Peekskill Herald

Peekskill Herald

Peekskill Herald

Newsworthy Notes from the week

Bill Geis, area businessman dies at age 93; New female police officer sworn in

Firefighter Bristol honored with plaque in Peekskill

Plaque at Peekskill Fire Department’s Memorial Garden at Riverfront Green.

Members of the Peekskill Fire Department, family and friends, gathered on March 30 to honor the memory of Firefighter Kevin J. Bristol whose life was taken in the line of duty on March 3, 2014.

A ceremony was held at the PFD Memorial Gardens at the Riverfront Green Park to dedicate a newly installed plaque to honor FF Bristol’s memory. The ceremony included remarks and a few shared memories about Kevin’s love for his family, friends and life; as well as an unveiling of the plaque.

Kevin’s wife, Kathi, and his family removed the cover, which was Kevin’s firefighting jacket, bearing his iconic badge #20, to unveil the plaque that stands with countless other heroes that have made the ultimate sacrifice at the memorial site.

Kevin John Bristol was born, raised, worked, and died in Peekskill. He was the fourth child of Owen and Joan, has one brother, and three sisters, Colleen, Maureen, and Chrissy. He was a man of great stature; only greater than his height was his heart. If you ask anyone in his Local Union 2343, all would say what a fair, loving person Kevin was.

He volunteered at the very department where he became a career man, just like his dad. He was a member of the PHS swim team, coaching after graduation. He was the kicker for the PHS football team. He studied at Texas Tech University, where he was a punter for the Red Raiders. He also served our nation as a corpsman for the Naval Reserves. He received many accolades professionally, but his greatest accomplishments were that of best friend, husband, dad, and papa.

Newest officer joins the force at Police Department

City Clerk Cassandra Redd administering the oath of office to Peekskill’s newest police officer.

Patrol Officer Fanny Tobin began her career at the Peekskill Police Department on Wednesday, March 20.

PO Tobin comes from the Town of Poughkeepsie Police Department, bringing a wealth of experience, which she brings to her duties in Peekskill.

PO Tobin is no stranger to Peekskill. Being a former resident and proud graduate of Peekskill High School, she brings with her a sense of community. Police Officer Tobin is conducting her field training with Field Training Officer Bulson. If you see her out and about, please introduce yourself and give her a warm welcome.

Con Edison continues remediation dredging project

Diagram of where the Con Edison project is happening at the riverfront.

Con Edison is resuming their remediation dredging project in Peekskill Bay, also known as the Pemart Avenue site.

The site’s former manufactured gas plant (MGP) operated from 1899 through 1931 and an electric generating plant also operated from 1905 to 1950. After the closure of the MGP, the site operated as a gas storage station until 1966. The primary contaminant of concern is coal tar and associated compounds.

Con Ed completed the first phase of remediation work on the upland property (OU-1) in 2022. The work in the bay (OU-2) is underway and is to be completed by November 2024.

The work will dredge and replace an estimated 10,000 cubic yards of contaminated material and construct an in-water fully submerged barrier wall and testing wells to limit and monitor future contamination of the waterway. The dredged material will be removed via barge and not via trucks.

A site-specific Health and Safety Plan and Community Air Monitoring Plan will be in place and Turbidity Monitoring will be conducted to assess conditions in the river.

Information is available on the Con Edison MGP website. Con Ed has also established a MGP Hotline (877) 602-6633 and will have an office trailer on the property at 175 N. Water Street.

Garden Club of Peekskill installs new officers

Newly installed members of the Garden Club are: from left, Maria McAndrew, Toni D’Angelo, Karen Wallis, Adrianna Waitkins, Ann Marie Hefele, Marge Trainor, Kamalini Martin, Carol Robinson, Sally Bentley and Mayor Vivian McKenzie.

Despite the rain and clouds on Tuesday, April 2, members of the Garden Club of Peekskill were in a jovial mood at their annual installation of officers at the Peekskill Yacht Club.

The Hudson River and mountains formed the perfect backdrop for the festive event that featured members hosting a luncheon with Mayor Vivian McKenzie swearing in the officers for new two-year terms.

