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thanksgiving

Happy Thanksgiving!

Russo_web

More apartments eyed for Bergen Ave.

By Ron Leir  Observer Correspondent  KEARNY –  Carlstadt builder Ed Russo is looking to expand a residential development project already in progress in a Kearny redevelopment area at Bergen and Schuyler Aves. Russo told The Observer last month he has a contract to purchase an additional 2.25 acres of […]

NA Budget_web

Local taxes up again in borough

By Ron Leir  Observer Correspondent  NORTH ARLINGTON –  Borough residents should be getting their property tax bills by the first week of December, CFO Steve Sanzari said last Thursday, after the Borough Council finally adopted the 2014 municipal budget. Passage of the budget, introduced back in July, has […]

Vets_web

Vets’ photos wanted for ‘Wall of Honor’

By Karen Zautyk  Observer Correspondent  NUTLEY –  This township, which has been in the forefront when it comes to offering support and assistance and recognition to veterans, has launched yet another project to pay tribute to the men and women who have served our nation. This time, going […]

monument_web

Carved in stone

    Photo by Karen Zautyk On Veterans Day, the Township of Kearny added this new memorial to Monument Park on Kearny Ave. It will commemorate local members of the armed forces who make the supreme sacrifice in the War on Terrorism. […]

 
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From the lam to the slammer

Enfamil_web

KEARNY –

The Enfamil cans can sleep soundly now on their shelves at Walmart, secure in the knowledge they are no longer in danger of being abducted by a serial shoplifter.

Suspect Danny Morales, 36, of Newark — who has been making regular appearances in the Kearny police blotter — was apprehended last Wednesday, Oct. 29, by Officer Daniel Esteves, who spotted him at 10 p.m. near the Quick Chek at Kearny and Bergen Aves.

Morales had been on the lam since Oct. 20, when he fled Walmart after attempting to (yet again) steal several cans of the baby formula from the store, police said. In that incident however, he reportedly assaulted a security guard, which elevated a simple shoplifting charge to robbery. A $50,000 warrant had been issued for his arrest. Police said he also had a $500 warrant out of Bloomfield.

Prior to the Oct. 20 incident, Morales had been taken into custody three times — on Oct. 2, 14 and 17 — for allegedly stealing Enfamil from Walmart. The product is said to be popular among pilferers because it can be readily fenced for cash.

Last week, Morales was remanded to the Hudson County Jail in lieu of $50,600 bail, with no 10% option. Considering the fact that, when nabbed by Esteves, the suspect had been panhandling for change outside Quick Chek, one can assume he is still languishing in a cell.

– Karen Zautyk 

Around Town

Belleville 

The fifth annual Essex County Veteran’s Day ceremony includes a tribute to the late Joseph “Joe” Fornarotto, who served as commander of Disabled American Veterans Belleville/Nutley Chapter 22. The program begins at 11 a.m. on Wednesday, Nov. 5, at Essex County Veterans Memorial Park, on W. Market St., Newark. The ceremony will be held rain or shine.

Belleville Public Library and Information Center, 221 Washington Ave., offers the following children’s programs:

* Saturday craft program takes place Nov. 8 at 3 p.m.

* Pajama Story Time program continues Tuesday, Nov. 18, at 6 p.m.

Both are open to all ages and no registration is required.

For more information, call the library at 973-450-3434 or visit www.bellepl.org or belleplcr.blogspot.com 

The Woman’s Club of Belleville meets the second Monday of each month at 7 p.m. at its clubhouse, 51 Rossmore Place. Prospective members are welcome. For more information, contact Terry Landon at 973-751-6529.

Bloomfield 

Bloomfield Public Library, 90 Broad St., announces the following programs:

  • A free Origami class, open to ages 13 and up, is slated for Nov. 19 at 3 p.m. All materials will be supplied. Registration is required. Visit http://www. bplnj.org/programs/.
  • Cartooning class, open to ages 10 and up, takes place Wednesday, Nov. 12, from 4 to 6 p.m.
  • The Mid-day Movies program continues its 12:15 p.m. screenings on Mondays and Thursdays. Here’s the schedule: Thursdays: Nov. 6 – “Awakenings,” Nov. 13 – “Grand Piano,” Nov. 20 – “The Other Woman,” and Nov. 27 – No movie (Thanksgiving Day); Mondays: Nov. 10 – “The Best Years of Our Lives,” Nov. 17 – “The Grand Budapest Hotel” and Nov. 24 – “The House of Yes.”
  • Craft project, open to ages 5 and up, is set for Nov. 6 at 2 p.m. • The library offers the following story times: Toddler Time, open to ages 19 to 36 months, on Tuesdays and Fridays at 11 a.m.; Pre-K Story and Craft, open to ages 3 to 5, on Wednesdays at 11 a.m.; and Baby and Me, for up to 18 months, on Thursdays at 11 a.m.

