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Obituary: Leo Tomei, 90

Mineola resident Leo James Tomei, 90, passed away on Jan. 17 at Winthrop-University Hospital. His graveside ceremony was March 21 at the Long Island National Cemetery.

 

This hard working ageless man was born in Manhattan on Dec. 27, 1923 (the year the first Yankee Stadium was built) but then moved to the Bronx. As a long time Yankees fan having met all the greats sports figures, he then served in the 27th General Hospital serving in Burma/India/China in WWII as a private in the U.S. Army.

 

Tomei was the recipient of the Bronze Star Medal, European African Middle Eastern Service Medal, Good Conduct Medal, and WWII Victory Medal.

 

On Oct. 23, 1955, Tomei married his wife Nina A. Neri whom he adored and he moved to Brooklyn to be near her family to raise four children while working as a sanitation man in Queens. 

 

This workaholic family man finally retired and settled in Mineola. He loved driving his car around town, riding the waves at Jones Beach into his 70s, loved the horses and played OTB and visited Belmont, loved bowling with a passion and achieved 200 scores well into his 80s at Sheridan Bowling Alley on Jericho Turnpike, while boasting being the oldest on the teams. 

 

Before being devastated with losing his wife after 50 years of marriage in 2006 to breast cancer, they were both members of the Mineola Seniors Club.

 

Nicknamed Leo the Lion, he always said his secret to longevity was working hard, loving the Yankees and Jones Beach, bowling, loving his wife and his family, as well as that one glass of Merlot red wine with dinner each night and cheesecake for dessert

 

Tomei’s four children have married and led successful lives, with two still living in Mineola. He is survived by nine grandchildren (three residing in Mineola), whom he adored also.

 

Weigand Funeral home took excellent care of his cremation and military ceremony attended by St Aidan’s deacon.

 

In lieu of flowers, his family has requested donations in his memory to USO and VFW.

News

Senator Jack Martins discussed education, business and drug use among other topics in a an exclusive interview with this newspaper and FiOS 1 News. He’s currently seeking re-election in November, being challenged by Democrat Adam Haber. Pointing to what he called “key legislation,” particularly the tax cap legislation passed in 2011 and prescription drug bill he helped shepherd to enactment, Martins feels New York State is on track to continue fiscal responsibility.

 

“In these last four years, we’ve had four balanced budgets, we’ve cut taxes working together, we have paid off debt, streamlined government, kept spending below 2 percent each one of those years,” Martins said.

A contingent of 80 Mineola runners embarked on their first trek to lower Manhattan last year for the Tunnel To Towers 5K Run through the Brooklyn Battery Tunnel toward the World Trade Center site. This year, the United Mavericks, a networking group of local business people that support local charities and causes, are gearing up surpass that number.

Mavericks reps say they’re half way to gathering 1,000 people to run in the event’s 13th year on Saturday, Sept. 28.

 

The run honors a fireman Stephen Siller, who was enjoying a day off planning to play golf before he learned the Twin Towers were hit by two airplanes during the Sept. 11, 2001 attacks. He was one of the 343 firefighters who died when the towers collapsed.


Sports

Though it had already hosted the series of lacrosse games during the regular season this past spring, Chaminade High School’s new Gold Star Stadium was officially christened on Saturday, Sept. 6, named in honor of the 56 alumni who had perished during combat.

 

“Tradition holds that when one dies in the service a gold star is given to the family,” said Chaminade President Bro. Thomas Cleary. “Our 56 Gold Star Alumni are honored for their selflessness, courage, and integrity.”

Although the expectations for the 2014 Mineola Mustangs boy’s varsity soccer season may be somewhat measured, the team enters the season with the goal of a berth in the Nassau County playoffs. The team is young and inexperienced but there is light at the end of the tunnel.

 

There is considerable talent on the horizon. There are only four starting seniors and five sophomores on the roster. Four year starting senior forward Daniel Pardo returns (19 goals in three seasons) as does senior standout goalkeeper Andrew Pereira.


Calendar

Town Zoning Meeting - September 17

International Night - September 18

Bereavement Support Group - September 19


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