Written by Cory Twibell Friday, 22 February 2013 00:00
The Westbury community is familiar with football star Ronnie Cameron, who attended Holy Trinity High School and is now a member of the Philadelphia Eagles.
What residents may not know is that between practices, meetings and training, Cameron – an imposing physical specimen at 6 feet, 2 inches and nearly 300 pounds – recently founded Bonfire Impact, a social awareness website that highlights the good deeds of professional athletes and other prominent figures in the public spotlight.
According to bonfireimpact.com, the website aims to “deliver news and media that promotes charitable organizations, nonprofits, social awareness, human rights, social issues, education advocacy, health and under-covered stories.”
Cameron, who is currently back home in Westbury until late March when he will report to the Philadelphia Eagles for Organized Team Activities (OTAs), began working on the Bonfire project five months ago during his off-days as a member of the Cleveland Browns.
“I had been doing a lot of volunteer stuff then and I was writing for the Huffington Post at the time and I saw that there weren’t enough stories about people doing the right things in the media,” said Cameron, a defensive tackle.
Cameron recruited a team of writers from various universities and assembled a group of individuals working with a common goal in mind.
“We want to keep putting out good news and positive news to empower people so they have the power to make change. We want people to have a place where they can go to one place to find out about these organizations and find out the good things that are going on out there,” said Cameron.
Beginning his football career on the fields at New Cassel’s Park Avenue School and then joining the Mineola peewee football program before enrolling at Holy Trinity High School and then Hofstra University and Old Dominion University, traveling has never been an issue for Cameron – especially in the past 12 months.
“It’s been a roller coaster ride and a crazy year. From the pre-draft training, interviewing with 11 different teams, going undrafted, then choosing Chicago, competing there, getting cut, getting picked up by Cleveland, getting released and ending up in Philly.
“I had a lot of different experiences over the last year and met a lot of good people that I’m pretty sure a lot of people don’t get to experience in a lifetime. It was a great year looking back,” said Cameron, who earned First Team All American, CAA Defensive Player of the Year and CAA Scholar Athlete of the Year honors as a two-year starter at Old Dominion.
The multi-talented Westbury native, who cited the success of his Monarchs football team in 2011 and earning his MBA in 16 months as two of his greatest achievements, will undoubtedly make his hometown fans proud – regardless of where he ends up next.
Visit www.bonfireimpact.com for more information.
Saturday, 18 May 2013 00:00
For most of the ’80s, ZZ Top was an inescapable presence thanks to a plethora of videos, often times containing underdog storylines revolving around gorgeous gals, a 1933 Ford hotrod and the hirsute threesome serving as a Greek chorus of cool to the aggrieved protagonist. But amidst all the bells and whistles, the most impressive feat pulled off by this Texas power trio was using 1983’s Eliminator to adapt its bluesy hard rock boogie sound and modernize it with synthesizers and drum machines sans any kind of artistic compromising.
Friday, 17 May 2013 00:00
John Romandetti saved six people, but he shies away from the title hero.
“I don’t think of myself as a hero,” Romandetti says. “It’s nothing anyone else wouldn’t have done.”
During Hurricane Sandy, Romandetti risked his own life to go out to Howard Beach and get his girlfriend’s family out of their flooding homes. The Bethpage Air Show recently recognized his bravery, naming him the grand prize winner of the Hurricane Sandy Community Heroes contest. Romandetti, along with nine other winners, will receive VIP tickets to the Bethpage Air Show, plus the reception, and GEICO Skytypers Planeside Meet and Greet. As the grand prize winner, Romandetti also gets the chance to fly with the GEICO Skytypers during next week’s airshow.
Friday, 17 May 2013 00:00
Westbury Okinawan Karate recently celebrated its 10-year anniversary of coming to the Westbury Recreation Center. Since then, the dojo has trained 250 students, ages six and up, in the art of karate with the style of traditional Okinawan ShorinRyu Shidokan.
Founded by sensei John Power, the classes seek to instill the confidence and strength needed to obtain success in everyday life.
“A lot of kids are lacking confidence,” said Power. “We let them practice leadership in the class and this contributes to their confidence.
Friday, 10 May 2013 00:00
Members of the Carle Place Sparc/Interact club recently donated their time and talents at the Alley Pond Environmental Center in Queens. Working together with students from Mineola High School and Holy Cross High School in Queens, the SPARC members planted over 1,000 indigenous trees to help replenish one section of the 600-acre forest park. The group’s efforts were part of the NYC Plant a Million Trees Project in honor of Arbor Day, celebrated on Friday April 26th. The Carle Place planters were: Sarah Megiel, Kelsey Feit, Julia Powell, Sabrina Feit, Monique Slater, Matt Carr, Katie Megiel, Rob Ibos, and Lauren Powell. They are led by faculty advisor Kieran Morris.