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service in Jackson. The fire departments responded to over 180 incidents between noon Monday and 9 PM. There were more than 20 EMS calls in that time period for Jackson First Aid and Quality Medical to respond to on top of responding with the fire department when needed. The Police Department, stretched thin as it was with storm response still handled 13 burglary alarms and made 2 arrests as a result of a disturbance call. Things did not slow down much on Tuesday when there were 313 call for service. In addition to continuing to protect the township, during the By Matt Genovese height of the storm the fire comPhotos by Jessie Langguth panies deployed a joint task force of apparatus from all four fire The arrival of Hurricane Sandy companies to Brick then to Silverput Jackson Township’s emerton to assist those hard-hit comgency personnel to the test in munities with numerous fires that the past month. Not only have they were handling. our first responders continued to Late Monday night, as the barprovide the utmost protection to rier islands flooded and people the residents of Jackson, but who didn’t evacuate became they have also pitched in to protrapped in severely flooded vide assistance to the region as homes, the Cassville Volunteer they responded to and recovered were gathering at their respective Fire Company and Jackson Mills headquarters to make final prepa- Volunteer Fire Company were from one of the worst natural rations. disasters to befall Ocean County. requested to deploy some of their Volunteer crews from Jackson As Hurricane Sandy was bear- First Aid and the four fire compa- larger forest fire vehicles that ing down on the area, Township nies, who would normally respond could push through the rising waemergency personnel met on nu- to calls from their homes, were ter to rescue the victims. They merous occasions to ensure their standing by at their stations. The responded to Mystic Island, Silverfire companies had all of their readiness. The Township OEM, ton, Toms River and the Barrier career and volunteer personnel Police Department, EMS and Fire Islands and operated for nearly 48 who were available come preDepartment leaders made prepa- pared to stay for 48 to 72 hours depending on the severity of the rations to ensure adequate staffing for the anticipated time of the storm. By midday Monday, stormstorm hitting Ocean County. The related calls were already starting fire Chiefs met with their regional to roll in, with power lines down, coordinators to ensure that they motor vehicle accidents and transwere briefed about plans for reformer fires the most common sponses out of town if the storm occurrences. In the first 24 hours hit as hard on the Shore as was of the storm response, Jackson being predicted. By Monday, October 30th, all of Township emergency personnel the plans were made and crews responded to over 400 calls for
hours making water rescues all along the shore. Additionally, the Cassville Fire Company dispatched a team with 2 flat-bottom boats to Toms River to make rescues of victims near mainland side of the Route 37 bridge that was under three to four feet of water. On Tuesday, the fire companies were called upon once again to provide a task force response to Toms River for fire protection. The Jackson Police Department dispatched officers on ATV’s to Toms River to provide security and assist the overwhelmed Toms River police department in securing their town. On Wednesday, November 1st, Jackson’s fire task force was sent to Point Pleasant Beach to assist that community’s fire department, many of whom had lost their own homes but were still responding to protect the town. In the aftermath of Hurricane Sandy, Jackson First Aid has been deployed to Seaside and the Barrier Island o augment EMS response on the island to supplement their exhausted volunteers. By Thursday, things were finally returning to normal in Jackson and the volunteer stations that had been manned since Monday were finally releasing their crews to go home and return to normal responses. However assistance
was still being provided by volunteer crews in Stafford Township and Toms River to supplement some of the hardest hit towns. In addition to their official duties, members of the Jackson Police Department volunteered thier time manning PBA tents to provide food and supplies to rescue workers and utility workers who had come in from out-of-state to restore power. Just as things started to calm down Jackson was hit again with with a snow storm the following Wednesday night into Thursday. For that two-day period, once again, Jackson’s first responders were asked to respond to an overwhelming amount of calls. in the 48 hour period from Wednesday to Thurday Jackson received 667 calls for ser-
vice. From 6 PM Wednesday until noon on Thursday, Jackson fire responded to over 200 calls– including two car fires and two structure fires; one on West County Line Road and one in Manchester in which Cassville responded as a mutual aid company. In addition there were 21 motor vehicle crashes, 33 first aid calls and 34 burglary alarms in that 48-hour period that were handled. This two-week period showed the strength and resilience of all of Jackson’s first responders. They were pushed farther than they have been pushed in a long time and once again, came up strong and Jackson can be proud of all of their emergency services.
Photo by Robert Raia As Hurricane Sandy reached the shores of Silverton’s Barnegat Bay neighborhoods, a fire broke out on the eastern section of the community. As firefighters battled the fire, Sandy’s storm surge rushed in, overcoming one of their engines and forcing the firefighters to evacuate the scene. Not only did the department lose a truck, but 10 members, including two chiefs lost their homes as well. In December, the members of Jackson’s Fire District #1, donated Whitesville’s 5505 ladder truck, which was then reassigned as 2995.
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Hurricane Sandy dealt a blow to Jackson Township in the form of thousands of downed trees, telephone poles and power outages that lasted up to nearly three weeks for many. Although hit hard by conventional standards, life in the township eventually returned to normal as the debris was cleared. There were no casualties and no major long-lasting damage to the township.
In nearby Toms River, flooding of the Barnegat Bay caused extensive damage along the bay front communities. Many homes were destroyed, pushed off their foundations and suffered major flood damage. In some areas, flood waters reached nearly six feet in the township. During the storm, the Bennett Sports Complex, where Jackson track athletes perform regularly was damaged and collapsed.
