Clifton Merchant Magazine - May 2022

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That’s my dad, Joe Hawrylko. Fresh out of Perth Amboy and boot camp at Fort Dix, he was 31 and single. On June 6, 1944 he would be in the muck of WWII on Omaha Beach in France. Compared to my brother and I, both six feet-three, dad was a small guy, somewhere around five-eight. My brother, sister and I did not know much about Joe’s service in WWII. He was a quiet fellow and by time we got to the age when we could be interested about his history, Joe was in his late 50s, bedridden in our home, in the fog of what the doctors told my mom Julie was shell shock. Today the diagnosis would be PTSD or early onset Alzheimer’s. A decade ago, my son Joe, now 37, looked up his name on Google and up pops this footnote about his grandfather in Omaha Beach and Beyond: The Long March of Sergeant Bob Slaughter. “While I had been detached to the Rangers,” Slaughter wrote, “the company transferred a few men deemed unfit for combat and replaced them with more rugged ones. Captain Schilling went on a recruiting expedition into the regimental rifle companies looking for large, rough men to carry the heavy machine guns and mortars—and he found them...” he continued, listing eight names, and then getting to... “Joe Hawrylko, Ben Litwin and Bernie Rooker were just a few of Captain Schilling’s hand-picked men and they proved to be some of the best combat soldiers in D Company.” That mention of my dad makes me so proud and that is why I share this story. Like the Cliftonites we have written about for 27 years, my dad was part of that quiet, hard-working generation who made America the great nation we are today. While Memorial Day is a time to recall those who died in service during war, for many of us, it is also an opportunity to honor unsung heroes like my dad, Joseph John Hawrylko.

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Editor & Publisher Tom Hawrylko, Sr. Art Director Ken Peterson Associate Editor & Social Media Mgr. Ariana Puzzo Business Mgr. Irene Kulyk • May 2022


Here, and over the next 11 pages, you’ll see covers that we’ve published over the last 27 years saluting Clifton Veterans.

Memorial Day Events Sunday, May 29

• 7 pm - Decorate Main Memorial War Monument

Monday, May 30

• 6 am - Avenue of Flags set-up of 2,216 flags • 8:15 am - Fire Dept. Service, Brighton Rd. • 9 am - Memorial Day Parade, Cor. Clifton & Allwood Rd. to Chelsea Park • 9:30 am - Allwood Memorial, Chelsea Park • 11 am - City Memorial Service, Main Memorial Park • Noon - Military Order of Purple Hearts, Clifton Library, Third and Piaget. • 2 pm - Athenia Veterans, Huron Ave. • 6 pm - Avenue of Flags Take Down Questions? Call Keith Oakley at 201-774-6666. He said if weather is nice on Sunday morning, the Avenue of Flags set-up will begin 6 am, May 29.


May 2022 • • May 2022


Starting below and organized by the war in which they served, we have again published the name of every Clifton man who died while in service to our nation. May their memory be eternal.

God Bless America

World War I Louis Ablezer Andrew Blahut Timothy Condon John Crozier Orrie De Groot Olivo De Luca Italo De Mattia August De Rose Jurgen Dykstra Seraphin Fiori Ralph Gallasso Otto Geipel Mayo Giustina Peter Horoschak Emilio Lazzerin Joseph Liechty Jacob Morf, Jr. William Morf Edwin C. Peterson Robert H. Roat Alfred Sifferlen James R. Stone Carmelo Uricchio Angelo Varetoni Michael Vernarec Cornelius Visbeck Ignatius Wusching Bertie Zanetti Otto B. Zanetti


May 2022 • • May 2022


World War II Joseph Sperling Charles Peterson Thomas Donnellan Jerry Toth Frank Lennon Joseph Carboy Julius Weisfeld Edward Ladwik


May 2022 •

Israel Rabkin Peter Pagnillo Harold Weeks William Weeks Salvatore Favata Herman Adams Edward Kostecki Charles Hooyman, Jr. Salvatore Michelli

Richard Novak James Potter Adam Liptak John Van Kirk Carlyle Malmstrom Francis Gormley Charles Stanchak Joseph Ladwik Karl Germelmann Robert Stevens Albert Tau William Scott Benjamin Puzio James Van Ness Gregory Jahn Nicholas Stanchak Frank Smith, Jr Carl Bredahl Donald Yahn Joseph Belli Edwin Kalinka Stanley Swift Charles Lotz Joseph Prebol Walter Nazar Benedict Vital Thaddeus Bukowski Leo Grossman Michael Kashey Stephen Messineo John Janek John Yanick Herbert Gibb William Nalesnik Joseph Sowma Bronislaus Pitak Harry Tamboer John Olear John Koropchak Joseph Nugent Steven Gombocs Thomas Gula Raymond Curley Harry Earnshaw

James Henry John Layton Charles Messineo Joseph Petruska Bogert Terpstra John Kotulick Peter Vroeginday Michael Sobol Donald Sang Andew Sanko George Zeim, Jr. Robert Van Liere Vernon Broseman Harold O’Keefe Edward Palffy Dennis Szabaday Lewis Cosmano Stanley Scott, Jr. Charles Hulyo, Jr. Arnold Hutton Frank Barth John Kanyo Bryce Leighty Joseph Bertneskie Samuel Bychek Louis Netto David Ward Edward Rembisz Lawrence Zanetti Alfred Jones Stephen Blondek John Bulyn Gerhard Kaden William Lawrence Robert Doherty Samuel Guglielmo Robert Parker Joseph Molson Stephen Kucha James De Biase Dominick Gianni Manuel Marcos Nicholas Palko William Slyboom

Herman Teubner Thomas Commiciotto Stephen Surgent Albert Bertneskie Charles Gash Peter Jacklin Peter Shraga,Jr. John Aspesi Micheal Ladyczka

Edward Marchese Robert Stephan Roelof Holster, Jr. Alex Hossack Siber Speer Frank Klimock Salvatore Procopio Harry Breen Gordon Tomea, Jr. • May 2022


World War II Douglas Gleeson Fred Hazekamp Harold Roy Andrew Servas, Jr. Francis Alesso Walter Bobzin Vincent Lazzaro John Op’t Hof Joseph Sondey John Zier Peter Hellrigel Steve Luka Arthur Vanden Bree Harold Baker Hans Fester Patrick Conklin John Thompson Thomas Dutton, Jr. Harold Ferris, Jr.


May 2022 •

Donald Freda Joseph Guerra Edward Hornbeck William Hromniak Stephen Petrilak Wayne Wells Vincent Montalbano James Miles Louis Kloss Andrew Kacmarcik John Hallam Anthony Leanza William Sieper Sylvester Cancellieri George Worschak Frank Urrichio Andrew Marchincak Carl Anderson George Holmes Edward Stadtmauer

Kermit Goss George Huemmer Alexander Yewko Emil Chaplin John Hushler Edgar Coury Robert Hubinger Wilbur Lee Vito Venezia Joseph Russin Ernest Yedlick Charles Cannizzo Michael Barbero Joseph Palagano William Hadrys Joseph Hoffer, Jr. Joseph Piccolo John Robinson Frank Torkos Arthur Mayer • May 2022


World War II Edward Jaskot George Russell Frank Groseibl Richard Van Vliet Benjamin Boyko Harry Carline Paul Domino John Fusiak Louis Ritz William Niader Alfred Aiple Mario Taverna Sebastian De Lotto Matthew Bartnowski John Bogert Joseph Collura Matthew Daniels


May 2022 •

James Doland, Jr. Walter Dolginko Peter Konapaka Alfred Masseroni Charles Merlo Stephen Miskevich John Ptasienski Leo Schmidt Robert Teichman Louis Vuoncino Richard Vecellio Robert Hegmann Ernest Triemer John Peterson Richard Vander Laan, Jr. Stephan Kucha ‘Gigito’ Netto

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Korean War Donald Frost Ernest Haussler William Kuller Joseph Amato Herbert Demarest George Fornelius Edward Luisser Reynold Campbell Louis Le Ster Dennis Dyt Raymond Halendwany John Crawbuck Ernest Hagbery William Gould Edward Flanagan

William Snyder Allen Hiller Arthur Grundman Donald Brannon Our November 2000 magazine celebrated Korean War veterans. Pictured on that cover from left are, John Biegel Jr., Andrew Den Bleyker, Tom Miller, Ken Supko and in front, John Ryan. They are superimposed over a campaign map of Korea.

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Vietnam War Alfred Pino Thomas Dando William Sipos Bohdan Kowal Robert Kruger, Jr. Bruce McFadyen Carrol Wilke

Keith Perrelli William Zalewski Louis Grove Clifford Jones, Jr. George McClelland Richard Corcoran John Bilenski Donald Campbell

US Army/Special Forces Captain Michael Tarlavsky was killed in Najaf, Iraq on Aug. 12, 2004 and buried with honors in Arlington National Cemetery on Aug. 24. Tarlavsky, CHS Class of ‘92, was captain of the Swim Team and enlisted in the Army in 1996. He served in Iraq and Afghanistan and was awarded the Bronze Star. He is survived by his wife Tricia, son Joseph, his parents Yury and Rimma and a sister, Elina. The Veterans Alliance engraved his name on the Downton Clifton Main Avenue War Memorial in 2004— the first name added in 34 years.


May 2022 •

James Strangeway, Jr. Donald Scott Howard Van Vliet Frank Moorman Robert Prete Guyler Tulp Nicholas Cerrato Edward Deitman Richard Cyran Leszek Kulaczkowski William Malcolm Leonard Bird John France Stephen Stefaniak Jr. Nov. 8, 1961 Plane Crash Robert De Vogel Vernon Griggs Robert Marositz Robert Rinaldi Raymond Shamberger Harold Skoglund Willis Van Ess, Jr. Gulf War Michael Tarlavsky • May 2022




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Celebrating N Joanne Hathaway, Ranmi Miyazawa, and Barbara Luzniak

The face of nursing has evolved over the decades, but core values of care and respect remain steadfast. Last month, we spoke with nurses who live or work locally in anticipation of National Nurses Week, which begins May 6, our date of publication. Among those who are featured in the following pages are public health nurses, school nurses, hospital nurses, current students training to become nurses, and nurse practitioners. But while they’re connected by their desire to help others, many are also linked by the long work hours, residual COVID-19 stress, and the ongoing staffing shortages. Keep reading for their hopes for the future of nursing … 20

May 2022 •

A Community Messenger Barbara Luzniak knows exactly when she was first inspired to pursue nursing. The public health nurse was 13-years-old and volunteering as a candy striper at the former Passaic Beth Israel. “I worked alongside nurses because I was considered an extra pair of hands,” said Luzniak, 65. “I accepted everything and wasn’t fearful.” Luzniak, today the Public Health Nurse Supervisor for the Clifton Health Department, said that she also heard stories from her mother, who in her early 20’s worked at a New York Foundling Hospital. By age 16, Luzniak had already spent summers and weekends volunteering and had become a nursing assistant for the remainder of high school. Once in college, she worked on weekends as a nurse technician. “From the age of 13, I already had that ambition to be a nurse,” said Luzniak. “I wasn’t thinking about anything else. I saw things that an average 13-year-old would never see,” she continued. “I’m proud I was able to accomplish what I did.”

g Nurses On the Frontline … A lifelong city resident, Luzniak went all the way through the Clifton Public Schools. She attended School 12, Christopher Columbus, and graduated with the CHS Class of 1974. She went on to Fairleigh Dickinson University, where she earned her Bachelor’s of Science in Nursing in 1978. The next 14 years were spent working in the East Orange Veterans Hospital. “I worked on very different floors,” said Luzniak. “Drug and alcohol detox, psychology, renal dialysis. … They were very difficult floors because all of them

Barbara Luzniak

Stories by Ariana Puzzo were acute care. The men there were having delirium tremens, hallucinations, [and] seizures.” Unsurprisingly, the experience was incredibly hands-on and fast-paced since “people’s lives were in your hands.” It gave Luzniak one of her early supervising experiences working as the charge nurse, or the lead nurse, for alcohol and detox patients. “I had to supervise the whole area … and make sure everything was done. I got my hands dirty in it, too,” said Luzniak. “I was directly involved in patient care … and there were men who • May 2022


had to be in leather restraints to not hurt themselves or others.” Eventually, Luzniak transitioned to other nursing roles. She got into a research program and went on to work with two plastic surgery groups for a combined total of six years. She later joined the Clifton Health Department, where she has worked for nearly 25 years. “After being so involved in all of these fast paced jobs … I needed a change … and there was an opening,” said Luzniak. “I’m proud to say that I’ve been a Cliftonite for all these years,” she added. “That’s why the Health Department is even more special to me.”

Clifton Ave. Remembering all those lost to COVID-19 and promoting the ongoing dedication of nurses, especially hospital nurses, is a top priority for Luzniak. “[Nurses are] the first ones to be already listening to the person and evaluating what their needs are,” said Luzniak. She also emphasized the social responsibility of public health nurses, particularly during crises. “Public health nurses are like messengers for the community,” said Luzniak. “We’re the ones who have a responsibility to meet … all families’ needs and expectations.”

