Firefighters and other emergency workers saved what lives they could when Flight 587 crashed into Belle Harbor.
Mayor Rudy Giuliani pelted the Port Authority for its poor performance in handling snow removal at LaGuardia and JFK International Airports…Queens mourned the death of Joseph Crowley, Sr., a civic activist, attorney and father of Queens Congressman Joseph Crowley Jr,…Officials rallied to keep John Bowne High School open after local civics called for its closure based on security and safety concerns…
Queens straphangers voiced their hope to derail the new “V” subway line…Queens Borough President Claire Shulman gave her last State of the Borough Address…Ten families were left out in the cold in Briarwood, as city officials tried to determine why five houses in the area were sinking…The Tribune shook the world of politics with a front page “Wanted Poster” featuring photos of the seven Queens City Council members who supported a plan to overturn term limits. Voters said “yes” to term limits twice. The front page blasted the pols “for disregarding the will of the people.” The threatened term limits repeal was killed in a City Council committee….
Plans for a mini-mall were released by a private developer who purchased the Flushing site where the Wendy’s massacre happened one year earlier…Cleanup crews worked to remove oil from the shoreline of Little Neck Bay as officials looked for a cause…
Tony Avena lost his battle to keep open his locksmith shop at the Main Street train station.
The Tribune hosted each mayoral and City Council candidate at its Fresh Meadows headquarters for a sit-down on issues and answers…Civics balked at plans for the construction of an elementary school on the Queens College campus… The Tribune backed Board of Ed member Terri Thomson in April, when Borough President Claire Shulman requested Thomson’s resignation from the board….
A Forest Hills High School graduate took home a Pulitzer Prize for his poems… Mayor Rudy Giuliani and Borough President Claire Shulman proposed a change for 56 acres of junkyard in Flushing (near Shea Stadium) into a Queens Convention Center….
June ended on a tragic note, when three Queens firefighters lost their lives at a Father’s Day blaze in Astoria…Mayoral candidate Mike Bloomberg met with Forest Hills residents, while 107 hopefuls filed to run for City Council seats…The Tribune featured New York City’s vision of the 2012 Olympic Games in Queens…The Tribune reported on 20 toxic sites in Queens that were not funded for clean-up…
We stood on the Queens shoreline Sept. 11 and stared at the images across the river. As the planes crashed into the mighty towers, we wept and prayed for the innocent victims, trapped in the fear and flames. And then the world, as we knew it, changed forever. The terrorist attack shut down Queens’ highways, airports, subways and buses. The Primary election was cancelled. Shea Stadium was turned into an outdoor warehouse of donated clothing and equipment for rescue crews….
The family of Tony Avena lost a court battle to stay in business in Flushing. The court gave the 80-year-old business until the end of 2001 to pack and move out…Helen Marshall was voted the new borough president…Mike Bloomberg began his first day as mayor-elect by greeting Queensites in Kew Gardens….
We were just beginning to cope with the terrorist attack when a plane fell from the skies over Belle Harbor. American Airlines Flight 587 exploded in mid-air, tore apart and slammed into homes. More than 267 people were killed in the crash, including seven people on the ground….
Nick Buglione : After spending two years as a reporter at the Queens Tribune, Nick is now editor of the Long Island Herald on Nassau County’s south shore.
The Queens Tribune taught me to be a journalist. In the year I spent as a staff writer, I learned more about what it means to be a reporter than in the four years I studied at Queens College.
The Tribune taught me what school couldn’t – like how the city works and how the officials who run it are full of it. It taught me how to write under deadline pressure with dozens of people buzzing around and a thunder-voiced publisher screaming for a cup of coffee as if he were Zeus atop Mount Olympus.
As a 21-year-old fresh out of school, it was exhilarating to write stories about the greatest borough and its fascinatingly diverse 2 million inhabitants. I got to meet some of the most eccentric people – cross-dressing jogger Elegant Elliot Offen comes to mind, but none were more interesting than the folks I worked with.
My fondest memories will always be about my co-workers. I still think about former managing editor Tamara Hartman, and the time she got so drunk with us on Bell Boulevard she threw up. I think about editor Steve McGuire, and how good it felt to rub it in his face when my Yankees beat his Mets in the 2000 Subway Series. I think about reporter Hector Flores, and how the two of us would stash away any photos submitted to the paper of cute girls, and then compare them like baseball cards on Fridays.
Then there was Nick Abadjian, another reporter whose driver license sported a picture of him looking like Frazier after 15 rounds with Ali. Apparently he had been jumped around the time he took the picture, but didn’t think to put it off until his face healed. And I’ll never forget Richard Schack and the nickel-and-dime wrestling promotion he helped run on the side, or Ira Cohen, the staff photographer who once proclaimed that the years he spent in the Vietnam War were some of the best of his life.
I love and miss all those guys. The Queens Tribune was one hell of a ride, and I’d give a million bucks to do it all over again.