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Letter: Board Of Pod People

When we first campaigned for two of the trustees who still sit prominently on the Island Trees Board of Education, we had such hope and faith in them. Together, we were going to win the Memorial School’s name back and replace the old boys’ club with honest, caring people. There was talk of a new superintendent, solar energy and running a clean administration with all-American values. When the votes were counted and we won two seats, we were so excited. We were in good hands. 

 

And at first we were. The Island Trees Memorial Middle School was rededicated. Our two trustees put in thousands of hours—attending dozens of meetings, studying stacks of material and scrutinizing the budget. It was tedious work, often boring, and it took them away from their families and leisure time. They were hard workers. 

 

Then, fairly rapidly, a horrible thing  happened—our board members, the people we campaigned for—morphed into their own old boys’ club. It was like “The Invasion of the Body Snatchers.” It was like pods had taken over the people we had voted for. 

 

Fast forward to 2014. Now we’re not only fighting to preserve our beloved hero Lt. Stephen E. Karopczyc’s name on his building, we’re fighting for the actual building, and Mrs. Gallow’s school, and our public library, and the land on Farmedge Road. 

 

Plus, we’re also battling to keep our Levittown way of life—sing-family homes and wide green fields for the children. Not a massive project with a big black-top parking lot, and hundreds of vehicles choking our streets. 

 

How did this happen? How did people we believed in, people we trusted—how could they even consider selling Stephen’s school to a ruthless developer who doesn’t care one iota that the school is dedicated to a U.S. Congressional Medal of Honor recipient? 

 

What happened to the board’s sense of honor and pride? They should be setting the standard and setting it high. They should be moving heaven and hell to keep that building in A-1 shipshape condition. But what are they doing? They’re plotting to take a sledgehammer to our hearts and bring eternal shame on Island Trees. 

 

And all this baloney about renaming something for these “historic figures” shows how a school board and a staff of highly educated people just don’t get it. They consistently value a college degree over a private first class. 

 

We should not have to tell the board members what’s right and what’s wrong. They should know. How could good people go so terribly wrong? 

 

Blame it on human nature. Call it elitism. In the end, it’s just plain sad that a campaign which started out with so many exciting ideas and positive plans, and a grand sweeping spirit of America came full circle—back to an old boys’ club. 

 

I urge everyone to vote for Brian Fielding, Paul Giambona, and Mike Rich who—in big block letters—clearly pledge to save our memorial, our schools and our library. In doing so, they will be saving the very soul of Island Trees. 

 

Dale Bertan

 

Island Trees Class of ‘68

News

In response to the county’s fly-by-night decision to remove 176 old oak trees along Seaman’s Neck Road, earlier this month, New York State Sen. Kemp Hannon has issued a letter to Nassau County Department of Public Works Commissioner Shila Shah-Gavnoudias regarding constituents’ concerns with the appearance of the roadway.

In his letter, Hannon asks Commissioner Shah-Gavnoudias if the removal of the trees were under the jurisdiction of LIPA or PSEG.

“If not, I would like to know who made the decision to remove these trees and why,” Hannon states. “I request you review this case and take whatever course of action necessary.”

U.S. Navy Veteran Richard Meyerowitz of Levittown joined the military in 1962, enlisting straight out of high school. While he would never see combat, Meyerowitz served as a boilerman aboard the U.S.S. Dewey amid the United States’ blockade of Cuba.

“They gave us our orders,” Meyerowitz said, “turn any vessels away. If not, blow ‘em out of the water.”

During the blockade, Meyerowitz said he only encountered one ship, which they warned to turn back. Just a kid at the time, Meyerowitz said it didn’t occur to him at the time, how the country could have been on the verge of nuclear war.


Sports

Christopher Joseph of Levittown was recently selected to play on the United States world university hockey team in Italy this year. A 2009 MacArthur High School graduate, Joseph was captain of his high school team for two seasons, leading them to two championships. Joseph would later go on to play junior hockey for New York Apple Core and the New Jersey Rockets junior ‘A’ team.

Joseph’s parents, Hal and Theresa, along with his brother Robert and sister Kristin said they are very proud of Christopher’s accomplishments and are cheering him on as he heads off to Italy.

Farmingdale State College had four players named to the 2014 D3baseball.com All-New York Team. Senior outfielder Edward Bergmann of East Meadow, earned First Team honors, while junior shortstop Anthony Alvino of Lindenhurst was named to the Second Team. Junior outfielder Michael Marino of Franklin Square and sophomore pitcher Alex Weingarten of East Rockaway also earned Third Team honors this year.

Bergmann batted a team-leading .421 this season and also led the Rams in hits (53), runs scored (42), doubles (8), on-base percentage (.503), stolen bases (30) and held a perfect fielding percentage. Nationally, Bergmann ranks 4th for stolen bases per game (0.88), 10th in stolen bases, 23rd in both on-base percentage and batting average and 29th in runs scored per game (1.21).


Calendar

BOE Planning Session

Wednesday, Aug. 27

Bad Seed Auditions

Thursday, Aug. 28

Close Encounters with Benevolent ETs

Friday, Aug. 29



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