This year’s Borough Council reorganization saw some new faces on the dais and around the meeting room as the governing body reorganized for the New Year. I had been asked by some to commemorate the occasion as I did last year, with a poem. I don’t claim credit for being much of a poet, and in fact the somber ending to 2012 and the issues that many of our residents continue to deal with initially left me without much enthusiasm for a celebration.
In fact, on reflection, Little Silver’s people gave us all much to cheer in 2012, even during the worst of times. This is a town that will endure, because when the chips are down, our residents, employees and volunteers come through. Every time. Here is the address I delivered to those assembled at Borough Hall.
Where’s the poem, when we’ve been hurt, by Sandy’s wet attack?
Where’s the joy, when Frankenstorm, slouched in, took Santa’s sack?
Jon Bitman’s loss, had left us low, before she came ashore;
His passing hit us hard indeed, then Sandy gave us more.
A snow storm came before the power, came back to light us up -
No heat, no gas, no house, for some, no spoon, no plate, no cup.
Here’s the thing – we’re here tonight, planning for the year.
FEMA grants to help rebuild; our streets, at last, are clear.
Our people gave us confidence, Les Mathis stood his ground;
Dan Kelly takes his place this year, though Les will stick around,
Our firemen, our EMS – they answered every call,
Exhausted at the firehouse, from caring for us all.
With Frank Salerno at the helm, Pete Gibson at his side,
We got folks out, before the worst, the others safe inside.
Chief Dan took charge to guard our homes, the bad guys stayed outside,
While the ‘M’ states gave us troops to help - their smiles eased the ride.
Their chainsaws sharp – but safety first – our roadmen cleared the way;
Jim Gannon’s guys kicked butt, for us - improvement, day by day.
We volunteered, we looked to help; Wyoming came to town.
A truck with clothes, for those in need, they sure got spread around.
This year we’ll build on what we’ve done, so much was much improved,
Though finances were held in check, with austere measures moved.
Ball field ‘potties,’ as Suzy’d say, facilities built for all,
Emergency communiqués improved, long before the fall.
A quarter mil for Parker House, the county helped us out;
A safe new bridge, new woodland paths – please come check them out!
On council, Richard Scott, M.D., joins the borough’s leaders,
We welcome him, and others too, new faces, new ideas.
We’re smarter now, we learned a lot, though much is left to do,
Build up, or not? We’ll help our folks, to navigate the gloom.
So down, not out, and never fear, our people brought us through,
For there’s the poem, and strength this year – you - our Little Silver crew.
I wish each and ever one of you a joyous, healthy and prosperous 2013. I will close as I always do, by encouraging everyone with the time to volunteer to help your town in some way. And if you ever have an issue or a concern, a comment or a criticism, please call me at home at 732-576-8595, or send an email to me at firstname.lastname@example.org.