*Members: If you have any announcements that you would like to post on the ROBS web site, please contact Nick Siciliano at News2@robsny.org. Announcements will be posted each month on this page.
If you miss any previous month's announcements,
you can view them at the Archives page of this web site. You can also read more news in our Newsletters. In addition, if you have
your own web site, and would like to share it with other members, let us know and we can include the link on the ROBS site.
ROBS WELCOMES NEW RETIREES AT FIRST MEETING POSTED 10/1/15
On Friday, September 11, 2015 ROBS held its first meeting of the 2015-16 year at 10:00 am in the Brentwood Public Library. At the first meeting of each year the new Brentwood staff retirees are welcomed. This year we welcomed six new retirees: Ellen Bresloff, Louise Pagels, Barbara Rhein, Theresa Kolker, Debbie Warsaw-Curley, and Yvonne Bohm. You can view their photo here and also in the "Meetings and Functions" album on the "Photo Gallery" page.
In addition to the welcoming of new retirees, John Sherin conducted a hands-on activity entitled "One Step at a Time". The activity was a big success as seen by the the group discussion that followed.
At each monthly meeting of ROBS, there is a guest speaker on topics of great interest to its members. Our October meeting will feature a performance by the Long Island Classic Jazz Ensemble. You can check out the "Calendar of Events" page to see what other up-coming events will be. We hope to see you at our next meeting.
We would also like to remind you that at every meeting we accept canned food items for the Pronto Pantry.
SAD SHARING POSTED 10-5-15
Our dear friend and colleague, Sheila Sustrin, passed away this morning, October 5, 2015. Sheila retired from Laurel Park Elementary School in 1998 and was a member of the ROBS Executive Board in charge of Project Hope.
Her funeral will be private. Her sister Letty will be sitting Shiva on Thursday, October 8th, and Friday October 9th. Times: 12-3 P.M. and 6-8 P.M. Address: 39 Greenmeadow, Court, Deer Park, N,Y, 11729.
She requests that if you make any donation in Sheila's memory, please send it to one of these charities: Bide-a-wee, North Shore Animal League, or Little Shelter.
Sheia will be dearly missed.
Dear ROBS Members,
It's hard to believe that Autumn has arrived, and before you know it, the wonderful holiday season will be here. This time of year, we, the Retirees of Brentwood, count our blessings and think about those who are less fortunate than us.
Project Hope was created many years ago. The ROBS members adopt Brentwood families for the holiday season. These families are picked by us
from “Suburban Children of Bay Shore.” The parents and children are provided food and goodies for a wonderful “Thanksgiving Feast” in their homes, and we make sure that Santa Claus delivers toys and clothing for Christmas. Phyllis Goodwin is our fantastic Thanksgiving Coordinator.
We are asking you to open up your hearts once again this year and give a monetary contribution for this very worthy cause. Cash, or checks will be more than welcome. Collections will be starting at the October 2nd meeting. If you wish to mail in your contribution, please make the check out to ROBS, and on the memo line just write PH, and send it straight to:
39 Jeremy Circle
Nesconset, N.Y. 11767
We are eager to get started with our shopping, and our special elves; Lois Morella, Loretta Ellington, and Kris Dougherty, are all set to begin their work.
We are looking forward to a wonderful response from our membership, and we wish all of you a terrific Holiday Season.
Sheila & Letty Sustrin
Project Hope Co-Chairmen SAD SHARING POSTED 10/7/15
Doug Walters passed away on Saturday, October 3, after months of illness. Doug was the Coordinator of Health, Psychological and Social Work Services in the Brentwood School District.
There will be a memorial service for Dr. Douglas E. Walters on Monday 10/12/15 beginning at 7 pm and ending at 9 pm. This is not a viewing but a memorial service with presenters. The Memorial Service will be held at Maloney Funeral Home 132 Ronkonkoma Ave, Lake Ronkonkoma, NY 11779. Phone number 631-588-1515.
If you would like to send condolences to the Walters Family their address is: 6 Ashford Drive Lake Grove NY 11786.
