Way We Were


Way We Were, for the week ending May 17, 2019

Published: May 16, 2019 at 03:00 pm

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May 27, 1994

Planning and Zoning Commission (P&Z) members have approved an amendment to the zoning regulations that drops the minimum age of “elderly” persons eligible to live in multiple-family complexes for the elderly from 62 to 55, in some cases. P&Z members on May 19 approved the revised zoning rules which were requested by Attorney Stephen Wippermann on behalf of his client, developer Louis DeFilio. Mr DiFilio is seeking preliminary approvals to build a 90-unit condominium complex for the elderly in an EH-10 Zone off Walnut Tree Hill Road and known as Walnut Tree Village. The site includes 18.4 acres east of Walnut Tree Hill Road, opposite the road’s intersection with Evergreen Road. Mr DiFilio is expecting to submit a site plan for the project to P&Z in coming weeks.

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The “lost and found” at the manager’s office in the Edmond Town Hall is filled with unclaimed items. Eyeglasses, hats, scarves, umbrellas, jewelry, jackets, and children’s books are among the items which have been abandoned at the town hall. If the owners don’t claim them, the items will soon be donated to charity; eyeglasses will go to the Lions’ Club project for the visually handicapped. Stop by the manager’s office or call Edie at 270-4285 to trace a lost item.

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OVER THE BACK FENCE: Several milestones — anniversaries if you like — are being or will be observed this year. Many are dates relating to our history. It hardly seems possible that 50 years have passed since WWII. In the space of a Sunday afternoon in 1942 our lives were changed. It affected every one of us in some way. And this year, those who were then young and helping to meet the crisis, at war or on the home front, are remembering. Pilgrimages to the scenes of their war years are happening over and over again. Unless we look hard at history, we don’t understand how one dastardly act caused so much pain. Memories of all kinds are connected to those years. A lot has been written about the fighting, the soldiers far from home, the hardships and horrors, and the years since then. I was thinking of one small household and what it meant, in the way we lived. We were luckier than most; We lived in Monroe on a small farm where we had big gardens, chickens, eggs, heifers, and a cow that gave more milk than I ever knew what to do with! In just a few weeks, America lived up to its name — United States of America. Those on the homefront united, and we had Rosie the Riveter and women in war effort jobs of all kinds The ladies put away their frills and laces and donned sturdy work clothing, and they did whatever called upon to do.

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An inmate who started a melee last year at Garner Correctional Institution during an attempted escape has been sentenced to 70 years in prison. Robin Elliott, 43 was sentenced Friday for punching a guard unconscious and taking another hostage during the attempted escape from the Newtown prison on June 5, 1993. Four others have been convicted for their roles in the ensuing disturbance. Elliott struck officer Eric Williams unconscious before trying to escape through a drain. After he failed, he took officer Sheri Privott hostage while holding a sharp metal clip to her neck. Lt Sean Sullivan switched places with officer Pivott and convinced Elliott to surrender. Elliott was charged with unlawful restraint, attempted escape, second-degree assault, possession of a weapon in a correction institution and assault on a corrections employee. Judge Edward Stodolink used a special classification for Elliott, a persistent serious felony offender, to upgrade the maximum penalty for each offense. He faced up to 85 years in prison instead of 50. Elliott has spent nearly all of his adult life in prison.

 

May 23, 1969

If you happen to be speeding along Newtown’s roads these days, and are unaware of how fast you are going, the police are now in a position to give you that information. And if the pace is extravagant, you can also get a warning or a ticket. This bit of instant information comes from the radar device now in use when pictures were taken on Monday morning on Glover Avenue. Two warnings were issued in a brief period of time, with Officer Robert DeGannaro at the speed chart and Officer Dave Lydem in the chase car. Money for this radar was approved by the voters and is included in the forthcoming budget.

***

At the regular Board of Selectmen meeting in the lower meeting room of the Edmond Town Hall Tuesday, May 20, First Selectman Timothy B. Treadwell reported that a letter from the North Newtown Homeowners Association had been sent to Theodore Bampton, State Agriculture and Resources Department, Board of Fisheries and Game Director, protesting the building of a public boat ramp off Hanover at the mouth of Pond Brook. Over 75 residents directly affected by perilous traffic on Hanover Road resulting from this ramp have signed a petition strongly opposing it. Mrs Andrei Hudiakoff, representing the association, said that many more sympathizing with the association would be willing to add another petition if needed. Mr Treadwell said that he had been in a conference with Dunlap and Associates, experts in surveying and evaluating traffic hazards and that he would further investigate the menace of such a public ramp in that particular location, with the police and representatives of the Dunlap firm, and have a report for the Board of Selectmen at the next meeting on June 3.

***

The Newtown Park and Recreation Commission has been meeting regularly with Cahn Engineers Inc of New Haven, the firm studying ways of improving the town park pool. According to commission Chairman William Honan, the engineers have completed the first phase of their study of the pool and its surrounding environment. Soil samples have been taken. It is expected in four to six weeks that specific recommendations on methods of improving the pool will be made to the Park and Recreation Commission.