Prevent, Promote, Protect As a public health nurse, Joanne Community Care Hathaway’s main advice is for peoWhat inspires Luzniak about ple to seek their health guidance and working in public health nursing, facts from credible health profesJoanne Hathaway and nursing in general, is the ability sionals. to help other people. But her Clifton “The beautiful thing about the roots also carry great significance for her work. pandemic is that people have become proactive about “I think because I’m a Cliftonite, it’s assisting your their health,” said Hathaway, 65. “The downside is, many own community. Especially under-served communities people who are not professionals were giving guidance, [and] providing access to better healthcare,” said Luzwhich was confusing for a lot of people.” niak. “We work to prevent illness, educate the public, Hathaway, who has worked in public health for the [and] promote good health.” past 14 years, joined the Clifton Health Department in Seeing the progress is also its own reward. The DeJune of 2021. One of the things that she has witnessed partment’s new Satellite Office, at 207 Parker Ave. in is how Health Officer John Biegel “worked hard so we Botany Village, had its grand opening on April 8. Luzwere speaking with one voice.” niak said that they are hoping to offer screenings and ad“We have to go with the facts … [and] guidance ditional healthcare services, as well as collaborate with changes based on emerging scientific facts and guidance community groups and local hospitals. [from] disease experts,” said Hathaway. As far as her biggest career undertaking with the De“The only way forward is to follow the science.” partment, Luzniak noted the distribution of COVID-19 vaccinations. From Jan. 6, 2021 to April 5, 2022, LuzA Trusted Profession niak said that the Department had distributed 17,166 COOriginally from the Bronx, Hathaway’s early ambiVID-19 vaccinations. tions were to get involved and do community work. The “They were all given outside. All through the winter, Rutherford resident was a candy striper and worked with through the rain and snow,” said Luzniak. “The Clifton children with autism during her high school years. school nurses also assisted us, so I have to give them ku“I was looking for that kind of service,” said Hathados, too.” way. “The individual kind of work with people.” On May 7, the community is invited to attend a COHathaway attended Niagara University in New York, VID Remembrance event at 10 am on the Clifton Seearning a Bachelor’s of Science in Nursing. Afterwards, nior Center grounds of the Municipal Complex, at 900 she worked at the George Washington University


May 2022 • • May 2022


Medical Center in D.C., spending a number of years in the neurosurgical unit. At the time, she was 22-years-old and fresh out of college. The position saw her working with patients who had brain tumors and spinal cord tumors or were paralyzed or living with severe illnesses. “Coming out of nursing school was a huge learning curve with the kind of work you need to do,” she said. “You had your clinical, but working in a hospital is another whole ball of wax. I learned a lot from a lot of wonderful mentors.” Another lesson that she learned along the way was how to keep the emotional strain of the job in perspective. It’s a lesson, she said, that came as a revelation and is one she keeps with her. “[I realized that] people would go through these very difficult times whether I was there or not,” said Hathaway. “If … there was anything I could do to make it easier, better, or less painful for them … that was a very special and beautiful gift.” It’s that mentality that perhaps equips her best for the duties of public health nursing. Prior to joining the Clifton Health Department, she worked with Biegel in the


May 2022 •

City of Passaic’s Health Department. She explained how public health is ultimately “the marriage” of all of the nursing aspects she enjoys most. “The idea of promoting public health, wellness, and education for the entire community is at the core function of everything we do in public health,” said Hathaway. Collaboration On All Levels The last few years were tough, but what helped Hathaway navigate the challenges was focusing on empathy and feeling the support of her fellow staff and coworkers. Along with COVID-19 vaccine distribution, the other Health Department duties have remained crucial. Hathaway spends time investigating communicable diseases and getting updates from patients and physicians to prevent further spreads. “John Biegel has really gathered an exceptional staff. The team he has here is just outstanding in every way,” said Hathaway. “It’s a wonderful team to be a part of.” “We’re not all in separate lanes,” she added. “Everyone collaborates in a special way and that really • May 2022


comes from the top.” That collaboration is important in all areas of nursing, especially given how many nurses are burnt out from the coronavirus pandemic. Hathaway acknowledges, in particular, the “bravery and fortitude” of the nurses on the frontline in hospitals and long-term care facilities. “My one big hope is the money that came because of COVID, especially into public health, continues to go into public health,” said Hathaway. “Even if the pandemic does wind down, please God, the needs won’t go away.” “There are always possible pandemics out there, and we need to prevent and promote health even when not [in] a pandemic.”

years at Bergen Arts and Science Charter School in Garfield. The coronavirus pandemic encouraged her to eventually make the switch into public health nursing. In those early months of the pandemic, Miyazawa was volunteering at a FEMA COVID-19 testing site. She also joined the Medical Reserve Corps and became more familiar with the health department. By Fall of 2020, she was studying for her Masters of Public Health in Montclair, and she spent most of 2021 working with the Livingston Health Department before coming to work in Clifton last December. One thing that led her to Clifton was that one of her classes was taught by Clifton Health Officer John Biegel and Health Projects Coordinator Jennifer Kidd. Gratitude and Service “I learned a lot more about ClifAlthough in the early years of her ton, [and] John told me there was career, Ranmi Miyazawa knows the an open position,” said Miyazawa. importance of self-care. The Clifton Ranmi Miyazawa “I initially wasn’t interested; I was Health Department’s public health happy [in] Livingston.” nurse makes sure to practice it in the “As we learned more … I just thought that Clifton has ways that she knows will most benefit her and the coma lot of resources for their residents,” she added. “The munity that she serves. needs were different … and there was more I could do if “I like to exercise and spend time with my family, and I came over to Clifton.” I’ve been trying to go out into nature more to hike,” said One of the major differences was how Miyazawa said Miyazawa, 25. “It’s about being grateful for what we that she administered more COVID-19 vaccinations in have.” the first week in Clifton than during her time working in “Obviously things could be better,” she continued, Livingston. “but it’s important to practice gratitude.” Despite the challenges, the Moonachie resident reMiyazawa’s desire to help others and her interest in gards nursing as “a very rewarding career.” She has also healthcare started at an early age. She said at age 3, she seen that although some people have needed to step back thought of becoming a pediatrician. In high school, the from nursing due to the pandemic, there are plenty of Hackensack native realized that nurses are the ones who people who now want to become nurses as a result. get to interact the most with patients. She also appreciates how there are different paths that Miyazawa studied nursing at Rutgers – New Brunspeople can take within the nursing profession. Miyazawick, graduating in 2018. She knew – despite it possibly wa noted that there are also lessons to be gained from being an “unpopular thought” – that she didn’t want to the pandemic in nursing and, more specifically, public work in a hospital. health. “I knew, personally, it wasn’t for me,” she said. “We learned about the strengths and many weaknesses “School nursing or public health nursing was what inof the system that we have,” said Miyazawa. “If we beterested me.” come aware of the lessons and disparities, I think that we After earning her emergency certification and taking can take it to better levels of public health in the future.” extra school nursing classes, she worked for about two


May 2022 • • May 2022


The Next Wave Graduating in June

Wilson Omar Borgono

Returning to the classroom with a full-time job and family can feel overwhelming, but Wilson Omar Borgono has struck a balance by tapping into his tenacity and passion to help others. Borgono, 40, will earn his Associate in Applied Science in Nursing Degree from Passaic County Community College this June. Enrolling in the two-year accredited program is one of the latest efforts he has made to further his education. Once he completes his degree, he will take the NCLEX exam to become an RN. Since hospitals will hire those who are actively enrolled in a Bachelor of Science in Nursing program, Borgono plans to enroll in Chamberlain University’s College of Nursing while he applies for positions. But he was in an entirely different field before that. Earlier in his career, he worked for about a decade in logistics as a dispatch supervisor for a private company in Port Elizabeth. “Logistics is fast-paced and I work well in that kind of environment, but after my tenth year, I had enough of it,” said Borgono. “I decided I needed to finish my education and do something that I’ll enjoy.” For Borgono, doing what he enjoys meant earning his EMT certificate at PCCC and later an AAS in Paramedic Science at Hudson County Community College. Borgono noted the rigors of his current program at PCCC, as well as the personal satisfaction. “It’s not light work,” said Borgono. “For clinicals, they put you on the floor and let you have interactions with patients.”


May 2022 •

“I would recommend the program to anybody, but you really have to be focused and have to be able to put that work in because if not, they’ll chew you out,” he continued. “I’ve compared with people in other programs and for what we do in Passaic, we have more clinical experience than other programs. It’s harder but 100% worth it.” Becoming An Advocate One of the aspects of the program that inspires Borgono is the backgrounds of the teachers. He noted how his teachers have progressed from working as registered nurses to earning masters and doctorate degrees. “You look at them and you think, ‘Well, we can do it because they have their families … and are still continuing their education,’” said Borgono. “It makes you want to do more.” Borgono, who is originally from Jersey City, moved to Clifton about four years ago with girlfriend Vanessa and their son, Liam, 6. PCCC’s program, he said, appealed to him because it offers nursing students the flexibility of day or evening course options. Borgono does the day program and works full-time for Atlantic Health System in the evenings. That means his work generally looks like classes from 12 to 3 pm on Mondays and Thursdays, Tuesday clinicals from 7 am to 7 pm, work from 7 pm to 7 am from Wednesday to Friday, and then off from Sunday through Monday. Working through the height of the COVID-19 pandemic has prepared him for the demanding hours. “I 1000% felt the [staffing] shortages. In the beginning 2020, we were all understaffed,” said Borgono. “A full

day is a 12-hour shift, and I was doing that five to six days a week. We also didn’t have proper [personal protective equipment] and had to [reuse] our N95s,” he continued. “It was physically taxing and mentally exhausting.” But Borgono has seen the improvements and now feels greater support from the healthcare system. Through his schooling and experiences, he feels even more ready to connect with patients and their loved ones, as well as act as “their advocate and representative.” “PCCC taught me how to communicate with people rather than just getting the facts,” he said. “How to really

Wilson Omar Borgono and Vanessa with their son Liam.

learn about your patients, talk to them and their families, and see what services are needed.” Paying It Forward As part of the next wave of nurses, Borgono hopes to see more patient-based healthcare. “Like a restaurant, it’s become about how quickly we can turn over the tables or beds,” he said. “I would like to see healthcare be more patient-focused rather than: ‘Your insurance only covers so much.’” He added that part of that includes reaching out to the community and finding ways to spend some more time speaking with patients or their families in the hospital. Borgono hopes to one day work in St. Joseph’s ER for a few years before specializing in an area like pediatrics. “I’d like to get out in my community more and get involved in making sure people understand their medication,” he said. “More so with pediatrics … because they really don’t have a voice until their parents know.” Borgono also hopes to spread that knowledge in other ways. After seeing the passion of his peers in the classroom, he plans to eventually teach other future nurses in the community college setting. “I want to get people who are curious and teach them because I went through it. For me, that’s my endgame,” said Borgono. “Once I can’t keep working long hours, that’s what I’ll do.” • May 2022


Mary Ann Madamba

Strong Support System Limitless learning and taking care of lives keeps Mary Ann Madamba committed to patient care at St. Joseph’s Health. The Critical Care Nurse has worked at St. Joseph’s for 18 years. Prior to that, Madamba lived in the Philippines, where she studied to become a nurse. But her inspiration to help others through healthcare connects back to her mother and many family members working as nurses. Her mother’s advice has also remained with her through the years. “She told me that I have to have an open heart full of compassion … to become a nurse,” said Madamba, 47. “That made me who I am today.” Madamba has worked as a nurse for the past 27 years, but her journey to St. Joseph’s began when the recruitment team visited the Philippines. She said the challenges were different from what she was accustomed to while working in the Philippines, but they inspired her to learn. “I had a good mentor, Debbie Smith, who was my manager,” said Madamba. “She taught me how to be outspoken and how to [work] with patients, families, and doctors.” It was a combination of strong support from people like Smith and Madamba’s co-workers that has kept Madamba working in the environment that became like a home. “It’s a family. Everybody is very helpful here,” said Madamba. “They used to guide me and as I’ve grown


May 2022 •

[in] age and my learning abilities, I now pass it onto the younger generations.” Learning Each Day Despite the job’s inevitable demands, Madamba feels the rewards. The challenges fluctuate on a daily basis and rapidly changing patient statuses can “keep you on your toes.” But these elements have allowed her to hone her skills and make sure that she makes the right decisions for patients’ needs. “I think that’s what made me stay in the ICU,” said Madamba. “You’re taking care of lives, not working with just books or papers.” “I’m still learning every day,” she continued. “That’s what I like about nursing.” But the past two years were entirely unique. Madamba, who has lived in Clifton since December of 2021, kept herself grounded during the coronavirus pandemic by thinking about the patients. Sometimes it meant being with patients during the tough moments when their family couldn’t be with them. As far as taking care of herself, Madamba said that she loves to cook. She also enjoys entertaining her family and friends at her house. “All of my friends are nurses and most of them work at St. Joseph’s,” said Madamba. “Having the support of my family and friends [helped] me [to] not break down … and made me stronger for my patients.”

