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Wyckoff, Sandy, and Now

My THANKS to so many in Wyckoff !

For now, it’s just about over. My understanding is there are some homes without power but these are waiting for repairs to the electrical entrance. I hope and trust they shall join the rest of us soon. 

I am positive there will be some extensive postmortems on this one also. As there will be some angry complainers and many more people who will be giving thanks for the good people who staff our Town. I shall be among them. 

I am going to start this blog with my thanks to the Wyckoff Board of Health, Cindy (sorry never got your last name) and Carol Hertenstein. You have never heard of them probably. They are there working hard for the Town. Cindy was coordinating all the shelter efforts and the volunteers. Carol was the lead at the CHCC shelter. They both worked almost 24 hours a day. And they have done a fantastic and impressive job. Cindy assigned me to CHCC when I volunteered at the Town Hall for help out in any way. It has been a very rewarding experience for myself. I was able to work with so many wonderful people. Carol provided great leadership and at the same time her normal job PLUS coordinating placements. 

The Board of Health (BOH) did extensive wellness checks of all our seniors, constantly. More on this later. 

Christian Health Care Center and Powerhouse Church opened their doors to Wyckoff and beyond to provide a warm place to stay, meals and activities. CHCC provided overnight facilities also. My grateful thanks to Mr. Doug Struyk and Rev. Jeff Boucher for their kind and generous support of the community. As I was assigned to CHCC I have to add that Mr. Struyk visited the shelter area everyday to be sure all was fine. He offered the volunteers his support, his kindness and his hard work to make sure all was well. I am positive Boucher did the same. My grateful thanks to these fine men and organizations also! And I can see the comments coming. Remember that the first word of CHCC is and what it truly means. The Board of Directors and Mr. Struyk are that word first and foremost. They live up to what we, as Christians, believe first. So let’s not muddy any waters here. 

Next are Mr. Scott Fisher and the entire DPW staff. OUTSTANDING! I know you are all still working so very hard. On behalf of my neighbors and myself I thank you for cutting out the three trees so we had access to the rest of the world! I hope everyone reading this will also thank them all. 16 hour days are not very easy when it is cold, windy, raining, and you’re trying to operate a chain saw. 

My thanks to Mr. Bob Shannon, our Town Administrator,  and his staff, to Mrs. Joyce Santimauro, our Town Clerk, and her staff and all the other Town staff for their dedication, the very hard work they did, and their stamina in keeping up with an ever changing crisis. They are the best you can find. As a reader you might just take a moment and thank them also. I saw Mr. Shannon at Town Hall, I think it was non-stop. He was on top of everything and doing everything within his power to get Wyckoff “back to normal”. Joyce and her staff manned the telephones, answered questions as best they could with as accurate information they had. They all have done a wonderful job in this time of need. 

ALSO the Wyckoff Volunteer Fire Department and the Wyckoff Ambulance Corps. You do not see them until you need them. They were THERE! And working as many long hours as everyone else in the Town. My thanks to them all. The extremely dedicated women and men who make up these organizations and THE BEST! From firsthand experience there was a Company Two fire truck on Cornell Street just moments after the third tree fell. The entire truck crew was out and about checking the safety of the area, going door to door, and putting up tape and cones to block traffic into safe area. Chief Rose was on site with the Wyckoff PD doing the same. THANKS very much! 

I think we should all give a word of thanks to our Wyckoff Police Department. In full disclosure Chief Ben Fox and Lt. Charlie Van Dyke are old friends of mine. I know them well. That said, I want to thank Chief Fox, Lt. Van Dyke, Lt. David Murphy, and everyone else, along with our dispatchers, for an OUTSTANDING performance. I know the word went out that if a policeman could not get to someone by car, walk to them then. And they did just that! 

Everyone should remember that when the world is crashing down, as it was last week, and it is extremely dangerous out there these are the people who are out helping you. They all put in long hours and yet they were there each and every day, sometimes two or more days and nights also. I am pretty sure that some of you will want to criticize our PD, don’t. Think first. 

These are the people risking everything for you. Be thankful and express your thanks to them! I would not have wanted to be a dispatcher during the last week. Remember they handle TWO towns. So stop in and say thanks! 

I know my words, next, will bring the greatest complaints and comments. But that is fine. You have a right to express yourself. Only please get your facts straight first and make your comments useful, not just something nasty to say for some unknown reason. 

