Salem

Peabody sweeps league track meet

ITEM PHOTO BY KATIE MORRISON
Saugus’ Kiley Ronan is just about to nail a landing in the long jump during the Northeastern Conference meet Saturday at Peabody High.

By KATIE MORRISON

PEABODY — The Peabody boys and girls track teams continued their dominance in the Northeastern Conference, as they both won the NEC league meet Saturday on their home turf at Peabody High.

On the boys side, it wasn’t close, as the Tanners topped second-place finisher Somerville, 160-104. Salem finished third (31) and Classical fourth (30). The girls meet was a closer affair, with Peabody beating out Gloucester, 105-86. Beverly finished third (83) ahead of Saugus (42).

In the 100-meter dash, Peabody’s Amanda Andrews (12.74 seconds) barely topped Saugus’ Haley Dennis (12.8) in a photo-finish type of race. Andrews added another win to her resume in the 200, again barely sneaking by a Sachem; this time it was Kiley Ronan, who ran a 27.1. In the 800, Gloucester’s Carly Curcuru grabbed first (2:22.3), but it was a close battle for second between Peabody’s Sophia Anderle (2:26.0) and Winthrop’s Heidy Benson (2:26.3).

Anderle logged a win in the 400 hurdles (1:07.4), topping Salem’s Danielle Stotts (1:07.6) and English’s Elizabeth Rozon (1:09.2).

In the field events, Gloucester’s Sierra Rudolph was a triple-winner, clearing five feet, six inches to win the high jump. Beverly’s Tyler Orlandella, Peabody’s Alexa Flewelling and Saugus’ Gianna Filaretos all cleared 5-0. Rudolph also won the long jump (17-1 1/4), topping Marblehead’s Gabriella Marks (16-6 1/4) and English’s Hannah Trahant (16-4 3/4). Finally, Rudolph took first in the triple jump (35-7).

Beverly’s Gracie Sparkman (36-6) edged Swampscott’s Maisie Vasquez (35-5 1/4) in the shot put, and came in second to Peabody’s Nene Onwuogu (102-3) in the discus. Revere’s Samantha Myrtil (115-6) had a good showing in the javelin, topping Tanner Emily Baclear (105-5).

Other winners included Beverly’s India Ingemi in the 400 (58.78), Gloucester’s Eve Feuerhach in the mile (5:25.2), Gloucester’s Holly Fossa in the 2-miles (12:02.8) and Beverly’s Tyler Orlandella in the 100 hurdles (16.18).

In the relays, the Saugus team took the 4×100 race (50.92), Gloucester won the 4×400 (4:16.2) and Beverly won the 4×800 (10:31.8).

For the boys, Classical’s Gilley Kabamba won the mile (4:35.9), topping Peabody’s Claudio Rocha (4:36.0) by one-tenth of a second in one of the best races of the day.

Somerville’s Elijah Jeffreys (11.21) topped English’s Juan Avelino (11.51) in the 100. Shaq Joseph logged another win for Somerville in the 200 (22.91), topping Danvers’ Anthony Spignese (23.35), Classical’s Emmanuel Kalambayi (23.76) and English’s Prince Brown (24.25).

Peabody’s Marc Alperen won the 800 (2:02.1) and the Tanners took the took two spots in the 2-miles (Shane Braz, 10:01.9 and Joe Farhat, 10:27.4). Peabody’s Moisse Irizarry won the 110 hurdles (15.46) and the 400 hurdles (57.64). Irizarry (6-0) also finished second to Somerville’s Phillips Magre (6-2) in the high jump. Avelino finished fourth (5-10). Patrick Pang logged another Tanner win in the shot put (48-11 1/2). Peabody’s Connor Ramos (139-8) topped English’s Samuel Adewale (134-4) in the discus. Swampscott’s Alex Sheehan won the javelin (158-10).

Other winners included Somerville’s Magre in the 400 (49.91), Somerville in the 4×100 relay (44.56) and 4×400 relay (3:28.0), Peabody in the 4×800 relay (8:51.1).

 

Roundup: Dove sets Swampscott lacrosse scoring mark

FILE PHOTO
Swampscott’s Andrew Dove, right, set a career scoring record in the Big Blue’s win over Salem Saturday.

By KATIE MORRISON

 

Local high school lacrosse records continue to fall. A day after Lauren Wolff broke the all-time girls lacrosse scoring record at Peabody High, it was Swampscott’s Andrew Dove’s turn to make history.

The senior scored five goals and logged two assists to record his 208th point, breaking the Big Blue school record in their 19-9 win over Salem at Bertram Field Saturday.

BASEBALL

St. Mary’s 2, Masconomet 1

St. Mary’s 5, Lowell Catholic 0

Solid pitching paced the Spartans to a pair of wins this weekend.

On Saturday, Lou Vidal tossed a complete-game shutout in the 5-0 win over Lowell Catholic. Vidal allowed two hits and two walks with one strikeout.

Lee Pacheco made a handful of nice defensive plays at shortstop, and hit an RBI-single. Ryan Turenne hit a 2-RBI double and Kyle Ouellette added an RBI-single. Bobby Alcock plated the fifth run for the Spartans on a fielders’ choice.

On Sunday, Alcock tossed seven innings and allowed just one run on six hits and two walks. He fanned eight Masconomet batters in the 2-1 win. “Another outstanding effort by Bobby,” Spartans coach Derek Dana said. “He gives us a chance to win every time he’s on the mound. He got stronger as the game wore on.” Josh Mateo brought home Aedan Leydon to tie the game at 1-1 in the bottom of the third inning. The Spartans scored the winning run in the sixth with a two-out rally sparked by seniors Tyler Donovan and Jack Ward. Donovan walked and pinch-runner Connor Donahue scored on an RBI-double off Ward’s bat. “It was nice for those two seniors, Jack and Tyler, to get it done with two outs and bring in the go-ahead run,” Dana said. St. Mary’s improves to 12-6 with the two wins and hosts St. John’s Prep on Tuesday night.

“We still need to hit better but the pitching and defense has been outstanding,” Dana said. “The kids are staying with it and looking to build some momentum going into the Clancy Tournament and the state tournament.”

Fenwick 6, Swampscott 2

Sean Lahrizi went 2-for-4 for the Big Blue and Will Salisbury added a hit and drove in two runs in the loss. David Peterson (1-for-3) went the distance and got the loss on the mound, allowing five earned runs on 10 hits while walking two and striking out four.

SOFTBALL

Arlington 14, Saugus 2

The Sachems fell on the road Saturday, and are looking for two wins in their final four games to clinch a tournament berth.

Winthrop 11, Matignon 4

Vikings junior Jaidon Brown allowed five hits in a complete-game victory as Winthrop improved to 6-10.

Woburn 9, Swampscott 1

The Big Blue managed just two hits against a tough Woburn team.

GIRLS LACROSSE

St. Mary’s 11, Salem 8

At Manning Field, Brittany McPherson had a strong game in net for the 12-5 Spartans.

Maddie Hentosh and Codi Butt led the way from mid field. Liz Weiss had four goals, as did Butt, along with three assists.

Hentosh also scored two goals, and Meghan Parthum scored one.

“It wasn’t our best game, but we pulled out the W,” said Spartan coach K.C. Butt. “Brittany had an awesome game. She is a true leader.”


Peabody 12, Gloucester 4

Lauren Wolff led the way with six points and Colleen Crotty added five points as the Tanners improved to 15-2. Chloe Gizzi (3 points), Sarah Buckley (3 points) and Olivia Kiricoples (2 points) also contributed offensively. On defense, Alyssa Shashaty, Catherine Manning, Kelly Crotty and Carla Patania played well, and goalie Gianna Denisco made 12 saves.

TRACK

Catholic Central League Meet

St. Mary’s James Brumfield was named the CCL MVP, winning the 100-meter hurdles, high jump and 100-meter dash. The Spartan boys finished fourth and girls finished fifth.

Catholic Conference League Meet

St. John’s Prep’s Andrew Coutu won the 400 (51.18 seconds), Tristan Shelgren won the mile (4:27.80) and Nik Reardon won the high jump (6 feet, 4 inches) in the Catholic Conference meet..

 

Hebb, Doughty expected to be arraigned

ITEM FILE PHOTOS
Michael Hebb, left, and Wes Doughty are accused in connection with the killing of a Peabody couple.

SALEM Two men facing charges in connection with the February killing of a Peabody couple are scheduled to be arraigned Monday in Salem Superior Court.

Wes Doughty, 39, will be arraigned on two counts of murder and rape, attempted arson, carjacking, kidnapping, and assault and battery with a dangerous weapon.

Co-defendant, Michael Hebb, 45, will also be arraigned on two counts of accessory after the fact and one count of attempted arson.

The bodies of Mark Greenlaw, 37, and fiancee Jennifer O’Connor, 40, were found in the basement of a Farm Avenue home on Feb. 18. Greenlaw had been shot in the head and O’Connor was stabbed in her neck and torso.

Brothers face murder for fatal brick attack

In addition to being accused of killing the couple, Doughty allegedly raped O’Connor, took steps to set the Farm Avenue house on fire, and carjacked Kenneth Metz, 64, in Middleton days later while on the run, according to law enforcement officials.

Police in South Carolina arrested Doughty on Feb. 24 after questioning him for panhandling. Investigators discovered he was wanted for the Peabody double homicide in Peabody and the carjacking.

Hebb was indicted for two counts of accessory after the fact and one count of attempted arson. Murder charges he was arraigned on Feb. 21 in Peabody District Court have been dismissed.

 

North Shore Comic Con on Saturday

By MATT DEMIRS

LYNN The Lynn Museum/LynnArts will host the North Shore Comic Con on Saturday.

Carolyn Cole, director of the Downtown Lynn Cultural District, conceived the idea after being inspired by the work from Massachusetts illustrator and comic Brandon Gorski during a Raw Art Works event.

Gorski, who has worked closely with Cole to organize the convention, said comics are becoming more popular.

“Comic books are no longer a closeted thing,” Gorski said. “Now even more people are getting into comic books because people are being exposed to the genre in new ways.”

In the 1980s, Lynn had a thriving comic book scene, when four comic book stores served the city. Tim Coles, owner of a comic bookstore in Lynn, Cole’s Comics, agrees with Gorski. He said there has been attraction to his store the only one in Lynn and comic books in general over the past 10 years.

“I believe that movies and TV shows have helped stimulate the activity,” he said.

Coles said is too early to tell if the comic con event downtown will increase sales.

“Because it is a new event, I am unsure of what will come about,” he said.

ADL continues to push for change

The event is funded by the Economic Development Industrial Corp., the city’s development bank, through the Community Development Block Grant program.

Carolyn Cole says she is excited about the event.

“We want to make people feel welcome and show them what we have, while giving the community and kids access to the art and culture that Lynn has,” she said.

There are 14 vendors, including Gorski, who are scheduled to have tables at the event.

“We are bringing people from places like Danvers, Malden, Beverly, Salem and more,” Gorski said. “You don’t ever see artists coming to Lynn to do things like this showcase and that’s what we are trying to change.”

The work will be diverse including Camden Ballard, whose hand-sculpted masks are used in horror movies. Bailey Bollen from “The Droid You Are Looking For Baked Goods,” will give away R2-D2 cupcakes.

Cole hopes to put Lynn on the map in the world of comics. The largest comic con event in the nation takes place in San Diego. Boston has a strong showing every year for their comic con convention, but Cole said the cost for artists to feature their work in the show is high.

One of the most exciting parts of the night, Cole said, will be the unveiling of the unnamed Lynn resident who was written into Elliot S. Maggin’s comic as Superman’s friend and psychiatrist.

Admission to the event is free. It will be held from 11 a.m. to 6 p.m. at in the LynnArts on Exchange Street. Kids and students get in for free. All activities like DIY superhero costume making and fantasy face painting will be free. DJ Vanilla Rice, a Cambodian Lynn rapper who used to run the music program at the Lynn YMCA, will entertain. There will also be raffle prizes from the Bent Water Brewing Co., White Rose Coffeehouse, and others.

 

 

Danvers sneaks past Saugus in continuation

ITEM PHOTO BY OWEN O’ROURKE
John Torres slides safely into third base in the 10th inning. 

By MIKE ALONGI 

SAUGUS — It may have taken 12 innings and a full week to finish, but the Danvers baseball team finally came up with a timely hit to sneak past Saugus, 2-1, in a tightly contested matchup at World Series Park Tuesday afternoon.

The game was a continuation from May 9 and went nine innings with the score tied 1-1 before it was postponed due to darkness.

“It was big to finally get a key hit,” said Danvers coach Roger Day. “We had so many chances in the nine-inning game last week and then more chances today, so we needed to capitalize on one of them.”

The big hit came from centerfielder Jordan DeDonato, who smacked a line-drive RBI double with two outs to left field to give Danvers the lead in the top of the 12th. The inning started off with Tommy Mento reaching on an error before Matt Andreas moved him over with a bunt and Zach Dillon struck out. Then, with two outs, DeDonato worked a full count before lining a ball down the line in left to bring in Mento.

“Luckily for us we were able to get a big two-out hit, which we haven’t had many of this year, so that was great,” said Day. “We had to move guys to second to give ourselves some chances, and we were able to make some big plays when we had to on both sides of the ball.”

The win didn’t come without a fight, as both teams moved at least one runner to third base in the 10th, 11th and 12th innings. The Falcons came out and got runners to second and third with two outs in the 10th, but Saugus pitcher Todd Tringale worked out of the inning by forcing a groundout. Saugus then moved runners to first and third with two outs in the bottom of the 10th before Danvers pitcher Dean Borders notched a strikeout to escape.

Danvers once again got a runner to third with two outs in the 11th, but the Sachems escaped unscathed after Tringale made an impressive barehanded play on a comebacker to the mound and the score remained at 1-1.

Saugus’ best chance for a win came in the bottom of the 11th, when a walk to Steve Ruggiero and an infield single by Justin Horvath put runners on first and second with no outs. The rally was slowed when Borders picked the runner off second, but a walk to the next batter and then a passed ball placed runners on second and third with two outs. Then, after throwing one pitch to Saugus second baseman Mike Mabee, Borders was forced to leave the game with an injury, forcing Justin Roberto into the game. Roberto responded with a big strikeout to get Danvers out of the jam.

The Sachems had one more chance to get that elusive tying run in the bottom of the 12th, moving runners to first and second with two outs, but Roberto worked his way out of the jam once again to give the Falcons the win.

Danvers (13-2) takes on Swampscott tonight.

For Saugus (6-8), the mantra is clear: win four of the next six and get into the tournament. It won’t be easy though, as the Sachems will play four more games over the next five days.

“We just have to get into the tournament,” said Saugus coach Joe Luis. “All we can do here is take this as a learning experience and keep pushing. We’ve got a tough stretch coming up here and pitching will be key, but we’ve just got to take it one game at a time.”

Saugus will play against Salem this afternoon.

NSMC, nonprofit join to help overdose victims

LYNN A local nonprofit is teaming with North Shore Medical Center to provide recovery coaches for every person treated for an overdose in Union Hospital’s emergency room.

Bridgewell, a Peabody-based nonprofit with extensive experience in providing treatment and housing for people recovering from substance use disorders, now offers 24/7 emergency response services by trained recovery coaches. All recovery coaches have personally overcome their own addictions and can relate firsthand to those struggling after an overdose, according to a press release from North Shore Medical Center. NSMC, which operates emergency rooms in Salem and Lynn, is the largest medical provider on the North Shore.

“We know from our experience that individuals with substance use disorders respond to recovery coaches who understand their experience and can provide unconditional support and guidance,” said Mark Kennard, director of community services at Bridgewell.

As a society, Kennard said we can no longer enable overdose victims to simply walk out of the emergency room without any support.

“We feel fortunate to partner with Bridgewell in this challenging work, and believe that the experience and dedication of the coaches will enhance the lives of our patients in ways that complement the expertise and efforts of our Emergency Department staff,” said Jane Clarke, R.N. and executive director of emergency services at NSMC.

Work continues for Market Basket access

The recovery coach program at NSMC began in late March and has already assisted more than 20 people and their family members, including some who entered recovery programs as a direct result of this intervention in the emergency room. According to police records, a total of 439 opioid-related overdoses occurred in Lynn last year, an increase from 349 in 2015.

As part of this program, Bridgewell has hired six recovery coaches who are available to NSMC Union Hospital staff to call as soon as an overdose case appears at the hospital.

Once contacted by NSMC, the coaches come to the hospital right away to establish a relationship with the overdose patient and begin discussions about options for treatment. All recovery coaches have completed a newly implemented state certification and training process.

