As of this writing, the race for Nassau County executive is too close to call.
But seriously, who really cares? All the action is in New York City, where I spent an even four decades of my life, and where, for the first time since 1985, I was not able to cast a vote for mayor yesterday.
On the day before Rosh HaShanah last month, the newest synagogue in Far Rockaway was dedicated. Two members of the building committee of Agudath Israel of Bayswater affixed a mezuzah in a bronze case to the front door, Rabbi Menachem Feifer said some words of Torah, and nearly 200 members of the Jewish community sang and danced in joy.
The event culminated a three-year fund-raising campaign for the synagogue, whose members had been meeting for a decade in members' homes and rented space in the Queens neighborhood.
This week they have to start over.
Stuart Wolfer, who grew up in Dix Hills, L.I., surprised his parents on a visit back home during his freshman year in college when he announced he was going to join the ROTC military training program and eventually serve in the U.S. Army.
“We’re not army people. This is not your personality,” his father, Len, told him.
“I only go around once. I want to try everything,” Stuart Wolfer answered.
In a synagogue library in northern Westchester, a dozen senior citizens sit around a long table discussing current events. In a temple conference room on the Upper West Side, a young family talks about the tensions raised by a child’s serious illness. In the meeting room of a Long Island JCC, a group of recent widows share photographs and memories of their late husbands.
by Sharon Udasin
Eight years after the Twin Towers crumbled over downtown Manhattan, rescue worker Charlie Giles still wakes up regularly with nightmares of the North Tower collapsing on top of him, enveloping his body his flames and in suffocating debris. One night recently, he even woke up to find himself throwing things.
The news was devastating. Sandi Frank and her husband, Kenneth, had just been told that a rare form of cancer was spreading through the body of their 9-month-old son, Max.
Beside themselves, they reached out to family and friends for support. One of those friends turned to Lori Hardoon, director of the Partners in Dignity Program, who immediately drove from her office in Syosset to Schneider Children's Hospital in New Hyde Park, where the Franks were caring for their son.
Marcus Kranz escaped Hitler's gas chambers by working in a labor camp in Romania while the rest of his family (his sister and parents) perished.
But in a cruel irony, he and five others in his son's Long Island home succumbed to another kind of gas, carbon monoxide.
Police said the central air conditioner in the Roslyn Heights home of Kranz's son, Andrei, apparently circulated the deadly fumes from an improperly vented furnace that had been left on.
When Danielle Zeiler began seriously dating her husband-to-be, Scott Greenwood, she made it clear that if they married, their children would be raised Jews.
"He said fine, but then when we became engaged, he said he wanted his religion represented in the marriage also," recalled the 26-year-old. "I said we had a problem."
Another problem surfaced over the question of who would officiate at the marriage.
In the last six months, Temple Emanuel of Long Beach, L.I., opened its doors for a social adult day-care program for seniors with dementia. Seven seniors attend twice a week and the synagogue's spiritual leader, Rabbi Bennett Herman, described it as "probably the best example of group work activity I've ever seen."
As the new presiding officer of the Nassau Legislature (giving Democrats control for the first time since the county adopted a legislative form of government in 1917) Judy Jacobs vows to bring a new "openness" and "humanness" to a county government saddled with a $100 million budget deficit.