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Legislator Peter Schmitt Laid To Rest

Family and friends recall a dedicated public official and a loving family man

In the church where Peter Schmitt and his wife Lois were married 38 years ago, family, friends, residents and elected officials gathered to remember the longtime legislator from Massapequa, who died suddenly on Oct. 3. A funeral mass was held on Oct. 8 at St. Rose of Lima Church on Merrick Road, before the longtime Nassau County Legislator was laid to rest at Grace Cemetery, just a few hundred yards east of the church.

“Peter Schmitt will truly be missed, will always be remembered, and will never be replaced,” said Congressman Peter King who spoke at the funeral.

King recalled Schmitt as a man who fought hard for his beliefs and his constituents, and was always honest and direct. In doing so, King said that Schmitt was not afraid to offend the media when fighting for the people he represented. In fact, King joked that he referred to Schmitt as “Mr. Congeniality,” and although he used the term facetiously, he says it was quite appropriate.

“He really was a congenial guy,” King said. “I never knew anyone who was more approachable or who enjoyed giving a helping hand to those who needed it.”

Schmitt’s daughter, Samantha, expressed similar sentiments. She spoke lovingly about her father, and said that despite the gruff exterior that he sometimes presented, Schmitt was a gentle, caring man.

“He may have acted tough, but deep down he was a huge teddy bear,” she said.

Samantha also recalled him as being extremely devoted to his family. She spoke of how her parents met while they were both in college, and 40 years later, they remained best friends, who would walk down a street together holding hands. Samantha also said that she had never seen her father as happy as he was when he would spend time with his only grandson, Logan, even though it was a side to him that the public didn’t always see. In fact, she said that although he loved going into the office, the one thing that could keep him away was his family, and two days before died, Schmitt took the day off to spend time with his grandson. Samantha said that she is very grateful that her father and her son had that one final opportunity to be together.

“I love you Dad,” she concluded, as she spoke through tears.

Associate Pastor, Lachlan T. Cameron, conducted the funeral mass. During the mass, he offered words of assurance to Schmitt’s family. He also had kind words for Schmitt’s widow and said he could easily understand how the couple remained so deeply in love for so many years.

“Lois, I see the graciousness that Peter loved and cherished all the years of your life,” he said to her.

Peter Schmitt was born in 1950. He attended St. Anne’s School in Garden City, Sewanhaka High School and Hofstra University. He had worked for the Town of Oyster Bay before being elected to the Nassau County Legislature in 1995, a position he held until his death. Schmitt is the only person to represent the 12th Legislative District since its inception.

News

Two hundred business students from high schools across Nassau County, including Massapequa High School, competed for scholarships and cash awards—more than $33,000 in all—from various sponsors at Nassau County’s annual Comptroller’s Entrepreneurial Challenge.

The events on Sept. 11, 2001 had a profound effect on nearly all in the tri-state area, but for first responders, the effects were overwhelming. Long-time Massapequa resident Michael Smith, a member of the New York Fire Department, experienced those effects firsthand.

“While I’ve always been a person that could appreciate life, after 9/11 I became so distraught,” he said. “I realized I need to do something I want to do — something I love to do.”

A 30-year veteran of the fire department, Smith retired in 2002. He and his wife of 33 years, Teresa, began to look for a place they could enjoy life. This mindset brought them to the East End of Long Island, where they often went for day trips. They settled down in a home in Orient Point in 2004; in a home that needed quite a bit of work. And when it was time to landscape the property, a new idea took root — a vineyard.


Sports

Massapequa athletes recently received honors from their coaches at Kellenberg Memorial High School.

Each season, the coaches of all of the Kellenberg teams choose one member of their team who stands out as an athlete that has worked hard to improve themselves in their chosen sport.

The Farmingdale State women’s lacrosse team won the first game of their Spring Break trip to North Carolina with a victory over Greensboro College. In wet and muddy conditions, the Rams (8-1) held an 8-5 lead at the half and took the eventual 13-10 win.

In the first half and tied 2-2, the Pride (7-5) pulled ahead 4-2 with two unassisted goals by junior attack Nadya Fedun. Farmingdale State answered with four straight scores for a 6-4 advantage, on goals by juniors Alyssa Handel, Nicole Marzocca and Massapequan Jackie Kennedy.

Sophomore attack Ashlynn Parks put Greensboro within a goal at the 7:03 mark, but the Rams scored two more to lead 8-5 at the halftime break.

Calendar

Free Wine Tasting

Friday, April 18

Boating Course

Saturday, April 26

Massapequa Memories

Tuesday, April 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