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Fire Heroics On Willis Avenue

The horrific fire that took place on Willis Avenue had the potential of being much more destructive than it was. Five stores were destroyed in the catastrophe, yet due to the heroic efforts demonstrated by both the Williston Park firemen and the members of the surrounding districts the fire was contained and controlled within the confines of five buildings. Without the expertise and firematic efforts, the fire could have easily spread both in the business district and the residential area. The fire, which began around 2:45 a.m., which was brought under control fairly rapidly, continued to smolder and burn well into the daylight hours.

Remarkably, it is my understanding that there was only a minor injury to one firefighter. The intensity of the fire coupled with the magnitude of the blaze could have easily led to a number of injuries.

Chief Gary Smithing and Assistant Chief Rich Sais oversaw the operation from beginning to end. On behalf of the Board of Trustees and the residents of Williston Park, I thank all those firemen who were involved in this event. 

While the firemen dealt with the actual fire, a number of individuals working at the scene were instrumental in ensuring, as best as possible, that the area remained as safe as possible. Public Works Superintendent Keith Bunnell was on scene and at the water plant to monitor water flow/water pressure. His work crews assisted whenever needed during the course of the day.

 

Bunnell remained on site well into the evening hours. Building Inspector Kerry Collins was on the scene early and remained at the site well past 11 p.m. to ensure that the area was made as safe as possible in view of the dangerous conditions created by the fire.

 

Thanks go out to residents and business owners who provided support during the fire and after. Hacks Deli, Gino’ Pizzeria and Sangria 71 provided food and water to those working the fire.

 

This event has greatly impacted five business and four property owners. The village has been working with all in hopes of allowing these business owners to move forward as quickly as possible.

 

A disaster of this type will take time to return the area to a normal state but the village will provide direction and assistance whenever possible.

 

I would like to thank all the residents who live on or around Stratford Avenue and Princeton Street for their understanding and patience during the extended road repaving of these roads. The project is mostly complete.

 

The contractor is now required to correct any deficiencies as listed in a  village “punch list.” It is hoped that this work will happen quickly although sod/grass planting needs to wait until cooler weather.

Enjoy the rest of the summer and as always, I ask all to drive safely.


News

The Mineola School Board will hold a public hearing on the much-debated New York State veterans exemption on Thursday, Nov. 6 at 6:30 p.m. in the Willis Avenue School. It is expected the board will either approve or disapprove the tax exemption during its regular meeting at 7 p.m.

When votes go to the polls next week on Tuesday, Nov. 4 to vote on the Town of North Hempstead’s 2nd Council District seat, candidate Bonnie Parente feels her stance on the building department is what voters will remember when casting their choice. The 2nd council district post is currently held by Peter Zuckerman, a former East Hills trustee. He was appointed to the seat in January to replace Thomas Dwyer, who resigned last year.

 

“That’s the major issue I heard about when I knocked on doors,” she said. “No matter where I am, I could be at the Herricks Community Center or the Albertson Pasta Dinner and

predominately what people ask about is how to fix the building department.”


Sports

Samantha Pastore

Samantha Pastore, senior and third-year varsity player, is also co-captain of the currently undefeated (11-0) Mineola Girls Varsity Volleyball team. She is an outside hitter and is often recognized in games by starting rallies with her quick thinking and nimble feet. She earns 20 percent of the team’s points and averages four aces per match.

The Mineola Mustangs varsity football team fell to the Seaford Vikings last week 27-21, missing their chance to tie the top seeds Locust Valley and Roosevelt’s 6-1 Nassau conference IV record.

 

After tying the game in the second half and having the opportunity to capitalize on Seaford’s failed extra-point kick on their final touchdown, the Viking’s senior wide receiver/defensive back Bobby Buell knocked away a pass from Mineola senior quarterback James Gerstner to senior wide receiver Brian Smith in the end-zone with 57 seconds left


Calendar

International Night - October 30

Halloween Parade - October 31

Cultural Arts Series - November 1 


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