*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
IMPORTANT DATES   IN THE NEWS                                                                        OCTOBER 2017

October 6

General Membership Meeting

October 19
Executive Board Meeting

Meeting Dates


POSTED 10/2/17
     You can find the membership application card for you to fill out on page 4 of the latest copy of the ROBS Newsletter, which you will be receiving in the mail.  If you do not receive the newsletter, you can download the Membership Card here. The membership fee is $25. New members can also use this card to join ROBS and go to the ROBS Membership Page on this website for more information on joining ROBS and downloading the card..     
      Simply fill out the card, and indicate if there are corrections to be made to your current listing in the directory. Return the card addressed to Carmen Roldan, 49 Linda Lane, North Babylon, NY 11703. Include your check made out to ROBS for $25 with "Dues" written on the memo line.    

POSTED 10/27/17
     Tim Embree, Sonderling High School Security Guard, passed away. Tim's wife is Suzanne Belanger Embree, Brentwood graduate and a member of the Brentwood Board of Education for 15 years. They have a young son, Aidan. The following information was kindly provided by Sue Belanger Embree. Please keep Tim's family in your thoughts and prayers.
    Tim was forced to retire from school last year due to a rare and aggressive form of Thyroid cancer. It took his voicebox and he was no longer able to speak. It was life changing. We moved down to South Carolina 6 months ago to start a new life, after his first fight with cancer. But it came back stronger than ever. On Friday October 20, 2017, my husband, Timothy Embree lost his battle to cancer. He fought only for a short time after being diagnosed but he truly gave it everything he had.
     I am overwhelmed with all of the love, support and memories of Tim. He touched so many people's lives. I loved hearing his stories about all of his Brentwood family when he came home from work. He truly loved what he did and being a part of your world. Thank you for loving him the way you did. Tim was the love of my life, my soulmate, and I will miss him forever. Aidan and I are just heartbroken over losing Tim. But we know he is watching over us.
     Our home address:
481 Westham Drive
Murrells Inlet, SC 29576


POSTED 10/3/17
      Letty Sustrin will be hosting a book launching on October 8, 2017 for the last book of the series entitled The Teacher Who Would Not Retire Retires. This book is dedicated in memory of her twin sister and co-author, Sheila Sustrin. A light buffet lunch will be set out for you to enjoy during the performance. Each guest will receive a special gift from Mrs. Belle. Doors open 12:00 Noon. Reading begins promptly at 1:00 P.M. YMCA Boulton Center, 37 W. Main Street, Bay Shore, N.Y. 11706 Tel.#: 631-969-1101. View the flier for more details.

POSTED 10/18/17
     Joyse Trespel passed away. She retired from the Brentwood School District in 1995. Joyse Trespel was a great person and a devoted, compassionate teacher. She worked at Laurel Park Elementary for many years for Andrew Lovitto and then at South Middle School when the 6th grades moved up from the elementary schools. She began teaching in the late 60's at East Elementary until it closed. She moved to Port St. Lucie, Florida when she retired. Our condolences go out to her family.

POSTED 10/18/17
     It is with great sadness that we inform you of the passing of Barbara Callan, who suddenly passed away after a brief illness. Barbara was the mother of John Callan Jr., Principal of Brentwood High School and wife of 46 years to retired high school Social Studies Department Chair, John Callan. Our prayers and heartfelt sympathies are extended to John Callan and his family.
      Funeral Services are being held in South Carolina. Dunbar Funeral Home 3926 Devine Street Columbia, SC 29205 Condolences may be sent to John Callan, Sr. @ 205 Deer Crossing Road, Elgin, SC 29045. John Callan, Jr. @ 406 Hewlett Ave., E. Patchogue, 11772. In lieu of flowers, the family would like to start a BHS scholarship fund in Barbara’s name. A memorial service will be held on Long Island at a later date. Details to follow.
Newsday 10/17/17 Notices

POSTED 10/10/17
     Josie Rashkin, the wife of Steve Rashkin, passed away this week. Steve, a school psychologist, retired from the Freshman Center and also worked at North Middle School for many years.
     The wake for Josie will be on Thursday, October 12th from 4:00 pm to 8:00 pm at:
Christopher T. Jordan Funeral Home
302 Long Beach Road
Island Park, NY 11558
     Condolences can be sent to Steve at 18 Lynbrook Ave., Point Lookout, NY 11569
     Please keep the family in your thoughts and prayers.