The hardest hit communities in Ocean County were Ortley Beach and Mantoloking. The ocean surge reached up to twelve feet in some locations, creating breaches on the barrier island and destroying entire neighborhoods completely.
A before and after comparison of the Funtown Pier in Seaside Park. The photo on the left was taken minutes before the final evacuation of the barrier island ahead of Sandy. The photo on the right was what the beach and pier looked like after Sandy. All Photos by Phil Stilton.
Weather Service’s preliminary estiunderneath, there was some windmate. That agency also reported sev- driven rain inside from the top, howeral wind gusts in Ocean County at ever, [the carousel] is made out of close to 90 mph, and a buoy located wood. There’s no power, no heat. It’s near the entrance to New York Harbor inside of a building and with the moisissued a record wave height of 32.5 ture, we don’t know what’s going to feet at 8:50 pm, just before a time happen—we don’t know if it warped or that multiple witnesses present on the if there are any damages yet.” barrier island at that time attribute to “It doesn’t look like any of the a fast moving storm surge that elevat- rides on the pier are salvageable. It ed water levels in or near their homes doesn’t look it,” Mr. Storino stated, drastically in a short period. adding that their storage warehouse in With much of the New Jersey eastern Toms River Township took on shore without power or communica“three to four feet of water, so the tions capabilities, the extent of the rides that were in the warehouse were damage was unclear until the break of underwater. A couple of the smaller day, when Mr. Storino learned the kiddie rides were in the warehouse— news via the images being transmitted some were old, some were new, but online through his smartphone by nothing is really salvageable.” The Star Jet rollercoaster lies in the Atlantic Ocean after being ripped off the upper deck those who remained on the island One ride that he was particularly of the Casino Pier. Photo by Phil Stilton. through the night. interested in trying to save or restore It wasn’t until October 31st, when was the Enterprise, a horizontal to President Barack Obama and Governor vertical moving Ferris wheel with 20 Chris Christie were flying in Marine gondolas that utilized centrifugal force One, that Mr. Storino was first able to make it back to his family’s amusement learned of the horror waiting for him center. By Erik Weber at his family’s amusement pier. “The whole upper sec“Where I was, we had no power, so tion of the pier is going to Three weeks after Superstorm Sandy need to come down—in pounded through the shoreline, board- initially I learned about the damage through my cellphone—people were fact, part of what’s there is walk and amusement areas, here, starting to collapse and will Vincent Storino, managing member of just sending me messages,” he said. Casino Beach Pier, LLC, took a helicop- A week earlier, upon seeing the Euro- probably fall in soon,” he pean weather model for Hurricane reported. “The ocean and ter flight to view the full scope of the Sandy’s path, the pier manager got the waves have been redamage to the Casino Pier. nervous. lentless since the storm.” Since the morning after the storm “Then when they were saying that “The aerial pictures do made landfall here, on October 30th, storm was going to make a left-hand not describe the damage images of the Jet Star rollercoaster turn, that scared me because a storm that it did—everyone shows ride partly submerged in the surf behas never come straight in from the the rollercoaster in the side the shattered end of the pier east like this one did,” he said. “I ocean, and the rollercoaster Storino, left, looks at an aerial photo of the pier with became one of the main icons of insurance adjuster Chris Aldrich. Photo by Phil Stilton. in the ocean is minimal to Sandy’s wrath as area residents with- knew it was going to push a tremendous amount of water to us.” the damage sustained to out power but with battery-powered the pier,” the pier manager continued. to achieve its effect and is named cellular smartphones and national and Mr. Storino said that his family prepared for the storm both at their Casi- “Did it fall off the pier or is it still rest- after the U.S.S. Enterprise from the international news organizations all no Pier and Jenkinson’s Beach Board- ing on the pier below the water? I flocked to the online social media original Star Trek television series of walk in Point Pleasant Beach the same don’t know. To me the position it’s website Facebook for on the ground the 1960s. It was manufactured by way they would any other storm. sitting in right now, it shifted northinformation as the area began to first HUSS Park Attractions in 1972 and assess the crushing blow the combina- “Rides that we were able to get off of west, so it’s kind of inland and a bit came to the Casino Pier from Coney the pier were brought to our warenorth of the pier.” tion storm system wrought. Island, New York in the middle of the house in Toms River,” he said. “Some “The status of the carousel is unThis was how the pier manager first last decade. rides were stored in the Centrifuge known,” he continued, referring to the The famous mock-haunted dark [ride, located on the over 100-year-old Dr. Floyd Moreland ride located at the end of the pier, the eastern portion of the Historic Dentzel/Looff Carousel with Stillwalk Manor, “is gone. It just disappier].” music provided by the only continupeared. I found one of the cars from Late in the evening of ously operating Wurlitzer Military Band the ride on the beach, washed up near October 29th, Sandy Organ in the state, present in Seaside Jenkinson’s in Point Pleasant,” reportmade landfall and caused Heights since 1932. “I’ve been reading ed Mr. Storino. damage to homes and things on the internet and getting e“Everybody’s focused on the rollerinfrastructure ranging mails saying the carousel is fine. We coaster in the ocean, but there’s so into the billions of dollars don’t know that the carousel is fine. much more damage than that—we still in the state alone, acWe’re doing everything we can to don’t know the full extent, and we’re cording to the National protect it. It did get some water from finding more and more each day,” he continued. “We hope we have the Storino looks at the wreckage of his pier from a helicopter over the Atlanproper insurance; we’re just starting tic Ocean. Photo by Phil Stilton.
