Tuesday, January 24, 2017
A resident using a fire extinguisher mostly put out a kitchen stove fire tonight at 4 Baker Ave. before firefighters arrived, Firefighters completed the job on arrival when they found heavy smoke in the structure, said Fire Chief Andrew Kingsbury. There were no injuries. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) WestportNow.com photo
By Ana Radelatwww.ctmirror.org
Washington — Introduced by the two senators who crushed her political hopes in Connecticut, Linda McMahon today sailed through a confirmation hearing, placing her a step closer to becoming the next head of the Small Business Administration.
Sens. Richard Blumenthal and Chris Murphy, who both ran against McMahon to win their seats in the Senate, praised McMahon, the founder with her husband Vincent of the World Wrestling Federation, now the WWE, as a savvy businesswoman who would bring good policy and judgment to the Trump administration.
At her hearing before the Senate Small Business and Entrepreneurship Committee, Murphy introduced McMahon as “a fellow Nutmegger.”
“This visual is going to be a little amusing and surprising to folks in Connecticut, who saw the three of us duke it out during two long Senate campaigns, but politics can’t work if political grudges never die,” Murphy said.
It was a wet ride home tonight as the last of the nor’easter whipped through the Westport area. View is looking west on Post Road East at Imperial Avenue. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Dave Matlow for WestportNow.com
A gas range top—recalled in 2011 because of the danger of causing an explosion—was pinpointed today by Westport firefighters as the likely cause of a fire and small explosion in a kitchen of a home on Rocky Ridge Road off of Valley Road. There were no injuries, but there was damage to the stove and cabinetry, said Fire Chief Andrew Kingsbury. The resident had attempted to turn on the propane-supplied range top and immediately a small gas explosion occurred beneath the unit. This explosion was likely the result of a failure or leak in the unit, KIngsbury said. Quick action by the resident to shut off the burner control prevented further damage. The chief reminded residents to check the Consumer Products Safety Commission website for updates on recalls. He said six other reports involving explosions have been reported to the range top manufacturer, General Electric. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Contributed photo
Norristown, Pennsylvania-based BartonPartners Architects Planners Inc. today was selected to develop a transit-oriented master plan for the Saugatuck area. Planning and Zoning Commission Chair Catherine Walsh, a member of the subcommittee of the larger Saugatuck Study Committee, which chose the firm from 13 applicants, a short time later showed off a copy of its proposal during a luncheon talk to the Westport Rotary Club. “They really did their homework and am confident they will do a good job,” she said. Partnered with Barton will be Langan Engineering, 4ward Planning, and Becker + Becker, whose principal, Bruce R. Becker, an architect and developer, lives in Westport and will serve as their “ambassador” to the project. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Dave Matlow for WestportNow.com
James Burton Schryver of Fall River Mills, California, a former Westport resident, died Jan. 11. He was 93.
He was born in Orange, New Jersey, to Edson and Elizabeth Schryver. After graduating from Staples High School in Westport, he enrolled in the engineering program at Cornell University in 1941.
Before completing his degree, he enlisted in the Army in 1943 and ultimately became part of the U.S. involvement in World War II. He fought in the Battle of the Bulge and remained in Europe after the war as a first lieutenant., responsible for relocating German prisoners of war.
In 1946, he returned home and resumed his education at Cornell, earning a Bachelor’s Degree in mechanical engineering. In 1949 he moved to Reno, Nevada, and worked for Dean Witter as a stockbroker.
Westport’s Justin Paul (c), composer Justin Hurwitz (l) and fellow lyricist Benj Pasek won two Oscar nominations today for best original song award for “City of Stars” and “Audition (The Fools Who Dream)” in the film “La La Land.” “La La Land” had a total of 14 nominations, including best original score—a tie with “Titanic” and “All About Eve” for the most in Academy Award history. Paul, a 2003 Staples High School graduate, also won a Golden Globe (above) last month for best original song for “City of Stars.” The Oscars will be broadcast on Sunday, Feb. 26. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) WestportNow.com photo from NBC-TV
One year ago today, Westport and the New York metropolitan area were digging out from a massive snowstom. Westport unofficially received 13 inches while New York’s Central Park got 26.8 inches, making it the second largest snowstorm since 1869 in New York City..The record setter was 26.9 inches in February 2006. View is in Westport’s Sconset Square. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Dave Matlow for WestportNow.com
UPDATE High winds downed trees and caused some power outages in Westport Monday and today as a nor’easter moved through the area.
