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Pro Wrestling to stomp on Belleville

Courtesy of NPWS/ Pro Wrestling to stomp on Belleville.


By Jeff Bahr

Belleville will be treated to raucous larger-than-life physical theater (ouch!) when all-star professional wrestling returns to town for two shows on Friday and Saturday, Aug. 17 and 18, at the Knights of Columbus hall, 94 Bridge St. The event will be hosted by National Pro-Wrestling Superstars (NPWS) and will help to benefit the Knights of Columbus organization.

The Friday night show pays tribute to WWE Hall-of-Fame manager, Captain Lou Albano, who passed on to that great squared-circle-in-the-sky in 2009.

For those who remember the 350-pound Albano, nothing more really needs to be said. For those that don’t, the man who wore the cheesy rubber band around his beard and acted as one-third of the “Triumvirate of Terror” was equal parts vile, tasteless, underhanded, conniving, despicable, sleazy, backstabbing, hateful, creepy, and gross.

Most importantly, however, Albano was and still is beloved by wrestling fans worldwide. You say that last description doesn’t square with the ones that came before it? Look, jabroni, as the pro wrestlers say, don’t go there! We all might meet Captain Lou in person when our time on earth expires. We don’t need to get the big fellow mad!

With this brand of admiration for Albano in mind, the annual 2012 Captain Lou Albano Memorial J-Cup Tag-Team Tournament is slated to bend the turnbuckles at 7:45 p.m. The one-night single elimination tournament will feature “twelve of the best tag-teams on the independent circuit today,” according to NPWS spokesman Joe Panzarino.

The 2011 winning team of tag-team wrestlers, Delaware’s own “Mr. Entertainment” J.D. Smoothie & “The White Urkel” B. Fehrm will be on hand to defend their shiny trophy. Other pairings will include the bone-smashing talents of The Gavone Brothers (“Smiling Smith James and Big Vic Vorhees), the Lords of Rock and Roll (The Jersey Kidd and “Retro Rocker” Rikki Roxx), and ROH star, Rhett “The Threat” Titus. NPWS Junior Heavyweight Champion “Jersey Shore Jock” Mike Dennis will also be on hand, reports Panzarino.

Returning Saturday night for a second dose of confrontations, altercations and lacerations, NPWS is featuring defending tournament winner “The Love Machine” Nicky Oceans and a host of other wrestlers in the 2012 Chris Candido Memorial Jersey J-Cup Tournament – a one-night single elimination competition featuring “some of the best cruiserweights and junior heavyweights on the circuit today,” an NPWS press release says.

The New Jersey-born Candido, a former star of the WWE, ECW, and TNA wrestling organizations, passed away in 2005 at just 33 years of age.

Women Superstars Uncensored stars Alicia, Jennifer Cruz, and Kimberly will also be making appearances during the weekend, Panzarino said.

Single show tickets are priced at $19 for adults and $17 for children and seniors. Two-show tickets are available for $28. Tickets are available at the following outlets:

Belleville: Rosebuds, 528 Joralemon St.

Nutley: Maniero’s Sport Shop, 234 Franklin Ave.

Kearny: New Linden Deli, 690 Kearny Ave.

North Arlington: United Check Cashing: 7 Ridge Rd.

‘The only thing we have to fear…’

When President Franklin D. Roosevelt delivered the above words during his 1933 inaugural address, he was reinforcing his belief that widespread fear, coming as a result of an enduring economic depression, was a crippling force.

Roosevelt hoped to convey how unreasoning fear could be an obstacle in efforts to move the country forward.

The President’s statement came nearly a decade before the Japanese sneak attack on Pearl Harbor, and generations before the 9/11 terrorists’ attacks on New York and Washington, D.C. Still, Roosevelt’s words carried an interchangeable quality that could and should be applied to the American psyche today.

Less than two weeks ago our country was thrown into a tailspin when a crazed gunman killed 12 people and injured dozens during a shooting spree at a Colorado movie theater.

In a cruel instant this seemingly benign setting – a place that people regularly flock to in order to escape the shackles of reality – had been turned into a killing den. Not surprisingly, this prompted the question: Is any location truly safe?

The short answer is that there really is no answer – there is only our perception of that answer.

Philosophers, pragmatists and others have long argued whether human beings are subject to an inalterable fate bestowed upon them, or are captains of their own ships – able to change course midstream to avoid unwanted outcomes.

Many of us believe that there are things in life that simply cannot be avoided. Consider the unlucky victims of the now infamous Colorado movie theater attack. Not one of them knew the cruel fate that awaited them when they plunked down their money to buy a ticket. How could they? In this regard, they were no different than moviegoers in Kearny, North Arlington, Lyndhurst, Belleville, or anywhere else.

Put simply, life is a crapshoot. You pay your money and you take your chances, as the saying goes.

This philosophy squares perfectly with Roosevelt’s assertion. Since no one knows what comes next in life, what’s to be gained by fretting over it? Fear will only stymie our efforts at living a happy, productive life, and none of us wants that.

