Port Times Record

Every home in the U.S. is now eligible to order 4 free at-home COVID-19 test kits. Orders will usually ship in 7 to 12 days.

1. Visit http://covidtests.gov

2. Enter your contact details and shipping information.

3. Click Check Out Now.

4. Verify your information is correct and select Place My Order.People who can’t access the website or who have trouble ordering online can call a hotline — 1-800-232-0233 — to order their free tests.

The tests available for order:

Are rapid antigen at-home tests, not PCR

Can be taken anywhere

Give results within 30 minutes (no lab drop-off required)

Work whether or not you have COVID-⁠19 symptoms

Work whether or not you are up to date on your COVID-⁠19 vaccines

Are also referred to as self-tests or over-the-counter (OTC) tests

Take an at-⁠home test:

If you begin having COVID-⁠19 symptoms like fever, sore throat, runny nose, or loss of taste or smell, or

At least 5 days after you come into close contact with someone with COVID-⁠19, or

When you’re going to gather with a group of people, especially those who are at risk of severe disease or may not be up to date on their COVID-⁠19 vaccines.

What if you test Positive?

A positive at-⁠home test result means that the test found the virus, and you very likely have COVID-⁠19.

If you test positive on your at-⁠home test, follow the latest CDC guidance for isolation.

What if you test Negative?

A negative at-⁠home test result means that the test did not find the virus, and you may have a lower risk of spreading COVID-19 to others. Check your test kit’s instructions for specific next steps. If you test negative, you should test again within a few days with at least 24 hours between tests.

If you test negative, follow the latest CDC guidance for self-⁠testing.

Testing is only one step you can take to protect yourself, friends, family, and others. Everyone is encouraged to get up to date with their COVID-⁠19 vaccinations. Visit vaccines.gov to find a vaccine or booster near you. Wear a well-fitted mask when gathering indoors and maintain 6 feet of distance between people.

by -
0 79
Katy Dornick and her student. Photo from Andrew Harris

Comsewogue Special Education teacher Katy Dornick has been working in the district for 12 years, and is a proud graduate of the district, too.

Since her first day working with children with special needs she felt at home. 

“Growing up with a sister with special needs I felt that I can relate to the families and be passionate to help their child succeed,” Dornick said. “I take pride in what I do, and I can relate to each family on a personal level.” 

After many years of waiting to teach the students most in need within the district, she finally got a chance to move up to the high school and teach that special class. 

“This is by far the most difficult class to teach,” said fellow teacher Andrew Harris. “It involves a lot of time, energy, and people management to run the class-and that is before you ever set foot inside the classroom and start teaching.”

He added that in this role, there is a lot of paperwork and medical knowledge required by the teacher. 

“It takes someone with a very strong background and work ethic to make it all work,” he said. 

“Not only that, but the students are the happiest I’ve ever seen them with Katy at the helm.”

During the summer, Dornick could be seen rearranging the areas the children would be working in. 

Katy Dornick and her student. Photo from Andrew Harris

“Classroom management is perhaps one of the most important things to have in place so that everything runs smoothly and is safe,” she said. “Some of my students have critical medical needs,  this is a priority, and I wanted the educational set-up to be perfect.”

When school was back in session, a new “sensory room” was created. A perfect place to bring a child — especially children with autism — it’s a place to help calm an anxious student. 

One student said it was his favorite place in the school.

Recently Dornicik, along with her class took over the responsibility of food collection for our high school. They donate all the food to the district pantry.

She has also guided her students to plan and create personal letters to be included when the district sent out care packages to veterans who have graduated from Comsewogue High School. One Marine in California was so excited to receive his gift from her class because he also had her as a teacher several years ago.

She has always been active in the local community including the fire department and a coach for sports teams. 

“Katy. Dornick is truly one of a kind,” said Principal Mike Mosca. “What she has done for the students in her class and the Comsewogue Life Skills program is nothing short of exceptional. Visiting her class and her students is certainly one of the highlights of my day.”

Dornick said it’s an honor to teach her classes.

