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Smithtown Animal Shelter


 Ramsey – Shep/Chow mix 3 years old male/neutered up to date on vaccines. Ramsey loves to play with his toys and go for walks. He is affectionate and playful but would be best placed with older children and a home without other dogs.




  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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April at Sunken Meadow




 People in the News


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.” 



Smithtown Historical Society Honors Community Leaders At Oct. 16 Heritage Ball

Smithtown Historical Society Honors Community Leaders at Heritage Ball

In appreciation for their leadership, generosity, service, and vision in protecting, preserving, and promoting Smithtown’s distinct history, the Smithtown Historical Society will be recognizing four exceptional individuals from the community at this year’s annual Heritage Ball. Scott Posner, Glenn Williams, and Inge Sobel with Kathryn Tusa will be presented the Partnership in History, Anna Blydenburgh, and Rockwell Awards respectively. 

Kathryn Tusa, Rockwell AwardThrough their participation in civic organizations, their businesses, and volunteerism, each of these Scott Posner - Partnership in History Awarddistinguished persons have made significant contributions to ensure Smithtown’s history is cared for and shared with the community. “Their support in sharing our mission is substantial and we are grateful to be able to celebrate their efforts,” remarked Executive Director Kiernan Lannon. Mr. Posner is a Financial Advisor for Edward Jones. He is the founder of the Deepwells Farm Historical Society and is active in the St. James Chamber of Commerce and Smithtown Rotary. Mr. Williams is the President of  Williams and Williams, Inc., a Smithtown insurance agency. He is a supporting member of the Smithtown Chamber of Commerce and Rotary Club and a former Smithtown Historical Society Trustee. Mrs. Sobel is an office manager at a Smithtown law firm and has been a Smithtown Historical Society Trustee for more than 10 years.  In addition to serving as an executive officer for multiple terms, she has also filled several leadership roles as a volunteer for many of  Smithtown Historical Society’s Glenn Williams, Anna Blydenburgh Awardeducational programs and fundraising events. Mrs. Tusa is a practicing attorney and a Inge Sobel, Rockwell Awardmember of the Suffolk County Bar Association and Women’s Bar Association. She has sat on the Planning Board for the Village of Head of the Harbor, and currently serves as a Smithtown Historical Society Trustee and Board Secretary, as well as a supportive and energetic program and event volunteer.

The Heritage Ball will take place on Thursday, October 16th at the Watermill in Smithtown beginning with a cocktail hour at 6:30p.m., followed by a Presentation of Awards & Dinner Dance at 7:30 p.m. Reservations are required for this event. Please call the Smithtown Historical Society at (631) 265-6768 for additional information or to make your reservation.


Grand Marshal Ball Set To Honor KP Brother And Sister James Kirby and Margaret Kirby Foley

KP St. Patricks Day Parade 2015 Grand Marshals James Kirby and Margaret Kirby FoleyKings Park St. Patrick’s Day Parade Committee proudly announces two Grand Marshals for the 2015 Parade. They are brother and sister James Kirby and Margaret Kirby Foley.

They have both devoted themselves unselfishly to their community and family their entire lives.  James and Margaret along with siblings Pat and Dennis are the children of Peg and Dennis Kirby.  Their grandparents hailed from County Mayo.

James married his lovely wife Beatrice and raised two beautiful children, Kelly and their son James Jr. whom sadly they lost this year.  They have two wonderful grandchildren, Allison and Jimmy.

Margaret married the love of her life, Frank and together have raised seven children; Patricia, Mary, Michael, Dennis, Thomas, James and Mark.  They have been blessed with seven grandchildren and a great grandchild, Aubrey Jean.  Sadly, Frank passed away in 2011 as did their son Tommy in 2013.

James is a proud United States Navy WWII Veteran who served as Commissioner of the Suffolk County Department of Social Services from 1965 until he retired in 1983.  he also served as Secretary and assistant Treasurer for the Board of Fire Commissioners, Smithtown Fire Department from 1990 through 2008.  James also received his Bachelors of Science Degree from Adelphi University in 1959.

Margaret attended St. Catherine’s Hospital Nursing School in Brooklyn and cared for the community members while working at Huntington Hospital, St. John’s Hospital in Smithtown and St. Johnland Nursing Home in Kings Park.

So Save the Date - Grand Marshal Ball - Friday, November 28, 2014 at Flowerfields, St. James, N.Y. Honoring James Kirby and Margaret Kirby Foley, Grand Marshals - Cocktail hour begins at 7:00 pm


People In The News - Kings Park Resident Ronie Pollacco

Ronie Pollacco - Sept. 2014

By Chris Biancaniello

Ronie Pollacco speaks four languages (English, Italian, French, Spanish), he’s lived in Italy, New York City, Ibiza, Bali, Milan, and France. Ronie Pollacco is by every definition a citizen of the world. Even at the age of eighty and battling Parkinson’s Disease, he is still lively as ever. I was granted the privilege to sit down and talk with him about how his life had taken shape. He showed me photographs of his travels, kids, past loves, and family members. Despite all of the things Ronie is today, and all of his travels, one of the most interesting things about Mr. Pollacco is the story of his childhood.