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High Demand, High Reward Caring for others starts with caring for yourself, and Bozena Dziadon is dedicated to ensuring her patients receive the best possible treatment. When Dziadon is not working at St. Joseph’s Health, she spends time with loved ones and enjoys gardening when the weather is nice. “Hiking relaxes me the most,” said Dziadon, 53. “I also try to eat healthy.” “I work nights, but when I’m [home] … I try to take care of my primary needs,” she continued. “We have to take care of ourselves first. Then we can help others.” Dziadon, who emigrated from Poland in her early 20’s, has lived in Clifton since 2003. She attended nursing school through a joint program offered by the University of Medicine and Dentistry of New Jersey and Ramapo College. But her interest in the medical field took its earliest form when she was a child. “I like to help people,” said Dziadon. “I never thought about a different profession than in something [related to medicine].” Bozena Dziadon Today, Dziadon has worked as a Critical Care Nurse in St. Joseph’s for 20 years. The worst chalShe also offered words of encouragement for young lenge of her entire career was treating patients with COnurses who are starting out in the field. VID-19. “It’s always a hard job, but it’ll get easier hopefully “That was the hardest [and it is] still hard to even think when you learn the skills and have more experience,” about it,” said Dziadon. “Seeing people who couldn’t said Dziadon. “Be tough. Survive. It’s very rewarding.” breathe, all of the isolation, how hard we worked to try and save them … [without] the supplies was very hard.” Caring For Future Generations “Hopefully we never have to go through that again,” As a nurse for 28 years, Annabelle Telebrico has found she said. “ICU is always hard – we see people … fightthat the caring profession has made her a better version ing for their lives – but … just thinking about COVID is of herself. traumatizing.” Her personal growth is seen partly in her sensitivity Still, Dziadon has found that the experience made her toward other people’s feelings and needs. She has also stronger. Despite the lingering concerns and anxieties, seen it in her own acknowledgement that the world is what continues to help is discussing these problems with much bigger than herself. co-workers and taking advice from each other. “My words and actions can affect someone else’s life,” That support extends to the traveling nurses who rosaid Telebrico, 50. “I want to be the person who touches a tate in and out of St. Joseph’s. Despite the changing faces, person’s life in a healthy and positive way.” Dziadon said that the staff nurses “appreciate any help.” “I want to bring a smile to someone’s face,” she con“We appreciate that extra hand because right now, tinued. “I want my patient’s parents to leave their little there are not enough assistant personnel,” she said. “Esones to me, knowing that there is someone they can pecially in the ICU, it helps. Every nurse and every hand trust.” is a help.” Telebrico has worked at St. Joseph’s Health


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for 20 years. When she first came to St. Joseph’s, she worked for a year and a half on the adult surgery floor. Afterwards, she transferred to her current position in the NICU. “I consider St. Joseph’s as my second home,” said Telebrico. “Over the years, some coworkers who became friends became my ‘chosen family.’” “Aside from the comfort of proximity to where I live,” added Telebrico, “I decided to stay at St. Joseph’s because I love what I do, I love being a NICU nurse, and I love working with the less privileged population.”

cally ill neonatal patients. “The job can be stressful and overwhelming at times because of the acuity of cases. However, this cannot be a reason to underperform,” said Telebrico. “NICU nurses are trained to work under extreme pressure, too.” “We do not only take care of critically ill babies,” she continued. “We also deal with their parents’ emotional and mental turmoil, which is a great challenge to us.” A Matter of Endurance As is the case with most emotionally and physically demanding jobs, the reward is significant. Telebrico has come to love working as a NICU nurse and finds great satisfaction watching as “these tiny human beings develop into a full grown baby.” Seeing these babies develop from needing a ventilator to breathe, to finishing a bottle of milk is part of that

Trained For Pressure Telebrico’s early exposure to nursing shows in a simple way how the times have evolved. As a child in the Philippines, she said that she saw some relatives who were in nursing. “For a very simple and innocent Annabelle Telebrico reason, I admired them for wearing a white nurse’s hat and uniform, [along with] white socks and shoes, not knowing in detail what experience. the job of a nurse actually was,” she said. “All I really “Whenever parents verbalize their gratitude for taking knew is that they take care of sick people in the hospital.” care of their preemies,” she said, “the more I am inspired In her own line of work, Telebrico sets aside her street to perform my job better and to love and care deeply for clothes when she arrives at work, but she substitutes their little ones in their absence, making sure that their them for a scrub suit, gloves, and a mask. preemie’s needs are attended to.” “I start the day by … scrubbing to make sure that my Telebrico is also humbled when her efforts are achands and arms are clean,” she said. “In the NICU, we knowledged in a professional capacity. In the previous take infection control seriously.” years, she said that she became one of the first recipients Telebrico graduated in 1992 with a Bachelor of Sciof the “Recognize A Nurse” award and the Nursing Exence in Nursing in Centro Escolar University, Philipcellence award. pines. She passed the Philippine Nursing Board Exam in What she hopes more people consider is that nursing 1993 and then took and passed the exam required to have is not merely a job, and it’s not a job that is meant for eva work visa in the United States. eryone. As hospitals across the United States continue to In 1994, she received two almost-simultaneous job ofgrapple with staffing shortages, there are some methods fers. She decided to work in Philippine Children’s Medithat she thinks can address these shortages. They include cal Center. Some of the general and subspecialty services fair compensation, retention bonuses, awards and recogincluded pediatrics, hematology, infectious disease, and nition, and a safe nurse-to-patient ratio. neonatology. After eight years, Telebrico left her work as But some challenges simply remain the nature of the a Nurse III and migrated to the United States. work. The nature of her work in St. Joseph’s NICU varies “A nurse must be willing to endure the highs and lows daily with each patient. Along with her nursing license, of everyday challenges of work,” said Telebrico. “Aside Telebrico also holds a NICU certification. The certificafrom critical thinking, you have to be strong and compastion enables her to provide care to acutely ill and critisionate, too. Life depends on you.”


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Clifton Public Schools Substitute Teaching Opportunities Competitive Pay! January 1, 2022 - June 30, 2022

$240/Day: County Substitute Certification $250/Day: NJDOE Teaching Certification Pursuant to P.L.2021, c. 87, individuals that are enrolled in an accredited institution of higher education , have completed 30 semester-hour credits, and are at least 20 years of age are now eligible for a substitute teacher credential. Apply today at The district will contact eligible applicants and assist with certification process if needed. Clifton Public Schools 745 Clifton Avenue Clifton, NJ 07013 Phone: 973-594-4195 E-mail: • May 2022


Matthew Brooks

One of the aspects of the nursing field that Matthew Brooks appreciates most is its versatility. Over the past decade, he has worked in multiple nursing capacities, including as a hospice nurse and as a hospital staff nurse. “It’s such a vast field and there are so many different opportunities to help people, and other opportunities to expand upon skill sets that you wouldn’t think of,” said Brooks, 31. Originally from Hillside, Brooks lives in Clifton and works as a case manager in Mountainside Medical Center at Hackensack Meridian Health. The position is one that he has worked in for about eight months, making it a “mid-pandemic transition.” But he didn’t always plan on getting into nursing. “Originally, I was a graphic design major, but I didn’t feel like I was learning anything to truly impact people the way that I planned to,” said Brooks. What Brooks did remember was his father discussing his job as an EMT at University Hospital in Newark, where he worked for about 30 years. “Seeing him come home and telling me different stories and how he impacted lives through these stories was always in the back of my mind,” said Brooks. Being Honest With Yourself Brooks graduated from Union County College’s School of Nursing in May of 2012. One of the biggest changes that he’s witnessed is the demand for nurses


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today. At the time, he said that his first job came in September. It was working in a nursing home since he said that they were quicker to accept new graduates. He later worked for about six months in child psych at Trinitas Regional Medical Center in Elizabeth and then started working at Newark’s University Hospital for about seven years. “I really enjoyed it,” said Brooks. “The majority of my time was spent in the observation unit, which is an extension of the ER. Then COVID happened, and I was bouncing around the departments.” By November of 2020, Brooks realized that something had to give. He felt the weight – like so many others in medical fields – of losing 11 of his co-workers to COVID-19. Eventually, Brooks found that it was difficult working like he had before after having lost so much, so fast. “I took time off for myself … and it gave me time to think, ‘What could I be doing now?’” he said. “I didn’t feel ready to jump back into doing that, but I felt the need to help people.” During his reevaluation, one of the things that struck Brooks was the use of the term “heroes.” It was a term that became commonplace when referring to healthcare workers in the early months of the pandemic. “‘Hero’ is a term that makes you think of Superman, or someone indestructible with powers,” said Brooks. “One of things about that is, people expected us to be made of iron and to keep going, and some of • May 2022


us couldn’t. I had to be honest with myself and step away to be able to care for people.” Now, by focusing on his own mental health, Brooks continues to see a therapist who has helped him develop coping skills to work through the ongoing pandemic trauma. “This is still something that is actively going on. It’s not over,” said Brooks. “We still get COVID patients at my hospital and my co-workers here still get sick.” Brooks went on to say that one of the key features of the pandemic is mistrust and that, as a whole, hospital administrators can support nurses more. When asked about shortages, he offered his own perspective. “People frequently say that there’s a nursing shortage. There isn’t,” he said. “There’s a shortage of people willing to pay staff members what they deserve.” Unpacking Biases When speaking with Brooks, another element of his nursing career deserving of exploration was his identity as a man working in a traditionally woman-dominated field. He said one of the most common questions that he’ll get asked – that he has rarely heard women get asked – is why he isn’t going back to school to become a doctor. There is also sometimes a reluctance, in his early job searching experiences, to hire men in certain departments. The other noticeable difference is what some people expect male nurses can handle.


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“One thing that’s maybe not talked about is when … there are patients who are more violent, they usually assign them to the men,” said Brooks. “On the one hand, I get it, but also, am I bulletproof?” But some of the misconceptions are also from outside of the professional environment. Brooks said that one of the things that can distort people’s perceptions of nurses is watching television programs that feature them. “If you watch TV … you might see nurses as the background characters, but we’re not maids,” he said. “We’re medical professionals with a science background.” “I’ve also found that as a male nurse of color, people will ask questions like, ‘Are you sure this is safe to take all at once?’” he continued. “And question my knowledge, unsure if I am qualified to do what I do.” Despite these systemic obstacles, Brooks has seen the benefits of his work that extend beyond the hospital walls. One of the big things is breaking down his own personal biases that he said everyone possesses in some form. He added that his varied community roles and exposure to different backgrounds has made him “more culturally competent.” “I’ve been exposed to so many different people, and it’s something that has helped me in my own personal growth,” said Brooks. “Not just when I talk to new patients, but also when I meet new friends.”







Offer valid on all membership with annual contract only. Annual fee and applicable taxes apply. Pricing and amenities may vary by membership and location. Additional fees and restrictions may apply. Offers ends 5/31. See club for details. © 2022 Crunch IP Holdings, LLC • May 2022


School 15 Nurse

Dianne Zecchino

For Dianne Zecchino, it’s all about the kids. The School 15 nurse recalled those early months of the coronavirus pandemic and how it shut down in-person learning, thus altering the job that she loves. “I missed [the kids] so much when we were remote. Sometimes I’d pop on some of the virtual meetings that teachers did and I would get emotional just looking at their faces,” said Zecchino, 57. “They give you energy and make you get through the day.” But Zecchino didn’t always work in a school setting. The lifelong Clifton resident earned a diploma at the since-closed Clara Maass School of Nursing in Belleville. She then took her nursing Boards to become a Registered Nurse and got her bachelor’s degree from Kean College, now Kean University. While in school, Zecchino worked at Clara Maass Medical Center for about 18 years. She also worked there as she studied for her School Nurse Certification at Caldwell College. A constant for Zecchino is that she loves helping children and worked during those years in pediatrics. “I was a young grad – I graduated nursing school and began working in a hospital at 19,” she said. “Some of the patients were older than me because pediatrics goes until 21, and they will sometimes take adult overflow.” “It was a [really] great learning experience,” continued Zecchino. “I had infants and newborns, up to older people. Then you had anything from orthopedics to viruses. It was really diverse.”


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Working in that environment, she said, truly prepared her for the challenges of school nursing. Zecchino’s school nursing career began in the private sector at the former Saint John Kanty, located in the Athenia section. In 2005, she started in Clifton Public Schools at the School 12 Annex and then went to School 15 in 2010. One way her previous work prepared her was by allowing her to develop a strong trust in her own judgment. She said that trust is crucial when working as the only nurse in a building and needing to assess children and know what to do. She has witnessed significant changes through the years. More recently, she has seen the way school nurses have grown due to COVID-19. Before the pandemic, she said her contact with a parent was minimal. Now, she emails parents to explain why a child is sick. “I’ve adapted and changed with it and, for me, it’s a good thing because I’m learning skills that I didn’t know three years ago,” said Zecchino. She would also make phone calls to families’ homes during the lockdown and speak to families who had positive cases or had experienced a loss. She said that those moments helped her to keep in touch with the community. “My job is the kids,” said Zecchino. “If the kids aren’t in the building, what am I doing? The rest is the paperwork.” Being around the students daily, or even when working virtually during the pandemic, she said: “It saved us mentally.” • May 2022


School 12 Nurse

Wendy Scrudato

As the nursing profession continues to evolve, Wendy Scrudato hopes that she sees certain perspectives evolve with it. That includes more people recognizing school nurses for “all the work we do.” “I give [hospital nurses] so much credit for being there during COVID because they really were on the frontline,” said Scrudato, 56. “But I [do] think that hospital nursing has always had some more respect than school nursing, [and] I hope this shows how important nurses are all over.” “Whatever field or avenue nurses go into, they’re important no matter where they are.” Scrudato is a lifelong resident who attended School 2, Woodrow Wilson, and graduated from CHS in 1983. Scrudato knew from an early age that she wanted to pursue nursing. Part of it was seeing how her mother, Frances DeVos, worked in the Clifton Health Department as a nurse before she retired. Scrudato earned her bachelor’s at Rutgers School of Nursing in Newark. When she started out, she worked at the old Passaic General in med-surg and oncology. But she said that the hospital hours were much harder from those of school nursing. Once she had her first child, she got her certification and started nursing at Saint Philip’s in Clifton. By January of 2000, Scrudato joined Clifton Public Schools at School 12. “In school nursing, one of the challenges is autonomy,” said Scrudato. “You’re by yourself in the school.


