Community Columns

Cutchogue-New Suffolk News: Fundraiser set for Mattituck grad

A fundraiser for a Mattituck graduate is underway. (Credit: Gofundme)
A fundraiser for a Mattituck graduate is underway. (Credit: Gofundme)

After a delicious Rosh Hashanah meal, the family sat down in front of the TV just in time to see history in the making: Derek Jeter hitting the winning walk-off single that won the game! What an exciting way to start off the New Year! If this is any indication of what’s to come it is sure to be good! 

Living next to a Little League baseball field meant that Jackie Goy and Darrin Anderson would find the occasional foul ball in their yard. Darrin gathered four baseballs, wrote “Will you marry me?” on them and placed them around the yard. While he was out there with Jackie, much as he’d normally do, he picked them up and tossed them to her, asking the question that would change her life. Jackie had known this day was coming; she just didn’t know how or when! Jackie visited with her parents, Laura and Charlie, sister Sydney and grandmothers Barbara, from New Suffolk, and Christel, from Westhampton, a few times this summer. She also made the trip to move Sydney to the University of Delaware. She and Darrin will be married Nov. 28, 2015, in Albany. Congratulations and God bless!

This past June, Sarrah Strickland, MHS Class of 2009, was in a taxi in Pennsylvania when it was hit by an ambulance in the middle of an intersection. She sustained critical injuries that left her immobile for months, required life support and erased her short-term memory. As soon as she could be moved she returned to Mattituck and the care of her family. Now, she’s able to walk for short periods and her memory has returned. She’s back in Pennsylvania and will resume work as a bartender in three weeks, but Sarrah still has a long journey ahead, with months of PT and rehabilitation.

Sarrah’s former classmates Elizabeth Vlismas and Sam Sheryll saw her Facebook post about the accident, in which she noted that she lost her favorite Toms shoes. They knew they could help, so they reached out to Toms, which sent a gift basket including a replacement pair and much more. Elizabeth and Sam also set a goal to raise $3,000 to help Sarrah with the security deposit and first and last month’s rent on a new apartment. (She lost the one she had been renting.) Now, having raised $500 from other Mattituck classmates and alumni, they’re extending their outreach to the community at large. Any donations you can make toward helping Sarrah would be a blessing. To contribute, visit

Good things come to those who work hard and are patient. Anyone present at the opening ceremony for the new Mattituck High School track would agree. After a presentation of the colors by the NJROTC, members of the select chorus sang the national anthem and Superintendent Anne Smith welcomed the group and, along with Shawn Petretti, gave an overview of our district and its vision. Gerard Diffley cut the ribbon that freed the kindergartners (Class of 2027) and senior class — as well as community members, alumni,  administrators and faculty — to run the first lap! Go Tuckers!

It’s heartwarming to hear Mary Lentini describe her son Nick as a person who sets the bar high and works hard to achieve his expectations! She and her husband, Tom, are so proud of Nick, a student at the University of Albany, where he was accepted into the School of Business as a freshman and most recently earned a place in the Ernst & Young LEADS scholar program. It provides opportunities for financial assistance, networking and learning —  all things that lead to employment after graduation. Congratulations and God bless!

Calling all teens! The North Fork Alliance and Youth Advisory Council will hold a Teen Amazing Race this Saturday, Oct. 4, from 4 to 6 p.m. at Greenport High School. It’s a two-person team race and single entrants will be paired with a partner. Prizes include gift cards to Starbucks, Tanger, GameStop and more! A picnic follows the race. For more information, call 477-6821.

Don’t forget the CAST food drive this Saturday, Oct. 4, at local supermarkets. Pick up some non-perishables to donate while doing your regular shopping. Hours are: King Kullen, 10 a.m. to 2 p.m.; Waldbaum’s, 10:15 to 2:15; Southold IGA, 9:45 to 1:45; and Greenport IGA, 9:30 to 1:30.

The North Fork Reform Synagogue invites all who want to worship this Yom Kippur to join them! For the service schedule, visit

L’Shanah Tovah Tivetanu! May you all be blessed with good health, happiness and prosperity!

Contact Cutchogue-New Suffolk columnist Barbara Sheryll at [email protected] or 734-5242.