John W. Buzderewicz passed away on Friday, September 22 at the Boston Medical Center in Boston after a long and ongoing illness. He was 69 years old.
The beloved husband of
Marylou Kemp-Buzderewicz, he was born and raised in Chelsea, a son of the late
Joseph S. Buzderewicz, Sr. and Dorothy (Seeley) Buzderewicz. John attended school in Chelsea and graduated from Chelsea High School. He enlisted in the US Navyand served honorably during the Vietnam Era. He was a resident of Chelsea for mostof his life and resided in Quincy for the past 18 years. He worked for many years as asalesman for Eagle Electric Supply in Boston and later for Controller Services in Avon before retiring several years ago.
He was a member of the PPC of Chelsea and theChelsea Yacht Club where he was a past board director and past vice commodore. Hewas also a member of the American Legion Nickerson Post 382 in Squantum.
In his lifetime, John was a devoted husband to Marylou and doting grandfather of five, he enjoyed boating and socializing with his dock buddies at his yacht club.
He is survivedby his beloved wife of 11 years, Marylou Kemp-Buzderewicz; two cherished stepsons and their wives; Kenny Kemp and his wife, Christine of Billerica and Scott Kemp and his wife, Marina of Byron, MN. He was the adored grandfather “DziaDzia” and “Buzzy” to Jody, Jack and Kevin Kemp, Kealie and John Kemp; dear brother of Francis “Frannie”Buzderewicz and his wife, Pat of El Mirage, AZ, Robert Buzderewicz and his wife, Carla of Maine, Richard Buzderewicz of Chelsea and David Buzderewicz and his wife, Doreen of Hampton, NH, and the late Joseph S. Buzderewicz, Jr. He is also survived by severalloving nieces and nephews and extended family members.
Relatives are most kindly invited to attend a memorial gathering and remembrance service on Thursday, October 19 beginning at 12 noon at the
Frank A. Welsh & Sons Funeral Home, 718 Broadway, Chelsea. A prayer service will be begin at 1 p.m. concluding with military honors. In tribute to John’s love of boating on the “Sea Eagle,”those attending his last “Bon Voyage” are requested to dress with casual nautical attire. The Funeral Home is fully handicap accessible, ample parking opposite Funeral Home.
For directions or to send expressions of sympathy, please visit www.WelshFuneralHome.com
Anthony Memorial – Frank A. Welsh & Sons Chelsea, 617-889-2723
Of Boston’s North End
Betty (Goldmeer) Pisano of Boston’s North End died on October 4.
She was the beloved wife of the late Pasquale “Pat” Pisano; devoted mother of Cecile Leone and her husband, Luigi of Kingston, Marsha DeSantis and her husband, Phil of Marshfield, Denise Cipoletta and her husband, Joe of Florida, Elissa Pisano of Lynnfield and Roxane Bangs and her husband, Frederick of Lynnfield; dear sister of Joseph Goldmeer of Arizona and the late Charlotte Rasmussen and Morris Goldmeer; cherished grandmother of nine including the late Patrice Gioia, adoring great grandmother of 19, and great great grandmother of one great great grandchild. She is also survived by many loving nieces and nephews.
Funeral arrangements were by the Paul Buonfiglio & Sons-Bruno Funeral Home, Revere. Interment was private. For guestbook, please visit www.Buonfiglio.com
LTC Alfred A. “Smilin’ Al” Alvarez
Had long and distinguished military career
LTC Alfred A. “Smilin’ Al” Alvarez (retired) passed away at home on Monday, July 31 at the age of 93 surrounded by his loving family.
He was born on April 25, 1924 in Chelsea and was predeceased by his parents, Fred and Clara Alvarez and his older brother, Frederick. Losing his father at the age of six, his widowed mother raised three children during the Depression. Excelling at school, he skipped the sixth grade and was later editor of the High School newspaper. Attending Northeastern University, he joined the US Army shortly after the attack on Pearl Harbor and after stateside training joined the First
Infantry Division in England.
On D-Day, June 6, 1944, he went ashore on Omaha Beach, Normandy and fought his way inshore. Following the Normandy landing, he participated in numerous battles including “Hurtgen Forest” and “the Battle of the Bulge.” He ended the war in Europe in Czechoslovakia in 1945.
Following his commission from OCS in 1949, he served two combat tours in the Korean War. In 1965, he served 18 months in the Dominican Republic conflict, then in 1967 he was in Bolivia confronting “Che Guevara” terrorists. In 1968-1969 as a LTC in the 7th Special Forces “Green Berets,” he served a combat tour in Vietnam where shortly after arriving in-country the helicopter he was riding in was hit by enemy fire and forced to make an emergency landing. He returned stateside and served in the XVIII ABN Corps until retiring in 1974 after 32 years in the Army. Following his retirement from the army, he served as North Carolina State Regional Director of Human Services and later as Cumberland County Master Planner, where he directed personnel assets for the local community.
Taking a plunge into retail merchandising, he was general manager of “The Capitol” department store. In addition to his normal work routine, he found time to help with education efforts at FTCC where he taught soldiers management subjects.
