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Clifton Merchant • November 2012


Table of Contents

What’s Inside? 6

From War to Roses Chris de Vinck Considers War & Peace


14 Frank Pinchak Pharmacist, Historian, Veteran

22 Marc Rikmenspoel WWII Historian & Author

30 George Homcy, Jack Anderson They Covered Clifton like a Blanket

38 Chamber Chief Gloria Martini Leaving a Legacy with Vets Grant


42 John Fette & Family Standing on the Shoulders of Many

50 Spencer Savings Bank Managers Take Corporate Credo Local

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Editor & Publisher Tom Hawrylko Business Manager Cheryl Hawrylko Graphic Designer Ken Peterson Staff Writer Joe Hawrylko Contributing Writers Tania Jachens, Carol Leonard, Rich DeLotto, Don Lotz, Jack DeVries

52 Clifton Rotary & Interact Club Senior & Junior Humanitarians

58 Power A Bright Future


Vote Often to Help WWMS Win

On our cover—and page 58—the Clorox Kids... WWMS students asking for your vote...Ana-Maria Prkic, Nasif Basith, Samantha Miller, Zaria Smith, Molly Herner, Kevin Scorziello, Michael Guzman, Pooja Nahar, David Carcamo, Sarah Shannon. On our cover—and on page 52—CHS junior Elizabeth Barattini asking for your coats.

60 B&GC History & Hall of Fame Alumni being Inducted on Nov. 16

72 Marguerite Heerschap Quit Scotch & Tomatoes—at 104

82 Community Events Events of Note Around Town

86 Madrigals Sing Clifton Botany, Downtown, Athenia, City Hall

90 Passaic Clifton Optimist Hot Dogs Breaking Bread before Turkey Day Clash


Student of the Month Mark Surgent at the Altar, on the Field

Halloween Parade & HarvestFest 74

Clifton Merchant • November 2012


Moments of Grace

From War to Roses EssaybyChrisdeVinck In July of 1914,duringWorld WarImygrandfather,acareer soldier in the Belgian army, was so severely wounded in his left arm that the surgeons couldn't determine if they should cut his arm off at the shoulderorattheelbow. He begged the doctors not tocutoffhisarm,andwhenhe woke up from the operation, he slowly patted his left side: shoulder,elbow‌hand. His arm was saved but, because there was no such thing as microsurgery at the time, his arm was a useless appendage hanging from his leftsidefortherestofhislife. From war to planting lilies, pansies, purple irises, and roses, beautiful white roses. During World War II my grandfather once again faced an invading army composed, this time, of Hitler's Nazi troopsinMayof1940.Mygrandfatherquicklyjoined theBelgianunderground,aresistancemovementcalled theDameBlanche,createdduringtheFirstWorldWar thatprovidedinformationandtroopmovementsto the allies and caused as much havoc for the Germantroopsaspossible. By luck, my grandfather heard that the eliteSSNazisgotwindofmygrandfather's activitiesandhefledBelgium,escapedto Spainwherehewascapturedandplaced inaprisoncampbutthenwaspartofan exchangeprogramwithEngland:gasoline forSpain;prisonersofwarforEngland. During his four years in England my grandfather broadcast encouraging words to 6 November 2012 • Clifton Merchant

hiscountry,helpedthousands of European refugees who were able to escape to England,andattheendofthe war,hewasasignificantplayer in the reconstruction of Europe having received personal awards from Gen. Dwight Eisenhower and British Gen. Bernard Montgomery. My grandfather also loved flowers. When he retired from the armyasafullgeneralhecame to America every two years with my grandmother. I was onlyaboy,aNewJerseyboy afraid of his stern look and charmedwithhisgentlesmile. Boyslikewarstories:tanks exploding, torpedoes sinking ships, but my grandfather neverspokeaboutthewars.I watchedhimplantlilies,pansies, purple irises, and roses, beautifulwhiteroses. Duringthesummerhespentmuchofhistimeweeding, creating garden borders, and loosening the earth withasmalltrowel.Irememberwatchinghimashe kneltononeknee,proppinghisdamagedarm ontohiskneeasheleanedoverandworked thesoilwithhisgoodrighthand. IspentarecentweekendwithmymotherinthehousewhereIgrewup.Sheis90 yearsold:vibrantandoptimistic. ShecontinuestoreadThe New Yorker magazine,travelbooks,novels.Shecontinuestowrite.Herpoliticalopinionsare sharpandcompletelyimmersedintheupto-date points of view. As she was




Clifton Merchant • November 2012


Moments of Grace preparingdinner,sheaskedthatIgooutintothegarden andseeifIcouldfindanylatesummerflowersleftin thegardenforthedinningroomtable. Igrabbedasmallpairofpruningsheersandstepped outintotheyard.Thereisnotmuchofagardenleft. Theappletreefellintheearly1970s.Theraspberry bushes withered away many years ago. The day lilies succumbed to the cold September air. There were no moreirises,butthere,clingingtowhatwasleftofthe rosebush,onewhiterose. I thought of the white gloves on my grandfather's handsthatIsawinmanypicturesofhiminhisgeneral's uniform.Ithoughtofhissmileandwhathedidtohelp preservefreedomforeveryoneintheworld. Ilookedatthatsingleflower:whitepetalsoverlappinglikefoldsintheoceantide,thestemwithitsstrong grip onto the flower. I thought how my grandfather

plantedthatrosebushmorethan60yearsago. Ididn’tcutofftheflower.Iletithangthereattheside ofthebushgratefulforitsexistence,preservingthelast bitofbeautyinthegardenforallseasons,preservingthe memory of what a single flower can do for the world thatstruggleseachdayforabitofpeace. Christopher de Vinck is the Language Arts Supervisor at CHS and the author of 13 books. His best known work is The Power of the Powerless a frank reflection on the struggles and joys of loving his severely disabled brother. To order his most recent work, Moments of Grace, call 1-800-218-1903 or look for it in bookstores or online.

Light a candle for one who has passed...

Annual Holiday Memorial Program

Join us Wednesday, December 5th at 7:15 pm Please join us as we open our doors to assist individuals who have experienced the death of a family member or close friend. This program is our way in our community, to let Everyone is welcomed Reservations requested,

of reaching out to families we have served, and to others them know that they are not alone this holiday season. to attend our memorial program. The program is free. but not required. Please call 973-249-6111

470 Colfax Avenue (corner of Broad St.)


www.marroccos.com 8 November 2012 • Clifton Merchant

James J. Marrocco Manager, NJ Lic No. 3320

Michael A. Waller Director

The Veterans Day Parade will start on Huron Ave. and continue up Van Houten Ave. to City Hall. This year marks the 10th anniversary of the Avenue of Flags. For info, call Chair Keith Oakley at 201-774-6666.

Salute Our Vets • Sunday Nov. 11, 2 pm

Clifton Veterans Parade East Ridgelawn Cemetery also invites you to visit our Mausoleum on Main Avenue to pause, reflect and remember the lives of those who have passed. Visits are unlimited and unaffected by the weather. Crypts are located in the building and convenient for elderly and handicapped. Mausoleum entombment provides greater Peace of Mind & Security.

East Ridgelawn Cemetery 255 Main Avenue, Clifton, NJ 07014 for more information with no obligation call:

973-777-1920 phase II near completion

• niches • mausoleum • garden graves • non-sectarian • monumental graves • no obligation pre-need counseling • financing available one-year at no interest on easy monthly plans Clifton Merchant • November 2012



Veterans Parade

Parade is November 11 at 2 pm Starts on Huron Ave. & Continues Up Van Houten Ave. to City Hall


When you come down to the Veterans Day Parade onNov.11,you’llnotonlybe honoringCliftonVets,butthosewhoserved fromacrossthenation.Oneofthepeople we’llberememberingisFrankLennon. Lennon was CHS Class of 1935 grad whowenttoLebanonCollege.Hebecame an aviation cadet with the US Army Air Corps.InJanuary,1940,theCanadiangovernment put out a call for pilots and since theUSwasnotyetengagedinwar,Lennon enlistedwiththeRoyalCanadianAirForce. While home on leave in December of 1941, the Japanese attacked Pearl Harbor. LennonwascalledtohisunitinVancouver, BCinanticipationofaninvasion.In1942, hewasassignedtotheAmericancommand andsenttotheAleutianislandstorepulsea Japanese invasion. Later that year, the Cliftonitecrashedanddiedinanoperational flightandwasburiedatFtGlenn,Alaska. Whenyouareattheparade,considerthe legacyofLt.Lennonandallothersveterans whoserved.ItisagreatCliftontraditionto honorourveteransandsupportthetroops. LearnmoreaboutFrankLennonbyvisiting www.cliftonmerchant.com. 10 November 2012 • Clifton Merchant

Clifton Merchant • November 2012


12 November 2012 • Clifton Merchant

Clifton Merchant • November 2012


Veterans & History

Pharmacist, Historian, Veteran By Joe Hawrylko

Frank Pinchak hasn’t been behind the counter at his landmark store, Pinchak Pharmacy,sincehesolditin 1988,buthislegacyofservice to the pharmaceutical industryislegendary.In fact, some of his work is preserved in the Smithsonian Institute inWashington,D.C.

14 November 2012 • Clifton Merchant

Beyond his career as a pharmacist, Pinchak, who has lived in Clifton on Fitzgerald Ave. since 1951, also served in World War II with the Army Air Corps Aviation Cadets as an aerial photo officer. His skills as an amateur photographerwerehonedinthemilitary,and Pinchak was tasked with making mapsusingimagescapturedonspy planes, as well as processing film fromB-17bombers. This job took him around the globe—literally—traveling from New York City to India, over the Himalayas into China, and then backacrossthePacificonhisreturn totheUnitedStates. But despite his worldly travels, Pinchak’s story starts at the corner Main and Knickerbocker in Paterson, where he grew up in an apartment above his family’s pharmacy. continued on page 18

Frank and Edith Pinchak in 1975 in front of their landmark pharmacy at Main and Knickerbocker Aves., just past Crooks Ave. in Paterson

Clifton Merchant • November 2012


There are about 12,000 podiatrists in the United States, according to the Department of Labor, and Clifton podiatrist Thomas Graziano is one of only six who hold both a Doctor of Podiatric Medicine (D.P.M.) and a Doctor of Medicine (M.D.) degree.



16 November 2012 • Clifton Merchant

As a foot and ankle specialist, my main goal for all my patients is to find caring solutions that last a lifetime. I won't just treat the symptom; I'll strive to correct the problem... Permanently. When you combine effective treatments with my genuine concern for your well-being, that's a powerful combination. -Thomas A. Graziano, MD, DPM, FACFAS GOUT TOE Feeling like your big toe is about to explode? Gout can be an extremely uncomfortable pain in the toe. It most often attacks the joint of the “Great Toe” although other joints could be affected. Photos here are of a mass which Dr. Graziano removed, illustrating how the healing begins.

ScheduleyoursurgeryatCliftonSurgeryCenter. Wearea threeroomstateoftheart,nationallyaccredited,physician owned facility.   Smaller and more service oriented than hospitals,patientsandtheir families benefit from the convenienceandlowercost. PODIATRY ThomasGraziano,DPM,MD 1033Clifton,Ave. Clifton,NJ07013 973-473-3344 JeffreyMiller,DPM 1117Route46East,2ndFloor Clifton,NJ07013 973-365-2208 EugeneA.Batelli,DPM 1117Route46East,2ndFloor Clifton,NJ07013 973-365-2208 ZinaCappiello,DPM 886PomptonAve,SuiteA-1 CedarGrove,NJ07009 973-857-1184 GlennHaber,DPM 140GrandAve. Englewood,NJ07631 201-569-0212

Call your physician about scheduling your surgery at Clifton Surgery Center. MatthewWelch,DPM 6506ParkAve. WestNewYork,NJ07093 201-662-1122 AnasKhoury,DPM 235MainAve. Passaic,NJ07066 973-473-6665

PAIN MANAGEMENT LadislavHabina,MD 1117Route46East,2ndFloor Clifton,NJ07013 973-357-8228 KazimierzSzczech,MD 1033CliftonAve. Clifton,NJ07013 973-473-4400

JohnMcEvoy,DPM 152LakeviewAve. Clifton,NJ07013 973-340-8970

BinodSinha,MD 1117Route46East,2ndFloor Clifton,NJ07013 973-777-5444

KevinHealey,DPM 152LakeviewAve. Clifton,NJ07013 973-340-8970

ToddKoppel,MD 721CliftonAve. Clifton,NJ07013 973-473-5752



PiotrHuskowski,MD 1005CliftonAve. Clifton,NJ07013

DanielRice,MD 1001Clifton,Ave. Clifton,NJ07013 973-779-7231


CHIROPRACTIC MichaelGaccione,DC 26ClintonSt. Newark,NJ07012 973-624-4000 TerryMcSweeney,DC 600MountProspectAve. Newark,NJ07104 973-485-2332

ENT StephenAbrams,MD 1070CliftonAve. Clifton,NJ07013 973-773-9880

ORTHOPEDICS KentLerner,MD 17JaunceyAve. NorthArlington,NJ07031 201-991-9019

OPHTHALMOLOGY CharlesCrowley,MD 1033CliftonAve. Clifton,NJ07013 973-472-6405

GENERAL SURGERY KevinBuckley,MD 1100CliftonAve. Clifton,NJ07013 973-778-0100 EdwinKane,MD 1100CliftonAve. Clifton,NJ07013 973-778-0100 RamonSilen,MD 1117Route46East,Suite301 Clifton,NJ07013 973-779-4242

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Dr. Eugene A. Batelli, DPM

Dr. Terry McSweeney

Dr. Thomas Graziano, DPM, MD

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Clifton Merchant • November 2012


Veterans & History Pictured here are two examples of some of the posters created by Pinchak used nationally by pharmacists.

