Sunday, July 20, 2014

Firecracker damages memorial

From the Queens Chronicle:

For many in Howard Beach, the namesake of Charles Park is a mystery. But for those who know who Frank Charles was, his is a story every neighborhood resident should know.

That’s why several years ago, the American Legion Post #1404, based in Broad Channel but including a number of Howard Beach residents as members, sought to construct a memorial sign telling the story of Charles, the first resident of Howard Beach to die in action at war.

In May, five years, one hurricane and over $5,000 later, they unveiled a sign on the east side of the park facing Hawtree Creek where Charles lived, only to find last weekend that it had been damaged.

“It’s terrible,” said Ed Murray, past commander of American Legion Post #1404. “There’s no respect.”

A hole blew open in the Plexiglas panel protecting the sign and a large dent mars the back of the sign.

“I think it was a firecracker, an M-80 probably,” said Ray York, another past commander of the troop. “Some kids, probably on the Fourth of July. They must have taped it on the glass and lit it.”

Initially, some residents, including Dorothy McCloskey, president of Friends of Charles Park, thought it was a bullet, but no fragments were found, nor did it penetrate through the steel skin.

“If it was a bullet, it would have gone right through,” York said.

Murray pointed to red powder on the bottom of the sign inside the glass as a sign that a firecracker was the likely culprit.


Anonymous said...

Why do people aways say it must be kids or teenagers?

I live in Forest Hills - 67 Avenue and Austin Street has a small (City owned) sitting park that John Lindsay put there.

Our Problem?

We have 50 plus year old punks trying to take over the park. They decided to have a party the forth of July including fire works (even considered charging admission). Low and very large fill branched trees. High fireworks. Only by luck and the Fire Dept. the park did not go up in flames.

I also do not understand why they were not arrested. Do we only arrest teenagers for this type of behavior? Of course with all punks who get away with this only get emboldened - I now feel as if the Klu Klux has taken over the park. They have even put up about 8 signs with a made up address on the fences. Parks Dept has taken down half but I heard the senior punks planng to put them back up. Can not help but wonder why they need an address can you? Perhaps they are going to open a very small Walmart.

Anonymous said...

I agree with that. Just look at all the punks arrested lately for graffiti. In their 40s. Our culture these days promotes arrested development. People camping on a baseball field, playing with drones, etc. Time to get a life.

JQ said...

these are very pointed comments.

there is a culture festering these days of immaturity,inconsideration and uninhibited defiant stupidity that encompasses all ages.incidentally in the chief 18-49 demographic that advertising and marketing caters to,and apparently it includes douchebag behavior.

but I digress,charles park has been in terrible shape for decades.the ballfields are dusty,there are no grills for cookouts and its strewn with litter everywhere.And now you can't even put up a sign showing historic significance of the park,which I was curious to find out after years of going there.

one thing I noticed going to this and other parks this summer is that the parks department has shiny new vehicles this year,at the expense of the maintenance and sanitation of the grounds.

shit like this has to stop.bratton has to send a few patrol cars around there now.and the blaz has to show some concern for other parks and not just in "hot" areas like downtown brooklyn and LIC.

Anonymous said...

When parks are left to rot people see shit so they treat them like shit.

Now the city has more police per capita than any other place in the country except DC. Besides cruising around not giving tickets to reckless drivers what do they do exactly?

Per ton garbage collection costs are higher in NYC that anywhere else in the country. Minimum crew size is two. Elsewhere it's one, with trucks that lift the bins. Might not work in the whole city, but in a very large part of it. Once weekly garbage pickup is common and in the lower density parts of the city makes more sense. It doesn't have to lead to a single lost job. Plenty of trash filled parks for them to clean up on a regular basis.

Anonymous said...

I thought fireworks were illegal in New York. It was a war zone on July 4th. Not a police car to be found. I know we usually don't have any police presence in Maspeth, but you would think the cops could do a drive by on Independence Day.

Anonymous said...

Walmart? Do you mean Walgreens? Sounds more like a small drug store is planned.

Mike Francesa said...

We blame kids and teenagers because they have no voice in the media. We can keep busting them instead of requiring introspection within ourselves to become better humans beings.

Notice the PSAs don't go after talking on the phone and driving anymore because those who did it became the older crowd who is in power now. We're supposed to go after texting and driving now.

Basically, it's easier to pretend our shit don't stink.

Mike Francesa said...

I would also like to note for the record that the Bocce guys can be pretty aggressive about territory.

Anonymous said...


The Bocce guys have a right since it was built for their use. The Austin St Park was built as a sitting psrk only. Dogs are allowed on leash and but not
to be used as a dog run.

By the way the leader of the takeover pack is in the park (right next to a school) about sixteen hours a day (don't know when the hell he sleeps). Also is known as "The Stalker) by women in neighborhood). What happened to the loitering law?

Mike Francesa said...

What if another group wanted to play Bocce? Can the government be ordered to build Bocce courts for any Bocce playing group?

Anonymous said...


Are you saying they will not let any other group of players play?

Mike Francesa said...

Yes, I am. In fact I feel they are in violation of the first come, first served rule as stated on the website as well as building steel sheds into concrete at some locations to house their equipment.

Anonymous said...


Then everyone who has witnessed or experienced this should report it everyone from the Mayor, Parks Dept, your representative, Press, etc, etc.