Club members elected Maria McAndrew and Toni D’Angelo as co-presidents for a second term. Sally Bentley and Judy Malatino serve as co-vice-presidents while Carol Robinson is secretary with the assistance of Kamalini Martin as assistant secretary. Adrianna Waitkins is corresponding secretary with Karen Wallis as assistant corresponding secretary. Marge Trainor is treasurer and Ann Marie Hefele is assistant treasurer.

Club members brought tea cups and tea pots adorned with flowers and used as the centerpieces on tables during the luncheon. At the end of the program, a teapot, two cups and saucers and a little jam bowl with saucer were gifted to Mayor McKenzie to use in Kathleen’s Tea Room, now under construction.

After the luncheon, members discussed the Club’s Annual Plant Sale planned for Saturday, May 11 from 9 a.m. to 3p.m., rain or shine at Peekskill’s Riverfront Green. The event, always held the Saturday before Mother’s Day, features native perennials, hanging baskets (come early for best selection) vegetables and herbs started at Graymoor’s Damiano Farm and plants started by Woodside students. Proceeds support gardening projects, scholarships, youth activities and holiday wreaths for civic buildings.


Skinchanted Spa celebrates a dozen years in business

Mayor Vivian McKenzie (holding microphone) with Kerry Scardino, left, at the 12th anniversary celebration of Skinchanted Spa. To the right of Mayor McKenzie is Deputy Mayor Patricia Riley and Chamber Executive Director Carole Voisey. Both the City of Peekskill and Hudson Valley Gateway presented proclamations to Scardino.

In time for its 12th anniversary in business, Skinchanted Spa has launched a CBD product line, Skinchanted CBD.

The product, created in 2022, is derived from organic hemp grown in the USA, rigorously researched, and tested by third party labs. Focused on natural healing from the inside out, Skinchanted CBD can help improve lives by easing chronic pain, anxiety, and repairing internal and external damage for humans and pets alike.

The Skinchanted CBD product line currently includes intimacy oil, bath bombs, gummies, tinctures for humans and pets, topicals, sleep support aids, and comfort & relief capsules. Skinchanted CBD Massage oil is offered complimentary in every facial treatment at Skinchanted Spa and the company says client feedback has been overwhelming positive with remarks on improved texture, hydration and inflammation reduction.

Licensed Esthetician and owner of Skinchanted Spa Kerry Scardino knew that CBD would be life-changing for many of her client friends. Her journey to bring high-potency quality CBD products to the market was born out of personal experience and a desire to help others. After two major hip surgeries in her twenties led to chronic arthritis and anxiety, Kerry started using CBD to ease and soothe her mind and body.

Skinchanted CBD products can be ordered online at

Founded in 2012, Skinchanted Spa is a holistic day spa in Peekskill that specializes in facials, waxing, body treatments and oncology esthetics. It is located at 2 Stowe Road, Suite 12A (5th floor).

Ferric chloride spill reported at Sun Chemical


Sun Chemical on Lower South Street.

 A spill report was filed with the New York State Department of Environmental Conservation after an incident at the Sun Chemical plant on Lower South Street.

According to the report, 2,500 gallons of ferric chloride was spilled due to equipment failure at the plant. The incident happened in late February.

Sun Chemical’s parent, Japan-based DIC Corporation,  acquired the Peekskill plant from BASF Colors & Effects (BCE) in June 2021 as part of a larger deal.

The acquisition brought together the complementary portfolio of technologies, products, manufacturing assets, supply chain and customer service of the two companies to serve customers globally.

The purchase broadened Sun Chemical’s portfolio as a global manufacturer of pigments, including those for electronic displays, cosmetics, coatings, inks, plastics and specialty applications.

Soil, surface water and sewer were affected, according to the report. A spokesperson for the state did not respond to requests for comment from The Herald.

Little Sorrento offered ‘Throwback Prices ‘

When Little Sorrento’s opened in 1989 the price of a large pizza was $8.00. Yorktown Deputy Supervisor Ed Lachterman and his wife, left, with Gina and Paul DePaterio celebrate the couple’s 35th anniversary last Wednesday. 
Photo Credit: Thompson & Bender

A much-loved Italian restaurant in Northern Westchester celebrated its 35th anniversary by throwing it back to the late 1980’s.

Little Sorrento, located in Yorktown Heights since 1989, celebrated its 35th year in business during an event held on Wednesday, April 3.