While initially available only in Lynn, the hope is to expand the recovery coach program to Salem Hospital later this year.

Lynn man indicted in trafficking scheme

SALEM  A Lynn man was indicted Wednesday in connection with allegedly trafficking more than a kilogram of cocaine as part of an operation that brought drugs from Mexico and the Dominican Republic into Massachusetts and Rhode Island.

Euclides A. Lopez, 51, was indicted by an Essex County grand jury on charges of trafficking more than 200 grams of cocaine and conspiracy to violate the Controlled Substances Act, according to a news release from state Attorney General Maura Healey’s office.

Law enforcement officials seized in December more than a kilogram of cocaine, $10,810 in cash, jewelry, and a scale to measure cocaine from Lopez’s Lynn apartment.

North Shore gets money for road repairs

His arrest was part of a larger operation by state police assigned to the attorney general’s office and the New England Division of the Drug Enforcement Agency with the help of the Lynn Police Department.

On Dec. 13, Lopez was one of 20 people arrested.

In all, authorities seized more than $500,000 in cash, luxury vehicles, firearms, cocaine, and heroin.

The investigation is ongoing.

Getting a jump on jobs at Lynn Tech

ITEM PHOTO BY OWEN O’ROURKE
Carmen Arins, Lizabeth Acevedo and Yuleidy Pimenetel gather information about the Gregg Neighborhood House.

By THOMAS GRILLO

LYNN — Emily Blaney won’t graduate high school until next year, but the 16-year-old already has a career plan.

“I work with special ed kids and I’ve noticed I’m very good at comforting them,” she said. “I’ve decided to be a kindergarten teacher or open a daycare center.”

The Lynn Vocational Technical Institute junior spoke with representatives from the region’s colleges Thursday at the school’s Career Fair about furthering her education. Tech offers a childcare program that provides her with hands-on classroom training with kids.

Blaney was one of more than 100 students who packed the school’s lobby to talk with recruiters from schools, companies, retailers, hospitals, nonprofits, the military and city departments, including police and fire.

School Superintendent Dr. Catherine Latham said she was wowed by the number of employers gathered to consider Tech graduates.

“It’s so wonderful for our students to have such a diverse collection of opportunities all in one place,” she said. “Many of these organizations have taken on our students as part of the district’s co-op program.”

Amado and Cristian Roman, 17-year-old twins, said they are seeking opportunities to do an internship at a newspaper where they can use their video production skills.

“I already have lots of hands-on experience recording and editing videos,” said Amado. “I think I have a lot to offer a newspaper.”

Students get a taste of the Real World

His brother, Cristian, said they are considering programs at Emerson College and Fitchburg State University to enhance their skills.

Mary Zwiercan, human resources director at the North Shore Medical Center (NSMC), one of two dozen employers who had a booth at the fair, said the Salem-based hospital has more than 200 jobs available from cafeteria workers, security, radiation technicians and nurses.

“We have an aging workforce and we are hiring, that’s why I’m here,” she said.  

NSCM operates a co-op program at Tech in health sciences where juniors can earn their certified nursing assistant certification. Seniors can enroll in the co-op program which puts students in healthcare settings every other week for 30 hours at $12 per hour.

“They are my future certified nursing assistants and maybe future nurses and doctors,” Zwiercan said.  

Christopher Menjivar said he’s not sure what he’ll do following graduation next year. For now, the 17-year-old junior is founder of Eagles Handyman & Construction Co., a seven-person firm that does home remodeling.

“I’m considering UMass-Boston,” he said. “All things are possible.”


Thomas Grillo can be reached at tgrillo@itemlive.com.

 

Lynn man sideswipes 3 cars, police say

ITEM PHOTO BY THOR JOURGENSEN
The driver of a Chevrolet Malibu with a missing tire was arrested.

By THOR JOURGENSEN

LYNN — A Lynn man is headed to court after police said he sideswiped three cars on Western Avenue Monday morning and hit a fence before officers arrested him on Tracy Avenue.

The incident began at 8:19 a.m. as Salem resident Erin Silva drove down Western Avenue from her Salem home on her way to work. She said the driver of a Chevrolet Malibu sideswiped her car and sped up as he passed her.

“He started speeding. I tried to follow him. It was like a movie,” Silva said.

She alerted an officer working a police detail on Chatham Street and police stopped Edwin Bravo on Tracy Avenue with the right front tire missing from the Malibu. Police charged Bravo, 28, of Adams Street, with unlicensed operation and four counts of leaving the scene of property damage. He is expected to be arraigned Tuesday in Lynn District Court.

5 arrested for alleged assault, extortion

Harry Ofilos, 74

SALEM Harry Ofilos, 74, of Salem, passed away peacefully at the Kaplan Family Hospice House on May 5, 2017, surrounded by his family after a courageous battle with brain cancer.

Harry is survived by his wife Jeannine (Tache’) Ofilos; eldest son Jonathan Ofilos, his wife Michelle and their two children Julia and Ryan, all of Salem; his son Matthew Ofilos of Reston, Virginia; and daughter Alyssa (Ofilos) Sweeney and her husband Kevin of Salem. Additionally, Harry is survived by his brother Christy Ofilos and his wife Claire of Lynn, his sister Georgia Aucone and her husband Richard of Lynn, his sister-in-law Laura Ofilos of Jamaica Plain, his brother-in-law Kenneth Tache’ of Salem, many loving nieces and nephews, and his close friend and co-worker Carla (Petruccelli) Fay of Revere. Harry was preceded in death by his parents Nicholas and Stella Ofilos, his brother John Ofilos, and his close friend and father-in-law, Henry Tache’.

Harry was born in Lynn and is a graduate of Lynn Classical High School and Massachusetts College of Pharmacy, where he earned his Doctorate of Pharmacy. He served two years in the Army as a Pharmacist and Specialist (E-5) at Ft. Jackson, S.C. during the Vietnam conflict. Upon his return to Massachusetts, he continued his calling as a pharmacist in Winthrop, where, in 1984, he purchased Brown’s Pharmacy, serving the community for 32 years, making many close friends and life-long customers. Harry was known as a selfless, compassionate man who would do anything for his family, friends, and customers. As an entrepreneur and healthcare provider, Harry was trusted throughout the community. Whether you were picking up your medication, or just in for a coffee and donut, you could be sure that Harry would be at Brown’s waiting to greet you.

Sidney Farber once proclaimed: “It has been said the purpose of life is to spend it on something that outlives you. No man finds his ultimate end in himself, but does so by sharing with others.” Harry’s legacy will live on for many years through all of those who were lucky enough to know him and use his life as the standard for compassion and generosity.

Service information: A visitation will be held on May 9, 2017, at the SOLIMINE Funeral Home, 67 Ocean Street, Lynn, MA, from 4 – 8 p.m. A funeral service will be held on May 10, 2017, at St. George Greek Orthodox Church, 54 South Common St, Lynn, MA at 11 a.m. with burial to follow at the Greenlawn Cemetery in Salem.

Throughout the year there were many special individuals and charities that supported Harry and his family. Please consider donations to the Survivors by the Sea organization Survivorsbythesea.org or The Adult Brain Tumor Research Fund, c/o Patrick Wen M.D., Dana Farber Cancer Institute, 450 Brookline Ave, Boston, MA 02215.

The family wishes to extend our sincere thanks to the amazing doctors, nurses and caregivers at Brigham and Women’s Hospital, Dana Farber Cancer Institute, Beverly Hospital, the Kaplan Family Hospice House and the many home health aids who helped throughout the year. For directions and guestbook please visit Solimine.com.

Anthony James Davis

SALEMAnthony James Davis, of Salem, formerly of Lynn and Swampscott, died Thursday, May 4, 2017, unexpectedly at North Shore Medical Center, Salem Hospital.

He is the husband of Elizabeth(Wilson) Davis. He was born in Lynn the son of Karen J. Worth of Ipswich and Jessie Davis of Swampscott. He was raised in Lynn and Swampscott and attended Swampscott Schools.

Tony also known as “Big Tizzle” loved his family and friends unconditionally. He enjoyed life to the fullest. He loved learning new things and helping others. He loved spending time with his son and hiking with family and friends. He loved music and singing. He was a loving and attentive husband and shared her altruistic philosophy on life.

In addition to his wife he is survived by his son Anthony John Davis of Ipswich, his stepdaughter Taylor Jackson of Salem, his Mother, Karen J. Worth of Ipswich, his Father and Stepmother, Jessie and Deborah Davis of Swampscott his maternal grandparents, Arlene and John Worth, his paternal grandparents, Barbara Davis and the late Jesse Davis. He leaves his brothers and sisters, Jayna and Nicholas Davis of Ipswich, Ethan Davis of Swampscott, and Sara -Rose Sauerborn of Swampscott. He also leaves his aunts and uncles John Worth of Lynn, Cheryl Mario and her husband Louis of Peabody, John Davis and his wife Bernice of Lynn Joseph Davis and his wife Kathy of Lynn Michael Davis and his wife Susan of Salem, Barbara Paramataris and her husband John of Lynn, Mary Davis of Lynn, Katie Davis and Christina Davis both of Maine and the late James Davis and late Dan Anderson. Anthony also leaves many cousins and countless friends.

Service information: His funeral will be held on Thursday May 11, 2017 at 11 a.m. in the SOLIMINE Funeral Home, 426 Broadway (Rte 129) Lynn. Visiting hours are on Wednesday, May 10, 2017 from 4-8 p.m. Relatives and friends are respectfully invited. In lieu of flowers donations may be made in his memory to Project Cope 66 Silsbee Street, Lynn, Massachusetts 01902. Directions and guestbook at Solimine.com.

 

Strong offensive showing paces Revere past Lynn

FILE PHOTO
Jack Stafford scored two goals for the Jets. 

By MIKE ALONGI

REVERE — Despite giving up a goal just 10 seconds into the game, the Revere boys lacrosse team got it together quickly and took down the Lynn Jets, 18-6, in a Northeastern Conference matchup at Harry Della Russo Stadium on Thursday afternoon.

Sophomore Eric Bua led the way with six goals and one assist for the Patriots, while senior Anthony DeStefano had three goals and two assists. Senior captain Ed Sullivan and sophomore Rick Briana each had two goals and two assists, sophomore Nick Sujko had two goals and sophomore Matt Stasio had one goal and one assist. Senior captain Dan Muller had one goal and senior Wes Spagnuolo had one assist.

“We played really well out there today, especially in the second half,” said Revere coach Austin Powers. “We had a bit of a slow start there, but we were able to pick it up and move the ball better, play good defense and help our goalie out.”

For the Jets, Ryan Clark had three goals and one assist, Jack Stafford had two goals and Shidley Belice had one goal. Chandler Donavan had one assist.

“We had some good stretches on offense today early on, but we just couldn’t keep stringing them together,” said Jets coach Peter Pappagianopoulos. “We’ve just got to keep working on getting better in that area.”

Lynn got on the board first, right off the opening faceoff. Belice won the draw and bolted up the field, weaved through some defenders and fired it home to give the Jets a 1-0 lead. But that only kicked Revere into high gear, as the Patriots went on to score six unanswered goals before Lynn stopped the bleeding.

It started with a goal off the ensuing faceoff. Bua won the draw and did the same thing as Belice, weaving through defenders and firing it home. He scored again less than 20 seconds later, then assisted on DeStefano’s first goal to make it 3-1. Briana, Bua and Sujko all tallied goals before the Jets got a goal from Stafford on the man-advantage with 2:28 to go in the first to make it 6-2.

“Usually when we start out slow like that it doesn’t end well for us, so this feels good,” Powers said of the early turnaround. “When we fall behind early like that it’s tough for us to come back, so those early goals to take that lead were huge.”

Clark made it 6-3 with a goal less than 30 seconds into the second, but Revere answered back with goals from Briana and DeStefano to stretch the deficit back to five goals. Clark scored again with 4:54 left to make it 8-4, but the Patriots again answered with two straight goals (from Sullivan and Bua) and took a 10-4 lead into halftime.

The second half was much of the same, with Bua scoring to make it 11-4 at the 9:45 mark, then Clark answered with his third goal of the game. But that was as close as Lynn would get, as Revere closed the third quarter on a 4-0 run to take a 10-goal lead into the final frame.

Three more Revere goals in the fourth put the game completely out of reach, and the Patriots cruised to victory.

Revere (11-2, 8-1 NEC) will now have the weekend off to prepare for a road game against Swampscott on Monday. The Big Blue are Revere’s only league loss on the season, having lost 7-6 at home back on April 13.

“It’s definitely a big game for us because it’s our only league loss and we played them really close the last time,” said Powers. “We know they’re a really good team, so we’re going to need to be ready to go.”

The Jets (3-8) play Salem on Monday at Manning Field.

Ifs, ands, and abutters may force trail off Grid

COURTESY PHOTO
Pictured is a plan for the Swampscott rail trail.

By GAYLA CAWLEY

SWAMPSCOTT — National Grid representatives have informed town officials that they will not voluntarily enter into a license with the town for a proposed rail trail within the company’s corridor.

Town Meeting members will be asked to approve a warrant article on May 15 requesting $850,000 for the design and engineering of the trail location within the National Grid corridor, as well as the legal fees and costs for acquisition of the easement rights.

The two-plus mile, 10-foot wide trail would run from the Swampscott Train Station to the Marblehead line at Seaview Avenue, connecting with the Marblehead rail trail, which also links to trails in Salem, officials said.

A recent email from a National Grid representative, Michael Guerin, was sent to Town Administrator Sean Fitzgerald and director of community development Peter Kane in response to Kane’s April 6 email requesting a meeting to discuss the town’s proposed rail trail.

National Grid’s correspondence detailed the company’s concerns with the proposed trail, saying: “National Grid has property rights along the right-of-way proposed to be used for the rail trail.”

Guerin further stated in the email that the company has significant concerns about the opposition from neighbors along the right-of-way, and that National Grid has been contacted repeatedly by abutters and their legal counsel.

“These residents have been very vocal about their opposition to the rail trail and until such time as their objections have been resolved, National Grid does not feel it can voluntarily enter into a license with the town for the proposed trail,” Guerin wrote.

“If, however, the town of Swampscott intends to take the rail trail by eminent domain, then National Grid would meet with you to discuss how to best ensure National Grid’s ability to continue to use and maintain the right-of-way for its electric facilities, so that we can continue to provide safe and reliable service to our customers,” Guerin continued.

Kane said the letter wasn’t surprising and was expected based on past discussions with National Grid. On Tuesday, at a Rail Trail Informational meeting, he said the town had a meeting with National Grid earlier this week.

“Based on the town’s research and discussions with National Grid over the past few years, we knew they wouldn’t be able to provide us a low- or no-cost license for the exact reason they stated in the email,” Kane said in an email. “This is the reason why the Board of Selectmen submitted a warrant article for Town Meeting for funding to instead go through the eminent domain process.

“This email substantiates our statements at the public meetings that the town can’t get a license,” Kane wrote. “This is a standard type of response and we look forward to working with our utility to bring this amenity to the town.”

Kane said $240,000 of the requested Town Meeting funds would be used to hire professionals for design and engineering costs. About $610,000 would be for acquisition of easement rights, where the town would work with the property owners (National Grid and/or other parties) to secure the rights. This may be done through eminent domain, with compensation for owners, or by donation/gift of the land.

The Town Meeting funds would not for be construction of the trail, which would be paid for by donations, grants and private funds, officials said.

Marblehead’s Rosenthal donates $1 million to Northeast Arc

Thomas Palleria, an abutter of the proposed trail, said he owns land that the town may try to take by eminent domain. He said neighbors have been living under the threat of eminent domain for years.

Town Meeting has voted for the creation of the trail on four separate occasions, including three times since 2002, Kane said. In 2009, Town Meeting gave the town the authority to use eminent domain for a recreational easement, but didn’t allocate the funds for that process.

Palleria said he thinks that eminent domain proceedings against National Grid are going to increase the cost of acquiring the easement rights, potentially to an amount much larger than the funds requested at Town Meeting.

He said there are also potential issues with appraised values of land for abutters and legal fees that could push numbers beyond that $850,000 figure.

In addition, Palleria said there’s “no pot of gold at the end of the rainbow,” referring to additional funds needed for construction of the trail, which the town would have to go out and find after the design, engineering and acquisition phase. There’s no guarantee that the rail trail is even feasible, he added.

Other residents at the informational meeting agreed, with one saying that Town Meeting could be voting in $850,000 that could get the town nothing, referring to the trail. Some argued that the warrant article should be split, with Town Meeting only voting to allocate funds for the design and engineering phase, and drop asking for funds for acquisition of easement rights until the first phase was completed.

