A Union City man who reportedly admitted to tossing lit matches on his sleeping relative in his apartment, causing a massive blaze that killed his 1-and-a-half-year-old son and displaced multiple families, received a five-year prison sentence Feb. 23, according to NJ.com.
The March 4, 2017 blaze damaged eight residential buildings and 20 apartments, according to a press release later that month from the Hudson County Prosecutor’s Office. Over 80 residents were affected or displaced by the fire, which began at 1404 Summit Ave., the HCPO said in that release. It also severely damaged the nearby 119-year-old Sts. Joseph and Michael Church.
The 27-year-old man, who reportedly admitted to drinking alcohol and smoking marijuana on that night, pleaded guilty in Nov. 2017 to reckless manslaughter charges in his son’s death, NJ.com said. A 21-year-old was charged and reportedly plead guilty to reckless manslaughter as well, and faces three years in prison when he is sentenced this month, the site reported.
The child’s mother and other family members were able to escape with the couple’s 5-month-old daughter, according to media reports.
West New York, Secaucus place armed officers in public schools
Two weeks after a gunman opened fire at a Parkland, Fla. school, killing 17 people, both West New York and Secaucus have placed armed police officers in all their public schools.
West New York’s school security initiative places armed police officers inside all the town’s public schools, according to a town press release issued Feb. 26.
“With recent school shootings and violent incidents, I felt it was a top priority to safeguard not only our children, but our teachers, staff, and parents,” West New York Mayor Felix Roque said in the release. “We simply cannot leave our schools without protection; we had to get ahead of any possible incidents...our hope is that we become a model for other cities throughout New Jersey.”
The Secaucus mayor and Town Council placed the officers in their schools after a meeting with the Secaucus Board of Education last week, according to a town press release.
“The town has agreed to provide an increased police presence in all schools pending further evaluation of security plans,” the release says.
“The safety and security of our students is a paramount concern for my administration, the school board and our police department,” Secaucus Mayor Michael Gonnelli said in the release. “I will continue to work with Jennifer Montesano, our superintendent of schools, to ensure the safety and security of our school systems. There is no higher priority to me than the safety of our children.”
The officers will remain in the schools, as the Secaucus Board of Ed evaluates what it wishes to do with school security going forward, according to Town Administrator Gary Jeffas.
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NAMI offers program for caregivers
NAMI Family-to-Family is a 12-week education program designed for caregivers who have an adult family member living with a mental illness. The program fosters learning, healing and empowerment among caregivers and has been described by some as “a journey of hope” and by many others as “a life changing experience. Classes will meet April 5 through June 21 at Christ Hospital, 176 Palisade Ave., Jersey City, every Thursday evening 6:30 – 9 p.m. Participation is available on a first come basis and free parking is available.
To register please contact Carmen at (201) 310-5828 or email firstname.lastname@example.org, or
Dana at (347) 729-3966 or email at email@example.com.
Register early. Space is limited.
Children given free flu vaccine
On Feb. 21 the township of West New York and Hackensack Meridian Health Palisades Medical Center teamed up to provide free flu vaccines to nearly 150 children. The flu shots were provided to children over the age of five at the West New York Town Hall.
“We are trying to save lives, and we are going to make sure that West New York is safe by preventing the spread of this potentially deadly virus,” said West New York Mayor Felix E. Roque, MD. “This flu season is very severe and, as a doctor, I can tell you that education is key to ensuring that our community is safe. We thank our partners at Hackensack Meridian Health Palisades Medical Center who have really stepped up to make a difference.”
Medical professionals from Hackensack Meridian Health Palisades Medical Center were on hand to speak with local parents and to provide flu education materials in English and Spanish.
“At Hackensack Meridian Health Palisades Medical Center, we are always pleased to help our local communities, and it is an integral part of our mission,” said Jesus Alfonso, MD, of Palisades Medical Associates. “We are proud to team with the Township of West New York in administering these much-needed flu vaccines to local during this challenging flu season.”
UBS Atrium Series presents the New Asia Chamber Music Society
The UBS Atrium Series continues its 15th season of free mid-day music on Wednesday, March 7 at 12:30 p.m.
The concert will take place in the Atrium, 1000 Harbor Boulevard in the Lincoln Harbor section of Weehawken and will feature world-class musicians from the New Asia Chamber Music Society (NACMS), which is committed to bringing audiences exceptional performances drawn from western chamber music and contemporary Asian music. Highlighted at this performance will be works for the erhu, also known as the Chinese violin or the Chinese two-stringed fiddle, which has been used in Chinese music for more than 1,000 years. This concert features the artistry of Wei-Yang Andy Lin, the artistic director and co-founder of the NACMS, who is gaining a reputation as one of the instrument’s finest players. He is also an accomplished violist and a founding member of the award-winning Amphion String Quartet.
Other featured artists in this concert include violinist Tien-Hsin Cindy Wu, violist En-Chi Cheng, and cellist Nan-Cheng Chen. The concert is free and open to the public and the venue is wheelchair accessible.
Free parking is available in the adjacent outdoor lot and public transportation options include NJ Transit Bus 158 as well as the Hudson Bergen Light Rail to Lincoln Harbor, and NY Waterway ferry to Lincoln Harbor. For directions and more info, please visit the HRPAC website - www.hrpac.org - or call the concert hotline at (201) 716-4540.