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In a hospital, you have a whole team of nurses that you’re working with and people who are around you in an emergency situation.” Given School 12’s size as Clifton’s biggest elementary school, the needs of the children can keep Scrudato busy. But the reward comes from the longevity and ability to get to know the children and their families. “At this point now, I call them my grandkids. The kids that I had, I’m getting their kids now,” she said. “I love it. They remember me, and I remember them.” Scrudato added an important part of school nursing is educating students and families about health issues, preventative care, and providing them with resources. Prior to the coronavirus pandemic, she organized coat drives and would receive coats from other schools to give to School 12 families in need. “School nursing is nursing, but it is also educating and a lot of community service,” she said. • May 2022


Melissa McKay

Building connections with patients is a source of pride for Melissa McKay. It’s part of her role as nurse practitioner that she takes seriously, especially since the profession itself only began emerging more in the 1980s. McKay (CHS 2006) emphasized that while medical decision-making gets easier through more experience, there is an ongoing emotional intelligence component. “I’m now in a place where I can work with patients to jointly make a decision that [will] give the patient the best outcome, but also make them feel like they were part of the … process,” said McKay, 33. “Learning how to handle people is [harder than] learning medicine.” But McKay has gathered diverse experiences to help support her in these efforts. After going through the Clifton Public Schools, she went to Bergen Community College in Paramus and earned her associate’s degree in nursing. She earned her bachelor’s from Bloomfield College and became a certified Adult-Gerontology Nurse Practitioner after completing her master’s degree at Fairleigh Dickinson University. The part that she found highly beneficial was exploring her options and working in different settings while completing all stages of her education. Some of those places included working at Saint Barnabas, a couple of surgery centers, and Overlook Medical Center. “I kind of always had my toes dipped in a bunch of pools,” said McKay. “I was always interested in trying new things as a nurse while working on my education.” McKay felt the transition when she went from working as an RN for over 10 years to working in a private practice in 2018.


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“I learned from the dinosaurs working at Clara Maass in Belleville, which was awesome and helped me with every other prospect thereafter,” she said. “But it was a learning curve. The acuity and intensity are very different when you go from a hospital to an out-patient, 9-to-5.” The role also changed – now she was no longer following set doctor’s orders but working as the provider who manages the patient’s health. It meant that she was ordering the prescriptions and tests, and managing chronic diseases, with autonomy. “I’m personally pretty adaptable,” said McKay, “but the shocker was now: ‘I’m in charge. I’m not just following orders.’” Today, McKay works through Summit Health in Livingston and has found that some patients who were initially skeptical of her title “kind of fall in love with the nurse practitioner.” “At my first nurse practitioner job … something that I noticed there were a lot of older patients … [would] get upset when [the doctor] wasn’t there and they’d have to see me,” said McKay. “Then they started to request to see me … and followed me when I moved onto Summit Medical. When older people say, ‘I don’t want a doctor, I want a nurse practitioner’ that’s huge.” The understanding of the job is one of things that she would like to see become more commonplace. “Some people may come into an appointment with a certain preconceived notion of what it is I do and think that I’m ‘just a nurse,’” she said. “Firstly, that sounds a little insulting – nurses are great. But it would be great to see more education done by the public about what our role is and how we fit into the healthcare system.” • May 2022


Mary Ellen Yaremko has found that working in the same environment for decades has many benefits. One of the most simple benefits is a sense of connection and community. “It’s home,” said Yaremko, 66. “We’re all human.” Yaremko has spent her 46-year nursing career working in St. Mary’s General Hospital in Passaic. Working as an Emergency Room Nurse means that the nature of her work will constantly change on a daily basis. But she has also seen changes over the decades. “The clientele and the type of wounds and types of patients we get change every day,” she said. “We’ll see gunshot wounds. It’s not the small, little community hospital that I had started in years ago. It’s challenging.” Standing: Andrea McNamara (Craig’s wife), son Paul Yaremko (41), A lifelong resident of Clifton, Yaremko attendBo Yaremko. Seated: Mary Ellen Yaremko, granddaughter Nora (8, ed St. Philip’s through eighth grade and graduated Craig’s), Ashley Ference (Paul’s fiancée) with their son Cody (2 1/2), from Paul VI High School. One of the things that Craig Yaremko (43). Front row: Olivia (Ashley’s daughter), granddrew her to nursing was helping in the pediatric son Bo (5, Craig’s). Paul is holding Patrick, Craig’s pup. unit at St. Joseph’s when she was about age 14. What Yaremko found working in an ER is that there’s There, the nurses took her under their wings. no other place besides the ICU to go next. “It takes a difShe said another contributing factor was how she ferent kind of personality to work in an ER,” she said. worked at St. Mary’s as part of a Distributive EducaBut dealing with the coronavirus pandemic and its tion program during high school. The program allowed devastation was something else. Yaremko said candidly Yaremko to attend high school for half a day and then that there were points when she wanted to walk out of assist as a nurse’s aid from 3 to 6 pm. the hospital. After high school, Yaremko attended Felician ColIt was early during the pandemic that Yaremko conlege, now Felician University, for a three-year program tracted COVID-19. The disease kept her out of work for and continued working her way up at St. Mary’s. She five weeks. worked as a nurse technician, a graduate nurse, and then “COVID was nasty; I almost died,” said Yaremko. eventually became a registered nurse. “I worked on the “Even in the middle of the pandemic, there was still not medical floor until they shoved me in the emergency enough PPE to go around. So many people died. Death room, which I hated in the beginning but then came to was a big issue for all of us, mentally and emotionally.” love,” said Yaremko.


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Yaremko remains a COVID “long-hauler”, which has manifested in the form of a lingering cough. When asked why she returned, despite the trauma, her answer was straightforward. “I’m strong, and this is just what nurses do,” said Yaremko. “We don’t think about ourselves or put ourselves first. We do what we have Mary Ellen in 1976. to do and know that our coworkers need [us].” What has helped her deal with what she describes as “the worst thing I’ve ever been through in my life” are a few things. One aspect from work is a young group of traveling nurses, who she said are “cohesive with St. Mary’s staff.” What helps her on a personal level are her loved ones. “My family, my husband, Bo, and my dog [have kept me grounded],” said Yaremko. “It’s about the comfort stuff. Without that, you could really have a mental challenge going on with yourself.” • May 2022


Master of Nursing Ramapo College

Eugene Osmak

Nursing constantly evolves in Eugene Osmak’s experience, but his desire to stay in healthcare remains steadfast. The unpredictability and ability to help others excite him and are what drew him to working as an Emergency Department Registered Nurse. “Where I see myself in five years might not be where I end up, but that’s the exciting part of life, right?” said Osmak, 37. “The pandemic hasn’t deterred me from my plans.” “As far as being an emergency nurse, it’s a thrilling job and the most fulfilling work,” he added. “I love meeting new people, and not just staff. … Patient care is super rewarding, and I try to treat all of my patients like family or how I would want my family treated in the hospital.” Osmak’s nursing journey was not without some turns along the way. After graduating from CHS with the Class of 2003, Osmak pursued a degree in Justice Studies and Pre-Law at Montclair State University. After earning his degree, he described himself as “treading water for a little while” as he worked on “finding myself.” He ultimately decided to apply for a grant at Passaic County Community College. He attended the Public Safety Academy and became an Emergency Medical Technician in 2013. Later, he realized that he wanted to do ER nursing and applied to their nursing program. “The rest is history,” said Osmak. “Doing this sort of work is super fulfilling and I continue leaving work feeling like I made a difference.” “It definitely is an adrenaline rush and, in some cases, we’re saving lives,” he continued. “I can’t think of anything better.”


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Lifelong Mentorship One thing that Osmak said has changed since the pandemic began is his stamina. He’s hardly alone in that regard, but it hasn’t dissuaded him. Over the course of his nursing career, he has worked in five different emergency departments in Northern New Jersey. He specifically works as a traveling nurse, which he has always done on the side of his full-time work. One thing that he noted is the importance of staff nursing experience. As a traveling nurse, you don’t have a long orientation period. But he acknowledged the other benefits. “It has given me valuable experience working in different emergency departments,” he said. “I have this wealth of knowledge as far as what works, doesn’t work, and what works better.” He can also use that knowledge in his upcoming work endeavors. Osmak is currently getting his Master of Science in Nursing at Ramapo College to become a Family Nurse Practitioner. He’s also transitioning into a more administrative role as a Director of Patient Care in an emergency department. Osmak gives a great deal of credit to the nurses who trained and inspired him throughout his nursing career thus far. “I don’t think that you ever stop learning or having a mentor, or goals for where you want to see yourself,” said

Osmak. “The people that I’ve met along the way – I’ve taken bits and pieces of them with me.” A Lesson in Resilience On the hard days, Osmak said that the biggest lesson that he’s taken from work and applies to his life is picking yourself up and continuing to move forward. “I think it’s a [measure] of who you are,” he said. “I have definitely been able to perfect that in a way. The best lesson that emergency nursing has taught me is resiliency.” Witnessing that resiliency firsthand in both his colleagues and patients has further inspired and helped him in reaching that goal. Osmak, who has been married for almost nine years, added that he stays grounded in his personal life by going down the shore with his partner and setting aside time to spend with their dogs. “After doing this for a certain amount of time, it’s your day-to-day work and it affects you in different ways,” said Osmak. “We’re definitely not indestructible people and are still going through it like everybody else.” • May 2022


The Trailblazers Public Health Nurses

Knowing that you’re needed is a good feeling, and Jane Scarfo experienced that firsthand when Clifton contacted her in 2020. Still, the retired nurse couldn’t have expected the circumstances that saw her returning to work at the height of the COVID-19 pandemic. In March of 2020, her efforts were focused on doing case interviews. By January of 2021, she was part of the vaccination clinics at CHS and Scarfo recalled how the nurses serviced hundreds of people per clinic. “Thank God, we had the school nurses,” said Scarfo, 67. “[Fran DeVos], [Barbara Luzniak], and I were drawing up all the vaccines and then bringing it out to them to make it easier.” While Luzniak is currently the Public Health Nurse Supervisor for the Clifton Health Department, Scarfo retired in her 35th year from the City of Clifton in 2014. She noted that while she returned to work in a paid capacity, individuals like Fran DeVos stepped up to help as volunteers. “Fran is a 1959 Passaic General Nurse graduate,” said Scarfo. “She was a great help to us – helping me to draw and open the syringes.” The Way It Was Before working in Clifton, Scarfo graduated from Bloomfield College in 1977 and worked in Saint Michael’s Medical Center in Newark for almost three years. She became a nurse for Clifton in 1980 and acknowl-


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Standing from top left, Jane Scarfo, who retired in 2014, Tinna Zanni, who retired in 2005, Fran DeVos, who retired in 2001 and Dorothy DeLiberto, who retired in 1996.

edged the many changes she has seen over the decades. One major change was that when Scarfo started, she was one of about 12 nurses. “Then through attrition or retirement, the number dwindled down to about two nurses,” she said. “We covered the parochial schools in the beginning … and now we’re down to only St. Philip’s.” Scarfo noted the ways nursing has also changed since DeVos, 82, started her career. DeVos, who worked for the city from 1969 to 2001, worked prior at the former Beth Israel in Passaic. Certain changes include the departure of graduating with the traditional nursing cap and white uniform. But the nursing attire is just the surface level. “I think that the evolution and education parts of nursing have changed the most,” said Scarfo. “There were many diploma schools in the 50’s and 60’s. They’re not around anymore. Nurses now should have a minimum of a bachelor’s degree, and many are going for master’s degrees. It’s an education ball-game.” Once A Nurse, Always A Nurse The clinics are smaller now and take place in City Hall, but Scarfo remembers that first Wednesday clinic at CHS on Jan. 6, 2021. • May 2022


In 2007, Jane Scarfo with her dad Joseph Gyorgydeak, her husband George and their daughter Lauren at the Avenue of Flags. At right, that’s Lauren 13 years later when she became our cover model for the August 2020 edition.