Kane, through a presentation on Tuesday night, identified grant opportunities that Swampscott could pursue for the trail construction, including the Massachusetts Department of Conservation & Recreation: Recreational Trails Program, Mass State Transportation Improvement Plan, MassDOT Complete Streets, Safe Routes to Schools, and nonprofit grant opportunities such as PeopleForBikes Community Grant Program and The Barr Foundation.

The rail bed, where National Grid power lines run to Marblehead, has been vacant since the 1960s, when the Marblehead railroad branch shut down. It was sold to National Grid’s predecessor.

Town officials meet with National Grid representatives in 2014 and 2015, who were believed to be the sole owners of the easement wanted by the town for the trail. Officials said the town had previously been in discussions to acquire the easement from the company for little to no cost, but it has since been learned that National Grid doesn’t appear to own all of the land. Through a title process, numerous owners have been identified, which could include abutters.

Kane said the utility corridor is made up of 11 parcels of property, which make up a total area of about 500,000 square feet. The rail trail easement would be about 90,000 square feet, or 18 percent. National Grid pays property taxes for all 11 parcels, and paid $57,778 in FY17. Although National Grid pays the property taxes, not all 11 parcels are held in fee simple title by the company, meaning it doesn’t hold clear title on all of them.

Not all residents who spoke on Tuesday were against the trail.

Eric Bachman said one of the reasons he moved to Swampscott 10 years ago was for enticement of the rail trail. He said he imagines it as safer place kids can ride their bikes and as free exercise, or a way people can get out in nature.


Gayla Cawley can be reached at gcawley@itemlive.com. Follow her on Twitter @GaylaCawley.

Summoning up Swampscott’s yesteryears

College graduations and wedding season are around the corner and spring was the time, not so long ago, when Swampscott residents booked a couple of rooms in Cap’n Jack’s for their out-of-town guests.

The quaint waterfront inn with its ocean views has been relegated to town history but Swampscott’s days as a place to visit and stay on the North Shore may not be over. The Planning Board next Monday is reviewing a proposed “Tourist Lodging Overlay District.”

Creating the district, according to a town legal notice, also involves adopting “general regulations for all types of travel and tourist lodging establishments and specific regulations for hotels, motels, inns, and bed and breakfast establishments for a new overlay district in three areas of town.”

Swampscott isn’t in any danger of seeing Humphrey Street or Vinnin Square turn into a Motel Row similar to Route 1 during its heyday. The town has probably permanently consigned to history the glory days of the New Ocean House and other resort hotels that summoned up memories of the Roaring Twenties.

But Cap’n Jack’s occupied a special, nostalgic niche in the minds of town residents who viewed it as a slightly-frayed welcome mat to people visiting from around the country, even the world. With its small-town casual ambience, the bygone inn broadcast a gentle reminder to visitors: “Enjoy Salem and Boston but don’t forget to appreciate Swampscott’s beauty.”

Ifs, ands, and abutters may force trail off Grid

The upcoming Planning Board hearing raises a couple of interesting questions about the value of setting the stage for increased town tourism. Question one: Is there a market for tourism?

There is no question Swampscott is a beautiful place to visit and stay and a North Shore gem. European tourists reportedly make the North Shore a destination in part because of its proximity to Boston and mix of small scenic New England towns and oceanscapes.

The more immediate question focuses on the degree to which town residents have an interest in seeing, much less promoting, an increase in local tourism. The answers to that question can potentially shape how residents and town officials eventually view the tourist district.

If the town decides to put a committed effort into tourism promotion and marketing, those efforts will only commence after debate among residents. That debate could conclude with residents deciding to dedicate a tourist district to bed and breakfast locations that serve as summer or fall weekend destinations or places to put up Uncle George or Cousin Edna when they come to town for a wedding or graduation.

The tourism debate might just end with locals concluding: The old ways are the best ways.

Peter H. Sekenski, 65

SAUGUS — Peter H. Sekenski, 65 years old, passed away on May 1 due to complications after suffering a heart attack.

Born in Salem, a lifelong resident of Saugus, he was the son of the late Paul Sekenski and Frances (Koza) Sekenski. Peter worked most of his life as a commercial lobsterman, spending much of his time at the Saugus River. He was especially known as a loyal friend, avid gardener and party host. He thoroughly enjoyed golfing, having a cold drink and relaxing in his yard with his dog Nelson.

He was the beloved father of Lauren (Sekenski) Fritz and her husband Christopher Fritz of Danvers; grandfather to Macguire. Dear brother of Paul Sekenski of Florida, Susan (Sekenski) Townsend of New Hampshire, and Claudia (Sekenski) Reynolds of New Hampshire. Devoted cousin of John Koza of Connecticut. Loving uncle, cousin and friend to many.

Service Information: A visitation will be held on Thursday 4-8 p.m. in the BISBEE-PORCELLA Funeral Home, 549 Lincoln Ave., Saugus, relatives and friends invited. For directions and condolences BisbeePorcella.com.

On Friday from 6-10 p.m. a celebration of life will be hosted by Peters Family at the Fox Hill Yacht Club, 114 Ballard St., Saugus, all are welcome.

In lieu of cut flowers, Peter’s family would appreciate a unique or special perennial plant that can be planted in Peter’s memory, as a way of remembering his life and love for gardening.

 

Stuff of Legend at Salem State

ITEM PHOTO BY OWEN O’ROURKE
John Legend speaks at Salem State University.

By BILL BROTHERTON

SALEM — John Legend is making a difference in the world. He’s shining a light on social injustice and demanding that all children have a right to a great education and that too many Americans of color are ending up in jail. He’s dined with presidents for heaven’s sake.

So what’s he doing up on stage in Salem State University’s Rockett Arena singing a song about poo-poo in his daughter Luna’s diaper?

“Somebody’s got a stinky booty/And daddy’s going to clean it up.”

Lisa Hughes, the WBZ anchor and the host interviewer last night at the Salem State Series event honoring Legend, had asked the pop star/actor if he ever made up songs at home. The untitled poopy song was the result. It’s not quite the equal of “All of me/Loves all of you.”

Legend was on the Salem State University campus Tuesday night to perform three songs (“Love Me Now,” “Ordinary People” and the worldwide smash love song “All of Me) and to discuss his social activism on such issues as criminal justice reform and education. The award-winning entertainer received the inaugural Salem Advocate for Social Justice award from the Salem Award Foundation for Human Rights and Social Justice. The program lasted about an hour.

Monday night, Hollywood power couple, Legend and his wife Chrissy Teigen, walked the red carpet at the star-studded Met Gala at the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York City. The previous week, the couple attended the TIME 100 Gala, where Legend was honored as one of the magazine’s 100 Most Influential People of the year. (Legend signed a copy of the magazine which was presented to Salem State’s retiring President Patricia Maguire Meservey.)

Welch Florist celebrates 70 years

Last night he quietly and passionately talked about the support he got from his parents (his dad was a factory worker; his mom stayed at home), teachers, guidance counselors and others. He excelled at school and was the first member of his family to go to college.

“Every child in America has that right,” he said to cheers. “America is great, but there are things America can do better, in regards to criminal justice, gun violence and providing a quality education for all kids. We lock up a higher number of people than they do anywhere else in the world. No matter what you think of other countries, they don’t incarcerate as many people as we do … and if someone does get in trouble, we should not just throw them away.”

Salem Mayor Kim Driscoll likened Legend’s activism to keeping the message of the Salem Witch Trials alive, “and we believe that’s never been more important than this year,” she said.

The performer’s philanthropy and activism are, well, legendary. The Salem Award Foundation for Human Rights and Social Justice recognition is just the most recent acknowledgement of his efforts. Legend has worked throughout his career to make a difference in the lives of others, contributing time, money and his talents to dozens of charities and foundations, starting in 2007 when he traveled to Louisiana and helped families devastated by Hurricane Katrina.  

After reading Earth Institute founder Jeffrey Sachs’ book “The End of Poverty,” Legend immediately traveled to Ghana to learn firsthand the problems faced by African countries and steer residents in impoverished villages toward self-sufficiency. That led to his starting the successful Show Me Campaign to raise funds for those efforts.

A group of Salem State students attended the Black, Brown and College Bound Summit in Tampa, Fla., in February, where Legend was the keynote speaker. At Salem State, The Brotherhood is focused on academic success and retention, offering men of color resources and mentorship to reach academic and achievement goals. An effective Crowdfunding effort funded the trip. Those young men took a bow to wild cheers from the near-capacity audience last night.

Legend’s work has garnered him 19 Grammys, an Academy Award, a Golden Globe award, and a BET Award for best new artist, among others. A graduate of the University of Pennsylvania, Legend recently won his first Golden Globe, a Grammy and a Critic’s Choice Award for his song “Glory,” which he wrote and performed with Common for the film “Selma.” He has worked with a who’s who of today’s musical stars, including Kanye West, Alicia Keys and Jay Z. Legend most recently played the role of a musician in “La La Land.” He will return to the area on June 19 for a concert at Boston’s Blue Hills Bank Pavilion.

Future of ER care at Union uncertain

ITEM FILE PHOTO 
The future of emergency care remains uncertain at the soon-to-close Union Hospital.

By THOMAS GRILLO

LYNN — No decisions have been made about the future of emergency care at Union Hospital after it closes in 2019.

Members of the Emergent/Urgent Care Planning Group, which includes hospital executives, public officials, and residents, met at City Hall on Monday in a two-hour meeting that was closed to the press and public.

Dr. David J. Roberts, president of the North Shore Medical Center (NSMC), said the meeting was one of many to determine the scope of emergency room services NSMC will provide in Lynn after Union shutters its campus.

“Our goal is to keep some form of emergency care, hopefully at the Union campus, but that will depend on who buys it,” he said.

It could be located in another Lynn location, he said.

Last year, the state Department of Public Health unanimously approved a $180 million expansion of NSMC that will close Union and move the beds to the new Salem campus in 2019. The medical facilities in Lynn and Salem are a part of Partners HealthCare. They recently posted the biggest annual operating loss in its 22-year history when it reported $108 million in losses on operations in the fiscal year that ended Sept. 30, 2016.

Lynn lays down the law for students

The panel has been discussing whether to provide full emergency room services or urgent care, Roberts said.

A complete ER accepts ambulances and all comers no matter how sick, embedded into a hospital that provides other services, such as surgery, he said. Urgent care is where patients go when they are not desperately ill, but have an acute condition that must be dealt with immediately.

“Having an emergency room absent all of the support services may not be the way to go,” Roberts said. “But this committee is evaluating all of this and no decision has been made.”

Mayor Judith Flanagan Kennedy, a member of the panel, said they are making progress toward consensus about what the future of health care in Lynn will look like.  

State Sen. Thomas McGee (D-Lynn), who also serves on the committee, said these are ongoing meetings that discuss options for when the hospital closes.

When Roberts was asked why the meeting excluded the public, he referred the question to Laura Fleming, a hospital spokeswoman.

“These sessions have always been closed to the public,” she said. “I don’t know why and I don’t have a well thought out answer. No one has ever asked me that question before.”


Thomas Grillo can be reached at tgrillo@itemlive.com.

 

Girls Inc. of Lynn to hold 19th annual H.A.L.T. event

FILE PHOTO
Lynn Vocational Technical Institute, where Girls Inc. of Lynn will be holding the event.

LYNN — Girls Inc. of Lynn will host its 19th annual H.A.L.T. (Healthy Alternatives for Lynn Teens) event at the Lynn Vocational Technical Institute High School cafeteria Saturday from 5:30 to 10 p.m. The event serves to increase positive social norms by highlighting healthy alternatives to drinking and other risky behaviors, and inspire youths to become involved in their communities and make healthy choices.

Created by teens for teens, this free event is open to eighth through 12th grade students, including students from the Marblehead, Swampscott, and Salem communities. Youths participate in workshops focused on empowering oneself and others. The workshops are led by Girls Inc. of Lynn peer leaders and staff from other social organizations in the community. Afterward, teens are invited to enjoy international food and a pizza-tasting contest. Following dinner, teens who were nominated by their school or community organization will receive a Youth in Action Award. The night will conclude with a choice of either dancing or competing in a basketball tournament — a new addition to the event this year, made possible by a collaboration with Stop the Violence Lynn and the Lynn Police Department’s Drop-in Center.

“The H.A.L.T. event is a great opportunity to celebrate teen’s accomplishments and contributions, while providing a safe, educational, and fun space for them to hang out, be inspired, and make new friendships,” says Deb Ansourlian, Executive Director of Girls Inc. of Lynn.

In addition, all chaperones attending H.A.L.T. are invited to a networking session while the teens are participating in workshops. This networking session provides an opportunity to learn about what other similar organizations in the community are doing and brainstorm ways to collaborate.

Girls Inc. of Lynn is a nonprofit organization, and an affiliate of the national Girls Inc. model. Girls Inc. of Lynn aims to inspire all girls to be strong, smart, and bold by meeting the needs of girls in the community, developing their capacity to overcome the effects of discrimination and be self-sufficient, responsible members of the community. By providing girls aged 5-18 with after-school and summer programs tailored to their needs, Girls Inc. of Lynn has served as a vigorous advocate for all girls in the surrounding North Shore communities since 1942.

How much would you pay for this pottery?

COURTESY PHOTO
This piece of pottery — about the size of a hot plate — fetched $3,900 at auction.

SALEM — At an April 3 auction, a bidder put up $3,900 for this piece of Marblehead pottery, according to Witch City Consignment & Thrift co-owner Jenn Bayles. The bidder claimed that the piece could be worth upward of $10,000-20,000.

Tell us how much you would have bid for the piece.

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Some say trash; others see treasure

 

Some say trash; others see treasure

ITEM PHOTO BY DAVID WILSON 
Witch City Consignment & Thrift is located at 301 Essex St. in Salem.

By DAVID WILSON

SALEM — Witch City Consignment & Thrift sells anything. Well —

“Almost anything — that we can sell that’s legal,” Jenn Bayles, 39, says with a laugh Wednesday, an hour before opening the 11-year-old shop she owns with her father, Joe.

Take a right; pass displays of designer sneakers, bags, small antiques and collectibles. Then, a left to follow a passage of cabinets and tabletops to one side; artwork and frames on the other.

Above, a hanging banner says, “Ask us about our next auction.”

Jenn Bayles

This piece was purchased for $3,900.

The shop’s most recent auction was April 3. Bayles said it was the first in about a year and drew more than 100 people. The next one should be in a few months, she said.

One notable piece of merchandise from the April 3 auction came out of a Marblehead estate. A small piece of pottery — “literally a tile,” Bayles said — fetched $3,900.

The piece is small; Bayles said about the size of a hot plate. “In the antiques world, pottery is a big thing,” she said. Supposedly this was a rare one.

Bayles said she thinks the color of the piece made it special. On the backside of the tile, she remembers a marking of a ship with lines going through it.

Sounds about right. Marblehead Pottery “bears a signature of a square rigged sailing ship flanked by the letters M and P,” information on marbleheadpottery.net says.

“The very earliest marks were hand-drawn or painted,” the website says. “Some early pieces had Marblehead written beneath the ship. Other early pieces were simply marked with only the ship.” It appears the pottery was made between 1904 and 1936.

This piece, Bayles said, came from a home clean-out in Marblehead. It was in the attic, wrapped in newspaper. At auction, four or five bidders went at it, she said. But at the end, it was down to two.

“Everyone keeps talking about it,” she said Wednesday. “Because the (successful bidder) said that it could be worth $10,000-20,000.”

The underbidder, Bayles said, afterward told her father he wished he had gone higher.

The piece was sold with seemingly similar items; some only selling for $20-35, Nayles said. “If I had put that (Marblehead Pottery) up for $20, someone just hit the jackpot,” she said.

Bayles gets stories like that all the time. She said a customer once bought a record for a dollar; he told her he would sell it for $100 on eBay. But that’s OK with Bayles: it means he will come back, she said.

Toward the center of the shop are wicker baskets filled with what appears to be unrelated, black-and-white family photos; or what Bayles affectionately calls “instant families.”

David Wilson

A sampling of the “instant families.”

Sold for $1, these photos are a mix: some posed portraits; one, a photo dated 1956 of a woman smiling in a intricate, white gown; presumably a wedding dress.

Another, dated 1946, shows a young girl lifted off the ground by a man; perhaps her father. She could be well into her 70s now.

These photos are not only some of the shop’s best sellers, but have a story. And sometimes the customers do the legwork.

“One person, years ago, bought a picture, researched it, found the family and sent it to them,” Bayles said.

The family’s reaction, she said: “Oh my god, I was at a thrift store!”

Other items that often draw interest are old license plates, magazines, newspapers and records.