On the weekends, he served as a radio talk show host and later was successful writing and publishing military short stories. Inducted into the US Army OCS Hall of Fame at Fort Benning, Georgia in 2003 as well as selected as Military Analyst for National Geographic Society tours to France and England for D-Day 60th remembrance in 2004. He was honored at the National World War II Museum in New Orleans and named “Chevalier of the French Legion of D’Honneur” by the French government in 2008. He received the “Order of the Long Leaf Pine” from North Carolina Governor Holshouser. A charter member of the Airborne & Special Operations Museum in Fayetteville, he served as docent and participated in various speaking assignments to local and regional audiences.
His awards include: Combat Infantry Badge, Legion of Merit, (2) Bronze Stars for valor with Oak Leaf Clusters, Master Parachutist, United Nations Service Medal, Korean Service Medal, Presidential Service Medal, World War II Victory Medal, Gliderist Badge, Army Occupational Medal (Germany – Japan), Belgian and French Fouragere, Vietnam Service and Campaign Medal, Meritorious Service Medal, Republic of Korea Presidential Unit Citation, Pacificador – Brazil Medal, Armed Forces Expeditionary Medal, National Defense Service Medal (1st OLC) and 14 Battle Stars.
He is survived by his sister, Mary (age 97), his wife, Florence (to whom he was married for 68 years), his son, Commander (USN, Ret.) Michael and his wife, Catherine, daughter, Colleen Wellons and her husband, William, son Kevin and his wife, Cynthia and son, Sean and his wife, Amy. In addition, he leaves 10 grandchildren and two great-grandchildren.
A true warrior who put country first in time of war, in peacetime he was happiest surrounded by family and friends and will forever be fondly remembered for his sense of humor and stories.
“ Do not fear death, but rather the unlived life, you don’t have to live forever, you just have to live … And he did.”
A memorial service was held on Saturday, August 5. Burial with full military honors will be held at Arlington National Cemetery on Wednesday, December 20 at 3 p.m. In lieu of flowers, the family has requested that donations be made to the “Airborne and Special OPS Museum” or to the” Veterans of Foreign Wars.” “Good Night Sweetheart.”
The 30th Annual Chelsea Chamber of Commerce $10,000 Pot of Gold is around the corner. The event will be held on Wednesday, October 18, 2017 at Anthony’s of Malden, 105 Canal Street, Malden, MA. It will be an outstanding evening filled with great networking opportunities, delicious food and Back to the 80s fun, all while supporting your Chamber. This is the longest running major fundraiser for the Chelsea Chamber! Proceeds greatly contribute to the important work the Chelsea Chamber of Commerce does for the business community in Chelsea. First prize is $10,000. Only 250 will be sold and can be purchased by Chamber members and nonmembers alike. Act now and you could be the next $10,000 Pot of Gold winner!
Chairs Sue Gallant and Arthur Arsenault are working with their committee to make the 30th Pot of Gold the best yet! The Chamber will be going back to the 80s when it all started celebrating all the iconic music, fads and outfits from that decade. Prizes will be awarded to the best outfits from the 80s! Get creative and let’s see what you can put together! Maybe you will be one of our prize winners!
We also have opportunities to purchase raffle tickets to win Megaraffle baskets that are each valued at over $500. Themed baskets include Nights on the Town with Celtics, Bruins or Red Sox tickets, Ultimate Tailgate Package and a North Shore experience to name a few. We will also raffle off an Instant Wine Cellar where one person will win enough wine to start their own wine Cellar as well as a 50/50 raffle! So many great prizes to win besides the big prize of $10,000!
Tickets are $175.00 each. The ticket price includes one entry in the drawing for a chance to win the $10,000 top prize, opportunities to win one of our many fabulous door prizes, one dinner which will include a delicious meal of surf and turf and open bar. Additional dinner tickets can be purchased for $60. Festivities start at 6:00pm with dinner at 7:00pm and the first ticket drawn at 8pm.
The Chamber would like to thank the following for sponsoring this important fundraiser for the Chelsea Chamber of Commerce:
Chelsea Bank, a division of East Cambridge Savings Bank
MGH Health Center
Arsenault & Cline, CPAs, Stop & Compare Supermarkets, Cameron Real Estate Group, Hispanic American Institute, North Shore Advisory Group
Coprico Printing, Cataldo Ambulance, Chelsea Community Cable Television, Fairmont Copley Plaza, El Planeta, Independent Newspaper Group
Sponsorships are still available. Your name will be included on the Chamber website, in social and print media and advertised throughout the event. What a great way to highlight your business to people from all over the North Shore!
Only 250 tickets will be sold, so get your tickets now! Check out the Chamber website at www.chelseachamber.org, call the office at 617-884-4877 or drop by 308 Broadway Chelsea today. Rich Cuthie, Executive Director of the Chamber, will be happy to help you pick that winning ticket number!
John J. Gerace of Acton passed away peacefully on Thursday, July 28 at UMass Medical Center surrounded by his loving family after a brief illness. He was 56 years old.
John was born on April 30, 1960 in a military hospital at Camp Lejeune in Jacksonville, North Carolina. He attended Chelsea High School and was a delivery truck driver for Office Source in Burlington for 18 years. He loved movies, especially military movies, and was very interested and well read on anything military. In his spare time, John enjoyed fishing and collecting comic books. John was a devoted husband and father and will be greatly missed.
