Written by Joe Scotchie Friday, 24 December 2010 00:00
Over the past few years, John Carpenter, known far and wide as the Massapequa Movie Man has turned his town into the Movie Mecca of Long Island, an oasis of culture in suburbia.
But the Movie Man isn’t only about classic movies and independent film production. His life story has also proved to be an inspiration to the New York Veteran Police Association (NYVPA). In 1999, Carpenter was disabled in an accident involving a speeding car. His amazing recovery inspired his award-winning documentary, Smelling Like A Rose. Thankful just to be alive and still working at a profession he loves, Carpenter has also found plenty of time to bring cheer and support to those also suffering from life’s mishaps and sudden turns of events. The documentary also enabled Carpenter to start up his own support programs.
Last month, the NYVPA decided to honor the Movie Man for his numerous acts of kindness. In addition to his work in film, Carpenter also finds time to visit hospitals to bring his message of hope to injured police officers and their families. And for that, Carpenter, while hosting his Charlie Chan double feature last month, was awarded a plaque on behalf of NYVPA President J. Donald Le Blanc. The plaque was formally presented by trustee Richard Ornstein, who is also a longtime associate of the Movie Man.
With the award, Carpenter joins such luminaries as Frank Sinatra, Peter Falk, Telly Savalas, Jerry Stiller, and Abe Vigoda. The NYVPA is locally headquartered in Baldwin and is the oldest and largest police association with over 50,000 members both active and retired.
NYVPA honorary member Jack LaLanne, another one of the Movie Man’s many admirers, sent Carpenter a “box of health,” in this case, hand exercises, a gift to be utilized by all attending film fans.
Continuing his message of good cheer, Carpenter advises his audiences, that in the spirit of Sinatra himself, “the best is yet to come” especially for all of those who learn and follow on the right side of life’s road.