“I grew up in Paterson, a block away from Crooks Ave.Myfather,Morris,hadadrugstore.Hestartedit in1919anditclosedupin1998,”saidPinchak,90. Inhisteens,Pinchakregisteredforthedraftandfully expectedtobesenttowar.Butratherthanallowhisfate tobedecided,hechosetoenlistintheArmyAirCorps Aviation Cadets in October of 1942 while studying at RutgersCollegeofPharmacyinNewark. “Anybodywhowasincollegewasdeferred,dependingonwhatyourcoursewas:pharmacy,medicine,engineers, law school,” explained Pinchak.  “A couple of guysthatknewIwasintophotographytoldmeaboutthe AviationCadetsthatyoucantryoutforit.Andthenthey saidthatthey’dletmefinishcollegeandIsaidokandwe allwentdowntotheNewarkArmory.” PinchakenlistedinOctoberof1942,andwasgivena full year to complete his studies before joining the AviationCadets.InOctoberof1943,hegraduatedfrom RutgersCollegeofPharmacyinNewark. “Thatmonth,thetelephonerangatthepharmacyone day and they said, ‘Welcome to the Army,’” laughed Pinchak.Atthattime,theAviationCadetswereapartof theArmyAirCorps,sincetheAirForcewasnotyetan independentbranchoftheUSMilitary. Pinchak was commissioned in 1944 in Sioux City, IowaandthenwassenttoDyersburg,Tennessee.Hewas assignedtothe21stReconnoissanceSquad,whichwas attached to the 23rd Fighter Group.  At both bases, PinchakworkedwithB-17crews,trainingpilotstoread themapsthathewouldproduceusingphotostakenfrom reconnoissanceplanes. Inadditiontomapmaking,Pinchakandotheraerial 18 November 2012 • Clifton Merchant

photoofficersweretaskedwithmaintainingthecameras ontheB-17gunsandbombbaydoors.Thesecameras wereusedtorefinetheskillsoftheB-17crews. “Everymachinegunhada16mmcameraonit.Our crewswouldpickupthefilmfromthephotolabinthe morningandtheywouldgoontheirmissions,shoottheir bullets and gave us the film,” explained Pinchak. “Duringthenightwewouldprocess30,000feetoffilm andthenextdaythecrewwouldgotoaroomwithan instructorwhowasareturngunner.” “We also did training of foreign pilots too. Turkish pilots,Asianpilots,”headded. Inthewaningdaysofthewarinthesummerof1945, PinchakreceivedorderstoshipouttoChina. “FirsttheysentmetoIndia.Itwasa30daytripona troop transport from NewYork City, through the Atlantic,throughGibraltarandthentheSuezCanal,the Red Sea, the Gulf of Oden and then down around the bottomofIndiaanduptoCalcutta,”herecalled.“Iwas thereforabouttwoorthreeweeksandthenweflewThe Hump(whattroopscalledtheHimalayas).Welandedin Kunming,China.ThatwastheterminusfortheBurma RoadandalsoforTheHump.” “SoI’monthiswholebigtripandtheydroppedthe atom bomb,” Pinchak continued.  “We were going to invadeJapanandweweregoingtobethereplacements forpeopleovertwo,three,fouryearsagoalready.” Despite the armistice, the 21st remained in China doing reconnoissance work with spy planes.

Tues. Nov. 6 Vote Row-A

Paid for by PCDC & Pascrell for Congress

Clifton Merchant • November 2012


Veterans & History

The Pinchak family in 1997. Seated from left: Gale Pinchak Silverstein, Gale Irwin Pinchak and Frank P. Pinchak. Standing: Jeffrey Silverstein, and Edith and Frank Pinchak.

Passaic County Pharmacists PinchakwasincountryforapproxiAssociation,servinguntil1955. matelyfivemonths. “DuringthetimeIwasPresident, “We were doing CIA work in a wehadakidgrabaholdofabottle way.  We were mapping countries ofaspirinanddieaweeklater.We that I can’t name in Asia for any alsohadafatherthatneededabottle future conflict,” he said.   “We foraurinesample,sohepouredoil wouldsendtenplanesoutatatime of wintergreen into a Coke bottle eachwithoverlapabout40percent andthekidswalloweditanddied,” sideways.  We would send those he recalled.  “So I said  lets put a guysoutforaboutfivehoursandall posterineverydrugstoreinPassaic thatstuffwentbacktoWashington. County—125 stores in total—Save All I know is we had a lot of film your child, keep medicine out of andalotofpaperandtheysaiduse reach, safe storing saves lives.” itall.” Not long after the signs were After returning home from releasedinPassaicCountyin1954, China, Pinchak was sent to Shaw pharmacy trade journals picked up Fields in Sumpter, SouthCarolina. on the concept and it began to HebrieflyworkedinanArmyhosbecomepopularacrossthecountry. pital before being discharged in Four years later in 1958, Pinchak Aprilof1946asasecondlieutenant. was named President of the State Upon returning to Paterson, PharmacyAssociationandserveda Pinchak resumed his career in the oneyearterminthatcapacity. familypharmacy.Hebecamemore “LouBowser,hehadadrugstore active in the emerging field and in inEastOrange,andIgothimtogo 1954,hewasnamedPresidentofthe 20 November 2012 • Clifton Merchant

aroundtohospitalsinthestateand put poison control centers in each hospital,”Pinchakrecalled.“Inless than a year, he’s got 27 hospitals doingthis.” Eventuallythegovernmentdetermined that their efforts overlapped withtheState’sandconsolidatedall branches into one central poison controlcenterinNewark. Years later in 1989, Pinchak’s effortsindevelopingandcirculating the posters was recognized by the Smithsonian Institution, which put the original work on display at its Washington,D.C.museum. Pinchak also has an exhibit on displayatthePatersonMuseum.As the owner of a pharmacy for many years, Pinchak collected antique medicalitems, “Mymother-in-lawtoldmedon’t throw out anything,” he recalled addingthathefollowedheradvice. Pinchak sold the store in 1988 and retired, and it later closed for good in 1998.  “She was a picker for antique dealers.  By the time I had retired, I had put up shelves in the garageandthemuseumheardabout it.Therewereallsortsofoldpatentedmedicinesandotheritems.” In1996,DirectorJackDeStefano extended an offer for Pinchak to haveadisplayofhis700itemsfor three months at the Paterson Museum.  That three month stint was extended due to high interest, and at the end of that term, DeStefanomadePinchak’sexhibita permanentpartofthemuseum’scollection. The Cliftonite’s historic items havebeenloanedouttootherlocal museums,andoften,atage91,heis still  giving talks about his antique medicalsupplies.

Clifton Merchant • November 2012


Veterans & History

WWII Historian & Author Marc Rikmenspoel is an Expert on the Waffen-SS and the Eastern Front By Joe Hawrylko Marc Rikmenspoel remembers first becoming interested in World War II as a young boy after finding some of his father’s books in a closet. Years later, the native of Albany, NY is now an author himself, having penned two books and contributed to several others. “I still remember the day I looked through that. I was about seven years old and I was bored one afternoon because my parents went out and left me with a babysitter that I probably didn’t like all that much,” laughed the 42 year old. Rikmenspoel’s father was from The Netherlands, and had lived through the German occupation and collected material about the war. As a teenager growing up in Albany, NY, Rikmenspoel started to form his own collection of WWII history books. “In the 70s and early 80s, you could find a lot of WWII paperbacks in new or used copies at a very cheap price when compared with today,” he explained. Rikmenspoel’s interest in World War II and history led him to Colorado State, where he graduated with a Bachelor’s in History in 1992. Marc Rikmenspoel at his job at FedEx After graduation, Rikmenspoel on Rt. 3. and the cover of the Waffenworked as a freelance writer for a SS Encyclopedia, his second book. couple of publications, but his main history,” he said. “I had a fortunate interest was having a book about opportunity in 1995 when I started World War II history published. acquiring WWII photographs, so it “I had done writing ever since I was obvious to me to start assemwas old enough to write essentially. bling that into a book and eventualAnd I always wanted to make my ly, multiple books.” own contributions to the study of 22 November 2012 • Clifton Merchant

Clifton Merchant • November 2012


Veterans & History “After buying many books over the years—this was time before the internet—I used to talk to some of the book dealers and publishers. It’s really not that big of a field for specialized military history books, so I got to know people in the industry,” Rikmenspoel continued.

24 November 2012 • Clifton Merchant

“I met a man in South Dakota who used to be in the US Army. He knew German vets and he built up material over the years but he became depressed because many of those vets were his personal friends. As the vets all started to die off, the material started to lose some of the

joy and I bought it in bits and pieces through 1997.” After reaching out to one of his publishing contacts, Rikmenspoel got the green light and put together Soldiers of the Waffen-SS: Many Nations, One Motto, which was a photobook of the many different nations that made up that branch of the German military. Rikmenspoel decided to focus on the Waffen-SS because of the material available to him, and due to the unique ethnic make up of that group. “The political and social aspects in the historical sense, for someone who has an appreciation of history, there are so many things that come together on such a massive scale,” he said. “It’s interesting for me to study the lesser people that are harder to find information on. What brought all these people together? What brought Latvians and Norwegians and the Dutch all together in the Germany military, fighting against the Soviet Union? It’s an intensely complex subject.” From a military perspective, the Eastern Front between Germany and the Soviets also interested Rikmenspoel. “It is essentially the largest military campaign in history in several different ways. It was the largest front of fighting ever. At one point it stretched from the Arctic to the Caucasuses,” he explained. “It was also supposedly Germans against the Russians, but it really wasn’t. The Axis had Finns, who were in an informal alliance with Germany. There were Romanians, Hungarians and Italians, who were all in alliance. And there were smaller nations and contingents like

Clifton Merchant • November 2012


Veterans & History Croatia, Slovakia and volunteers from all over Europe.” “There was even a Spanish division in the German Army,” Rikmenspoel added. “People from all over the Soviet Union ended up as German prisoners and fought. The Soviet Union, people think of Russians and maybe Ukrainians second... but there was also Chechnyans trying to assert their independence, Georgians... some occupied parts of Caucasus and

sometimes Balkan states, people voluntarily joined. In some ways, it was a second Russian civil war.” After his first book was well received, Rikmenspoel connected with another publisher, who had a contract with the US Military Book Club. He was contracted to do a second book for the club, Waffen-SS Encyclopedia, which was a text based publication. A total of 8,000 copies were printed for the book club in 2002, and about two years


You can be on our front page. Call Tom Hawrylko for Info.

973-253-4400 26 November 2012 • Clifton Merchant

later, it was released to the general public. “If you look on Amazon there are two versions of it,” he said. The encyclopedia took about six months of wring. “It was something that I studied a lot anyway for my own enjoyment.” Through his various contacts in the publishing industry, Rikmenspoel has worked on several other projects as a co-author and editor. His ability to speak and read some Spanish, French and German has opened up several opportunities. “I can’t read German poetry. It goes right over my head,” he said. Rikmenspoel was self taught after years of studying German history. He learned Spanish in college. “But I can read a German war diary.” Rikmenspoel’s French abilities were put to the test when he was named co-author for For Rex and For Belgium: Le'on Degrelle and Walloon Political and Military Collaboration 1940-45, translating the manuscript into English and making some edits, in addition to adding some material. “He had assembled his own English manuscript but wanted a native English speaker to go through it and edit it. He wanted a little help with it and wanted someone who knew the publishing field to find a good publisher,” recalled Rikmenspoel. The book is now out of print but is available as an Ebook. That was in 2004. Rikmenspoel also served as a technical editor on The Good Soldier by Alfred Novotny, who was a soldier in an elite Germany army tank unit. Rikmenspoel worked with Novotny to rewrite his

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Veterans & History memoir, which has previously been self published. Rikmenspoel also worked on East Front Drama 1944, published by Fedorowicz publishing. Rikmenspoel was given the manuscript, which was originally penned in German, and was tasked with making it more readable in English. Now living in Nutley, Rikmenspoel is currently a manager at FedEx on Rt. 3 by day. However, he is still very much involved in writing. Currently, Rikmenspoel is assembling a two volume photographic set for Fedorowicz Publishing, whom he has done editing work for in the past. “I’m fortunate that I have a good reputation in this limited field as somebody who knows his stuff and someone who will produce a good book. And they know I’ll actually produce,” he said. “This one is about Western European volunteers in the Waffen SS. Danes, Norwegians, Dutch, Flemmish and similar people. The working title is currently Sunwheels and Fiegrunen. “I started it in the Spring of 2011 and I expect to finish work on the volume at the end of this year, with publishing for 2013 or 2014. And then I will be working on the second volume next year.” Rikmenspoel has been developing the collection

28 November 2012 • Clifton Merchant

thanks to donations from acquaintances and friends in Europe, as well as by using the US National Archives. He plans to organize his upcoming books by photographer. “The Waffen SS has combat photographers. They’d take their negatives and they prepared a sort of index print of their many negatives that they called a contact sheet,” he said. The negatives did not survive the war but index and contact sheets did. “The mass of them are in the German National Archives, but the US National Archives has a large batch of them. It’s possible to take these and scan them at high resolution.” In the Spring of 2011, Rikmenspoel scanned more than 900 photos in just three days. He plans to have more than 1,500 photos between the two volumes. “It’s going to be organized by photographers. I’ve been specializing in studying the photographers. There’s some archive material that lists various photographers and their assignments,” he said. “If you have a photograph by X it obviously shows unit Y. No one before has studied the photographers to this extent. It’s going to have photos with very detailed captions. It should be the best reference in photographs for the Western European volunteers in the Waffen SS.”