Additionally, this takeitasitcomes outlook robs terrorists and wouldbe terrorists of the very response that they seek, so that outcome, too, is a major selling point.

“Que sera sera, whatever will be, will be, the future’s not ours to see…” go the lyrics to a popular song that might just be the ideal anthem for our times. See you at the movies!

– Jeff Bahr

Grandmaster Marchetti: Pride of Kearny

Photo by Karen Zautyk/ Grandmaster Vincent Marchetti in the Kearny dojo with just a small fraction of the awards he has earned.


By Karen Zautyk

Well, whaddya know? The pen really is mightier than the sword. Or the mugger.

I found this out from Grandmaster Vincent Marchetti when I visited his Kearny Martial Arts dojo at 67 Kearny Ave. the other day.

As I sat down to interview him and began taking notes about self-defense, he pointed to my pen and said, “That is one of the best weapons you can have.” Aside from jabbing an assailant in a vital spot or two, the pen can be used to mark the creep with ink, the better for cops to ID him when caught. Who knew?

And who knew that one of the world’s top practitioners of martial arts could be found right here, just across from West Hudson Park? The international martial arts community, that’s who.

I had been intrigued by a short article in The Observer a couple of weeks ago about Marchetti, a 10th degree Black Belt, being honored at an international conference in Orlando. Also attending that event was Joe Pung, a blackbelt Sensei and the school’s chief instructor.

I wanted to learn more about the (to me) mysterious martial arts, and the learning started as soon as I entered the dojo, which bears a sign reading: Police Tactics Instructors of America National Headquarters. Really? Really. Marchetti is the director of said group.

Marchetti is also 73 years old and of fairly slender build and middling height. But if he were pitted against the combined forces of the Incredible Hulk, Batman’s nemesis Bane and the entire N.Y. Giants team, my money would be on Marchetti.

The walls of the dojo are covered with awards (he holds 400+) attesting to his skills in Karate, Judo, Jujitsu and Michi Budo Ryu – the last being a martial arts system that combines the other three.

Marchetti developed it himself in 1992. A skill now offi cially certifi ed by 19 grandmasters, Michi Budo Ryu translates as the “Best of the Street Fighting.”

All four disciplines are taught at Kearny Martial Arts, which Marchetti founded 42 years ago and which moved to its present location from Midland Ave.

The Kearny resident proudly notes that his school is the oldest of its kind in America and one of the least costly in the Northeast. And there are “no phony or child Black Belts.”

There are, however, child students, who start training as early as age 5, not only in martial arts, but in history and Japanese vocabulary. “We are trying to improve the mind as well as the body,” Marchetti said, explaining that his program is not just about selfdefense, but also education.

And it is about instilling self-esteem, confi dence and, above all, respect. “For yourself, for your family and for all others.” The Grandmaster noted that, at the start of each children’s class, the youngsters are asked, “What did you do for your parents this week?”

While Marchetti should be commended for his devotion to his local students – children, teens and adults – it’s his devotion to this country, its law enforcement agencies and its military that is unparalleled.

Marchetti, an Army veteran himself, has trained – among others – Navy Seals, Green Berets, White House security offi cers, the U.S. Capitol police, U.S. Air Marshals and the Department of Defense (DOD) Swift Reaction Team, which is comparable to a police SWAT unit. Marchetti is assisted in the SRT courses by a buddy, Sgt. Jeffrey Graf, who is now second in command of the DOD’s counterterrorism unit and one of whose skills involves rappelling, head fi rst, out a window while fi ring an assault rifl e. (We saw the photos.)

When training members of the armed forces, Marchetti does it on his own dime. The Pentagon might provide lodging and transportation, but the Grandmaster accepts no payment for the classes. That’s because he refuses to follow Pentagon guidelines to specifi cally grade his students. “I won’t hurt anyone’s career,” he explained.

The military training is of the lethal variety: chokes, suffocation, strangulation, neck snaps, etc.

Photo courtesy Kearny Martial Arts/ At Fort Knox, Ky., Kearny’s Vincent Marchetti (front row, center) trained members of Delta Force, the Lexington (Ky.) SWAT team and the Counterterrorism Rapid Response Team of the Department of Homeland Security. This is one of the ‘graduation’ photos with representatives of all the units.


The more sensitive among you might find the above offensive. Too bad. The troops are being taught how to stay alive in combat, and personally, I have no problem with that.

For the past couple of years, Marchetti’s special classes have been devoted to the military, so he has less time for training police departments, but he used to be quite active in that. The police training, however, is not lethal. Rather, it focuses on how a cop can take down a suspect without using any weapons, such as a gun or a taser, while keeping himself or herself safe.

If Marchetti were not so constantly busy, he could write a best-selling autobiography, starting with growing up tough in Jersey City, where he began boxing at age 7. (His uncle was a pro fighter.)