Aerial photograph shows damage to Casino Pier after Sandy. Photo by Phil Stilton.
to meet with our insurance company. The outpouring of support is overwhelming; it’s hard to take in. We’re fortunate that all of our family, we’re all safe, we had some damage and we don’t know anyone who perished in the storm. In this area, I’m amazed that there’s not several hundred fatalities.” The Storino family’s insurance firm for both the Casino Pier and Jenkinson’s Beach Boardwalk is Andrew K. Knox and Company, of Toms River. Despite the heavy damage inflicted upon Casino Pier, the pier manager had his sights set on the future. “We’re going to do our best to try and get open as much as we can as soon as we can. There are no preliminary plans; it’s still out of our hands at this time,” he said, thanking both Seaside Heights and Point Pleasant Beach boroughs for their help and support. “The plan is to get something open of some sort in both towns, as much as we can in Point Pleasant Beach,
providing the town has to reconstruct the boardwalk. Seaside Heights has already demolished their boardwalk; I’m pretty confident they can get that [rebuilt] in time.” Before stepping out of the helicopter, he stated, “we want to build bigger and better than before, but that’s up to the insurance company and the professionals. We might be able to open the lower portion of the pier, but right now I just don’t know. It all depends on the extent of the pier. We might have to rebuild the entire pier. It might have to be rebuilt in concrete for seismic ratings.” “At this point I just don’t have the answers,” he said. The helicopter flight was arranged for Mr. Storino through Patrick Day of Liberty Helicopters by Chris Aldrich, public insurance adjuster with the Andrew K. Knox and Company. The Storino family’s Point Pleasant Beach amusement center is run by Vincent Storino’s cousin, Anthony Storino.
Photo by Phil Stilton
Much of the effort to restore power in Ocean County was directed from Jackson Township at the JCP&L Mobile Commend Center stationed at Six Flag’s Hurricane Harbor parking lot. The site was home to hundreds of replacement telephone poles, transformers and everything linemen from all over the country needed to restore power back to the community. Each morning convoys of trucks and supplies entered and exited the compound, which many called home for nearly three full weeks before power was finally restored.
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After Hurricane Sandy struck, residents from all walks of life in Jackson pitched in to help our neighbors. Initially the relief efforts went into helping local families who were without power, water and food. The Jackson Office of Emergency Management under the direction of Mayor Mike Reina distributed food and water to local residents in need. The girls of the Jackson Alliance soccer team helped the mayor by distributing the supplies curbside, outside of town hall. The volunteer efforts came as many of the volunteers themselves were still without power. Once the situation had settled in the township, locals began looking beyond our borders to help. Eric Alders and his â€˜dojo familyâ€™ at the Karate Dojo worked diligently with the township to raise donations and gather supplies for the hardest hit areas of the county. The group, again coordinated by the township OEM and Mayor Reina delivered multiple trailer loads of supplies to the King Of Kings church in Manahawkin, a staging area and shelter for the southern portion of the county. When the Devils and Gunners teams of the Jackson Soccer Club found out they were hosting a game with a Staten Island soccer team from the most hard hit areas of the island, the girls and their families decided to raise donations for the girls of the Staten Island United when they came to town. The girls took donations at Stop & Shop and used that money to buy food, toiletries and also give the team clothing and other living essentials two weeks after the hurricane hit.
By Phil Stilton
nically non-partisan, elections are usually always partisan affairs. On Election Day, it was a clean The ‘independent’ team resweep as Jackson’s Republican ceived voter support from local endorsed ticket of incumbent Ken Democrats, but Jackson Township Bressi and newcomers Barry has traditionally favored RepubliCalogero and Rob Nixon went can candidates, historically. home with an overwhelming victoNewcomer Rob Nixon was ry on Election Day. Their chalpleased with the results. “I’m so lengers, Bonnie Barrington and amazingly humbled and grateful Ray Cattonar, running as indeto everybody who made this pospendents, were unable to break sible,” Nixon said. “Ken, Barry and the 15% mark individually. I, we didn’t win this alone.” He The win solidifies the Jackson went on to thank the group’s supRepublican Club’s prior 3-2 major- porters who spent hours making ity with full control of the Jackson calls and talking to residents Township council. While Jackabout their campaign. son’s form of government is techElection newbie Barry Calogero
used his many years of experience in managing township affairs by serving on the township zoning board and current commissioner also looks forward to taking his seat on the dais. “It’s an honor and privilege to serve Jackson and I thank everyone for this opportunity,” said Barry Calogero. “We ran a positive ticket and a positive campaign in everything we’ve done,” said incumbent Council President Ken Bressi. ”It was a complete team effort and running with Barry and Rob was a complete privilege. It’s an honor to serve Jackson again and I look forward to it.” The trio and their supporters celebrated the victory in their campaign headquarters which was located in the former greeting
card store in the Shop Rite plaza. Their opponents ran on an independent ticket and mostly anti -administration platform, launching investigations and allegations into many aspects of township government including the mayor’s office and the police department. At times during the campaign, the pair seemed to not understand exactly who their opponents were. Their campaign focused around attacks on Mayor Mike Reina and the local media. Earlier in the year, Cattonar received signed petitions from 1,000 residents seeking to see inhouse legal representation for the township. The status of that petition is still up in the air and due to accuracy errors, may not make it on next year’s ballot according to Mayor Mike Reina.
Former Jackson School Board member Scott Sargent and current School Board member Barbara Fiero at the Republican Campaign Headquarters as club officer Bill Allman announces results to the gathering. Top Right: (L-R) Ken Bressi, Rob Nixon, Barry Calogero.
