Throughout the 1950s, Westbury’s population was booming, skyrocketing from approximately 4,500 residents to nearly 15,000 – and one of those residents was longtime community member Elliot Ferebee, who recently celebrated his 90th birthday among family and friends in December.
Ferebee, born on Dec. 18, 1922 in Switzerland, S.C., moved to Harlem, N.Y. in 1929 and kept active in stickball, baseball, softball and football while attending DeWitt Clinton High School. He recalls seeing Billie Holiday, Sarah Vaughn, Ella Fitzgerald and Cab Calloway at the Apollo and the Savoy before being drafted into the U.S. Army in 1943.
Ferebee’s first marriage to the late Willie Mae Ferebee (their ceremony was conducted by Adam Clayton Powell, the first New Yorker of African-American descent to be elected to U.S. Congress) produced his first daughter, Vallie Bray. His second marriage to the late Elizabeth Ferebee produced three daughters, Denise (deceased), Janice and Annette.
One or more criminals likely landed on the naughty list this Christmas as 10 vehicles in Westbury were burglarized during one of the busiest shopping weekends of the year.
Between Saturday, Dec. 22 at 4 p.m. and Sunday, Dec. 23 at 2:30 a.m., the Nassau County Police Department reported the break-ins, which took place at the Applebee’s parking lot on Corporate Drive, Fulton Street and Drexel Avenues and on Post Avenue.
Detectives said that two vehicles in the Applebee’s parking lot had windows broken and a video game system and computer were reported stolen.
This year, HorseAbility, Long Island’s center for equine facilitated programs, is celebrating its 20th anniversary, helping those with special needs since 1993.
Kathleen Kilcommons McGowan founded HorseAbility in 1993 when she lent her horse to a friend who was also a physical therapist. Her friend used hippotherapy, which helps with motor disabilities by promoting motor-planning abilities, mobilizing the hips and lower spine and stimulating the central nervous system. All of this is done in the presence of a horse.
The Westbury Memorial Public Library will welcome reggae and calypso group Hide Tide on Sunday, Jan. 20 for a free concert featuring a musical tribute to the legendary Bob Marley.
High Tide will take the stage of the library’s meeting room at 2 p.m. and perform some of the legendary reggae star’s classic hits, including “Stir It Up,” “One Love,” “No Woman No Cry”, “I Shot the Sheriff” and “Jamming,” among others.
Last month, nearly 100 Westbury residents and the area’s elected officials met at Westbury Village Hall to express their disapproval for The Bristal Assisted Living Facility’s request to have their Payment In Lieu Of Taxes (PILOT) extended.
At the meeting, elected and appointed members of the Westbury School District, the Westbury Water District, the Westbury Memorial Public Library, the Town of North Hempstead and Nassau County Legislature also joined the mayor and village trustees.
In the aftermath of the unthinkable, local students, teachers and administrators returned to school on Monday, Dec. 17 following the Connecticut school shooting at Sandy Hook Elementary School that took the lives of 20 children and six adults the previous Friday.
David Flatley, superintendent of Carle Place Schools, noted how the situation could’ve been worse had it not been for the response of those who died trying protect their young students.
“There are probably lots of people who were saved up in Connecticut because they planned well, but unfortunately a lot of people were in harm’s way.
When Frances Bruschi was walking toward the bus to head home from BOCES one afternoon, it did not seem to be a particularly interesting day. That all changed in a matter of seconds.
There was a large group of students gathered around in a circle in what seemed like a frantic scene. As she walked closer it became clear that there was a student in need of immediate help; a bee sting had triggered an extreme allergic reaction.
Carle Place’s Paul Mila, a scuba enthusiast and novelist, recently released his fourth book, Near Miss, which features “spies, treasure hunters and Cozumel divers colliding in a Caribbean thriller,” the author said.
Mila, who first tried scuba diving in 1999 during a vacation in Cozumel, Mexico, said inspiration for his latest book derived from an encounter with a fellow diver with a peculiar background.
Westbury Village Mayor Peter Cavallaro ran for his current position in March 2009 during the middle of a fiscal crisis and was replacing a mayor that had been in office for nearly three decades.
Despite these circumstances, Cavallaro has proven to be the right man for the job, as evidenced in the village’s increased bond ratings, lack of tax levy increases and revitalized downtown, which is set to receive a significant boost once the Post Avenue theater opens its doors next year.
“When I was elected, I had big shoes to fill because Ernie [Strada] had been around for 28 years. We set out some priorities that we wanted to pursue, and from my perspective, I think we’ve done a pretty good job trying to accomplish those things,” said Cavallaro, who joked that Strada “got out at the right time” because since Ernie’s departure, the village had to endure two hurricanes and a blizzard in a three-year period.
Ida Zipkis, a former Carle Place resident and current resident of the Bristal Assisted Living Community in Westbury, recently celebrated her 104th birthday with her daughter Roberta and son-in-law Jay Katzeff and fellow residents of the Bristal. Zipkis’ wish as she blew out the candles was “health and happiness for everyone.”
The key to longevity, she said, is simple, “just leave it to God.”
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