So when did he get into martial arts? Around age 12, on the day he nearly ran down a Japanese gentleman with his bicycle, except that the potential victim “swept the front wheel out from under me,” Marchetti said.

“I jumped up and wanted to fight,” Marchetti said, recalling how he had assumed a boxing stance. But the man pointed around the corner and gestured toward a storefront with all the windows blacked out.

Little Vincent, suspecting nefarious intent, ran home to tell his uncle, who sprinted back to the storefront and banged on the door. When it was opened by the Japanese man, the uncle could see images on the wall depicting martial arts combatants.

“Hey, stupid,” he told his nephew. “This is Judo.” And he enrolled Vincent in the school. And the rest is history.

Evidence of that history now bedecks the walls of the Kearny dojo. Among the awards and photos is an oil painting of Marchetti, the original of which hangs in the World Martial Arts Hall of Fame in Chicago.

The Grandmaster is depicted in fighting stance, with a panther peering over his shoulder – the panther chosen by the Hall of Fame to represent Marchetti’s combat style: stealth. “You get as close as you can, and then you strike.”

On another wall is a simple framed plaque that reads: “If a student fails to learn, a teacher fails to teach. You never failed us!” And it’s signed, “Your devoted students.”

We’d bet that one means as much, or more to Marchetti, than all the others.

(For more info on Marchetti’s dojo, visit kearnymartialarts.com.)

Around Town


• Kearny Public Library will be premiering two films new to DVD. Both films will be shown downstairs at the Main Library, located at 318 Kearny Ave., in Kearny. Start times for each are listed below. Popcorn and light refreshments will be served. Everyone is welcome, but please note the rating for each film. The schedule is as follows:

Tuesday, Aug. 28 at 3 p.m.: “The Hunger Games” (PG-13) Starring Jennifer Lawrence and Josh Hutcherson. Adaptation of the bestselling book by Suzanne Collins.

Friday, Aug. 31 at 3 p.m. “Battleship” (PG-13) Starring Brooklyn Decker and Alexander Skarsgard. Based on the classic Hasbro naval combat game.

• Kearny UNICO is hard at work planning an Italian Heritage Event for Sunday, Oct. 7, from 1:30 to 5 p.m., at the Henrietta Benstead Senior Center on Columbia Avenue in Kearny. There is no charge to attend the event.

The committee planning the event is looking to include such activities as a mozzarella making demonstration, an Italian lesson, Italian songs and music, bocce’ play and rules, Italian food tastings and much, much more. There is even the possibility for an up-close viewing of Ferrari cars.

Although the event is provided free of charge, space is limited. Individuals interested in attending the event are asked to contact Kearny UNICO Vice President Joe Sgalia at either 201-998-6879 or joeys1218@aol.com as soon as possible.

Anyone interested in learning more about – or joining – Kearny UNICO should also contact Mr. Sgalia.


• Mary Lou Mullins monthly bus trip to Atlantic City to Resorts Casino will be held on Sunday, Aug. 26. Cost is $25 with $25 return. The bus will leave from St. Michael’s Church parking lot at 10:30 a.m. sharp. Refreshments will be served with Bingo and activities on the bus. Please make reservations early. Call Mary Lou at 201-933-2186 for more information.

• NJMC will have pontoon boat tours on: Aug. 8 and Aug. 10, at 5:30 p.m.; Aug. 11 at 8:30 a.m. Cost is $15 per person.

Get an up-close view of the Meadowlands District’s spectacular scenic beauty and wildlife with a two-hour guided pontoon boat cruise of the Hackensack River and its surrounding marshes. Experienced NJMC staff will discuss the region’s human and environmental history and point out birds and other wildlife along the way.

Pontoon boat cruises depart from River Barge Park, 260 Outwater Lane, Carlstadt. For ages 10 and up. Pre-registration required. For a complete schedule, directions and to register, visit www.njmeadowlands.gov or call 201-460- 4640.

• Fourth Annual Kevin Karlson Shorebird Day, with the NJMC and Bergen County Audubon Society, will be held on Saturday, Aug. 11, from 8:15 a.m. to 3:45 p.m.

Spend the day with noted shorebird expert and nature photographer Kevin Karlson. Karlson is leading 90-minute bird walks with a talk on “Tips on Becoming a Better Birder” at 12:45 p.m. At 1:45 p.m., Karlson will discuss and show images from his latest books.

At 2:30 p.m., he and another noted photographer, Lloyd Spitalnik, will lead an hourlong wildlife photography workshop. All events are free, but you must sign a standard liability release for 2012 if you have not already. To R.S.V.P., contact Don Torino of the BCAS at greatauk4@aol.com or 201-230-4983.

• The Lyndhurst Health Department is collecting donations for students in need. Items of interest are backpacks, dividers, and threering binders. Donations can be dropped off at the Health Department at 253 Stuyvesant Avenue from 9 a.m. through 4 p.m. Please deliver donations prior to Aug. 31. If you have a child in need, please contact the Health Department at 201- 804-2500 to schedule a pickup of the needed supplies.


