and Joe Stanco with 47 minutes 10.5 seconds in the shot put.
— Submitted by Varsity Track Coach Joseph Manna
Thursday, 06 March 2014 00:00
The Island Trees Bulldogs Wrestling team finished the 2013-2014 season with an overall record of 18-8. The team defeated Syosset in the Dual Meet Championship playoffs 34-27, and then lost to Plainedge in the second round 48-29. The team had a strong season and was ranked no. 8 in Nassau County. The Bulldogs entered 22 wrestlers in the Nassau County Qualifying Tournament, out of which, eleven of the team’s All-League grapplers qualified for the coveted Nassau County Wrestling Tournament. Six wrestlers also received All-Conference honors, with one wrestler earning a wildcard into the tournament, for a total of 12 Island Trees wrestlers competing.