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Veterans & History

Veteran Journalists Covered Clifton Like A Blanket By Jack De Vries

On December 7, 1941, high school senior Jack Anderson was in the original Herald & News building, then on Prospect St. in Passaic, mixing chemicals in the darkroom for photographer George Holm. “Bells and whistles started going off in the wire room,” Anderson remembered in an interview in 2000. “I asked someone what it was, and they told me that happened whenever a special story was coming over. Soon, there was a constant stream of information coming over the wire. It made quite an impression on me. By that winter, most of the young men I knew were in the service.” Anderson, who died in 2008 at the age of 83, would soon join them. “I volunteered for Navy because I wanted to fly and joined V-5 program,” he says. “I got my 30 November 2012 • Clifton Merchant

wings in Pensacola, Fla., then flew on a North Atlantic sub patrol near end of war. I never saw any combat—I didn’t shoot at anybody and nobody shot at me. As the war ended, I was being transferred for duty in the Pacific.” The war also impacted the life of George Homcy. “During WWII,” says Homcy, just 12 when the war broke out, “I was a voracious reader of newspapers. I read anything about war. I even kept a map on my room’s wall and plotted the war—the battles, the Allied victories. I’d clip out pictures of battle ships, German field marshals, English and American generals, and I’d keep a scrapbook. “That’s how I developed my interest in news. It’s funny that I later became a wordsmith. In high school, I was not the greatest English student.”

WWII shaped both men’s lives. It kindled a thirst for reporting in Homcy and helped light a passion for documenting the news in pictures for Anderson. Starting in the 1950s, the two would come back to this area and report the story of Clifton (and many other towns) for the area’s leading newspaper, the Herald & News. “I was fascinated with photography as a boy,” says Anderson, who was born in 1924 near Passaic High School. “My first camera was a $1 box camera. When I was a teenager, I went into Dolan Studios in Passaic and asked to be an apprentice. The man who owned the studio said he couldn’t afford to pay me, but I wanted to learn and offered to work for nothing. “I started by taking passport photos and soon was taking wedding pictures. I worked there the entire summer. By summer’s end, the owner took a week vacation and left me, just a teenager, running the studio.” Photography became Anderson’s passion. Along with working on the school newspaper, The Hilltopper, he landed a job with the Herald & News, working before and after school. Prior to joining the Navy, he had worked his way up to freelance photographer. “After the service,” Anderson says, “I came back and the paper wanted me to go into the advertising department. I said no. Instead, I went to work at Curtiss-Wright, testing airplane engines because I’d been a pilot.” But photography was something Anderson couldn’t get out of his blood. He began

In 1951 George Homcy was a broadcaster for Armed Forces Network—AFN. Above, he and the late Jack Anderson (at left) pictured above in 2000, both served in the military and went on to have storied careers at the Herald & News. Homcy also served as the executive director of the North Jersey Regional Chamber of Commerce for 28 years, retiring in 2002.

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Veterans & History

In 1963 on Dundee Lake, George Homcy (from left), Clifton Municipal Court Judge John A. Celentano and Councilman William Sellinger. The purpose of the row boat excursion was to prove that the lake section was shallow and would be an appropriate location for Route 21. The highway was constructed and elevated over that area—some four decades later.

doing public relations work for Farleigh Dickinson University and assisted them with photos for their school yearbook. He worked in these positions from 1951 to 1957. In 1958, he began working at his true calling—photographer for the Herald & News. George Homcy followed a similar path. He grew up on Main Ave. opposite Clifton Memorial Park—the same house where noted Clifton businessman Terry LaCorte would also grow up. Homcy’s father owned a silk mill. But, times were tough during the 1930s, and the elder Homcy lost the mill near the end of the Depression. The family sold the house in 1940 and moved to South Paterson. “I did not go to college,” says Homcy, who today is 83. “When I graduated from Central High School, my family was in such tough financial shape that I decided to go to work. In February 1948, a friend told me to go up and see Eddie Haines at the Paterson News because they were looking for somebody. “I became keeper of the paper’s morgue, filing clippings up on the second floor of the old Paterson News building on Ellison St.— what a dungeon that morgue was.” 32 November 2012 • Clifton Merchant

Homcy then started working for sportswriter Joe Gooter. “Joe was a real character,” he says. “I can still remember him saying in that gravely voice of his, ‘Get me a scrambled egg on a hard roll.’ Soon, I was covering sports on my own. I started writing about Central High games, Diamond Gloves boxing, golf, and tennis—which I knew nothing about. It was a lot of fun.” Another assignment Homcy got was covering the Paterson Crescents basketball team from 1948 to 1951. “I’d ride along with the team’s owner, Jess Weiner,” he says, “and we’d travel to Scranton, Philadelphia, Bridgeport, and Wilkes-Barre for road games.” With the outbreak of the Korean War, Homcy was drafted into army in 1951. After going through basic training, he was assigned to the “AFN” with friend and fellow writer John Keel. The assignment turned out to be one of the army’s best, as AFN stood for “Armed Forces Network.” During his 20-month tour, Homcy and Keel were headquartered in the 900-year-old Von Bruening castle that overlooked the Rhine—“military but plush,” is how he describes it. “AFN was one of the most powerful radio outlets in the world back in those days. We were a half-million

watt station. The stations today, like WABC-AM, are limited to 50,000 watts. We were heard behind the Iron Curtain, in North Africa, and halfway out into the Atlantic.” Because he had gained much experience writing and doing newscasts for the AFN, when Homcy returned to the states, he contacted New York and New Jersey radio stations about a job. He was told he needed “commercial broadcasting experience” and received only one offer from a New Brunswick station. Now living in Clifton and not wanting to move, Homcy turned it down. The Herald & News was waiting. Both men thrived in their jobs at the Herald & News. Anderson again worked as a freelance photographer, making $40 for every ten photo assignments, $5 for every extra one. Homcy started as a $65 a week reporter—the paper beating the $50 offer he got from the Paterson News. “We had a lot of fun,” says Homcy. “I worked with a lot of great people—Al Smith, Art McMahon, Joe Lovas, and the publisher, Dick Drukker, a fair man and wonderful guy, as is his son Austin. There were great reporters, like Maurice “Mickey” Carroll, who now runs the Quinnipiac College Poll, Gordon Bishop, John

Reilly, and Ford Baker. Other great ones included Art Lenihan, Leslie Davis, Boley Schwartz, and Kent MacDougal, who went on to work for the Los Angeles Times. “We covered Clifton like a blanket. We were on call 24 hours a day. I had a good deal—I’d go in from 6 am to 1 pm, get the final edition out, then go home or go down to the Y. Then we went back to work at night. We covered every board meeting—planning boards, board of adjustment, board of education, and the city council. “Nobody assigned us to cover these events—as reporters, we knew it was our responsibility to do so.” Anderson also loved his new life. “We had three photographers when I joined the paper,” he says, “Roger “Flash” Terhune, Tommy Lynch, and myself. They worked 7 am to 3 pm and 3 pm to 11 pm I worked 3-11 and weekends, and was off Mondays and Tuesdays.” But, because of their jobs as newsmen, readers thought they worked round the clock. “People had our home phone numbers, and they would call us—even at 3 am—to let us know about a story,” says Anderson. “One night, Roger Terhune heard a tremendous crash near his house, grabbed his camera, and ran out in his bathrobe to take pictures

Clifton Merchant • November 2012


Veterans & History

George Homcy running down a story near Nash Park with Dr. Irving Silverman.

34 November 2012 • Clifton Merchant

of the accident. He ended up directing traffic at the scene.” Anderson also assisted the police departments on many occasions. “I’d be at a crime scene, and they wouldn’t be able to locate the one person who could work their camera—so I’d end up taking the shot of uncovered bodies and giving the prints to the police. Of course, those pictures never ran in the paper.” The Herald & News covered fires, fatal accidents— anything making news in the town. Anderson says this aggressive approach was typical of the paper’s executive editor, Al Smith “Allen W. Smith was the paper, and he wanted us to follow up on every lead,” Anderson explains of his boss who retired in the late 1960s. “If fire engines or police cars went flying past with sirens blaring and lights flashing, Smitty knew thousands of people were seeing that, and he wanted the paper to tell that story. His philosophy was to anticipate people’s questions and answer them in our paper.” During much of Anderson’s tenure, the Herald & News produced three main editions and nine editions, covering the Paterson, Passaic, and Clifton, much

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Clifton Merchant • November 2012


Veterans & History After leaving the paper, Homcy started a new career of Bergen County and a rim of Essex County. Smith, with the Clifton Chamber of Commerce which became who played a few seasons for the Passaic Wonder Team the North Jersey Regional Chamber of Commerce. He in the 1920s, presided over it all, reading every word retired in 2002 having served for 28 years as executive that went into the paper. director. “Smitty liked me,” says Homcy, “and we got along Anderson was proud of many things during his 18famously.” Anderson also has a soft spot for his old year tenure with the boss, and can laugh paper that ended in now about how Smith 1986. He loved dealt with salaries. sports, especially the “When he gave you a football Giants for raise, he’d say, ‘Don’t sports editor Augie say anything about Lio, and enjoyed takthis to anybody.’” ing pictures at high “We worked for school games, somepeanuts,” says Homcy, times running “but we loved it. I got between six different invited to so many contests. cocktail parties and Another memory dinners, and met so for Anderson was takmany people, that it ing a photo of Pope was worth it.” John Paul II, then a “My camera was cardinal, when he visalways invited everyited St. Mary’s where I went,” says Hospital in Passaic. Anderson. “I just But he also values the went along with it.” many 50th anniverWhile both men sary photos and first loved their jobs, they baby of the year shots. also felt a deep sense “The association of pride for their craft with people was what and the paper they I liked best about my represented. job,” Anderson said. “Most of the “When I worked, I reporters I worked represented the with were loyal to the George Homcy and Henry Fette at Clifton’s Jubilee parade in 1967. Herald & News. paper,” states Homcy, That’s why I maintained my own dress standards. who retired from the Herald & News in 1973 after 20 Another thing I did was to give people the prints from years. “They cared about the people they wrote about, the stories we ran when we were done with them. Those as I did. I loved writing about Clifton and covering the pictures were important to them. Why put them in a file local elections.” to throw out a year later?” “One of my proudest accomplishments was that, What was important to the people who read the during the 15 years I wrote about Clifton, I avoided getting sued for libel—without even a threat of a suit. I Herald & News during Homcy and Anderson’s time always prided myself in checking facts, and, even were the contributions of both men, who captured the though I wrote some unflattering things about some story of the city’s life, making it live in their paper people, I guess I was fair.” each day. 36 November 2012 • Clifton Merchant


Clifton Merchant • November 2012


NJRCC Awards

Leaving a Lasting Legacy Gloria Martini Will Step Down as NJRCC President on Dec. 31 By Joe Hawrylko

Bob Jaffe, President of the NJRCC Foundation, Fernando Sanchez, the first recipient of the Lebert Grant, Christine Lebert and her sister, Victoria, and Gloria Martini. The Leberts funded the program in honor of their late father, Jack.