“All I can say is I feel honored to be given this opportunity to teach this class,” she said. “I truly feel like the luckiest person in the room. There is a line in a song by Jordan Davis that stands true for me in this class: ‘Do what you love and call it work.’ There is not a day that goes by when I do not leave this class without a smile on my face. These kids are simply amazing, and they continue to make me proud on a daily basis.”

by -
0 173
Photo by Julianne Mosher

The Port Jefferson Free Library has been named as one of America’s star libraries for 2021, according to the Library Journal. 

Recently announced, the Journal stated, “This is the 14th year in which LJ has scored U.S. public libraries on the LJ index of public library service and awarded star library ratings.”

“Because of the unavoidable delay in data collection and analysis, that means this year’s star libraries once again represent not our current pandemic realities, but a sort of pre-pandemic time capsule,” the release noted.

While the ratings come from before the coronavirus, the award is still noteworthy.

“They represent a useful point of comparison,” the release continued. “We’ve interviewed library directors to learn how the pandemic has changed things since these numbers were collected.”

PJFL director Tom Donlon said that last year, in 2020, the library was rated at a four, so the 2021 five-star rating is certainly a win.

“We couldn’t have done it without our staff,” he said. “They were able to pivot quickly from in-person to virtual, along with our great base — our patrons who support us.”

Donlon said he and the rest of the library staff feel “fantastic” about the rating.

“We’re so grateful,” he said. 

He added that the library is continuing to offer exciting programs for residents of all ages. Masks are still required inside the library at all times to help keep staff and the community safe. 

“We’re here to support our community in any way we can,” he said. 

The following incidents have been reported by the Suffolk County Police:

Centereach

■ Walmart on Middle Country Road in Centereach reported a petit larceny on Jan. 16. A woman put various clothing items in her cart and left the store without paying. The stolen merchandise was valued at approximately $500.

Commack

■ A petit larceny was reported at the Walmart on Crooked Hill Road in Commack on Jan. 10. A man allegedly stole a coffee machine and assorted men’s clothing valued at $113.

■ Walmart on Crooked Hill Road in Commack reported a shoplifter on Jan. 12. A man allegedly broke a glass case and stole a Nintendo video valued at $300.

■ Home Depot on Jericho Turnpike in Commack reported a petit larceny on Jan. 15. A man allegedly stole a Milwaukee power tool valued at $170.

■ Walmart on Crooked Hill Road in Commack called police on Jan. 16 to report a petit larceny. A man allegedly stole kitchen appliances valued at approximately $550.

East Setauket

■ BJ’s Wholesale Club on Nesconset Highway in East Setauket called the police on Jan. 9 at approximately 4 p.m. to report the theft of merchandise. A man allegedly took seafood from a case, concealed it under his coat and left without paying.

■ Walmart on Nesconset Highway in East Setauket called the police on Jan. 10 to report the theft of merchandise. Two women allegedly walked out of the store with assorted household items and tools without paying.

Hauppauge

■ A vehicle parked on North Hoffman in Hauppauge was broken into on Jan. 12. Credit cards and a drivers license were stolen.

■ A vehicle parked on Devonshire Road in Hauppauge was broken into on Jan. 13. The suspect broke the driver’s side window and stole a wallet and a gym bag.

Huntington

■ Mobile Gas on Wall Street reported a man allegedly pumped $40 worth of gas and drove away without paying on Jan. 16.

Lake Grove

■ Macy’s at Smith Haven Mall in Lake Grove reported a petit larceny on Jan. 9. A man allegedly stole clothing valued at approximately $230.

■ Ulta Beauty on Nesconset Highway in Lake Grove reported a shoplifter on Jan. 10 in Lake Grove. A man allegedly stole several bottles of perfume valued at approximately $2000.

■ A burglary was reported at Mayra’s Bakery on Hawkins Avenue in Lake Grove on Jan. 16. A suspect broke a glass door, entered the store and stole the cash drawer from the register. 

■ Ulta Beauty on Nesconset Highway in Lake Grove reported a shoplifter on Jan. 16. A woman allegedly stole various makeup and perfume valued at approximately $500.