POSTED 10-22-17
   Several members of ROBS, John Sherin, Barbara Mascaro, Karen Riley, and Ellen Edelstein, arranged to make a generous book donation for the Books to Home event this past June. In appreciation, they received a letter of thanks from Ann Palmer, Brentwood School's Coordinator of Language Arts and Social Studies. You can view the letter here.
POSTED 10/23/17
   On Election Day, November 7, there will be a very important vote on whether or not there should be a Constitutional Convention. It will appear on the back of the ballot. We urge you to vote NO. To be informed before you vote, please read "How Could a NYS Constitutional Convention Affect Your Family and You?"
How are we doing?
We'd like to hear from you.
Please visit our
Letters to the Editor

where you can share your views and comments

View the In Memoriam page with the list of our Brentwood colleagues who have passed away. This list will be updated on a yearly basis.
NYSUT Website

Support VOTE-COPE with your voluntary contribution. Download the VOTE-COPE Contribution Card here.

October 10
Executive Board Meeting

October 24

General Meeting
Welcome Back Brunch

November 2
2017 NYSUT Regional Conference on LI
Registration Form

RC 21 Website: http://rc21.ny.aft.org

Sheila & Letty Sustrin
Children's Books Authors

John M. Sherin
Local /Regional
(Jigsaw Maps)600
Geography Manipulatives

Complete Team Building Kits
Teaching Cooperation/ Collaboration
Emotional Intelligence (EQ)

Alida Thorpe
Island Vision Photography, Inc.

Rick Mundy
Watercolor Prints of L.I., Adirondacks, NYC...

Gloria Hannemann
Hardwood Flooring and
Home Improvement

Elmon Kazandjian
NYC Art Gallery

Rose Marie Brousseau
Brentwood Rotary Club

Ronda Brooks
Children's Social Skills Groups

Check out the Famous People and Events on that special day in October see what else happened!
Historical People and Events for October
October 2017 Holidays, Bizarre, Unique, Special Days
Bizarre and Unique Holidays in October
All About October
October in History
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. W
e 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.


Maddy Dwyer
Elementary School Teacher
November 4, 1999

     Madeline Diana Lazaro Dwyer retired from the Brentwood School District after 31 years of service in 1995. Her maternal grandmother who she remembered fondly died in 1990 at the age of 94. She knew all of her grandparents. Her mother’s family came to America from Greece. Her grandmother was born in 1900 and came here with parents. Sometime during the voyage or when they arrived at Ellis Island everything they had brought with them including gold jewelry secured in a steamer trunk was stolen. Her father was sent back to Greece. Her mother also had to return and then lost her entire family (nine brothers and sisters) who all died in a kind of epidemic. She was sent back when she was only eight and brought up by an aunt and grandmother. She was married at sixteen in an arranged marriage and raised six children. She was a very strong woman with an old world perspective but who was in many ways quite modern. She had her first baby at seventeen and a child every two years after that; three girls and three boys.      Maddy grew up with a very close extended family who all lived in Franklin Square on the same block. They continue to be close and get together regularly on holidays, and on mother’s and father’s day. The cousins have stepped up now and take turns hosting their visits. She enjoys seeing the family grow through the generations.
     Her dad had one brother. His father (her paternal grandfather) came from either Poland or Russia, she wasn’t sure where. Her paternal grandmother died when Maddy was four, so she doesn’t know as much about them as she knows about her mother’s family. This grandfather lived into his eighties. She remembers them as being in the manufacturing business.
    Her mother was and remained at the time of this interview very family oriented. Being brought up in a Greek family, Maddy saw her mother as old fashioned in that she went from being dependent upon her father to being dependent upon her husband. Though a woman with a mind of her own she was still submissive to male authority. Maddy struggled against that submissive part of herself given her father’s strong paternal nurturing influence and the modeling role in her life.
    She lived in Centereach with her husband Tom who has a son and a daughter and two grandchildren. Scott lived in Babylon and Lynn was in San Diego and San Francisco, California. She was an Environmentalist with the EDF (Environmental Defense Fund) Maddy and Tom visited regularly.
    Born in Bensonhurst which was a very nice neighborhood in Brooklyn in 1942, she moved from there when very young. She spent her early childhood with her brother going between her mother and grandmother’s homes. Her brother was a year and a half her junior. Her earliest memories include walking to her grandmothers with him, and as she said, “you could do that in those days”. “I was five and we were allowed to do that” She remembers going marketing on 86th St with her mother and grandmother in the post-war period prior to the advent of supermarkets. She was the oldest cousin in the family and was given lots of responsibility to keep her eyes on the younger ones.