Days before Hurricane Sandy struck his district, Congressman Chris Smith visited the Jackson Republican Campaign Headquarters where he spoke to shoppers outside of Shop-Rite on County Line Road. He then spent the rest of his time before the election tending to matters in northern Ocean and southern Monmouth Counties. Smith said of his victory, that he looks forward to serving those in the newly shaped 4th district. Smith, now 59, has served in the House of Representatives since 1981.
By Phil Stilton
In the days following Christie’s praise of the President, many on Despite his trick or treat visit to the right debated whether he was the Jersey Shore on Halloween abandoning Romney or just putafter Hurricane Sandy reshaped ting New Jersey’s needs ahead of the county coastline, Ocean politics. County residents still overwhelmPolitico reported on Christies ingly rejected President Obama defiant defense of his actions. “I on Election Day. wouldn’t call what I did an emThe President was welcomed brace of Barack Obama,” Politico with open arms and bestowed reported. “I know that’s become with praise by Chris Christie, our the wording of it, but the fact of often hard-nosed Republican gov- the matter is, you know, I’m a ernor of New Jersey. guy who tells the truth all the While many in the Republican time. And if the president of the community saw the Governor’s United States did something praise as an endorsement of the good, I was going to say he did Democrat president’s handling of something good and give him Sandy days before a national credit for it.” election, the warm and cordial While much of New Jersey emotions between the two men swooned for the President in the fell upon deaf ears in the Republi- polls on Election Day, Ocean can stronghold of Ocean County County’s majority rejected the which was instrumental in ChrisObama-Biden ticket. Mitt Romtie’s own election two years ago. ney and Paul Ryan received Pundits on the right claimed 58.25% of all Ocean County votes Christie was sabotaging the Rom- and outvoted Democrats by a ney presidential campaign in ormargin of 43,449 votes. der to set the stage for a potenA few weeks later, Chris Christial election run in 2016 of his tie was ribbed about his change own. Pundits on the left claimed of heart by fellow New Jersey Christie was setting his own path resident, Jon Stewart. Christie towards White House by present- also admitted he had hugged with ing himself as a bi-partisan leader Bruce Springsteen and the two for the future. are now friends. Vice President Joe Biden and Lt. Governor Kim Guadagno survey the damage caused by Hurricane Sandy with Office of Emergency Management and local officials in Seaside Heights and Seaside Park, N.J. on Sunday, Nov. 18, 2012. (Governor's Office/Tim Larsen)
By Phil Stilton
view with JTOWN Magazine. “My opponents say I’m too old, but Sheriff William Polhemus will get they don’t say anything about to keep his job, thanks to Ocean Lautenberg. I’ve been doing this County voters. In a race were a very long time and proud of the attention seemed to be focused accomplishments we made during mostly on the age of the 84 year that time,” he said. “This is a an old sheriff from Seaside Heights, administrative position, almost voters decided it was not an islike a CEO of a company, but I sue. don’t think they know that, I don’t Throughout the campaign, think they understand fully what local media and supporters of the position is.” Polhemus’ opponents said he was Polhemus won the election, too old to keep his doing his job. receiving 56% of votes compared It was a claim not taken lightly by to 41% by his opponent Bob ArmPolhemus and one he said held strong. John McMenamin reno bearing in a pre-election inter- ceived 2.75% of the vote.
This year, the Jackson School Board will have a new face after an election win by Adam Silvan. Adam is the board’s first new member since Theresa Schiazza and Tracey Murnane joined the board in 2009. Murnane was the odd candidate out this year, finishing fourth in a race for just three seats. “I am looking forward to working with the residents of Jackson and the current school board to keep the Township Schools at the level of excellence that we have all come to expect and deserve,” Silvan said. Photos: (L to R) Adam Silvan, Theresa Schiazza, Marvin Krakower, Tracey Murnane.
Members of the Jackson Lacrosse league show their support for America’s Wounded Warriors at the 2012 Wounded Warrior Parade in October. The annual event is hosted by the Central Jersey Pistol and Rifle Club of Jackson.
A total of 7,000 National Guard troops were mobilized for Hurricane Sandy relief, with more than 4,000 being deployed in New Jersey and New York. In Ocean County, guard units provided 24 hour security in the hardest hit areas. The guard worked in 12 hour shifts from the time of their arrival. On the barrier island, the guard details assisted local police with protecting properties and keeping out looters and scrappers. On Thanksgiving Day, the soldiers were treated to a feast, courtesy of the Silverton First Aid for those stationed in Ortley Beach. The guard had been using the station as a base of operations during their mission here at the Jersey Shore. Silver First Aid Vice President Kevin Geoghegan said the company was honored and proud to donate their facility to the guard. “They needed a place to call home while they’re helping out our residents and we’re happy to do it.” Captain Ryan Bailey of the 102nd Cavalry and his officers served the enlisted men as is the custom in the military for such occasions. “These men deserve this!” he said.
For the first time, the flags of all five branches of the United States Armed Services at the Jackson Veterans Memorial Garden. A memorial service was held on Veterans Day to celebrate America’s current and past military service members. The garden is the brainchild of Charles Garofano and Ken Bressi, both Vietnam era veterans who thought a memorial was needed for all who have served our country across all time periods. “This is for all veterans, not just war veterans,” said Ken Bressi. “They all made the sacrifices away from their homes and families to serve our country. While many did not serve during war, they knew the call could have come at any time.”