Port Jefferson

■ The theft of a catalytic converter from a 2013 Toyota Tacoma was reported on Jan. 17. The vehicle had been parked overnight on Belle Terre Road in Port Jefferson from Jan. 16 to 17.

Port Jefferson Station

■ A resident living on Piedmont Drive in Port Jefferson Station reported the theft of a Hiboy Titan Electric Scooter on Jan. 11. The scooter was parked outside the residence when it was stolen.

■ Speedway on Route 112 in Port Jefferson Station reported a burglary on Jan. 14. Unknown persons broke the lock on the front door with a crowbar and stole tobacco products.

Rocky Point

■ ADC Landscaping and Tree Service on Route 25A in Rocky Point reported the theft of landscaping equipment from a trailer located on the property on Jan. 14. Items stolen included hedge trimmers, weedwackers, chain saws and a backpack leaf blower.

■ Walgreens on Route 25A in Rocky Point called the police on Jan. 14 at approximately 2 p.m. to report that two men had shopped for miscellaneous pharmacy items and left without paying.

St. James

■ A burglary was reported at the IHOP on Alexander Avenue in St. James on Jan. 9. A person broke a window, entered the store and stole cash from the register.

Selden

■ Joe’s Campus Heroes on Middle Country Road in Selden reported a burglary on Jan. 8. Entry was gained through a broken front glass door and cash was stolen.

■ On Jan. 10 Home Depot on Middle Country Road in Selden reported that a man allegedly walked out of the store with an assortment of small hand tools without paying.

■ Target on Middle Country Road in Selden reported a petit larceny on Jan. 16. A man allegedly stole two Dyson vacuum cleaners valued at approximately $760.

■ A resident on Blue Point Road in Selden reported that his Kenworth Northwest Tow Truck was stolen on Jan. 7 at approximately 3 a.m. The resident reported the keys had been left in the truck.

■ Shah’s Halal Food on Middle Country Road in Selden called police on Jan. 11 after a customer allegedly ordered food from the restaurant and left without paying.

Setauket

■ A woman who parked her car in front of Mario’s Restaurant on Main Street in Setauket on Jan. 6 returned to her car at approximately 11 p.m. and found the front passenger window had been broken and a pocketbook and laptop was missing.

■ A resident living on Harmony Lane in Setauket reported that an unknown person entered their unlocked car parked in their driveway on Jan. 7 and stole cash.

South Huntington

■ Victoria Secret at the Walt Whitman Shops on Walt Whitman Road in South Huntington reported a petit larceny on Jan. 16. A woman allegedly stole women’s clothing valued at approximately $1050.

■ Ulta Beauty at the Walt Whitman Shops on Walt Whitman Road in South Huntington reported a shoplifter on Jan. 16. A man allegedly stole perfume valued at approximately $1600.

South Setauket

■ Target on Pond Path in South Setauket reported a petit larceny on Jan. 15. A woman allegedly stole various video game accessories valued at approximately $720.

■ Target on Pond Path in South Setauket called the police to report a grand larceny on Jan. 16. Three men allegedly stole Apple iPads and AirPods valued at $3460.

Stony Brook

■ A burglary was reported at Organic Krush on Main Street in Stony Brook on Jan. 7. A safe, three cash registers and cash were stolen.

■ Long Island Bagel Cafe on Nesconset Highway in Stony Brook reported a burglary on Jan. 10. Access was gained by breaking the glass on the front door. Cash registers and cash were stolen.

Terryville

■ An unknown person stole two license plants off of a GMC pickup truck parked on Terryville Road in Terryville on Jan. 10.

Suffolk County Crime Stoppers offers a cash reward for information that leads to an arrest. Anyone with information about these incidents can contact Suffolk County Crime Stoppers to submit an anonymous tip by calling 1-800-220-TIPS.

— COMPILED BY HEIDI SUTTON

by -
0 250
Applications for the community garden raised bed lottery are available now until Jan. 31. Photo from Rebecca Kassy

After a successful first year, the Beach Street Community Garden in Port Jefferson is gearing up for its 2022 season. 

Trustee Rebecca Kassay, who spearheaded the concept last year, said that applications are currently open through Jan. 31 to obtain a raised bed at the plot.

