Tags Posts tagged with "Thanksgiving"


Drake Mandrell mugshot from SCPD

Police have made a third arrest in connection with the several businesses and vehicles damaged in Huntington early on Thanksgiving.

The suspects allegedly targeted eight local businesses and five cars that day. According to the Suffolk County Police Department, officers from the 2nd Precinct Crime Section canvassed the area, reviewed video surveillance and followed up on anonymous tips to identify and get to the trio.

Four businesses on the small stretch of Stewart Avenue were listed as victims of the vandals, including a furniture store, Gold Coast Lobsters, an x-ray supply company and an unnamed building that was under construction. Police also listed the Italian restaurant Bravo! Nader just down the street, on Union Place, as well as a telecommunications company on that same block. According to police, the nearby Stop & Shop on Wall Street and the Value Drugs on New York Avenue, across Route 25A from the other seven locations, were also hit.

William Strein mugshot from SCPD
William Strein mugshot from SCPD

The first suspect, 18-year-old Huntington resident Francesco Volpe, was arrested on Dec. 19 and charged with three counts of criminal mischief and three of making graffiti. About a month later, police arrested 21-year-old William Strein, of East Northport, and charged him with six counts of each of those offenses.

Police announced on Friday that officers had arrested the third suspect, 27-year-old Queens resident Drake Mandrell, the day before. Like Strein, he was charged with six counts each of criminal mischief and making graffiti.

Attorney information for the three was not immediately available. According to police, they will be arraigned at a later date.

Police asked that anyone with information about these incidents or similar ones called the Crime Section at 631-854-8226 or call Crime Stoppers anonymously at 800-220-TIPS.

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A car trudges up East Broadway in the 1924 hill climb on Thanksgiving. Photo above from village archive

Thanksgiving is a time for family, food, football — and a car race?

An antique car makes its way during the Hill Climb at Port Jefferson's Heritage Weekend. Photo by Bob Savage
An antique car makes its way during the Hill Climb at Port Jefferson’s Heritage Weekend. Photo by Bob Savage

Turkey Day has its traditions, and for Port Jefferson one year in the Roaring ‘20s those included a hill-climbing contest. On the holiday in 1924, according to the Port Jefferson Village historical archive, automobiles raced up the steep hill of East Broadway, from the Newcomb Brothers Garage to the entrance of Belle Terre at Cliff Road.

Hill climbs up East Broadway had become a regular affair in the village, after the Automobile Club of Port Jefferson held its first one in June 1910. And contemporary Port Jefferson residents have experienced the fun, too — the village recreated the hill climb during its Heritage Weekend in August, sending antique and otherwise unique cars revving up the road. Some people got decked out in Victorian-era garb for the occasion.

The year of the Thanksgiving hill climb was a special one for New Yorkers in another way: The event was held on the same day one famous department store held its first Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade in the city.

Port Jefferson Village had a completely different look in that era: The fire department headquarters was sandwiched between shops on Main Street, Port Jefferson High School was at its old location on Spring Street under the direction of supervising principal Earl L. Vandermeulen, and the harbor was being mined for sand.

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The Setauket High School senior class dedicated the 1946 yearbook to the eight Setauket men who died in World War II. They are, from top to bottom and left to right, Cpl. Douglas Hunter, Sgt. Francis Hawkins, Cpl. William Weston, Lt. Anthony Matusky, Fireman First Class Clifford Darling, and Machinist Mate Orlando Lyons. Henry Eichacker and Edward Pfeiffer are not pictured. Photo from Beverly Tyler

By Beverly C. Tyler

Anthony Matusky received his wings at Pensacola, Fla., in 1941. His sister, Mary Matwell, remembered that Anthony had said that he trained off Greenland in the unit with Joseph Kennedy. At the time of his death, Anthony was stationed on the Trinidad Naval Base as a pilot in a naval patrol squadron engaged in patrolling for enemy submarines, which were taking a heavy toll of shipping in the Caribbean.

“The Navy Department has notified Mrs. John Matusky, of Setauket, that her son, Lieut. Anthony R. Matusky, U.S.N.R., reported missing in action last August [1943], has been awarded the Distinguished Flying Cross, highest aviation honor, in recognition of the following service: ‘For heroism and extraordinary achievement while participating in aerial flight as a pilot attached to a Patrol Squadron during a coordinated attack on an enemy submarine in the Caribbean Sea . . . His cool courage and superb airmanship in the face of danger contributed decisively to the eventual destruction of the enemy submarine and the capture of her crew.”
— New York Journal American, 1944

As reported in the November 1945 issue of The Reader’s Digest by Pulitzer Prize winning writer Ira Wolfert, in an article titled “The Silent, Invisible War Under the Sea,” the German submarines were an effective tool in destroying the supply arm of the Allied efforts, sinking 1,161 merchant vessels in 1942. Their subs basically owned the Atlantic until an effective strategy was developed using aircraft and radar to find submarines recharging their batteries on the surface and the ideal attack procedures to cripple and sink them.

