Crash Course

On the afternoon of December 16, 1951, a passenger plane bound for Tampa caught fire shortly after takeoff from Newark Metropolitan Airport. The number 10 cylinder of the right engine had failed. Smoke trailed the plane as it dove toward the city of Elizabeth and crashed into the Elizabeth River, killing all 56 on board.…

On the Frontline

Within 24 hours of the November 13 terrorist attacks in Paris, New Jersey’s Office of Homeland Security and Preparedness convened a conference call with 160 leaders of various faiths in the state to discuss potential terror threats and share information that might prove valuable in averting an attack here. Developing lines of communication with religious…

The Ultimate Gift: A Story About Organ Donation

It was just another humid day in August, but Dr. Randall “Randy” Marc Giles was on top of the world. The 43-year-old father of three was about to open a private surgical practice in Wayne. He had stopped at a friend’s house after unloading boxes at his new office when he started to feel funny;…

Pension Fight Inspires Film

Laurel Hester selflessly protected the people of New Jersey for 24 years as a detective lieutenant with the Ocean County Prosecutor’s Office. In 2004, while still on the force, she was diagnosed with terminal lung cancer. Her dying wish to pass on her pension benefits to her registered domestic partner, Stacie Andree, was repeatedly denied…

Why Jersey Roads Suck

New Jersey potholes are no joke. Just ask Catherine Felegi. A confident driver, Felegi, 26, travels 30 miles on state roads each workday from her home in Cranford to her job in Plainsboro and back. Last winter, Felegi and her parents had to replace five tires on their two Volvos, victims of potholes on those…

Voyage To Her Roots

At 75, Paterson-born poet Maria Mazziotti Gillan won’t rest on her laurels, substantial though they are. Along a road that she admits has at times been rough, Gillan has amassed a parade of accomplishments. She grew up in a cold-water flat on 17th Street, the shy daughter of Italian immigrants. “Believe me, at 19, people…