Harrison

Harrison American Legion Post 282, 8 Patterson St., hosts the following events:

  • Harrison Police Department vs. Harrison Fire Department chili cook off begins at 6 p.m. on Nov. 8, at the post hall. Representatives from both departments will bring their best chili to be judged by a few locals. All are welcome.
  • The post invites the community to a Veteran’s Day observance on Tuesday, Nov. 11, at 11 a.m., at the veteran’s monument in Roosevelt Park, 318 Harrison Ave.

Kearny

Better Homes and Gardens Real Estate/Coccia Realty continues a coat drive for the area’s less fortunate, through Nov. 15, at its Kearny, Lyndhurst and Rutherford offices. Drop off gently used or new coats between 9 a.m. and 6 p.m. weekdays or from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. weekends at any of these participating offices: 636 Kearny Ave., Kearny; 273 Ridge Road, Lyndhurst; or 11 Park Ave., Rutherford. For more information, call Randy Wine at 201-939-0001.

Presbyterian Boys-Girls Club, 663 Kearny Ave., holds its annual fall dance on Friday, Nov. 7, from 7 to 10 p.m. Prizes will be given to the best dancers. Guests are restricted to teenagers.

Kearny Public Library, 318 Kearny Ave., hosts the following free programs:

  • The Movie Premiere series continues with a special screening of Disney’s “Maleficent” (PG) featuring Angelina Jolie on Friday, Nov. 7, at 4 p.m.
  • Saturday Family Film Matinees continue on Saturday, Nov. 8, at 11 a.m., with a screening of “Planes: Fire and Rescue” (PG).
  • An Adult Painting Party, open to ages 14 and up, is set for Saturday, Nov. 8, from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. A $5 registration fee helps cover the cost of paints and canvases. Class size is limited. To reserve a spot, call the library at 201-998-2666.

For more information on any library programs, call 201-998- 2666 or visit www.kearnylibrary.org.

Trinity Church, 575 Kearny Ave., will hold its monthly flea market on Nov. 8, from 8 a.m. to 3 p.m. Refreshments are available. Vendors are invited. Tables are one for $15 or two for $25. Call the church at 201-991- 5894 to schedule your table or call Annamarie at 201-998-2368. after 5:30 p.m. Walk-in vendors are welcome.

First Presbyterian Church, 663 Kearny Ave., hosts a Geek Flea Market on Saturday, Nov. 15, from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Over 40 vendors will be selling comics, collectibles, art and more for all ages. Admission is free.

Lyndhurst 

Lyndhurst Health Department, 601 Riverside Ave., Suite 1, holds its seasonal flu shot clinic on Monday, Nov. 10, from 5 to 7 p.m. Free shots are available to township residents age 18 and older. Anyone on Medicare must bring their card. Wear clothes with loose-fitting sleeves to make it easier to receive the shot. No appointments are needed for the flu clinic. For more information, call the Lyndhurst Health Department at 201-804-2500.

Lyndhurst Public Library, 353 Valley Brook Ave., hosts the following events:

  • Book Club discusses “The Body in the Library” by Agatha Christie Wednesday, Nov. 12, at 6:30 p.m. Call the library to reserve a copy of the book. Space is limited.
  • LetHistoryLive.net presents “The Real History of Thanksgiving” on Wednesday, Nov. 12, at 6:15 p.m. Space is limited. To register, call the library or email romeo@lyndhurst.bccls.org.
  • Walk-in Story Times, open to grades pre-K to 2, take place every Monday, Wednesday and Thursday at 6:30 p.m. No registration is required. • Cornucopia Mobile Craft, open to grades 1 to 4, is offered on Wednesday, Nov. 12, at 3:30 to 4:15 p.m.
  • Turkey Headband Craft, open to grades pre-k to 3, is set for Monday, Nov. 17, from 3:30 to 4:15 p.m. Registration is required for all of these events, unless otherwise noted. To register, call the library at 201-804-2478.

New Jersey Meadowlands Commission announces the following programs:

  • Art of the Heavens, a program open to all ages on how humans created art as inspiration from the cosmos, will be held on Thursday, Nov. 6, from 2 to 3 p.m., at the Meadowlands Environment Center, 1 DeKorte Park Plaza. Cost is $5; $4 for MEC members. Registration is recommended and appreciated. To register, go to http://mec. rst2.edu/environment.
  • Birds of Prey, a program featuring live raptors, is open to all ages on Sunday, Nov. 9, 2 to 3 p.m., at the Meadowlands Environment Center. Learn about their behavior, physiology and natural history. Admission is $5; $4 for MEC members. Registration is recommended and appreciated. To register, go to http://mec.rst2.edu/environment.

For more information on NJMC programs, call 201-460- 8300

North Arlington 

The Angry Coffee Bean, 89 Ridge Road, hosts its creative writing group’s first open mic on Monday, Nov. 10, from 6:30 to 8 p.m. All are welcome.