To celebrate the momentous occasion, the business, owned by the DePaterio family, offered traditional dishes at the prices they would have been offered in 1989, including a chicken parmigiana dinner for $10.95 and a large pizza for $8.00.

The DePaterio and Sorrento families ran Sorrento’s restaurant, a long-time fixture in Peekskill on Railroad Avenue decades before moving to Yorktown. “From our family to yours, we thank you for sharing so many meals and special occasions with us,” the DePaterio family said.

The restaurant also enjoyed a visit from local officials such as Yorktown Deputy Supervisor Ed Lachterman, who celebrated the anniversary with the DePaterios.

“Little Sorrento’s specialty is creating a welcoming atmosphere that lets everyone feel like they are coming to grandma’s house for a delicious Sunday meal,” Lachterman said of the eatery.

Next Indian Point Oversight Board meeting April 25


The next session of the Indian Point Decommissioning Oversight Board will take place at 6 p.m. Thursday, April 25 at the Cortlandt Town Hall, 1 Heady St. in Cortlandt Manor. Doors open at 5:30 p.m.

Anyone wishing to attend the meeting, either in person or virtually, should register by noon Wednesday, April 24 using this form.

Public statements are invited concerning the scope and goals of the Task Force and the scope and goals of the Oversight Board. Statements may be provided by participants in person or virtually.

Priority will be given to those who pre-register to deliver a statement. Time permitting, additional statements may be made.

Participants and members of the public may attend the meeting virtually as follows:

Electronic Access: CLICK HERE or go to WWW.ZOOM.US/JOIN and enter the meeting information below.

Webinar ID: 826 5829 3736
Passcode: 566790

Phone-Only Access: Dial 1-929-205-6099 and enter the meeting information below when prompted.

Webinar ID: 826 5829 3736
Passcode: 566790

Billy Geis, prominent car dealership owner, dies at age 93

Bill Geis was involved in nearly every service organization in Peekskill.

A former car dealership owner from Northern Westchester, who spent more than 75 years serving the public as a firefighter, is being remembered for his immense impact on his community. Shrub Oak resident William “Billy” W. Geis Jr. died on Friday, March 29 at the age of 93, according to his obituary published by the Yorktown Funeral Home.

An iconic figure in Shrub Oak, Geis was known for owning car dealerships such as AMC Geis Motors, Geis Buick, and Geis Auto Mall in Shrub Oak and Cortlandt Manor.

Additionally, he was also the most senior member of the Mohegan Fire Department and served for more than 75 years, according to the department.

Born in 1930, Geis graduated from the Shrub Oak School in 1947 after playing quarterback for the football team. He then went on to receive an Associates Degree from Valley Forge Military Junior College in 1949 and also attended Syracuse University and New York University, majoring in accounting.

He began working in the automotive industry as early as 1950 when he joined his father at Shrub Oak Garage. This snowballed into Geis’s future car dealerships, which opened throughout the Hudson Valley.

“Through his vision, determination, and his dedicated team, he carved a path uniquely his own,” his obituary read.

He was also a loving husband, marrying Mary Della Hopkins in 1951 and enjoying a 51-year marriage with her while raising two daughters. After his wife’s death, he began the Mary Della Geis Specialty Care Unit at the Hudson Valley Hospital, which demonstrated the couple’s “commitment to giving back to others.” Later in life, Geis also married Glenda Rivera, spending many good times with her.

In addition to his dealerships and firefighter service, Geis’ unwavering dedication to serving his community impacted numerous organizations, including the Yorktown Elk Lodge BPOE 2324 and Yorktown Masonic Lodge 1054. He earned honors from the Peekskill Rotary Club, New York State Lions Club, Peekskill Elks Club, and the Hudson Valley Gateway Chamber of Commerce. He served on the Hudson Valley Hospital Foundation Board of Directors and was the Grand Marshal for their annual golf outing for decades. He was a Hudson Valley Hospital Center Corporate Honoree and received the Westchester County Community Service Award in 1992. He was recognized for his hiring commitment by the New York State Office of Mental Retardation and Developmental Disabilities with its Employer of the Year Award and received the Chester A. Smith Award for civic achievement from the Field Library. He was a lifelong member of the United Methodist Church of Shrub Oak, which played an integral role in his life.