“The raised garden boxes at the Beach Street Community Garden are ideal for first-time gardeners and seasoned gardeners alike,” she said in a statement. “The garden regularly hosts educational programming. Community gardens are a great way to grow food, meet your neighbors, and connect with the land.”

Claire Gearns, age 10, is one of those first-time gardeners who has taken advantage of the community garden with her father, Rich.

“It’s fun to do and it’s a new hobby for me and if you didn’t get to try it, you should definitely try it out,” she said. 

“As new gardeners we had so much fun growing our own vegetables and can’t wait to get our fingers in the soil again,” Rich added.

Right now, there are 20 raised beds available for rent and will be processed through a lottery. Community members who were the first group in the 2021 garden said that it was a great experience that brought everyone together.

Photo from Rebecca Kassay

“The highlight of this past year for me was participating in the Beach Street Community Garden,” said Isobel Breheny. “My family and I grew so many fresh vegetables that we were able to share some with others. I made new friends and had so much fun! It was relaxing and a great stress reliever to tend the vegetables each week. And in addition, I went to workshops to learn how to grow better vegetables for next year.”

Shannon Handley added that she, her husband and their two children also took a plot this past summer.

“We were able to walk with our dog to our plot every morning to check on and harvest our zucchini and cucamelon,” she said. “It was an amazing experience and helped us to foster a love of vegetables, gardening, and community in our kids. We are so excited for the 2022 season!”

The garden, located in a previously vacant lot that was once a playground, became a sustainable haven in 2021 when nearly two-dozen volunteers cleared the space out and assembled 24 raised beds to plant all different types of fruits, veggies and herbs.

“I live in a condominium community and really don’t have the space for a garden,” said Gwen Gnadt. “This gave me the option for a garden. I was able to plant so many things and had quite an abundant crop.”

Christine O’Reilly added that the community garden was and is a great way to learn from others.

“There were varying levels of expertise amongst the gardeners, so there was a great opportunity for information and vegetable sharing,” she said. 

For those who are interested in applying for this year’s raised bed lottery, they can visit portjeff.com/communitygarden, download and complete the lottery form, and mail or drop off the completed form to Port Jefferson Village Hall by Jan. 31.

Raised bed lottery winners will be notified via email by Feb. 15.

Individual or family use raised beds are available for rent for $40 per bed for residents or $75 per bed for non-residents annually with four communal herb/flower beds for registered gardeners. All beds have timed drip irrigation and are surrounded by deer fencing. 

Four of the raised beds have higher sides for gardeners with different abilities.

Shakore Philip visited the Sunshine Prevention Center in Dec. 2021

Professional football player, Shakore Philip, spent some time with the students at the Sunshine Alternative Learning and Prevention Center in Port Jefferson Station over the holidays. He went to the center to share some knowledge and life experiences with the students at one of their small group sessions.

Shakore Philip has lived in New York his whole life, except during his tenure playing collegiate football at Widener University in Pennsylvania. He is actively seeking his next professional football opportunity for the upcoming season. Shakore has a passion for underprivileged youth in his community and felt that sharing some life knowledge with the students at the Sunshine Center was a great opportunity to affect their lives in a positive way.

“In my time at the Sunshine center I was able to meet several young individuals,” said Philip. “I was able to share some of the experiences I’ve had in my life. My favorite part of this experience was being able to hear the input of the students and have a genuine conversation with them as well.”

The Sunshine Alternative Learning and Prevention Center is a leader in the field of substance abuse and violence prevention for the last 25 years. The center works to build drug-free and violence-free communities on Long Island. Sunshine provides a family-centered approach to prevention and is concerned about the social/emotional needs of all children and families. All the programs at Sunshine are designed to build on healthy social skills each with the focus on specific needs. This center uses support groups to normalize students struggles, helping them to see that they are not alone, that others have gone through the same or similar things and others DO understand.

