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Wednesday, December 30, 2009

Sad Gathering Image
Scott Rochlin and his family await the start of services today at Westport’s St. Luke Church. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Dave Matlow for


12/30/09 04:57 PM Comments () • Permalink

Escorting a Friend on His Final Journey Image
Westport Police Chief Al Fiore, a longtime friend of the Rochlin family, was among the pallbearers for Charles M. Rochlin today at St. Luke Church and Willowbrook Cemetery.  (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Dave Matlow for


12/30/09 04:55 PM Comments () • Permalink

Paying Final Respects Image
Mourners filed in early to Westport’s St. Luke Church today for the funeral service for U.S. Marine Charles M. Rochlin of Westport. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Dave Matlow for


12/30/09 04:45 PM Comments () • Permalink

Low Tide Colors Image
Low tide on Tuesday at Westport’s Compo Beach produced a variety of colors. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Phyllis Groner for


12/30/09 05:15 AM Comments () • Permalink

Wednesday, Dec. 30, 2009

10 a.m. - 4 p.m. - Westport Historical Society - “Treasures from the Westport Schools Permanent Art Collection”
10 a.m. - 4 p.m. - Westport Arts Center—“The Judge: Jazz Photographs by Musician Milt Hinton”
2:30 p.m. - 3:15 p.m. - Westport Public Library - Spaghetti Eddie Family Program with Ryan SanAngelo

See more events:  Celebrate Westport Calendar


12/30/09 05:05 AM Comments () • Permalink

Holiday Lights Shine Brightly Image
Holiday lights continue to delight visitors to Westport’s Saugatuck area. The lights on the William F. Cribari Bridge are courtesy of Al’s Angels charity group. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Jose Villaluz for


12/30/09 03:15 AM Comments () • Permalink

Mourning a Marine Image
A makeshift memorial has appeared on Greens Farms Road at the scene of Sunday’s accident that took the life of Charles M. Rochlin, a 24-year-old Westporter who was a lance corporal in the U.S. Marines. Hundreds of persons attended a wake for him today at the Harding Funeral Home in Westport where fellow Marines in full dress uniforms ushered in crowds for hours in the sub-freezing weather. Similar large numbers are expected at Wednesday’s mass at St. Luke Church. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Dave Matlow for


12/30/09 12:57 AM Comments () • Permalink

Playing in the Cold Image
Despite temperatures in the teens, some visitors to Westport’s Compo Beach today enjoyed the sunny weather.  (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Phyllis Groner for


12/30/09 12:08 AM Comments () • Permalink

Caricaturist David Levine Dies at 83; Had Westport Ties

Caricaturist David Levine, best known for his work published in The New York Review of Books and whose output has been coordinated by his son from his Compo Beach-area home in Westport, died today. He was Image
David Levine in a photo from a Web site coordinated by his son, Matthew, a Westport resident and artist who, like his father, has painted many Westport scenes. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) photo

Levine died at New York Presbyterian Hospital in Manhattan of prostate cancer and complications from other ailments, according to Robert Silvers, editor of The New York Review. He called Levine “the greatest caricaturist of his time.”

Levine, who also painted numerous watercolors of Westport scenes, was known for his drawings of politicians, celebrities, writers and historical figures that typically had large heads and exaggerated features. In one well-known image from 1966, President Lyndon B. Johnson pulls up his shirt to reveal a gallbladder-operation scar shaped like the map of Vietnam.

The drawings defined the look of The New York Review, which sold them on calendars and T-shirts.

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12/30/09 12:04 AM Comments () • Permalink

Tuesday, December 29, 2009

Supporting the Burn Center Image
Westport Assistant Fire Chief Andy Kingsbury (2nd r) accepts a $1,500 check today from Bob LeRose, owner of Westport’s Bobby Q’s Restaurant, and entertainer Frank Bergonz of Westport. LaRose said that this is the fifth consecutive year that Bobby Q’s has raised funds for the Connecticut Burn Center to whom the Westport Fire Department forwards the funds and that the total contributed is now more than $10,000. The funds were raised last summer when the Lost in the Flood musical group with Bergonz as lead vocalist performed an all-Bruce Springsteen program at the restaurant.  Bergonz, who has participated in the fundraising event every year since 2002—when the restaurant site was known as Onion Alley—said it honors the memory of 9/11 firefighters. Pictured (l-r) are Firefighters Chris Carroll and James Workman, LaRose, Bergonz, Kingsbury, and Firefighter Brendan McHugh. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Dave Matlow for


12/29/09 09:16 PM Comments () • Permalink

Westport Police Debut Online Crime Mapping Service

The Westport Police Department today launched its new online crime mapping and reporting Image
The Westport Police Department’s online crime reporting tool went live today at (CLICK TO ENLARGE) photo

Approved by the Board of Selectmen earlier this month (See WestportNow Dec. 16, 2009), the online crime reporting tool has won praise from other departments around the country which have implemented it.

“One of the goals of the Westport Police Department is to better inform the public about crimes and other safety related issues that affect our community,” the department said in a news release.