North Arlington Public Library, 210 Ridge Road, offers the following programs, for which registration is not required, unless otherwise noted:

  • Story Time, open to ages 4 to 7, takes place Thursday, Nov. 6, at 11 a.m.
  • YA (Young Adult) Movie Days, open to grades 6 and up, continues on Friday, Nov. 7, at 3 p.m.
  • Sing-along Story Time, open to ages 2 to 5, offering stories, music and simple crafts, will be held on Thursday, Nov. 13, at 11:45 a.m.
  • A class on making origami, open to grades 4 to 7, is slated for Friday, Nov. 14, at 3:30 p.m.
  • A screening of the film “The Book Thief” (PG-13), is open to all ages on Friday, Nov. 14, at 11 a.m.
  • Computer Coding Club, open to ages 8 to 13, meets Saturday, Nov. 15, from 1 to 2 p.m. (ages 8 to 10) and 2 to 3 pm. (ages 11 to 13.) Learn to code, develop websites, apps, programs, games and explore technology Registration is required. To register, visit http://northarlington. bccls.org/children.html. The library will be closed to the public at 1 p.m. on this date, as usual, and open only for this special program.
  • Friends of the Library meet on Friday, Nov.14 at 10 a.m. All are welcome to join.
  • Knitting Group meets on Thursdays, Nov. 13 and Dec. 11, from 7 to 8:30 p.m. both dates. If anyone is interested in moderating this group or offering instruction, call the library at 201-955-5640 and ask for Kristin Nelson.
  • Computer Basics class takes place Mondays in November from 6 to 7 p.m. Call 201-955- 5640 to register for this series of courses; space is limited.

North Arlington Woman’s Club sponsors a trip on Dec. 6 to the Sands Casino, Bethlehem, Pa. The bus leaves from Borough Hall at 9 a.m. Cost is $30 with $20 slot return and $5 food voucher. For information, call 201-889-2553.

Nutley 

Due to the number of people attending the 2014 Nutley Distinguished Service Medal for Military Veterans Awards Ceremony, the venue has been changed from the Kingsland Manor to the Nutley AMVETS, located at 184 Park Ave.

The event is Sunday, Nov. 9, from 2 to 4 p.m. For information, call Dan Jacoby at 973- 284-4900, ext. 2428.

Nutley Public Library, 93 Booth Drive, announces the following programs.

Registration is not required unless otherwise noted. To register, call 973-667-0405:

  • Manga/Anime Teen Club, open to grades 7 to 12, meets Friday, Nov. 14, at 3 p.m.
  • An Evening at the Library, celebrating the library’s centennial, kicks off at 7 p.m. Saturday, Nov. 15. Enjoy champagne, gourmet foods, and entertainment. Tickets are $100 per person. Contact the library at 973-667- 0405 for more information.
  • Babygarten, open to ages 23 months and under, offers books, nursery rhymes and playtime, on Tuesday, Nov. 18, at 9:30 a.m. and 10:45 a.m. Registration is required. Participants must be Nutley residents.

Good news for grid locals

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Nutley makes NJSIAA state playoffs; Harrison earns first victory

By Jim Hague 

Observer Sports Writer 

There is good news to report this week for two local high school football teams.

First, Nutley defeated Weequahic, 28-18, to improve to 6-2 on the season. It was the Maroon Raiders’ third straight victory.

More importantly, the Maroon Raiders have qualified for the NJSIAA North Jersey Section 1, Group IV state playoffs, the first state playoff appearance since 2011.

“It is very rewarding,” Nutley head coach Tom Basile said. “The kids were excited. The locker room was electric. It was like a weight was lifted off their shoulders.”

Basile said that he always believed that the Maroon Raiders were going to have a successful season.

“I absolutely felt that this team was going to be special,” Basile said. “The expectations were pretty high. This is a group that has been together for three years. The last three weeks, we were in do-or-die situations and we won all three. Having three and four-year players really is paying off. We tried to build this program for the last three years.”

Harrison is another local team that enjoyed success over the weekend, but it wasn’t in the same proportion as Nutley. The Blue Tide won for the first time in 2014, defeating Hawthorne, 27-26, giving Harrison its first win of the season.

“When you’re having a season like we’re having, a lot of kids would have thrown in the towel,” said Harrison head coach Matt Gallo, whose team improved to 1-7. “The commitment of the kids has been consistent. They have been working so hard for that first win and they finally got it.”

The Blue Tide actually trailed Hawthorne, 20-0, in the first half and later trailed 26-14 before making the dramatic comeback.

Quarterback Mike O’Donnell was the Harrison standout, rushing for 155 yards on 10 carries and scoring both fourth quarter touchdowns that gave the Blue Tide the win. Sophomore O’Donnell also completed three passes, including a 55-yard touchdown to Jason Sheppard, for 80 yards.

“Trailing 20-0 and being able to come back is a testament to the character of this team,” Gallo said. “They were not giving up on the season. They fought hard in the fourth quarter, regardless of what the score was.”

Gallo was impressed with the way O’Donnell played down the stetch.

“He just took over in the fourth quarter,” Gallo said. “He was the guy who was not going to lose that game. He did everything he could to make sure we were not going to lose. He was throwing and running like he’s an upperclassman. We know we have a very young team, but Mike has been phenomenal. The mission has been to improve every year. We have a bunch of young players who are going to get better.”