“I was excited and a little nervous. It was the first clinic we did, so we had to draw up all of those vaccines,” said Scarfo. “Moderna was pretty cut and dry … but for Pfizer, you needed to put the right amount in the syringe.” “I was nervous about making sure everything was done correctly,” she continued. “But it was good to get back in. After the first hour, it felt like I had never left nursing. Like riding a bike.” Scarfo is a lifelong resident, attending School 14, Woodrow Wilson, and CHS with the Class of 1972. Her daughter, Lauren (CHS 2012), was featured on our August 2020 cover as the “Voice of Clifton.” DeVos, now living in Woodland Park, has four daughters who went through Clifton schools, including current School 12


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nurse Wendy Scrudato. When Scarfo considers the future of nursing, she would like to see efforts made to encourage young people to pursue the profession. Part of it involves preserving clubs and activities. She also recalled that when she was in school, she joined the Future Nurses Career Club. But she acknowledged that it’s in large part about outside people coming in to speak with students. “When I was young, the military would come into the school and offer to pay for education to go into service,” she said. “They need to make [nursing] lucrative … and need to equalize pay.” “They need to make sure that you have enough staff [to help prevent] burnout.”







From Camp Clifton to Occupational Health Nurse

Adeline (DeLiberto) DeVries

I always wanted to be a nurse. As far back as I could remember, whenever I saw a nurse on the street going to work, my heart quickened. I looked at these women with admiration and respect, and knew that someday I would be a part of this noble profession. As a graduate of the June 1952 class of Clifton High School, I was embarking on the path to my childhood dream. Along with my two classmates, Doris Wiklund and Carol Goldberg, I entered Paterson General Hospital School of Nursing. Our training was to be for three years. When completed, we would take a qualifying examination by the state of New Jersey and become licensed as registered nurses. It was an exciting time. We lived in the nurses’ home with other students and graduate nurses. We would study for the first six months at Bergen Junior College, Teaneck


May 2022 •

(now Fairleigh Dickinson University), and, for the remaining time, attend other classes at the hospital. As students, we worked in the open wards and gave direct patient care under the supervision of registered nurses. We were issued uniforms—blue and white checked dresses and an apron that we wore on Saturday mornings when we worked in the hospital. As new students, we were called probationers or “probies.” On my first morning on duty, a patient called me “nurse,” and my eyes filled with tears…my dream had come true. However, I looked with envy at other students who wore nurses’ caps. As “probies,” we wouldn’t earn that right until our college courses were completed. Our class eagerly anticipated the capping ceremony, which would take place in six months. In today’s hospitals, it’s rare to see a nurse wearing a cap or white uniform. Scrub dresses, pants, and sneakers are practical and comfortable, but those outfits make it difficult to determine who is a nurse, technician, or nursing assistant. But in the 1950s, 60’s, and 70’s, you could recognize nurses by their caps. • May 2022


Paterson General Hospital School of Nursing class of 1955 included (in the front row) Clifton’s Carol Goldberg Roth (fourth from left), Adeline (DeLiberto) DeVries (sixth from left), and Doris Wiklund Uliss (seventh from left).

Each School Had A Cap Since each school had a different style cap, you could also determine from which school they had trained. The cap would be a symbol of what we worked so hard to achieve during our first six months as probies, a symbol we would wear proudly. As we completed our probationary period, our capping ceremony was to take place. My classmates and I had anxiously waited for this night, as our family and friends would gather to share this momentous occasion with us. On that night, in honor of Florence Nightingale, we each carried a miniature lamp with a lighted candle. As the lights dimmed, we recited in unison the Nightingale Pledge: “I solemnly pledge myself before God and in the presence of this assembly, to pass my life in purity and to practice my profession faithfully. I will abstain from whatever is deleterious and mischievous, and will not take or knowingly administer any harmful drug. I will do all in my power to maintain and elevate the standards of my profession, and will hold in confidence all personal matters committed to my keeping and all family affairs coming to my knowledge in the practice of my calling. With loyalty will I endeavor to aid the physician in his work and devote myself to the welfare of those committed to my care.”


May 2022 •

Our caps were then placed on our heads. Exhilarated and beaming with happiness, we now looked forward to the remainder of our training. We had earned the right to be called “nurse.” I proudly graduated from Paterson General Hospital School of Nursing in 1955, which was on Market and Madison, and closed in 1970. I married, had four sons, and returned to my profession when the youngest started school. I worked on the floors at Paterson General, which had then moved to Hamburg Turnpike in Wayne. From 1969 to 1976, I was the Camp Nurse, the only medical person on site to work at Camp Clifton in Jefferson Township, the sleep-away camp run by the Boys & Girls Club. I stopped wearing my cap in the seventies while working in the Intensive/Coronary Care Unit at what became Wayne General. Sadly, it became hard to wear when working with the unit’s updated equipment. I finished my career with State Farm as an Occupational Health nurse in 2001. But my nurses’ cap and all that it represents will always be with me. The day I first wore my cap was the culmination of the calling I felt as a child. The Nightingale Pledge that I recited with my classmates remains the standard of my profession, which I have applied to all in my care. And… there were still days, though when I unconsciously reach to adjust my cap and then realize it isn’t there. I guess dreams never die, especially ones that come true.

Clifton Public Schools Employment Opportunities

The Clifton Public School District is currently accepting applications for the following positions:

School Nurses (NJ Certification)


Registered Nurses

Substitute Teachers

ESL Teachers (NJ Certification)

Substitute Paraprofessionals

Teacher of Mathematics (NJ Certification)

Special Education Teachers (NJ Certification)

Highly Qualified Paraprofessionals for Preschool

Board Certified Behavior Analyst for Preschool

Preschool Special Education Teachers (NJ Certification)

Apply today at Clifton Public Schools 745 Clifton Avenue Clifton, NJ 07013 Phone: 973-594-4195 E-mail: • May 2022


Soon to be...

Arianna Dubas and Jenna Joyce

A Meaningful Life The coronavirus pandemic altered the trajectory of many current and prospective nurses, but Arianna Dubas took that uncertainty and reframed it. “When the pandemic was at its worst, I was a bit hesitant going into this field and seeing how traumatic it was for the nurses,” said Dubas, 19. “I tend to gravitate toward health professions because I want to help, and want to be involved.” “[But] I go by a quote by Joshua J. Marine: ‘Challenges are what make life interesting and overcoming them is what makes life meaningful.’” That perspective is what encouraged Dubas to pursue nursing studies. The freshman attends Ramapo College on a full scholarship and likes the school’s welcoming academic environment. Once she graduates, Dubas hopes to work in Northern New Jersey – or possibly move south – in hospitals and physician offices. The areas of nursing that interest her are pediatric care, orthopedics, and travel nursing. In the meantime, Dubas has worked at Colonial Pharmacy, located at 828 Clifton Ave., since she was in high school. “Working at a pharmacy has [given] me … good interpersonal [skills],” said Dubas (CHS 2021). “I interact closely with individuals each day, including colleagues, in a fast-paced environment.” One of Dubas’ hopes as she enters the healthcare field is seeing greater access to care. “The changes that I would like to contribute to my profession is engaging patients more in their care plan,” she said. “[Helping] them understand and [educating] them about their condition and treatment choices.”


May 2022 •

Reciprocating the Kindness Almost a decade later, Jenna Joyce still remembers the kindness of nurses when she was diagnosed with Type One Diabetes. It was at age 8 that she decided she also wanted to become a nurse one day. “All of the nurses were so sweet, kind and caring,” said Joyce, 17. “I knew I would want to make others feel safe, just like the nurses made me feel.” The CHS senior plans to attend Ramapo College this fall as a Nursing Major. Although she is keeping her future options open, her ultimate goal is to become a Nurse Practitioner in Diabetes Management. Joyce credited those closest to her in helping her reach where she is currently in life. “My parents have constantly been my role models along the way,” she said. “They are always by my side, showing nothing but unconditional love and support. I would not be the person that I am today without them.” Working at Colonial Pharmacy since April of 2021 has also helped her grow. She said when she is not in school, she is usually working at the pharmacy and developing time management skills. The job also provides her with an environment to learn about different medications and to gain first-hand experience in helping people. But one of the biggest eye-openers was the pandemic. “The pandemic made me realize that nurses have to go through not only physical stress, but emotional trauma, which can be so draining,” said Joyce. “I hope that nurses get all of the respect they deserve, as they do so much for the world,” she continued. “Personally, I will make sure that I am the most empathetic, caring nurse so that no patient of mine will ever be in a situation where they feel vulnerable or uncomfortable.” • May 2022


Her unassuming niceness is the antithesis of some of the characters she’s played. Some high school seniors make their college choice based on an institution’s campus life. Some prioritize location, cost or class size. Sofia Black-D’Elia’s evaluation was a bit less conventional. “I applied to Mason Gross School of the Arts at Rutgers, because that was where James Gandolfini went, and to SUNY Purchase because that was where Edie Falco went,” Black-D’Elia, a CHS Class of 2010 graduate, recalled. “I remember sneaking into the living room and Watching The Sopranos from behind the wall because I wasn’t allowed to watch. Seeing Italian-American actors on screen, at locations I had actually been to - that felt

attainable to me. I said to myself, ‘I think I can do that.’” If that anecdote seems so Jersey, it’s because that is exactly what Black-D’Elia is: an uber-talented Garden Stater taking the country by storm with one of television’s most entertaining new series, Freeform’s Single Drunk Female. The show has garnered considerable acclaim in its first season, earning a 100% approval rating on Rotten Tomatoes and near-universal positive reviews among other outlets and aggregators. SDF chronicles the experiences of 28-year-old Samantha Fink, a rehabbing alcoholic who moves back into her mother’s home after being fired for assaulting

by Tom Szieber 60

May 2022 •

her boss. The troubled Fink is a foil of the real Black-D’Elia, whose unassuming niceness is the antithesis of some of the characters she’s played throughout her career. Her ability to so effectively portray characters that are so different than she is remarkable, especially considering that acting wasn’t something she began seriously pursuing until she was a teenager. “It wasn’t something I really wanted to do as a kid,” Black-D’Elia said. “I didn’t know actors or anyone in the business. I went to a school in Lyndhurst called Broadway Bound, where I started dancing at age 5 or 6. Dancing was the focus and acting was just a hobby.” After participating in a commercial acting class held at Broadway Bound, Sofia’s wedding in October: Gordon Joost, Carter Joost, Henry Joost, Debby agent Jason Bercy told Black-D’Elia’s Slavitt, Ainslee Thompson, Elinor D’Elia, Anthony D’Elia and Kyle Black-Smith. mother that the young performer had a natural ability, offering to send her on in the audition process for Rutgers’ B.F.A. program when auditions. another audition popped up—this one for Skins, an MTV After some honing of her talent, in 2009, she took the remake of a British show of the same title. role of Bailey Wells on longtime ABC soap opera All My The experience proved to be a watershed one in BlackChildren. Then a senior at Clifton High School, she was D’Elia’s life. • May 2022


Risk Taker “I was a huge fan of the original Skins,” Black-D’Elia said. “And was so excited to read for the American adaptation once I learned that it would have the same show-runner, Bryan Elsley. I had originally auditioned for the role of Michelle but ultimately wasn’t right for that part. Bryan then called me back in for the role of Tea, a new character which I later found out he had written with me in mind. That collaborative process is what fully sparked my passion for the actual career of acting.” Playing Marvelli, a 17-year old outwardly confident (but truly vulnerable), sexually open, risk-taker, changed D’Elia’s perspective, allowing her to believe that she could excel as an actor if she worked at it enough. After Skins concluded, she attended William Esper Studio (a two-year acting school in New York attended by the likes of Kathy Bates, Sam Rockwell and Amy Schumer). Esper founded the acting program at Rutgers, giving Black-D’Elia a chance to get the experience she thought she’d missed. Several of her next few roles each added another layer to her already stacked skill set. The 2016 HBO miniseries The Night Of—in which she played murder victim Andrea Cornish—gave her a chance to work with writer/director Steven Zaillian, whose detail-oriented approach showed Black-D’Elia how to find specific layers to characters she plays. A year later, as Sabrina Pemberton in Fox’s The Mick, she realized her passion for comedy, seeing it as a better way to spend her days. “I am definitely more drawn to comedy right now,” she said. “It is collaborative and joyful but also very challenging. Keeping up with Kaitlin Olson [of It’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia fame] on The Mick was one of the most challenging and rewarding gigs I’ve had.” Single Drunk Female came along at just the right time, after Black-D’Elia had wrapped Bryan Cranston’s Your Honor, a dark, grim series with a prestigious cast. BlackD’Elia was staying in Upstate New York reading scripts


May 2022 •

and fell in love with SDF. With Jenni Konner running and Leslye Headland directing and executive producing, Black-D’Elia says she became “desperate to do it.” “They were already on my dream board of people to work with,” she said. “Loving the script was just the icing on the cake.” Single Drunk Female (which concluded its first season on March 17) has been a hit, likely because of Black-D’Elia’s outstanding portrayal of the lead character. Fink is a versatile character with depth and likeability, and the character’s versatility gives the show a lot of options in season two. “A friend of mine said that with bad writing there is only one way to play something, but with good writing there’s a million,” Black-D’Elia said. “And that’s when it gets fun. You don’t want to be boxed into a corner.” Her fame has not made her forget about the people and places she holds near and dear. If anything, it has deepened her affection for her family, friends and hometown. “He is my favorite person on the planet,” she said of her brother, Kyle Black-Smith. “And he always has been. He is so supportive and protective. He’s my big brother but also my best friend and my bodyguard, which is a pretty sweet deal.” And as for the city where she was raised, she relishes every chance to come back. “When I was growing up in Clifton I just wanted to get out so badly,” she said. “Now all I want to do is go home and be with my friends and family and go to the diner. Any diner. New York diners just aren’t the same. The first thing people know about me is that I’m a Jersey girl. A friend recently told me they thought it was a shtick until they came to my wedding at The Belmont Tavern and realized that, if anything, I had underplayed it. This place and the people that made me are intrinsic to who I am.” • May 2022


By Carol Leonard

From HHH to the Hanky Panky at Roulette Records If you’re a Baby Boomer, especially one who came of age during the rock ‘n’ roll breakout decade of the 1960s, you can probably sing a few songs penned and performed by the legendary singer and songwriter Tommy James. From Hanky Panky to Mony Mony, Crimson and Clover, Crystal Blue Persuasion, I Think We’re Alone Now and numerous other hit singles and albums, Tommy James and The Shondells are among the most successful and longest performing music groups in the world. To his credit, James has 23 gold singles, nine gold and platinum albums and has sold more than 100 million records worldwide. Over the years, more than 300 other recording artists, including Neil Diamond, Bruce Springsteen, Kelly Clarkson and Prince, have produced their own renditions of James’ songs or performed them in concert. His music has been incorporated into countless movies, TV shows and advertisements. Born in Dayton, Ohio as Thomas Jackson, Tommy James lived most of his youth with his family in Niles, Michigan.


