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Over 60 ... And Getting Younger: February 1, 2013

The Panana

In the fifteen years I have been writing this “world famous” column for the Syosset-Jericho Tribune, I have exposed much about my family and personal life.  Recently, I came onto some facts that are interesting and harmless. Harmless, because all of the parties involved died long ago, and are now buried in our family plot in the Kopyczncer Lodge burial grounds on Staten Island.

My father’s father Eisig (Isaac) was a soldier in World War I for the Polish Army.  I do remember my grandfather telling me some of his war stories, when I visited him and my grandmother Anna (Chancha) in 1945, in Monticello, N.Y.

Like many immigrants, he left his wife and four sons in Poland and came to New York for a better life, without persecution.  He was a roofer and tinsmith and he made good money at his trade in America.  He once told me that while he was building houses in Jamaica, Queens, the boss had no money for the payroll.  The boss offered my grandfather houses instead of cash. My grandfather refused. He needed money to live and gamble.

Who knows what my life would have been like if Isaac had accepted the houses in Jamaica? Perhaps I could have been Donald Trump instead of a dentist.

Anyway, he sent a lot of his money back to Poland for his family. My grandmother Chancha took the money and bought Polish real estate with it. She was considered quite wealthy when Eisig sent for Chancha and his four sons. At first, she even refused to leave Poland and come to America.

Chancha’s sisters, who wanted her to leave Poland and come to the USA, told her they thought her husband could be running around with a “Panana.”  In Polish, that meant he might be running around with a young lady. Chancha dropped everything and came running to Ellis Island, with three of their sons.  One son could not pass the medical inspection because he had glaucoma ( He did come later.)

So that is the story of the Panana! My grandfather Isaac was quite a guy.  This story is similar to a movie called Hester Street. It is a part of my genealogy.

News

Eight students from Jericho High School, the largest number of students from any school on Long Island this year, are among the 300 semifinalists picked from 1,800 entrants nationally and overseas in the annual Intel Science Talent Search.

Brookville’s Green Vale School students were featured in the September/October 2013 issue of Sport Rocketry, the official journal of the National Association of Rocketry.

The seventh-grade students competed nationally at the Team America Rocketry Challenge (TARC) last May in Virginia and were the youngest rocket scientists competing. They were also the only team from Long Island that qualified to enter the competition and one of only two teams from New York State.


Sports

The Syosset Braves 11-year-old football team recently won the Superbowl Championship Game against the Rosedale Jets with a final score of 13 to 0.

The Farrell & Schmidt Ho Ho Ho 5-Kilometer Run started and finished at the John F. Kennedy Middle School in Bethpage on Dec. 21. The top local finisher was Tim Mahony of Syosset, who scored in 11th place overall and third in the 15 to 19 age group.

Other locals winning awards in this year’s Ho Ho Ho Run were Gina Ferraro of Syosset (2nd woman, 35-39 age group), Patty Santella of Syosset (3rd woman, 45-49 age group), Kim Solomine of Syosset (2nd woman, 55-59 age group).


Calendar

Jericho Wheelchair Basketball

January 17

Reality Check on America’s Economy, Health Care & Budget

January 17

Open Forum: Now What Do I Say?

January 21



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