Jerry Rodriguez also had a big fumble recovery for the Blue Tide. He’s another sophomore.

“After a while, as the season goes by and you’re playing without a win, it’s easy to get discouraged,” Gallo said. “But nothing has been compromised. Our practice structure has been the same way every week. They’ve all stayed the course.”

The Maroon Raiders once again got a huge performance from junior running back Craig Merkle, who rushed for 211 yards and three touchdowns. He also eclipsed the 1,000-yard mark for the season with his performance.

Pete Russo had a big game, collecting two huge receptions as well his fifth interception on defense.

Rob Melillo was solid at quarterback, completing five passes for 124 yards and a touchdown.

“Offensively, when people focus on Craig, it opens up things for everyone else,” Basile said. “Craig makes everyone else around him better. Rob was our JV (junior varsity) quarterback the last two years and he works so hard at it. He’s gone to the (Peyton and Eli) Manning camp to get better. He knows the offense and knows it well.”

Frank Malanga made 19 tackles on defense, including an interception. Andrew Aiello also had an interception.

“Russo has hands of gold and is always making big catches,” Basile said. “Malanga is always around the football every play”

Needless to say, it was a solid team effort.

The win also put Nutley in position this weekend to play for a Super Essex Conference- Liberty Division championship against Caldwell.

“We talked to the kids about what they had to play for,” Basile said. “We asked them to imagine what it would be like to play Caldwell in a game that didn’t matter and then play in a consolation game instead of the state playoffs. They definitely responded. They all chose to play playoff football. There’s nothing like that atmosphere of a state playoff game.”

So both local teams head to their respective practices this week with something to play for.

“It’s very exciting,” Basile said. “We’re now preparing for the big games ahead.”

After facing Caldwell for the SEC-Liberty crown, the Maroon Raiders appear headed to face No. 3 seed Paramus in the first round of the state playoffs in two weeks.

“We’ve waited 10 weeks for the chance to play these big games,” Basile said. “Now, it’s here. We were talking about it. Now it’s here in front of us.”

Let the big games begin.

Belleville boys’ soccer team keeps winning ways

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By Jim Hague

Observer Sports Writer

In August, the Belleville boys’ soccer team was headed toward great things in 2014. The school just hired one of its all-time greats in Jim Damiano to run the program, after longtime coach Len Marino had stepped down due to medical reasons.

The Buccaneers were destined for greatness.

Meanwhile, Carlos Goncalves was the program’s junior varsity coach for the prior four years. In August, Goncalves was on vacation, visiting his family in Portugal, when the Belleville Board of Education made more than 50 teacher cuts, one of whom was Damiano.

Without Damiano, the Buccaneers became a program without a coach.

“I got the phone call that Jimmy was no longer going to be the coach,” Goncalves said. “The AD (athletic director Tom D’Elia) called me and asked me if I would take over. I didn’t want to be the head coach, but I decided to do it for the kids. I’m not sure about next year, but I agreed to do it this year.”

The program also brought back a familiar face to be the assistant – namely Marino.

“It helped tremendously,” Goncalves said. “Having Lenny beside me was great. He’s a great individual and a great coach. The kids all know him and love him. Lenny was determined. He said, ‘If you take over, I’ll help you.’ Lenny is my mentor. His help is always needed.”

So Goncalves inherited the program and had to try to stem the tide, keep the players on the right track that was established before him.

“I was doing it for the kids,” Goncalves said. “Regardless of their talent, I would take over for the kids. I put their ability and their play aside. I did it for them.”

Goncalves knew that there was a lot of talent returning on the 2014 roster.

“You always have high expectations when you have a team like this,” Goncalves said. “These kids have been together for like six years. The core of the team has been playing together forever. When they play together as a team for that long, there’s no other choice but to have high expectations.”

The Buccaneers have responded well for the new coach and the old coach, winning 14 times this season and advancing all the way to the Essex County Tournament semifinals for the first time before falling to perennial power Livingston.

 

Photo by Jim Hague Belleville senior defender Marlon Rodriguez (top) is recognized as one of the top defenders in Essex County and the Super Essex Conference while Belleville senior midfielder Max Correa (above) has been outstanding with the ball this season, collecting 23 assists, among the best in the state.

Photo by Jim Hague
Belleville senior defender Marlon Rodriguez (photo at top) is recognized as one of the top
defenders in Essex County and the Super Essex Conference while Belleville
senior midfielder Max Correa (above) has been outstanding with the ball this season,
collecting 23 assists, among the best in the state.

 

“It felt great to be in the semifinals,” Goncalves said. “I told the kids that it was already an achievement to get there. I told them if they walk off the field, they should do so with their heads held high. I just believe that they felt the pressure a little bit, playing Livingston at home with our fans there at night. It was tough for them, but I’m very proud of them.”

The Buccaneers were set to face Morristown in the opening round of the NJSIAA North Jersey Section 1, Group IV state playoffs Monday.

In goal, the Bucs have used senior Kevin Coronel in goal, but he hit his head in the win against Millburn in the Essex County tourney. Junior Jason Cadena has filled in admirably in net. Junior Elias Tapia is another reserve.

