A caring, dedicated father, a supportive, loving husband, a tireless advocate for children with disabilities...we are in awe and admiration when it comes to Larry Greenstein and the depth of his devotion. Thanks to the beautiful letter from his wife, Star Anthony, we also learned that his caring efforts do not stop with his immediate family, but extend to the people, especially the children, of this community as well. Congratulations to Larry Greenstein and his entire family; we are proud to have you in this community. Here's the winning letter that we are sure will convince you, too, that Larry Greenstein is indeed Valentine's Day 2001's Outstanding Significant Other.
Corny as it seems, by 23 I had sworn that the next man I would get involved with would be a good friend first. Sounds hopeless, I know, but Larry Greenstein turned out to be the "boy next door" - literally - when I moved into my first apartment in New York City. He was introduced to me in the hall by another neighbor, and then his phone rang and he raced off to get it. It wasn't a good beginning. But as we got to know each other, I discovered that he was sweet, smart and very funny. We had a lot of common interests and could talk for hours without running out of things to say. He qualified as that "best friend" I had been looking for.
Larry Greenstein and Star Anthony share a family day with their sons, Kevin and Tommy.
And if that were all we had, we would still have had a great and long-lasting relationship. But there's more. He supported me both emotionally and financially before we were married. That would have been enough as well, but there's even more. He supported my decision to go to chiropractic college and paid my way through school. That, too, would have been enough. But he also represents all my moral ideals in a person, working for what he believes in, and has worked volunteering in Port for years. And that would have been enough. But, wait, there's more still.
When we gave birth to our first child we had every patient's nightmare. The doctors in the delivery room said our son was very sick - in fact they warned us that he might not live. Naturally, we were terrified. He did live and eventually came home from the hospital. But that's when the work began. Larry didn't run, or hide, or deny. He got to work. He studied and researched and talked and read, until he became an expert on almost every one of our child's health issues and more. He now knows about cerebral palsy, epilepsy, pervasive developmental disorder, speech and language dysfunction, auditory processing issues, motor planning problems, autism, and much more. (They aren't all our child's problems, but Larry's desire to learn and help doesn't end with our family).
Many times, after we have determined that our child needs something to succeed, those in charge tell us "no." Larry has never taken no for an answer. I had married a shy and non-assertive man who grew into a great advocate. He said it began when an early intervention speech therapy program that Kevin needed, claimed it couldn't schedule time for our son. Over the years his determination has never abated. Through his ceaseless hard work and dedication he has accomplished more for our son than anyone could have ever dreamed.
Many people would have stopped there. But Larry joined the PW Special Ed PTA (SEPTA) - first as treasurer, then as co-president, and has worked to improve every aspect of the way special ed is handled in our school district. Watching from the inside, I can tell you that he has made many valuable contributions to our school district. And he continues to contribute day after day: attending school board meetings, presidents and principals meetings, meetings with the pupil personnel department, parents council meetings, meetings of the curriculum committee, meetings to address the Office of Civil Rights' report, and dozens of other meetings. He talks on the phone and writes emails advocating for the children of Port for much of his day.
Larry is also actively involved with our own kids: playing with them, reading to them, taking them to classes and parties. He even changed diapers (with only a little complaining) when they were young.
All of these things would have made him my very significant other, but he continues to amaze me. During the past year I have had to face my own serious health crisis, and I know I have Larry to lean on. He stands tall, the backbone of strength in the family, guiding us through both troubled and good times.
And the proverbial icing on the cake: Larry is a gourmet chef. Many happy eaters in Port Washington could attest to his abilities.
I could have no better husband. He is a genius. He leads a moral life. He's kind and loving. He is my hero!