Maddy Dwyer
   Her family had a house in Rockaway and she remembers going to the beach and staying there with aunts and uncles when everyone was together. Her father would take all the kids into the ocean before they left, to wash off sand.”Don’t be afraid I won’t drop you”, just as a wave hit them both and took her away for a few minutes. She says she’s been afraid of the water ever since that day.
   Her biggest adult influences other than that of her parents were her aunts and uncles. They were always present. We (the entire extended family) moved to Bayside which was semi-rural at the time. Her first paying job was through Adelphi College and it was at Great Eastern (one of the first discount stores).She had previously worked as a receptionist for her father who was in the garment industry as a sales rep for men and boys robes. They were located on 5th Ave close to the Empire State Building.   
    She was a constant reader while growing up and lived in a world of her own. As a night person she could read all night long if allowed to. Spring was a favorite season. She also loves the crisp weather and colors of the fall.    
    She did her undergraduate work at Adelphi and took Graduate courses at Stony Brook University while teaching in Brentwood after arriving in the district in 1964. Now began the story of her professional life and career as a consummately dedicated and passionate master teacher of students and teachers alike. A creative force unto herself she was a courageous and dynamic educator till the end. Trace her story by watching and listening to her tell it in her own words from a point twenty six minutes into her interview until her heartfelt conclusion; her Certification K-12 in Social Studies, her interview and early years teaching 4th and 5th grade classes at North Elementary, her work as first Vice President and Executive Council Member of the Brentwood Teachers Association of NY State United Teachers, her work with the Salary Committee and as a team member and savvy negotiator with a sharp mind, the Sabbatical Committee Chair, who never applied for, or was granted a leave. She was District wide Drug Education Leader until her retirement at fifty three years of age when she accepted the New York State Retirement Incentive. Her work on local Brentwood History remains a legacy to her dedication to an extended appreciative professional family which she wholeheartedly embraced.
     When she passed away at the age of seventy four years on June 29th 2017, she had been predeceased by her father Al and her brother Marty. She was survived by husband Tom Dwyer of Babylon NY, her son Scott and Daughter Lynn of Patchogue NY, her mother Regina Lazaro, sister Helga, and brother Richard, her sister in law Ellen and two well loved nieces and nephews and dozens of cousins across the US,    
   Thankfully, with the help of ROBS (Retirees of Brentwood Schools), we were able to digitize her accessible earlier work on the History of Brentwood in the Pines by making it available to all surviving the Elementary Schools in the District, even though the Instructional Media Center (IMC) no longer exists.   

You can also view any of the past interviews by visiting History Project Interview Archives

View May 8, 2015 History Project Celebration Photo Album

View History Project Slide Show on YouTube

THE TOWN CRIER -  MarilynDePlaza@aol.com

Marilyn De Plaza
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.