The Buccaneers have two of the best defenders around in seniors Marlon Rodriguez and P.J. Gencarelli, both of whom have been with the program for four years.

“Having them back has helped tremendously,” Goncalves said. “They’ve both together helped us scoring on set pieces, scoring at least 11 goals with headers.”

Junior Maverick Garcia and senior Nelson Pichardo round out the Buccaneers’ solid defensive unit, with seniors David Esquivel and Cesar Idirovo coming off the bench.

Senior Max Correa has been a huge plus for the Belleville midfield. Correa has 23 assists, among the leaders in the state.

“He always plays defensive minded and assist first,” Goncalves said. “He could have scored more goals, because he really has a good shot, but he prefers to give it off for assists. He’s just a complete player.”

Others in the midfield include seniors Randy Fernandez, Kevin Vicente and junior Jairo Campoverde. Senior Carlos Fuentes and junior Chris Sosa are key reserves off the bench, with senior Marco Guaman also coming in as a reserve.

Senior Muhammad Cheikali is another midfielder who Goncalves uses off the bench.

On the forward line, the Buccaneers have Matthew Gavidia, who has scored 10 goals, and senior Luis Lopez, the team’s super striker, who has knocked home 23 goals. “Lopez is tremendously fast,” Goncalves said. “He’s very quick and gets to a lot of balls with his speed. When he gets the ball, he’s very lethal and is difficult to stop.”

Senior Gerson Hernandez can contribute at either the forward or midfield slots. Senior Daniel Bamimore is another key reserve for the Belleville front line.

Whatever happened in the state playoffs Monday would not deter what has been a tremendous season, especially with the preseason turmoil.

“I told them that this has been really exciting,” Goncalves said. “There were a lot of challenges. We faced a lot of tough teams all season. But we grew as a team through it all in all respects. It was exciting, challenging and it was worth it for me to have the experience.”

Maybe the Belleville Board of Education can do the right thing and insure that both Goncalves and Marino, health permitting, will be back next season. The successful program needs to have some sort of stability, even with all the top players graduating.

Route 21 crash claims two lives Monday night

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Above: The approximate location of last night’s deadly crash.

BELLEVILLE —

A multi-vehicle crash on Route 21 South claimed the lives of two people in Belleville on Monday, Nov. 3, according to the Essex County Prosecutor’s Office and the Belleville Police Department.

The crash involved three vehicles at around 7:30 p.m., the prosecutor’s office said.

Reports say a tractor trailer overturned on to a car. Afterward, a fire started, reports said.

The two deceased, whose names have not yet been released, were traveling in the same car, and were pronounced dead on scene, according to reports.

The crash is being investigated by the Belleville Police Department and the Essex County Prosecutor’s Office’s Major Crimes Task Force.

We’ll share more information about this crash once it becomes available.

Those with details about the crash are asked to call the task force a 877-847-7432.

— Kevin Canessa Jr.

Lyndhurst’s Failace makes remarkable comeback

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By Jim Hague 

Observer Sports Writer 

Jessica Failace vividly remembers the day that dramatically changed her life.

“We were playing River Dell in the county playoffs (two years ago),” said Failace, the Lyndhurst High School senior. “My knee twisted the wrong way. I heard it pop.”

The results were staggering. Not only did Failace tear the anterior cruciate ligament (ACL), but she also damaged her meniscus.

“There was only 1:44 left in the game,” Failace said. “I knew it was bad.”

It also came at an emotional time in Failace’s life. Just eight days prior to the injury, Failace lost her beloved grandfather, Frank Benedetto, Sr.

“It was a hard time for me,” Failace said. “It was absolutely horrible. I had everything I loved to do taken from me.”

However, Failace was determined to get back to the soccer field and to the track (where she competes in the middle distance races).

Failace’s uncle, Frank Benedetto Jr., is a physical therapist who works at Paramus Orthopedic Physical Therapy.

“He took care of me right away,” Failace said. “I was blessed that he helped me. I ended up needing two surgeries. I was non-weight bearing for 66 days. But the day after my last surgery, I started physical therapy. Those were the worst days of my life, but they changed me. Those days made me who I am today. I completely believe that things happen for a reason. It all made me a stronger person.

” Failace worked diligently in her physical therapy in order to make it back to the soccer pitch and back to the track.

“I worked very hard,” Failace said. “I wanted to come back better than ever.”

Fast forward to 2014. Failace entered her senior year with high hopes and expectations.

“I felt as a senior and as a captain, I had to step up for my team,” Failace said.

Last year, Failace played for the Golden Bears, but she was limited in what she could do.

“I doubted myself a little,” said Failace, who played while wearing a bulky brace on her injured knee.

“You could definitely tell that she wasn’t 100%,” said Lyndhurst head girls’ soccer coach Kim Hykey. “She was wearing the brace and she just basically got through the year.”

But when practices began in earnest for the 2014 season, Failace was a different person and player. The bulky brace was gone.