• Local artist Richard Greenman’s August display at the Nutley Free Public Library features vibrant paintings and carefully designed sketches this artist has fine-tuned. Greenman’s artwork is primarily based on incorporating his favorite photographs and paintings into works of his own. He mainly creates landscapes and nature scenes. This show at the Nutley Public Library is Greenman’s first exhibit.

Kearny’s Adamek gets another Prudential Center fight

Sept. 8 battle with Walker an afternoon production

Photo by Jim Hague/ Kearny resident Tomasz Adamek (left) poses with his next opponent, Travis Walker, as the two prepare for their Sept. 8 showdown at the Prudential Center. The fight will take place in the afternoon, a rarity in local boxing circles.


By Jim Hague


Tomasz Adamek knows that he’s not getting any younger. The Kearny resident and top heavyweight boxing contender will turn 36 in December. He understands that he cannot be a boxer forever; that the window of opportunity to fight again for the heavyweight championship he lost last September is closing rapidly.

That’s why Adamek doesn’t want to waste time away from the ring. After defeating Eddie Chambers June 16 at the Prudential Center in Newark, Adamek has already booked his next fight, a Sept. 8 showdown with monstrous Travis Walker of Houston.

However, the Adamek-Walker heavyweight showdown and undercard will feature something different. It will be held in the afternoon in order so that the fight can be televised live via pay-per-view back to Adamek’s native Poland.

The card will begin at 2 p.m. with the Adamek- Walker fight slated to begin around 5 p.m.

“It’s 5 p.m. here, but it’s 11 p.m. in Poland,” Adamek explained at a pre-fight press conference last Wednesday at the Prudential Center. “Usually, the people in Poland have to get up at 4:30-5 o’clock in the morning to see me fight here. This is good for us.”

Adamek’s immense popularity in his native land has caused the promoters to push the card in the afternoon.

“They play football in the afternoon and basketball,” said Kathy Duva, the president of Main Events, the primary promoter for the card, along with Ziggy Promotions, headed by Kearny resident Ziggy Rozalski. “They play hockey in the afternoon. Back in the day, there were all televised boxing shows were in the afternoon. Pay-per-view is the way Tomasz makes his money. By bringing the fight to prime time in Poland, we can get more viewers. It’s ideal for them.”

In fact, plans are already in place to have Adamek’s next fight take place in December, also in the afternoon. It may cut down on attendance in the Prudential Center, Adamek’s home away from home, but it will lead to more revenue in Poland.

“We just have to make sure to get the message out that it’s in the afternoon,” Duva said. “That’s the challenge.”

Adamek, now 46-2 with 28 knockouts in his professional career, has won his last two fights after losing to Vitali Klitschko in Poland for the WBC heavyweight title last September, defeating Nagy Aguilera in March and Chambers in June.

He was asked if he needed more time off after his last fight.

“No, I move quickly,” Adamek said. “I can’t stay home. I have nothing to do there. I want to be in the ring.”

Adamek has no qualms facing a much larger opponent. The 33-year-old Walker, who has a 39-7-1 career mark with 31 knockouts, stands 6-foot-5 and weighs 245 pounds.

“I’m getting a chance to fight Travis,” Adamek said. “He’s a tough fighter and he wants to fight. It’s a good challenge for me. I’m ready for a good fight.”

Adamek has already been training for the Walker fight, doing daily work at his training location in Jersey City.

“We’re in our third week of training,” Adamek said. “I feel good and healthy.”

Adamek said that he’s still on course for another possible heavyweight title fight in 2013.

“That’s the goal,” Adamek said. “I’ll be ready for another title fight then. By next year in the summer, I’ll be ready for that chance. This is the kind of fi ght people want to see. Travis is a warrior. It will be a good fight.”

Walker, who won his last fight in March against Kali Meehan in Australia, knows that this fi ght represents his last chance at eventually fighting for a heavyweight title.

“It’s definitely a good chance, as well as my last chance,” said the Tallahassee, Florida native. “It’s taken me four years to get back up in the rankings (currently No. 12 among heavyweights) and I don’t have four years to get back again.”

Walker knows fighting Adamek is a big challenge.

“He’s more like a light heavyweight with the way he moves,” Walker said. “I have to respect that. He also throws a lot of punches and moves well, so I have to be ready for that. I’m already working on his style, but I’m going to have things for him.”

Walker said that he watched tapes of Adamek’s last fight against Chambers.

“He (Chambers) was hitting Adamek any time he wanted with his right hand,” Walker said. “That gives me encouragement. I thought Chambers won that fight. I have to put the decision in my own hands. I can’t leave it to the judges.”

The two fighters have two mutual opponents in Chris Arreola and Jason Estrada. Adamek defeated the much larger Arreola in April of 2010, while Walker was knocked out by Arreola in the third round of a fight in November of 2008. Both fi ghters defeated Estrada in their respective careers.