In the ten years that she has served as President of the North Jersey Regional Chamber of Commerce, Gloria Martini has directed many innovative changes to benefit the business advocacy group. But before she retires on Dec. 31, Martini is proud that she will have established one last precedent: a grant for returning veterans to attend college. This year’s award went to Army veteran Fernando Sanchez, who served in Iraq and now attends William Paterson University. “For the first time, we gave a scholarship to a returning veteran. They had to be someone who served in Iraq or Afghanistan. We gave them a $5,000 grant to help,” she explained. “The NJRCC Foundation has been giving scholarships for the last 16 years. That foundation is an affiliate of the Chamber. We also give scholarships to 38 November 2012 • Clifton Merchant

local high school students and also to students in the four area colleges who are pursuing a career in business.” With over 500 member businesses, the Chamber of Commerce provides numerous services, including networking opportunities, seminars, scholarships and much more. The group thrives on the generosity of its members, who comprise the board, volunteer time and donate money for many causes. Martini joined a decade ago after a lengthy career in communications and public relations with pharmaceutical giants Novartis and Ciba-Geigy. She was quickly impressed with what the Chamber is able to accomplish with the help of its members. “We’re a small staff. There’s only three of us on staff. Everything else is done with the help of volun-

Clifton Merchant • November 2012


NJRCC Awards that’s been really important the last few teers,” she said. “All the local business people give years because people are not going to time to help plan events, serve on the executive higher end restaurants as much.” committee to help set our goals so we are as successful Another major event added as we are able to harness the power of those volunteers.” under Martini’s tenure was the “I was not used to working with Star Gala, which is now in its sevvolunteers. In the corporate world, people did their job, got “At the Chamber, I didn’t enth year. This year’s event will be held on Dec. 6 at the paid and went home,” Martini think (being the first female Westmount Country Club. continued. “Working with volun“We realized that so many teers, it surprised me how much President) was a challenge. members had been with us for so people donate time and money to My first job out of college long,” explained Martini. “Fette things that they truly do believe in. It’s rewarding. It’s part of workwas with the US Food and has been a member of our chamber for 60 years. Spencer Savings ing at the chamber that sometimes Drug Administration. I was has been with us for many years. goes unnoticed.” Over her decade long tenure, one of the first women that Roche, they’ve been there for over 60 years. They each provide Martini and her staff have put they had hired.” financial support. Their persontogether several new initiatives. nel sit on the committee and they But the biggest challenge in the past help plan events. They allow us do the things we’re ten years was helping businesses survive the recession. able to do.” “Just helping them navigate through such a difficult Martini, who was the Chamber’s first female presieconomic climate and providing services so that they can dent, has also worked hard to include more women be more successful. The economy is slowly beginning to members and executives. improve but the goal was just really to help them make “At the Chamber, I didn’t think (being the first female it through,” explained Martini. The Chamber provided President) was a challenge. My first job out of college help in the form of additional networking opportunities, was with the US Food and Drug Administration. I was educational seminars, information about HR regulations, one of the first women that they had hired,” said Martini. legal advice, among other things. “Businesses were “I did work hard to get more women on board and onto looking to our organization for more support to help our executive committee.” them. We really had to focus more on our services that The President’s most lasting change might just be the can help people be more successful.” inclusion of more women and more young professionals. “We also offer more marketing opportunities through The newer members have helped keep membership the Chamber. There’s free advertising on the website. steady and are active in helping plan events. We also encourage more member to member discounts “Finding volunteers hasn’t been a problem until this so that they support each other,” she continued. “The year. Businesses have slowly cut back thinking I can do Chamber also works with the Passaic County the same thing with fewer people,” explained Martini. Department of Economic Development to host seminars “Now a lot are down to the bone.” for funding, navigating the banking industry for loans “We had 200 or 300 people at our Oktoberfest event and other related information.” (Oct. 24). The comedy night, that also started the last Some events benefit specific segments of the business few years and that has attracted a lot of the younger community, such as the annual food festival, which takes members,” explained Martini. Many of these younger place in March at the Preakness Hills Country Club in Wayne and features 20 to 30 restaurants. members have turned into valuable members. “They “It’s another event that we have really grown over the bring a whole new energy. If you look at where the last few years is the annual food festival,” said Martini. chamber is going in the future, they’re going to be the “This is a chance to really promote our restaurants and future business leaders.” 40 November 2012 • Clifton Merchant

Clifton Merchant • November 2012


NJRCC Awards

Standing on the Shoulders of Family & Employees By Tom Hawrylko

John Fette at right depends upon Chris Ciresi and Pat Murray to keep things running smoothly at his family dealership.

John Fette is not one for grand speeches. So in anticipation of what the president of Fette Ford, Kia & Infiniti would say when he accepts the Star Gala Award from the North Jersey Regional Chamber of Commerce on Dec. 6, we asked how his firm got to this place. “Really, it’s about my dad and HF,” said Fette, a third generation business owner. He pondered for a moment and explained. “Henry and Larry did it. They got me to this point. I’m growing it. Continuing it. I’m honored to be here. But it’s not about me. There’s Kristin, my wife. Chris Ciresi and Pat Murray. I am standing on the shoulders of many giants. I mean that.” 42 November 2012 • Clifton Merchant

HF refers to grandfather and patriarch Henry Fette. A showman extraordinaire, HF was the guy who in 1952 founded Fette Ford and essentially put the Fette nameplate on thousands of vehicles since. During Clifton’s post-war growth years, HF beat the band to do what was right for Clifton. The firm is a 60 year member of the Chamber, beginning with HF as president of the Clifton Chamber of Commerce and organizations such as Kiwanis and local banks. Active with the Boys & Girls Club—his grandson in on that board today—he was also the grand marshall of Clifton’s 50th Anniversary Parade.

Clifton Merchant • November 2012


NJRCC Awards In the early 1950’s, Fette was lead fundraiser for the Clifton Memorial Library, which opened on Jan. 31, 1953. In 1990, when the Piaget Ave. facility was being rebuilt, Fette gave a personal donation to establish the Clifton history room. Henry Fette died at the age of 96 on August 7, 2001. “I worked with him since I was in high school,” said Larry Fette upon his father’s passing. “He was a good father and a good friend.” Larry, CHS Class of 1954 and Rutgers Class of 1959, joined the firm full-time after graduation. He learned much about the business from his dad. “Like my father always said, customers come first, then employees, and last, the owners. We pride ourselves on good customer service.” Sadly, just seven years later on May 9, 2008, Larry Fette passed away at the age of 71. He succeeded his father and ultimately passed the business along to his son, John, keeping the business in the family for a third generation. Like his father a true Clifton booster and involved in many community causes, Larry left behind his wife Nancy, four daughters, his son John, 13 grandchildren, two sisters and a brother.

Founder Henry Fette, at right, with a customer circa 1965.

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NJRCC Awards Started in 1952, first as an auto part supplier than as a dealer on Main and Madison Aves., the name Fette became synonymous with the Ford brand. With a growing reputation and banking on America’s love affair with motoring, Fette in 1954 moved the dealership to Allwood Ave., near the Allwood Circle. As the business grew, Fette knew that he would need more space to display an ever-expanding line of cars. While the shop at the Allwood Circle served them well, Fette knew they need a location with higher visibility. In the mid 1970’s, HF contacted the owners of the landmark, state-of-the-art bowling lanes, Bowlero, to see if they could make a deal. The owners were based out of state, and yes, they were interested in selling the property at the intersection of Routes 3 and 46. Soon, the Fettes were designing their dream dealership, all the while still maintaining the current business. Henry Fette hired Clifton architect Arthur Rigolo to design a new showroom in the huge space vacated by Bowlero. Construction began in June of 1976 and was completed in July, 1977. “It was a lot of work and my father was there overseeing the project every day,” Larry Fette recalled years ago. “Construction actually ran pretty smoothly, except that it was the coldest winter. Pipes froze and leaked in the spring, which slowed us down a bit.” Taking apart a landmark bowling center resulted in numerous stories. Bar equipment was donated to the old Knights of Columbus Hall in Downtown Clifton. A man came in to rip up the 50 lanes and used the lumber to build a restaurant. Bowling balls, shoes and various equipment mysteriously disappeared. The bowling alley had a restaurant called House of Lam with a liquor license. Henry Fette transferred the license to what’s now Chengdu 46. 46 November 2012 • Clifton Merchant

Main and Madison Aves. was at the center of it all in 1952 when Henry Fette established his automotive business there. The building is now the home of Clifton Electrical Supply. Prior to that, Fette had an auto supply store on Main (below). By 1954, Fette moved near the Allwood Circle, where the Auto Zone store is today. Fette Ford & Kia moved to the firm’s current location, at the intersection of Routes 46 and 3, in 1977.

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NJRCC Awards Fette Ford, a landmark at the intersection of Routes 3 and 46, has become a business that in many ways has put Clifton on the map. Under Larry’s leadership, the franchise mix expanded with Isuzu, Subaru, and Kia. Since 2008 with John at the helm, the line up includes Ford, Kia and Infiniti. John joined the business full time after college in 1986, learning the business from service to management. John married Kristin Marie (Hart) of Michigan and this year they celebrated their 25th anniversary. Kristin and John have two sons, Dan and Hart, sophomores in college. John is on the board of the Boys & Girls Club of Clifton and supports other community causes. His professional affiliations include being on the boards of Ford’s Tri-State Advertising Association, NADA’s Dealer Election Action Committee, Kia’s National Dealer Council, and services as a trustee of the NJ CAR Association in Trenton. With the new Infiniti showroom and service center almost complete, John recalled this is the second construction project he has overseen. In 2005, John managed a renovation and expansion of their main building—the one his dad and grandfather designed in 1976. “That’s what I mean about standing on shoulders,” said John. “My family, my employees, they keep this place focused on our customers. We all share in this award.”

Larry, with his wife of 50 years, Nancy, circa 1980.

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NJRCC Awards

Spencer Savings Bank Clifton Branch Managers Bring Corporate Credo to Local Level Spencer Savings Banks has been a cornerstone in its communities supporting its local businesses and causes for more than a century. On Dec. 6 at the Westmount Country Club, the management team of the bank, which has two branches in Clifton, will be honored for this service with the Star Gala Award presented by the North Jersey Regional Chamber of Commerce. Led by President, Chairman and Chief Financial Officer, José Guerrero, the management team also includes Executive Vice President and Chief Operating Officer, Jane Allerman-Rey; Senior Vice President and Chief Financial Officer, Robert Peacock; Senior Vice President and Senior Lending Officer, John Duncan; Senior Vice President of Retail Banking, John Fitzpatrick; and Senior Vice President and Treasurer, Thomas Mathews. Dedicated Spencer managers such as Ed Kurbansade, Jr., make that corporate commitment come alive at the local level. As the manager of the Piaget Ave. branch, Kurbansade and Van Houten Ave. manager Halina Qasem have immersed themselves in everything from managing street fairs to being advocates for their neighborhoods. Their focus, they say, has been to make their neighborhood a better place to live and work. 50 November 2012 • Clifton Merchant

From left, Jane Allerman-Rey (EVP, Chief Operating Officer), John Duncan (SVP, Senior Lending Officer), William Callahan (VP, Retail Sales Manager), John Fitzpatrick (SVP, Retail Banking), and Clifton branch managers Ed Kurbansade, Jr. and Halina Qasem.

In Kurbansade’s case, his dedication to Clifton is evidenced by his leadership roles and active involvement in the NJRCC. He currently serves as chair of its board of directors, after previously serving as a director on the board from 2007 to 2010. He is also involved with the Boys & Girls Club, the Clifton Rotary Club and Clifton’s Downtown Economic Development Group. Kurbansade served as President of the Clifton Rotary Club from 2008 to 2009 and is currently a member of the Board of Trustees for the Clifton Boys and Girls Club.

As a member of the Downtown Clifton group, he became active in creating a vision for the Main Avenue commercial corridor. And don’t let the kids read this but he put a smile on many faces when he donned the red suit for last year’s tree lighting at the Annual Downtown Holiday Party. While Spencer’s executive management team and managers such as Kurbansade and Qasem are a driving force in community relations, all 225 of the bank’s dedicated employees participate in local initiatives. Over the past few years, Spencer employees have gone out into their communities, making them better places through the bank’s Teach Students to Save Program. There is also an annual scholarship program, which to-date has donated $245,000 to local students, as well as small business networking events which provide essential information on timely topics, helping to strengthen the business communities. Additionally, employees consistently contribute their time and help raise awareness by fundraising and participating in Paterson Habitat for Humanity’s Corporate Build Days. There are annual toy drives in which the toys collected are delivered by the Spencer Santa and Elves directly to children in local hospitals,

food drives that benefit five food banks, fundraising and annual participation in Relay for Life. Individually and as teams or volunteers, Spencer employees have joined 10 community 5K races that raise funds and awareness for local charities. Spencer’s employees have also donated their time and provided fundraising efforts in support of the Muscular Dystrophy Association, the American Cancer Society, the American Heart Association, Cystic Fibrosis Foundation and Special Olympics New Jersey. Spencer Savings Bank remains deeply rooted and committed to the communities it serves and proudly supports local business and workforce initiatives as well as numerous civic groups, charitable organizations and youth groups. The NJRCC 2012 Star Award Gala on Dec. 6 at the Westmount Country Club will honor the Fette Family, Spencer Savings Bank and include a tribute to retiring Chamber President Gloria Martini. To attend, tickets are $140. The Chamber is also selling space in an ad journal. Reserve space by Nov. 15. For information, call 973-470-9300.