“This year, it’s like, `What injury?’” Hykey said. “Her speed and confidence is back. It’s night and day to what she once was.”

“It upset me that people always came to me and asked me how I was doing,” Failace said. “I wasn’t able to run like I used to. I wanted to become better than I was.”

Failace scored two goals as a freshman, one as a sophomore and two as a junior. But no one could expect the explosion that she has enjoyed this year as a senior.

“She has been playing phenomenally,” Hykey said.

No one could have ever anticipated what Failace could accomplish this season – or for the last two weeks, scoring two or more goals in five straight games.

Failace scored two goals and added an assist against Leonia, had two goals against Queen of Peace, scored two goals and had two assists against Bergen Charter, had the three-goal hat trick against Dwight-Englewood and scored two more against Ridgefield.

For the season, Failace has tallied an astounding 20 goals and added five assists.

For her efforts, Failace has been selected as The Observer Athlete of the Week for the past week.

“I think I have much more confidence this year,” Failace said. “Going through physical therapy has made me stronger and gives me confidence that I can shoot with either leg. I can shoot from all different angles.”

Hykey said she remembers the turning point for her senior captain.

“When I noticed her turning point was in the beginning of the season,” Hykey said, “She wasn’t scoring much, but I noticed that she hustled and played well against Glen Rock. I don’t know if that gave her confidence, but from that point on, she got started and has been amazing. She has been making shots from ridiculous angles. I didn’t know she could do that.

Added Hykey, “She plays the left side (of the midfield) and has developed a left shot. Her left foot has become very good. She’s not afraid to take a shot with her left foot.”

Failace admits that she has fully recovered from the knee injury.

“I feel like I’m better than ever,” Failace said. “I feel less limited than I was. I’m much better without the brace. It feels great to be able to do this. I’m completely recovered.”

The Golden Bears are also enjoying success, with a 17-2 record and a top seed in the NJSIAA North Jersey Section 2, Group I state playoffs that begin this week.

“She’s been a surprise, a pleasant surprise,” Hykey said.

Hykey likes the chemistry she has with fellow midfielder Amanda Fulcher. Another team captain, Giana DiTonto, has an incredible 31 assists.

“Amanda has done a great job distributing the ball,” Hykey said. “Jess has been getting open through the defense and making shots.”

Hykey also counts on Failace to be a leader.

“She’s awesome,” Hykey said. “She’s like having another coach on the field. She’s smart and knows what has to be done. She always tries to do the right thing.”

Failace also runs track and holds the school record for the 400-meter run as well as two records with Lyndhurst relay teams.

Failace is also a standout in the classroom. She’s currently ranked No. 2 in the Lyndhurst Class of 2015 with a grade point average of 4.16 and a score of 1810 in the Scholastic Aptitude Tests.

Failace has not made a commitment to college. Because of her experience in the field, she wants to become a physical therapist and will attend an accelerated six-year program in college.

She’s undecided about the school and whether she will play soccer in college. “I might run track and play club soccer,”

Failace said. “I’m not ready to give up playing soccer.” Failace also has a reputation off the field.

“She’s a goofball,” Hykey said. “I will come to my office and find 75 Post-It stickers on my wall that say, ‘Jess is the best.’ I don’t even have to read them to know who’s done it.”

“I just want to leave my mark when I go,” Failace said. “I like having fun. People meet me and they think I’m quiet and shy, but I’m actually quite the opposite.”

So the fun-loving captain is enjoying life once again – and scoring goals at will.

“It all made me a stronger person,” Failace said. “I am absolutely better than ever. I was asked if I wanted to have plastic surgery to hide my scars on my knee. I want them there forever as a reminder of what I’ve been through. They made me who I am.”

‘Sleeping Beauty’at W.H.A.T.

Sleeping Beauty

The West Hudson Arts Theater Company (W.H.A.T.), 65 Oakwood Ave., Kearny, continues its run of family theater stage performances with Disney’s “Sleeping Beauty.” Performances are Friday, Nov. 7, at 7:30 p.m.; Saturday, Nov. 8, at 1 p.m.; Saturday, Nov. 15, at 1 and 4 p.m., and Sunday, Nov. 16, at 1 p.m.

Young theater-goers are encouraged to wear their best Prince and Princess costumes to the performances.

All tickets are $8. Group rates are available. Tickets are available online at www.whatco.org or by calling 201- 467-8624.

Obituaries

Gilbert R. Anderson Sr. 

Gilbert R. Anderson Sr. died peacefully at the home of his daughter on Oct. 28. He was 73.

Gilbert lived in Glen Ridge before moving to North Carolina nine years ago.

Arrangements are by the Armitage and Wiggins Funeral Home, 596 Belgrove Drive, Kearny. A funeral service was held at Christ Episcopal Church, Glen Ridge, followed by a private cremation.

