Halloween Fundraisers: Don a Costume for a Cause

Local Parents Band Together to Protest New Dog Park Site

Main Street Block Party a Fall Hit

Octagon Field Renamed McManus, Tensions Remain

Islanders Enjoy Fall for the Arts Festival

RIOC and RIRA Meet on Back to Back Evenings Last Week

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April 9, 2019

Our friend and neighbor Ursula Beau-Seigneur passed away March 27, 2019.  A Memorial Service celebrating her life will take place on April 24 at the Cabrini Chapel at 504 Main Street at 6:00PM.

Ursula was active in the Roosevelt Island Historical Society for many years.  She was a writer and editor of our book, Images of America: Roosevelt Island in 2003 and the author of the text for its maps of the Island.

Quietly, Ursul...

November 30, 2018

Justin VanPoelvoorde, a senior librarian at the Roosevelt Island Library passed away Monday, November 26. Born on October 4, 1972, the 46-year old last worked at the library on Saturday. According to colleagues, he was not sick and knowledge of his death came as a shock to them. At this time, his cause of death is unknown.

VanPoelvoorde served the Roosevelt Island community for nearly 15 years. His co-workers at the library attest that he was a dedicat...

October 20, 2018

May 10, 1929 - October 8, 2018

Fay Vidra-Vass lived a full life as a wife, mother, grandmother, sister, daughter, sister-in-law and friend.

She leaves behind her husband Ron of 38 years, her daughters Nina and Michelle and her granddaughter Hannah, all of whom she loved very much.

Fay spent the second half of her life here on Roosevelt Island; she and Ron moved here after her daughter Michelle had a tragic car accident 44 years ago and was transfer...

August 28, 2018

Kofi Annan, the first Black African United Nations Secretary General and a 2001 Nobel Peace Prize winner, passed away at 80 years old, the morning of August 18 while hospitalized for a brief illness in Bern, Switzerland.The Ghanaian born world leader was one of ours; he lived in Island House from 1978 until becoming Secretary General in 1997. Roosevelt Island residents offer a unique personal glimpse into the life of an iconic figure described as the...

March 29, 2018

Richard “Dick” J. Lutz, editor and publisher of The Main Street WIRE from 1996 to 2016, died Sunday of a heart attack in Sarasota, Florida, while visiting college friend Irwin Starr. He was 79 years old. 

Lutz was born on November 19, 1938, in Dunkirk, New York. Showing an early talent for writing and public speaking, he was encouraged by his father to become a proficient typist, learning to pound out a stunning 90 words per minute and building on a co...

January 5, 2018

February 14, 1920 – December 31, 2017

Ena Valencia Shinnery was born on February 14, 1920, to the late Frances Elizabeth Stoutt-Shinnery

and Alfred Shinnery in St. Thomas, United States Virgin Islands. Her siblings all predeceased her.

Ena departed this life as quietly as she lived it, on December 31, 2017, at her residence on Roosevelt Island, where she’d lived for the past 26 years.

In 1940, Ena completed her high school education in St. Thomas, and lat...

December 3, 2017

October 20, 1947- November 24, 2017

It is with a heavy heart that we must say goodbye to another Island angel. Mercedes (Cookie) Lugo has been a staple in our community since 1976. Moving here from the Bronx with her two boys, Joey and Eric, was a huge step for her, but she was open to this brand-new adventure. She quickly made friends and embraced her new Island life. Volunteering for the cub scouts, Special Olympics, and various events came naturally...

November 13, 2017

On November 15, in an open casket draped with the American flag, Island activist and resident Jim Bates was laid to rest before more than 120 people in a Hope Church Roosevelt Island service, a church that he helped found. With his passing, Bates leaves behind wife Belen, a seamstress, as well as a strong legacy of advocacy and faith. 

A veteran of the United States Coast Guard, Bates passed away on Veteran’s Day after losing his battle with pancreatic...

Nov 22, 1950 - Sept 14, 2017

The Roosevelt Island community lost a longtime friend and neighbor, Judith Arond Dinerstein, on September 14, 2017. Judi has been a beautiful “fixture” on Roosevelt Island since 1976. She participated in many Island and off-Island groups and activities. Before there was Facebook, there was Judi, the original social networker who brought people together. She was well known by residents as an effervescent, friendly neighbor w...

October 2, 2017

Beryl Eugene Kryenhoff Seaforth passed away on September 5, 2017, at Mount Sinai Hospital, New York. 

In the words of a dear friend:

“Beryl involved herself in Roosevelt Island. She was active in the Roosevelt Island Senior Association and cared for her fellow seniors.  For several years, she was a regular among the Main Street WIRE’s stuffers, joining others in preparing the Island newspaper for distribution.”

Where did this all begin?

Ninety-seven years...

July 28, 2017

George Rivera died June 21 at age 73. He was interred on June 28 without much fanfare.

George lived a quiet life of humility and art, always a ready hand to aid and comfort. He was a Vietnam veteran, an accomplished craftsman of stained glass windows, and he was a friend to me and many on Roosevelt Island.

We met in the 1980s, poring over sales books at the Roosevelt Island Library and Cabrini Thrift store. We got to talking – of books, politics, movies...

July 28, 2017

Longtime Island resident Marilyn Sherman, 92, passed away on June 6. 

She was born in 1925 to the late Lee and Benjamin Lubit in Brooklyn, New York, and married the late Lee Sherman in 1947. 

Marilyn moved to Roosevelt Island in 1977 and was an avid knitter. One would often find her selling beautiful handmade baby sweaters and blankets at the local flea markets; many families benefitted from her special treasures. 

Marilyn was a vocal participant in Seni...

June 24, 2017

Longtime Island resident, Ann Grace O’Grady passed away Tuesday, June 20. She is survived by her son Joshua and daughter Claire, as well as twin granddaughters. Ann was diagnosed with Parkinson’s Disease. 

A wake will be held Friday, June 23, from 3:00-6:00 p.m. at Lawton-Turso Funeral Home in Hoboken, NJ. Burial Mass will be held the next day, Saturday, June 24, at 9:00 a.m. at St. Francis Church, 300 Jefferson St., Hoboken, NJ. 

May 9, 2017

Virginia Granato, longtime resident of Roosevelt Island, passed away Sunday, April 30, after a long battle with cancer. 

Virginia was born in New York City in 1946. She contracted polio at the age of nine, after which she began using a motorized wheelchair. She started using a portable respirator in her late twenties. 

Virginia moved to Roosevelt Island in December of 1976, shortly after which she co-founded the Roosevelt Island Disabled Association (RI...

April 30, 2017

February 2, 1941 - April 13, 2017

Bakul Mitra, resident of 425 Main Street since 2007, died on April 13, after a battle with kidney cancer. She was born on February 2, 1941.  

Bakul Mamima grew up in the small leafy suburb called Barasat right on the commuter rail line to the big city of Kolkata, India. The little house that she shared with her seven sisters, one brother, and their parents was surrounded by 12 large mango trees, eight guava trees, one e...

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