John is survived by his beloved wife of 28 years, Rita M. (McAleavey) Gerace; his daughter, Jillian A. Gerace of Acton; his father, Harry L. Gerace, Sr. of Bedford and his mother, Ruth M. (McCarthy) Gerace of Jacksonville, NC. He is also survived by his siblings: Francis X. Gerace and his wife, Martina of Winchendon, Harry L. Gerace, Jr. and his wife, Mercy of East Boston, Brian K. Gerace and his wife, Donna of Attleboro, Helen A. Gerace of Acton, Joseph A. Gerace and his wife, Ute of Jacksonville, NC, and Marion R. Jones and her husband, Anthony of Wakefield; and his godmother, Jane Benduzek of Weymouth. He is also survived by several aunts, uncles, nieces and nephews.
Funeral services are private. A celebration of John’s life will be held at a later date. Mercadante Funeral Home & Chapel, 370 Plantation St., Worcester was honored to have assisted the family with arrangements. In lieu of flowers, contributions in his memory may be made to the American Heart Association, 300 5th Avenue, Waltham, MA 01701 (www.heart.org).
Thomas R. Cromwell of Virginia Beach, Virginia, formerly of Chelsea, died early on Saturday morning, July 30. He was 58 years old.
Born in Chelsea and a resident here until moving to Virginia in 1992, Thomas worked as a chef in local restaurants including Bennigans and Houlihans.
He was the beloved husband of Maureen K. Lee of Lynn; devoted father of Thomas Richard Henry Cromwell of Lynn and Keturah Joan Jackson of Washington, DC; loving brother of Doreen Hornbeak and her husband, Steven of Virginia Beach, Virginia, Beverly Martin-Ross and her husband, Larry of Chelsea, Charlie Martin of Lynn, Maurice Cromwell of Chelsea, John Cromwell of Hubbardston, Paula Cromwell of Chelsea, John Martin and his wife, Delia of Chelsea, Richelle Cromwell and her husband, Larry of Chelsea, Joan Cromwell and her husband, Kenneth Umemba of Chelsea, Darren Cromwell and his wife, Sue of Lincoln, Gregory Carter of Medford and the late Andrea Martin. He is also lovingly survived by a host of aunts, uncles, nieces and nephews.
Funeral arrangements were by the Smith Funeral Home, 125 Washington Avenue, Chelsea.
To send a message of condolence to his family, please visit www.smithfuneralhomes.com
Several city councillors, two most prominently, are praising a process that played out on Monday night where the non-profits CAPIC and North Suffolk Mental Health appeared to answer questions from the body about how taxpayer funds are being used.
The conflict between the Council and some non-profits began several weeks ago when Councillor Damali Vidot put in for a hearing with all non-profits getting City money before passing the City Budget. That led to controversy last week when the Budget was passed prior to such a meeting taking place, in opposition to the wishes of Vidot and Councillor Judith Garcia.
Both this week said that non-profits taking City taxpayer money should be expected to come before the Council during budget time, like many City departments do, to give presentations on what the money is being used for and if its goals are being met. Both councillors said they would like to identify ways to perhaps use some of the non-profit money for other purposes.
Key to the pushback from the non-profit community was Roca, Inc. and its CEO Molly Baldwin, who submitted a front-page statement last week on the issue. Roca receives a budget earmark of $221,000 per year that is only a “just in case” expenditure. The money is part of the 10-Point Plan on Crime and was instituted as a safeguard for Roca against the loss of state grant funds. The idea is that if the state fails to fund Roca’s grant for work it does with the City, the $221,000 earmark would kick in. The money has never had to be used to date.
Roca also receives in excess of $100,000 from the City for contracted services to clean City streets and buildings with the organization’s work crews.
That said, both Vidot and Garcia told the Record that the money is tied up by the earmark and could be used for other things, such as Little League scholarships or Chelsea Pride funding or Chelsea Community Center Scholarships. They said that families with children who don’t qualify for Roca and are priced out of other activities could better use the money.
“How am I as a city councillor supposed to feel about $220,000 or any other amount of taxpayer money without knowing exactly where that money is going?” asked Vidot. “I want to know about the taxpayer dollars we spend and particularly with Roca when they have the social capital to raise money on their own. We have sports programs and parents who can’t pay to get their kids in them. It’s about transparency and accountability for all non-profits and leveling the playing field. If we catch our young people when there are impressionable, we can prevent the cycle so that they won’t require a program like Roca.”
Roca primarily serves high-risk young men who have come out of jail and are at risk for returning, as well as a young mothers program.”
Garcia agreed with Vidot and said asking questions of some of the more storied non-profits in the City doesn’t amount to an attack on them or an inquisition.
“I think it’s important to acknowledge it’s a new City Council,” she said. “It’s not an attack on any organization or Roca. We’re six new elected officials. When you present a budget to us, we want to have an understanding of each line item and how it’s being utilized. That’s not unreasonable. It’s not like in the past where they gave us the budget document and we sign off on it. Now we have this process going on. That should have happened in the first place. It’s a new Council and we should have questions. No one should be offended by that. We can’t just sign off on everything without knowing what it is.”
Garcia went on to say that the idea to spread out some of the non-profit money came from a recent event she attended at Chelsea High School. She said after the awards, six seniors were outside and seemed very upset. After inquiring, she learned that they were down because they could no longer attend the Chelsea Community Center (CCC) where they had hung out for years.
Because they had now graduated high school, they no longer qualified for the student rate and would have to pay $300, which none of them had.