Located at 468 Boyle Rd, Port Jefferson Station, the Sunshine Alternative Learning and Prevention Center offers many different kinds of programs for children and adults throughout the year. Including alternative education and secondary school, adult and parenting programs, summer prevention programs, teen and children’s programs. This opportunity with The Sunshine Alternative Learning and Prevention Center was the best way for Shakore to show how much he loves his community.

For more information about Sunshine Alternative Learning and Prevention Center please visit https://www.sunshinepreventionctr.org/. To learn more about Shakore Philip you can follow his Instagram @the_8th_continent

By Heidi Sutton

Every five years or so, Theatre Three’s Children’s Theatre reaches into its vault filled with scripts and pulls out a gem. This time it’s a musical twist on the classic story of Puss In Boots. The show opened on Jan. 16.

Although there have been many versions of the European fairy tale over the centuries, the most well known is The Master Cat or Puss in Boots from The Fairy Tales of Charles Perrault in 1697. When Puss was reintroduced in Shrek 2 in 2004, a whole new generation was smitten.

Now the clever ‘tail’ returns to Theatre Three’s MainStage with a fresh score and choreography and does not disappoint. Written by Jeffrey Sanzel and Douglas J. Quattrock, the show was first performed in 1991 and has withstood the test of time.  

In the kingdom of King Vexmus, a kind-hearted young man named Christopher lives on a farm with his father and his two brothers, Shank and Amos. Every day his brothers force him to work the fields while they take naps. When their father dies, Shank and Amos inherit the farm while Christopher gets his father’s cat Puss and is promptly kicked out. 

With no food, money or a place to live, Christopher begins to lose hope until he discovers that Puss can talk. He confides in the cat that he has fallen in love with the king’s beautiful daughter, Princess Anafazia, who he met briefly when her entourage drove past the farm (in a great flashback scene). Puss agrees to help in the name of love and hatches a scheme to have Christopher pose as the rich and mysterious Marquis of Carabas to win Anafazia’s heart. Will everything go as planned? Will there be a happy ending?

Directed by Sanzel, the fast-paced show is wonderful on so many levels. Steven Uihlein is perfectly cast in the role of Christopher and also serves as storyteller. His plight gains the sympathy of the audience right away. Liam Marsigliano and Jason Furnari make a great comedic team as Amos and Shank. Their futile attempt to farm the land after Christopher leaves is hilarious. 

Michelle LaBozzetta, in the role of Puss, the cat of all trades, steals the show with her energetic and flamboyant personality. In one of the cutest scenes, her character acquires her famous boots by causing a ruckus outside Shank and Amos’s door. 

Sanzel and Josie McSwane are excellent in the roles of the bickering King Vexmus and Queen Ida (or should I say Queen Ida and King Vexmus) who in the end agree to disagree. Haley Saunders is terrific as the spoiled Princess Anafazia, who quickly reveals that this royal’s beauty is only skin deep. Rachel Max as Ida and Louisa Bikowski as Missy, the no nonsense wives of Shank and Amos, and Heather Rose Kuhn as the sweet Julia, Princess Anafazia’s lady-in-waiting, are a fine supporting cast.

Choreographed by Sari Feldman and accompanied on piano by Douglas Quattrock, the 12 musical numbers are the heart of the show, with special mention to the duets “Puss in Boots” with Puss and Christopher and “Take a Moment for Yourself” with Puss and Julia, and the lively group number, “Song of the Marquis of Carabas.”

The charming costumes, designed by Jason Allyn, from the royal gowns in shades of lavender complete with wigs and crowns to the peasant garb in hues of brown, tie the story together perfectly. And wait until you see Puss’s fierce and fabulous outfit! 

This special show doesn’t come around often. Catch a performance before it’s gone.

Running time is one hour and 20 minutes with a 15 minute intermission. Meet the entire cast in the lobby on your way out for a keepsake photo.