“In order to better serve our community the Westport Police Department is now part of”

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12/29/09 08:23 PM Comments () • Permalink

High Winds Bring Down Trees, Power Lines Image
Today’s high winds brought down trees and power lines throughout Westport. One of the most serious calls was a tree on a house at 11 Pumpkin Hill Road. Assistant Fire Chief Larry Conklin said none of the occupants was injured and damage to the interior of the house appeared minimal. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Contributed photo


12/29/09 07:52 PM Comments () • Permalink

Russell C. Bass, Sr., 87

Russell Cooper Bass, Sr., of Danbury, died Monday, Dec. 28, at his home. He was 87.

He was the husband of the late Edwina Christine (Brundage) Bass. He was born in Windham, Dec. 9, 1922, son of the late George R. and Bessie M. (Cooper) Bass.

Previously of South Norwalk and Wilton, he attended Wilton Center School, Westport Junior High, and Staples High School.

He served in the Army during World War II and worked as a machine operator for 45 years at Gilbert & Bennett, until his retirement in 1987.

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12/29/09 05:02 PM Comments () • Permalink

Driver Escapes Serious Injury in Wilton Road Crash Image
A male driver escaped serious injury today when his SUV crashed into a utility pole on Westport’s Wilton Road near the Red Barn Restaurant and Exit 41 of the Merritt Parkway. Cause of the accident was under investigation. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Dave Matlow for


12/29/09 04:28 PM Comments () • Permalink

Going Down: 6 Elwil Drive Image
The house at 6 Elwil Drive, off Westport’s Roseville Road, was demolished today. Built in 1950, the 1-3/4-story colonial had 2,240 square feet, was situated on a one-acre property on a cul-de-sac, and changed ownership last month for $925,000.  It was the WestportNow Teardown of the Day on Sept. 25, 2009. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Dave Matlow for


12/29/09 04:11 PM Comments () • Permalink

Muriel Doyle, 80

Muriel Doyle Muriel (Ronnie) Jennesse Wronwick Doyle of Hilton Head Island, S.C, formerly of Westport, died on Dec.  25. She was 80.

She was born in Brooklyn, N.Y., on Sept. 24, 1929, the only child of Helen (Schriefer) and Charles Wronwick. She attended The Berkeley Carroll School. She was a graduate of Jackson College for Women (Tufts University) where she met and married her husband, Lawrence, in 1951.

Upon graduation she worked for Westvaco in New York City and supported her husband while he pursued his JD from Columbia University. Prior to putting down roots in Westport, Ronnie and Larry lived in Augsburg, West Germany.

Upon their return to the United States they raised three children, Jeffrey C. Doyle of Cincinnati, Ohio, Allison A. Doyle of Natick, Mass., and Nancy D. Bowditch of Medway, Mass.

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12/29/09 03:28 PM Comments () • Permalink

Metro-North Reports Weather-Related Delays

UPDATE Metro-North Railroad said at 2:30 p.m. today that service on the New Haven Line had returned to normal after hours of delays due to wire damage at Port Chester, N.Y.

The first delays were reported shortly after 7 a.m., some of them lasting 30 minutes. Later, the railroad said delays were running about 15 minutes.

Late night Monday passengers on a New Haven-bound train sat for more than 90 minutes with no heat or power after it broke down near Westport shortly after midnight, according to passengers.

It was not known if the breakdown was also weather-related.


12/29/09 12:28 PM Comments () • Permalink

Wind Advisory Issued

The National Weather Service in Upton, N.Y. has issued a wind advisory for Westport and area which is in effect until 7 p.m.

Northwest winds of 25 to 35 mph with gusts up to 50 mph can be expected today in the wake of an Arctic cold front, the advisory said.

The strongest winds will be from late morning into the afternoon.

The gusty winds will gradually diminish after dark.


12/29/09 09:59 AM Comments () • Permalink

Storm Brewing Image
The skies over Westport’s Longshore Club Park on Monday looked like a storm was brewing. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Phyllis Groner for


12/29/09 05:15 AM Comments () • Permalink

Tuesday, December 29, 2009

10 a.m. - 4 p.m. - Westport Historical Society - “Treasures from the Westport Schools Permanent Art Collection”
10 a.m. - 4 p.m. - Westport Arts Center—“The Judge: Jazz Photographs by Musician Milt Hinton”
10:30 a.m. and 2 p.m. - Westport Public Library - Family Fun Film: “Up!”

See more events:  Celebrate Westport Calendar


12/29/09 05:05 AM Comments Closed • Permalink

Monday, December 28, 2009

Westport Man Unhurt in Fairfield Crash

An 83-year-old Westport man drove his SUV into a doctors’ office building in Fairfield today, police Image
The exterior of the doctor’s office at 111 Beach Road in Fairfield was damaged. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Fairfield Fire Department photo

Walter Bagdon was uninjured in the 10:40 a.m. accident at 111 Beach Road, but there was damage to the brick façade of the building, police said.

Bagdon’s Mercedes SUV hit the building with sufficient force to push the wall in approximately a foot, causing damage to the exterior and several office areas within serving Primary Healthcare Physicians of Fairfield, according to Fairfield firefighters.