The fight will mark the ninth time that Adamek has fought in the nearby Prudential Center. Adamek has an unblemished 8-0 record at “The Rock.”

Adamek believes that he deserves to get another shot at the heavyweight crown.

“Yeah, I feel I deserve it,” Adamek said. “Every time I fight, I learn something. The fight in Poland (against Klitschko), I wasn’t ready. I wasn’t the true Tomasz Adamek. I trained in Poland for only nine days. I made a mistake. I messed up. Everyone makes mistakes. When I have the next chance, I’ll be ready.”

This next fight is a step in that direction.

Schoener named Kearny boys’ hoops coach


Photo by Jim Hague/ Bill Schoener, the former head coach at Queen of Peace and Becton Regional, has been named as the new head boys’ basketball coach at Kearny.


By Jim Hague

After spending the last four years as the boys’ head basketball coach at Becton Regional High School, Bill Schoener was looking for a new challenge in his coaching career.

Enter Kearny High School.

It’s definitely a huge challenge, going from a successful program at Becton to a struggling program like Kearny. After all, the Kardinals have won only seven games over the last two seasons and it’s been several years since the Kards were even a .500 squad.

“There were a couple of things involved,” said Schoener, who was officially appointed as the new Kearny boys’ basketball coach by the Board of Education last week. “It’s a school close to where I live (Rutherford). It’s a larger school that has had success in other sports. They play in a better league, a very good basketball league (the HCIAL). The facilities are great. It’s everything you can want. Plus, there are a lot of pieces in place.”

The 45-year-old Shoener was also the head coach at Queen of Peace for two years. His final year at the North Arlington school, the Golden Griffi ns were 19-9 and won games in both the Bergen County Jamboree and the NJSIAA state playoffs.

Schoener then went 64-47 over the four years with Becton, including a 21-9 record in 2008, taking the Bulldogs to the NJSIAA North Jersey Section 1, Group I title game.

“I really liked being at Becton,” Schoener said. “I was fortunate to have some success there. But I felt it was time to get a new challenge. It’s a bigger program. We have 35 kids in the program. I like the numbers game. I like having more kids to work with.”

Schoener isn’t concerned about taking over the downtrodden program.

“I guess we can only go up from here,” Schoener said. “That’s the way I look at it. When I took over at Queen of Peace, we hadn’t had a .500 record in a decade. I took over at Becton and they won eight games in four years. So it’s another chance to turn things around.”

Schoener has already met the returning players and began informal workouts to get to know the players a little better.

“I’m pretty excited about it,” Schoener said. “I have been just waiting to see what happened. I went through three interviews and had no idea what was going to happen. It was a little stressful, but I’m glad it’s over now.”

Schoener knows the summer is when most development is done, so he has some work to do.

“The summer is usually so big for me in terms of working with the kids,” Schoener said. “We always put such a big emphasis in the offseason. I met the kids for the first time and I’m anxious to get started. I hope we can get a few things done in the summer, like a camp or something.”

Schoener replaces Bill Mullins, who resigned at the end of the season.

Schoener was asked if he thought he could turn around the Kearny program.

“Absolutely,” Schoener said. “I wouldn’t be there if I didn’t think we can win games. I went to Becton and people said I couldn’t win there. I loved my team in Becton and I am sure I’ll love this team as well. It was time to move on. I’m excited about this challenge. I’m going to like playing the Hudson County schools. It’s great to have a bigger program. Let’s see what happens.”

Kearny resident Beltran set to compete in U.S. Ironman championship

Photo by Jim Hague/ Kearny resident Danny Beltran will compete in the Aquadraat Sports United States Ironman Championships Saturday, a race that will take place in both New York and New Jersey.


By Jim Hague

Danny Beltran is a native of Colombia who arrived in the United States, settling in Kearny several years ago to get an education at Rutgers- Newark.

As any native Colombian, Beltran first grew up playing the sport of soccer. So when he moved to Kearny, he had something to relate to, considering, after all, that Kearny is known readily as “Soccertown, USA.”

Around the same time, Beltran discovered his love for cycling.

“I started cycling and found out that I loved it,” Beltran said.

However, the adoration for biking lasted only a short time. When Beltran was riding his bike in Teaneck, a vehicle struck Beltran, severely injuring him.

“I broke my leg and dislocated my shoulder,” said Beltran, who was 23 years old at the time of the accident. “I also hit my head and ended up in Holy Name Hospital. I decided that was it for me with cycling. I thought it was unsafe.”

Beltran remained off a bicycle for more than 20 years.

Beltran eventually became the worship leader for El Buen Pastor Church in Kearny, while establishing a career as a director of finances for a New York-based advertising firm.

“I try to get balance in my life, with work, with the church, with my family,” said Beltran, who has a wife, Fabricia, and two sons, Daniel, 8, and David, 7.

About three years ago, Beltran took a trip to Bear Mountain State Park in New York.

“I saw a lot of people biking and wanted to do the same,” Beltran said. “But I was completely overweight and out of shape. I had high blood pressure and high cholesterol. I didn’t know if I could do it.”