“They had essentially aged out and said they didn’t have anywhere to go now,” she said. “They were standing there saying, ‘Oh my God. What are we going to do all summer.’ I talked to the CEO and he said they couldn’t afford to do much to help, but he suggested maybe a scholarship program could be put in place. I thought that was a great idea. If we can put money aside for Roca, why no come up with a grant program for this too? That is the population right now that is so vulnerable, the 17 and 18-year-olds. It’s not that we don’t want to help Roca, but maybe we can spread out that money to other kids that need it.”
Back at the City Council on Monday, CAPIC Director Bob Repucci and Kim Hanton of North Suffolk Mental Health engaged the Council for almost two hours on the new treatment on demand services being used in conjunction with Navigators to help those addicted in Bellingham Square.
So far, Repucci said, they have placed 23 people in transitional housing after a detox program and have six that are employed and paying rent.
Both CAPIC and North Suffolk receive $125,000 for their contracts with the City.
CAPIC’s Bob Repucci and North Suffolk’s Kim Hanton were two of the first non-profits in the City to appear through a new process that, each year at budget time, will have those non-profits that receive taxpayer dollars appear before the City Council to detail their programs and goals.
CHS softball team to host tourney game this Saturday
The Chelsea High softball team, which completed a fine 12-4 season, will host a first round game of the Division 3 North Sectional of the MIAA state softball tournament Saturday.
The Lady Red Devils, who are the eighth seed among the 24 teams in the D-3 North sectional, will play the winner of today’s preliminary round contest between Mystic Valley and Winthrop.
The first pitch for Saturday’s encounter is set for 4:00.
Best finish ever for CHS girls at state track event
It was a big day for Chelsea High School girls track at the Eastern Mass. Division 2 championship meet this past Sunday at Norwell High School.
The Lady Red Devils racked up 15 points to place 17th in D-2, Chelsea’s highest-ever finish.
The outstanding performer of the day for Chelsea was senior Mariama Kamara who took second place in the 100 dash with a time of 12.88. Mariama narrowly was defeated by indoor state champion Ally Isley of Wellesley.
“The Chelsea girls’ team never has had a girl finish this high in any event,” said CHS coach Mark Martineau. “This is an amazing achievement for a senior who was battling injuries most of the season. She has come back at the right time and does not seem to have missed a step.”
By finishing second, Mariama now will participate in the All-State championship this coming Saturday at Westfield State University to compete against the best sprinters from all the divisions throughout Massachusetts.
Another outstanding performance was turned in by sophomore Martin Simon. Martin brought home sixth place medals in two events, the long jump with a leap of 16’-7.5” and the triple jump with a distance of 34’-11.25”. Simon’s triple jump was both a personal and a new CHS school record.
“Martin has been improving every week as the season has gone on,” said Martineau. “A special thanks goes to her jumps coach, Kanku Kabongo, who has been instrumental in the amazing performances that Martin and the rest of the jumping team has accomplished this season.”
Martin will have to wait to hear (as the Record was going to press) whether she has qualified for the All-State meet.
Also scoring points for the Chelsea girls was the 4 x 100 relay team of Kamara, Simon, Katherine Cabral, and Owliyo Mohamud. The foursome finished eighth with a clocking of 51.45.
Cabral also competed in the 100m (30th, 13.78) and the 400m (10th, 61.64) and Mohamud also competed in the 400 (18th, 63.53).
For the boys’ side, the sole Red Devil qualifier for the state competition was junior Adriel Cedano, who finished 13th (among a field of 35 competitors) in the triple jump with a personal record distance of 40’-3.5”.
CHS baseball team wraps up season
The Chelsea High baseball team concluded its 2016 season this past week, dropping a 10-2 decision at Greater Lowell.
Eduardo Nunez went 2-for-2 for the Red Devils with a double, two walks, a stolen base, and an RBI. Estarlin Martinez was 1-for-3 with an RBI single.
Luis Jiminez was chosen to the Commonwealth Athletic Conference All-Star team at the recent meeting of the league’s coaches. Luis led the Red Devils with 13 runs scored and 17 stolen bases in 18 games. Jiminez also recorded two of the three Chelsea victories on the pitching mound.
by Bob Morello
Bruins announce camps and preseason
Fans looking for a bit of local hockey flavor during this long off-season break can savor the announcement from the Boston Bruins revealing the club’s seven-game 2016 preseason schedule, which will begin on Monday, September 26 (7:00pm) against the Columbus Blue Jackets at TD Garden. The Bruins will remain on Garden ice for their Wednesday, September 28 matchup with the Detroit Red Wings (7:00pm), in a home-and-home series that will take them to Detroit’s Joe Louis Arena on Friday, September 30 (7:00pm). The road trip will continue with a stop at Philadelphia’s Wells Fargo Center on Saturday, October 1 (7:00pm) to take on the Flyers, followed by a trip north of the border to Quebec City, Canada, to face the Montreal Canadiens on Tuesday, October 4 (7:00pm). Quebec City is currently among those vying for an NHL expansion team to replace their former Nordiques who played in the NHL from 1979-95.
The Columbus Blue Jackets will host Boston at Nationwide Arena on Thursday, October 6 (7:00pm), with the Bruins finishing off their preseason schedule on Garden ice, with their seventh and final game on Saturday, October 8 versus the Philadelphia Flyers in a rare 5:00 pm start. With three games on Garden ice, fans will get a good look at what they can expect from this season’s roster.