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By Christa Riddle Photos by Phil Stilton
Photos by Phil Stilton
keeping those communities secure. On November 5th, nearly 300 “When hurricanes Katrina and state troopers from around the Andrew struck, many New Jersey country were sworn in to protect officers selflessly helped with the and serve New Jersey, just days rescue and recovery efforts in after Hurricane Sandy struck. Louisiana, Florida and the other Officers from Pennsylvania, hard-hit Gulf States,” said GoverMaryland, Massachusetts, Vernor Christie. “Now we have come mont, Louisiana, Mississippi, full circle in our mutual support Michigan, Florida, Maine and and service, with large continothers were given assignments in gents of officers coming here Monmouth and Ocean Counties’ from Louisiana, Mississippi and waterfront. Florida – we thank every single They were deployed from one of them. This is a proud moPoint Pleasant to Long Beach ment for law enforcement, and Island to assist local law enforce- another example of how people ment, the New Jersey State Pofrom across the country are seelice and national guard with ing the devastation wrought by the storm, coming together, and helping our state and region pull together through this period of recovery.” “In 2005, the New Jersey State Police sent troopers to Louisiana to help with law enforcement and recovery efforts post Hurricane Katrina” said State Police Colonel Rick Fuentes. “I would like to thank the men and women of these agencies for their selfless efforts.”
On Saturday, November 3rd, Lieutenant Michael Habel of the Massachusetts State Police, along with his contingent of 25 fellow officers, received word that they would head to the hurricaneravaged areas of New Jersey Shore the following Saturday. Through the Office of Emergency Management (OEM), calls for help after disasters such as Hurricane Sandy are routed to all state police departments throughout the country, with a standard request to send 25 officers to assist during the time of need. “Although we had been on standby before during Hurricane Katrina and the Alabama tornadoes, this was the first time we were actually deployed to help,” shares Lieutenant Habel. By OEM order, Lieutenant Habel and the Massachusetts State Police were split up into three groups upon arriving in New Jersey on November 10th, heading off to areas needing assistance, such as Brick, Monmouth County, and Hazlet. On Tuesday, November 13th, the 25 officers reunited and were dispatched by the OEM to Ortley Beach to serve under the command of Chief Michael Mastronardy and the Toms River Police Department. “When we arrived, the area’s people were calm be-
cause time had passed since the hurricane,” recalls Lieutenant Habel. “They were resigned to the fact that they had lost everything, and they were strong and ready to move ahead.” Although Lieutenant Habel and the same contingent of officers had helped in Springfield Massachusetts, the second largest city in the state, after its 2011 tornado, he was shocked by the devastation Hurricane Sandy left behind. “After the tornado, there was water and wind damage, but this was much more widespread, affecting so many people. I was amazed at the number of refrigerators tipped over and displaced by the hurricane’s flooding. I had no idea they would float because they are so large. We found ourselves helping in any way we could, just doing what people needed. We moved so many refrigerators, we felt like appliance delivery guys,” remembers Lieutenant Habel. In addition to uprighting refrigerators, Lieutenant Habel and the other officers from Massachusetts assisted with moving furniture, carting personal belongings, and getting residents back into their homes during phase one of Toms River’s threephase re-entry plan. Their main focus was security and patrolling to prevent looting, which they did not encounter at all.
tor Fred Rasiewicz and all township being unable to connect due to a personnel; JCP&L and its team of loss of power and cell tower signals. out-of-state co-workers; the fire “After the snowstorm, I went outdepartments and police department side at 3:15 a.m. to assess the situof Jackson Township; and all those ation, climbing over and under the who volunteered and are still volun- downed trees in my driveway, trying teering their time and services to to get to the road to get a signal so restoring the township. I could call and find out what was To help with the arduous going on. Around 15 minutes later, I cleanups that loom ahead over the saw headlights, which turned out to next several months, the township be a Jackson police officer coming has issued a storm exemption at to check in on me because I was public works, where commercial not at the OEM office and they were trucks and vehicles with commercial not able to contact me.” license plates can now drop off To provide township-wide brush and debris. Mayor Reina and communication during emergency the township’s officials are also adsituations involving power losses, dressing the lack of accurate, curMayor Reina and his team are lookrent information available during ing to implement a “close line commassive area power outages. In munication,” where each segment light of this problem during Hurriof the Jackson community will have cane Sandy and the subsequent a block leader who receives current, ing, food, water and flashlights to By Christa Riddle snowstorm, the mayor and his team accurate information and updates sustain those in need. Many volunare planning alternative means of from those directly in charge of the The one-two punch delivered by the teered their time, hour after hour, contact when communication via the situation. Information will then pass havoc of Hurricane Sandy and sub- to distribute supplies and clear dedown the chain of command and bris from roads and properties. Oth- township’s usual routes of public sequent 12-inch snowstorm could announcements, phone calls, text filter out through predetermined ers opened their homes, providing not knock down the spirited comcommunity groups so that everyone munity of Jackson. Still reeling from warmth, homecooked meals, wash- messages, website updates, email blasts and social media postings are is connected with direct, clear mesers and dryers, hot showers and the hurricane that pummeled the not an option. sages. sleeping quarters whenever it was community on October 29th, the In a township covering As Jackson and the surneeded to whomever needed it, no township and surrounding areas 100 square miles with many rural rounding communities begin the credit sought and no questions found themselves clobbered yet long road of reconstruction and asked. At the supplies trailer, people areas, it critical to keep everyone again as a snowstorm smothered accurately informed and up-to-date rebuilding of structures, businesses left their phone numbers in case homes and businesses only nine when power outages arise in emer- and lives, strong spirits and unificaanyone needed anything. days later. Adding insult upon injugency situations. Communication is tion will be essential to progress. Although too humble to ry, many had not yet had their powchallenging yet key in times like this Mayor Reina remains confident that admit to his and his family’s own er restored after losing it from the to provide a sense of security and his community has already proven offerings during this trying time, extensive damage inflicted by the themselves up to the challenge and word of Mayor Reina’s dedication to order while avoiding