—————————

Theatre Three, 412 Main St., Port Jefferson presents Puss In Boots on Jan. 22, 29 and Feb. 5 at 11 a.m. and Jan. 23 at 3 p.m. Children’s theatre continues with Dorothy’s Adventures In Oz from Feb. 23 to March 26 with a sensory friendly performance on Feb. 27 and The Adventures of Peter Rabbit from April 16 to May 7 with a sensory friendly performance on April 24. All seats are $10. For more information or to order, call 631-928-9100 or visit www.theatrethree.com

 

 

Community members hold up lanterns and sunflowers during a vigil to honor Aida Ramonez who passed away at age 11 on Jan. 5. Photo by Julianne Mosher

The Port Jefferson community has come together to mourn the loss of one of their own, 11-year-old Aida Ramonez who died unexpectedly Jan. 5.

On Saturday, Jan. 15, several dozen people gathered on the lawn of the First Presbyterian Church in the village to pray and remember the vibrant, young girl who was taken far too soon.

“Aida was something else,” said her mother, Lolita. “She was extremely outgoing. She would stick up for her friends, was anti-bullying and absolutely loved animals and her life.”

The Port Jefferson middle schooler had moved with her family from Mastic Beach just three years prior to her death, but in the short amount of time she graced the village, she touched the lives of dozens of people — young and old.

Aida Ramonez enjoying live music at Port Jeff Brewery. Photo from Lolita Ramonez

During Saturday’s vigil, classmates of the sixth-grader held onto sunflowers, Aida’s favorite flower. Small white lanterns were lit, decorated with purple ribbons while prayers were said and “Amazing Grace” was sung. 

Nicole Jacobs said that Aida befriended her daughter in school after the Ramonez family moved to the district. The two girls would go trick-or-treating on Halloween together and visit the water park in the summer. 

“She was very wise for her age,” Jacobs said. “She was so compassionate. Very loving and free-spirited. She was such a good kid, finding the positive in any situation and who sought out the kids who didn’t always fit in.”

But along with being the girl who chose to be a friend to anyone and everyone, her true passion was animals, Lolita said. 

“We nicknamed her the chicken whisperer,” she laughed, fondly.

Lolita went on to remember how one of the family’s chickens fell ill. The chicken, who barely approached anyone else, trusted Aida and allowed her to feed its medicine. 

“She’d massage the chicken and say, ‘Don’t you give up on me!’” Lolita said. “She wanted to be a vet.”

The chicken survived and is thriving to this day. 

Aida also loved art — it was one of her favorite subjects in school along with science. 

“She was an incredible artist and was an excellent student,” Lolita said. “She even made it to the honor roll at the end of their marking period. She was so proud of that.”

Aida’s former fifth-grade teachers at Edna Louise Spear Elementary School, Laura Kelly and Paige Lohmann, said in a statement that Aida had “so many wonderful qualities and gifts that made her stand out.”

“Her love for her family, care for animals and loyalty to her friends were most important to her. At such a young age, Aida believed in using her voice to speak up for causes that she believed in. She had a keen sense of who she was and how she can make a difference in the world through her thoughtful words and caring actions. We will always remember Aida and her high hopes and dreams for life and the world around her,” the teachers said.

During Saturday’s event, Robert Neidig, assistant superintendent of Port Jefferson School District, remembered his student.

Sunflowers are given to Aida’s mother, Lolita, during the vigil. Photo by Julianne Mosher

“Aida, although she was a quiet young girl, had such an intense focus of maturity about her,” he said. “She once wrote that one of the things that made her happiest was being kind to others. It is this endearing quality that helped brighten up the spaces that she inhabited and allowed her to have such an enormous impact on our entire community.”

Neidig went on to mention, that the outpouring support of the community standing together on that cold Saturday was a true testament of what Aida always preached — kindness.

Mayor Margot Garant said that although tragedy strikes, the vigil proves how Port Jefferson comes together in times of need.

“The ceremony was moving and shows that here in Port Jefferson when we lose a resident, young or old, our community is impacted as if it were our very own,” she said. “This is what we mean by ‘Port Jeff Proud,’ and ‘Port Jeff Strong.’”

Trustee Kathianne Snaden’s daughter is in Aida’s class and she said it breaks her heart to see the community lose someone so young and so vibrant.

“My heart and prayers are with the Ramonez family,” she said. “If there is any silver lining, it’s seeing the community as a whole come together to support and uplift Aida’s family, and showed we can help each other in a time of need. We are stronger together, and I hope that the outpouring of love that day brought some peace to her family. We are here for them.”