The team also announced the preliminary schedule for their 2016 Rookie Camp, which begins on Thursday, September 15, and their 2016 Training Camp, which begins on Thursday, September 22. The full rookie camp and training camp rosters will be announced at a later date.
Final rosters for the World Cup of Hockey (September 17 to October 1) to be played in Toronto, have been released. Bruins players participating include: Patrice Bergeron and Brad Marchand (Team Canada); Tuukka Rask (Team Finland); David Krejci and David Pastrnak (Team Czech Republic); Loui Eriksson (Team Sweden); Zdeno Chara and Dennis Seidenberg (Team Europe). Also named as assistant coach for Team Canada is Bruins’ head coach Claude Julien.
At least three major housing proposals for the downtown Chelsea area have come into the City over the last month just as City Manager Tom Ambrosino has proposed to spend millions on the Business District and put out a call for more and better housing above existing businesses.
The City’s proposed spending plan, along with the quick response by developers, could radically transform the Broadway Business District in short time.
“We’re bullish on Chelsea; that’s for sure,” said Paul Scapicchio, a former Boston City Councilor who has proposed to redevelop the Choice Thru Education building on Pearl Street. “I’m high on Chelsea. It has had great leadership and has new great leadership that is doing things right. You go into Chelsea and City Hall and people are helpful and realistic and goal-oriented.”
Ambrosino has put a Capital Improvement Plan in to the City Council and a hearing will be held on that matter May 9. Within that plan, however, is a $400,000 stipend for mapping out the changes this coming summer. Next year, Ambrosino has called for spending $5 million in Capital funds on the Broadway corridor – improving pedestrian access, installing historic lighting and maybe even doing a storefront improvement program.
Along with that City investment that Ambrosino hopes to make – if the Council approves – has been a call for more housing development above the businesses on Broadway and the surrounding streets.
“I am absolutely supportive of creating some residential opportunities on top of retail buildings, particularly on the opposite side of Broadway,” he said. “If we want to create the vibrant downtown we need to create more residences in the downtown. Philosophically, I can appreciate that there is a problem with parking there because there is none. However, if you want to revive the downtown, I don’t know of any other way to do it. You have to take the good with the bad.”
Scapicchio and his business partner, Mark Heuber, have already purchased the Choice Thru Education building for $650,000 and plan to add three floors on top of the existing building (going from 15 feet to 45 feet) – which will be a retail use, perhaps a restaurant.
The plan calls for 20 units on the top three floors, with one studio, 10 one-bedrooms and nine two-bedrooms. There will be 11 parking spaces in a basement parking garage and ample bike racks.
It will first be heard by the Zoning Board of Appeals on May 10.
“We’ve been wanting to do a project in Chelsea that is right and we think we’ve found it,” Scapicchio said, adding that they have financial backing from East Boston Savings Bank. “A healthy community is a place people live, work and do their shopping. That’s what happens here in Chelsea and something we want to happen…There’s a demographic out there now that young people and others that aren’t interesting in using cars. The aren’t using cars as much as people once did…You’re in downtown Chelsea, and you’re close to downtown Boston. People can get there. You don’t necessarily need a car.”
That seems to be the mantra of the potential “revised” downtown area that the City hopes to create. It would be one where cars aren’t used as often and people have access to public transportation, pedestrian routes and even bicycle paths.
“There are changes in the way that people live,” said Ambrosino. “The old standard of two cars per unit may not be the reality these days, especially with young working professionals. Honestly, if you live in downtown Chelsea, you don’t need a vehicle to get to downtown Boston. The City has a fabulous transportation network that’s about to become even better with the Silver Line.”
The second proposal is smack dab on Broadway, at the Broadway Mini-Mall.
There, owner David Peach is looking to dramatically refurbish the old Masonic Building with Eastie developer Jay Duca.
Peach, who operates a bakery in the basement, would spend $3.1 million to renovate the existing three floors and to add a fourth floor. The plan calls for renovating the basement and first floor commercial/retail areas and adding 15 units of housing on the second, third and fourth floors. Two units would be affordable units.
There would be two one-bedrooms and three two-bedroom units on each of the residential floors. The housing would replace an old Masonic Theatre that still exists but is not safe to use.
Peach needs 31 spaces for the proposed project, but only has four – meaning he will need zoning relief for 27 spaces.
Therein, though, lies the idea behind the new downtown and the attraction of living in a vibrant commercial district and not owning a car. That’s the hope, of course.
The third plan by Jimmy Chan hopes to create 16 units out of an existing eight units above Heller’s Liquors and other existing businesses in a building next to Bellingham Square.
That plan calls for four two-bedroom units and four one-bedroom units on floors two and three. The existing floor plan has eight, six-bedroom units on the two floors.
“Things are changing,” said Scapicchio. “I grew up in the North End and there were five units in a building and not one car. We’re going to have parking, but not the numbers you would have expected with this project 20 years ago.”
The Chelsea High boys basketball team got back to the .500 mark with a victory over North Shore Tech, 58-44, Tuesday evening at the CHS gym.
The Red Devils took control of the contest from the outset, grabbing a 13-6 lead after one quarter and expanding their advantage to a healthy 30-9 bulge at the half.
Chelsea continued to build its lead after the intermission, allowing CHS head coach Jay Seigal to use all of his players extensively in the final two frames.
