Show Posts

This section allows you to view all posts made by this member. Note that you can only see posts made in areas you currently have access to.

Messages - nataliemcdonald

Pages: [1]
Hackensack Discussion / Re: Rainbow over Hackensack
« on: July 19, 2010, 12:48:31 AM »
You might also find a band or two (thousand) on the site, including Hackensack's two big rock stars - originally known as Joe Linquito and Leslie Weinstein - Joe Lynn Turner and Leslie West.

I saw that you had some great concert photos of Leslie West on your site, but do you have any pictures from when he was living in Hackensack as Leslie Weinstein?  I understand he still lives somewhere in New Jersey.  I met him once at a Crate Amps product demonstration he did at Robbie's Music with some members of Twisted Sister.  I would love to see some younger pictures of him; does anyone know if they exist in the HHS yearbook, for example?  Thanks!

Hackensack Discussion / Re: 24-story tower for Summit Avenue
« on: February 15, 2009, 12:09:06 AM »
I'm confused when I read this thread, so please allow me to ask a question because I've been away from home for so long.  Is this proposed tower at the same location as the two houses which were back-to-back, one on Prospect Avenue and one on Summit Avenue, and were owned by a Dr. Aurelio Buonanno back in the late 1970's?  Thanks!

But here's what bothered me about the article in The Record:

The Hackensack Fire Department responded at 5:55 a.m. to a “fully involved” fire, which caused the explosion of propane tanks inside the structure and two cars parked next to it, Deputy Chief Matt Wagner said.

Why were they storing propane tanks in that building???

I can't find the words for this because it's so much history.  I went to Holy Trinity, so I spent a *lot* of time in that immediate vicinity during the 30 years I lived in Hackensack.  I remember the Green Caboose Thrift Shop and especially the Charlmaree next door.  I see they call it the Straphanger Saloon now, sounds kinda yuppiefied to me compared to my recollections of the clientele at the Charlmaree.  I commuted to Manhattan for 8 years, a large part of it by train from the Anderson Street Station.  No pre-fab NJ Transit bus shelter could ever replace the beloved Green Caboose.  I'm truly heartbroken.

Hackensack Discussion / Re: Services for the homeless...
« on: January 04, 2009, 02:15:41 PM »
Wow, this thread is heavy.  I once spoke to Robin Reilly a few years ago looking for some answers about the death of a deceased classmate. 

In November 2006, I came home from Massachusetts to attend my 30th high school reunion (HHS Class of 1976), and the one person I was really looking forward to seeing again was a guy named George Pjeternikaj.  I kept looking around the banquet room at the Saddle Brook Holiday Inn wondering if he'd show up, and then finally someone said "Shame about George, wasn't it?"  It turned out that George had died about three weeks before the reunion in a room at a boarding house near the FAITH Foundation.  A classmate on the police force gave me the impression that George had been struggling with homelessness and drug abuse and had died of exposure.  I'd read numerous online articles in The Record about homeless people dying that way in Hackensack, so I instantly had a mental picture of George's body being found by the river and it devastated me.

I just couldn't accept that, though; I'd had a crush on George when I was four years old and didn't want to believe he'd died that way.  So I started making inquiries at the funeral home and Holy Trinity Church.  On the way back to Massachusetts, my daughter and I also visited his grave in the Albanian section of a rather upscale cemetery in Westchester County.  The evidence certainly didn't seem like the death of a homeless man at all, and I wasn't going to quit until I got some answers.  This led me to the FAITH Foundation.

The first person who answered the phone said he knew George well, but hinted that there had been some problems with substance abuse.  It took me a while, but I finally got to speak with Robin Reilly personally.  What a relief it was to get the truth.  She said that the reason George was so well known in the homeless community was because, although he did have some issues, he wasn't one of her clients at all.  George actually been the FAITH Foundation's most tireless *volunteer* and she missed him terribly.  She said that George kept a rented room near the FAITH Foundation and would often bring people back to it to shower and change into fresh clothing. 

"I want people to know that George was NOT a bum!" Robin exclaimed repeatedly, though I found this an unusual choice of words for someone dealing with the homeless.  I had to agree, because it broke my heart that people were spreading derogatory rumors about someone whom I always thought was very special.  I was really angry with myself for not keeping in touch over the years.  I actually hadn't seen George since 1986, when we celebrated the grand opening of another classmate's pizzeria on Anderson Street (I think a Rite-Aid there now by the old Acme Market).  So I whipped out my checkbook and promptly made a donation to the FAITH Foundation.  It was enough money so that Robin could give George Pjeternikaj the memorial repast he deserved within the homeless community.  I believe she said the event would have about 60 attendees.  I also arranged for a memorial mass to be said at Holy Trinity Church on the anniversary of his death.  I found it curious that I never got a response from a single member of the Pjeternikaj family for these gestures of condolence.  Perhaps George's real "family" had become Hackensack's homeless, the people he had been helping in the final days of his life.

Learning now of Robin Reilly's struggle makes me especially sad.  Maybe there are some other former classmates from Holy Trinity, Hackensack Middle and Hackensack High School who might consider helping her efforts with a similar donation in honor of George Pjeternikaj and his efforts to help the homeless.

Hackensack Discussion / Re: Ode to Hackensack (Seriously)
« on: January 04, 2009, 01:13:54 PM »
I agree.  I lived in Hackensack for 30 years on Prospect Avenue.  I went to Holy Trinity School, Hackensack Middle School, Hackensack High School and Fairleigh Dickinson University.  My little girl's father still lives in Hackensack, but I followed a different path that led me to Massachusetts and now Louisiana.  I am extremely proud to be from Hackensack and I'm often quite homesick.  I'm glad I found this board -- Happy New Year to all!!

Pages: [1]