the hysteria hurricane; repairs to damaged his community has spread. His door that ensues from media sensational- ready to help. roads, utility wires, buildings, busiism and rumors. Mayor Reina expewas always open to those needing nesses and homes had only just rienced first-hand the frustration of begun when the heavy snow added food, warmth and amenities-- his generator kept his home partially a new layer of problems to the running during his family’s 12 days mess. How did the community of without power. As part of a convoy Jackson respond? By coming out in of trucks with trailers attached, the droves to help, and not just in their mayor made multiple trips from Donato Cocca, Frank Castronovo and Jackson to Manahawkin and Tuckerown township. “The determination Carlo Castronova bring decades of and strength shown by the Jackson ton to deliver supplies desperately experience owning, managing and needed by those severely affected community would make any mayor working pizzerias to Jackson as they proud,” says Jackson Mayor Michael by the superstorm, then helped tend open their newest, Destino’s, located to those affected by the subsequent Reina. “This town pulled together on County Line Road in the Roasa Plaza N'oreaster and its foot of heavy like one huge team, going above Mall, next to Sam’s Barber Shop. The snow. He also assisted with clearing and beyond more than I have ever trio also own Giuseppe’s in Old Bridge. seen before. Not just a handful, but debris and cutting up fallen trees to Carlo Castronova, once a chef at clear roadways. For 36 hours volumes and volumes of people celebrity restaurants such as Robert straight, Mayor Reina did not return from this great community came DeNiro’s Ago and Ashton Kutcher’s forward to help here in Jackson, as home after the initial arrival of HurDolce, manages the Jackson restauwell as in surrounding towns and in ricane Sandy. Laura, his wife, volunrant. teered at the supplies trailer, locations along the shore impacted Castronova, the youngest of five brothers grew up making Italian food. His parents, Frank and Dora brought worst of all. No matter what people amazed that many just needed their recipes straight from Italy and have serving Italian food here in New lost, they were still asking, ‘How can someone to talk to, someone to Jersey for 40 years at their Sayreville Santino’s restaurant. The family now listen. I help? What can I do?’ There are owns eateries in West Orange, Sayreville, Livingston, Millstone, West Orange It was important to Mayor 54,000 people in this community of and Jackson. Reina to take this opportunity to ours, and I don’t think I received “We prepare many of our generations-old recipes in the traditional southern extend thanks to all that helped the even a handful of complaints during Italian style using fresh and wholesome ingredients including Grande MozzaJackson community pull through this hardship.” rella Cheese, No Fillers, No Preservatives and No Additives, Fresh Packed ToMayor Reina noticed peo- difficult time: the tireless first rematoes, Extra Virgin Olive Oil and Boar’s Head Cold Cut Meats,” Castronova sponders and the Office of Emerple offering assistance in any way said . “Here at Destino’s we stock our kitchen with the highest quality seathey could, from donating whatever gency Management; the resilient cash their pockets held to collecting residents and businesses; the defood, meats, poultry and produce, but we will never forget that you, our cuspartment of public works, its direcendless supplies of blankets, clothtomer, are the most important ingredient to our success.
By Lt. Steven Laskiewicz The following is a summary of the Jackson Township Police Department's response to the storm. There were no injuries or casualties as a direct result of the storm that have been reported at this time. Police Officers, Fire and First Aid personnel had responded to numerous first aid calls and medical emergencies in the aftermath of the storm, responses have been made more difficult due to the conditions and blockages of many of the townâ€™s roadways and lack of power in approximately 90% of the town. Also, Jackson Police Officers had been dispatched to over forty welfare checks of residents with medical or other conditions as family and friends from out of the area have contacted the police department to check on them after not being able to make contact themselves.
Detective Frank Mendez on Patrol in Seaside Heights near the Star Jet Rollercoaster.
There had been many difficult challenges that the agency has faced in the aftermath of the storm. Some of them were: Maintaining staffing levels to keep officers on the road and available to respond to crises has been a difficult challenge. This is an incident on a scale that the Jackson Police Department, and all of New Jersey has not had to deal with before. Officers were kept on an overtime basis to answer multiple emergency calls and to maintain order and public safety as residents started venturing out after the weather cleared. Chief Matthew Kunz and the Police Command Staff of the agency had meetings and briefings multiple times each day to evaluate the status of the clean up and repair efforts going on in town. These meetings also included Mayor Michael Reina, Council President Ken Bressi, Department of Public Works Director Fred Rasciewicz, Office of Emergency Management Coordinator Barry Olejarz and Deputy OEM Coordinator Ken Burns. During the early hours after the storm, it was discovered that some local gas stations were running on their own generators to pump gas. After responding to several disturbance calls involving people fighting each other and threatening gas attendants over getting fuel, it was decided that it was necessary to detail officers at
these locations to keep order and safeguard people. As tree service and power company trucks began coming into the area to do clean up and do repair work, it was then decided that fuel needed to be conserved and rationed so emergency personnel and crews who were working had access to the fuel to continue working and would not be hampered in the immediate clean up. As more fuel became available at more locations, it was opened up to the general public and officers were detailed at several locations so they could assist in maintaining order. The overwhelming majority of people who came out were cooperative with the efforts and officers only had to respond to a few disturbance calls and made one arrest at an incident. The driving ban was also put into effect and the township roads were closed in an attempt to urge people to stay home and not drive so all the downed trees and wires could be cleaned up and emergency personnel would be able to move throughout town easier. The roads were very hazardous at this time and there were no traffic controls in town. During this time period, officers had to respond to several motor vehicle crashes with injuries at uncontrolled intersections. Without starting the cleanup in this manner to get obstructions cleared, repairs and restorations could not even begin. On the first day after the storm, officers were issuing summons in an attempt to accomplish this as many people refused to cooperate with the clean up efforts. This ban was lifted the following day but a curfew of 7pm to 7am was urged to keep drivers off of the darkened roadways which were not all cleared of debris yet in an attempt to prevent injuries on the roads. This allowed emergency personnel who had to work on the clean up efforts or report to work to help others, travel.