On the night of Aug. 5, 1943, a patrol plane out of Trinidad Naval Base spotted a sub and made an attack as the sub crash-dived. The Mariner aircraft then kept the sub in radar contact all night but it did not surface again. As detailed by Wolfert, “At dawn [the patrol plane] running low on gas was replaced by Lieut. A.R. Matuski. For seven and a half tedious hours, Matuski plied back and forth and around a square of ocean, figuring how he would maneuver if he were a sub skipper who had been down so and so many hours in such and such currents and this and that kind of sea, and making his gambit accordingly.

“Matuski was a boy who knew his business. At 1321 hours (1:21 p.m.) Trinidad Naval Base got a sub contact report from him, giving longitude and latitude, adding ‘I am going in to attack.’
‘1330’ he radioed, ‘sub damaged, bow out of water, making only about two knots.
‘1335: sub bow sank.
‘1337: no casualties to plane or personnel.
‘1348: Damaged. Damaged. I am on fire.’”

The Setauket High School senior class dedicated the 1946 yearbook to the eight Setauket men who died in World War II. They are, from top to bottom and left to right, Cpl. Douglas Hunter, Sgt. Francis Hawkins, Cpl. William Weston, Lt. Anthony Matusky, Fireman First Class Clifford Darling, and Machinist Mate Orlando Lyons. Henry Eichacker and Edward Pfeiffer are not pictured. Photo from Beverly Tyler
The Setauket High School senior class dedicated the 1946 yearbook to the eight Setauket men who died in World War II. They are, from top to bottom and left to right, Cpl. Douglas Hunter, Sgt. Francis Hawkins, Cpl. William Weston, Lt. Anthony Matusky, Fireman First Class Clifford Darling, and Machinist Mate Orlando Lyons. Henry Eichacker and Edward Pfeiffer are not pictured. Photo from Beverly Tyler

There were no other transmissions from Lt. Matusky’s aircraft and no trace of the pilot or crew of 10 was ever found. Trinidad sent another aircraft to keep up the pressure on the sub and as detailed by Wolfert, “[The next naval patrol bomber] reached the position given by Matuski and 20 minutes later picked up the enemy pip on his radar. When he got in visual range, he could see that Matuski had done his last work well. The sub’s stern was down, its bow up, and it was lumbering across the sea.”

Together with an additional naval aircraft, a blimp and finally an army bomber the sub was sunk. Navy destroyers picked up 40 sub survivors the next morning.      

Anthony was killed during the war but his four brothers returned home, all five honored. Anthony’s name is engraved on the monuments on the Setauket Village Green and the East Setauket Memorial Park along with the other seven men from Setauket who died in WWII.

Two men from the local area gave their lives in WWI, Raymond Wishart and Harry Golden. A massive boulder and south-facing bronze tablet were erected on the Setauket Village Green in their memory. The boulder was brought from Strong’s Neck and the plaque was designed by the well-known artist William DeLeftwich Dodge who painted the murals on New York history that are in the state capital in Albany.

On the opposite side of the rock is a plaque that was placed there after WWII.  It reads, “1941-1945 In memory of Clifford J. Darling, Henry P. Eichacker, Francis S. Hawkins, David Douglas Hunter, Orlando B. Lyons, Anthony R. Matusky, Edward A. Pfeiffer, (and) William E. Weston of the United States Armed Forces who gave their lives in World War II.” On the memorial in East Setauket is also listed the local serviceman Chris F. Brunn who died in Vietnam.

We have a lot to be thankful for during this time of Thanksgiving. We have a very special community here in the hamlets of Setauket and Stony Brook and the villages of Old Field and Poquott. Let us never forget the sacrifice made by these men, by those service men and women from our community who were injured physically and/or mentally, and by all the men and women who served in war and in peacetime to keep us safe and free.

Beverly Tyler is the Three Village Historical Society historian.

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When most people celebrate Thanksgiving, they say they are thankful for things like their families and friends, and similarly irreplaceable items. Your newspaper staff is equally thankful for them, but we would be remiss if we did not also mention the little things that have kept us going all year.

In our own words, the things we are grateful to have:

Victoria Espinoza, editor of The Times of Huntington & Northport — M&Ms, which have been my constant companion when I’m stressed; Fleetwood Mac, for making me feel like Esméralda; Christoph Waltz, for being alive and reminding me that love is real.

Phil Corso, editor of The Village Times Herald and the Times of Smithtown — The Shih Tzus, Betty and Buster, for carrying on Bugsy’s legacy; Taco Bell’s mobile app; my Casper mattress.