Gilbert is survived by his wife Mary Ellen (nee Wayte), his children and their spouses Elizabeth Ann and John A. Anderson, Jr., Kristen L. and Simon J. Hamill and Gilbert R. Jr. and Caitlin Anderson. He was the brother of Norman (Beverly), George M. Jr. (Judith), Kathleen Hall (Fred), John (Catherine), James (Joeann), Mary (Richard) McClusky and Elizabeth Jean Anderson. Also surviving are his grandchildren Jack, Charlie, Liam, Aiden, Kayleigh and Jenna. In lieu of flowers, please consider a donation to www.fisherhouse.org or www.WoundedWarriorproject/donate.org.

Gloria P. Bornako 

Gloria P. Bornako (nee Lambert) 90, of Virginia Beach, Va., formerly of North Arlington and Kearny, died on Oct. 24.

Arrangements were by the Armitage and Wiggins Funeral Home, 596 Belgrove Drive, Kearny. A Mass of Christian burial was held at Queen of Peace Church, North Arlington, followed by interment in Holy Cross Cemetery.

Born in Newark, Mrs. Bornako lived in Kearny and North Arlington before moving to Virginia Beach, two years ago. She was a systems control coordinator with Prudential Insurance in Roseland for 25 years, retiring in 1998.

She was the beloved wife of the late Louis Bornako and dear mother of Gregory (Susan) and Richard (Maria) Bornako and the late Louise Tweedus and Michael Bornako.; mother-in-law of Rob (Linda) Tweedus; sister of the late Ruth Augustyniak; grandmother of Kristoffer, Richard Louis and Erik Peter Bornako and Louiseann Cameron; great-grandmother of Courtney and Syke and aunt of Frances Hansen, Ruth Larkin and Gloria Szynal.

Malachy Joseph Byrne 

Byrne_web

Malachy Joseph Byrne “Mack” died suddenly on Oct. 31 at Beth Israel Medical Center in Newark. He was only 2 years and 7 months old.

Arrangements are through the Armitage Wiggins Funeral Home in Kearny www.armitagewiggins.com His funeral Mass will be on Wednesday, Nov. 5, at 10:30 a.m. at St. Stephen’s Church, Kearny and he will be laid to rest in Holy Cross Cemetery, North Arlington. Following the cemetery service, all are welcome to gather at Manor Park across from their home at the corners of W. Bennett Ave. and Hamilton Ave. in Kearny to release balloons in the park that Mack loved so much.

Mack is the beloved son of Gary (JCFD) and Alyson (nee Levinson) Byrne. He was the favorite little brother of Zachary and was the grandson of Irene and Joseph LaGreca, the late Gary Byrne (BFD), the late Mary “Mimi” and the late Jay Levinson. Greatgrandson of Edna “Nana” and the late Augie “Papa” Byrne, he is also survived by his aunts and uncle, Cheryl and Russell de Moose and Michele Matos and his cousins Jessica and Shannon.

However brief Mack’s life was, he will live on through the courageous and loving decision of his parents to donate his organs. This selfless act has saved the lives of eight little babies.

In lieu of flowers, kindly consider a donation to The New Jersey Sharing Network or Make a Wish Foundation.

Evelyn A. Fitzsimmons 

Evelyn A. Fitzsimmons, 73, of Kearny, died on Oct. 30.

Arrangements were by the Armitage and Wiggins Funeral Home, 596 Belgrove Drive, Kearny. A Mass of Christian burial was held at St. Stephen’s Church, Kearny, followed by interment in Holy Cross Cemetery.

Born in Newark, Mrs. Fitzsimmons moved to Kearny in 1971.

She was the daughter of the late Evelyn Arnold Carlin; beloved wife of the late Leo Fitzsimmons; dear mother of Mary DaSilva, Bernedette Marques, Kathy Murphy, Terry Fitzsimmons and the late Evelyn A. Fitzsimmons and Leo Fitzsimmons, Jr.; sister of Barbara Muelli and the late Patricia Kmon; grandmother of Candice DaSilva Yaacobi, Leo Ryan Fitzsimmons, Crystal DaSilva, Samantha Marques, Matthew, Rebecca and Sarah Murphy; and aunt of Kimberly Delvecchio and her children David and Veronica.

Jean King 

Jean King (Siwick), 91, died on Oct. 19 at home in Kearny.

Arrangements were by the Thiele-Reid Family Funeral Home, 585 Belgrove Drive, Kearny. A funeral Mass was offered at Our Lady of Sorrows Church, Kearny, followed by interment in Holy Cross Cemetery, North Arlington. Condolences and memories may be shared at www.thielereid.com.

Mrs. King was born and raised in Bloomfield and lived in Kearny for the last 70 years.

She was a quality inspector for R.C.A. in Harrison for 30 years, retiring in 1976.

Jean was a proud member of the Senior Citizens Club of Kearny, Inc., the Henrietta Benstead Friendship and Harmony Club of Kearny and the Golden 60 Plus Club of Our Lady of Sorrows Church.

She is survived by her daughters Patricia DeVita and Diane Drucker and two granddaughters Christine De- Vita and Donna Joy Drucker.

She was predeceased by her husband Peter in 1992.

Stephen A. Lipyanek 

Stephen A. Lipyanek died Nov. 1. He was 69.

