06 Ron Emmerich
09 Judith Kreischer
11 Evelyn Aloisio-Gordon
15 Joan Cary-Pastman
18 Honey Murway-Cottrell
20 Phil Margolin
26 Toni Salometo
27 Marlene Ginsberg
29 Barbara O''Connel-Lawrence
05 Bob & Billie Lent
19 Barbara Bockmann & Toni Ippolito
Have something to share with the Class? Drop a line.
We would all like to hear from you! Here's what we "hear"
latest posting first.
Please send me your birthday or anniversary (or any other classmate birthday/anniversary) and we will post it on the appropriate month.
2019 Updates Page may be viewed "HERE"
There are serious issues going on with the Coronavirus so I hope everyone is being smart and staying safe. Now for some good news. With all the responses from 1953-1983 we will take the next step toward Panther Party 2021. The weekend will consist of Thurs Night at the Levittown Ale House (optional). Fri night Party at the Uniondale Marriott and Sat the BBQ at Eisenhower Park. Sunday is open to ideas. We will need around 250 Panthers to make it work for all. The date right now is June 25th, 2021. I will be posting all updates and info on our Facebook page, Panther Party 2021. It is a closed group so ask to join and I will approve. I know many have already responded but now we need a more accurate commitment. Let us know your year and the name of a guest if there is one. If we get the numbers we need by mid April we will proceed and have the financial details. Please respond ASAP so we can get the ball rolling.
we all seem to have time on our hands right now so it gave me an opportunity to check out our website in its entirety. It looks great and I’m sure takes quite a bit of time to keep up with it. Thanks to all involved in making it so interesting.
(the photos mentioned are locted on the Family 2020 page)
The second photo is of two of our five granddaughters, Danielle and Kerry, who live in Kentucky. Dannie has graduated college and just purchased a home in Lexington. Kerry is graduating high school this spring and starting college in the fall.
The last photo is of our grandson Sean with my husband Chuck on an annual charter boat fishing trip.. Sean is an ironworker in NY like his dad, and lives in Miller Place, Long Island.
See the link at the end of this post to access the Newsday Article and Video
Who says you can't go home again?
Long Island native and bestselling mystery writer Phillip Margolin returned to his hometown of Levittown earlier this month to be inducted into the Levittown High Hall of Fame. The very same week, he celebrated publishing his 23rd novel A Reasonable Doubt (St. Martin’s Press, $27.99).
Margolin, a former attorney, spoke by phone from Portland, Oregon about Perry Mason, the Levittown pool and the power of chess.
When you were growing up in Levittown in the 1950s, did you ever think you might get inducted into the Levittown High Hall of Fame?
I was shocked when I got the letter! I was not a stellar student. In fact, I was a failure growing up. I was a lousy student, didn’t get into any college I applied to the first time, or law school. Things finally started going uphill after I went to the Peace Corps. I had an exciting career as a criminal defense lawyer for 25 years, and then I became a bestselling writer. I just sent my 24th book to my publisher.
What is your fondest memory of growing up in Levittown?
Levittown was great for kids. There were big families and someone was always playing football or baseball or heading to the pool, which was very close to my house. We rode bikes all over, going to the deli and grabbing hero sandwiches. We’d play tennis on the town courts and the loser would have to buy Twinkies and Cokes. I even had a paper route, and I think it was for Newsday.
How did you transform from a lousy student into a Hall of Famer?
Chess really turned me around. I flunked math in eighth grade — this was the best thing to ever happen to me. The summer school math teacher was a chess player and we started playing after class. I was a poor student because I had a short attention span. If I didn’t get a problem in two seconds, I’d lose interest. But in chess you have to sit for long periods of time and analyze. It trained me to become unemotional and objective about schoolwork, to not get upset if I couldn’t figure out a math problem. I had a low opinion of my IQ and didn’t think I was smart, but I started thinking that if I could beat my math teacher at chess, maybe I’m not so stupid after all. In ninth grade I applied myself and went from a C average to 90s and in another two years I was taking all honors classes.
Did you always want to be a writer?