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A couple of hundred or so of his friends and patients came on Sunday afternoon, May 18, to wish Dr Lawrence Daum well at the opening of his handsome new professional building on Church Hill Road, just east of The Bee. Dr Daum’s spacious offices are on the ground floor. Done in the best contemporary furnishings and beautiful colors, they are a pleasant change from the ordinary and almost a rest cure for any patient. The upper floor is available for other doctors’ sunny and well-arranged offices. The new building is a credit to the town and judging from the large number of guests at the party on Sunday, many other people approve of the final result of five years of planning and design.

***

The Concerned Citizens on Narcotics Committee received its first monetary contribution Thursday, May 15, from the Christ The King Lutheran Church of Newtown. Funds are sought for the sponsorship of further drug seminars on drug use and abuse. The committee meets every Thursday at 8 pm in cafeteria A at Newtown High School.

 

May 26, 1944

William Shepard of Naugatuck was a caller at The Bee offices Wednesday afternoon, recalling the years from 1893 to 1897 when he was a member of the Bee staff. In those days all type was set by hand and many hours were needed to hand-feed the press, printing two pages at a time. Mr Shepard then spent a good many years with the Naugatuck News, still living in Naugatuck and spending his winters at Clearwater, Florida.

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Saturday evening’s special town meeting with some thirty taxpayers and voters in attendance passed a resolution authorizing the selectmen to borrow a sum not to exceed $3,500 to settle a claim for damages recently presented by Dr Walter A Nolander to reimburse him for the loss of trees and shrubs caused by a grass fire that spread from Flat Swamp school. Judge Paul V. Cavanaugh was chairman of the meeting, with Town Clerk May E. Sullivan as clerk.

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It is of much interest to note rehearsals have been held recently at “Far Away Meadows,” the Newtown home of Mr and Mrs Valentin Parera, in preparation for a Red Cross benefit performance of “Tosca” on May 31 in Montreal. The performance will be conducted by Emil Cooper, with Grace Moore, soprano, Alexander Sved, baritone, and Charles Kullman in the principal roles. Rehearsing with Miss Moore at “Far Away Meadows,” were Alexander Sved and Emil Cooper.

***

Frank Gavel of Roxbury, pitcher of the Washington High School team, did what many schoolboys dream of but seldom accomplish. In the game with Bethel High School last Friday, not one of the Bethel boys got beyond third base, and they were unable to garner one hit from the offerings of Gavel, who is a sophomore. He and his teammates seemed to have the situation in hand at all times. During the game thirteen of his opponents were struck out, with the infield retiring the rest of the Bethel boys. It may also be said that his teammates did not make any errors, and they combined their hits in such a way as to overcome their opponents with a score of 16-0. In their last game of the season, Washington High School players managed to collect fifteen hits at the expense of Whitlock and Carlson of the Bethel nine.

***

Members and friends of the Newtown P.T.A. are reminded of the June meeting which will be held at Hawley School on Tuesday evening, June 6. There will be an election of officers and a program by the school children. Details will be in next week’s Bee.

 

May 23, 1919

EDWARD J. KEANE MEETS DEATH IN FRIGHTFUL AUTO ACCIDENT; AUTO DRIVEN BY HERMAN BOCK TURNS TURTLE IN MIDDLEBURY SUNDAY AFTERNOON: A frightful accident took place in Middlebury Sunday afternoon about 5 o’clock in which Edward Keane, a highly esteemed Newtown young man, was instantly killed, and three other men, Herman Block of Newtown (familiarly known as ‘Hiney’ Block), and Benjamin Robertson and Frederick Odell of Bridgeport, were more or less injured. It appears that the four young men had been to Saybrook Junction for a day’s fishing. Block is a chauffeur for the Locomobile Co. of Bridgeport and at the time of the accident was driving, it is said, one of the high power machines put out by his company. They were at a point one mile east of Middlebury Center when a tire blew up. Coroner John T. Manzani of Waterbury informs The Bee that the car turned completely over and landed on its wheels. Dr Crane, medical examiner, reported to the coroner that Keane was probably instantly killed.

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Sergt James W. Crick returned, Wednesday, to Base Hospital No. 10, Boston Mass., after attending the funeral of one of his most intimate friends, Edward Keane.

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When oh when is Commissioner Bennett going to get into action in putting on men enough to repair the frightful condition into which the Newtown state roads have fallen? They are full of shell holes and it won’t be safe much longer to drive over them. The Men’s Club of Newtown, at its meeting Tuesday night, appointed a committee to lay the matter before the Commissioner’s office. A local citizen drove into one of the shell holes near the Madigan place one day this week and smashed his windshield. In town and out of town the auto men are cursing about the bad condition of the state highway in Newtown. The repair funds exhausted? A mighty lame excuse, it seems to us.

***

J.A. James has been sick in bed this week, suffering from swollen glands in the neck. Dr. W. H. Kiernan and Dr Chester Brown of Danbury have attended him.

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The Sandy Hook Baseball Association will give a dance at St. Mary’s hall Friday evening. Durgy’s orchestra will furnish music, and a first-class time is assured those who attend. Admission is 5c.

Please consider sharing your old photographs of people and places from Newtown or Sandy Hook with The Newtown Bee readers. Images can be e-mailed to kendra@thebee.com, or brought to the office at 5 Church Hill Road to be scanned. When submitting photographs, please identify as many people as possible, the location, and the approximate date.

 

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