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Smithtown Animal Shelter


Olivia (tortie) & Isabella (tux) are two year old declawed sisters, and boy do these gals have it all….good looks and super dispositions!! What more could you ask for? We would like “Livie” and “Izzy” to go home together….cause really the only thing better than one purrfect lady are two purrfect ladies!


The Smithtown Animal Shelter has many kittens for adoption, the little ones are handled and socialized by our volunteer staff they are friendly have their initial shots and de-worming.










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 People in the News


Commack Resident Janet Koch Takes Over As Executive Director Of Life's WORC

Janet Koch Announced as New Life’s WORC Executive Director

Janet KochMs. Koch has over 20 years of industry experience and expertise to help advance the mission of Life’s WORC.

Donald Barrick, Life’s WORC Board Chairman announced that Janet Koch has been hired as the new Executive Director of Life’s WORC, a 501(c) (3) not-for-profit corporation. Ms. Koch assumes this leadership responsibility as Peter Smergut retires after twenty (20) years in this position. After a thorough and extensive executive search process, the Life’s WORC Board is confident Ms. Koch has the vision and skills consistent with the needs of the organization. She will assume her position as Executive Director on Monday, November 3, 2014.

Since 2009, Ms. Koch, 44, has been the Chief Financial Officer of Life’s WORC, overseeing a $45M annual budget. Her introduction to the developmental disabilities field began more than twenty (20) years ago at Family Residences and Essential Enterprises (FREE) in Bethpage, NY. She is a native of Queens, NY who graduated from St. Francis Preparatory School, then earned a BBA in Business Administration from Dowling College, and an MS in Accounting from C.W. Post College/Long Island University.

Ms. Koch stated one of her primary goals is to evaluate the continuum of services, supports and programs offered through Life’s WORC in line with the significant challenges providers need to address in the coming years. “Life’s WORC has earned recognition and success for what it has accomplished,” she explains. “However, the paradigms it has been using are changing as dictated by new government mandates. Government’s role is shifting from a traditional fee for service funding partnership and moving towards a business model using the principles of a managed care environment. My concern lies in being able to effectively synthesize human needs with corporate efficiency and reduced funding.”

Life’s WORC (www.lifesworc.org) based in Garden City, NY was founded in 1971. The agency currently manages 36 homes and 12 non-residential programs throughout Nassau, Suffolk and Queens Counties providing programs and services to over 1,500 individuals with developmental disabilities and autism. Life’s WORC has established an excellent reputation in the provision of quality services and supports to people with developmental disabilities and autism. The organization has also ensured for its fiscal responsibility with 91 percent of the funds received by Life’s WORC being spent directly on the individuals supported in the agency homes and programs.

Ms. Koch will also oversee the Family Center for Autism, www.FCAutsim.org, an affiliate corporation of Life’s WORC. This new Center (located next door to Life’s WORC) is set to open in January 2015, and will offer a unique environment supporting individuals with autism and their families. This family centric model has been created to address a significant unmet need within our community.

Ms. Koch, and her husband, Harold Koch, are residents in Commack, NY and are the parents of three girls, ages eight and four-year-old twins. She is a Licensed Notary Public and is a member of the audit committee for the Commack Union Free School District board of trustees.


Commack's Scott Armstrong Wins Pumpkin Weigh-Off With 1,059 Pound Pumpkin

Armstrong Family with 1,059 pound pumpkin

(click on photos to enlarge)

Commack’s Scott Armstrong grows pumpkins, corn and garlic. The Armstrong family has gained notoriety for their giant pumpkins. For the second year in a row Scott has won the Hicks Marissa & Ava Armstrong 217 pound pumpkinNurseries Pumpkin Weigh-Off competition. Scott’s giant pumpkin weighed 1,059 pounds. This year’s entry was somewhat smaller than last year when Armstrong won the Hicks Nurseries competition with a 1,456 pound pumpkin.

Following in their father’s footsteps were daughters Marissa & Ava Armstrong. Their Junior Division entry weighed 217 pounds. 

George Boyd of Kings Park won second place for his 453 pound pumpkin during the Giant Pumpkin weigh-Off at Hicks Nurseries today. 

George Boyd with 453 pound pumpkinThe competition, held each October at the nursery, encourages homeowners and children to bring their pumpkin, no matter what the size, to the nursery to be weighed. It is a fun day for the growers to show off their skills and for families to enjoy hayrides, roasted corn, Otto the Ghost and much more.



Former Kings Park Residents Paul And Geri Renna Celebrate 60th Anniversary

Geri and Paul RennaPaul and Geri Renna of Sayville, formerly of Kings Park, celebrated their 60th wedding anniversary on October 10th.  A celebratory lunch at Casa Rustica was attended by their children, Robert and Andrea and their families. Congratulations!

(click on photo to enlarge)


Smithtown Resident Stephanie Mastrorocco Will Walk to Find a Cure on October 12 at Jones Beach

Smithtown’s Stephanie Mastrorocco Joins The Lustgarten Foundation and Nearly 8,000 Tri-State Area Residents in the Pancreatic Cancer Research Walk

Stephanie Mastrorocco Will Walk to Find a Cure on October 12 at Jones Beach

September 18, 2014 – Smithtown resident Stephanie Mastrorocco will honor her mother by joining nearly Stephanie with her mom and dad8,000 tri-state area residents at The Lustgarten Foundation’s 14th annual Long Island Pancreatic Cancer Research Walk. The walk will be held on Sunday, October 12, at Jones Beach.