RENEW YOUR ROBS 2015-2016 MEMBERSHIP POSTED 10/1/15
Just a reminder to our members to renew your ROBS membership for the coming year. You can download theMembership Application here and mail it along with your check for $25 dollars to Phyllis Goodwin, 114 East Rogues Path, Huntington Station, NY 11746 Make checks out to ROBS.
If you are not currently a member, please go to theMembership page of this site to learn more about the many benefits of joining ROBS. You can also download the application from that page.
We hope you will be joining us, and to our current members, thank you for your renewal.
How are we doing?
We'd like to hear from you. Please visit our
Letters to the Editor Pagewhere you can share your views and comments
Why did we do it? What was our purpose in taking on such an open ended “History Project”; for which we evolved a script of questions and got answers from over 150 subjects for two decades?
We couldn’t answer the question in 1994 when people would ask “What are you going to do with the interviews?” All we could say was that for educational purposes we had to document our record now or lose the chance to preserve so many poignant accounts, funny stories and touching tales told by exemplary educators. We knew these dedicated public servants might shortly, for reasons yet unknown, be leaving Brentwood for good.
So, we decided to let time sort out the details. We began scheduling appointments. We asked questions and listened saving for generations the essence of what it meant to have been an educator or employed, in this large public school system during the second half of the 20th century. Brentwood remains an exemplar to all others; a diverse microcosm of America reflecting 124 districts on Long Island while simultaneously resembling thousands across the U.S. We’ve accomplished something here to be proud of. Whether we were interviewed or not, ours is a claim of service that few professionals in the State of New York or elsewhere have positioned themselves to share in the way we have. INITIALLY the practice of sitting with a subject for an hour and giving them a hundred percent focused attention seemed somewhat daunting to a number of friends and colleagues. So much so in fact that many declined our repeated invitations to speak with us as they left careers or retired from full employment. Despite all assurances that we were not about investigative journalism or invading privacy, they deferred. Now, twenty years after we began, some are saying they may be ready. “Better late than never” we say. However, to all among you who were willing to share not only your classroom experiences and personal stories, but precious memories from your lives along with your fondest hopes for the future, we say “Thanks”. Thanks for allowing us to continue the process by paying it forward as we share these interviews with the Brentwood community and countless professionals and researchers near and far. Through an acceptance of ROBS offer of collaboration with Archivist Dr. Geri Solomon and The Long Island Studies Institute at Hofstra University our History Project lives on in academia as well as in the collection of the Brentwood Public Library, thanks to Director, Thomas A. Tarantowicz.
Enjoy unlimited visits to www.robsny.org where you can watch and listen to segments from featured Interviews in the ROBS History Project Section on our Announcements Page each month. Return here to listen and learn again and again.
THIS MONTH'S FEATURED HISTORY PROJECT
Elementary Education Teacher
Florence Alice Paffe Corkery was born on February 1, 1918 in the Bushwick section of Brooklyn. She sat for her interview close to two decades short of a century later on November 9th, 2000 after retiring in 1983 at 65 culminating a twenty year teaching career in Brentwood. She was living in Bayport in eastern Suffolk, where she’d lived since moving there in 1954. Florence came to Brentwood in 1963, the year JFK was assassinated, and for the first time in recorded history his assassin was murdered in front of a live afternoon TV audience. She was still teaching as the flow of events ushered in an age of increasing violence touching even the tranquil suburban Hamlet of Brentwood. She remembers earning $5,200 her first year and receiving a $300 raise her second year.
Her life was full but not without tragedy. In 1989 her husband John passed away as a result of a heart condition. She had known John since they were 7 and 8 years old. He was her best friend and always watched over her. In 1940 she married her childhood sweetheart and they lived in Bushwick at a time when " Brooklyn was the world". John saw active service in the Pacific theatre during WWII. He was a loving and devoted father to their children Florence, Kate and John. As the family grew they moved to Woodhaven and then to Bayport. Florence and John spent six years enjoying her retirement by traveling throughout the USA and the Caribbean.
Florence’s mother was born in Northern Ireland and came to the U.S. at 15 years of age. She became a maid and a cosmetologist. She was from a large Irish family and had many cousins. Her father was her hero and as an avid Dodger fan passed his love of baseball to his daughter even though physical education had been her least favorite subject in school. Marge Kirchner’s mother, who was one of 4 children, had been a dear friend of Florence’s, an only child, when they first moved to Brentwood. They had lived in the Bushwick section of Brooklyn and knew each other as teenagers.