But Beltran was determined. Despite his physical condition, he purchased a bike.

“I had to do something,” Beltran said.

Beltran decided to go full tilt, entering in triathlons – you know, the grueling test of endurance that features a lengthy swim, a significant bicycle ride and a rugged run, one right after the other.

“I started out slowly,” Beltran said. “I really thought I was a swimmer. It took me a while to get totally hooked, but it happened.”

Beltran started to regularly train to compete in triathlons. He started to feel better, dropping 45 pounds. He got his family involved with riding bikes together.

“I’m now an advocate for a healthier lifestyle,” Beltran said.

On Saturday, Beltran will take the biggest step in his new obsession. He will enter the Aquadraat Sports United States Ironman Championships that will take place in New York and New Jersey.

The race will begin with a 2.4-mile swim in the Hudson River, followed by a 112-mile bike ride along the cliffs of the Palisades Interstate Parkway and conclude with a 26.2-mile run over the George Washington Bridge, ending at 81st Street in the heart of Manhattan.

This will be the 47-year-old Beltran’s first attempt at an Ironman-style triathlon.

“I’m pretty excited,” Beltran said. “When I first started, I just about quit, but now I feel really good and I’m going to finish this.”

To prepare for the grueling course, Beltran said that he has been biking regularly from Kearny to Bear Mountain State park and back.

“That’s 115 miles,” Beltran says, without even flinching.

He’s also been running regularly throughout the streets of Kearny.

“I’m going to do this,” Beltran said. “I’m going to finish this. It’s quite a challenge, but I like this lifestyle. I never thought I could do it. A year ago, it was impossible for me to think about running 26 miles. But I’ve been doing it little by little at my own pace. I’m not going crazy. I’m doing it under a doctor’s care. I’ve been able to keep a normal life. So far, so good.”

Beltran is not worried about the grueling distances.

“I know I’m going to be able to finish,” Beltran said. “I’ve been spending a lot of time training each week. Some train as much as 25 hours per week. I’ve been doing like 10 hours. I know I’m going to do it.”

Beltran said that he’s been training with another triathlete from New York named Alex Braun.

“He’s a friend of mine and he’s become an inspiration,” Beltran said. “We met through bike riding and he’s like me in that he’s almost lost 75 pounds getting healthy. You make a lot of friends doing races like this.”

Beltran is amazed how far he’s come in just a year.

“I couldn’t even walk three miles last year,” Beltran said. “Now, I’m going to run 26. I did the New Jersey Marathon this year and I finished it. It’s amazing what the mind can do when you put your mind to it.”

Now, nothing will stop the determination of Beltran.

“I’m doing a sprint triathlon in Atlantic City Sept. 15 and I’ve already volunteered to compete in this triathlon next year,” Beltran said. “I’m in it. This is what I do.”

“Overexposure’ gets man ‘burned’

By Jeff Bahr

While patrolling Belmont Ave. on July 31, Belleville Police officers were flagged down by a “visibly upset” woman who told them that a man, sitting in a car at Steven Crane Village, had just “exposed himself” in front of her. The woman explained that she could “see the man sitting in the driver’s seat with his penis exposed.” She also stated that she had recorded the incident on her cell phone before the man fled. The woman then escorted police back to the scene where, lo and behold, the vehicle drove by. After the victim made a positive identification of the man at the wheel, Frank J. Raimo, 55, of Bloomfield, was stopped by police at Washington Ave. and Cross St. and arrested for lewdness. He was later released.

In other Belleville Police happenings:

July 30

• A theft was reported at Lukoil, 389 Franklin Ave., at 6:51 p.m. The victim stated that, after picking up a friend, she stopped off at the gas station and walked inside. When she returned, her cell phone was missing and her friend was nowhere to be found. The suspect is described as Hispanic. He was last seen wearing a white T-shirt, black shorts and a green baseball cap. The missing iPhone is valued at $600.

• A burglary and theft was reported at 263 Fairway Ave. at 8:45 a.m. The victim claimed that he heard a noise in the middle of the night. Thinking it was his son, he went back to sleep. The man later discovered that $200 was missing from his wife’s handbag. There were no signs of forced entry. Police are investigating.

• Police were detailed to headquarters at 1:37 p.m. to talk to a man about a case of criminal mischief. The man, a supervisor for Comcast cable, stated that somewhere between midnight and 2 a.m. on July 26, several coaxial cables and phone lines had been cut along Celia Terrace. He also reported a similar occurrence at N. 8th St. Police are investigating.

July 29

• At 2:05 p.m., officers patrolling near 22 Lake St. observed a man riding a bicycle who appeared to be peering into parked cars. After watching him pull over to look inside one of the vehicles, officers stopped the man. As they did, police said he attempted to hide four glassine envelopes of suspected heroin behind his back. Jorge Rivera, 48, of Newark, was charged with possession of C.D.S. and later released.