Angel Alvarez paced the Red Devil scoring attack with 15 points. Steve Lacey (13 points) and Jahro Marshall (10 points) also reached double figures for Chelsea.
Chris Torrez hit for six points, Guillermo Zelata added five, Werner Mazariegos chipped in three, and the trio of Balmeiro Daveiga, Jaime Celorio, and Cobi Molina contributed two points apiece.
Last Thursday the Red Devils hosted Revere in a non-league tilt that has become a rivalry game for both schools in recent years, reminiscent of the many Battles of Broadway in which Chelsea and Revere engaged decades ago. A good crowd filled the CHS gym and were treated to an up-and-down contest that was a close encounter from the opening tip to the final buzzer.
Chelsea took a slim 18-16 lead in the opening period. Revere led 30-29 at the half and 50-46 after three frames. The final quarter saw the Red Devils make many runs at the Patriots in an effort to overcome the Revere edge, but strong free throw shooting down the stretch (the Patriots were 15-of-16 from the foul line on the night) fended off the Chelsea challenge.
Torrez led Chelsea with 16 points, followed by Marshall with 15, Lacey with 12, Alvarez with seven, Zelata with five, and Mazariegos with three.
“We played well in both games,” said Seigal, whose squad now stands at 6-6 on the season. “Hopefully we can put together a bit of a winning streak to get into the state tournament.”
Chelsea hosts Lynn Tech Friday at 5:30 and travels to Whittier Monday. The Red Devils defeated both teams in their first meetings this season.
(The following essay was read aloud Monday as the winning Chelsea High essay at the annual Martin Luther King Jr. Awards Ceremony in Chelsea High School.)
My dream for breaking down barriers is to break the stereotype of a Latino girl that grew up in a city like Chelsea. In order to break the barrier, I want to become a radiation oncologist, to demonstrate that someone’s background does not affect their outcome in life. Today, people’s views of Latinos are based on how they are portrayed by the media, and in movies and television. They are portrayed as being violent, thieves, drunks, and full of disease. Sadly, people like Donald Trump advocate this stereotype to the public and turn the people against Hispanics. Whenever I enter a restaurant or store that is full of whites, all I get are glares full of hatred and disgust. These people assume that I fall into the stereotype of a “typical” Hispanic girl, without knowing anything about my character. I should be able to feel comfortable in any area, without worrying about having to deal with racism. My mother is a chef and has had her food rejected by some s imply because they did not trust an Hispanic to cook their food; t hey did not even give her food a chance. I want to just prove to the public that almost no Hispanic fall into the stereotype created by society.
Another stereotype created by modern society is of a girl from a “ghetto” city, such as Chelsea. Movies such as Eight Mile show the women of a ghetto as being pregnant young, having no respect for themselves and being an addict of a certain vice. On various occasions when I’ve met a new person, he or she couldn’t believe that I am from Chelsea, simply because I dress properly, speak without slang, and have not attempted to drop out. I even have family members in private schools in New Jersey and North Carolina who think of my siblings and me as ignorant. They also treat my cousins from Lynn as if they are uneducated. Despite m y better grades, my greater academic accomplishments, and completion of rigorous out of school programs, they will never new me as t heir equal solely due to living in Chelsea. My parents are constantly being urged by their friends to look after me because in their minds, the only triumph Chelsea girls obtain are getting pregnant by 16. My grades and extracurricular activities are completely ignored by many merely because of where I live.
I have worked hard and have only dedicated my time to school in order to hopefully one day achieve my dream of becoming a radiation oncologist. By becoming a radiation oncologist, I would show the public that race and residence has little to no impact on one’s future. It would how people to not believe the stereotype modern society has fabricated about me. Instead of judging by race or upbringing, I hope those people will learn to only deem others by identity and nature.
In our schools, children and teens will see that if a girl from Chelsea can become successful in life, maybe they can too, which will motivate them and give t hem hope. Maybe our schools will learn to have higher expectations for their students and give opportunities for all races.
Maybe in our homes, it would bring more pride to parents since just by telling my mother my career choice, her face lit up with glee. Maybe parents that are minorities will motivate their children if they see one of their peers has reached so far as becoming a doctor. Maybe homes will be filled with more positivity and hope if family members know society will accept them more and so they will not feel confined and restricted in t heir skin. Maybe teens will work harder in school and will spend more time at home study8ing than in the streets endangering their lives.
By becoming a radiation oncologist, I will demonstrate that Hispanics are committed and hard workers. I will show my community that skin color and ethnicity has no impact on a person’s path in life. My community would respect my hard work and position and people will realize that stereotypes barely describe a group of people; that it is unjust to assume one’s character simply because of race and background. Hopefully this will lead to less racism and discrimination in Chelsea, and more respect and pride.
One should not be judged at first glance merely because or ace or where one grew up. We should learn to judge someone only after getting to know her. People should get along with others with t heir same interests and hobbies, not because they have the same skin tone. People should be rivals only when they have strong differing opinions and viewpoints, not because they grew up in contrasting places.
Barriers don’t belong in a community since it will not function well as a whole. Stereotypes create barriers that lead to mistrust and hate. Barriers only complicate our daily lives and compromise the American identity of being a unified nation. A community that has peace and tranquility is the one that is most prosperous. Everyone needs to see eye to eye since it is for the best for the community and all selfish viewpoints must be set aside. When we get along with our neighbors, they are there when we need them. When we need a helping hand, our neighbors will be there. When we need to hear truthful advice, our neighbors will be there. When we need help shoveling snow or cleaning our lawn our neighbors will be there. In the end, it is better to have harmony with our community and neighbors. Prejudice and racism only creates the downfall of our community.