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52 November 2012 • Clifton Merchant


Senior & Junior Humanitarians Rotary & Interact Clubs Among Those Collecting Coats & Food By Joe Hawrylko Internationally, the Rotary Club is known as a charitable, humanitarian organization with a lengthy history of service. Founded in 1905, it features 33,000 chapters and more than 1.2 million members. Rotary initiatives have eradicated polio, addressed health issues, helped feed the hungry and improved education world wide. Locally, the Clifton Rotary supports some 25 charities On this page, Mauna Trivedi (far left) poses with some of her students in the Interact Club at CHS. On the facing page, Rotary Club members Pat DeLora, Russ Schneider, Carlos Vargas and Angela Montague. The Interact members include Justin Mozolewski, Elizabeth Barattini (in basket) and Tricai Montague.

annually through various drives and monetary donations—and they throw a helluva annual Beefsteak too, At Clifton High School, teenage humanitarian are being groomed in the Interact Club. “Interact Club is a high school version of the Rotary that does community service,” explained Angela Montague, the Rotary Liaison to Interact. She has held the position for six years. “Anytime there’s something going on in the community that needs help we call the Interact kids. When the Boys & Girls Club and the 21 Club hosts the Family Super Bowl Day event, the Interact kids go there to volunteer and help out.” Clifton Merchant • November 2012


Helping Neighbors Members include: Tricia Montague, Shivani Rana, Shivani Ganatra, Elizabeth Barattini, Andriy Koutun, George Harhaj, Laura Echavez, Carolina Osma, Danielle Babilonia, Sruti Rana, Anne Zhang, Suzette Lee, Stephanie Miranda, Denisse Romano, Shikha Rana, Bishwa Patel, Janice Hurtado, Jonathan Satelo, Maitry Mahida, Justin Mozolewski, Cristian Ramirez, Danny Trujillo, Chantel Ayoub Natasha Velasquez, Unnati Patel, Ana Reljic and Canberk Ceylan. The Interact Club’s current project is supporting the Rotary’s food and coat drive, which is going on through the holiday season. This will be the fifth year that the Interact Club has assisted in the drive. “Last year was the most we came up with,” said Mauna Trivedi, a Career/Vocational Teacher who has been the head of the CHS Interact Club for six years. “Mrs. Montague, our liaison, her trunk and her front and back seats were completely packed with coats.” The coats are then brought down to Deluxe Cleaners on Main Ave. where they are dry cleaned free of charge and taken to St. Peter’s Haven. “We get about 300 coats per year from the Rotary and Interact Clubs, the Fire Department and St. Peter’s. And we have people

drop them off here,” said Pat DeLora, owner of DeLuxe and a Rotary member since 1999. “It’s just a good way to contribute to the community and give back a bit. Bob Hammer (the late former City Manager) got me involved with Rotary.” Over the next few days, Rotary Club members will be at are supermarkets asking shoppers to purchase a few items to donated to St. Peter’s Haven. The Interact students are also collecting non-perishable foods which will also be donated to St. Peter’s Haven. Both drives will continue throughout the holiday season. “We’ve been doing this for St. Peter’s Haven for many years. Pretty much as long as I can remember,” said Russ Schneider, who has been a Rotary member for 13 years. He became president in July.

Support the good work of St. Peter’s Haven, which is on Clifton Ave. To donate food items, call 973-546-3406.

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While the Interact Club solicits donations from students at school, the Rotary members will be out doing the same at each Clifton supermarket on Nov. 3 “George Jacobs, who manages Styertowne, he’s the one who really organizes it. He arranges all of the pick ups at supermarkets in Clifton,” Schneider explained. “On Saturday morning, Nov. 3, we go out for about three hours. We stand at the entrance and hand out flyers to people, asking them to pick up some items and hopefully give us something after they shop. Afterwards, we deliver it to St. Peter’s Haven that same day.” Schneider estimated that his group collect between 10 and 15 bags worth of goods from each Clifton store that they visit. In addition to the food and coat drives, the Rotary also gives St.

Peter’s an annual financial donation, which varies each year depending on the amount of money raised through various Rotary events, such as their blockbuster beefsteak. Last year, the group gifted The Haven with $2,500. Interact and Rotary also team up for their annual Thanksgiving lunch with members of Disabled Information Awareness Living (DIAL). The event takes place at St. Brendan’s Church the tuesday before Thanksgiving. Interact also started a new fundraising drive in the Spring to get dictionaries to children in Jamaica. Likewise, Rotary annually donates dictionaries to third grade students in each Clifton school. Rotary also offers scholarships to Interact members through its Rotary Youth Leadership Awards, which is a leadership training program

“I think it’s a really good way to serve the community,” Schneider. said of his service with Rotary. “We have about 25 different charities that we help out each year and it’s just a really good way to help out.”

Clifton Merchant • November 2012


Helping Neighbors The Chiropractic Center at Styertowne, 501 Allwood Rd., is collecting non-perishable food items for St. Peter’s Haven through Nov. 16. This is the 11th year that the Center has held the drive. New patients who donate will receive: a free exam, consultation and x-rays in exchange for six or more items, or an exam, consultation, x-rays and adjustment for 12 or more items. For info, call 973-777-6995.

Clifton Firefighters are are collecting gently used coats. Pictured at Station 5 on Brighton Rd. are FF Sean O'Rourke, FF Joe Lauritano, FF Steve Turi, Cpt. Nick Marchisello and LT. Fikret Darzanoff

The Clifton Fire Dept.’s coat drive is Nov. 11 to 25. Drop off coats at: Fire Station 1, 69 1st St.; Fire Station 2, 7 Dumont Ave.; Fire Station 3, 180 Mahar Ave.; Fire Station 4, 144 Main Ave.; Fire Station 5, 51 Brighton Rd.; Clifton Fire Station 6, 1202 Van Houten Ave. For more info, email CliftonFMBA21@gmail.com or visit www.fmba21.org.

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e r u t u F t h ig r B A r e Pow for Students at WWMS

From left at rear: WWMS Administrative Intern Chrissy Bertollo, Vice-Principal Mike Doktor and Principal Maria Romeo. From left, students Nasif Basith, Samantha Miller and Ana-Maria Prkic.

Woodrow Wilson Middle School stands to win up to $50,000 in grant money from the Clorox company, but to do so, Clifton’s students need our help. The Clorox Power a Bright Future program offers $50,000 as a grand prize and six $25,000 grants. WWMS administrators wrote up a proposal and an application with a plan of how they would allocate the funding to improve the Van Houten Ave. facilities and learning environment. 58 November 2012 • Clifton Merchant

The WWMS administrative team of Principal Maria Romeo, Vice-Principal Mike Doktor and Administrative Intern Chrissy Bertollo put together a proposal to improve the school’s central courtyard, which is currently only utilized for the eighth grade Farewell Dance. Under the Clorox grant guidelines, the WWMS proposal falls within the play category, one of four options to meet qualifications.

Voting runs from Nov. 5 through Dec. 12. Be sure to vote daily. Visit www.powerabrightfuture or text WWMS’s code to 95248. “We thought about what we could fix up in the school to help students from a variety of different levels in different ways,” explained Bertollo, a 2002 graduate of Clifton High School who taught at WWMS for five years. She was named an administrative intern this year. “Language arts classes can utilize the area as inspiration for writing and poetry readings. Our special needs population would benefit from the musical space. Science classes would benefit by looking at the life cycle of plants and animals such as butterflies and tadpoles. “Math classes will be able to calculate percentage growth rates of the plants. Magnifying glass screens can be used to look at hand made fossils in social studies classes. Even the Cooking Club will be able to use the vegetables and herbs that are grown to cook with.” Bertollo said once the grant is awarded, getting the job done will be a school project.

She sees it working into a variety of aspects of school life, socially, academically even after school. “Students will take part in the creation of the Outdoor Learning Environment. Art students will paint tiles for the performance area. Environmental Club members will plant the flowers and crops.” Vote for WWMS from Nov. 5 to Dec. 12. Go to www.powerabrightfuture.com and search for the Woodrow Wilson Middle School proposal and vote once a day. There were more than 2,500 submissions, with 70 of those schools being from New Jersey. The winners are determined by a vote, which runs from Nov. 5 through Dec. 12. Remember, you must be 13 years old to vote. You can also text your vote to 95248 by visiting www.powerabrightfuture.com and finding the corresponding Clifton keyword. We’ll keep you informed of the progress.

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Clifton Merchant • November 2012


B&GC History

Forget about channel surfing. Back in December, 1950, very few American homes had television sets. People watched the tube in shop windows or in community centers. So this gang gave three cheers to the owners of Clifton Industrial Television when the firm donated a new black and white tv to the Boys Club.

Imagine a Time Before Color TV & You’ll Give Three Cheers for the Founders, Too Back in the late 1940’s, the organization known today as the Clifton Boys & Girls Club was just a modest idea talked about in city neighborhoods. Known then nationally as the Boys Clubs of America—as it was a male only organization—the fledgling group had a growing need but not a permanent home. Stanley Zwier began meetings of the Athenia Boys Club but by 1945, William Bratton then a high school student, was elected president. He recalled in a 1999 interview that the School 13 janitor, Jack Taylor, allowed the boys to meet at the school. Bratton went on to become a lawyer and Zwier, who died in 1999, became Clifton’s 14th mayor. The Boys Club of Clifton began as a branch of the Passaic Boys Club and members were permitted to use the pool and handball court at the Passaic YMCA on Friday nights. 60 November 2012 • Clifton Merchant

But despite the goodwill from our sometimes sister city, and access to the facilties at the Passaic Y, residents and civic organizations wanted to have a place Clifton youth could call their own. That came in 1947 in the form of a donation from the Clifton Kiwanis and the Clifton Boys Club was established in name. Richard Drukker was named as the first president and temporary headquarters were set up at School 13 on Van Houten Ave. Soon other civic organizations stepped forward and supported the cause: Optimist Club, the Moose, Lions and the Rotary joined the Kiwanis in lending a hand to the cause, making large contributions with the investment of Clifton’s youth in mind. But in a large way, the Club owed its existence to the membership of the Clifton Kiwanis, which recog-

Members of the Class of 2012 earned about $30 million in scholarships and grants. Clifton graduates earned over $2.5 million of those scholarships and grants.

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B&GC History

Sipping soda through a straw and looking dapper at a Boys Club social, circa 1962.

nized the need for a program in Clifton that would provide a home base for these boys. Most of the other Club directors were Kiwanians as well. Under the leadership of David Walker and the guidance of people like Stephen Dudiak, John Celentano, Martin Parian, Bob Peare, Les Floyd and others, a capital fund drive was started with the intent of purchasing a permanent home for the Club. A donation of $500 from the Clifton Kiwanis and an assurance of school board cooperation enabled club activities to begin in the summer of 1948 in Athenia’s School 13 on Van Houten Ave. Attendance was 375. In July1949, George Palino was named director and transfers within the Clifton school system forced the club to shift its temporary quarters to the Botany, with rooms made available in School 7 on Randolph Ave. Also in 1949, the Boys Club was listed within the groups which would benefit from the $222,974 to be raised as part of the Neighborhood Community Chest. $6,650 was earmarked for the Boys Club. But by November of that year, many doubted if Clifton was ready for its own Club. The failure of the 62 November 2012 • Clifton Merchant

Neighborhood Community Chest Drive to raise its quota of $222,974 led many to worry if the club would have enough money to operate. Despite having a census of 680 boys in 1949, the future of the Boys Club looked uncertain. More citizens and companies had to become interested and show their financial support to make the dream a reality. That’s when reporters from the papers began to beat the drum. In December 1949, a flurry of stories began to appear in the Herald & News and other publications that brought the appeal to the public in kindly words and appealing and funny photos. With both morning and evening newspapers, a slew of stories told of the many benefits and services of the club to Clifton youth. It prompted some individuals and groups to host fundraisers, as over 20 hot dog nights were arranged by sponsoring clubs and families. Another report recalled how for that Christmas, a few benefactors arranged to bring about 150 Clifton boys in jackets and ties as guests for a party at the landmark Robin Hood Inn on Valley Rd.

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B&GC History The campaign was picking up steam and even more members. In early 1950, with some good will, a variety of funding sources and growing enrollment, the Boys Club was on the move again. This time the destination was to a new “permanent” home, a deserted tavern at 67 Center St. Dedicated in October 1950, the grand opening was also a time to introduce Athenia resident Frank Niader as assistant club director to George Palino. That following summer, newspapers reported that some 75 boys went to the Passaic Boys Club Summer Camp Ocawasin in West Milford for some days of swimming and recreation. In 1951, the Clifton Boys Club became official—it was formally recognized by the Boys Clubs of America. By 1956 Al J. Abruscato was named executive director. Plans began to be made to move to its current location at 820 Clifton Ave., the Club’s new facility was opened in June, 1958 with a $250,000 budget. President David Walker and Stephen Dudiak, chair of the building fund, oversaw the opening. Other landmark changes and key dates were on the horizon. In 1962, Camp Ranger was acquired and renamed Camp Clifton. By 1965, a petition was signed by 663 women of the community, all of whom came together with the goal of creating the Girls Club of Clifton. The petition was presented to the City Council and referred to the Board of Recreation for study. A year later, in 1966, the Girls Club was founded by Donna Aiello, a first for New Jersey. Charles Manella spearheaded support for it, offering his East First St. address as temporary headquarters. The first official home of Girls Club was 1241 Main Ave. Eventually, the Girls Club purchased their own building—an old post office on the corner of Van Houten and Mt. Prospect Aves. which today is a Pizza Hut. 64 November 2012 • Clifton Merchant

1968–A provisional membership certificate for the Girls Club was issued by the national organization. 1970–Full membership for the Girls Club was granted. 1974–Dolores Colucci was named executive director of the Girls Club in July. 1978–Clifton’s first after-school day-care program is opened at the Girls Club, with 30 children. 1979–Teen center and social hall were dedicated at the Boys Club. 1983–A pre-school program began at the Girls Club, with 24 children. 1986–The Girls Club building was sold and the two clubs consolidate and become the Boys & Girls Club of Clifton, at 820 Clifton Ave. Dolores Colucci was named executive director. 1997–Renovations for a $4.2 million expansion project began April 6. The new facility will feature a competition sized pool, a computer room, learning center, counseling area, library, nutrition center and an expanded gymnasium. 1999–On Sept. 13, the newly renovated Boys & Girls Club building was complete and ready to serve the children of Clifton. A grand re–opening dedication ceremony took place in November and club membership at the time was 2,265.