The Lustgarten Foundation is the nation’s largest private foundation dedicated to funding pancreatic cancer research. Due to Cablevision’s support of the Foundation, 100 percent of every dollar that Stephanie and her fellow walkers raise will go directly to pancreatic cancer research.

Stephanie knows more than most about pancreatic cancer, the nation’s most lethal cancer. She is a longtime pharmaceutical representative specializing in this disease so Stephanie is well aware of its grim statistics. However, in June 2012 the disease became deeply personal when her mother, Rita Macchia, was suddenly diagnosed with pancreatic cancer. It was discovered after she went to the emergency room suffering from severe stomach pain. Despite this shocking news, Stephanie looked  for a way to fight back against this disease and for the first time registered her family and friends for the walk as Team “God’s Workers” to support her mother’s survival. Sadly, Rita passed away in March 2013. However, Stephanie and her family and friends will join the walk again this year still determined to help make a difference. 

Stephanie with her dadStephanie believes that participating in the walk is an uplifting way to honor her mother’s memory. And for Stephanie, it is also fulfilling to know that 100 percent of all money she raises goes directly to pancreatic cancer research.

“It is because of exceptionally dedicated individuals like Stephanie that we’re able to raise much-needed awareness of pancreatic cancer and to raise funds that will go directly toward advancing important research aimed at developing an early detection test, better treatments, and ultimately, a cure,” said Lustgarten Foundation Executive Director Kerri Kaplan. 

The Lustgarten Foundation’s Long Island Pancreatic Cancer Research Walk at Jones Beach will begin at 9:30 a.m. on Sunday, October 12, with registration starting at 8:00 a.m. For more information about the walk or to register, please visit www.curePC.org.




Continuing The Journey - Sister Patricia McDonnell Celebrates Her Diamond Jubilee

Sister PatDirector of Pastoral Care at St. Catherine of Siena Medical Center in Smithtown, Sister Patricia McDonnell, commemorated six decades of being a nun September 2014. She celebrates her very own diamond jubilee. Diamond, a Greek root word, meaning unconquerable and enduring—two words that capture the essence of the tremendously graceful and dedicated woman of virtue.

The Massachusetts native, addressed as Sister Pat throughout the facility, entered the Sisters of St. Joseph of Brentwood in 1954 shortly after completing high school.

Sister Pat had a yearning to grow both spiritually and academically. As she prepped for religious life, she also studied to become a teacher at St. Frances College in Brooklyn. After earning her Bachelors Degree, Sister Pat continued her education at the prestigious Fordham University, where she earned her Master’s Degree in Mathematics. With a certification to teach grades 7-12, she devoted more than 17 years inspiring and educating young students at high schools in both Brooklyn and Queens.

Her desire to learn did not end with one master’s degree—Sister Pat went on to earn a second Masters Degree in Religious Studies from Fordham University. It was after she received her religious studies degree that she began parish work at both Our Lady of Lourdes in West Islip and St. Elizabeth in Melville. Though she enjoyed teaching youth she discovered a passion for parish work, especially as the need grew on Long Island after World War II. “As parishes grew, parents needed to be educated as religious teachers—preparing them for spirituality and prayer,” said Sister Pat. After devoting 22 years of her time to parish work, Sister Pat was certified as a Mid-Life Director and was integral to the development of the adult education programs at the parishes.

Photo (L-R): St. Catherine’s Chief Operating Officer/Chief Nursing Officer Gara Edelstein, St. Catherine’s Executive Vice President/Chief Administrative Officer Paul J. Rowland, Director or Pastoral Care Sister Patricia McDonnell, Vice President of Finance John Pohlman, St. Catherine’s Nursing and Rehabilitation Care Center Chief Administrative Officer Jim Ryan, Vice President Medical Affairs, Chief Medical Officer Jason Golbin, DOSister Pat is a very humble and faithful individual and though she has embarked on such a jubilant time, celebrating 60 years of devotion to God, the church and its ministry—she sees no need for a fuss—simply  because ministry is her first passion. “I enjoy helping people deal with what’s going on in their life,” said Sister Pat. The work I do here at St. Catherine of Siena is the most meaningful work. I see the staff here working so hard and they are challenged by the health care issues of today—all I try to do every day is lift their spirits up by showing God’s love.”

While Sister Pat may be small in stature, her spirit is tremendously big and full of grace—and it shows every day. She is also full of a few surprises too. At the age of 39, she discovered an interest in skiing. Today, she has embraced the adventurous sport and takes annual vacations up to the beautiful and serene mountains not just to view the tranquil scenery, but to hit the slopes as well. She has even assisted with winter ski races. She also loves music and finds peace and fitness balance in the practice of yoga.

Sister Pat joined the pastoral care department at the medical center in 1996. She has ministered to staff, patients and visitors, one at a time and with the same level of compassion since the very first day she entered the facility 18 years ago.

St. Catherine’s Administration and staff honored Sister Pat at an internal celebration on Wednesday, September 17, 2014. St. Catherine’s Executive Vice President and Chief Administrative Officer Paul J. Rowland stated, “Sister Pat assists with the very important work of this ministry—we are here to celebrate her dedication and continued pastoral guidance.”

Sister Pat simply said “thank you all for allowing me to be a part of the family here at St. Catherine of Siena—I look forward to continuing the journey.”