When the City took up the task last February of changing the Designated Port Area (DPA) on the Chelsea Creek so that some development could take place next to the Chelsea Street Bridge, all signs seemed to point to the fact that it was a no-brainer.
A plan to locate a parking garage for rental cars on the waterfront property next to the Bridge on Marginal Street was preliminarily planned to be moved to the other side of the street – with the City swapping land with the waterfront owner. That was going to unlock the Creek waterfront for another new hotel and park/recreation development after a lifetime of only industrial uses allowed on the Creek due to the DPA designation.
Many thought the state review, conducted by the Coastal Zone Management (CZM), would more than likely turn Chelsea’s way.
That was presumptive, it appears.
CZM issued a draft review of the Chelsea Creek waterfront in December, and removed several areas of the Creek from the DPA, but not the pieces the City had requested next to the Bridge – known as the Marginal Street and Eastern Avenue South parcels.
“CZM analysis indicates that the land in the Marginal Street and Eastern Avenue South planning units are in substantial conformance with all the physical suitability criteria in [state regulations],” read the report. “Therefore these planning units will remain in the DPA.”
Now, the hotel development is likely off, and City Manager Tom Ambrosino said they were rather disappointed with the news.
“We’re not happy with it at all,” he said. “I have sent a comment letter opposing the draft report, but no one expects the final report to differ from the draft. Our real hope with this whole process was that 270 Marginal St. would come out because we have a hotel developer wanting to develop a hotel there on the parcel right next to the Bridge. It’s the same hotel developer that has developed several other hotels here in Chelsea. We needed that because you can’t put a hotel in…a DPA. Unfortunately, that whole parcel is within the boundary and no hotel can go there unless it is out of the DPA.”
The City had also intended to build a small park there to promote public access to the waterfront.
To add salt to the wounds, the CZM actually enlarged its scope when conducting the review and looked at the entire DPA in Chelsea, from the PORT Park to the Forbes Site in Mill Hill.
In that larger review, they decided that the properties in Mill Hill should come out of the DPA – known as Railroad North (Forbes) and Railroad South (adjacent to the Burke Complex).
“CZM analysis of the land in the Railroad South planning unit indicates that while this area is in substantial conformance with the physical suitability criteria for possessing a topography that is conducive to industrial use…the land area does not possess a substantially developed shoreline which creates a functional connection to DPA waters,” read the report. “The shoreline in the Railroad South planning unit is comprised of a mix of tidal flats and salt marsh and is wholly devoid of structures which would provide a functional connection to the waterway.”
And for the Railroad North (Forbes) area, “Additionally, CZM analysis of the land in the Railroad North planning unit indicates that while this area is in substantial conformance with the physical suitability criteria for possessing a topography that is conducive to industrial use…the land area does not possess a substantially developed shoreline which creates a functional connection to DPA waters. To the contrary, this review found that the Railroad North planning unit is not in conformance with the substantially developed shoreline…is either undeveloped or bordered by coastal resource areas. CZM finds that although a portion of the Railroad North shoreline includes a bulkhead, the area lacks a functional connection to the DPA waterway because the waters adjacent to the bulkhead have shoaled.”
So, CZM found that the Railroad South and Railroad North, as well as the portion of the MBTA railroad associated with these, should be removed from the DPA. It was an outcome the City wasn’t even asking for. The area along the Creek on Eastern Avenue where Gulf Oil is located was not eligible to be reviewed and was not considered.
“They removed them because those parcels don’t belong there anyway,” said Ambrosino. “The one parcel we were hoping would come out [of the DPA] didn’t come out and we are disappointed.”
A final draft is expected in the coming months.
Meanwhile, a Waterfront Visioning Process began in December with residents and community groups giving input as to what they would like to see there. That effort, now, is hampered by the lack of options due to the DPA designation.
That process will continue, though, Ambrosino said.
“They have to be mindful to suggest things that are consistent with the fact it’s a DPA, but the process is an effort to start the conversation about a Harbor Plan,” he said.
To redevelop waterfront areas like Chelsea Creek, a municipality must prepare a Harbor Plan, and the City does not currently have one. The Visioning Group is the first step in that process and that is expected to last about six months.
Ambrosino said the Harbor Plan could cost as much as $200,000, but he hopes to secure grants to pay for it.
“We hope to seek funding to develop that plan,” he said. “A Plan can cost anywhere from $150,000 to $200,000 and we will seek Seaport Economic Council dollars, likely this spring, for that effort.”
The decision was a blow to what many residents on the eastern side of the city and City Planners had hoped would be a thriving new recreational and economic development district located on what has been no man’s land for generations. Ambrosino said they will wait to see what the final decision says, but that a request for another review cannot be made for five years.
A map showing the areas reviewed by the CZM. The City had hoped the Marginal Street and Eastern Avenue South areas would be taken out of the DPA, but they were not. Instead, parcels in the Mill Hill area were removed.
When the federal Department of Homeland Security (DHS), Immigrations and Customs Enforcement (ICE) and the Obama Administration suddenly announced on Dec. 23 that they would start conducting raids to take into custody Central Americans who were here illegally and missed critical court dates, it didn’t take long for panic to set in around Chelsea.