In addition to the exterior wall damage, interior walls to three administrative offices were significantly damaged along with their ceilings and furnishings, but upper floors were not found to have been seriously affected by the impact, firefighters said.

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12/28/09 11:06 PM Comments () • Permalink

Comings and Goings: Ice Cream Shop Opens, Sort Of

By Dave Matlow

Sunny Daes ice cream shop has opened its doors for business at Westport’s 30 Riverside Ave. Sort of. Image
Westport is the fifth Sunny Daes shop for owner Sergio Keskin. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Dave Matlow for

According to owner Sergio Keskin, 42, the shop is now open from noon to 9 p.m. “except when there’s a blizzard or something like that.”

He calls this a “soft opening” until the grand opening which is scheduled for Feb. 15. “Meanwhile we’re playing it by the weather,” he said.

Keskin, a resident of Trumbull, said that this is his fifth Sunny Daes shop. His first was in Stamford in 1999. Two others followed in Fairfield in 2001 and 2002, and the most recent in Trumbull in 2006.

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12/28/09 09:28 PM Comments () • Permalink

Westport Property Transfers Dec. 7 - 11, 2009

Westport property transfers as reported by the Town Clerk’s office for the period Dec. 7 - 11, 2009:

Edward C. Luciano to Able Construction Inc., 66 Old Road, $375,000WN property.jpg

Virginia G. Ehrhorn to Herbert and Adriana Van Wyngaarden, 105 Harbor Road, $1,850,000

Kirby Jonas to Thomas and Theresa Prangley, 16 Bonnie Brook Road, $1,035,000

Suzanne Steinberg to Ann B. Moore, 203 Lansdowne, $730,000

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12/28/09 09:26 PM Comments () • Permalink

WestportNow Teardown of the Day: 5 Grant Ave. Image
An application is in process for a permit to demolish the house at 5 Grant Ave. off Washington Avenue in Westport. Built in 1961, the one-story split has 1,536 square feet and is situated on a .45-acre property. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Dave Matlow for


12/28/09 08:43 PM Comments () • Permalink

Police Seek Information on Sunday Crash Image
UPDATE Westport police today asked the public’s help in its investigation of Sunday’s 2:45 a.m. crash on Greens Farms Road that killed Charles M. Rochlin, 24 (inset). “The Police Department is requesting that anyone who may have witnessed the accident or has information about this accident call the Police Department at (203)-341-6000,” a news release said. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Contributed photos


12/28/09 05:17 PM Comments () • Permalink

Charles M. Rochlin, 24

Charles (Charley) Mark Rochlin, 24, of Westport, passed away Dec. Image
Charles M. Rochlin: A Marine since 2008. Contributed photo

Charley was born Sept. 14, 1985 in Norwalk and has been a lifelong resident of Westport. He attended Fairfield Prep for three years where he played competitive ice hockey and graduated from Staples High School June 2003.

He also attended the University of Colorado for three years. Following his time at the University of Colorado, Charley enlisted in the United States Marine Corps in March of 2008.

He completed a seven-month tour in Iraq, returning home this past September and was currently stationed at camp Lejeune in North Carolina.

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12/28/09 04:09 PM Comments () • Permalink

Man Killed in Sunday Accident Was Marine Home on Leave

UPDATE Police today identified the fatality in Sunday’s early morning accident on Greens Farms Road as Charles (Charley) M. Rochlin, 24, a 2003 Staples High School graduate who had returned in September from a tour in Iraq with the U.S. Image
Charles Rochlin was a U.S. Marine home on leave. photo

A second person in the car was treated and released at Norwalk Hospital. Police identified him as Matthew Packer, 25, of Westport and said he was the “suspected operator.” Friends said Rochlin and Packer had been lifelong friends.

Rochlin, a lance corporal, was home on leave from Camp Lejeune in North Carolina. He was scheduled to deploy to Afghanistan with his unit early in 2010. (See obituary here.)

Police said alcohol may have been involved in the accident in which the 2004 Jeep Grand Cherokee careened into a tree on the passenger side in front of 109 Greens Farms Road and swerved across the road, coming to rest on the opposite side.

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12/28/09 03:39 PM Comments () • Permalink

Sunset Watching Image
A group of visitors to Westport’s Compo Beach on Sunday engaged in a popular spectator sport—sunset watching. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Phyllis Groner for


12/28/09 05:15 AM Comments () • Permalink

Monday, December 28, 2009

Westport Arts Center closed for the holidays
10 a.m. - 3 p.m. - Westport Public Library - Drop-In Crafts (Kids)
10 a.m. - 4 p.m. - Westport Historical Society - “Treasures from the Westport Schools Permanent Art Collection”

See more events:  Celebrate Westport Calendar


12/28/09 05:05 AM Comments Closed • Permalink

Westport Sketchbook: Compo Blue Ribbon Image
Westport artist and illustrator Elaine Clayton watched the “mutt mitts” at Compo Beach create a blue ribbon flying in the wind. See more of her work at (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Elaine Clayton for


12/28/09 04:46 AM Comments () • Permalink

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