Years ago, Readers Digest featured an article entitled “The Most Unforgettable Character I’ve Ever Met.” Such a description would certainly be fitting for one of Mineola’s most legendary citizens. Father Vincent Hagan arrived at Corpus Christi Church in 1945 and served in the parish for a good part of his life. During that time, he became one of the most admired figures in town. He had such a high-profile presence in the village that he was recognized and greeted by all residents and merchants, regardless of their religion.
As kids, we loved his friendly personality as well as his mischievous sense of humor, but he inspired just enough fear in us to keep us in line. If any of us tried to put one over on him, he would unleash his verbal wrath and we would definitely hear about it – as would any one else within a two-block radius.
On July 1, the district will be moving to its new website. It will still have the same web address, www.ewsdonline.org, but a new look. Thank you to all who provided feedback on how we could enhance our website features and communication as we worked on developing a new website. We tried to incorporate as much of that feedback as possible. While most material will be migrating to our new website, it will be “under construction” with changes being made during the summer and through the beginning of the school year. Please be patient as we are being trained and learning the new features at the same time it is being developed. We hope you like the new look and we believe it will be easier to navigate and also to access on iPads and iPhones.
Editor’s Note: Lou Sanders, who has his journalism degree from NYU, and his wife, Grace, founded the Mineola American in 1952, giving the village its first successful newspaper. Lou and Grace have lived in Mineola for 59 years, and his popular column is a signature feature of this paper.
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Edward Snowden, who Rep. Peter King says should be charged with treason and I agree, says that if he was captured he would have a kangaroo trial. What does that mean? It seems to be an expression found only in the U.S. It means that you will be found guilty automatically. Like a kangaroo, they will leap over any evidence that the court doesn’t like.
We just ended this year’s legislative session in Albany, and to be sure it produced real results for every New Yorker concerned about the economy. We passed our third on-time, responsible state budget, which closed multi-billion dollar gaps, and we adhered to our self-imposed two-percent cap for a third consecutive year. This prevented $18.3 billion in new spending, or, to make it more tangible we avoided $3,268 in higher taxes on New Yorkers like you. No new state taxes, no new state fees – none.
Mrs. Parrino said in her letter to the Mineola American last week that my dad instructed the people who defended him to do so. It’s sad that after three years of serving with him, she obviously didn’t get to know him at all. He would never tell people to do that. Also, she said he threatened her in his resignation speech.
She’s referring to when he quoted my great grandmother: “don’t worry lad, in the end it will come around and they’ll get it in the neck.” It was grandma’s way of saying “what goes around comes around.” My dads entire speech can be found on the Mineola American’s website. I suggest you all read it before believing he was threatening Mrs. Parrino. He has already taken responsibility for his words, admitted he made a mistake, and apologized. He is no longer on the board, which is just what she wanted. What else do you want Mrs. Parrino? Enough is enough, already.
I’m proud to represent an area of Long Island that has been the location for many famous movies and TV shows, including Citizen Kane, Annie Hall, and the hit television series Boardwalk Empire. It’s even the setting for The Great Gatsby. Shamefully, it’s also now the location for a show whose characters are disgraceful, misleading, and fuel anti-Semitic stereotypes: Princesses: Long Island.
Full disclosure: I kind of enjoy reality TV. Storage Wars and Pawn Stars are among my guilty pleasures. So the idea of watching a reality show taking place in my own backyard wasn’t so far-fetched. I knew little about the show before sitting down to watch the season premiere.
Editor’s Note: Lou Sanders, who got his journalism degree from NYU, and his wife, Grace, founded the Mineola American in 1952, giving the village its first successful newspaper. Lou and Grace have lived in Mineola for 59 years, and his popular column remains a signature feature of this paper.
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We were disappointed with the resignation of Terry Hale from the school board. He was a much admired and well-liked member. Terry had served as the vice president and then the president of the board with distinction. He had been involved in school matters for almost 20 years. Being a member of the school board means lots of hard work and long hours and no pay. Statements made in e-mails, which he now regrets, led to his resignation. Terry said, “I will be back.” We hope so.
Protesters with crude handmade signs occupied the Jericho Turnpike corners of Willis Avenue and Mineola Boulevard on a recent Saturday. One of their hand-lettered posters made an insulting anatomical reference to a local elected official. I asked the protesters what they were protesting, and they responded that they were protesting the “SAFE Act.” I asked what was wrong with the SAFE act, and they responded “Everything!” claiming that it took away their right to own guns. One apparent leader of the group asked why I was asking these questions, and I responded that I believed they had been given incorrect information, perhaps some of the half-truths and outright misinformation distributed by gun manufacturers through lobbyists such as the National Rifle Association. A younger protester began to yell at me that it “they” were taking away his constitutional right to own guns, but fortunately the more mature fellow calmed him and continued the discussion with me. I asked if they were aware that there was nothing in the SAFE Act that limited the number of guns they could own, as long as they were not convicted felons or adjudicated mentally ill. At that point, the other protesters started raising their voices, unfortunately interrupting the intelligent discussion I was having with their colleague. I wished them a nice day and moved on.
I never expected that looking out for my children would put me at the center of a public storm, and had no desire for media attention, yet here I am. Once again, I find myself having to respond to inaccurate stories.
First, I did not go to the media with the story of what followed the choking incident at Jackson. If I were going to bring that story to the media, I would have done it three months ago. I chose not to in an effort to keep everything positive for the children and the district. However, I was approached by the media after a letter that I had sent was given to reporters by Mrs. Parrino.
The letter is referred to as the “Ramos letter.” Laurain Jones and I wrote it in response to the board’s request for a detailed timeline of events following our request to meet with them.
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