There’s something for everybody, Bayles said. Some merchandise flies out the door; other pieces stay for a while.

“I love doing this,” she said, surrounded by items. “A lot of people think it’s easy, but it’s not.”

Witch City Consignment is located at 301 Essex St. in Salem. Visit www.witchcityconsignment.com or follow Witch City Consignment & Thrift on Facebook for information on merchandise and upcoming auctions.


David Wilson can be reached at dwilson@itemlive.com.

 

Saugus falls short to Gloucester

By HAROLD RIVERA

SAUGUS — When a pitcher is throwing strikes, it’s usually tough for the opposing team to pull out a win. When a pitcher is throwing strikes and leading the team at the plate, it becomes even tougher.

That was the theme of Gloucester’s 4-2 win over Saugus at World Series Park on Monday. Gloucester starting pitcher Marc Phinney tossed 5 2/3 strong innings and went 2-for-4 at the plate with two RBI.

“He (Phinney) has pitched a lot for us, the way the schedule’s worked out he’s made four starts for us now,” Fishermen coach Bryan Lafata said. “He’s a senior, a captain, three-year varsity player. He doesn’t wow you, but he hits his spots. He definitely was our leader today.”

Monday’s game was tied 2-2 heading into the top of the seventh inning, before Phinney brought home Matt Smith with the go-ahead run. Two batters later, Gloucester added an insurance run with a single off the bat of Jack Sperry, scoring Liam Lyons for the 4-2 advantage.

The loss puts Saugus at 2-5 on the season, and is especially tough on the Sachems given the performance they received from pitcher Steve Ruggiero. Ruggiero threw six innings and fanned seven Gloucester batters.

“Ruggiero pitched a good game,” Sachems coach Joe Luis said. “(In the top of the seventh) they had two righties up to bat, eighth and ninth hitters. Ruggiero was over 100 pitches, so we brought in relief.

“He tossed a good game but at 100 pitches, we can only let him go so far,” Luis added. “We can’t let him throw much more than that, it’s a long season.”

The Fishermen took the first lead of the game, 1-0, thanks to an RBI single from Matt Heckman in the top of the second inning. Sal Costanzo led off the inning with a single and advanced to second after Jeremy McCollum was hit by a pitch. Costanzo then took third on a passed ball and scored on Heckman’s RBI single.

Saugus tied the game at 1-1 in the bottom half of the frame. Nick Dascoli reached first base on an error to start the rally. A pair of walks drawn by Jimmy Alcott and Justin Horvath loaded the bases for Paul Stamatopoulos, who tied the game with a sacrifice fly to center.

The Sachems threatened for more, but Phinney forced a 6-4-3 double-play to end the inning with no further damage.

The game remained tied at 1-1 until Gloucester reclaimed the lead in the top of the fifth. Ryan Strescino singled to start the inning. Pinch-runner Nate Young advanced to second after a single from Heckman. A double-steal placed runners on second and third, with no outs, for Phinney. The pitcher’s sacrifice fly to center scored Young to give Gloucester a 2-1 edge.

A solo home-run from Dascoli in the bottom of the sixth gave Saugus life and tied the game at 2-2. Dascoli’s blast cleared the fences in left-center, good for his first home run of the season.

“That was big,” Luis said. “We had a chance, possibly, to get the winning run in the seventh if we hold them in the top of the inning, but it is what it is.”

Gloucester scored twice in the seventh for the 4-2 win.

“Normally it’s good to win close games,” Lafata said. “Unfortunately every game has been like that for us this year. We’ve had two extra-inning games. Our reliever, Liam Lyons, that’s his third win this season. Marc’s pitching well but he hasn’t gotten the wins. That’s the funny thing about it.”

Both teams are back at it on Wednesday when Gloucester (5-2) battles Salem and Saugus clashes against Danvers.

Things going well with Donovan at Salem State

PHOTO BY SALEM STATE
Al Donovan, the new baseball coach at Salem State, says things are going well in his first season at the helm.

By HAROLD RIVERA

 

SALEM — During his days with the Lynn Tech baseball team, Al Donovan was a standout pitcher.

A 1984 graduate, Donovan, compiled a 21-3 record on the mound in his three seasons as a Tiger.

Now Donovan’s tackling a big role just five miles north of his hometown. Last August, Donovan was named head coach of the baseball team at Salem State University after two seasons as pitching coach.

With Donovan at the helm, the Vikings are off and running this season. Salem State started the season with a spring trip to Arizona, where the Vikings matched up against a slate of top competition from around the country.

The games in Arizona gave the new head coach an early indication of what his team will look like this year. That indication, Donovan said, was one that he liked.

“Things are pretty good (this season),” Donovan said. “We had a successful trip to Arizona. We went 7-4 and played some great competition. It was tough for our pitching staff to stay intact during that stretch but they did well. Our bats left with five home runs, so we hit the ball well. It was a successful trip.”

Since returning from Arizona, the Vikings have gone 8-8, placing them at 15-13 on the season.

They earned a big 5-3 win over Endicott earlier this week, after losing to the Gulls, 4-0, in the Vikings’ first game of the season.

“I’m happy with the way we’re playing ball,” Donovan said. “We just need to be a little more consistent in what we do from hitting, to pitching and fielding. If we’re a little more consistent, we’ll be in good shape.”

The Vikings won the Massachusetts State Collegiate Athletic Conference (MASCAC) in each of Donovan’s two seasons as pitching coach. Donovan foresees a competitive set of conference games ahead.

“It’s going to be a tough conference this year,” Donovan said. “Everyone’s improved this year: Worcester State University, Mass Maritime, Framingham State. It’s going to be a battle. Everyone comes to play. It’s going to be a tough road. Every year it comes down to pitching and defense. We need to go out and battle every single week.”

In adjusting to his new role as head coach, Donovan has noticed that leading the program comes with new responsibilities. Time management has been key as he tackles those responsibilities.

“There’s a lot that goes into being the head coach from trying to raise money to support your spring trip, to making sure you have everything in compliance, to scheduling,”

Donovan said. “You have to be able to manage your time. Time management is important.”

Luckily Donovan has had two full seasons with the Vikings to lean on, meaning he didn’t come into the role without familiarity with his players.

“It’s a good part of it, being here the past two years with the pitching staff,” Donovan said. “I’m able to know the individual players and their strengths and weaknesses.”

Joining Donovan on the coaching staff are former Vikings catcher Mike Lamothe, Angelo Salustri and John Sheehan.

Among the many conversations that the coaches have had together is one about the handful of local players on the team. Salem State carries 11 players from the North Shore area on its roster, including Lynners Nick Day, Joe Kasper and Matt Stanley. Also among the locals is a trio of pitchers from Peabody in Tyler Fitzgerald, Steve Leavitt and Andrew McLaughlin, as well as co-captain Teghan Malionek from Salem.

Donovan credited the pack of local talent on his team to the high school coaches in the area who have developed successful programs.

“I’ve talked to my assistant coaches about this, I’m a big believer that the North Shore is rich in high school baseball,” Donovan said. “That’s to the credit of the coaches in the area. A number of these coaches are outstanding coaches and do a great job developing players. If we can keep these guys at home, we’ll have a great program. It’s a great aspect.”

As the Vikings move into conference play, Donovan’s goal is for his team to improve on a daily basis. If the team finds the right combination of pitching, hitting and defense, Salem State should be right back in the thick of things in MASCAC.

“We’re trying to improve every single day to be the best possible team we can be,” Donovan said. “The kids are working very hard. Progression is starting to take its place. As we’re progressing, we need to get to a point to where we’re doing it consistently. I couldn’t ask for a better group of kids that are working hard.”

Warren: Unless we fight, they won’t believe us

ITEM PHOTO BY OWEN O’ROURKE
U.S. Sen. Elizabeth Warren rallies the crowd at Salem High School.

By LEAH DEARBORN

SALEM — “I’m going to say something really controversial — I believe in science,” said U.S. Sen. Elizabeth Warren to a packed auditorium at Salem High School Thursday night.

Warren was answering one of about 80 questions submitted by attendees to a town hall forum. The inquiry was about how Environmental Protection Agency budget cuts will affect the North Shore, an area with a long history of industrial pollution.

“We need to be thinking about how we are going to keep ourselves going in a world that’s changing around us,” said Warren, who advocated for doubling down on science and infrastructure funding.   

Many of the forum attendees were from Salem, Marblehead, and Nahant, but a few came from as far as Lawrence to ask their questions.

Warren gave a particularly passionate response to a question about how the Democratic party can send a unifying message to voters. The answer lies in action as opposed to a change in branding, she said.

“The reality is, unless we’re going to get out there and fight … no one’s going to believe us,” said Warren. “Why should they believe us?”

Man loses his foot after SUV-motorcycle crash

The topic of universal health care came up, which Warren called a basic human right. She acknowledged the existence of issues with the Affordable Care Act, also known as Obamacare, but said the constant initiatives to repeal it have stood in the way of making critical adjustments.  

Marblehead resident Jason Mondale brought up a bill Warren introduced with Sen. Chuck Grassley (R-Iowa) to decrease the cost of hearing aids.

Warren described the bipartisan bill as an example of a small crack in the law where legislators were able to work for an effective change.  

National issues such as the recent decision by the Trump administration to attack Syria were addressed by Warren, who assured the crowd that the president cannot take additional military action without the approval of Congress. She said if he wants a shot of getting that approval, he will need to explain his plan of action in detail first.

“We are safer when people in other countries are safer,” said Warren. She said in many instances, building partnerships can be more effective than deploying weapons.  

A vocal critic of the Trump administration, Warren is up for re-election next year.

Swampscott sizes up rail trail plan

COURTESY PHOTO
A map shows the path of the planned Swampscott Rail Trail. 

By GAYLA CAWLEY

SWAMPSCOTT — Residents got a chance to sound off on plans to convert abandoned railroad tracks into a community rail trail on Thursday night with opponents citing safety, privacy, wildlife and cost concerns. Proponents say the trail provides health benefits and a safe, alternative mode of travel.

Residents packed a room at Swampscott High School for an informational meeting on the rail trail, with heated comments and questions fielded by Peter Kane, director of community development, who started off the discussion with a presentation.

Elizabeth Pappalardo, an abutter of where the trail would be, said her concern was not just about privacy with people making use of it near her property. Her backyard has become home to wildlife, she said, and she sees deer, foxes and skunks. She said she was concerned for the animals who would be displaced.

Pappalardo said she and other neighbors may not be comfortable having swing sets in their backyards, with people cruising through Salem and Marblehead, as the trail would link to the ones in those two communities. She was worried about safety, saying she wouldn’t be able to have her kids in the backyard by themselves any more.

“We’re asking for your help to protect our children, privacy, safety and our town,” Pappalardo said.

Jonathan Leamon, a Swampscott resident, said he is in favor of the trail. As a bicycle rider, he said it’s pretty much a downer when the trail comes into Swampscott and just ends. He argued that the incidences of crime along the rail trails is actually down.

“My goal is to have a rail trail in my lifetime,” Leamon said. “Now that I’m retired, I’d really like to ride on it while I can still ride a bicycle.”

Town Meeting members in May will be asked to approve a warrant article requesting $850,000 to be used for the design and engineering of the trail location within the National Grid corridor, as well as the legal fees and costs for acquisition of the easement rights, as previously reported in The Item.

The Town Meeting funds would not be for construction of the trail, which would be paid for by donations, grants and private funds, officials said.

Kane said $240,000 of those requested funds would be used to hire professionals for design and engineering costs. About $610,000 would for acquisition of easement rights, where the town would work with the property owners (National Grid and/or other parties) to secure the rights. This may be done through eminent domain, with compensation for owners, or by donation/gift of the land.

Town officials met with National Grid representatives in 2014 and 2015, who were believed to be the sole owners of the easement wanted by the town for the trail. Officials said the town had previously been in discussions to acquire the easement from the company for little to no cost, but it has since been learned that National Grid doesn’t appear to own all of the land. Through a title process, numerous owners have been identified, which could include abutters.

The two-plus mile trail would run from the Swampscott Train Station to the Marblehead line at Seaview Avenue connecting with the Marblehead Rail Trail, which also links to trails in Salem. The 10-feet wide trail would cross Paradise Road, Walker Road and Humphrey Street and then go into Marblehead, officials said.

The rail bed, where National Grid power lines run to Marblehead, has been vacant since the 1960s, when the Marblehead railroad branch shut down. It was sold to National Grid’s predecessor.

The town has full rights to the area that separates the ballfields behind the middle school and the middle school. The town would have to acquire the remainder of the easement for recreational use.

Warren: Unless we fight, they won’t believe us

Brian Maloney said he was one of the abutters who thinks that he owns land on part of the easement the town is looking to acquire. He said he has legitimate concerns about crime at his house. There have been breaking and enterings up and down the path, he said. Another abutter, who didn’t want to share his name, said he had been robbed three times, and the way the people got access was through the trail.

Maloney said he was also a father of three children and said “I never would have bought this house if I knew this was the case.” He had also grown up in the house, which has been in his family for three generations.

Town Meeting has voted for the creation of the trail on four separate occasions, including three times since 2002, Kane said. In 2009, Town Meeting gave the town the authority to use eminent domain for a recreational easement, but didn’t allocate the funds for that process.

“After 17 years, we sit here tonight,” said Paul Dwyer, an abutter. “We’re going to bet $850,000 that we may be able to finish this with donations.”

Not all abutters were against the trail.

“I don’t have any concerns,” said Frances Weiner. “I welcome the trail.”

Weiner said she was not afraid of being killed on the rail trail. She said she was more afraid of being killed on her bike riding to the rail trail.

Gayla Cawley can be reached at gcawley@itemlive.com. Follow her on Twitter @GaylaCawley.

Ruggiero denied Peabody superintendent post

ITEM FILE PHOTO
Debra Ruggiero answers questions during an interview for the superintendent position.

By ADAM SWIFT

PEABODY — Interim Superintendent Herb Levine will likely serve one more year as the head of the school district.

The search for a new superintendent came to a temporary end Wednesday night, when the Peabody School Committee voted to request a waiver from the state’s Department of Education allowing Levine to stay on for another year because of a critical shortage of qualified superintendent candidates.

The vote means Debra Ruggiero, the principal of Lynn’s Harrington School and the last finalist standing in the committee’s superintendent search, will not be offered the Peabody position.

Committee members praised Ruggiero, but the members were united in saying they were disappointed there were no candidates brought forward with the kind of central office experience they believe Peabody needs. The two other finalists, John Oteri and Arthur Unobskey, were offered the top school jobs in Malden and Wayland, respectively, and withdrew from consideration in Peabody.

“I think the three finalists we had were excellent people, I just think they lacked the district experience,” said School Committee member Tom Rossignoll. “We want somebody with district experience, and that was not offered to us.”

Several committee members also said they believed the search process, which was overseen by the Massachusetts Association of School Committees, started a little too late this year to bring in enough qualified candidates.

“I think one of the problems with starting a little late is that candidates were scooped up quickly,” said School Committee member Brandi Carpenter. “If we’re going to do it again, we need to start earlier and we need to think outside the box.”

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Carpenter also said she felt Ruggiero was an excellent candidate, but that she and the other finalists lacked the budget and contract negotiation skills needed in such a large district.

“I too, although it was not the fault of the candidates, was disappointed in the pool,” said committee member Jarrod Hochman. “This is a quasi-urban community with over 6,000 students, over 1,000 employees, and a $72 million budget. We had candidates who did not have experience with collective bargaining, and not one candidate had experience formulating a budget beyond the building or department level.”

Committee members noted that the process next year should wrap up by March, rather than April, in an effort to get a jump on the best candidates.

For Levine, the 2017-18 school year will be his third year in a row as interim superintendent in Peabody. The former Salem school chief was also the interim superintendent in Peabody during the 2011-12 school year.

Levine said he is willing to stay on in the interim position for another year, but that he was drawing a line in the sand.

“I’m not going to work beyond that; I’m going to be 70 years old,” he said. “I’m proud to have the privilege to steer the ship for one more year.”

 

Next steps for Swampscott rail trail

SWAMPSCOTT — Plans to convert abandoned railroad tracks into a community rail trail will be outlined in a public forum at the Swampscott High School cafeteria Thursday at 7 p.m.

A second informational meeting on the rail trail will be Tuesday, May 2 at 7 p.m. in room B129 at the high school.

“It’s just to learn more and to also be part of the next step of bringing the rail trail to town,” said Peter Kane, director of community development.

Town officials said in a press release it’s been years in the making, but the next big step to making the Swampscott Rail Trail a reality will take place during Town Meeting May 15.