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B&GC History

Did You Pass Through the Club? Then Come to the Nov. 16 Party You don’t have to attend the Fall Into the Past 6th Annual Alumni Beefsteak but if you do a good time is guaranteed. The purpose is to “Fall Into The Past” by celebrating the 2012 Hall of Famer. Inductees by era include 1950’s: Tom Cupo and Gordon Hahn; 1960’s: Ken and Keith Shedlock; 1970’s: Walter Munk and Carl Williams; 1980’s: Don Knapp and Stan Lembryk; 1990’s: Anton Dittrich and Melissa Butler; 2000’s: Laura Bania and Craig Casperino. But even if you can’t make it to the party— the beefsteak is on Nov. 16 at 7 pm at the Clifton Ave. facility—you can still donate your time and money in other ways. The annual giving campaign runs yearround and donations and gifts of all sizes are needed. You can memorialize a loved one in a paving stone in the walkway outside the Club for $100. Volunteer at the big money-making bingo games or become a tutor or a mentor. Fact is, with such a large club, there are so many ways to help. So if you are going to attend the dinner, come ready to party. Plans for the gala include a video prepared on the inductees and the operations of the club, swinging entertainment by the Manhattan Brothers, complimentary wine tasting by Stew Leonard’s. Tickets are $40 and all proceeds go to the club. Planning the night are alumni Committee Chairs Bill and Laura Marchioni, as well as Cindy DeVos, Sean Gunby, Keith Oakley, Dante Liberti, Lori SlaterBrigati, Louis Poles and Executive Director Robert Foster. The event will be a meet, greet and celebration... a time to connect with old friends, an opportunity to support the Club of today and to set firm the foundation for the Club of tomorrow. 66 November 2012 • Clifton Merchant

Today, more than 5,200 boys and girls are taking advantage of the services provided by the Club which offers a variety of programs. The Boys & Girls Club of Clifton is a place where kids take part in a broad range of character building, recreational and educational programs and are provided with a chance to set and achieve goals, make friends and have a good time. To make a tax exempt contribution, or to purchase ticket, visit or call Executive Director Bob Foster at 973-773-0966, write to him at rfoster@bgcclifton.org or go online to www.bgcclifton.org.


Clifton Merchant • November 2012


B&GC Alumni

B&GC Hall of Famers By Carol Leonard

Lifelong Cliftonite Don Knapp started going to the Boys & Girls Club in 1976 at the age of seven. He remembers the club as a place where he could meet up with his friends after school and on weekends. It’s where he played indoor soccer. “I just felt good to go there,” he said of the club. “You got to know the counselors and they got to know you. You felt safe there.” Knapp still lives in the home he grew up in near Robin Hood Park in the Richfield section, where he attended School 2, Woodrow Wilson Middle School and Clifton High School. Using the soccer skills he developed as a young kid at the Boys & Girls Club, Knapp played soccer all four years at CHS under the guidance of legendary coach Fernando Rossi. When he was 17, he was hired by the Boys & Girls Club to be its gym director. The job involved organizing activities for the members, and he also coached indoor soccer. Knapp continued to work at the club until he was 22. He left after the sudden death of his father so that he, his brother and mom could take over the family business, RF Knapp Construction. Even though he didn’t work there any longer, Knapp continued on at the club as a volunteer coach with the soccer program until just a few years ago. He also became involved with the Clifton Stallions soccer program, coaching both recreation 68 November 2012 • Clifton Merchant

Craig Casperino and Don Knapp are among the inductees at this year’s Boys & Girls Club Hall of Fame event. On facing page, a cover photo from our Feb. 1998 magazine with William Martini breaking ground on the current expansion.

as well as travel teams for 21 years. Knapp also joined the Men’s Club at the Boys & Girls Club in 1992 and has served as its president since 1995. Volunteers with the Men’s Club run the Bingo program at the Boys & Girls Club to help

raise money for various club activities. They also organize special events, such as Family Bingo Night. “I wanted to give something back to the club and to the community,” Knapp said of his continued involvement.

Knapp says that he misses his coaching days, but the demands of his job precluded his ability to continue in that role. But the Men’s Club offers him more time flexibility so that he could maintain his connection with the Boys & Girls Club. Looking back over the years, Knapp is pleased with the growth and progress that the Boys & Girls Club has made since he was a child. “There are a lot more activities now,” he said, citing the addition of basketball and floor hockey, among others. “There are teen counselors and the after school program is more organized.” Walter Munk remembers the Boys & Girls Club as a place where he and his buddies from the Dutch Hill section of Clifton would hang out during the summers.

“There were about 12 of us from the neighborhood who would all walk there together every day,” he said. There, the group of friends would enjoy swimming and other athletic activities as well as day trips over the long vacation from school. “I really liked the camaraderie,” he said. “It was a place where you could make new friends and just have fun. It kept us off the streets.” The club was also a place where Munk honed his basketball skills under the direction of longtime coach Tom DiDonna. “He was the one who got me to really love the game,” Munk said of DiDonna. “He was a very positive role model. He took me under his wing and spent a lot of time with me. I’ll always be grateful for the influence he had on my life.”

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Clifton Merchant • November 2012


B&GC Alumni

The members of the Manhatten Brothers bring their swinging and danceable music to the Club for the Nov. 16 party. In a photo from a past B&GC alumni event are: Ted, Richie, Justin, Jim, Eddie, Susan, Carolyn, Jenna, Kristin, Bob, Dave, Dante, Dania and Paul Manhatten. Not pictured are Norman and Michael Manhatten, who will at perform this year’s event.

Munk recalls that the first team he played on for the club was when he was in eighth grade. “We weren’t very good and we had to play against other teams that had a lot more experience than we had,” he said. The following year, Munk said he helped to recruit a bunch of younger guys for the team, including Bob Holly, Dennis Tarmant, Brian Murphy, Billy Corn and Carl Williams. “We were an awesome team with all those guys,” he said. One of Munk’s best memories from his days at the Boys & Girls Club was when he was named Best Athlete of the Year. “I won this humongous trophy,” he laughed. Munk went on to become a successful athlete at Clifton High School, playing basketball and football, and was a member of the track & field team. His first coaching experience was at the club, coaching basketball in the summer league. He later became the freshman boys coach at CHS, and he also helped out coaching the seventh and eighth grade girls travel team. Munk received a degree in elementary education from Wesley College. He taught preschool for two years and is currently a special education instructional aide with the Paterson Board of Education. He is also head freshman football coach at Paterson Eastside High School. Carl Williams is thrilled to be inducted into the Hall of Fame alongside his good friend, Walter Munk. “He was the one who got me involved in the club when I moved to Clifton,” Williams said of Munk. “He brought me to the club one day and, if it wasn’t for that, I don’t know what my life would have become.” 70 November 2012 • Clifton Merchant

The first place Williams went at the Boys & Girls Club was the gym. “I couldn’t swim, so that’s where I headed instead,” he said. “I picked up a basketball and that was it, I got hooked on the game.” Like Munk, Williams cannot give enough praise to coach DiDonna. “His influence was monumental,” Williams said of DiDonna. “I had a bad temper that he helped tone down. I was one of the youngest to play for coach DiDonna. He gave me a uniform and put me on the bench with the older guys. He gave me a chance. If you played for Tom DiDonna, you played for the best.” Williams said that going to the Boys & Girls Club taught him how to get along with different kinds of people and that he has brought that temperament into his adult life. At CHS Williams played basketball and ran cross country. He went on to run cross country at Bergen Community College and participated in the junior college cross country national championships. He now resides in Virginia, where he is employed by the City of Portsmouth. One of the youngest inductees into the Hall of Fame, Craig Casperino got turned on to the Boys & Girls Club when he was in fifth grade. It was the year that the Clifton Board of Education introduced a partnership with the club to provide swimming lessons to elementary school students as part of the district’s physical education program.

Aquatics Director Nadia Stavko noticed that Casperino already had good swimming skills so she asked him to join the swim team. “I’ve been involved with the club ever since,” he said. A Clifton High School 2007 graduate, Casperino grew up and still lives in the Lakeview section, where he attended School 11 and later Woodrow Wilson Middle School. He swam with the Boys & Girls Club team until he was 18. “It taught me discipline and to be on time,” he said. At age 15, Casperino started working as a swim instructor at the club and then became the assistant swim coach. He also swam for four years on the CHS team and for two years at Montclair State University. For the past six summers, he has worked as a lifeguard at Lavallette Beach, and this past summer he served as captain of the lifeguards. Last May he graduated from Montclair State with a degree in history and hopes to land a teaching job. Tom Cupo’s involvement with the Boys & Girls Club dates back to 1950, when, as a young boy, he joined the club at its original location on Center Street.

In 1965 he became a member of the club’s Board of Trustees and eventually became president. He continues serve on the Board. Cupo went on to successful career in the insurance and real estate business and is still CEO of the agency founded by his father. Throughout his career, he never forgot the importance of civic responsibility, serving as a member of the Clifton City Council from 1966 until 1974. He was also a member of the Board of the Clifton Library and the Private Industry Council of Passaic County. Cupo has been involved with the Clifton Jaycees, the Clifton Optimist Club and UNICO, and was Clifton chairman of the United Fund of Clifton, the Passaic County Cancer Society Drive and the Passaic County Heart Association. He served on the Board of Directors of St. Mary’s Hospital and was president of the Clifton Chamber of Commerce. He has received various civic awards and recognitions, including the Boys & Girls Clubs of America Bronze Medallion. Editor’s note: despite efforts by the Club, many of the 2012 hall of famers did not respond with information.

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Clifton Merchant • November 2012


Clifton Milestones

She Quit Scotch & Tomatoes at 104 For her 100th birthday five years ago, Marguerite Heerschap celebrated with family and friends, and was also paid a visit by Mayor James Anzaldi, who gave her an official proclamation and a key to the city. “When he gave me the key to the city, I asked him, ‘Does this mean I don’t have to pay taxes?” she laughed. Unfortunately, Heerschap still pays taxes on her Lincoln Ave. home. But even though she will turn 105 on Nov. 14, the Cliftonite is as sharp as she was when we first sat down with her five years ago, even though age has forced Heerschap to give up two of her favorite things. After being diagnosed with high potassium earlier in the year, Heerschap had to alter her diet. The main omission are tomatoes, which, ironically, was the reason she had high potassium in the first place. Heerschap enjoyed the fruit and ate several a day thinking it would be healthy. However, despite orders from

her doctor to avoid tomato products, rumor has it that Heerschap occasionally still sneaks a little ketchup on her burgers. The Cliftonite also had to give up drinking for health reasons this past year. She had her last Dewars on the rocks with a twist a little over a year ago... Well, that might be a little bit of a white lie. Heerschap and Caryl Diana, her live-in caretaker, occasionally sneak in a cocktail when no one is looking. Diana, along with Heerschap’s daughter, Alice Clearwater, and longtime neighbor Sally Brask, happily recalled many memories shared with the birthday girl. “My kids used to come over and visit her all the time, and their kids too” said Brask. “She has always been Aunt Marguerite to them.” Heerschap, who graduated from Clifton High School in 1925, has a large extended family of her own: three grandchildren and nine greatgrandchildren who range in age from 6 to 26. And since she’s been long

Marguerite Heerschap turns 105 on Nov. 14 and she’s sharp as ever.

retired, having called it a career in 1972 after 24 years as a secretary at City Hall, Heerschap has plenty of

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time to enjoy the company of family and friends, among other activities. She still regularly attends mass and other events at United Reformed Church, where Heerschap is the parish’s oldest member. She is also an active member of The Eastern Star. But when not busy with activities in those two groups, Heerschap is typically at home watching TV and movies with Caryl Diana, occasionally sneaking a cocktail or some tomatoes. “They were talking about the new Peanut’s movie on TV. It’s coming out in a few years.” laughed Diana. “We were joking the other day that we’re going to live until 2015 to see it.”

At left is longtime neighbor Sally Brask, Heerschap’s daughter, Alice Clearwater, Marguerite Heerschap and Caryl Diana. Above, Marguerite Craig Heerschap on her wedding day, Oct. 8, 1936.

Clifton Merchant • November 2012


A l o n g Ma i n Ave n u e i n t o

Several hundred costumed residents strolled Main Ave. on Oct. 28 for the annual HarvestFest Parade. Despite the threat of Hurricane Sandy, the show did go on and proceeded to one big fall festival in Main Memorial Park. The photos on these pages are of some of those Clifton characters as well as volunteers from the Rec Department which staged this annual event. Photos by: Ken Peterson 74 November 2012 • Clifton Merchant

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People & Events City Green, the non-profit urban farming group which now operates the former Schultheis Farm on Grove St., hosts a fundraiser at the Van Vleck House and Gardens, 21 Vlan Vleck St., Montclair, on Nov. 11 from 2 to 5 pm. Listen to live jazz music and enjoy seasonal foods, which was harvested at City Green’s farms in Clifton and Paterson. Donation is $50. For info, call 973-8694086 or visit www.citygreenonline.org. St. Brendan Catholic School, 154 East 1st St. hosts its 14th Annual Grocery Auction on Nov. 11. Doors open at 12:30 pm. Tickets are $10. Kitchen will be open for lunch. Call 973-772-1149.

PC senior Jacqueline Grant is a top five percenter.

