Saltaire Summery

Saltaire’s junior lifeguards undergo spring training on Memorial Day Weekend in preparation for the summer ahead. (Photo by Justine Markus-Sullivan)

By Hugh O’Brien

Kind of a subdued Memorial Day Weekend (MDW), wasn’t it? Even with good weather, the Yacht Club welcome-back cocktail party, softball, full beaches, municipal elections and the first SVFC Pancake Breakfast on an MDW in three years. Still and all, the crowded ferries made it plain the residents were in residence, so all was right with the world, or our small portion thereof.

Okay, the election. As things turned out 175 voters turned out, and the leader of the candidate pack was Susan Skerritt, who topped the poll for one of two trustee spots up for election this year on the venerable Board, with longtime incumbent Frank Wolf taking second. In the race for mayor, yours truly was first past the post, despite being officially unopposed. Speaking personally, I’m honored by the confidence you’ve invested in me and regardless of how or whether you voted, I’ll do my best for you. I also want to warmly welcome Susan to, and Frank back to, the Board; Frank has been a fine trustee and Susan will soon match that description, and two better choices would be hard to come by. That said, an equally good choice was Trustee Alex Chefetz; Alex may not have won his bid for reelection, but that doesn’t take away from his years of hard work, diminish his successes or lessen his dedication to us all. Most residents shy from running for office, let alone committing to the time and effort involved in actually holding it, so we’re fortunate to have people of the caliber of Susan, Frank, Alex and those others willing to take up the task. Such folks deserve our thanks.

Please note that from now on this space will be devoted solely to non-governmental events so that not even the minutest appearance of conflict will soil these pages or your underwear. Of course, ever-mindful of the public’s safety, we may bend that rule for stuff like plagues and hurricanes.

A pause now to remember those Saltairians who’ve passed away since last August … Fred Bach, Anne Keegan, Lea Slote, Dorothy Carr, Ardian Gill, Deborah Morse, Edie Watts and Alex Holtz. Each is deeply missed, and several merit special Saltaire note. Both Ardian and Edie served as village trustees, distinguishing themselves and doing right by the community. Dorothy, wife of the late Mayor Joel Carr, reigned as First Lady across Joel’s 1986-1994 tenure. Most notable of all is Anne Coffey Keegan, whose father Mike built those treasured “Coffey houses.” Born in 1924, Anne lived in Saltaire her entire life, her first 20-plus years year-round, in the days before internet, TV or (out here) radio, telephones or electricity, not even a bridge to drive over. Today, people complain if the bagels come late. Anne’s final visit was the weekend before she died last September, age 97, the longest-resident resident in village history, and our last living link to eras and events long vanished. God bless.