The Board of Selectmen have unanimously sponsored a warrant article requesting $850,000 to be used for the design and engineering of the trail location within the National Grid corridor, as well the legal fees and costs for acquisition of the easement rights, as previously reported in The Item.

The Town Meeting funds would not be for construction of the trail, which would be paid for by donations, grants and private funds, officials said.

Kane said the meetings will give a history of the rail trail process, what the actual process is going forward, show the plan of the relative location of the trail, and discuss how the money will be used.

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The two-plus mile trail would run from the Swampscott Train Station to the Marblehead line at Seaview Avenue, connecting with the Marblehead Rail Trail, which also links to trails in Salem. The 10-feet wide trail would cross Paradise Road, Walker Road and Humphrey Street and then go into Marblehead, officials said.

The rail bed, where National Grid power lines run to Marblehead, has been vacant since the 1960s, when the Marblehead railroad branch shut down. It was sold to National Grid’s predecessor.

The town has full rights to area that separates the ballfields behind the middle school and the middle school. The town would have to acquire the remainder of the easement for recreational use.

The trail was identified as a priority in the Open Space & Recreation Plan in 2013 and last year in the Master Plan process. Town Meeting has approved the creation of the trail on three separate occasions, officials said.

Visit www.swampscottrailtrail.org for information on the rail trail and Town Meeting warrant article.

 

Divers search Foster Pond for evidence

COURTESY PHOTO
Authorities are on scene at Foster Pond in a search for evidence.

By BRIDGET TURCOTTE

SWAMPSCOTT Divers took to Foster Pond to recover evidence from a home invasion that occurred in Salem about a month ago.

Swampscott Police Sgt. Tim Cassidy said detectives from the department are working with the Salem Police Department to search the pond. Authorities believe someone threw an item, which he declined to identify, into the pond following the invasion.

“They received information that something was in there,” Cassidy said. “That someone had thrown something, maybe evidence, in there.”

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Several residents, including Fisher Avenue resident Chris Miles, were initially alarmed by the large truck labeled Salem Police Special Operations and police in diving equipment. Miles said he asked a police officer on scene.

“He said the neighborhood is safe and that they were helping Salem investigate a case,” he said.

Cassidy said police will return later in the week to continue the search.

“It was a little murky today so (divers will) try to go back,” he said.


Bridget Turcotte can be reached at bturcotte@itemlive.com. Follow her on Twitter @BridgetTurcotte

Peabody has say in statewide conversation

ITEM PHOTO BY OWEN O’ROURKE
Patrick Maguire talks to Massachusetts state senators about real estate.

By LEAH DEARBORN

PEABODY — It was the North Shore’s turn to host a Commonwealth Conversation in the form of a Town Hall Forum at the Higgins Middle School on Tuesday night.

Commonwealth Conversations began as a way for members of the Senate and local government to hear citizen concerns in nine areas of the state.

Members of the audience were given two minutes to stand before legislators and speak their minds on whatever issue they wished to address.

State Sen. Joan Lovely of the Second Essex District was one of nine senators present for the forum, along with State Rep. Thomas Walsh (D-Peabody).

Earlier in the day, the legislators visited Roca in Chelsea, attended a forum regarding transportation at the Lynn Museum and took a development walking tour of Malden.

“You’re going to see something very unusual. Twenty-five percent of the state Senate not saying a word,” said State Sen. Michael Rodrigues.

A few topics, such as climate change, the privatization of the MBTA, and animal cruelty came up several times throughout the night, but the concerns of citizens ran a wide gamut.

Patrick Maguire, president-elect of the North Shore Association of Realtors came to the podium to talk about housing affordability, which he said faces barriers in local zoning laws and could be addressed through the passage of Bill S.94.

Lynn talks transportation

Carl Nellis, a Gloucester resident who works in Peabody, was at the forum on behalf of political group Essex County #6 Indivisible in support of the Safe Communities Act, designed to prevent local law officers from becoming involved with immigration enforcement.   

Others in the audience sought support for carbon pricing bills as a means of cutting carbon emissions in the state. Sue Kirby of Salem endorsed the incremental raising of the state minimum wage to $15 per hour by 2021.

“No one should work full-time and make so little that they can’t make ends meet,” she said.

The town hall forums are part of the process by which the Senate sets its agenda. Commentary provided in the forums was written up in a report at the end of the senators’ previous tour.

Higgins named principal at South School

By ADAM SWIFT

PEABODY – A familiar face is returning to the South School as its new principal.

Mark Higgins, a former South School assistant principal who has been principal at the Witchcraft Heights Elementary School in Salem for the past decade, has been named to replace Monique Nappi at the South School.

Nappi is retiring effective June 30, and Higgins will take the reins on July 1.

“Dr. Higgins brings a wealth of educational and leadership experience to this position, as he has been a very successful principal in Salem for the past 13 years and recently earned his doctoral degree as well,” interim superintendent Herb Levine stated in a letter to the school committee. “I know Dr. Higgins to be a wonderful human being, someone who loves kids and has superb interpersonal skills as well. I am certain that Dr. Higgins will be a great fit for the terrific South School community.”

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Levine said Higgins was the one finalist moved forward by a screening committee of parents, teachers, and school administrators and community members. Levine said he and Higgins were able to quickly agree on a contract.

Higgins is a Peabody resident, and said he is happy to be coming back to the community where he lives and his three children go to school.

“It’s nice to come back and to not be a stranger,” said Higgins. He said that while he does know a number of people in Peabody, he is looking forward to meeting the new students and families of the South School community.

While Higgins said he is happy to return to Peabody, he appreciated the years he spent in Salem.

“I went to Salem 13 years ago from the South School,” he said. “I loved my time there, and Salem was my hometown, so it worked out great.”

There will be a meet and greet with Higgins for members of the South School community at the school on Tuesday, May 16 at 6:30 p.m.

“I hope that as many of the South School community as possible will be able to join us in welcoming Dr. Higgins to the Peabody Public Schools,” Levine said.

 

William G. Potter, 95

William Goodwin Potter, 95, of Danvers and Hamilton, died peacefully at home on April 10, 2017. Husband of Mary Theresa Potter who predeceased him, he was the son of the late William G. and Margaret Potter.

Born in Salem, Bill graduated from Salem High School in 1939. He worked as a lifeguard at Forest River Park, was active at the Salem YMCA and hiked and skied in the White Mountains. Before volunteering for military service with the U.S. Marine Corps in WWII, Bill was on the track team and graduated from Boston College in 1943 and, upon completion of his military service, he graduated from Georgetown University Law School in 1948.

He served as a USMC paratrooper in the Pacific Theater before being reassigned to the 5th Marine Division, 26th Marine Regiment, which led the invasion of Iwo Jima, one of the bloodiest battles in U.S. military history. The 5th Marine Division sustained the highest casualty rate among the three Marine divisions involved in the invasion and Bill received the Purple Heart for wounds he received there. He also received the Presidential Unit citation, the Asiatic Pacific theater citation and the National defense and service awards for his military service. Bill was recalled to active duty service during the Korean conflict and was assigned to Camp Lejeune, N.C. Bill ended his military service with the rank of Major.

Although Bill thought he was going to work in the legal field following his graduation from Georgetown University Law School, he soon realized that his professional life and personal interest was in the field of education so he returned to school and obtained a Master’s degree in Education from Salem State College. He then spent his next very satisfying decades teaching civics and history at Danvers High School.

A month ago and after 70 years of marriage, the love of Bill’s life, his wife Mary, died. Bill was inconsolable; he died of a broken heart. The two of them, Bill and Mary, had been inseparable; if you saw Bill, Mary would be at his side, and together they relished the challenges of raising a large family. In retirement, they enjoyed spending time at their cabin in the Mt. Washington Valley, N.H., and at their residence in Florida as well as their travels abroad, especially to Ireland.

Bill is survived by his 11 children Julie Zohn and her husband Bob of Boston, Adria Lancaster and her husband Bill of Walpole, Judy Potter of Al Wakrah, Qatar, Bruce Potter and his wife Anita of Danvers, Suzanne Allison and her husband Bob of Topsfield, David Potter and his wife Liz of Danvers, Mary LeBlanc and her husband Mike of Danvers, Mark Potter and his wife Ginny of Hamilton, Shawn Potter and his wife Barbara of Hamilton, Richard Potter and his wife Helen of Hamilton, William Potter and his wife Margo of Middleton and New York City. He is also survived by his sister Patricia Salvo of Salem, Gratia Milliken of Windham, N.H., 21 grandchildren and 14 great-grandchildren. He was predeceased by his sisters Margaret MacDonald and Pauline Papalardo.

The Potter family would like to extend its sincere appreciation to the nurses, aides and chaplain from All Care VNA and Hospice who provided professional and compassionate care to their father.

Service information: Visitation will be held at the CAMPBELL Funeral Home at 525 Cabot St., Beverly on Tuesday, April 11, from 4-7 p.m. A funeral Mass will be held on Wednesday, April 12 at 11 a.m. at St. Mary Annunciation Church at 24 Conant St., Danvers. Relatives and friends are invited to attend. Information, directions, condolences at Campbellfuneral.com.

Big names at fundraiser for Northeast Arc

COURTESY PHOTO
Tom Gould, owner of Treadwell’s Ice Cream and Peabody city councilor-at-large, and Gabriella Foley of Swampscott are just two of the participants in Northeast Arc’s fashion show fundraiser.

Swampscott’s Kim Carrigan, host of the Boston.com Morning Show on WRKO-AM,  will host Northeast Arc’s “An Evening of Changing Lives” fundraiser on April 29 at the Danversport Yacht Club in Danvers.

For the first time, the event will feature more than a dozen local celebrities, dignitaries, and business leaders in a fashion show.

Each of these volunteers will be paired with individuals whose lives are changed as a result of the community’s support of the Northeast Arc’s services. They will walk the runway in clothes supplied by Brooks Brothers and the Gap at the Northshore Mall; J. Mode in Salem; Infinity Boutique in Swampscott; and lululemon.

Northeast Arc is a Danvers-based nonprofit that helps children and adults with disabilities become full participants in the community.

The event will also serve to honor Jeffrey Musman of Nahant, a partner at Seyfarth Shaw LLP.

“Jeffrey has been a longtime supporter of the Arc, serving as an instrumental member and past president of our board,” said Jo Ann Simons, CEO. “Jeff’s firm has been at the forefront of employing individuals with disabilities.”

Here comes the sun in Malden

The evening will include a wine tasting by Kappy’s Fine Wine & Spirits, dinner, and an auction. Hank Morse of the Loren & Wally Show on 105.7 WROR will serve as auctioneer.

Fashion show participants include Jay Ash, Massachusetts secretary of housing and economic development; Lauren Beckham-Falcone of the Loren & Wally Show; RoAnn Costin, president of Reservoir Capital Management; Jim Ellard, CEO of New England BioLabs; Tom Gould, owner of Treadwell’s Ice Cream and Peabody city councilor-at-large; Elisa Holt, 2015 Mrs. Massachusetts; Mitch Holt of Liberty Mutual; Steve Immerman, president of Montserrat College of Art; Chris MacKenzie, office managing partner at RSM Boston; Daniel Miller, anchor and reporter at FOX 25; Quincy Miller, president of Eastern Bank; Kendra Petrone of Magic 106.7; Marty Willis, chief marketing officer of TIAA; and Mikki Wilson, director of marketing and business development at Cabot Wealth Management.

Sponsorship opportunities and tickets to the event are available.  For more information, contact Susan Ring Brown at srbrown@ne-arc.org or (978) 624-2487.

Union Hospital to shut down by 2019

ITEM FILE PHOTO
An aerial view of North Shore Medical Center Union Hospital is seen in this August 2016 file photo.

By THOMAS GRILLO

LYNN — Union Hospital’s days are numbered.

Dr. David J. Roberts, who took over as president of the North Shore Medical Center (NSMC) this week, said the city’s only hospital will be shuttered in the fall of 2019 and sold.

Its closure will coincide with the opening of a $210 million campus in Salem. The new building will include an emergency room and two dozen medical/surgical beds. The Spaulding building will be renovated and become a mental health center. “The new NSMC facility will be completed in October of 2019 and at that point the Union campus will close,” he said.

Today Union Hospital offers an ER, inpatient pediatric and geriatric psychiatry,  intensive care units and a medical floor for patients recovering from orthopedic surgery.  

Last year, they served 20,000 ER patients and averaged about 50 medical/surgical patients.

Roberts said it’s still unclear what kind of urgent care will remain in Lynn.

Union Hospital could close earlier if demand for service continues to dwindle, he said.

“We are seeing fewer people using the hospital since we announced plans the closure,” Roberts said.

Disability Commission seeking unsung heroes

As Partners HealthCare, which operates NSMC, struggles financially, it recently eliminated 166 positions or 5 percent of its workforce.

“We are a financially challenged,” he said. “I don’t think patients are feeling significant effects of it because it was mostly administrative positions.”

Partners posted the biggest annual operating loss in its 22-year history in 2016 when it reported $108 million in losses on operations in the year that ended Sept. 30.


Thomas Grillo can be reached at tgrillo@itemlive.com.

 

Swampscott gives the Green(wood) light

By GAYLA CAWLEY

SWAMPSCOTT — Town officials are moving forward with a proposal from Groom Construction to redevelop the shuttered former Swampscott Middle School on Greenwood Avenue.

On Wednesday night, the Board of Selectmen unanimously approved a proposal from Salem-based Groom Construction, which had submitted two concepts. The town will now enter into negotiations with the company.

The first concept, for 28 apartments or condominiums, adhered to the zoning approved at Town Meeting last spring. In lieu of not offering any affordable housing, Groom would contribute $150,000 to the town’s affordable housing trust. The second concept was for a 60-unit Chapter 40B affordable housing project, with 25 percent of the apartments or condominiums allocated as affordable.

Groom submitted a response to the most recent Request for Proposals issued by the town. It gave developers an option to submit a plan that conformed to the zoning approved at Town Meeting last spring for a single structure with 28 units on the site that had to adhere to an affordable housing component, or for a Chapter 40B affordable housing project. Developers also had the option to present proposals for both options.

The selectmen approved the proposal with the 28-unit building as the primary, and the 60-unit 40B project as an alternative, if there was litigation from the neighbors for the primary concept, according to Naomi Dreeben, chairwoman of the board of selectmen.

“I would very much like to proceed with the 28-unit building,” said Dreeben. “As much as I want to see more affordable housing in the town, I think 60 units and a larger building is not something I would like in that location. I would like to see it smaller.”

Neighbors have expressed concern that a 28-unit structure would be out of character with the existing neighborhood. They, along with other residents with an interest in the project, filed a citizen’s petition for Town Meeting in May, hoping to reuse the building. Citizens of Swampscott for Adaptive Reuse, want to privately fund $60,000 for a feasibility study to investigate all possible uses for the site. Residents urged the selectmen to delay their vote on the proposal before the article could be voted on.

Spring cleaning

“A vote tonight is going to strip, in my opinion, it will strip the Town Meeting members’ right, as a legislative body, to vote on a pending matter,” said Benjamin Agoes, an abutter.

Agoes said the “soul of Swampscott is going to be decided by what ultimately sits on the top of Greenwood Avenue,” and the town’s civic pride, commitment to its Master Plan and respect for zoning bylaws was at stake.

“I’d like to see that (building) serve some public purpose,” said Richard Frenkel, who filed the citizen’s petition. “It’s a personal preference, but that’s the way I feel about it.”

Agoes questioned why the selectmen were representing Groom versus “the people,” with other residents in attendance saying it was blackmail.

“I’ve heard that numerous times,” said Dreeben. “We’re elected officials. We are charged with doing what we believe is in the best interest of the town, and the town is a whole entire town. We understand that our town has numerous neighborhoods and that people in different neighborhoods have different interests and priorities. And so, it is on our shoulders to look at the full picture of the town and take a balanced approach to development and preservation. And so, we must make that decision.

“That is what we must do and I have worked very hard to mitigate the negative impact of what I thought was too big a development without enough consideration for neighbors originally. But for arguing about whether you individually or 20 people are the people, versus the 14,000 people who live in the town, that’s not an argument I’m going to enter into.”

Laura Spathanas, board vice-chair, said the selectmen’s job is to honor Town Meeting votes, and “we haven’t done that.”

“This has been a long process,” Spathanas said. “I feel like it has not been rushed … We’ve tried to listen to everybody’s wants in the town … We are going to honor the Town Meeting vote. I agree that the smaller unit is something that would fit up there.”  

The proposal price from Groom is $1.2 million. Director of community development Peter Kane said the company requested that they be credited for costs associated with the demolition and abatement costs, which Groom estimated around that $1.2 million figure. He said the town has not agreed to that request, which will be part of negotiations.