Jacqueline Grant has been named a Commended Student in the 2013 National Merit Scholarship Program. Grant finished in the top five percent of more than 1.5 million students who entered the 2013 competition. A senior at Paramus Catholic High School, Grant has a GPA of 92 and is a PC Aquinas Scholar. She is also in National Honor Society and International Language Honor Society as well as a member of the Quiz Bowl Team and Yearbook Club. Grant attended School 3 and the Classical Academy Charter School of Clifton. PCHC is a co-ed high school with over 1,500 students. Paramus Catholic High School students lived on Oct. 13 and 14 as homeless people do as part of the 6th Annual Tent City Homeless Experience. Some 60 students brought only the clothes on their backs, a cardboard box and a tarp. They spent the day building their homes, preparing meals for local homeless shelters and participated in group discussions about the importance of serving others. They celebrated Mass and after ate a modest meal served soup kitchen style. Using donated items to try and keep warm under their ‘homes.’ they slept outside in their tent city overnight. For info, visit www.paramuscatholic.com or call 201-445-4466. The Richfield Church, 267 Pershing Rd., hosts an open forum every Saturday morning at 10:30 am to discuss the Christian faith. Meetings are free and open to the public. For info, call 973-773-5586. 82 November 2012 • Clifton Merchant

St. Paul’s Leisure Club meets the second and fourth Wednesdays of the month at 1 pm in the church hall, 231 Second St. Events include a trip to Camp Hope and Nov. 4 and Dec. 10 and a Christmas show and luncheon at the Hunterdon Hills Playhouse on Nov. 27. For fees and details, call 973-546-7690. In Step Fitness hosts a Zumba Dance Party to benefit the Leukemia Society on Nov. 9 from 7:30 to 9:30 pm at School 2, 1270 Van Houten Ave. Registration is $20 or $15 if pre-registered. Call 973-778-7837. AARP 4192 meets on Nov. 9, noon, at the Masonic Lodge on Van Houten Ave. A drive to collect personal items for veterans and non-perishable foods for St. Peter’s Haven in underway. A Christmas luncheon is on Dec. 14 at the Mountainside Inn. For more information, call 973-471-3472. The Young at Heart Senior Social Club will visit Camp Hope for its Salute to Veterans on Nov. 7. On Nov. 27 there will be the Christmas show/luncheon at Hunterdon Hills Playhouse. The Club meets the first and third Tuesday of each month at the Fellowship Hall of the First Presbyterian Church on Maplewood Ave. at 12:30 pm. For info, call 973-779-5581. The Dutch Hill Residents Association will hold its next meeting on Nov. 15 at 7:30 p.m. at the Family Fellowship Church, 78 De Mott Ave. While the Dutch Hill area is from Paulison and Clifton Aves. to the Passaic border and Main Ave., all are invited to attend or join the group. Call 973-365-2577.

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People & Events The Clifton Rec Dept. will travel to the Paper Mill Playhouse in Milburn on Nov. 28 to see the Sound of Music. Bus departs at 5:30 for the 7 pm show. Advance tickets are $38 and the price includes transportation. Children under 16 must be accompanied by an adult. Call 973-470-5956.

Cliftonites Yara Chalupa, Natalka Carrol, Marianna Znak-Hoholuk and Anna Diduch are among the organizers of the Christmas Bazaar at the Ukrainian Center on Dec. 16. Embroidered shirts like these ladies are wearing will be on sale.

Enjoy varenyky, kobasa and kapusta at the annual Christmas Bazaar on Dec. 16 at the Ukrainian Center, 240 Hope Ave., Passaic. While local artists will be displaying their goods, over 20 vendors from the region will be selling home-grown honey, Silpada sterling silver, Ukrainian embroideries, religious icons and holiday gifts. The Ukrainian kitchen will be fully stocked serving borscht, varenyky and kobasa with kaputsta platters for eat-in or take-out service. St. Nicholas will make an appearance and sitting for photos so bring a camera. For info, call 973-473-3379.

The Genealogy Club of the Passaic County Historical Society hosts a free presentation at 10 am on Nov. 10 at the North Jersey Federal Credit Union, 711 Union Blvd., Totowa. The speaker is Sue Shutte who will explain how the iron industry flourished during the late 1800’s in western Passaic County. She will also give a virtual tour of the National Historical Landmark District called Long Pond Ironworks in Hewitt and Ringwood. For information or more details on the program, email genealogyclub@lambertcastle.org. Nutley Little Theatre presents A Bad Year for Tomatoes, a comedy by John Patrick, at the NLT Barn, 47 Erie Pl., Nutley. Shows are Nov. 3, 9, 10, 15, 16 and 17 at 8 pm. Matinees are on Nov. 4, 11 and 17 at 2 pm. Tickets are $15. A $2 matinee for senior citizens and students. Call 1-877-238-5596, or visit www.nutleylittletheatre.com. The Phenomenal Grandmothers are collecting back packs, school supplies, stuffed animals, new bed pillows, baskets, soaps, shampoo, toothpaste, refrigerators and furniture, as well as other items suitable for teens as Christamas gifts. Call Colleen Murray at 973-253-9579 or Wanda at Oasis at 973-881-8307.

84 November 2012 • Clifton Merchant

Marrocco Memorial Chapel has been honored by the National Funeral Directors Association (NFDA) with the 2012 Pursuit of Excellence Award. Only 164 firms from around the world received this recognition. Now led by fourth generation owner James J. Marrocco, the Colfax Ave. has met and exceeded business standards set forth by NFDA in key areas, from regulations and education to programs for bereaved families and community involvement. The Marrocco family has been serving the region for 113 years. Visit www.marroccos.com. The 15th Stampede through Clifton & Health Walk is Nov. 18. The start is 9 am but get there by 7:30. Presented by Clifton Rec with support from the Clifton Road Runners, the fee is $18 or $23 after Nov. 14. Get a $5 discount when two people register in advance. With various age divisions and categories, it seems most entrants will medal. More at cliftonroadrunners.com.

You probably recognize these guys from Hot Grill, but there are also accountants and doctors in the Doris family. Eldest son, Jimmy (pictured right with brother, Pete the accountant and father, Bill) has opened up a chiropracticic office at 287 Park Ave. in Rutherford. New patients get their initial visit for half price—$55. For information, call 201-935-5548.

Clifton Recreation Dept’s Salute to the Veterans Concert is at 6:30 pm,, Nov. 19 at the Boys & Girls Club Bingo Hall, 181 Colfax Ave. Featuring the Silver Starlite Orchestra, there will also be light appetizers, deserts and soft drinks. Non-perishable food items will be collected for St. Peter’s Haven and Clifton Cares will collect items for soliders serving overseas, Call 973-470-5956.

Veterans march in the flags at the 2011 Salute to the Veterans Concert. This year’s event is on Nov. 19 at 6:30 pm at the Boys & Girls Club, 181 Colfax Ave. Bring a canned food item as admission. Clifton Merchant • November 2012


CHS Play

MURDER ON THE ORIENT EXPRESS Performances at CHS on Nov. 30 and Dec. 1 and 2. Tickets: 973-470-2312

Cast members from Murder on the Orient Express include, front from left: Kenneth Fowler, Ileana Ramos, Peter Adamo, Royce DeLeon and Shreya Patel. Rear from left: Gabriela Punales, Jonas Avancena, Christina Lazcano, Felipe Rodriguez, Yuranni Algarin and Alex Moncaleano.

The students of Clifton High School’s theater group will present Murder on the Orient Express on Nov. 30 and Dec. 1 at 7:30 pm and on Dec. 2 at 2pm. Written by Agatha Christie in 1934, the novel takes place on the fabled train as it travels from Istanbul, Turkey to Calais, France. A passenger is murdered in the Calais Coach just before a snow storm stops the train. According to director Dave Arts, Christie was inspired to write the story due to two real-life incidents: While she was traveling on the Oriental Express, an unexpected blizzard damaged the tracks, stranding pas86 November 2012 • Clifton Merchant

sengers for three days. Christie was also inspired by the tragedy of the Lindbergh kidnapping case. To reflect the eclectic mix of international passengers, students learned to speak in German, British, Italian, Swedish, French, Greek, Russian and Hungarian accents. All of the action takes place on the opulent Calais Coach, which was designed by Julie Chrobak, who was assisted by Ken Kida and members of the CHS Stage Craft Club. All shows take place in the newly renovated JFK Auditorium. Tickets are $10; $7 for students and senior citizens. For tickets, call 973-470-2312.

The leads in Murder on the Orient Express include Katie Lazcano, Gregory Gwyn, Allison Green and Kira Abrahams.

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CHS Madrigals

Thanksgiving is still weeks away, but Clifton High School’s Madrigals are already perfecting their pitch for the annual holiday season tour around Clifton. These 25 talented singers, pictured above, are under the guidance of director Christina Paulin, who is now in her second year. The group was hand picked after a try-

out session, and sings a wide range of cappella music in several different genres. The Madrigals perform at several events during the course of the year, and it is during the holiday season that they are most busy. On Nov. 30, they will sing at three different tree lightings in Clifton: at 5 pm in Lakeview, 6 pm in

Continue the Progress

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Vote Jim Daley #3

Paid for by Jim Daley

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Restored Public Trust in BOE Transparency in BOE Business Increased Course Opportunities at CHS Established Fiscal Stability in the Budget Maintained Full Activities Program for Students

88 November 2012 • Clifton Merchant

Lifelong resident Jim Daley has served 25 years in community service. A US Army Veteran, Daley is also the parent of a CHS grad.

n -

Botany Village and then at 7 pm in Dutch Hill. The Madrigals will also sing in Athenia on Dec. 1 at 6 pm, at City Hall on Dec. 2 at 5pm and at the Clifton Candy Land event on Dec. 8, where they will be featured from 5 to 8 pm. The holiday season tour closes out with the CHS Holiday Choral Concert on Dec. 12 at 7:30 pm at JFK Auditorium at the school. Catch the Madrigals at any of these venues to hear them sing a variety of holiday carol classics, such as Silent Night, Joy to the World, We Three Kings and more. The Madrigals will also visit Clifton elementary schools during the year to sing to children, and have their annual Spring Concert. “We try and get to as many of the schools as we can. Last year we were only able to get to eight of them,” said Paulin. “This year, we’re also hoping to compete near our spring concert in May. And in years past we’ve also been invited to sing at hospitals and other venues.” This year’s line up includes: Peter Adamo, Jonas Avancena, Matthew Bodnar, Michelle Choy, Sindy De

La Cruz, Jenepher Estrella, Kenneth Fowler, Kylie Gonzalez, Gregory Gwyn, Carly Hawrylko, Kaitlin Kloock, Robert Kozielec, Rebekah Kusher, Christina Lazcano, Alyssa-Ray Leon, Susan Liberti, Joseph Medina, Angelia Mocera, Lianna Palladino, Shreya Patel, Shadi Ramadan, Nasia Robles, Victoria Rodio, Nicole Wedel and Barbara Wojdag. The students have been practicing regularly, with one full period of in class instruction each day, in addition to night rehearsals. “It’s going to be a good group this year,” said Paulin. “I’m looking forward to it.” Hurricane Sandy may have been destructive, but it can’t stop the Clifton Mustang Marching Band. Catch The Showband of the Northeast as they perform at the North Jersey Band Festival on Nov. 4 at 4:30 pm at Montclair State University. In addition to the Marching Mustangs, more than 20 other bands from around the tri-state region will perform. Tickets are $12 and can be purchased through any band member, or at the door the day of the event.


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Optimist Cup Back row, from left is Dennis Morris, Mark Gardinet, Davon Stowe, Marquise Stephens, Traverus Moore and Bryan Sheppard. Front row: Chris Acevedo, Moe Shahin and Adam Linares. Below, Passaic Indians coach Phil Delzotto and Clifton Mustang coach Steven Covello.

The Optimist Clubs of Clifton & Passaic present...