If you’ve done the math you’ve realized that Ronie was born in 1934. What’s more, Ronie was born in Italy to a Jewish family in 1934. Though Italy is rarely the focus of our World War II history lessons, Italians faced the same horrors as the rest of Europe: fascism, war, and not the least of which, anti-Semitism. In fact, an estimated 7,500 Italian Jews were killed during the holocaust and that is out of a pre-war population of just 44,000.

Ronie PollaccoLuckily for Ronie, his parents were extremely alert to all that was occurring. His father had been arrested twice by Fascists for violating anti-Semitic laws, though Ronie can’t remember which specifically, the laws varied anywhere from not being able to hire help, to not being allowed to own a business. “My father said ‘I’m an Italian, I’ve always been a good Italian, I don’t have to worry about anti-Semitism.’” says Ronie who was just a young boy at the time of his father’s arrest. Although he was only four, the memory of his father’s arrest remains with him today  “I was sitting under the table, my mother was sitting by the kitchen door, my sister was practicing her dance she had a curtain pulled so when he came back she could do a dance, and he walked in and we knew.” After paying a fee Mr. Pollacco was eventually released.

1936 Fiat Topolino (google)Each time Mussolini would make a speech his family (along with many other families) would drive in their Topolino, from their home in Milan, to the border of Switzerland listening to Mussolini’s speech on the radio and wondering if they would ever see home again. “If the speech was horrendous we would consider not going back, if the speech was not so bad we returned.” He can vividly remember packing his families luggage on top of the notoriously small Topolino and making the trips, until one day they could not go back.

In the 1940’s war obviously wasn’t reported the way it is today. Newscasts were made over the radio and were often inaccurate. Rumors ran rampant across Europe about what was safe and what wasn’t, and Ronie’s family experienced their fair share of what some call the fog of war. “You didn’t know what was true and what was not, people ran around like chickens with their heads cut off.”

The family left everything behind including their home, their friends, and even some family, and headed for Nice, France, which unbeknownst to them was soon to face its own set of World War II horrors. His family lived in France for about three years and during this time his sister Gabriella was born. Their time in France was tumultuous at best, “the French were not very helpful towards Jews,” he says. He doesn’t look back on this time all too fondly. In fact he seems almost proud to have forgotten some of the language.

Ronnie Pollacco As the conflict grew around Europe, his family felt the effects. He can recall awaking at 1am every morning to go down to the cellar and play cards with his family while bombs were being dropped around them. Then the family would go back upstairs, but upon his mother hearing a rumor that someone had thrown a hand grenade in Paris, the family decided to leave France for Spain. Spain of course was also dealing with its share of World War II turmoil, though their official stance was neutral, they supported the Axis powers materially. They were recovering from a brutal Civil War which proved to be incredibly costly. At the age of just six, Ronie, and his family were turned away.

In their hour of need they decided to head for America. They boarded a Polish ship from France bound for New York. When they finally arrived they, “weren’t even sure we could get off the boat,” says Ronie who was just six-years-old at the time. It was November of 1940 and America was on the brink of entering the fray in Europe. Fortunately for Ronie and his family, this meant there was work to be had (he speaks glowingly of F.D.R.). His father would eventually own his own store on Fifth Avenue called Ivel’s, which would eventually become the first store to offer fashion shows with African American models wearing wedding gowns and dresses.

reissued in 2002Once the war had finally ended and the family had established a permanent home in New York, they decided to return to Italy in search of his grandmother on his father’s side. They requested help from the U.S. government (the Pollacco’s wrote to President Eisenhower) they found their answer in an Italian book “IL Libro Della Memoria” his family members were listed in the long list of those killed in Auschwitz. The Pollacco family deeply saddened returned to Italy.  They erected a monument in Florence; a simple marble pole, broken at the top to commemorate the loss of a grandmother who died too soon.

Ronie would grow-up to travel the world, stopping from place to place to live in some of the most beautiful locations on Earth. He married and had three children. One of his children is deceased the remaing two children live in NY. He fondly flips through photographs of himself on his motorcycle, of family members, some of whom have passed. Each one bringing a new memory, a new story to tell. His experiences as a child, despite horrifying to those of us who have spent most of our lives living comfortably in the U.S., shaped the man he would grow to be. A world traveler. A motorcycle enthusiast. A father. A survivor.

Ronie Pollacco currently lives in Kings Park. He celebrated his 80th birthday on September 4, 2014.  

Editor’s note - Putting memories in their proper sequence is often difficult for the person reliving memories that are decades in the past. While Mr. Pollacco had some difficulties, Smithtown Matters believes this article fairly represents the events that Mr. Pollacco experienced. We wish Mr. Pollacco a very happy birthday with many more to follow.