July 27

• A burglary and theft was reported at 97 Continental Ave. at 8:57 a.m. The victim told police that she heard her door alarm chime four times while she was outside tending to her pool. Since this had occurred in the past as a result of wind moving the door, she wasn’t overly concerned. Later, however, she noticed that $262 in cash was missing from her purse which had been left in her kitchen. She also discovered that an additional $940 in cash and checks was missing from the purse. Police are investigating.

• A car was reported stolen from Columbus St. at 9:40 a.m. The victim said that she had parked her 2009 Cadillac in front of 14 Columbus St. at 7 a.m. When she returned at 8:30 a.m., the car was gone. Police are investigating.

• While patrolling the Washington Ave. area, officers said they observed a speeding vehicle that was making multiple lane changes. After stopping the vehicle at Washington Ave. and Van Houton St. at 10:35 p.m., police said they uncovered a large bag of suspected marijuana in the vehicle. Daniel Slamiak, 28, of Passaic was charged with possession of marijuana and issued a motor vehicle sum-

How to get 72 (t) relief


By Randy Neumann

In these days of layoffs, downsizing, corporate packages and unemployment at historic highs, there are a lot of wounds and little salve. Well, 72(t) might be the balm.

Many people are finding themselves left with little else than the money in their retirement plans. They are reluctant to withdraw money from these plans because, with today’s markets, they have appreciable losses. Further, section 72(t) of the Internal Revenue Code provides that if you withdraw money from a qualified plan and you are under the age 59 1/2, you are subject to a 10% penalty in addition to having to pay tax on any withdrawal. You could be looking at a 40% haircut on the money you withdraw from your retirement plan.

You may be thinking, “This sounds more like a bomb than balm.” That is because within the same section of the Internal Revenue Code, Uncle Sam taketh away and then he giveth. Here it is, right from the horse’s mouth. “Section 72(t)(1) provides that an additional tax of 10% will be imposed on the amount includible in income with respect to a distribution from a qualified retirement plan as defined in section 4974(c). Various exceptions to this tax are set forth in section 72(t)(2).”

“Section 72(t)(2)(A)(iv) provides, in part, that if distributions are part of a series of substantially equal periodic payments (not less frequently than annually) made for the life (or life expectancy) of the employee, or the joint lives (or joint life expectancy) of the employee and beneficiary, the tax described in section 72(t)(1) will not be applicable.”

This means that there are ways to take money out of qualified plans prior to age 59 1/2 without paying the 10% penalty. The key is you have to know how to do it.

Under Section 72(t) of the tax code, you can make penalty-free withdrawals from your IRAs as long as you take “substantially equal periodic payments” (SEPP) at least annually, and for at least five years or until you turn 59 1/2 —whichever is longer. Notice the acronym IRA in this paragraph. This assumes that you have rolled over your pension, profit sharing, 401(k), 403(b) or 457 plan into an Individual Retirement Account (IRA). So, step one is to roll these other qualified plans into IRAs.

The next step is to decide which of the three methods available to calculate the SEPP is best for you. They are required minimum distribution (RMD), fixed amortization or fixed annuitization. The RMD method applies the same math that is used when IRA owners turn 70 1/2. Each year, the owner uses a divisor based on his (and perhaps his beneficiary’s) age to determine how much should be withdrawn. This method will cause the required amount to vary from year to year.

The fixed amortization method calculates the amount based on the single or joint life expectancy tables in IRS Publication 590, along with the applicable federal rate. Once the initial calculation is made, the amount will remain the same each year.

The fixed annuitization method, when distributed over the IRA owner’s life expectancy, is based on the present value of the IRA. It is also a fixed payment, determined in part by the applicable federal interest rate. IRA owners choosing the fixed amortization or RMD methods must also decide which one of three life expectancy tables (located in IRS Publication 590) they will use to further determine the withdrawal amount.

This is pretty heavy lifting, so don’t make these calculations yourself. Let’s say that your advisor comes up with a number that is too “high” for you. Assume that you have a $700,000 IRA, and each of the three calculations generates more money than you need annually. Not to worry, you can get the “right” number by splitting the $700,000 between 2 IRAs. For example, you make the IRA from which the withdrawal will be taken $500,000 and the other IRA $200,000.

Since we don’t know what the future holds, let’s keep our options open. As mentioned above, you must continue distributions for at least 5 years or until you reach age 59 1/2. Let’s say that some unforeseen need arises and you need to withdraw additional money. If you take one nickel more than the projected annual amount from the withdrawal IRA, all this work has been for naught. You will have to pay a 10% penalty on all prior payments. This is another reason to split the IRAs. If you need extra money, take it out of the other IRA, the one that does not have annual withdrawals and pay the 10 percent penalty only on any additional money withdrawn from it.

This is not an “off the rack” suit. This is a custom made suit that requires an expert tailor.