I never even thought of being a writer growing up. Since I was 12 years old, I only wanted to be like Perry Mason and do murder cases. I read all his books as a kid and then moved on to Ellery Queen. When I was in Liberia, West Africa with the Peace Corps, there was no rule of law; they had secret police, torture, and you had no right to an attorney. After two years in Africa, I came back and decided to go to law school. I wrote my first book the summer between law school and my first job.
This is your fourth book following young criminal defense attorney Robin Lockwood. But this is your first that focuses on magic.
I just love magic. When I moved to Oregon in 1970 there was a show late at night where they had magic. I’d never seen big time magic, where they made people disappear and things like that, and I became obsessed. I wondered how they did it. Over the years, I’ve seen the big magicians in person, but I still don’t know how they do it, and I still love it! I got this idea for a magician who gets murdered in the middle of performing on stage in front of 3,000 people. That was the fun part for me, working out the murder.
Did you ever try your hand at magic?
No, I have really poor eye-hand coordination. I play tons of sports, but I’m not good at any of them. You have to really manipulate cards and I can barely tie my shoes.
You dedicated this book to former executive director of Chess for Success. Do you still play chess?
Chess is, pound-for-pound, the best educational tool, period. I helped form the nonprofit Chess for Success, which is now in more than 100 schools and 20 school districts. It is an educational program that uses chess to trick kids into learning. We work with 4,000 kids a year and I know what you are thinking: they are probably all nerds with pocket protectors. Not true! I challenge you to come up with a group as diverse as ours. We teach boys and girls, gifted and talented, kids with physical disabilities, learning disabilities, non-English speaking kids, and they all work together on an even playing field. All these kids get to participate.
Has chess helped you become a better mystery writer?
Unemotionally and objectively analyzing problems — that’s what chess teaches you. Now I am able to take a look at what I am writing and say: I wrote this, and this is really not very good, and I’ve got to keep working. If an editor says, “I don’t like this,” I’m not upset that he’s bad-mouthing my brilliant prose. Instead, if what he is saying makes sense, I figure out how to correct the problem. It’s all chess!
By Kelly McMastersSpecial to Newsday (link below to see the interview)
Everyone is happy and healthy after a fabulous trip to Vietnam and Cambodia and Levittown. My book tour for A Reasonable Doubt started on March 9 with small crowds in Arizona and Texas. Then all but one event in Seattle and Portland cancelled. I still have one signing and two radio shows. The trip to Levittown was great. We drove right from the airport to Borelli’s which still has the best pizza in the universe. I showed my wife my house and Memorial and the Slate Lane pool. I really enjoyed the induction dinner. Hope you are staying safe in Tampa.
Message posted By Richard Carballo on Facebook
We have about 100 Panthers who have responded with a yes to the idea of another Panther party. Of all the ideas we received, the one that made the most sense is to invite all Panthers from 1953-1983 for one big Panther Party in June of 2021. Many of us have siblings and some might even have children or grandchildren who attended LMHS. In 2019 the 60's and 70's had a reunion and many are ready for an encore. This will be followed up on Sat with a monster bash at a famous Steve Telano BBQ. If this doesn't get us a Party then there will no plan 'C". There will no e-mails sent. I will post on multiple FB sites but we can only reach those on FB. If you have contact with Panthers from 53-83, let them know what we are trying to do. Please respond ASAP on FB or send an IM to me or JoAnn Bongiovanni. For those who don't know us, you can respond to Steve Telano by IM or firstname.lastname@example.org. LET'S GO BIG PANTHERS!!!!
We are wishing all our classmates the very best of health in the upcoming months. Remember that you have a large family of classmates out there. These are difficult times. Keep us posted on how things are going with you.
Marcy & Honey 3/18/2020
This message was posted on Face Book by Richard Carballo
On Feb 28, 2020, at 3:54 PM, Steven Weissman <email@example.com> wrote:
MARCY, Hope you are doing well. Don't know if I mentioned that after 53 years of sales I retired in May. Staying busy as President of my HOA and volunteering 2 days a week at our local hospital in the admitting office and as a courtesy cart driver (taking out patients to and from their cars. Leaving next week for Colorado for a few weeks to our home in Lakewood.