Born in Newark, he moved to Kearny 37 years ago.

Visiting will be on Wednesday, Nov. 5, from 6 to 9 p.m., at the Armitage Wiggins Funeral Home, 596 Belgrove Drive, Kearny. A funeral Mass will be offered on Thursday, Nov. 6, at 9:30 a.m. in St. Stephen’s Church. Cremation will follow at Rosedale Crematory in Orange. To leave online condolences, please visit www.armitagewiggins.com.

Stephen is survived by his devoted wife of 35 years Maria (nee Lourdes). Brother in law of Domingo Ela Jr., he is also survived by many loving and cherished friends.

George McCarthy 

McCarthy_web

George McCarthy, of San Francisco, Calif., passed away on Oct. 16 at age 64 from metastatic cancer.

He was born to George and Edna McCarthy (nee Conley) in Kearny, where he graduated from St. Cecilia’s High School. He attended Rutgers Newark University where he majored in sociology.

He was predeceased by his parents and brother Daniel. He is survived by five siblings: Marianne Petriello (Robert), Eugene (Patricia), Kathleen (Craig Geis), Edward, and Michael (Nancy MacDonald) and 15 nieces and nephews.

George was employed by several well-known San Francisco companies, Western Can and Winterland Productions, for many years in computer support. Donations in George’s memory can be made to the Tom Waddell Urban Clinic, 230 Golden Gate Ave., San Francisco, Calif. 94102 or to KQED, 2601 Mariposa St., San Francisco, Calif. 94110.

Gwen Rodgers 

Gwen Rodgers, of Bradenton, Fla., formerly of Harrison, entered eternal rest on Aug. 14. Gwen was the widow of Jack Rodgers, the deceased Harrison fire chief. She was 81.

Gwen was an active member of the American Legion Post 24 in Bradenton. She was only the second female commander of the post since its inception 90 years ago. Gwen was a veteran of the Korean War and served in the Women’s Army Corps.

Gwen is survived by her brother, Robert Parslow, a daughter Karen Mauriello and granddaughters Kim Mauriello, Nicki Montcalvo. She is also survived by three great-granddaughters, Kaitlyn, Skyla and Annabella, great-grandson Vincenzo, all from Bradenton, Fla.

Gwen is also survived by her extended family in New Jersey: Sharon Holmes of Morristown, Jack Rodgers of Harrison, Elaine Gage and husband Alan of Roxbury, Mike Rodgers of Brick. She was also survived by grandchildren Colleen Holmes Luzaj, Robert Holmes, John Colasanti, Brian Gage, Sarah Gage and all their children.

Gwen will also be missed by all her friends in the Harrison area.

Her immediate family requests that any donations in Gwen’s memory can be made to the Veteran’s Relief Fund at American Legion Post 24, Bradenton, Fla. 34207.

Mildred P. Ward 

Mrs. Mildred P. Ward (nee Wittek) of Kearny passed away on Tuesday, Oct. 28. She was 85.

The funeral Mass was offered on Friday, Oct. 31, at St. Stephen’s Church, Kearny, Entombment followed in Holy Cross Chapel Mausoleum. Condon Funeral Home (condonfuneralhome.com) 684 Kearny Ave., Kearny, was entrusted with the arrangements.

Mrs. Ward had been a clerk for Prudential Insurance Co. in Newark before retiring many years ago.

Wife of the late Joseph P. Ward, she is survived by her children Bernadette McDonald and her husband, Stephen, Patrick Ward and his wife, Judith and Claire Wiggins and her husband, John. Also surviving are her grandchildren Erin, John, Christopher, Stephen, Julia and Kelly.

In lieu of flowers, please make donations to St. Barnabas Hospice or St. Stephen’s Church. Envelopes will be available in the funeral home.

Pedaling for pantry

ShopRite Pedal_web

ShopRite of Lyndhurst, an Inserra Supermarkets store, recently partnered with Cabot Creamery Cooperative to raise hunger awareness, with store associates and customers competing to win 200 pounds of Cabot cheese for a local food pantry.

“Pedal Out Hunger” is part of the ShopRite Partners-In- Caring Program. Since its inception in 1999, more than $27 million has been donated to 1,700 hunger relief agencies in New Jersey, New York, Connecticut, Delaware, Pennsylvania and Maryland.

Ferrarro resigns, takes buyout

FERRARO

By Ron Leir
Observer Correspondent 

KEARNY – 

After months of wrangling with his employer, the Kearny Board of Education, Frank Ferraro has tendered his resignation as Kearny superintendent of schools, effective Nov. 1.

Ferraro, who was facing the threat of being fired after the board had brought tenure charges against him, decided to walk away from his $167,500 a year job following a settlement agreement approved by the board at its Oct. 20 meeting.

Ferraro’s contract ran through June 30, 2016, but he will receive no salary for any part of 2015 or 2016.

Under that agreement, in return for voluntarily stepping down from the post, Ferraro will receive nearly $70,000, representing the equivalent of a combined total of about four months’ in salary plus accrued vacation payments.

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