Before they do battle on the gridiron, the Clifton and Passaic football teams will break bread... and down some hot dogs. This year’s Hot Dog Night will be on Wednesday, Nov. 14 at the Athenia Veterans Hall on Huron Ave. at 6:30 pm. There, the Mustangs and Indians will do a pre-celebration of the 83rd game in their rivalry series. Clifton currently leads the all time series with a record of 43-35-5, having defeated Passaic at Clifton Stadium 55-29 last year. In addition to the football players, cheerleaders and band members from both schools will attend the dinner. All kids eat for free. The public is invited and 90 November 2012 • Clifton Merchant

HOT DOG NIGHT Passaic vs. Clifton


HOT DOG NIGHT Passaic vs. Clifton 1923 1923 . . .Clifton 12 ......Passaic 7 1924 . . .Passaic 23 ......Clifton 0 1925 . . .Passaic 21 ......Clifton 6 1926 . . .Passaic 21 ......Clifton 6 1927 . . .Passaic 13 ......Clifton 0 1928 . . .Passaic 24 ......Clifton 0 1929 . . .Passaic 24 ......Clifton 0 1930 . . .Passaic 26 ......Clifton 0 1931 . . .Passaic 7 ........Clifton 0 1932 . . .Passaic 26 ......Clifton 7 1933 . . .Clifton 7 ........Passaic 6 1934 . . .Passaic 26 ......Clifton 0 1935 . . .Passaic 6 ........Clifton 0 1936 . . .Passaic 34 ....Clifton 14 1937 . . .Passaic 6 ........Clifton 0 1938 . . .Passaic 19 ......Clifton 6 1939 . . .Passaic 31 ......Clifton 6 1940 . . .Passaic 13 ......Clifton 6 1941 . . .Passaic 0 ........Clifton 0 1942 . . .Passaic 19 ......Clifton 0 1943 . . .Clifton 12 ......Passaic 6 1944 . . .Clifton 26 ......Passaic 6 1945 . . .Clifton 6 ........Passaic 0 1946 . . .Clifton 26 ....Passaic 14 1947 . . .Clifton 32 ......Passaic 0 1948 . . .Clifton 7 ........Passaic 7 1949 . . .Clifton 12 ......Passaic 0 1950 . . .Passaic 20 ......Clifton 7 1951 . . .Clifton 26 ......Passaic 6 1952 . . .Clifton 33 ....Passaic 12


INDIANS MUSTANGS 35 Wins 43 Loses 5 Ties

43 Wins 35 Loses 5 Ties

1953 . . .Clifton 21 ....Passaic 20 1954 . . .Passaic 7 ........Clifton 6 1955 . . .Passaic 7 ........Clifton 0 1956 . . .Clifton 48 ......Passaic 0 1958 . . .Clifton 40 ......Passaic 7 1959 . . .Clifton 41 ....Passaic 21 1960 . . .Clifton 28 ......Passaic 6 1961 . . .Clifton 35 ......Passaic 7 1962 . . .Clifton 31 ......Passaic 6 1963 . . .Clifton 50 ......Passaic 0 1964 . . .Passaic 27 ......Clifton 0 1965 . . .Clifton 15 ....Passaic 13 1966 . . .Clifton 7 ........Passaic 0 1967 . . .Passaic 7 ........Clifton 7 1968 . . .Clifton 27 ....Passaic 10 1969 . . .Clifton 40 ......Passaic 0 1970 . . .Clifton 49 ......Passaic 0 1971 . . .Clifton 20 ....Passaic 12 1972 . . .Clifton 35 ......Passaic 6 1973 . . .Clifton 75 ....Passaic 12 1974 . . .Clifton 47 ......Passaic 6 1976 . . .Clifton 28 ......Passaic 6 1981 . . .Passaic 20 ......Clifton 3

1982 . . .Passaic 33 ......Clifton 0 1983 . . .Passaic 20 ......Clifton 7 1984 . .Clifton 16 ......Passaic 0 1985 . .Passaic 28 ......Clifton 7 1986 . .Passaic 21 ......Clifton 8 1987 . . .Clifton 24 ....Passaic 13 1988 . . .Clifton 22 ....Passaic 22 1989 . . .Passaic 22 ......Clifton 0 1990 . . .Passaic 14 ......Clifton 7 1991 . . .Passaic 33 ....Clifton 16 1992 . . .Passaic 13 ....Clifton 10 1993 . . .Passaic 0 ........Clifton 0 1994 . . .Passaic 12 ......Clifton 7 1995 . . .Passaic 21 ......Clifton 7 1996 . . .Clifton 23 ......Passaic 6 1997 . . .Passaic 22 ....Clifton 20 1998 . . .Passaic 25 ......Clifton 0 1999 . . .Passaic 20 ......Clifton 7 2000 . . .Clifton 21 ....Passaic 14 2001 . . .Clifton 20 ....Passaic 19 2002 . . .Clifton 19 ....Passaic 14 2003 . . .Clifton 17 ......Passaic 0 2004 . . .Clifton 48 ......Passaic 0 2005 . . .Clifton 7 ........Passaic 6 2006 . . .Clifton 14 ....Passaic 12 2007 . . .Clifton 18 ....Passaic 13 2008 . . .Clifton 28 ......Passaic 0 2009 . . .Clifton 7.........Passaic 0 2010 . . .Clifton 42.......Passaic 0 2011 . . .Clifton 55.......Passaic 29

Happy Thanksgiving Best Wishes to Both Teams... Enjoy the Holiday!

Passaic County Clerk

Kristin Corrado Clifton Merchant • November 2012


Optimist Cup tickets are $10. Even if you cannot come, a donation is appreciated, and will go towards feeding some hungry student athletes. Athe the hot dog night, one student from each team will speak about their experiences on the field and in the classroom, and about what this historic rivalry means to them. The goal is for these student athletes to recognize each other not only as competitors, but neighbors. After the hot dog feast, the two squads will meet again in their traditional Thanksgiving Game. That will take place on Thanksgiving Day, Nov. 22, at 10:30 am in Passaic at Boverini Stadium, which has been undergoing extensive renovations. The gme will be played on artificial turf. The historic stadium, which was built in 1927, was

92 November 2012 • Clifton Merchant

The volleyball teams from Clifton and Passaic also compete for an Optimist Cup. After the game, both squads were treated to a pizza party.

approved for restoration by Passaic voters in April and will cost $4.9 million. The key component of the upgrade will be a new artificial turf field similar to that of the playing surfaces at MetLife Stadium. The second phase of construction will

include new restrooms, locker rooms, waterproofing and stucco. Football, cheering and band supporters are invited to attend the hot dog night. For tickets or to donate, call Clifton Merchant Publisher Tom Hawrylko at 973-253-4400.

More than 1,400 Red, White and Blue flags will decorate the grounds of the City Hall Campus on Nov. 12 in honor of Veteran’s Day. This annual tradition is part of Clifton’s Avenue of Flags, which is celebrating its 10 year anniversary this fall. The concept began in 2002 after founder Walt Pruiksma mentioned his idea to other veterans. That year, about 300 flags dressed the grounds of City Hall. Today, thanks to the leadership of people like John Biegel, Keith Oakley and Bill Van Eck, it is known as one of the largest exhibits of Old Glory east of the Mississippi River. In addition to Veteran’s Day, the display is put up on display from sunrise to sundown on Memorial Day, Flag Day, Independence Day,

Labor Day and 9/11. Volunteers help set up the display and act as guides. Additional help is always needed. Likewise, more flags are always welcomed. Flags cost $100

and stand three by five feet and stand on a 10 foot pole with a brass name plate. To honor a veteran, living or deceased, call Chair John Biegel Jr. at 973-519-0858.

Clifton Merchant • November 2012


Student of the Month

Two Season Athlete, Band, Altar Server & Scholar By Joe Hawrylko With band, hockey and lacrosse on his schedule, Mark Surgent is one busy Mustang who doesn’t have very much downtime. And that’s perfectly fine with him, even if it is a little hectic. “Band and hockey overlap a bit. Our first scrimmage for hockey is the day after Thanksgiving,” laughed Surgent. With the quick change of seasons, that probably means getting his Marching Mustang uniform to DeLuxe Cleaners on his way to Floyd Hall Arena. Ice hockey is the newest of his three activities and Surgent just strapped on the blades as a sophomore. “By the end of that year I had worked my way up to Varsity by the last game,” he said proudly. On the rink, the CHS Student of the Month bounces between defense and forward depending on where his coaches need him. “Defense is fun. You get to stop 94 November 2012 • Clifton Merchant

people from scoring. But I love playing forward. I played forward for maybe five games last year and scored six goals.” Surgent has been making music and part of a band since third grade. “My grandfather (John Mulick) used to play the trombone and I learned to play on his,” said Surgent. “My dad, Gregory, he travels a lot on business and he went to China and bought me one that I still use to this day.” In addition to being a Marching Mustang, Surgent volunteers to practice and perform as a member of the Clifton Community Band for the past five years. “Whenever I come home from college, I want to continue playing with them,” he said. Surgent said he would like to join a local group if he moves away. “Musicians are such interesting people.”

Surgent’s other passion, lacrosse, is something that he picked up in the sixth grade after growing bored with baseball. A friend introduced him and he’s been hooked since. “Clifton’s junior program is phenomenal and it is still growing,” he said. “I’ve been on Varsity since my freshman year. That was our best year. We weren’t that good last year, but we’re looking better this year and hoping to build off of that.” Surgent, who plays attack for the Mustangs, plans on continuing his lacrosse career in college. “I plan to let my academics guide where I’m going to college and I’ll go from there. I’m going to try to walk on wherever I go,” he explained. The student of the month plans to study finance and corporate strategy, and is looking at Villanova, Lehigh, Rensselaer, Rutgers, Boston College, Northeastern and UPenn. “My favorite is Boston College. UPenn is more of a reach,” he said. “Boston College has a great business school. It’s ranked ninth in the country. It’s right outside a big city and I would be with a bunch of other big achievers.” Surgent said his interest in commerce was cultivated in the classroom at Clifton High School, specifically in

AP statistics with Mrs. Chin. “She’s a gem,” he laughed. “Just the way she taught that class, she loved it as much as us and she just really loved teaching.” Despite a busy schedule, Surgent hasn’t shied away from taking a challenging workload, and has taken AP calculus, French, accounting, English and psychology, in addition to statistics. Surgent also is an office worker and helps Mr. Kessler, a guidance counselor at CHS. Last year, he helped form a peer tutoring program at the high school. Surgent hopes to expand the program to the elementary schools this year. “It’s a good way for me to give back,” he said. Surgent credits his altruistic side due to his religious upbringing. “I go to church every Sunday,” he said. Surgent and his family attend St. Peter and Paul Russian Orthodox Cathedral in Passaic. “As a freshman, I started assistant teaching Sunday class there. I’ve been an altar server for 13 years. As a person, I strive to make myself a culmination of all the people that I meet. I try to be as well rounded as possible.” Given his interests, attitude and personality, it seems Mark Surgent has achieved that.

Clifton Merchant • November 2012


Birthdays & Celebrations - November 2012

Happy Birthday to Nicole Mokray who will be 12 on Nov. 7. Peter and Heather Fierro’s son Matthew had his first birthday on Nov. 25. Happy Birthday to Peter Kendl (pictured with Ottilia and Alex) on Nov. 25. Tricia Montague will be 18 on Nov. 9.

Birthdays & Celebrations

Send dates & names...tomhawrylko@optonline.net Robert Paci .................11/13 Jazzlyn Caba ................11/1 Gregory Chase ...........11/15 Robyn Jo Paci................11/2 Ken Peterson ...............11/15 Thomas Scancarella .......11/2 Matthew Phillips ..........11/16 Kelly Tierney .................11/3 Anthony Wrobel ..........11/16 Lance Dearing ...............11/4 Marilyn Velez ..............11/18 Andrew Seitz ................11/4 Joseph Tyler ................11/19 Victoria Krzysztofczyk ....11/5 Joseph Guerra.............11/20 Tanya Ressetar...............11/5 Jon Whiting ................11/21 Kristina Azevedo ...........11/6 Andreas Dimitratos ......11/22 Nicole Lorraine Bonin.....11/6 Katerina Dimitratos ......11/22 Martha Derendal ...........11/6 Margaret Egner ...........11/22 Danielle Osellame .........11/6 Brian Derendal ............11/25 Kristen Soltis..................11/6 Eileen Fierro................11/25 James Ball.....................11/7 Peter Kedl ...................11/25 Kevin Lord.....................11/7 Crystal Lanham............11/25 Francine Anderson.........11/8 Ray Konopinski..............11/8 Rachel Prehodka-Spindel ..11/25 Marie Sanzo .................11/8 Kristen Bridda .............11/26 Donna Camp ................11/9 Jessi Cholewczynski .....11/26 Tricia Montague ............11/9 Dillon Curtiss...............11/26 Brandy Stiles ...............11/10 Bethany Havriliak ........11/26 Tom Szieber ................11/10 Kelly Moran ................11/27 Stacey Van Blarcom Sami Suaifan...............11/28 Takacs.....................11/10 Amanda Grace Feiner..11/29 Joseph Franek III ..........11/11 Anne Hetzel ................11/29 Laura Gasior ...............11/12 Christopher Seitz .........11/29 Geraldine Ball .............11/13 Kaitlyn Graham ...........11/30 Patricia Franek ............11/13 Barbara Luzniak ..........11/30 96 November 2012 • Clifton Merchant

Happy 53nd to Joe Angello on Nov. 6. He and Sue celebrate their 13th anniversary on Nov. 14.

Van Houten Ave. jeweler Frank Lacki turned 86 on Nov. 2.

Happy 5th Birthday to Mr. Cupcakes! Come to their Clifton Store 1216 Van Houten Ave. to Celebrate and get some freebies on Nov. 3.

Happy Birthday to Nancy Hawrylko who will be 27 on Nov. 19. Clifton Merchant • November 2012


Holiday Memories Colleen Murray and Mary Jane Nagel have both grew up on Center St. in Botany Village, but lost touch over the years. However, their friendship was rekindled in 2004 after Murray founded the Phenomenal Grandmothers. Soon after Nagel joined, the two realized their connection. Both were friends three sisters from the same family—Evelyn, Joyce and Maryanne—who lived above what was then Avery Bar Supply at 67 Center St. Recently, the Center Street Girls had a small reunion and shared some of their favorite Botany memories, which will appear in the December edition of the Clifton Merchant Magazine. Likewise, we’re asking our readers to submit some of their favorite holiday memories and traditions. Share yours by calling 973-253-4400. You can also submit your story at our new website at www.cliftonmerchant.com.

98 November 2012 • Clifton Merchant

From left, Colleen Murray, Mary Jane Nagel, Joyce Danelski and Evelyn Sidor. The Center Street Girls and the rest of the Phenomenal Grandmothers will hold a membership drive and coffee klatch on Nov. 4 from 3 to 5 pm at the senior center at City Hall, 900 Van Houten Ave. Info: 973-253-9579.

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Profile for Clifton Merchant Magazine

Clifton Merchant Magazine - November 2012  

Clifton Merchant Magazine - November 2012