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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

Driving rain and cold temperatures could not keep Long Islanders from coming out to support the first annual DogFest Walk ‘n Roll, a fundraiser for Canine Companions for Independence. Held for the first time at Marjorie Post Park in Massapequa, dogs of all breeds and sizes came with their humans with one goal in mind; to raise funds for CCI.

Massapequa resident and event organizer Yvonne Dagger, past president and now board member, discussed the importance of the event.

For as long as she could remember, Christina Amato-Smith has always wanted to open her own hair salon. The Floral Park native worked at a salon down the road from her home, but it wasn’t until 1994 when Amato-Smith made good on her promise to herself.

“I came to Bethpage to open my business because my clients were here,” said Amato-Smith, who now lives in Lindenhurst and has owned Top Cuts for 20 years.

While her business has been met with much success, in 2008, Amato-Smith’s personal life was met with a life altering challenge when she was diagnosed with stage three breast cancer. It was this event that prompted Top Cuts to organize a cut-a-thon to raise funds and awareness for breast cancer. This year’s event occurs on Saturday, Nov. 1.


Calendar

4th Annual Harvest Festival

Saturday, Oct. 25

Health and Wellness Senior Fair

Tuesday, Oct. 28

Haunted Halloween

Wednesday, Oct. 29



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