Sergeant Chris Parise was instrumental in making contact with JCP&L management to accelerate the pace of getting the company’s tree and power crews into town to clear up the roads and begin to restore power. Along with Sergeant Brian Geoghagen, they implemented a plan where JCP&L service crews were teamed up with police officers who escorted them directly to the multiple problem areas in town. Township Department of Public Works crews also worked together with the department to clear township and county roads so the town could be opened up for travel. During this time, we also tried to get available information and updates posted on the Police Department’s Facebook page so those with access would be aware of the situation the town was facing and ongoing clean up efforts. The officers who worked during these efforts should be commended as well as their families who they left at home as a large percentage of the agency worked 16 hour or longer shifts and are still working extended shifts at this time as all the power has not been restored in town. Several officers suffered significant damage to their own homes and spent those hours away from their families to perform their duties here for Jackson Township. The agency would like to thank the efforts of all the police officers, fire, first aid, DPW employees, all other emergency responders and volunteers as well as all the power and tree service crews who are helping to get Jackson Township back up and running. We would also like to thank Mayor Reina, Councilman Bressi, the Jackson Township council and all other township department directors for their work and cooperation with the department during this difficult time.
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The Jackson Hole Gang hosted the annual Purgatory in the Pines NJ Sass State Championship at the Central Jersey Rifle & Pistol Club here in Jackson. Cowboys and Cowgirls from all over the northeast came to the range to show off their sharpshootin’ skills on a variety of 1800’s themed ranges. Local boy scouts helped out by collectin’ the brass and serving up chow for the nearly one hundred who came out dressed in their Victorian Sunday best.
The girls of the Jackson Jaguar Pee Wee cheer squad have done it again. They are the 2012 American Youth Football and Cheer National champions. The girls travelled to Florida this month to compete and came home victorious.
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The Jackson Bombers travel baseball team finished their fall season with an impressive 10-1 record. In the semi-final game of the USABL championships, they defeated the Freehold Predators 13-3 behind the pitching of John Nimeth. Nimeth struck out 10 batters in the game. On Offense, Tim Diffy, Lance Hobbs and Randy Steen led the bombers. The next day, the Bombers went out to beat the Brick Bulldogs 13-0 to win the championship. The boys have come a long way since their spring season. On offense, Jackson was led by Ryan Crowley, Matt Potok, Shane Hickey and Nimeth. Nick Beetel, of the 2012 Holbrook State Championship team kept the Bulldogs down with a strikeout laden shutout. The Fall team consisted of Sean Laverty, Lance Hobbs, Jake Daddio, John Nimeth, Randy Steen, Shane Hickey, Ryan Crowley, Tim Duffy, Matt Potok, and Nick Beetle, Tyler Ince and Zak Rogacki, and coaches, John Nimeth, Pat Duffy, Rich Laverty, and Lou Rogacki.
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Jackson’s Karate Dojo congratulated Cole Stephens as the school’s newest black belt member after a seven hour long test. He becomes a 1st degree black belt. Dan Chandler and Ryan Palmer both advanced to the rank of 2nd degree black belt. Congratulations.
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Jackson U10 Gunners win 2012 Girls Premier Frederick Cup soccer tournament in Kirkwood, Delaware. Congratulations coaches Bruce Washburn, Lenny Duarte and Amu Magaya, along with Morgan, Jordyn, Maura, Nikole, Kaitlyn, Hannah, Krista, Kristina, Destiny, Shannon, Sofia, Hailey, Jessica and Cierra!
Despite finishing the regular season as the undefeated Class A South champions in the Shore Conference, the Jaguars came up short in the post season. The Jags started the Shore Conference Tournament strong, defeating Central (3-0) and Wall (1-0), but lost to Holmdel (3 -1) in the semi-final. In the NJSIAA Group IV Central tournament, Jackson went all the way to the final where they lost to Monroe (31). Jackson was the top seed in both tournaments and the #1 ranked team in the Shore Conference for 2012. The Jags finished their season with an impressive 23-2 record. This yearâ€™s graduating seniors from the team include Sal Biliancione, Matthew Fryc, Cristian Jiminez, Brian Peterson, Thomas Beyer, Oscar Rojas, Thomas DeNoville, Ed Guippone, Stephen McAllister, Ryan Young and Joe Redding.
The girls of Jackson Memorial and Jackson Libertyâ€™s field hockey teams finished their 2012 season. Liberty finished with a record of 98-2 while Memorial was 11-9-1. When it comes to bragging rights, Jackson Memorial takes the honors this year when they defeated Liberty 1-0 on September 28th.