One of Florence’s first full time jobs was at a Maritime Law Office. In 1938, it paid $16 a week plus overtime. Even back then, she’d wanted to teach, but there were no jobs available for teachers, so she went to school to take business courses in order to get temporary office positions. All her life she enjoyed sewing, cooking and to this day remains a morning person. While in Brentwood she discovered she loved assembly programs and blossomed as a dancing coordinator and costume maker. She loved reading to the children.
Flo began her formal education attending Public School 137 through the 8th grade. She met and never forgot Miss McGinnis when she was in the 6th grade and they would meet again many years later when joining her class in Woodhaven. That was when she found a love of history. She attended Girls High School for 4 years inclusive of 6th grade 7A and B and 8 A and B. Eventually she matriculated at St John’s University in Brooklyn from 1935-38 which she called her “subway college.” Tuition cost her $8 per credit. She graduated Summa Cum Laude from St. John’s and still has her authentic sheepskin diploma. She continued her graduate work at Dowling ending with a BA plus 60 credits, 13 of them in Elementary Education.
When Florence arrived in Brentwood her introduction to the school district came following her meeting with Mrs. Grim at Pine Park Elementary School. She had fond memories of her time working there with Mrs. Grim, Herb Fishman and Les Black. She tells a story about the year she had a student teacher who brought a snake to class that managed to escape from its enclosure and was discovered hiding safely in the heating unit of her classroom once the entire building had found itself pulled into the story. She remembered her first years in Brentwood as being comfortable, with plenty of fun and loving every minute of her introduction to teaching 2nd and 3rd grade. She became very involved in BTA during the late 1970’s.
It was in 1975 that her son opened a neighborhood bar and grill convincing Florence to become his partner. She soon became well known in the community and was known affectionately as “Mom” by many of their customers. Some of her former students became regulars at the bar. Asked what advice she could pass along to those following in her footsteps, she said “always watch – keep your eyes open and listen”.
You can also view any of these past interviews by visiting History Project Interview Archives :
Baker Bazata, Eleanor
Baker Bernhardt, Ruth
Laub, Dr. Herb
Sustrin, Letty and Sheila
Walker Lloyd, Shirley
The Town Crier" was set up a number of years ago so that the retirees of the Brentwood School District could have an email center to stay in touch. Since I began to send out all sorts of information, retirees from all over the country have sent me their email addresses. Some have asked, "Do you have any idea where so and so is?" Others have sent proud news of their accomplishments, their family news, photos,etc. and sadly, we often get bad news. Many retirees whom I have never met write me to thank me for keeping this connection going, as everyone remembers the Brentwood years with warm feelings.
BRENTWOOD HS 2ND HALL OF FAME INDUCTION POSTED 10/12/15
The Brentwood High School Boy’s Basketball program will hold its 2nd Hall of Fame induction on Saturday November 7th, at 6:00 pm in the Sonderling Senior Cafeteria.
The induction class will include 3 out of 7 Brentwood High School’s 1000 point scorers: Ray Valentin ‘70, Jamie Franklin ‘71, and Ron Stewart ‘81who was also captain of St John’s University Basketball team. Also being inducted will be Chuck Everson ‘82, who was a member of the 1985 Villanova NCAA Champions; Jack Scalia ’69, who helped Brentwood win their first championship; and Phil, Kevin and Greg Dixon class of ‘74, ‘76, and ‘80 respectively, who continued Brentwood’s early championship run under Coach Kellner and continue to volunteer teaching basketball to the Brentwood youth.
The inaugural class included County Champion Coaches Stan Kellner, Marty Riger and Bob Tagner as well as Mitch Kupchak, the current Los Angeles Lakers GM, who was Brentwood’s career scoring leader and an Olympic and college basketball standout at the University of North Carolina.
Tickets can be purchased for $25 – buffet dinner included. Checks made out to Brentwood Athletic Booster Club should be mailed to: Anthony F. Felicio Administration Building, Attention: Athletic Office, c/o Val Rueb, 52 Third Ave., Brentwood, NY 11717.