Eversource Energy reported 106 Westport customers were without power at 1 a.m. today (Tuesday) but the number was down to one at 8 a.m.
Trees were reported down in the area of 315 Bayberry Lane, Hillspoint Road at Burnham Hill, and on Greenbriar Lane on Monday.
The National Weather Service said the storm could produce winds of up to 60 mph and drop up to 2 inches of rain before ending. However, the rainfall total was little more than half an inch at Bridgeport on Monday with highest wind gusts officially recorded at 40 mph there.
Noon - Town Hall Room 201/201A - Saugatuck TOD Steering Subcommittee
1 p.m. - Westport Library - WestportWRITES: Advanced Writing Class
2 p.m. - Westport Library - WestportREADS 2017 Movie: “The Boy Friend”
4 p.m. - 6 p.m. - Westport Library - Drop-in Tech Help
7 p.m. - Westport Library - Introduction to Naturopathic Medicine
7 p.m. - Town Hall Room 201/201A - Conservation Commission (live coverage cable channel 79, AT&T channel 99, and westportct.gov)
7:30 p.m. - Town Hall Room 309 - Architectural Review Board
See more events: Celebrate Westport Calendar
Monday, January 23, 2017
Tonight’s high tide water level elevated the docks on their pilings at the Ned Dimes Marina at Compo Beach, turning the downward ramps into nearly horizontal walkways. Jaime Bairaktaris for WestportNow.com
The Metropolitan Transportation Authority (MTA) today announced that the New Haven Line, Metro-North’s busiest, had another exceptional year in 2016, with 40.5 million annual rides, surpassing last’s year’s record by approximately 20,000.
The New Haven Line remains the busiest commuter rail line in America.
Gov. Dannel P. Malloy, commenting on the figures said: “Our future economic growth depends on the vibrancy and vitality of an efficient transportation system that attracts workers and businesses and moves goods and services as efficiently as possible.
“For too long, our state did not make the needed investments to keep up with our transportation needs, and now we are making the long overdue steps to make our bold vision of a modernized transportation system into a reality.
The surf was up at Westport’s Compo Beach today as a nor’easter moved up the coast. Forecasters said gusts up to 60 mph could occur and a coastal flood advisory and flood watch remained in effect until late tonight. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Bob Eckman for WestportNow.com
Officers arrested a Norwalk man for drunk driving after he went through a red light at the Jesup Road intersection, police said today.
According to Lt. David Farrell, the officer could smell a strong odor of alcohol when she stopped the vehicle at about 7 p.m. on Friday. The driver, James Ribaudo, 47, has slurred speech and his eyes appeared to be glossed over, Farrell said.
Following a standard field sobriety test, which he failed, Ribaudo was taken into custody and given a brethalyzer test which showed his alcohol content was over the legal limit.
Charged with operating a motor vehicle while under the influence and failure to obey a control signal, Ribaudo was released after posting a $500 bond. He is scheduled to appear in Norwalk Superior Court on Tuesday, Jan. 31.
