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Obituary: Morris Welte

Morris Welte died at his home in Southampton on Feb. 27, surrounded by family. Born on a day of the year now assured a place in the history books, Sept. 11, 1912, Welte enjoyed two careers in his lifetime after traveling the world as a radio operator aboard ships and planes.

The youngest of three boys, Welte emigrated to the United States from Eastern Europe and grew up in New York City. His parents split up when he was just three years old, after which he went to live with foster families. He ended up living at an orphanage starting at age 9 and credits his upbringing there with teaching him right from wrong and how to be responsible.

A scholarship to the YMCA Radio School allowed him to learn ship-to-shore communication and Morse code, which was the start of a 10-year odyssey that brought him to ports around the globe.

During World War II, Welte joined the Air Force and and worked for Pan American Airlines in Florida, which was contracted by the government to help out with the war effort. Welte was the radio operator traveling on bombers being delivered to Allied troops.

After the war, Welte, an avid Yankees fan, worked for a few years as a radio and television repairman in New York City, during which time he had a chance meeting with Babe Ruth and Lou Gehrig.

The year 1953 brought he and his first wife, May, to Southampton, where he began work for the MacKay Radio Receiving Station. He retired from that job, in which he kept track of messages for commercial ships off-shore, after 25 years. His wife died shortly afterward of cancer.

Three years later, he met his second wife, Audrey, at a coffee hour at the First Presbyterian Church of Southampton, of which he was a devoted member. They were happily married for 35 years.

His wife shared his love of travel and they have taken a trip every year since they married in 1978. Their Southampton home is filled with boxes of photographs documenting – all meticulously organized by Welte – their travels.

Never content to be idle, Welte started repairing clocks sometime in 1979, eventually starting his own business, Tick Tock Clock Repair, in his basement. In 1994, he fixed the Village of Roslyn’s tower clock, as a favor to his stepdaughter, Janet Galante, who was the mayor of the village at the time.

He retired just two years ago, working through battles with cancer and macular degeneration, and surviving open heart surgery.

In addition to his wife, Welte is survived by four step-children, Laura Farrara and her husband Raymond of Willsboro and Florida, Janet Galante and her husband Richard of Roslyn, Robert Nelson and his wife Kelli of Florida, and Elizabeth Farrara and her husband Mark of Florida; six step-grandchildren, Kristin, Kaitlin, Holly, Ryan, Eric and Evan. He was predeceased by two brothers, Frank and Sam Welte; and his first wife, Mae Welte.

Memorial donations may be made to East End Hospice, Box 1048, Westhampton Beach, NY 11978 or the First Presbyterian Church of Southampton, 2 South Main Street, Southampton, NY 11968.


News

Howard Kroplick was just settling in to his new position as North Hempstead’s town historian in April of 2012 when a phone call from a resident who found an old headstone led him into a comprehensive study of all 28 cemeteries within

the town’s boundaries.

 

Kroplick, an East Hills resident for 29 years, serves in the unpaid role as an advisor to the North Hempstead board, out of his longtime love of history. His exhaustive study of the area’s cemeteries has helped him complete a history of

North Hempstead that will be published in January, which will coincide with the 400-year anniversary of the discovery of Long Island, by Dutch explorer Adriaen Block. It was Block, according to Kroplick, who first identified Long Island as an actual island, not a peninsula as many believed back then. The 128-page book from Arcadia Publishing is the first ever written about North Hempstead.

For the time being, much of the Roslyn area is without representation on the Town of North Hempstead council. Recently, Thomas K. Dwyer, who has represented Roslyn on that body since 2002, announced that he would step down from the board while he is in negotiations with a Manhattan-based consulting firm.

 

Dwyer, who is the chief operating officer of Syosset-based American Land Services, would not identify the firm he is talking to, but he said that the new job would represent a conflict of interest with his work on the town board.


Sports

SUNY College at Old Westbury recently named Dr. Anthony DeLuca of Levittown as the College’s NCAA Faculty Athletics Representative (FAR), beginning at the start of the 2014-15 academic year.  

DeLuca, now entering his third year at Old Westbury, also holds the position as director Old Westbury’s Honors College.

 

“We are thrilled that Dr. DeLuca will serve as Old Westbury’s Faculty Athletics Representative,” said director of athletics Lenore Walsh.  “He is a champion for intercollegiate athletics and has been involved with our program since his arrival at Old Westbury.  I am looking forward to the opportunity to work closely with Dr. DeLuca in support of our students’ academic and athletic pursuits at Old Westbury.”

Albertson resident and Kellenberg sophomore Gabby Schreib qualified for the Millrose Games in New York City. Schreib qualified as a member of the Sprint Medley Relay along with Danielle Correia, Bridget McNierney, and Jazmine Fray. 

The Kellenberg relay’s close second place finish in January’s Millrose Trials has moved them closer to defending the title they won in the same relay at last year’s Millrose Games. Schreib and her teammates time is currently second in the United States for girls track and field performances.



Calendar

Pete Hamill Lecture - December 5

Chazak Celebration - December 7

More Mussar Programs - January 8


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