Contrary to what I have read, our Mayor, Mr. Chris DePhillips was working his hardest and doing his best to keep the Town safe and sound. He has done his utmost for YOU. He left his family to serve YOU. I know because I saw him, everyday, at the Town Hall. I know he was tired. He went without sleep. But he was there, for YOU. He also spoke to anyone who wanted to speak with him. Maybe he wasn’t on the front steps. He was where we needed him to be. He was being our Mayor and our friend. Great job Mr. Mayor. I am very happy we have had you during this time. 

Mr. Rudy Boonstra, Mr. Doug Christie and Mr. Kevin Rooney all manned DPW and Fire trucks the night of Sandy and afterwards. I know this because I SAW THEM doing it! They too left their families for the greater good of Wyckoff and you, the residents. Each of them is fully dedicated to serve Wyckoff and its residents and their actions spoke volumes, if you listened. 

I saw each and every one of these members of YOUR TC in the trucks and in the Town Hall working to make your life safer. Maybe you didn’t, however they were out there. DO I need a public face? No I do not. I want my TC inside the Town Hall doing what they do, not on the front steps. And these men did just that, as they should. GREAT JOB! My thanks to each of you.  I did see Mr. Brian Scanlon in the Town Hall once, we greeted each other but he was going in the other direction. 

I also want to thank the Police Department, the Ambulance Corps, and the other volunteers who did the wellness checks on the seniors. I do know Ms. Jordon Rooney was volunteering to do this and had a large case load to follow up on. She did it so very well. I know, personally, that she checked on some of the seniors who were at CHCC. How do I know this? I asked her. And THANKS Carol ! I was honored to work with you! Your dedication to Wykoff, your patients, your concern for everyone that came in the shelter was beyond anything I have ever seen. You are FANTASTIC ! Thanks everyone for your kindness to our seniors and your dedicated concern for them.

To close this out everyone who was out there working, in the Town Hall working and the professional staffs and volunteers at the shelters did a fantastic job! I know most are way too modest to say anything and I know many will not stop to thank them. But I will say it for them and I will THANK them all, on behalf of myself and all my neighbors. May God Bless you all. 

I am sure this will all draw some fire. If you want to chastize me for writing this, knock yourself out. I am an old big boy I can take it. But very honestly, if you cannot bring yourself to say something good here, I believe the very least you could do is to shut up. There are times and places, in public, not behind some truncated screen name to do just that. I will always hope that you might support me here and do your part to thank everyone in the Town operation. And even thank your neighbors who showed you a small kindness also. Wyckoff is full of great people who think of others and help them. We should be grateful we have them and we should show that with our thanks to them. 

I have read a lot of critics over the last days also. When you do that, as it has been done, it is not constructive, but very destructive. YES you should speak your mind. But make sure you have facts and truth before you speak. We need constructive critics. If you wish to speak your mind, then come to a TC meeting and take the microphone. You have TWO chances, at any meeting, to do just that. THAT is the forum you should use. It is why we have open TC meetings. They are YOUR Township Committee. I will guarantee you that you will be met with respect, concern and kindness. Take the politics out and you will find out that the TC is made of five very honorable men. And maybe, before you all start complaining about the members of the TC, the very least you could do is meet them, face to face? Too much to ask? 

I will be at the next meeting as I have some concerns of my own. But I will bring them to the Committee, as a resident, speaking publicly, on the record. I hope you will do the same, there and then. 

At this time, in this place, we need to stop the nasty comments and offer God and all the people of this Town our thanks for the great jobs they have done and continue to do.

This post is contributed by a community member. The views expressed in this blog are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of Patch Media Corporation. Everyone is welcome to submit a post to Patch. If you'd like to post a blog, go here to get started.

Carrol DiNapoli November 10, 2012 at 06:07 PM
Just a note to let you know that the home town crowd that moved away has been thinking of you all during this time. It has been very disturbing to read the criticism of the people doing the best job that they can to bring order back to your town. I have lived in Florida for the past 30 years, and we are used to living without power due to storm issues.I agree it's not fun, but as you see, it isn't the end of the world either. I am glad that things are getting back to normal for you. I can't say the same for those who live at our beloved "Jersey Shore". God Speed.
John A. Unglert November 10, 2012 at 06:46 PM
HI CARROL !!!! I was just on your street, and stopped at your old house !
Carrol DiNapoli November 10, 2012 at 07:18 PM
Hi!! I was in town a few years back and was overwhelmed by the fact that a 2nd story was added to it! I am so sorry that we lost touch over the years. It seems as though you are very involved with the town politics and "goings on". I have made it a point to come "home" every couple of years. Unfortunately, usually for funerals and such. The last time I was home was when "Frank the barber" passed. Hope you have been well!
Pam P November 11, 2012 at 05:24 PM
Agree! Like!!


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