The story of the killing of American journalist Marie Colvin is still being written. As we go to press on Monday, Feb. 27, her family is still trying to have her body released by the Syrian government and brought home. The 56-year old journalist known for her reporting in the most dangerous hot spots over the past 25 years, died on Wednesday, Feb. 22 covering a story for The Sunday Times, a Rupert Murdoch newspaper.
“We may never get her back,” her mother Rosemary Colvin said with sadness on Sunday night. “Today was bad. They had two Red Cross ambulances ready to go in but they were being shot at. They can’t send anyone in because of the violence. Today The Sunday Times called to say it was too dangerous. It’s a very bad day for me.”
Looking to get some fresh air and exercise with some great company while also enjoying an entertaining learning experience? I highly recommend the new walking tour the National Park Service is offering in downtown Oyster Bay. The tours meet at the train station and then meander throughout the town, stopping in front of many historic buildings in downtown Oyster Bay.
We had the extreme pleasure of taking one of these hour-long walks on Sunday, Feb. 19. Our tour was led by Park Ranger Howard Ehrlich, who took a few moments before the tour began to help us become acquainted with the other participants so that we all felt in the company of friends as we began our walk.
Nearly four years to the day since he first arrived on March 1, Isaac D. Kremer announced that he will be leaving the Oyster Bay Main Street Association where he served as executive director to assume a new role with the leading historic preservation organization in Austin, Texas. He will be the preservation program manager for the Heritage Society of Austin.
Mr. Kremer said he saw the posting for the position and went through the interview process. “When I was at the MSA annual meeting on Jan. 26, I thought it might be my swan song. I didn’t have the final notice but I sensed it might be coming. I was just really pleased and happy to have been selected as the candidate.”
His new position is as the Preservation Program Manager for the for Heritage Society of Austin. “Austin is the capital of Texas, and the University of Texas is located there. There is a big neighborhood, South Congress with all the eccentric restaurants and shops – it’s a good change of pace. I’ve been south before. They don’t call it the south or the west. I have to find out what they say,” he added.
The Tzu Chi Academy’s 15th Annual Chinese Lunar New Year Celebration, was held at Oyster Bay High School on Sunday, Jan. 29. The school began in 1998 at the Vernon School.
This is the year of the dragon, one of the 12-year cycle of animals which appear in the Chinese lunar calendar. The Year of the Dragon is considered the luckiest in the Chinese lunar calendar – it is a good time to be born.
Compassion Relief Tzu Chi Foundation Long Island branch, together with Tzu Chi Academy Long Island hosted the event. The program included a Lion Dance, student performances, kung fu, Chinese yo yo, and folk dance presentations. There were festive Lunar New Year children’s games including stilts, paper folding, New Year scrolls (calligraphy), bouncy ping pong, etc. In addition, there were gourmet vegetarian foods available; a Tzu Chi cultural exhibition; Jing Si Café and Books; as well as a charity bazaar.
Two volunteers working on the Ida May Project acted quickly and applied CPR to another volunteer and kept him alive until a police officer arrived on the scene with a defibrillator and shocked his heart back into action. When the man fainted to the floor, John Dupre of Centre Island and Bill Shepard of Huntington went to work giving him CPR to keep him breathing: John doing compressions and Bill giving mouth to mouth resuscitation.
John Dupre, who learned CPR in health class at St. Dominic’s, looked for the pulse and immediately started the critical chest compressions. It was the first time he used the skill. “I was glad Bill Shephard and Herb Shierhorst were there to help. It was nerve-wracking. But then Sgt. Clark showed up with the defibrillator and was there to help me. He showed up pretty quickly,” said John.
Sgt. Michael Clark of the Old Brookville Police Department had heard the call on his police car radio and quickly responded to J Building on West End Avenue to help.
Members of the Coram arm of the US Coast Guard, a unit of the Department of Homeland Security, paid a preliminary visit to the Ida May Project at the Western Waterfront Building J in early January. Coast Guard approval of the design is a requirement for registration and for being able to carry teachers and passengers aboard the vessel. These folks helped answer questions for the Project’s initial submission. Plans, calculations, bills of materials are currently being reviewed by the Coast Guard offices in Washington, D.C.
Due a faster than expected pace of construction combined with a significant lag in obtaining grant monies, Ida May project is on a slowdown in order to extend funding. Funding was always a problem in the original restoration of Oyster Sloop Christeen, and this is no different, although the economy now 10 years later is probably a bit tougher. However, the Project is pleased that master shipwright David Short is staying on to assist, guide and educate until the original pace can be resumed.
Local businesswoman, Kathryn Prinz, has changed her name to “KathRUN” while she trains with the Leukemia & Lymphoma Society’s Team in Training program. The program’s goal is to raise awareness and funding for the Leukemia a& Lymphoma Society in the fight against blood cancers, such as leukemia, lymphoma, and myeloma. KathRUN is training to run the New York City Half Marathon on Sunday, March 18, 2012.
The owner of FootPrinz Reflexology and Massage Therapy in Oyster Bay knows all too well about the disease: she is running to honor her father who is critically ill with Non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma. This will be KathRUN’s third event for Team in Training. She runs to not only celebrate and honor her father’s life, but for others too.
Denise Evans-Sheppard is one of those Oyster Bay people who can say “my great-grandparents lived here.” It is something that happens more often than you might expect in this historic village that many families truly call home. For Denise and her relations – home is on The Hill, where the family homestead is located off Pine Hollow Road and where she still lives with her husband, Kelly Sheppard, and son Kai. “My husband and I were married in Hawaii,” she said. They named Kai, 7, in third grade at Vernon, after one of the wonderful people they met in Hawaii. “It means love in Hawaiian and life in Hebrew. I researched the name,” said Denise.
Research is one of the things she does most naturally. For many years she has been known as the family historian; last year she decided it was time to write the family’s history in the book, The Struggle Within, that she discussed at the Oyster Bay Historical Society meeting on Feb. 7.
The Oyster Bay-East Norwich Chamber of Commerce Business After Hours gathering on Jan. 25, had Serata Italian Restaurant abuzz with conversation as about 40 bussiness people chatted. The chamber’s concept of getting business people from the area together for networking is a great success. Business cards were collected and late in the evening three cards were drawn and those guests received a copy of the book Bare Knuckle People Management by visiting author Sean O’Neill.
President Michelle Browner introduced Walter Imperatore, who is working with Dottie Simons on the Valentine Fair weekend events, Feb. 10, 11 and 12. Raynham Hall history tells us that British Officer Col. Simcoe gave Sally Townsend the first Valentine in America. A replica of it will be shown at Raynham Hall Museum, along with some of their collection of valentines. The chamber is encouraging local businesses to join in the valentine weekend fun with a promotion of their own.
East Norwich Civic Association President Matthew Meng said after their Jan. 26 meeting. “We had a good meeting. We had about 10 people and had a good healthy talk about what we are going to do this year. It included comments on the traffic up and down Route 106 [and the DOT proposal for only one lane southbound in the area of the Vernon school, plus a turning lane.
“East Norwich Fire Department Chief John DeBellis said they will oppose it because it would slow down the response of the volunteers getting to the firehouse so their response/arrival time will be impacted.
“On the other hand, if you are one of the people living on Route 106, anything is better than it is now. In general people don’t want to see a change,” Mr. Meng said.
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