The opinions voiced in this material are for general information only and are not intended to provide specific advice or recommendations for the individual. Randy Neumann, CFP® is a registered representative with and securities and insurance offered through LPL Financial. Member FINRA/ SIPC. He can be reached at 600 East Crescent Avenue, Suite 104, Upper Saddle River, NJ 07458, 201-291-9000.


George W. Mathers

George W. Mathers of Kearny died on Aug. 4 at his home. He was 91.

A funeral Mass will be held on Wednesday, Aug. 8, at 9:30 a.m. in St. Stephens Church, Kearny, followed by interment in Gate of Heaven Cemetery, East Hanover. To leave an online condolence .please visit www.armitagewiggins.com

George served in The Army during World War II. He was a member of the Benstead Center Seniors and was an accomplished musician. He was past president and a member of the Essex County Musicians Union. He was a retired Relay Technician from Westinghouse.

Husband of the late Florence (Sroka), he was the father of Alice M. Zeller, Linda Santiago, George Mather and the late Marilyn Mather; brother of the late Harry A. Mather and Helen Aumack. He is also survived by six grand and five great-grandchildren. He was predeceased by his granddaughter Claire “bear.”

In lieu of flowers please consider a donation to The D.A.V.

Laura McKay

Laura McKay (Everetts) 57, died on Saturday, July 28, at her home in Seaside Park.

Arrangements were by the Thiele-Reid Family Funeral Home, 585 Belgrove Drive, Kearny, followed by a private cremation. Condolences and memories may be shared at www.thiele-reid.com

Laura was born in Newark. She lived in Kearny for 35 years before moving to Seaside Park eight months ago.

She is survived by her husband Francis; daughters Nicole McKay and Ashley McKay; her siblings Dean Everetts, Karen D’Alessandro, Veronica Zeichner; grandchildren Tyler McKay and Gia DeAquino. Laura also leaves behind her parents Gene and Theresa (Hughes) D’Alessandro.

In lieu of flowers, the family suggests contributions to the ASPCA at www.aspca.org.

Carmen Ruiz

Carmen Ruiz of Springfield died at Overlook Hospital in Summit on Wednesday, Aug. 1. She was 50. Born in Medellin, Colombia, she came to the U.S. when she was 7, was raised in Sunnyside, Queens, N.Y., and lived in Springfield for the past 20 years.

Carmen is survived by her husband Paul Polukord; children, Justin and Ashley of Springfield; mother Celina Ruiz of Queens, N.Y.; sister, Beatriz Ruiz of Queens, NY, and brother, Carlos Ruiz of Pendergrass, Ga. She is also survived by many nieces, nephews, friends and her loving pets.

Carmen was a passionate, loving mother and loving friend of many. Graduate of Baruch College in N.Y., she was a financial analyst for GlaxoSmithKlein in Parsippany for 24 years. She also volunteered her time at Children’s Specialized Hospital in Mountainside and at the St. Claire’s Home for Children in Newark.

A funeral Mass was held on Aug. 6, at St. James Church, Springfield. Arrangements were by Bradley, Smith & Smith Funeral Home, 415 Morris Ave., Springfield. In lieu of flowers, donations in her memory may be made to the Children’s Specialized Hospital Foundation, 150 New Providence Road, Mountainside, N.J. 07092. To send condolences or for further information, go to www.bradleyfuneralhomes.com

Estelle Rydberg

Estelle Hope Rydberg (Schaaf), 94, passed on Monday, July 30, in the Andover Subacute and Rehab Center in Andover.

Arrangements were by the Thiele-Reid Family Funeral Home, 585 Belgrove Drive, Kearny, followed by interment in Arlington Cemetery, Kearny. Condolences and memories may be shared at www.thiele-reid.com

Estelle was born in Kearny and resided there until moving to Newton in 2008. She was a member of the Home League of the Salvation Army in Kearny.

She is survived by her nieces, grand-nieces and grand-nephews and was predeceased by her parents Herbert and Mable (LeVan) Schaaf and later by her husband Albert in 1990.

In lieu of flowers, the family suggests contributions to the Salvation Army of Greater Kearny, 443 Chestnut St., Kearny, NJ 07032 or to Domestic Abused and Sexual Assault Intervention Services, P.O. Box 805 Newton, N.J. 07860.

Bernadette Tietjen

Bernadette Tietjen died on Aug. 4 at Clara Maass Medical Center. She was 62. Born in Newark, she lived in Harrison before moving to Kearny 20 years ago.

A funeral Mass will be held on Wednesday, Aug. 8, at 10:30 a.m. in St. Stephens Church, Kearny, followed by interment in Hillside Cemetery, Lyndhurst. To leave an online condolence, please visit www.armitagewiggins.com

Bernadette is survived by her mother Helen Wieczenski; her children Heather Crist and Jason (and Sheetal) Davitt; her brothers and sister Michael and Tommy Wieczenski and Andrea Kustosz. Also surviving are her grandchildren Alexis, Madison, Jonathan, Aanya and Saheli. Bernadette’s husband Dave Tietjen died only eight months ago.