May 2022 •

In New York City with Dick Clark in 1984, the book cover, and Tommy James with Ed Sullivan back in the late 1960s.

But, did you know that from 1973-2000 the famous rock star lived here in Clifton? James had been living in Manhattan, while recording for Roulette Records, when he decided that he wanted to move out to the suburbs. His friend, music producer Joel Diamond, lived in Clifton and his parents were in the real estate business. They operated The Diamond Agency (now owned by Frank Cortes) and they sold James his house on Woodlawn Ave. in the Montclair Heights section. “I wanted to get out of the city and I really fell in love with Jersey,” James said. “Jersey reminds me a lot of Michigan, just more crowded. It has the same rolling hills and greenery, just not as much space.” Living in North Jersey made it easy for him to commute to the city and be close to where much of the music industry is based. “Plus, I could go home and see squirrels and have a fence.” James said he thinks of New York as a theme park. “I pay my admission to get in, and then I go home.”

While in Clifton, James enjoyed dining at the old Robin Hood Inn on Valley Road. “I loved the Robin Hood,” he said. “There was a lot of history there. I heard the theme from Casablanca was written there.” He is speaking of “As Time Goes By” a song written by Herman Hupfeld in 1931 which indeed was penned on the ivories at the Robin Hood. James said he also enjoyed visiting and riding through nearby Brookdale Park. James was only 26 when he came to Clifton, so he lived a good part of his young adult life in town. “I feel like I grew up there,” he said. “I still have great fondness for Clifton.” When he decided to leave Clifton for a larger home, he didn’t go far. He moved to Cedar Grove, where he continues to live with his late wife Lynda, who died earlier this year. James still passes though Clifton from time to time and sometimes drives through his old neighborhood. “I get very nostalgic when I do,” he said. • May 2022


One of the most interesting relationships that developed for James during the early years of his career was with former Vice President Hubert Humphrey when Humphrey was the Democratic nominee for president in 1968. James and his group had appeared earlier at a rally in New York for then Democratic presidential candidate Robert F. Kennedy. After Kennedy was assassinated and Humphrey won the nomination, his staff contacted James to head the presidential candidate’s Youth Affairs Commission and to appear with him at campaign Tommy James and the Shondells in the 1960s. rallies. “He was one of the nicest people I ever met,” James said of Humphrey, often referred to as HHH. “We stayed good friends until the day he died.” Humphrey actually wrote the liner notes to James’ Crimson and Clover album. More than six decades after producing his first big hit, Hanky Panky, James is still going strong, performing with The Shondells (whose members have changed several times over the years) to sell-out crowds in various venues around the country. “I feel blessed that I’ve had this longevity,” he said. The fans have been great.” He’s also out and about promoting his new book, Me, The Mob and The Music, an autobiography that was released in 2010. Much of the book is about his relationship with Roulette Records, which produced all of James’ early hits while he was under contract with the firm from 1966-74. Owned and operated by Morris Levy, Roulette Records was also a front for the Genovese crime family and Levy James said that he’s been “flabbergasted” at the response was considered to be the “Godfather” of the music indushe’s had to the book. His story is expected to be brought to try. He was later exposed and convicted of extortion. life on screen and in a Broadway in the near future. James contends that he and his group were unaware of One of the ironies of his days with Roulette, James adthe sinister side of the company when they signed with mits, is that it was Levy and Roulette Records who made them and that he was cheated out of millions in royalties him famous. over the years he was under contract with Roulette. “I owe what I am to Roulette Records,” he said. “With“It was a dangerous place to be,” he said of his relationout it, there would be no Tommy James.” ship with Levy and Roulette. “And none of the fans knew Also revealed in the book is the story of Tommy’s subabout it.” stance abuse and other seedier aspects of his personal life James said that he waited until Levy and the rest of the during his earlier career that, today, he is glad are behind mob-related regulars in Roulette had died before he began him. “I had to tattletale on myself,” he said. “But if you work on the book with collaborator Martin Fitzpatrick. hadn’t been the person you were then, you wouldn’t be the They used the titles of James’ hit songs as the chapter person you are now.” titles in the book, which took eight years to complete. Among their upcoming gigs, Tommy James and The “It’s a story I had been wanting to tell for a long time,” Shondells will appear in concert at the Palladium Times he said. “Frankly, it was very therapeutic to write.” Square on May 7.


May 2022 • • May 2022


The Woman’s Club

of Allwood

at 90

By Ariana Puzzo At a recent meeting at the Allwood Library, from left seated: Barbara Lemley, Barbara Dougherty, Dorothy Gondola, Doris Monteith. Standing: Glory Smith, Paula Saccoman, Vera Greco, Pat Siems , Fran Powers, Irene VanNortwick, Jean Rudolph, Barbara Tencza. Not pictured: Rosemarie Aloia, Clara Bate, Barbara Bisaccio, Jean Fersch, Michele Gerke, Loretta Hochmuth, Annemarie Hollenback, Joanne Krudys, Sham Mazejy, Toni Salerno, Terry Scartelli, Sara Zschoche.

From the first time that a small group of women gathered at the home of the late Mrs. Theodore Travis to the present day 90 years later, the Woman’s Club of Allwood has been closely associated with the Allwood Branch Library. “It’s one of the last bastions of club work that people belong to,” said President Dorothy Gondola, 83. “Senior clubs are diminishing.” “The average age is about 80 … but we still feel that we can make a difference even though we’re not as hands-on,” continued Gondola. “We’re still trying to reach out and help others who are less fortunate than we are.” In 1938, six years after the Woman’s Club of Allwood was founded, the late Mrs. James E. Woodall and Ruth Haberle conceived the idea of a branch library staffed by club volunteers. With the approval of the late Dora Travis, who was then president of the Club, books donated by local residents were cataloged and indexed. Twelve hundred books were placed in circulation in the Allwood Community Church basement at the dedication on May 19, 1938. A city librarian instructed the Woman’s Club members in library procedure.


May 2022 •

In 1940, the library was moved to the chicken coop that had previously served as the first firehouse of the Allwood Volunteer Fire Company House No. 2. However, the “Coop”, as it was called, was only about 14 square feet and hot in the summer, cold in the winter. A pot-bellied stove supplied heat. Husbands of Club members helped renovate the “Coop” and chopped firewood for the stove. The library had grown to 3,000 books and five large bookcases. This past March, the group presented Barbara Altilio, the Allwood Branch Manager of the Clifton Public Library, with a collection of books at the Club’s March General Meeting. One of the donated books was in memory of past President Barbara A. Lemley, who frequented the monthly Club book group led by Barbara Dougherty. As a member of the WCA for 53 years, Gondola is proud of the Club’s longevity. Despite the smaller group of about 20 members, she said they are still successful at doing positive things in the community. “We’re surprised at ourselves that we have accomplished as much as we do,” said Gondola. “It’s a great thing in addition to making friends through the years.” • May 2022


The Woman’s Club

of Allwood

Triple Effort The next “home” of the library was School 9, where an addition to the school provided space for the library. This unique undertaking combined the efforts of the Board of Education, the library board, and the Woman’s Club of Allwood. In this three-fold effort, the Board of Education provided the space, light, heat, and maintenance service; the library board provided the books; and the Club provided the staff. Each class in the school was permitted to use the library one day a week, attended by a teacher. However, the library outgrew the school addition and, in 1956, a salaried staff took over the library duties.


May 2022 •

In 2003, The Allwood Women’s Club at the Avenue of Flags.

The Dream Realized The founders of the library, the small group of women who first conceived of the idea, had always envisioned a separate building. Finally, the dream was realized when on May 4, 1969, the groundbreaking took place. On May 3, 1970, the Allwood Branch of the Clifton Public Library was dedicated. A gift of $1,000 was donated by the Club at the dedication. A lighted floor globe and turntable for the record room was purchased. The work of the Woman’s Club of Allwood has not only served the library. Each year the club budgets $5,000 to give to scholarships and to support other causes, including St. Peter’s Haven, Hope Through Care, Inc. / Grandma’s Place, Eva’s Village, and veterans. But Gondola noted that the pandemic caused them to lose some older members who don’t use Zoom. She now sends out monthly newsletters via mail to keep everyone informed. From October to May, the group meets inperson on the first Monday of the month from 1-3 pm in the Community Room of the Allwood Branch Library, at 44 Lyall Rd. They hope next year to bring back paid programs on topics like health and finances, as well as musical programs. “I hope we can maintain our current membership and are able to still serve the community in the manner we have these past years,” said Gondola. “We love to welcome guests and members of all ages.” Go to and follow their Instagram page @womansclubofallwood for regular updates.

Clifton PUBLIC SCHOOLS Kindergarten Registration Parents of Clifton Residents who will be 5 years old by October 1, 2022 can register as of March 1, 2022

Pre-School Registration Parents of Clifton Residents who will be 4 years old by October 1, 2022 can register as of March 1, 2022 Limited Space Available, requirements can be found at

Limited Income Eligible 3-year-old Pre-School Program please call 973-472-8880

Go Online To Register Registration forms for both programs, required documents, and details can be found at:

English | Español | ‫ | ﻋﺮﺑﻰ‬Polskie |


Registration Information • May 2022


By Ariana Puzzo Abby Ayoub knows the importance of costeffective eye care and eyewear, but she also sees the inherent value of community. These efforts as the CEO of Optical Academy have allowed the business to travel across the country to service schools, worksites, and communities. This March, ROI-NJ recognized Ayoub on its list of 2022 ROI Influencers: Women in Business. Ranked at number 35, the list includes the Top 40 women in business across the state. As the CEO and founder of Optical Academy since 2010, ROI-NJ noted that Ayoub is “disrupting [a] $40 billion optical industry.” For Ayoub, the motivation is simple – all people, especially children, deserve comprehensive eye care and services. “If you’re not visually comfortable, you can’t learn or excel in school,” said Ayoub, 48. “Schools build communities, and educating parents, children, and educators help them to all understand what’s going on with a child and Mobile vision team member Robert Velez with founder and CEO Abby what they need.” Ayoub and a young patient. “It’s our job as eye care professionals to go out there and serve [people] onsite if pre-vision screenings and benefits fairs for the they can’t come to an office,” she continued. most fragile communities. “There should be a mobile eyecare unit in all Optical Academy is also involved with Clifcommunities to fill that gap.” ton organizations. In February, the Clifton EduAyoub originally founded Optical Acadcation Foundation posted on their Instagram @ emy in Paterson. After a fire in 2013, the cliftoneducationfoundation about Optical Acadbusiness moved to its Clifton office, at 1430 emy’s “extremely generous” philanthropic conMain Ave. The mobile vision team has travtribution. eled across the nation for the past 12 years and “If you’re doing business in a community, has attended over 15,000 onsite events. They you have to give back [to] the community,” said have also screened and examined over 1 milAyoub. “It’s our duty. It’s a no-brainer.” lion students. “We have budgets just to make sure that in But they have gotten involved with the the communities that we do business, we are communities they serve in other ways. Ayoub describes a giving back internally for the same patients we’re serving,” strong partnership with the New Jersey Education Associashe continued. “Anything that we can afford to give, we tion, discussions with local leaders, and their work to host have to.”