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The Jackson Jaguar Junior Midgets celebrated a 12-8 win over Middletown to claim the title of 2012 Jersey Shore AYF CHAMPIONS! The boys traveled to Disney to compete for a National Championship, but came up short after an impressive opening round win. They are the first Jaguar AYF football team to make the trip down to Disneyworld and Florida as league champions!
By Dean Pinto On a cold and blustery day, the two high schools would once again meet for the grid-iron bragging rights of Jackson. In a year of firsts for the Liberty program, their first year making playoffs and having started off the season with the best ever start in that 6 year history, their expectations were high. The Jaguars came into the day having lost a consolation game and after a posting a losing record this season. Many felt that this was the year for Liberty to shake the monkey off their back and continue the season of firsts, by getting that elusive win over Memorial. Memorial would start the game on offense with sophomore #16 Joe Demaio under center and was moving the ball down field until a turnover, fumble recovered by #40 Jeremy Sousa on Liberty’s 36 yard line. It was senior day at Liberty, and senior quarterback #10 Bob Davies would start the game for the Lions but would have a rough go with two interceptions in the first quarter, the first made by #6 Vinny Celidonio, the second and more costly one by Jags #64 Max Mondello. The second interception would lead to a 1 yard Memorial rushing touchdown by Celidonio for the 6 point lead, after the wind would “block” the PAT by freshman kicker Dan Van Klef. Despite bringing in #5 Matt Castronuova as quarterback, the Lions would go 3 and out on their next and last possession in the first
quarter after being physical dominated at the line of scrimmage. The second quarter would yield no first downs for the Lions on their four offensive possessions and they had a negative rushing total of -15 yards, while the Jaguars would put up another 6 points on a 1st and goal from just outside the goal line by #20 Ken Bradley on their third possession of the quarter and after a 2 point conversion attempt by Demaio was denied, Memorial had a 12-0 lead. The Jags offense was powered by their junior running back, #34 Khani Glover who was able to hit the big holes opened up by the physical offensive line of Memorial. The only bright spot for Liberty was the interception of a pass by Castronuova with about 7:40 left in the half. The 3rd quarter would see more of the same, with Memorial scoring two more touchdowns, the first on a 20 yard completion from Demaio to #7 Marcus Ademilola and the second on an 8 yard run by Glover. Van Clef would add the extra point this time and give Memorial the 25-0 lead. The 4th quarter would see nothing change as Memorial continued to pound the ball up the middle and after a penalty and a 1st and goal from the 5, #24 Justin Gullo would score yet another Jaguars touchdown and on the failed 2 point conversion would see their lead increase to 31 points. This would account for all of the scoring of the day with the final being, Jaguars 31, Liberty 0.
with Liberty as both quarterbacks, #5, Barneys and Castronuova would The Jackson Liberty Lions headed up cough up the ball, but the turnover by Liberty would prove costly as #15, to Middlesex County in the school’s Jake Pero would break out on a 76 first ever playoff appearance against 9 a tough Colonia Patriots, team in the rushing touchdown with under rd NJ Division Central Group 4 matchup. minutes remaining in the 3 quarter. Things would get interesting as the The Lions offense had a rough Lions kept battling and after two start and one play after a bad snap personal foul penalties against Coloand loss of 3 yards, they turned the nia, Matt Castronuova was able to ball over on their second possession nd of the game. The defense seemed to reach the end zone on a 2 and 4 from the 6, with Mike Ostrowski addrespond when they had their backs up against the wall and twice stopped ing the PAT.th In the 4 quarter, the Patriots the Patriots in the red zone for a would see #23 C.J. Cimiluca on a 2nd scoreless first quarter. and 6 from the 10 put up another With 6:59 remaining in the setouchdown for the Colonia 21-7 lead. cond quarter, Colonia was able to Liberty would get the ball back but move the ball to the 6 yard line of once again fall victim to a turnover Liberty, where #5 Trent Barneys after a bad snap and recovery by would run it in on a quarterback keeper for the first touchdown of the Colonia. With 4 minutes left in the game, Colonia was unable to move game and the PAT kick would be the ball thanks due to hard tackles made for the Patriots 7-0 lead. made by #34 Justin Goodman, and Liberty was unable to get much #55 Chris Cruz. The Lions would also going on the offensive side of the ball, with #30 Bruce Almodovar hav- keep things close as they were able ing 50 rushing yards, #5 Matt Castro- to get within a touchdown of tying nuova only 11 yards and 1 pass com- the game on a 43 yard pass completion touchdown to #44 Ahmed Fospletion for 7 yards to #40 Jeremy Sousa. The defense would bend, but ter. The game would end at Colonia 28, Liberty 14. not break in the 2nd quarter holding The Jaguars ended their season the Patriots to the 1 TD and that with two losses, but still finished their would be all the scoring going into season above .500 for the first time halftime. Early in the 3rd quarter, the Patri- in school history with a record of 6-4 to pave the way for future success. ots would trade fumbles/turnovers
By Dean Pinto
They say behind every good man is a good woman. It’s also true that behind every good football team, there is a group of good women who cheer them on. This year, the girls of the Jackson Liberty cheer squad were on the sidelines despite the cold, wind and rain. Without them, how could the boys have had their first winning season or first playoff appearance in school history? JTOWN would like to congratulate the boys and girls at Jackson Liberty for achieving this milestone. See you next season!