In January, the selectmen decided to act upon the advice of Town Counsel and issue another RFP with both options. The board had been slated to either approve or deny a proposal from Groom Construction to convert the former middle school into 28 luxury apartments or condominiums, with three garage outbuildings on site.

Selectman Peter Spellios said at the time that Town Counsel recommended reissuing the RFP because the neighbors had been clear that they were intending to again bring litigation against the town if it went forward with Groom’s proposal. A 40B project, in which 25 percent of units would have to be affordable, would give the town protection against a potential spot zoning lawsuit from neighbors, as it is exempt from zoning, and therefore, harder to appeal, he said.

The board decided to table the proposal from Groom, leaving the option open for them to respond to the new RFP. The town is already in the midst of pending litigation with Groom, which originally won approval for a 41-unit condominium project on the site in 2012. That suit has to be settled before the town can proceed with the sale of the property.

The lawsuit stemmed from an initial zoning change approved at Town Meeting, which allowed for a multi-family unit on the parcel. That was overturned in Massachusetts Land Court after neighbors filed suit in 2014, and zoning reverted back to single-family housing.

Selectman Donald Hause said the town was trying to prevent the possibility of a much more dense 40B development than the one proposed. If there is no legal settlement and Groom wins the lawsuit, the company could proceed with the 28 units zoning allows or build a much larger 40B project, where the town would not have the same control.


Gayla Cawley can be reached at gcawley@itemlive.com. Follow her on Twitter @GaylaCawley.

 

Fenwick wins clash of CCL rivals

ITEM PHOTO BY KATIE MORRISON
Fenwick’s Colbi Flickinger and St. Mary’s Nikki Bendickson vie for a loose ball.

By KATIE MORRISON

PEABODY — The Bishop Fenwick girls lacrosse team took the lead early and never relinquished it on its home turf, taking down visiting Catholic Central League rival St. Mary’s, 12-5, on Tuesday. Molly Camelo had a big offensive game for the Crusaders (2-0) with five goals, while a total of six Fenwick players found the back of the net.

“We started out the game how we wanted, then leveled out for a bit there, but we made the adjustments we needed to,” said first-year Fenwick coach Bridget Dullea. “We possessed the ball longer and did a much better job in the second half, and I was happy with that.”

Fran Carpinella had two goals and one assist, while Hannah Durkin and Maddy Bethune each had one goal and two assists. Meg Carney and Brigid Waldron each scored one goal and Colbi Flickinger had one assist.

For the Spartans (1-1), Codi Butt led the way with two goals, while Liz Weisse had one goal and one assist. Sarah Ryan had one goal and Riley Lynch had one assist.

St. Mary’s, who was coming off a big 17-6 win over CCL foe Arlington Catholic in which seven players scored, didn’t quite have the offensive firepower in its second game, but coach KC Butt still liked what she saw from her team.

“I’m pretty happy with how the girls played today,” said Butt, who was missing some players due to injury. “We have some new girls out there who haven’t really played the game before, and to see what they were able to do against a quality program like (Fenwick) makes me really excited for what’s to come. We’re just going to build on this.”

The Crusaders came out firing to open the game, with Camelo notching two goals within the first 1:15 of action. The Spartans answered back with a goal from Ryan, but Fenwick put up two more goals over the next two minutes to keep the lead at two goals. With about 14 minutes left, Butt got the Spartans on the board and then put another one in six minutes later to cut it to 4-3 and give the Spartans some momentum. But Fenwick was able to slow the momentum when Bethune scored on an assist from Durkin with just over a minute to play in the half, putting the score at 5-3 going into the break.

“We made a lot of good plays early to keep ourselves in it, but turnovers hurt us in the end,” said Butt. “We turned it over, didn’t win ground balls, and couldn’t make some of the small plays that we needed to make to win this one. We’ve still got plenty to work on.”

The second half is when the Crusaders were able to pull away. They came out hot again to start the half when Waldron put one in the net less than two minutes in. After St. Mary’s scored again to make it 6-4, Fenwick went on a 5-0 run over the next 12 minutes of play to blow the game open. Turnovers got the better of the Spartans and Fenwick was able to take advantage, running away with its second win of the year.

“This is how we wanted to start off the year and this definitely helps with our confidence,” Dullea said of the team’s solid start. “Hopefully we can keep this going through our week of practice and into our game on Friday and then beyond.”

Up next for the Crusaders will be a home game against Mystic Valley on Friday afternoon, while the Spartans will take on Salem on Saturday afternoon.

Adamantia Lagonakis, 77

SALEM — Mrs. Adamantia (Kastrinakis) Lagonakis, age 77, of Salem, died peacefully on Tuesday in Massachusetts General Hospital, surrounded by her loving family, after a lengthy illness. She was the beloved wife of Nondas Lagonakis, with whom she shared nearly 56 years of marriage.

Born and raised in Sgourokefali, Crete, Greece, she was the daughter of the late Vasilios and Ourania (Maragakis) Kastrinakis. She came to the United States at age 14 and lived in Lynn for several years. She had resided in Salem since 1970.

Adamantia and her husband Nondas were co-owners of Bill & Bob’s Roast Beef in Salem for 48 years. Throughout her life, she maintained a sweet and simple demeanor that won the trust and hearts of many, including her employees, many of whom referred to her as “Mom.” Her signature gift of joy, shown through her beaming smile, laughter and humor, will never be forgotten. Her strength and business aptitude were notable, as was her ability to quietly empower her children and husband to make important decisions, never desiring to be in the spotlight. She was warm, friendly, giving, sincere and honest. She adored her family and cherished every moment they spent together, especially while doing what she loved most: gardening, playing with her grandchildren or spending winters in Marco Island, Fla. Adamantia left for the world a graceful example of a life well lived.

In addition to her husband, she is survived by four adoring children, Marina Kargakis and her husband George, Valerie Gerontis and her husband Emmanuel, Angelo Lagonakis and his wife Heather and Maria Lagonakis-McNulty and her husband Conor; 11 grandchildren, Stefan and his fiancé Monica, Nondas and Jason Kargakis, Katerina and Constantinos Gerontis, Alexandra, Nondas and Demitrios Lagonakis and Arianna, Donovan and Logan McNulty; as well as many aunts, uncles, cousins, nieces and nephews. She was the sister of the late George Kastrinakis.

Service information: Her visiting hours will be held on Tuesday from 4-8 p.m. in the SOLIMINE Funeral Home, 67 Ocean St. (Route 1A), Lynn, and on Wednesday from 9-11 a.m. in St. George Greek Orthodox Church, 54 S. Common St., Lynn. Her funeral will be held on Wednesday at 11 a.m. in St. George Greek Orthodox Church. Burial will be in Pine Grove Cemetery, Lynn. Relatives and friends are respectfully invited. In lieu of flowers, donations can be made in memory of Adamantia Lagonakis to the Massachusetts General Hospital Allergy & Clinical Immunology Unit. Please make checks payable to Massachusetts General Hospital and can be mailed to: Massachusetts General Hospital Allergy & Clinical Immunology Unit, c/o MGH Development Office, 125 Nashua St., Suite 540, Boston, MA  02114. Directions and guestbook at www.solimine.com.

 

Bringing back the R&B beat

ITEM PHOTO BY DAVID WILSON
Local DJ Jay Brown is pictured outside Bruno’s Bar + Burger.

By DAVID WILSON

LYNN — You may never see Ryan Seacrest walk the city streets, but you may see Jay Brown at the Stop & Shop on Washington Street.

Brown, one of the newest voices of Boston-based radio station The New 97.7, can be spotted all over. At 6 feet 4 inches, in a black newsboy cap, he’s hard to miss.

Thursday afternoon, at Bruno’s Bar + Burger on Western Avenue, the Lynn resident gives a quick history of R&B.

The genre started in the 1940s, but it would be a few decades before the “R&B era,” as he calls it, begins.

The New 97.7, which launched in January, plays R&B from the 1970s to today: Stevie Wonder to Drake; Al Green to Ne-Yo. Coming on board the first weekend of March, Brown can be heard from 3-7 p.m. Saturdays and Sundays.

His station is one that, he says, is returning R&B to the masses. “Turn on 97.7 and (people) feel the difference,” he said. “They can actually hear the difference … their kids love it because they’re hearing songs that they know, and the parents are liking it because they’re hearing songs they know.”

In a small booth at Bruno’s, Brown speaks about the “musical journey.” Think of it as time-travel: a trip from decade to decade, and back again.

“Music is endless; the possibilities are endless with music. If you can connect a memory with a song, that’s part of the musical journey,” he says.

The 38-year-old wants to help bring the musical journey to Lynn. He will be deejaying an “old-school” night, beginning 9 p.m. Wednesday, April 12 at Bruno’s, 858 Western Ave.

KIPP Academy scores 1st senior acceptance to MIT

Brown says he grew up in Salem and moved to Lynn about 20 years ago. His love of music appears to have started early, following him through most of his professional life.

“When I was in eighth grade, I was deejaying in a club, which was a college night,” Brown said; yes, he says he was over 6 feet then, too. “I had experiences that the average eighth-grader wouldn’t have experienced.”

In the early ’90s, R&B faded as hip-hop became more prominent, Brown said. But some of today’s hip-hop has taken a dive with talk of drugs, violence and “things that nobody wants in their community,” he said.

You won’t hear anything like that on Brown’s station. “Not at all; there’s not even a song we would play that has a word that would need to be bleeped out,” he said.

It’s a family-friendly, out-in-the-community, live-and-local station, Brown said; it’s something a lot of other Boston radio stations lack.

“It’s incredible to be on the radio in Boston, and be able to entertain everybody not only in Boston, but also on the North Shore; family, friends,” he said.

And after less than a month on 97.7, Brown says he gets recognized all over the place. He’s bound to see someone wherever he goes: Boston, Lynn, Salem, he said. But he’s always shocked when he’s asked for his autograph.

“Who am I? I don’t make a million dollars,” he says. “But I love what I do at the end of the day.

“A million dollars, to me, is putting a smile on people’s faces when they hear the music.”


David Wilson can be reached at dwilson@itemlive.com.

Lynn murder suspect held without bail

ITEM PHOTO BY OWEN O’ROURKE
Pictured is the memorial on Bowler Street for Mohammadreza Sina Zangiband.

By GAYLA CAWLEY

LYNN — The New Hampshire man charged with murder in the fatal shooting of a 24-year-old pizza deliveryman was held without bail on Thursday.

Brian Brito, 21, of Manchester, N.H., pleaded not guilty to murder during his arraignment at Lynn District Court. He is scheduled to return to court May 3 for a probable cause hearing.

WBZ-TV

Murder suspect Brian Brito is taken into Peabody District Court.

Brito is accused of killing Mohammadreza Sina Zangiband, a deliveryman for Atha’s Famous Roast Beef.

Zangiband, of Salem, was delivering food for Atha’s when he was shot multiple times on Bowler Street, near St. Pius V. School, a Catholic elementary school, on Monday. He was found dead in his vehicle shortly before 6 p.m., authorities said.

Zangiband’s girlfriend, Luxana Perez, of Lynn, said she’ll remember him as a nice person and a hard worker. She said Zangiband was studying to become a pilot, his dream job. “That’s all he ever wanted to be and he was working so hard to achieve his goal, 20-year-old Perez said.

“He was an extremely nice and friendly person with everyone. He never did bad things or have problems with anybody. He had a heart of gold. I still can’t believe he’s really gone. It’s been so hard for me and everyone.”

Brito stood behind a chalkboard out of sight during his arraignment on Thursday, at the request of his defense attorney, Rebecca Whitehill. He was also out of sight behind a door during his Peabody District Court appearance on Tuesday, when he was arraigned on firearm and motor vehicle charges stemming from his arrest by State Police four hours after the shooting.

“There is a potential for an issue as to the identification of the shooter,” Whitehill said. “I am not saying that is the defense. I’m just saying there is that potential and I do not want to have an identification, a suggestive identification, made that would compromise the defendant’s defense.”

In the affidavit filed by State Police Trooper Thomas J. Sullivan IV in Lynn District Court, a male witness, an off-duty firefighter, described the shooter as a clean-cut Hispanic male in his late 20s to early 30s, standing approximately 5 feet 7 to 5 feet 8 inches, with a medium build.

The firefighter said the man exited the Audi, walked around his car, back toward the Hyundai and pointed a black semi-automatic handgun at the driver of the Hyundai, identified as Zangiband, and shot him four to five times, Sullivan wrote.

Shooting victim ‘quiet, yet always had a smile’

Zangiband was found dead with at least one gunshot wound to the head, inside the 2012 Hyundai Sonata, which was pulled to the side of the road in front of the St. Pius School. The Hyundai was shifted in reverse and Zangiband’s foot was still on the brake pedal. Police found four spent 9mm shell casings outside the driver’s side door of the Hyundai, Sullivan wrote.

Video surveillance from homes in the area seemed to corroborate the firefighter’s account. He said a dark-colored Audi came from behind the Hyundai on the left, overtook it and forced it to pull over, blocking the vehicle in before the shooting. The videos “have led officers to postulate that the basis of the confrontation between the two motorists may have been the result of a road rage incident,” Sullivan wrote.

Brito was arrested while driving the gray Audi sought in connection with the homicide, and police said an illegal firearm was found in his possession. The firefighter had been able to relay information about the New Hampshire license plate to authorities, Sullivan wrote.

After his arrest by state police in Peabody, Brito was linked to the description of a suspect wanted by North Andover police in connection with an armed robbery and sexual assault in that community less than an hour before he was pulled over, state police said.

Brito is accused of entering a Richdale store with his face concealed by a mask, ordering the female clerk at gunpoint to lock the doors, and taking her to a back room where she was sexually assaulted. The gunman then emptied the cash drawer and took numerous lottery tickets before fleeing in an unknown direction, according to a North Andover police statement.

Brito is expected to be arraigned in Lawrence District Court Monday on those charges of aggravated rape, armed robbery while masked and kidnapping.

A gofundme account called “a loving son taken too soon” is set up to help Zangiband’s family pay for funeral expenses.


Gayla Cawley can be reached at gcawley@itemlive.com. Follow her on Twitter @GaylaCawley.

NEC-GBL merger begins this spring

By STEVE KRAUSE

When the spring sports season gets into full swing next week, the new Northeastern Conference-Greater Boston League merger — approved last year — will officially be in effect.

The Northeastern Conference has absorbed the four remaining teams from the GBL (Everett, Malden, Medford and Somerville).

For the spring, teams in each sport will be placed in one of two divisions, called North and South. The breakdown for baseball and softball is: North: Peabody, Revere, English, Classical, Beverly, Marblehead, Everett and Medford; South: Danvers, Salem, Gloucester, Saugus, Swampscott, Winthrop, Somerville and Malden. All teams within the merged league will play each other once.

In boys and girls tennis, the breakdown is: North: Malden, Everett, Peabody, Danvers, English, Classical, Revere and Beverly; and South: Medford, Somerville, Salem, Swampscott, Marblehead, Gloucester, and Winthrop. All teams will play each other once.

In track, Beverly, Danvers, Everett, Gloucester, Malden, Marblehead, Peabody and Revere are in the North; and Classical, English, Medford, Salem, Saugus, Somerville, Swampscott and Winthrop are in the South.

The Lynn Jets boys lacrosse combine will be in the South division.

N.H man charged with Lynn shooting death

SCREENSHOT PROVIDED BY WBZ-TV
Murder suspect Brian Brito is taken to Peabody District Court.

LYNN A Manchester, NH man has been charged with murder in the fatal shooting of a pizza delivery man on Monday.

Brian Brito, 21, will be arraigned on one count of first degree murder in Lynn District Court tomorrow.

“This was a brazen, senseless act that not only took the life of a hard-working young man, but also frightened community members,” District Attorney Jonathan Blodgett said in a statement.  “I am grateful to the many law enforcement officers who worked so diligently to obtain this warrant so that we may begin the process of securing justice on behalf of Mr. Zangiband and his family.”

Shooting victim ‘quiet, yet always had a smile’

Brito is currently held without bail in Middleton House of Corrections following his arraignment in Peabody District Court yesterday on a firearms charge.  North Andover Police have charged him with aggravated rape, armed robbery while masked and kidnapping.  He is expected to be arraigned on those charges on Monday, April 3 in Lawrence District Court.

Sina Zangiband, 24, of Salem, was delivering food for Atha’s, when he was shot multiple times on Bowler Street, near St. Pius V. School, a Catholic elementary school. Zangiband was found dead in his vehicle, according to the Essex County District Attorney’s office.