May 2022 •

On April 27, the Clifton Republican Club presented the 2022 Susan B. Anthony Awards to (from left) Irene De Vita, Cathy Linker, Robin Gibson, Gina Scaduto Zhitnick, NJ Senator Kristin Corrado, Barbara Denherder, Janina Lapczynski and Orietta Magaly Fernandez. For more on the Clifton GOP, contact Ricky Farfan at 973-557-7000 or email

LPGA @ UMCC Upper Montclair Country Club will host the LPGA Cognizant Founders Cup from May 9-15 with defending champion Jin Young Ko, number two ranked, Nelly Korda and an elite field of LPGA golfers. The Clifton event pays tribute to the 13 founding members of the LPGA, including surviving founders Marlene Bauer Hagge and Shirley Spork. UMCC has hosted tournaments for all three professional golf tours, including the LPGA in 1979 and 1980, 1983 and 1984, and 2007 through 2009. This legendary A.W. Tillinghast golf course design underwent a major LPGA founder Marlene Bauer Hagge and defending champion Jin Young Ko. renovation in the 1950s, transforming it into its present 27-hole layout. tickets; a logo hat, polo shirt and an outerwear piece; a Golf fans, residents and supporters of women’s golf are commemorative pin and credential; a compact sports seat; welcomed to visit the brand ambassador center and register free dining on days of service; free general admission parkto serve as ambassadors that week. ing on days of service; and an invitation to the Ambassador Ambassadors will assist in both on-course and behind appreciation party. the scenes capacities for the week-long event. Those who For more details, go to purchase an Ambassador Package will receive an up-closeAmbassadors serve as the conduit between the players, and-personal experience with a world-class professional spectators, event operations and media covering the tourgolf tournament operation. Priced at $80 apiece, the packnament, delivering relevant information while providing age includes six single (good any day) general admission important services and brand representatives. • May 2022


Safety & Service at Botany City Hall Sub Station Service, safety and wellness has a permanent home in Botany Village with the April 8 opening of a neighborhood City Hall at 207 Parker Ave. The origins of the facility, which provides city health services and offices for the Clifton Community Policing team, began some four years ago with research coordinated by the Clifton Health Department. The 2019 study showed that Botany residents were lacking access to a variety of city services. To address those desires and to show more of a public safety presence, the new satellite city hall office will offer vaccines and clinics to screenings and check ups as well as an increase in visible and engaged police officers.


May 2022 • • May 2022


20212 Two Page Spread Bloomin 5k_v2.pdf



10:45 PM

HAVEN For the Hungry and Homeless

To all 2022 BLOOMIN’ sponsors, runners, walkers and volunteers— THANK YOU for helping us to keep our food pantry running and growing!




BLOOMIN’ 2023 is already in the works!







May 2022 • • May 2022


SUMMER PROGRAMS The Clifton Recreation Department is gearing up to provide a fun and safe return to summer programming. This summer we will have three (3) programs (Summer Days in the Park, Lots-O-Fun and Future Leaders) offered for our weekly day camp programs as well as an amazing line up of exciting and unique specialty camps. Registration is now open. Register at For additional information call 973 470-5956.

Summer Days in the Park A three (3) week program for youth ages 6 (as of October 1, 2021) through age 13 (as of October 1, 2021). There will be 2 sessions provided: Session 1: July 5 – July 22 Session 2: July 25 – August 12 The program will be conducted at School # 1 (158 Park Slope) OR School # 13 (782 Van Houten Avenue), Monday through Friday from 9:00 a.m. – 4:00 p.m. The cost per session will be $150.00 for residents and $240.00 for non-residents. The days will be filled with athletic activities, crafts, social games, contests, events, trips and FUN! There are additional costs for trips, special events and T-shirts. Trips are conducted once a week and leave from and return to the school sites. Registration for trips have specific deadlines which can be found online. All counselors will be attending the trips, so if you do not go on the trip there will be no program available that day.

Summer Days in the Park Schedule SESSION 1 (July 5 – July 22) Week 1 Theme: Peace, Love & Camp Trip: Castle Fun Center

SESSION 2 (July 25 – August 12) Week 1 Theme: Enchanted Summer Trip: Camelbeach Waterpark

Week 2 Theme: Ooh La Llama Trip: Splashplex Special Event: Camp Dance

Week 2 Theme: Lost in the Outback Trip: NJ Jackals

Week 3 Theme: Game On Trip: Urban Air Special Event: Camp Olympics & Camp Newspaper Session 1


May 2022 •

Week 3 Theme: Emoji Take-Over Trip: Funplex Special Event: End of Summer Picnic & Camp Newspaper Session 2


A three (3) week program for youth ages 4 (as of October 1, 2021) through age 5 (as of October 1, 2021). There will be 2 sessions provided: Session 1: July 5 – July 22 Session 2: July 25 – August 12 The program will be conducted at School # 15 (700 Gregory Avenue), Monday through Friday from 9:00 a.m. – 4:00 p.m. The cost per session will be $150.00 for residents and $240.00 for non-residents. The days will be filled with activities, crafts, social games, contests, events, trips and FUN! There are additional costs for trips, special events and T-shirts. Trips are conducted once a week and leave from and return to the school sites. Registration for trips have specific deadlines which can be found online. All counselors will be attending the trips, so if you do not go on the trip there will be no program available that day.

LOTS-O-FUN Schedule SESSION 1 (July 5 – July 22) Week 1 Theme: Spaced Out Trip: Catch Air

SESSION 2 (July 25 – August 12) Week 1 Theme: Enchanted Summer Trip: Imagine That

Week 2 Theme: Pirates vs Dinos Trip: Donaldson Farm Special Event: Summer Luau

Week 2 Theme: Lost in the Outback Trip: Frog Falls Waterpark

Week 3 Theme: Ooh, La Llama Trip: Funplex Special Event: Camp Newspaper Session 1

Week 3 Theme: Emoji Take-Over Trip: End of Summer Picnic • May 2022


Clifton Recreation


Future Leaders

Future Leaders is a counselor in training program designed to train our future leaders in Clifton. The program is for teens who have completed 9th Grade and up or are age 15 or older. Participants must attend summer staff training at the beginning of the summer and be available for at least 5 of the 6-week program conducted from July 5 – August 12, 2022.

The cost of the program is $55.00 for the summer and is only open to Clifton Residents.

Summer Specialty Camps Summer Specialty Camps are generally a one-week camp that focus on a particular subject. The cost of these camps, age of participants, and dates conducted, vary from camp to camp. Go to our website at and click on ‘programs’ to obtain the specialty camp descriptions, dates, times, locations and participant requirements.

Baseball Camp

Hitting, throwing, fielding and other general offensive and defensive skills. Ages 7-17. Conducted by Joe Rivera, CHS Varsity Baseball Coach.

Baseball Pitchers & Catchers Camp

Cover techniques and drills specific to pitchers & catchers. Ages 7-17. Conducted by Joe Rivera, CHS Varsity Baseball Coach.

Eureka! Invention Camp

Learn to overcome challenges using basic materials and simple Machines that make you think outside of the box. Ages 6-12. Conducted by Mad Science.

NASA Journey into the Outer Space Camp

Learn about stars, planets, comets and more. Learn about living in space away from gravity. Ages 6-12. Conducted by Mad Science.

Tennis Camp

Fashion Sewing Camp

For students who love fashion and clothing. Learn how to work with sewing patterns, use a sewing machine and create a DIY project. Ages 8-12. Conducted by So You…

Designed for beginners through intermediate tennis players. Learn the game, improve your skills and develop sportsmanship. Ages 7-17. Conducted by Tennis Dynamics.

Intro to the Sewing Machine Camp

Soccer Camp

Ninja Warrior Camp

Learn or improve on your soccer skills and game strategy. Ages 4-14. Conducted by NY Red Bulls.


May 2022 •

Learn how to use a sewing machine and make fun usable projects. Ages 7-10. Conducted by So You…

Climb, swing, jump, and run a unique ninja warrior obstacle course. Ages 5-12. Conducted by Grit Ninja.

Battle of the Week Cooking Camp

Martial Art Camp

“Cake” Decorating Camp

Night Owl Camp

Each day will feature a different themed food battle such as cupcake decorating, food art, deserts, etc. Ages 5-11. Conducted by Chef it Up.

Learn techniques to decorate cakes, cupcakes, cake pops or cookies. Ages 5-11. Conducted by Chef it Up.

Broadway Camp

This exciting musical theater camp will include work on vocal, acting, dance, and finish with a performance. Ages 6-9 Peter Pan & Ages 10–12 Shrek. Conducted by REX Arts.

Chemical Creations Camp

Conduct a variety of scientific experiments as you learn about energy, Molecules, and more. Take home your own chemistry lab kit. Ages 6-11. Conducted by Minds in Motion.

Cybercrawler Robot Camp

Build and take home your own cybercrawler robot. Learn engineering skills and coding at this robotic experience. Ages 7-11. Conducted by Minds in Motion.

Fun on the Farm Camp

Activities include gardening, feeding chickens and goats, arts and crafts, and nature-based activities. Ages 5-8. Conducted by City Green.

Street Jazz Dance Camp

Learn jazz techniques partnered with intricate styling of Hip Hop. Ages 6-12. Conducted by AMB Dance Theatre.

Wilderness Club Camp

Calling all explorers for this week-long camp at Ringwood State Park. Venture on hiking trails and learn about the forests and the plants and critters that live there. Individuals will need to find their own transportation to Ringwood State Park. Ages 7-10. Conducted by Lokai Rose.

Mad About Art Camp

Learn the basics of Karate and Ninjutsu during this two-week, 8 lesson camp. Ages 6-14. Conducted by The Academy of Martial Arts.

At this two-night camp, learn about what goes on in the forest when you go to sleep at night. Using night systems to catch incredible bugs and nocturnal creatures, star gaze, night hike and make your own citronella candles. Individuals will need to find their own transportation to Ringwood State Park. Ages 10 – 13. Conducted by Lokai Rose.

Intro to Volleyball Camp

Learn the basics of volleyball in the four-week course. Designed for beginners to the sport. Ages 7-15. Conducted by North Jersey Volleyball Club.

Special Events Special Events will be conducted throughout the summer. Check out our website and click on ‘programs’ to find out more information about each of the events listed below as well as new events that may be added.


Fishing Derby


Daddy Daughter Picnic Philadelphia Flower Show Trip


Obser Concert Series Clifton Night at the Jackals


Obser Concert Series Drive-In Movie Family Camp Out Subway Series Trip to Yankee Stadium

For anyone who loves to paint, draw, use clay, and create art. Ages 5-10. Conducted by Abrakadoodle.

Summer Counselors Needed

Teen Entrepreneurship Camp

The Clifton Recreation Department is hiring summer camp counselors. Applicants must be at least 18 years of age or older & will have graduated high school as of June 2022. Work hours are Monday to Friday from 8:45 am – 4:15 pm from July 5th – August 16th. Staff training will be conducted the week before camp begins.

Grasp the fundamentals of entrepreneurship and best business practice for future success. Create you own Print-On-Demand E-commerce business. Learn to grow your own business. Must have your own laptop. Ages 13-16. Conducted by Minds in Motion. • May 2022


Lujain Alomari, Chloe Hernandez, Antonio Bordamonte, Jacob Zybura.

Here are the Mustangs of the Month for May 2022.

These four students, one from each grade, were selected by the vice principals at CHS, to be spotlighted for their personal achievements and school-wide contributions. Freshman Lujain Alomari Applying herself to all of her classes and asking questions is how Lujain Alomari managed to successfully transition to high school. The freshman has committed herself to spending her available time focusing on her academic work. “I am driven to be successful,” said Alomari (CHS 2025), “and I know dedicating myself to my studies will help me become successful.” Given her newness to CHS, Alomari has not yet looked into the academic programs. But she said she looks forward to learning more about all of the available opportunities and finding a program that best suits her. In the meantime, math is Alomari’s favorite subject. “I’ve always enjoyed the subject and found that it comes easily to me,” said Alomari. “Math class is one of the classes that I really like going to.” Alomari also has people to look to as sources of inspiration. Although she does not name a specific person who has inspired her, she said that successful people encourage her to put effort into her endeavors. “Successful people [inspire me] because they put in a lot of effort for their success and it all paid off in the end,” she said. “I’d like to be that person, therefore I try to put in a lot of effort.”


May 2022 •

Sophomore Chloe Hernandez Discovering new interests is part of the high school experience. For Chloe Hernandez, it has translated to embracing unexpectedly engaging subject areas. “I’ve developed a love for Chemistry class this year,” said Hernandez (CHS 2024). “I’ve never been a science buff, so when I started to get into the class, I was surprised.” “I like the math aspects and the topics are never too hard for me to understand,” she continued. “It’s also just a really interesting class.” Now a sophomore, Hernandez plans to take advantage of the early college programs that CHS offers in her final two years at the school. Her extracurricular activities have included her role as a publicist for the drama club. She also played LeFou in the recent CHS production of “Beauty and the Beast.” Despite keeping busy, Hernandez has found ways to be successful in high school. Part of it involves letting herself feel any strong emotions and release stress as needed. Another part involves surrounding herself with people who work hard and love what they do and who they are. “When things in life go wrong and I need a break from stress,” she said, “I know I have people in my life who I can turn to.”