9 a.m. - Westport Weston Family Y - Blood Pressure Self-Monitoring Program
Noon - Westport Library - WestportSPEAKS
6 p.m. - Westport Library - Tabletop Games for Adults
7 p.m. - Town Hall Room 201 - Website Redevelopment Steering Committee Canceled
7:30 p.m. - Staples Cafeteria B - Board of Education (live coverage cable channel 78, AT&T channel 99, and www.westport.k12.ct.us) Canceled
7:30 p.m. - Town Hall Room 309 - Parks & Recreation Advisory Committee
See more events: Celebrate Westport Calendar
Sunday, January 22, 2017
The Ned Dimes Marina at Westport’s Compo Beach today was quiet before Monday’s forecasted rain and high winds. The National Weather Service issued a high wind warning, coastal flood watch and advisory for the Westport area. It said up to 4 inches of rain and gusts to 70 mph are possible, especially along the coast. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Bob Eckman for WestportNow.com
Joker, a 3-month-old puppy from the Westport branch of the Connecticut Humane Society, today gives kisses to one of the guests at the Westport Country Playhouse Story Explorers presentation of the new musical “Biscuit.” Part of the Playhouse’s Family Festivities Series, the ArtsPower play about a puppy is based on the book by Alyssa Satin Capucilli with over 17 million copies in print. The Playhouse is partnering with the Westport Library and Westport Young Woman’s League to promote childhood literacy while also enhancing children’s experiences of attending the Playhouse’s Family Festivities shows. On Jan. 14, there was a reading of “Biscuit” at the library. (See WestportNow Jan.14, 2017) (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Phyllis Groner for WestportNow.com
By James Lomuscio
UPDATE (adds memorial service) Bill Buckley, the longtime Westport, award-winning documentarian who created campaign films for Presidents John F. Kennedy and Lyndon Johnson plus a television series with Harry Truman, worked up until his death Friday at 88.
“The day he died he got a request for a film,” his wife Judith Hamer said tonight at Meadow Ridge Senior Living Community in Redding, where they have lived since 2007.
Buckley said Meadow Ridge was close enough to Westport, a town where he wanted to be but said had little senior housing.
His film company B&B Productions, which closed upon his death, was his bread and butter. It produced legal, medical films for litigating plaintiffs to show damages they incurred.
Scenes from the life of award-winning documentary filmmaker Bill Buckley, a longtime Westport resident. He died Jan. 20 at age 88. He most recently lived at Meadow Ridge in Redding with wife Judy Hamer, also a longtime Westporter. Many of his documentaries involved the civil and human rights movements. He worked closely with the late Westport author and illustrator Tracy Sugarman (his death coming four years to the day after Sugarman’s.) He helped to create campaign films for John F. Kennedy and Lyndon Johnson, and worked with Harry Truman on the award-winning television series, “Years of Decision.” Dave Matlow, Larry Untermeyer and Phyllis Groner for WestportNow.com and contributed photos
John T. Valiante of Westport died Jan. 17 in Greenbrae, California. He was 28.
Born on April 16, 1988 in Norwalk, he was a son of Bart and Anne Valiante and a lifelong Westport resident.
He was a singer, songwriter, and a passionate musician. He was a fisherman, a carpenter as well as a licensed mechanic; — a Jack of all trades.
He had a heart of gold and would give you the shirt off his back. He made a special connection to everyone he touched, especially seen in his bond with animals
Daniel B. Driscoll, of West Yarmouth, Massachusetts, a Westport native, highly decorated World War II fighter pilot, and Westport selectman, died Jan. 11. He was 96.
Born in 1920 and raised in Westport, he attended Staples High School and Pratt Institute of Technology. He then enlisted in the U.S. Navy as a pilot.
He distinguished himself in several famous aerial battles in the Pacific.
Flying a Grumman F6F Hellcat, a carrier-based fighter aircraft, he was part of a group that downed 148 Japanese planes in the air and sank 48,000 tons of enemy shipping, according to historians.
3 p.m. - Westport Library - Talking to Children about Race
1 p.m. and 4 p.m. - Westport Country Playhouse - “Biscuit”
1 p.m. - Westport Library - Open Write-in of the Fairfield County Writers Group
See more events: Celebrate Westport Calendar
Saturday, January 21, 2017
The Fairfield County Chapter of the Organization of Chinese Americans held two Chinese New Year celebrations of the Year of the Rooster, 4715 (which actuall y begins Jan. 28) at the Westport Woman’s Club today. According to Westport resident Steven Chin, president of the Fairfield County Chapter, the event “is an outreach to the community and demonstrates community spirit.” About 250 persons attended the second session. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Dave Matlow for WestportNow.com
Westport residents Steven Chin (l), president of the Fairfield County Chapter of the Organization of Chinese Americans, chats with with well known pianist Frederic Chiu tonight at the Westport Woman’s Club celebrating the Chinese New Year, the year of the rooster. Chiu performed Gao Ping’s “Nostalgia” and “Katyusha.” (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Dave Matlow for WestportNow.com