 

Shooting victim ‘quiet, yet always had a smile’

ITEM PHOTO BY DAVID WILSON
An officer returns to the scene of a fatal shooting on Bowler Street. 

By GAYLA CAWLEY

LYNN A quiet residential neighborhood became a crime scene after Sina Zangiband, a 24-year-old deliveryman for Atha’s Famous Roast Beef, was shot to death early Monday night.

Zangiband, of Salem, was delivering food for Atha’s, when he was shot multiple times on Bowler Street, near St. Pius V. School, a Catholic elementary school. Zangiband was found dead in his vehicle, according to the Essex County District Attorney’s office.

Brian Brito, 21, of Manchester, N.H., was arrested by State Police while driving a car sought in connection with the fatal shooting, and was ordered held without bail following a Peabody District Court appearance Tuesday.

A not guilty plea was entered on behalf of Brito, who remained behind the door out of sight during his arraignment. Judge Richard Mori ordered him held until April 10 when he will be appear in court again for a dangerousness hearing.

WBZ-TV

Brian Brito is taken to Peabody District Court in a screenshot provided by WBZ-TV.

Brito, a “person of interest” in the Lynn homicide, was arraigned on unrelated charges filed by State Police, including carrying an unlicensed firearm and motor vehicle charges.

State Police said Brito was driving the gray Audi that was the subject of a police alert broadcast after the fatal shooting shortly before 6 p.m.

Police pulled over Brito in Peabody about four hours after the shooting, according to a state police statement, and found an illegal firearm in his possession. Brito was quickly linked to the description of a suspect wanted by North Andover police in connection with an armed robbery and sexual assault in that community less than an hour before he was pulled over.

North Andover officers responding to a Richdale store were told by a female clerk that a man entered the store with his face concealed with a mask, and brandished a firearm. The man ordered the clerk at gunpoint to lock the doors, and took her to a back room where she was sexually assaulted. The gunman then emptied the cash drawer and took numerous lottery tickets before fleeing the scene in an unknown direction, according to a North Andover police statement.

North Andover police issued an arrest warrant for armed robbery while masked, aggravated rape and kidnapping. Brito is expected to be arraigned next week in Lawrence District Court.

Brito’s defense attorney Rebecca Whitehill would not comment on the charges out of Peabody, other than to say “he was arrested and he had firearms, a firearm on his person. That’s about all I could tell you.”

Whitehill said she had not discussed the allegations out of North Andover or Peabody with Brito, and added that she would not share that information with the media if she had.

She requested that Brito remain behind the door during his arraignment, rather than come into the court, which was allowed by Judge Mori.

“If, in any allegations, there is an issue as to his identification, we would hate to have his face plastered all over various media and have an improper suggestive identification,” Whitehill said.

The Lynn homicide is being investigated by the DA’s office, the Essex State Police Detective Unit and the Lynn Police Department.

Police pull over driver of suspect vehicle

Katharine Ruiz, 25, of Lynn, works at the Dunkin’ Donuts next door to Atha’s and said she was a friend of Zangiband.

“He was a hard worker — very quiet, yet always had a smile on his face,” Ruiz said.

Ruiz said Zangiband was not a violent person, but just happened to cross paths with someone who was. From what she has gathered, she said it was a road rage incident that caused his tragic death. Authorities have not released a motive for the homicide.

“I’m not sure if Sina was cut off or vice versa, but the gunman became enraged and got out of his dark Audi with New Hampshire plates, shot Sina as many as three times, close range through the car window, got back in his car and sped off,” Ruiz said. “Sina was on his way from Atha’s to a delivery on Eastern Avenue and cut through Bowler Street around 6 p.m.

“It’s heartbreaking to know that people can take life for a reason most people find silly,” she continued. “He is greatly missed (by) a lot of people, not just his immediate family, but his Atha’s family too.”

Bowler Street residents described the neighborhood as quiet and safe. A spokesman for St. Pius School said the homicide was “unsettling.”

“We are grateful that no one from the school was injured and all of our students, faculty and staff are safe,” said Terrence Donilon, a spokesman for the Archdiocese of Boston. “This was certainly unsettling news.  We are thankful for the tremendous efforts of the Lynn Police and all law enforcement.

“The St. Pius Principal Mr. Maestranzi has been in communication with parents, faculty and staff assuring them of the school’s desire to be supportive of the students as the community comes to grip with this senseless act of violence. The Catholic Schools Office for the Archdiocese has been in contact with the school administration offering support. St. Pius School is a wonderful, safe and vibrant Catholic school. The school extends its expression of prayers for all impacted by this event.”

Sandro Jolibois, 34, a Bowler Street resident, said the neighborhood is pretty quiet.

“It’s frightening because my kids get to see what happened,” Jolibois said. “It’s not what you want for your kids.”

Jolibois said his 7-year-old child saw the victim in the car after the shooting, and said “it’s a healing process,” referring to helping his young children process the incident.

He said the shooting could have happened anywhere, and it wasn’t anyone from the neighborhood. He said one car pulled alongside the other one and “blasted” the other one.

Matthew Krajewski, 73, a Wrentham resident, was visiting his son and daughter-in-law at their home in the neighborhood. He said his son had been living there for 10 years, and nothing similar had ever happened during that timeframe that he could recall, calling it a nice neighborhood.

“We live in an almost rural neighborhood and it could happen there too, I suppose,” Krajewski said.

A Bowler Street resident walking her dog on Tuesday, who did not want to be identified, said she had been living there for 12 years and the street had always been quiet and uneventful. She said she heard shots Monday night, police were there within minutes, along with other emergency responders. When a sheet was put over the vehicle with the victim inside, she said she knew there was no chance of resuscitation.

“It made the whole neighborhood uneasy, but I guess it can happen anywhere,” the woman said.    


Gayla Cawley can be reached at gcawley@itemlive.com. Follow her on Twitter @GaylaCawley

Local coaches honored at IAABO banquet

ITEM PHOTO BY STEVE KRAUSE
From left: Wayne Hanscom, Marblehead; Steve Stranahan, friend of Mike Carr and Tom Grassa of Lynn Classical gather for a picture.

By STEVE KRAUSE 

DANVERS — His best friend said Mike Carr was the toughest person he ever knew, but that this toughness didn’t include the ability to speak before people.

“He was tough,” said Steve Stranahan, who accepted the James Young Courage Award presented by Board 130 of the International Association of Approved Basketball Officials on Carr’s behalf Tuesday night at Danversport Yacht Club.

Carr, who was struck ill a year ago, rallied from life-threatening sickness to resume coaching the English boys basketball team in December, and did not miss a game until he was forced to go into the hospital in January. He died Jan. 27.

In all that time, Stranahan said, “he never thought about not coaching. He had three things that were important in his life: his wife and kids, his family and basketball.

“I’d be wanting to know how he was feeling, and he’d be wanting to know how the kids were doing, and what we should do about this or that. He was 100 percent dedicated to the kids he coached.

“But he wasn’t one for speaking before people,” said Stranahan. “He couldn’t do what I’m doing now. He was a man of few words.”

Stranahan took over once Carr became too sick to coach, and he eventually finished out the year on the Bulldogs’ bench — helping lead them to a spot in the Division 1 North MIAA tournament.

With Stranahan Tuesday were Carr’s mother, Jeanne; and his children, Rachael and Michael.

Also honored by the board were Classical boys coach Tom Grassa, Marblehead girls coach Wayne Hanscom and sub-varsity referee Steve Almquist from Saugus.

Grassa received the Robert S. Pierce Award for the boys coach of the year. He has been coaching at Classical for 31 years, and helped lead the Rams to the Division 2 North final before losing to eventual state champion Brighton.

“I never saw it as 5-on-7,” said Grassa. “Referees don’t help win games, and they don’t help lose games.”

Regarding the recently-completed season, Grassa said it was “a terrific season.

“In the beginning, we didn’t think we’d end up with the record we did,” he said. “But as it wore along, toward about the halfway point, we realized we had the talent. The kids believed in themselves. Then, it wasn’t just about having a good season. It was about having a championship-caliber team.”

Grassa is the third coach from Classical to win the Pierce Award, joining Herb Brenner, who won the first one; and Lou Falkoff, who won it when he retired.

Hanscom won the John Squires Sr. Award for the girls coach of the year. He is unique among award winners in that he also won the Pierce award when coached at Salem.

Hanscom used the opportunity to thank his longtime assistant, David Byner, who has been with him on various benches for his entire coaching career.

“He’s been with me since Day One,” Hanscom said.

Almquist, who is also the Saugus High softball coach, could not make it to the dinner, as bad weather has forced spring baseball and softball teams indoors, and the Sachems had the gym Tuesday night.

He received the Robert A. Gallagher Award for sub-varsity officials.

Other award winners were Madison Napoli, Amesbury, Roger Alley Award for girls player of the year; Patrick Gavin, Beverly, Edward “Gint” Middleton award for boys player of the year; Hoops for Hope, the IAABO Board 130 President’s Award; Andrew Selima of St. John’s Prep and Mary Erb, Masconomet, the Larry McIntire IAABO Board 130 Classic scholarship winners; Eric Dawes of Amesbury, who also won the Young Courage Award; and Al Naffah, also a Gallagher Award winner.

Dan Cargill received the John J. Mulkern Award; and Dick Taylor the Charles S. Cook Award.

Big Blue have big shoes to fill

FILE PHOTO
Luke Marshall and the Big Blue will look to be competitive this spring while replacing a number of talented seniors from last year’s team. 

By HAROLD RIVERA

SWAMPSCOTT — The benefit of having a senior-heavy roster is that experience can often drive a team to a run at a state championship.

The downfall is that those seniors need to be replaced the next season.

That’s the challenge the Swampscott baseball team will face this spring.

The Big Blue reached the second round of the state tournament last spring, where it was ousted by Austin Prep in a game played over two days due to lightning. The Blue were leading when the storm hit, but the Cougars rallied the next day.

“It was a tough pill to swallow,” Big Blue coach Jason Calichman said. “We lost a lot of seniors, but it looks like we have a nice mix of underclassmen with older, experienced players.”

Calichman, in his fifth season directing the Big Blue, leads a coaching staff that also includes assistants Brendan Nolan, Kevin Rogers and Robert Serino. All four of the coaches are former Swampscott baseball players themselves.

“All of us played at Swampscott High and we know what it’s like to represent the town,” Calichman said.

For leadership this season, the Big Blue will rely on senior Louis Olivieri, fresh from being among the scoring leaders for the hockey team, who returns at catcher. Olivieri enters his fourth season as a varsity starter.

“He’s the catcher, he has control of the field at catcher,” Calichman said. “We’ll lean on him a lot for leadership and experience. Hopefully he’ll have another great year and lead the way for us.”

Other key returners include seniors Sean Lahrizi at center field, AJ Venuti at first base and David Peterson at left field.

On the mound, Swampscott lost a trio of star pitchers in Cory Bleau, CJ Howard and Gavin Sullivan, but brings back a pair of talented hurlers in junior Luke Marshall and senior Josh Rubin. Calichman will also look to hand the ball to Peterson for some innings.

“If we throw strikes, we’ll be in games,” Calichman said. “If we don’t, it’ll be tough.”

“We’ll really need people to step up and pound the strike zone,” Calichman added.

Aside from that, every other position is up for grabs. Although the vacancies raise a number of question marks, they’ve also created interesting competitions throughout the preseason. Calichman won’t deny that his team lost a lot of talent from last season but eventually every senior gets replaced.

“We’re only four days in but I’ve been really happy with the work ethic and the level of competition through those four days,” Calichman said. “You look at losing all the guys we lost last year. They, at some point, filled in for somebody too. Somebody will step up, it’s just a matter of who. Whether they’re a freshman or a senior, we’ll go with the best player.”

Four days into the preseason, Calichman has also noticed some rust from his players. He’s sure that rust will start to go away once the players get an increased amount of reps in practice and scrimmages.

“You’re looking at kids that are a little rusty,” Calichman said. “We really want kids playing three sports in Swampscott so they’re just getting into baseball now. We’re knocking off some rust, but that’s expected. As far as the approach to one another and the team teamwork, I can’t say enough about them. I’m optimistic that this group can gel together and win some games.”

Swampscott has six scrimmages scheduled, the first of which is slated to take place at Lynn English Wednesday. The Big Blue will scrimmage against the Bulldogs twice, while also battling against St. Mary’s, Manchester-Essex, Salem and Reading.

“I’m really hoping we get them in,” Calichman said. “We need to see the team in action. I’m really looking forward to the scrimmages to see how these guys step up and to find our pitching.”

Swampscott opens the season April 10 against Marblehead.

“Hopefully we’re playing this game the same way up 10 or down 10,” Calichman said. “We represent the town well and that’s my goal. If we’re up 10, we carry ourselves the right way. If we’re down 10, we keep grinding. Competitiveness will be our focal point this season.”

 

Legend’s Salem State visit rescheduled

COURTESY PHOTO
John Legend, left, is pictured in a scene with Ryan Gosling in “La La Land.”

SALEM — John Legend fans will have wait a little longer to see their idol.

Due to unforeseen circumstances, the award-winning singer-songwriter’s appearance at Salem State University has been rescheduled to May 2. The initial date was March 30.

The May 2 Salem State speakers series event will begin at 7:30 p.m. in the university’s Rockett Arena. All tickets purchased for the March 30 event are valid for May 2 and may be used for entry. Questions or concerns should be directed to the series box office at (978) 542-7555 or seriestickets@salemstate.edu on weekdays between 10 a.m. and 4 p.m.

At Salem State, Legend will perform some of his hit songs in addition to discussing his initiative, the Show Me Campaign, which focuses on education as a key to breaking the cycle of poverty, and the #FREEAMERICA campaign, which is aimed at ending the school-to-prison pipeline. At the event, Legend will receive the inaugural Salem Advocate for Social Justice award from the Salem Award Foundation.

Tickets, $25 to $100, may be purchased at salemstate.edu/series or by calling the box office.

Legend is an award-winning singer-songwriter whose work has garnered him 19 Grammy awards, an Academy Award, a Golden Globe award, and a BET Award for best new artist, among others.

The Salem State series is presented by the Salem State Foundation which was incorporated in 1977 as a 501(c) (3) private, nonprofit organization. Its mission is to help Salem State achieve its goals by raising, investing and distributing private contributions for the benefit of the university. In so doing, the foundation provides the opportunity to meet the needs of the Salem State community not met through public funding.

Denorabilia LLC is the presenting sponsor for this event. The Salem State series is solely funded through corporate sponsorships and individual ticket sales.

US surgeon general visiting Salem State

By THOMAS GRILLO

SALEM Dr. Antonia Novello, the first Hispanic woman to serve as U.S. Surgeon General, will speak at a series of events in Greater Boston next week.

She will speak on making history as the first Latina surgeon general, health care disparities, engaging the next generation workforce, strengthening the Latino pipeline into STEM fields and the vision and voice of women.  

Hosted by the Association of Latino Professionals for America and Salem State University, the 73-year-old native of Puerto Rico will attend events in Salem, Haverhill, Lawrence and Boston.  

During her tenure under Presidents George H. W. Bush and Bill Clinton, Novello focused on the health of young people, women, and minorities, spoke out on under-age drinking, smoking, drug abuse, AIDS, childhood immunization and improved health care for Hispanics and other minorities.

In 1999, she was appointed commissioner of the New York State Health and was responsible for disaster management following the 9/11 attacks.

During the week of March 20-25, Novello will attend events at Salem High School, Collins Middle School in Salem, Simmons College, Salem State University, Salvatore’s Restaurant in Lawrence, Northern Essex Community College in Haverhill, the Massachusetts Department of Transportation and Eastern Bank, both in Boston.

“It is a true historic moment to host Dr. Novello in Boston at a time where there is much conversation on health care issues impacting Latinos,” said Enna Jimenez, president of the Association for Latino Professionals For America, in a statement.

Swampscott pulls plug on yacht club

Novello received her B.S. from the University of Puerto Rico at Rio Piedras in 1965 and her M.D. degree from the University of Puerto Rico School of Medicine at San Juan in 1970. She completed her residency in nephrology at the University of Michigan Medical Center in Ann Arbor.

In 1978, Novello joined the Public Health Service Commissioned Corps, her first assignment being as a project officer at the National Institute of Arthritis, Metabolism and Digestive Diseases of the National Institutes of Health (NIH). She held various positions at NIH, rising to deputy director in 1986.

Novello earned a masters in public health from John Hopkins in 1982. Novello was appointed Surgeon General by Bush in 1990.