With a huge population of Central American migrants who have arrived over the last two years seeking economic opportunity in the U.S. and fleeing violence in Guatemala, El Salvador and Honduras, the news travelled fast and that large population went into panic mode.
Social media would light up with erroneous reports of ICE being in Chelsea or Eastie every time a black sedan drove down a street.
Spanish language radio broadcast false alerts when people would call up for supposed ICE raids on certain streets – which turned out to only be routine police patrols.
It was all unfounded, and unfortunate, but illustrated the panic that can be aroused at any moment in the large communities of people who have arrived in the area over the last few years – once known as “unaccompanied minors.”
“There was a panic every time people saw a black car and the radio stations were conveying the information,” said Gladys Vega of the Chelsea Collaborative. “You wouldn’t believe the panic. One man came to our office and wouldn’t go to work because he thought ICE would come get him. He risked losing his job, and there was nothing happening yet. People should be wise, but educated.”
The panic, however, is not without reason.
DHS and ICE did start conducting raids on Jan. 2 after announcing the effort rather quietly on Dec. 23 before Christmas. They announced that 121 persons had been taken into custody in North Carolina, Georgia and Texas, though advocates believe smaller numbers have been taken across the U.S. and they believe the raids could soon happen in areas of Massachusetts like Chelsea and Eastie. The federal government is not broadcasting its game plan, so no one really knows for sure.
To that end, the Collaborative is holding a community meeting for those affected on Jan. 13 at 5:30 p.m. at the Collaborative. It will be a safe, informational meeting for individuals and families. Then, on Jan. 14, there will be another meeting for stakeholders in the community – such as the Chelsea Schools.
The featured speaker will be Oscar Chacon of Alianza Americas, a national expert on the issue.
“Chelsea has not been affected yet, but we need to prepare for the worst-case scenario,” said Vega. “There is not need to put people in a panic, but we want them to be prepared and have the tools ready and the information ready if something does happen.”
That, she said, includes putting together a team to go door-to-door after the meetings.
“We’re going to be getting together the non-profits and creating a Chelsea raid response team going door-to-door to raid education and preparedness,” she said. “We want to make sure anyone who opens the door is very careful and that they have code words and emergency contacts ready for their kids. If a parent gets taken away for deportation and the kids come home and no one is there, they need to be ready to have emergency contacts and accommodations. Nothing is happening here now, but we are the largest immigrant community in Massachusetts.”
Chacon said it is a complicated issue, and he isn’t sure what brought on the newest set of raids right now.
The reason for the raids, however, is due to the fact that the Central Americans have missed court dates that were set for them when they crossed the border and were taken into custody. Once in custody at the border, which typically was in Texas, the individuals would submit information as to where they were going, and then they would be released and allowed to travel to that location. Later, a court date before an Immigration Court judge would be set up and notification mailed to the address given at the border.
Many folks, since early 2014 and up until right now (as there has been another surge recently from Central America), chose to come to Chelsea or East Boston where there is a huge Central American population and where many of their relatives or friends resided.
However, a vast majority of those folks in this area and nationwide, ended up missing those hearings. That, Chacon said, resulted in a deportation order being issued by the judge when the individual didn’t show up.
“That’s kind of where all of this beings,” he said. “Because there are so many people over the last two years who have come in, there is simply not enough lawyers – and never could be – to adequately and expediently represent everyone in all of these cases. Second, these people com broke. Upon coming here, they don’t have the means to retain the services of a lawyer. The result is when the hearing is scheduled, these people have not found an attorney to represent them. So, many decide not to show up. Other simply move from the place they first came to live. Someone may come to Chelsea first and then move to Everett, but forget to send the change of address. When the court hearing notification comes to the Chelsea address, they never get the information In both cases, they don’t go and that results in a deportation in absentia order.”
He said that right now, they believe there are about 15,000 such cases that fit the profile, with likely more to come.
“We first got the news of what is now happening in the Washington Post on Dec. 23 and tried to get more information about it, but weren’t successful,” he said. “When we did get more information, we tried to get President Obama to back down and ask the DHS to back up, but without success. On Saturday, Jan. 2, they conducted the raids in North Carolina, Texas and George. Now, we know the raids are going on in a few other places too…It is a special operation focused on Central Americans.”
Chacon said he will offer common sense tips, explain what rights people have, inform people as to what is going on right now, and go over the legal services that are available.
“If ICE comes knocking at the door at 5 a.m., many wonder if they have the right not to let them in,” he said. “Most people in that situation really don’t know. They see armed people with ‘ICE’ on their chest and they’re scared. In their countries, when people like that come to the door and you don’t open up, they break down the door and will likely kill you. People need to understand that’s not how things go down in the United States of America.”
Another situation that is also unfolding is the fact that the intended target might have moved, but the person who now lives there might also be wanted by ICE.
Chacon said it is all very curious, and politically speaking, an odd move in what is an election year.
“This type of move doesn’t sit well with Latino voters,” he said. “From an election perspective, I’ve been scratching my head and wondering what is the goal of the Obama Administration. It’s either they think the Latino vote doesn’t matter or they are so confident they will get the Latino vote no matter what. People, especially women and children running away for they lives, deserve support and protection, not deportation.”