Along with the vigil, a Meal Train was created for the family the day her death was announced, Jan. 6. 

Jacobs, who helped create the link, said that within two hours of it being posted, the first four weeks were booked with different types of meals to be dropped off at the Ramonez home. The Meal Train was then extended an extra two weeks, and booked in only one hour.

“People have been reaching out every day asking how they can help,” Jacobs said. “More than 40 gift cards were left on my front porch to be given to the family.”

Lolita said she and her family are overwhelmed by everyone’s kindness and knows that Aida would be “flattered beyond belief.”

A selfie in front of Aida’s favorite place — the beach. Photo from Lolita Ramonez

“Aida was a free spirit who loved the ocean,” she said. “She was not afraid of death or any of life’s phases.”

One of Aida’s favorite songs was “Circle of Life” from “The Lion King.” She loved fishing, anime and gymnastics. 

“She was an adrenaline junkie,” Lolita said. 

Her mother added that Aida’s remains have been cremated and her ashes will be thrown into the ocean in Puerto Rico — one of the places she loved to visit, along with Ecuador. 

“She would like her friends and loved ones to remember her with joy, especially when they go to her happy place, the beach,” she said. “She will be with them always in spirit and would love for everyone to stay positive and accomplish their goals.” 

Aida is survived by her mother Lolita, father Juan and older brother Grayson, as well as everyone near and far who’s lives she touched.

To continue helping the Ramonez family following this loss, Nicole Jacobs is collecting gift cards to be regularly delivered to them. Community members who would like to send their condolences can email [email protected] for more information. 

Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. at the Civil Rights March In Washington D.C. in 1963.

During a march on Washington, D.C., back in August 1963, civil rights activist and minister the Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. gave a speech that was heard around the world. 

“I have a dream,” he recited, “that my four little children will one day live in a nation where they will not be judged by the color of their skin but by the content of their character. I have a dream today.”

Now, nearly 54 years after his assassination in Memphis, Tennessee, that speech still has clout, and its message is still being spread, but unfortunately King’s children and granddaughter still do not see what he had envisioned so long ago. 

The murders of Black men and women including George Floyd, Breonna Taylor, Elijah McClain and David McAtee — just to name a few — still continue some five decades after King’s plea for our country to stop its racism, bigotry and hate. 

How can we as a society still continue to judge, harass and kill people based solely on the color of their skin? Have we not learned?

This week would have been MLK’s 93rd birthday, and he would be ashamed of what is going on in our country.

When he died in 1968, Black people in America were fighting for their basic human rights. Now it’s 2022 and people of color are still fighting. Fortunately, they’re being joined by many others in the fight. 

While the summer of 2020 was one of civil unrest, protests, anger and tears, it was a summer which again started the conversation that enough is enough. 

In 2022, we as a society need to continue moving forward — not backward. 

MLK’s dream was for children, Black or white, to play happily and peacefully together. 

Let us start this new year with his dream in mind. Let us show respect for our neighbors and support causes of conscience. Let us remember the injustices and work to make sure they are not repeated.

We have the ability to succeed better as a society but what it will take is an awareness of injustice and the resolve to root it out.

Let us continue to keep Dr. King’s dream alive.  

by -
0 215
Port Jeff senior Camryn Spiller looks for the rebound in a league VII road game against Center Moriches. Photo by Bill Landon

The Port Jefferson Royals led from the opening tip with senior Abigail Rolfe battling in the paint all game to lead her team with 18 points in a 50-37 victory over Center Moriches Jan. 18. 

Rolfe scored 4 fields goals and went 10 for 11 at the free throw line in the league VII road game. 

Lola Idir nail 3 triples and a pair of field goals for 13 points, Annie Maier and Amy Whitman scored 7 points a piece, Camryn Spiller hit a trey and Caitlyn Dickhuth banked two. 

The win lifts the Royals to 3-0 in league 7-2 overall. The Royals retake the court where they’ll host Babylon on Jan. 21. Game time is 4:30 p.m.

— All photos by Bill Landon