In 2009, Novello ran afoul of the law. She pleaded guilty to a felony charge as part of a plea deal to avoid prison time. The doctor admitted she forced state employees to handle personal chores when she was the New York’s health commissioner. The deal called for community service, $22,500 in restitution and a $5,000 fine. Novello faced up to 12 years in prison if convicted. Investigators said Novello used state workers to chauffeur her on shopping trips and rearrange heavy furniture at her apartment.


Thomas Grillo can be reached at tgrillo@itemlive.comMaterial from Associated Press was used in this report.

Businesses asked to warm up to summer jobs

By THOMAS GRILLO

LYNN Despite this week’s blizzard, the first day of summer is just three months away.

Savvy youth are already seeking jobs to fill their vacation months with work and pockets with cash. But they need employers to step up.

Now in its 13th year, FirstJobs is a community-wide effort to provide work experiences for youth in 19 local communities by the North Shore Workforce Investment Board. The Salem-based nonprofit is a one-stop career center with an office in Lynn. They are seeking private sector businesses and nonprofits that can employ youths.

“We are greatly concerned that young people are not working,” said Mary Sarris, executive director. “At one time, the employment rate for teens was more than 50 percent, but it has dropped to below 30 percent.”

The summer employment program is designed to provide first-time summer employment opportunities for youth between the ages of 14-21 for eight weeks during July and August.

Youth are recruited and trained by FirstJobs. They connect local businesses needing summer help with youth seeking employment.

The cost is $1,760 to hire a teen to work 20 hours per week in July and August at minimum wage, $11 an hour.  

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For employers unable to hire a teen, they are asked to consider a tax-deductible contribution to the program. Donations allow them to place teens at nonprofits.

Job readiness workshops are required of participants applying to grant-funded positions and recommended for all youth. The job readiness workshops prepare them for skills needed to succeed once they gain employment.

“We teach them about dress codes, what to do if they’re going to be late or absent, things important to know for their first job,” Sarris said.  

Last summer, the program provided 597 youth with jobs at 180 private sector and nonprofit employers. Among the companies to offer teens work were: Dunkin’ Donuts, North Shore Animal Hospital, Empire Loan, Hampton Inn and Starbucks.


Thomas Grillo can be reached at tgrillo@itemlive.com.

Breaking new ground for veterans

Peabody deserves praise for Veterans Services Director Stephen Patten’s initiative to provide free legal services for men and women who served their country.

Porcello Law Offices in Salem is Peabody’s new partner in a campaign to help veterans and their families navigate the legal system. The effort to connect veterans with the legal help they need starts with a Porcello attorney spending two days a month at the Torigian Community Life Center, a Peabody location that counts many veterans among its residents.

The legal aid program represents a progressive approach by Patten and the city to reach out to veterans and it is a tribute to Porcello, a firm founded by a veteran.

Patten’s initiative mirrors the collaboration by Lynn doctors and the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs to ensure local veterans have a convenient local source for medical care. Instead of driving to a Veterans Affairs hospital out of town, veterans can get health care in the local Boston Street clinic.

The facility is an enduring tribute to former U.S. Rep. John Tierney who fought to get federal money for the clinic after vowing he would ensure no veteran living in the Sixth Congressional District had to travel more than 15 miles from home to receive care.

U.S. Rep. Seth Moulton has worked to provide support for the clinic and fellow veterans who use its services, including mental health counseling and other help available in part through interactive technology connecting the clinic with other medical offices.

Patten’s efforts and the Lynn clinic’s success buttresses work by the Lynn Housing Authority and Neighborhood Development to end homelessness among local veterans. Combine these efforts  with strong commitments to veterans in surrounding communities, including Saugus, Swampscott and Revere, then it is clear strong potential exists to do more for veterans.

This potential is only limited by the imagination and drive of veterans old and young, women and men, representing the full spectrum of veterans.

New efforts on the part of veterans can begin with Moulton obtaining the federal resources needed to conduct a valuable “hyper survey” of Lynn area and North Shore veterans. This study can assess in detail and accurately gauge the needs and challenges facing veterans.

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So much more can be done on behalf of veterans.

Lynn English High School’s Marine Corps Junior Reserve Officers’ Training Corps cadets can be harnessed to provide services to veterans beyond the good work the students already perform under Sgt. Major Ken Oswald’s leadership.

Older veterans need companionship assistance and there is a historic need for young people to assist in oral history projects aimed at preserving the memories and experiences of the few remaining World War II veterans as well as Korean War veterans.

There is also a compelling need for younger veterans to have opportunities to define and shape the services and assistance they need. They can work with Moulton, Patten and other veterans affairs experts, including Lynn Veterans Service Director Michael Sweeney, to outline long-range veterans assistance plans.

Veterans have done their share for their country. But the work to be done on their behalf is just beginning.

Swampscott gets reel about addiction

PHOTO BY BOB ROCHE
Swampscott Police Chief Ronald Madigan addresses the crowd in the Swampscott High School auditorium.

By GAYLA CAWLEY

SWAMPSCOTT — If only I had checked on him sooner, maybe I could have saved him, Swampscott Firefighter Chris DiPietro told a crowd of town residents about his brother Ryan, whom he lost to a drug overdose a year ago.

“If Only” was also the title of a short film shown to residents at Swampscott High School Thursday night, which highlights the dangers of prescription drug and opioid misuse and abuse. The film was presented by the Mark Wahlberg Foundation, and was produced by Executive Director James Wahlberg, who also spoke about his recovery from addiction.

The screening was followed by an interactive discussion about drug use and addiction, featuring a panel of local experts, a licensed physician, people in recovery from addiction and those who have a family member struggling with the disease. Outside of the panel, DiPietro was one of the few featured speakers who spoke about losing a family member to an overdose.

DiPietro said his brother, Ryan, enjoyed sports, music, comic books, hanging out with friends and loved his family. At some point in his life though, he said Ryan took a wrong turn that led him down a path of destruction and ultimately, his death. He said many people don’t realize the impact addiction has on families, the fighting and yelling, and countless sleepless nights where a mother and father wait up for their child to come home. Often, they don’t.

He said he found his brother after a fatal overdose on Feb. 16, 2016, the day before his birthday. DiPietro had gone with his wife and son to visit Ryan at his parents’ house. As he entered the house, he said he could smell a faint odor, but couldn’t explain what it was. First, he checked in the bedroom after calling out for Ryan, and then the TV room, where he could see him on the floor, more than likely dead for a few hours.

DiPietro attempted CPR and then called 911. First responders arrived within minutes. He said he goes on and on about that day, asking what he could have done differently.

“I like to go on and say as a professional firefighter and first responder, I’m trained in overdose response,” he said. “However, no training could prepare me for the loss of a loved one, such as my brother.”

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Bryanna Snow, 27, a Swampscott resident, lost her 22-year-old brother, Eric, almost two years ago to a heroin overdose. It was his first relapse. Nine months later, she lost her mother to addiction. She spoke to be courageous on her family’s behalf and try to prevent another family from suffering like hers.

When Snow lost her grandfather to cancer, she said the family received lots of support. When her brother died, it was a different story. Nobody called, she said, and nobody came by. People wouldn’t make eye contact with her in public.

“And I thought, this agony I’m feeling — how can anyone treat me this way and not understand how much this hurts, how much I want to hear his name, how much I want to feel connected with the world, because when this happens, you don’t feel human anymore,” Snow said. “You feel like you’ve lost a piece of your heart and you’ll never get it back.”

Toby Channen, a Salem resident, said she was one of the lucky ones. Her son, Jacob, who she didn’t know at the time was a part-time marijuana dealer in college, got hooked on opioids after a drug transaction went wrong. He was led down a dark path in the woods one night with a gun to his head, thinking that he was going to die. Instead, the people took the gun to beat Jacob to a pulp, breaking every bone in his face, except for his jaw.

Channen said receiving that 4:30 a.m. call was what she thought was her worst nightmare. She picked him up, took him home and to a doctor. He was given opioid pain pills and got hooked. He went back to college to finish out his freshman year and switched his major from criminal justice to becoming an opioid addict. He flunked out and for the next three years, she said, the family didn’t know what his problem was, until one of Jacob’s friends broke the code of silence among peers and told her that her son was doing more than smoking pot.

“Would you as a peer be willing to risk your friendship to save your friend’s life like my son’s friend did?” Channen said. “I hope you too can be a hero.”

From then on, Channen said a long road of recovery began. Jacob did get into treatment, after she gave him an ultimatum, but he relapsed 20 months later. Fortunately, he went right back into treatment, and the family went down to surprise him for his one year of sobriety last month. Before he got into treatment, she said she spent every waking moment being paralyzed with fear that she was going to find him dead from a heroin overdose.

“We can only live one day at a time,” she said. “One day at a time. Will I ever be able to breathe again? No, of course not, but that doesn’t mean we can’t live effectively and healthy. I will, however, be able to exhale now.”

Maureen Cavanagh, of Magnolia New Beginnings, a panelist, spoke about the importance of delaying first use of drugs to prevent the likelihood of addiction. Dr. Jeffrey Gold, another panelist, spoke about how mental illness often underlies addiction, whether it is ADHD or bipolar disorder. He spoke about the importance of continually checking on the wellbeing of kids, and just letting them be kids, when they’re under so much pressure.

Alex Costa, a recovering drug addict, said it was important to stop prescribing opioid pain medication for instances such as getting wisdom teeth pulled or for an injured wrist. Michael Duggan, CEO of Wicked Sober, and recovering drug addict, said he got hooked on pain medication after injuring his wrist. That morphed into heroin addiction. He said the real drug dealers are the pharmaceutical companies.

In Swampscott, in the past 24 months there were 42 overdoses and 13 of those were fatal, according to Police Chief Ronald Madigan.

The Overdose Response Team in town was formed by the police department in 2016. Members include police officers, school and town officials, and fire officials.

Following overdoses Detective Rose Cheever, Officer Brendan Reen, and Mary Wheeler, of Healthy Streets Outreach Program, go to residences to conduct “door knocks,” or follow-ups with the families afterward.

Madigan said work has been done to turn away from drug use as simply a crime and recognizing it as the problem of addiction. The focus instead has shifted to getting people help and into treatment, he said.


Gayla Cawley can be reached at gcawley@itemlive.com. Follow her on Twitter @GaylaCawley

 

‘We are celebrating by being here to serve’

ITEM PHOTO BY OWEN O’ROURKE
Dr. Alina Reznik, an optometrist at Lynn Community Eye Care Services, talks about International Women’s Day.

By LEAH DEARBORN

LYNN — Solidarity for International Women’s Day took many different forms on Wednesday.

Women were encouraged to take the day off from work, avoid shopping and wear red as part of A Day Without a Woman, an offshoot of the Women’s March that drew out thousands of protesters in January.

For many women across the North Shore, however, taking a break from the daily grind wasn’t an option.

“I think if we weren’t here, women would suffer and that’s not contributing to the cause,” said Cindy StegerWilson, director of marketing and communications at Lynn Community Health Center. “We are celebrating by being here to serve the women in our community.”

Lynn Community optometrist Dr. Alina Reznik said she sees too many patients to even consider taking a day off.

Instead, Reznik urged that women honor the event by taking care of themselves and their health.  

Education coordinator Teresa Martinez of North Shore Family Daycare in Lynn said she didn’t know of any employees who elected to stay home.

“There’s a better way to show support other than by calling out,” she said.

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A few businesses in the area did opt to keep their doors closed.

“By ensuring that women have pay equity, a livable wage and paid leave, businesses can demonstrate that their long-term actions align with the values we are standing up for on this day,” said a Facebook post by Salem diner The Ugly Mug.

Others, such as Deanne Healey, president of the Peabody Area Chamber of Commerce, were less sure of the ideal way to mark the occasion.  

“I have conflicted feelings,” said Healey. “I applaud the point they’re trying to make. It’s just difficult to pull off. It’s even harder as a small business.”

Diane Calver, owner of DiHard Fitness in Peabody, employs almost entirely women.   

She said that while everyone came into work on Wednesday, the business will host an all-female spin class dedicated to International Women’s Day on Friday.

“I’m a hardworking female myself,” said Calver. “Anything to do with helping women, I’m all for.”

On ‘A Day Without a Woman,’ where will you be?


Leah Dearborn can be reached at ldearborn@itemlive.com.

Geraldine C. Agocs, 92

WAKE FOREST, N.C.Geraldine C. (Sobocinski) Agocs, age 92, of Wake Forest, N.C., former longtime resident of Lynn, Salem and Hamilton, passed away on Friday, March 3, 2017 at Duke Raleigh Hospital in Raleigh, N.C.

She was born on Jan. 11, 1925 in Salem, the daughter of the late Constantine and Aniela (Zawacka) Sobocinski. She was raised and educated in Salem and graduated from Salem High School, Class of 1942.

She worked as a secretary at Hytron in Salem and later at John Hancock in Lynn.

She lived in Lynn for 38 years, moving to Hamilton in June 2000 to live with her son, John and his family. Together, they moved to Wake Forest, N.C., in 2008. Jerri was a parishioner of St. Pius V in Lynn, St. Paul’s in Hamilton and St. Catherine of Sienna in Wake Forest. She will be remembered by her family as a very pious and compassionate woman who loved her family very much.

She was predeceased by her husband of 38 years, Lewis A. Agocs in 1986. She is survived by her three sons, Alan Agocs and his wife Kim of Brownfield, Maine, David Agocs and his wife Sandy of Lynn and John Agocs and his wife Abbie of Wake Forest, N.C.; her four grandchildren, Robert Agocs, Bob Esbjorn, Daniel Agocs and Rebecca Agocs, as well as her four great-grandchildren, Brianna Esbjorn, Cameron Esbjorn, Ella Agocs and Lilah Agocs also survive her.

Service information: Family and friends are invited to attend calling hours on Thursday, March 9, 2017 from 4-8 p.m. at CUFFE-MCGINN Funeral Home, 157 Maple St., Lynn, MA 01904. Her funeral will begin on Friday, March 10, 2017 at 8 a.m. at the funeral home, with a Mass of Christian burial to follow at 9 a.m. at St. Pius V Church, 215 Maple St., Lynn, MA 01904. Burial will follow in Pine Grove Cemetery on Boston Street in Lynn. In lieu of flowers, donations are requested to St. Pius V Religious Education, Attn: Deborah, 215 Maple St., Lynn, MA 01904. Please visit Cuffemcginn.com for directions or to sign the online guest book.

Bertha Sweeney, 89

LYNN — Bertha Rose Marie (Bedard) Sweeney, of Lynn, died Sunday, March 5, 2017, surrounded by her loving family, in the Kaplan Family Hospice House in Danvers after a brief illness. She was the wife of the late Kenneth E. Sweeney.

Born in Salem on Feb. 7, 1928, she was the daughter of the late Arthur and Ida (Plourde) Bedard. She was raised in Lynn and Salem, and had lived in Lynn for the greater part of her life. She was a graduate of St. Jean Baptiste High School in Lynn. In 2015, she moved to Brookdale Assisted Living in Danvers, and was very happy being part of the community there. She loved the connections she made there with staff and residents alike.

A homemaker, Bertha had worked at Lynn Hospital in her earlier years. She was a communicant of St. Pius V Church, Lynn. She enjoyed knitting, bingo, and going to casinos. She took frequent trips on the casino boat out of Lynn, and enjoyed monthly get-togethers with her friends. She was devoted to her family, and will be greatly missed.

She is survived by her nine children and their spouses; Richard Sweeney and Jan Whalen of Lynn, James and Ann Sweeney of Lynn, Patricia and Edmund Poole of Fitzwilliam, N.H., Catherine and Glen Davis of Lynn, Edward and Geraldine Sweeney of Derry, N.H., Elizabeth and Thomas Daley of Georgetown, William and Ana Sweeney of Peabody, Mary and Daniel Vienneau of Groveland, and Margaret and Robert Conway of Lynn; as well as many grandchildren and great-grandchildren and numerous nieces and nephews; and her siblings; Rena Bastarache of Lynn, Roland Bedard of Lynn, and Henry Bedard of Danvers. She was predeceased by her siblings; Lucille Melanson, Lucien Bedard, Rita D’Entremont, Muriel Kennedy, Louis Bedard, and Irene Despres.

Service information: Her funeral will be held on Thursday at 8 a.m. from the SOLIMINE Funeral Home, 426 Broadway (Rt. 129), Lynn, followed by a funeral Mass at 9 a.m. in St. Pius V Church, Lynn. Relatives and friends are respectfully invited. Visiting hours are Wednesday from 4-8 p.m. Burial will be private. In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to Kaplan Family Hospice House, 78 Liberty St., Danvers, MA 01923. Directions and guestbook at Solimine.com.