Junior Antonio Bordamonte When Antonio Bordamonte considers his great inspiration, the junior thinks first of his mother. “Throughout my whole life, she’s been a single mother taking care of my sister and me,” said Bordamonte (CHS 2023). “She is the most diligent person that I’ve known, and she is always sacrificing for my family.” “She is the strongest woman that I know,” he added. Bordamonte is similarly committed to his own areas of involvement. He serves as the vice president of the junior class and is a current member of the CHS Key Club. During the fall, Bordamonte runs cross country, he plays basketball in the winter, and runs track in spring. All of these social extracurriculars meant that the coronavirus pandemic’s forced isolation would inevitably prove difficult. “Last year when school was virtual, it was a difficult time,” said Bordamonte. “It was difficult to find the motivation to get up and stare at a screen for most of the day.” Now, Bordamonte has his sights set on his future goals. One of the goals is attending college to study veterinary medicine, which relates back to his favorite class. “Biology labs are always the most fun, and a specific branch in biology that I really love is genetics,” he said.

Senior Jacob Zybura As Jacob Zybura prepares to leave Colfax Avenue, he cites teachers John O’Reilly and Christopher Henry as major influences. “They both encouraged me to question the world around me and never be satisfied with my pursuit of knowledge,” said Zybura (CHS 2022). “They both work tirelessly to provide the best education possible for their students, even though the ways through which they do so are very different.” Zybura also acknowledged the influence of Coach Stan Lembryk. Zybura said that his coach’s encouragement and support helped him reach more of his goals than he could have fathomed. Life after CHS involves college and a prospective economics major. Zybura was accepted by the University of Notre Dame and Williams College, and he is considering a career in finance. One thing he’ll take with him from high school is time management skills. “Once I learned how to manage my time between school, extracurriculars, and friends, I was able to enjoy all three equally,” said Zybura. “There is tremendous value in having a well-rounded high school experience, and all three play a huge role in that.” • May 2022



As part of a CAA Show and Sale, works by various member artists are on exhibit at the Main Library through May 21. Pictured here with samples of their art are Susana BarbettiNorton, Tom Dzubina and Vanessa Campos.

The annual Clifton Association of Artists Show & Sale at the Main Memorial Library is exhibited through May 21. The CAA is open to professional and non-professional artists, including those who do not paint but simply appreciate art and the discussions at the meetings. The Clifton Board of Recreation sponsors the Association. Annual art shows and special events, including a winter and spring indoor exhibit and sale, and a summer outdoor show and sale are on the agenda. Meetings are held at 6:30 pm on the first Monday of each month from October through June. The group typically met at the Clifton Senior Center Community Building, but since the coronavirus pandemic, they meet at the Main Memorial Library, at 292 Piaget Ave. The members gather at that time to discuss any current events at a brief meeting, usually followed by a demonstration of painting techniques. Refreshments are provided. Annual dues are $25. If interested in becoming a member, contact Clifton Association of Artists President Tom Dzubina at 973 546-8977.


May 2022 •

Visit the Clifton Arts Center’s exhibit, “Genes & Genius” by Gary Erbe and Chantell Van Erbé. The exhibit, running from May 11 to July 30, is open to the public Wednesdays through Saturdays from 1-4 pm. The father-daughter duo have respective careers that span several decades and are both self-taught artists. The Arts Center, at 900 Clifton Ave., will host a meet and greet with both artists on Saturday, May 14. For more info, visit or @ cliftonartscenter on Facebook and Instagram. The 2022 CAC City Wide Garage Sale is on June 25 to benefit the Clifton Arts Center Inc. So gather your unwanted items, clean them up, sign up and sell them, turning the profits to the CAC. Applications for the event must be submitted to the City Clerk, at 900 Clifton Ave., by June 15 at 3 pm. The city will advertise all locations. To print a form or learn more about the item regulations, visit Call the Arts Center at 973-472-5499 with questions. • May 2022



The Clifton Fire Department Mini-Pet Drive is June 7 to June 30 in support of the Clifton Animal Shelter. Donate new dish towels, cat and dog toys, small and medium litter boxes, Special Kitty Cat Litter (Red Bag — Walmart), and dog collars, harnesses, and leashes. Drop off donations on the porch of Clifton Fire Headquarters, at 880 Clifton Ave.

Former Mustang Quarterback and CHS 1996 grad DJ Andrew Mendez will host a six-hour set on May 13 for “A Night of Classics From ‘A to Z’” at Society, located at 1050 Wall St. W, Lyndhurst. Mendez has teamed up with entertainment promoter Joey Barcellona, whose former Allwood Road live music venue Bliss Lounge closed in 2017. In its heyday, Bliss hosted Trey Songz, Snoop Dogg, Rick Ross, and 50 Cent. Event doors open at 8 pm. For reservations, visit or text/call 862-591-6596.

St. Brendan and St. George church at 154 East 1st St., will host a food truck festival May 14, from noon to 6 pm. Admission is $2 for ages 3 and up. Rain date May 21. Call 973-772-1115 or visit Power of One’s Kim Castellano offers Stress Relief Workshops in the WWMS Auditorium, at 1400 Van Houten Ave. on May 19 and June 2. To register, call 862239-5905 or email The Friends of the Clifton Public Library presents Mike Luipersbeck & The All Star Trio spring concert on May 17 at 2 pm. The free event is open to all at the Main Library, 292 Piaget Ave. Questions? Call: 973-772-5500. American Legion Auxiliary Unit 347 hosts a Flavorful Fundraiser at Gallery Bistro 1281 Main Ave. on May 24 until 8 pm. Dine in or take out and Gallery Bistro will donate 20% of the pre-tax bill to 347. Visit Facebook and search American Legion Auxiliary 347 and print out a coupon or write to Chris Liszner grandmachrissy99@aol. com for more details or to have coupon sent to you. Historic Botany Summer Concerts at Sullivan Square begin June 5 with The Retrocasters. The free outdoor concerts begin at 6:30 pm. The schedule runs through August 27. On June 10 Andy Lackow and Mess Around perform. On June 17 Carlos Colina and the Grind take the stage. Put on your dancing shoes for the June 25 hometown favorite Swingman and the Misfit Mutts.


May 2022 •

Family Fun Day


No Admission DJ Music I Picnic Lunch I Vendors I Giveaways Bring your lawn chairs and dancing shoes Swingman and the Misfit Mutts Live Band Honoring Mrs. Maria Talley, Retired Clifton School 12 Principal and community supporter

Sunday, June 5th I 1-4pm

Rain Date June 12

Nash Park, 700 Lexington Ave, Clifton NJ Parking lot on Hamilton Ave


Thank you to our

Event Sponsors

Story Time in the Park and Activity Sand Art Activity Touch the Fire Truck Corn Hole Game Free School Supplies and Backpacks

Free Back2School Giveaway For more info Contact 201-328-2326 All proceeds benefit

Vendor Sponsorship Contact 201-328-2326 • May 2022


SEE YOU APRIL 26, 2067

On April 26, the Clifton Centennial time capsule was lowered after a twoyear delay. The time capsule, buried at City Hall’s Centennial Square, will be unearthed on April 26, 2067, the city’s 150th birthday. City officials and residents attended the event, previously postponed by the coronavirus pandemic. Although the city marked its centennial in 2017, the project picked up traction in 2019. Similar to the time capsule unearthed in 2017, containing a letter from former Mayor James Vanecek, Mayor James Anzaldi penned his own letter to future residents. The time capsule, at 900 Clifton Ave., contains other city documents and memorabilia, ranging from fads and facts of our era to copies of the Clifton Merchant Magazine.


May 2022 •

Between Earth Day, Arbor Day...

and the opening of the Community Gardens in Dutch Hill by City Green, it’s no wonder Clifton is a Tree City USA!

At top of page, the Clifton Beautification Committee’s Centennial 5 Year Anniversary Tree Planting Project asks folks to sponsor a tree. The committee is selling (for $155) then planting 105 Red Maple trees in Clifton’s parks and green spaces. To donate a tree, call Angela Montague at 973-557-3886. Inset top at the April 23 Dundee Island clean is Aziz Elmhada. He’s holding a camcorder which washed up on the peninsula in Botany. He was one of 33 volunteers who collected 42 bags of plastic, metal and other trash. Doing the hard work and planting Red Maples in Latteri Park are DPW workers Chris Tudda, Clifford Kuzmuk, Danny Frias, John McIlwain, Steven Falsetta and Thomas Santeramo.

Have Clifton Merchant Mailed. $40 per year $65 for two • Mailed via first class to your home

Name:____________________________________________________________ Address:__________________________________________________________ City:___________________________ State:_____________________________ Zip:___________________ Phone:____________________________________ Email:____________________________________________________________ Please make checks to Tomahawk Promotions, 1288 Main Ave., Clifton NJ 07011 • May 2022



May 2022 • • May 2022


Birthdays & Celebrations - May 2022

Happy Birthday to.... Send dates & names...

Kristy and Ihor Andruch celebrate 20 years of marriage on May 4; their son, Stefan Andruch turned 18 on May 3. Jurij P. Dubas turned 18 on May 3. Gia Camille Genardi turned 22 on May 2. Richard Hango................... Mike Szwec....................... Samantha Cruz................... Lou DeStefano.................... Jessica Perez...................... Jordan Lynn Bykowsky......... Maria DeGraaf................... Julia Komarczyk.................. Irene Kuruc......................... Margie Maloney................. Thomas Zangara................. John Anderson Jr................. Spencer Flynn..................... Russell Courtney.................. Dolores Hatala................... Jordan Kulesa..................... Vanessa Laine Montesano....

5/1 5/1 5/2 5/2 5/2 5/3 5/3 5/3 5/3 5/3 5/3 5/4 5/4 5/6 5/6 5/6 5/6

Mary Domyon.................... 5/7 Margie Hatala.................... 5/7 Dorothy Alburo................... 5/8 Terry Capilli....................... 5/8 Jim Findlay......................... 5/8 Alexandra Homsany............ 5/8 Rory Houston...................... 5/8 Ashley Kulesa..................... 5/8 David Peter Mosciszko......... 5/8 Matthew Nagy................... 5/8 Christine Siluk..................... 5/8 Thomas Steranko................ 5/8 Petey Pathos....................... 5/9 Amelia Smith...................... 5/9 Ray Zang........................... 5/9 Joe Gore.......................... 5/10 Rebecca DeChellis............ 5/11

Brandon Gorny................. 5/11 Jessica Camp................... 5/12 Joe De Liberto................... 5/12 Michael Lonison................ 5/12 Donna De Liberto.............. 5/13 Jeff Reilly.......................... 5/13 Michael Zawicki............... 5/13 Yassin Aburomi................. 5/14 Chloe Landrith ................. 5/14 Chuck Amucka................. 5/14 Alice De Liberto................ 5/14 Dorothy Brown.................. 5/15 Earl Grosser Jr.................. 5/15 Victoria Leja..................... 5/15 Fred Gurtman................... 5/16 Mark McGuire.................. 5/16 Rosemary Canavan........... 5/17

Mia Medina is 8 on May 22. Heaven Medina is 20 on May 2. Happy Birthday to Devan Simpson turning 7 on May 7. Can it be? Brittney Abell will be 33 on May 25!


May 2022 •

Michael DiStefano and Krystyna Yermachenkov will marry on May 27 at the Chapel at Seton Hall University.

Paul Guzowski (CHS 2008) and Cecelia (Cece) Roesch were married in Chicago on February 23.

Theresa Bivaletz turns 40 on May 15. She is pictured with her daughter Bexley and little niece Lyla. • May 2022


Happy Birthday to.... John Hawrylko.................. Vick Ascencio................... Jamie Antal...................... Michele D’Amico.............. Walter Hryckowian........... Mariana Pineda................ Becky Kuter...................... Jennifer Mulick.................. Julianna Smith.................. William J. Portocarrero III... Ken Bender...................... Joe Murolo....................... Matthew Palladino............ Kage Lord........................ Danica O’Brien................. Danah Alburo................... Jessica Bielen................... MaryEllen Krattinger.......... Michele Perez................... Donald Lopuzzo................ Michael Santosuosso......... Andrea Schweid............... Brittney Abell.................... Olivia Hryckowian............ Connie Paladino............... Derek Bykowsky................

5/17 5/18 5/18 5/18 5/18 5/18 5/19 5/20 5/20 5/21 5/21 5/21 5/21 5/22 5/22 5/23 5/23 5/23 5/23 5/24 5/24 5/25 5/25 5/25 5/25 5/26

Clifton Centenarians! Dr. Martin Conserva turns 100 on May 27. One of 5 brothers and 4 sisters who grew up in Botany, he became a podiatrist on Clifton Ave. Anna Maria Giaconia turned 100 on April 12. She and her late husband Joseph had 4 sons, 3 daughters who gave them 14 grandchildren and 19 great grandchildren. Alyssa Dalbo.................... 5/26 Danuta Dymora................ 5/26 Kaylee Pinter.................... 5/26 Jonathan Rideg................. 5/26 Fred Antes........................ 5/27 Kyle J. Magaster .............. 5/27 Steve Bielen...................... 5/27 David J. Ricca................... 5/28

Anthony Alcalde............... Valerie Gancarz............... Anthony DeSomma........... Rachel Gergats................. Christopher Ramirez.......... Zachary Sjosward............. Christopher Smith.............. Logan Thompson...............

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May 2022 •

5/29 5/29 5/30 5/31 5/31 5/31 5/31 5/31

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