Desirée Keegan, sports editor and editor of The Village Beacon Record — Coffee, for its waking and warming qualities; music, because it’s always there to complement my mood; sports, because they are exciting, challenging and rewarding.

Giselle Barkley, reporter — My new car, which brings an end to a history of car troubles; tea, because it’s one of the few things that keep me warm; Louis C.K., because life’s nothing without some laughter.

Elana Glowatz: online editor and editor of The Port Times Record — My dog, for being a person; Dunkin’ Donuts, for opening 200 feet from my desk; peanut butter, for being my life partner since the 1980s.

A happy Thanksgiving to all our readers, both the longtime subscribers and the ones who picked up a newspaper for the first time today. We are all thankful for you too.

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By Bob Lipinski

The Pilgrims held the first Thanksgiving Day in the autumn of 1621 to celebrate their first successful harvest season. Thanksgiving signifies family, food, drink, fun, history, and tradition, all wrapped up into one mid-week day.

Before you roast the turkey, check out my two cooking tips:

1) Roast the turkey with the back side up (except for the last hour of roasting). Fat from the fat glands in the back will melt and baste the turkey during roasting.

“Fill every beaker up, my men, pour forth the cheering wine: There’s life and strength in every drop, thanksgiving to the vine!”

— Albert Gorton Greene, 1802–1868, American judge and poet

2) Truss up the Thanksgiving turkey with dental floss. It’s cheap, it’s sturdy and it’s easy to work with. Just be sure you use unwaxed and unflavored floss.

Turkey is inherently dry, especially when overcooked, unless brined or basted. Before I recommend a few wines, let’s give some thought to what we often spread over or eat with pieces of turkey.

I hope that you said cranberry sauce! Cranberry sauce is sweet and tart, offering moisture, flavor and a berry character to the turkey. Therefore, we want to pair turkey with dry or even off-dry red, white, and rosé wines, providing they have plenty of fruit. My wine suggestions for Thanksgiving are:

◆ 2011 Cairdean Napa Valley “Unoaked” Chardonnay; California
◆ 2014 Rapitalà “Piano Maltese” (blend of Catarratto and Grillo grapes); Sicily, Italy
◆ 2014 Re Manfredi “Bianco” (blend of Müller-Thurgau and Traminer grapes) Basilicata, Italy
◆ 2014 Bodega El Esteco “Don David” Torrontés; Cafayate Valley, Argentina

◆ 2013 Elena Walch “Lagrein;” Trentino-Alto Adige, Italy
◆ 2013 Amity “Pinot Noir;” Willamette Valley, Oregon
◆ 2012 Bethel Heights “Pinot Noir” Estate Black Label; Willamette Valley, Oregon
◆ 2013 Castello Banfi “Rosso di Montalcino;” Tuscany, Italy

If you like rosé wines, my recommendation would be a bottle of 2014 Maison Belle Claire Rosé, from Provence, France. It is light, dry and very refreshing, with considerable fruit and a pleasing hint of cranberry.

After the feast, complete your Thanksgiving holiday with a tumbler filled with ice and a heavy dose of Wild Turkey bourbon whiskey from Kentucky.

Bob Lipinski, a local author, has written nine books, including “101: Everything You Need To Know About Whiskey” and “Italian Wine & Cheese Made Simple,” available on Amazon.com. He conducts training seminars on wine & cheese; sale;, time management; and leadership. He can be reached at boblipinski.com or [email protected].

A fireball erupts during a demonstration on the dangers of deep-frying a turkey in hot oil. Photo from Brookhaven Town

Brookhaven Town officials held a fiery presentation on Nov. 20 to demonstrate the dangers of deep-frying a turkey in hot oil.

According to a press release from the town, the trend is a growing one that is responsible for several deaths and dozens of injuries every year.

The hot oil can splash or spill, causing severe burns.

“The fireball that we saw during the demonstration clearly showed how the improper use of turkey fryers can lead to personal injury and the destruction of property,” Supervisor Ed Romaine (R) said in a statement. “I hope that people who use deep fryers follow all the manufacturer’s safety instructions and keep a fire extinguisher handy.”

Romaine and the town’s chief fire marshal, Chris Mehrman, held the demonstration on the Friday ahead of Thanksgiving.

The supervisor also announced that this holiday season the town would accept waste oil, which is used to create biodiesel fuel, at the town landfill on Horseblock Road in Brookhaven hamlet.

Last year, the town accepted more than 350 gallons of used cooking oil after Thanksgiving, according to the press release.

The landfill is open Monday to Friday, 7 a.m. to 3 p.m., and Saturday, from 7 a.m. to noon.

For Thanksgiving fire safety tips, visit the National Fire Protection Association at www.nfpa.org.