Also, just to mention that a classmate of my brother's (past away 4 1/2 years ago) a graduate of class of '58 and I have been friends since 1955 when our family's moved to North Wantaugh. We see each other 3-4 times a year when he visits south Florida from Columbus, Ohio. How can I know someone for 65 years??
I don't want to be the boy who cried wolf, but it is with regret that I must say if we don't have the numbers by Friday the 13th of March 2020, we will cancel the idea of Panther Party 2021. As of today we have 82 yes, 33 maybe and around 45 no. Of the 45 no, approx 25 attended last year. We were hoping for a large amount of returnees, but doesn't look like it. With these numbers, it doesn't look good. This response is 150 out of 2500+ who attended LMHS thru the 60's. We need over 200 Panthers to make this party work. We hope to hear from those who have not responded. Please do so by responding on one of our sites or by e-mail to JoAnn (firstname.lastname@example.org)
This message was posted on Face Book by Richard Carballo
Good morning Panthers of the 60's.
For the past 10 days we have been asking for a semi head count so we can determine if we should proceed. We have 416 members in our group and I have to wonder if everyone sees all the posts. I have read where only 25 people see all the posts. Right now we have 83 yes, 26 maybe and 45 no. That totals 154 out of 416 in the group. That means 262 have not given a yes or no. There are also many who are not on FB and are hard to reach. We had 275 in 2019 and we haven't even heard from all of them. Of the 83 yes, we don't know if some of these did not list a spouse or guest. Of the 275 last year, it was only around 160 Panthers and the rest were +1. Help us by responding if your name is not on the roll call list. No response is hurting our efforts. If we can't get the necessary numbers soon, we will have to cancel the idea of a Panther Party in 2021.
Thank you, Honey, for your kind words and appreciation. Please share our work with others including those who may remember me.
You may use the description and picture of me at this link:
You (and I am sure others) have done a lot of work on the website to be as welcoming and comprehensive as it is. Congratulations and thank you.
PS. My last name is spelled wrong in the yearbook entry, the correct spelling is Ginsberg. Thanks for making the correction.
This message was in response to the e-mail regarding a tentative 2021 Classes of the 60's reunion
Feb 14, 2020, 4:03 AM -0500, Phillip Margolin <email@example.com>, wrote:
I travel so much and this is so far off that I have no idea if I can make it. But please thank the person who nominated me for the Levittown High School Hall of Fame. I am going to the ceremony on March 12. Flying in from Dallas Texas in the middle of my book tour. Then back to Seattle. But I am excited to come back.
Hi Marcy and Honey,
I’ve been away and am home in Arizona playing catch up. I went to the LMHS61 website to get the address for you, Honey, to send a check - and then saw your letter, Marcy, about not needing any checks this year. Wow….you two are amazing in what you have done with the website and the finances to keep it running. My brother mentioned that he was told by one of his classmates that you have done an incredible job with finding classmates and keeping a really great website going. I think his class is jealous !
I am planning to move to Jacksonville, FL sometime this year, but so far I am not making good progress with that. The reason is I’ve been away helping my daughter-in-law who was diagnosed with cancer right before Christmas. And since her husband, my son, is in a new job, needless to say they’ve needed some morale support and help with the driving. The good news is their new home is twenty minutes from the amazing Mayo Clinic in Jacksonville, and my daughter-in-law is getting amazing care. The bad news is it means lots of trips to the hospital as she will have 20 weeks of chemo before surgery. Right now, my son is handling the next two sessions and then I will go back when it switches from every two weeks to every week for 12 weeks. In the meantime, I am packing boxes and trying to be ready to make the move once I get this house on the market.
Best wishes to you both and thanks again for the wonderful website.
From Louise DeNardo Cassano:
I am humbled and honored to have been chosen to be a member of the Levittown School District Hall of Fame. Thank you to Dr. Tonie McDonald and to all others who had anything to do with this. You've made 2020 a year I'll remember!
To see previous year updates click HERE