In addition, he was chairman of Peekskill Savings Bank, trustee of Peoples Westchester Bank, a charter member of the 12th Man Club of the Army Football Team, and an honorary member of the Lakeland and Peekskill City School Districts’ Education Foundations. He was also a lifetime member of the Peekskill Yacht Club and the Mohegan Volunteer Fire Association, where he had more than 75 years of service and was recently honored as the Grand Marshal of their 100th Anniversary Parade.

Geis is survived by his wife, Glenda; his daughters, Susan and Debbie; his grandchildren, Missy, Scott, Billy, Kelly, Kristie, and Jacqueline; his great-grandchildren, Dakota, Kyla, Samara, Sadie, Della, Rowan, Ruby, Eve, Khloe, and Eli; and his sister, June.

A funeral service was held on April 6 at the United Methodist Church of Shrub Oak.


Zoom info session for teens seeking jobs April 11

On April 11, Westchester Library System’s Career Coaches will be hosting a workshop to help teens land that part-time or summer job.

Topics include what types of jobs are available for teens, where to look for jobs, how to answer questions on the job application, what to include in a resume and what to share and ask during an interview. The meeting is an online Zoom session. Registration is required – click here. For more information, call 914-231-3238.

Boonstra, long-time Buchanan resident, dies at 98

Piet Boostra was named “Road Rider of the Year” in 2002 by the American Motorcycle Association.

Piet Boonstra, a 98-year old long-time resident of Buchanan, died on March 27, 2024. He was a familiar figure as he drove through the local streets on his motorcycle.  Piet’s Frisian parents initially purchased a home on Seward Street in 1924, and he was born a year later in their home. He spent most of his life in Buchanan, except during wartime.

After serving in the Navy during WWII, and in the US Air Force during the Cold War in 1953 through 1955, he returned to his Buchanan home. He was employed for 25 years at IBM, where he led several major projects in the early computer world.

Along with his wife, Lillian, they raised five children. He was a proud grandfather of 10 grandchildren, and seven great grandchildren who all loved and admired him.

Piet was also a well-known, avid motorcyclist, and a lifelong member of the American Motorcycle Association for over 70 years. He and his wife Lillian eloped on his first motorcycle in 1948. He entered off-road endurance competition the same year, winning many regional and national championships.

At age 52, he turned his primary motorcycling interests to adventure touring, and he explored more than a million miles from Alaska and the Northwest Territories to the Yucatan Peninsula in Mexico, on all types of roads in all types of weather. He completed eight trips to Alaska over several different routes, and he ventured deep into Copper Canyon in the Sierra Madre Occidental Mountains of western Mexico, where he rode alone on a huge touring motorcycle.

He completed several long back-road tours of the US and Canada. He took his last solo cross-country motorcycle trip to Las Vegas at age 86. On most of his trips, Piet traveled alone; although occasionally he visited faraway places with his wife Lillian as a passenger; and occasionally with small groups of a few close friends. In 2002, he was named “Road Rider of the Year” by the American Motorcycle Association.

Piet served as president of three different motorcycle clubs, his favorite being the RAMS MC of New England where he served as president for almost 30 years. He also served as president of the Croton Historical Society for almost 20 years. He authored and self-published three books about his motorcycling, a biography of his brother Dirk, a brief autobiography; and he co-authored two books about the history of Croton-on-Hudson, NY.

A celebration of his life will be held on Saturday, April 20. More details are forthcoming. From Donna Boonstra Martin’s facebook post

Students learn about public safety work at Career Fair

Peekskill Middle School students at the emergency services table at a recent career day.

Three patrol officers from the Peekskill Police Department explained the work that public safety does for the community and talked with “future” members of Peekskill’s Emergency Response Teams at the recent Career Fair held at the Peekskill Middle School.

Police Officer Fries, Police Officer Stroh and Student Resource Officer Greenan spoke with students showing them what it takes to be a member of the city’s elite Emergency Response Teams Unit.


Affordable Housing Expo April 25 at the County Center

The 2024 Fair & Affordable Housing Expo will take place on April 27 from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. at the County Center in White Plains.

The free event, hosted by Westchester Residential Opportunities, will include workshops on homeownership, rental assistance, eviction prevention, and fair housing.

Workshop topics include: ‘The Path to Home Ownership,” “Fair and Affordable Rentals” and “Rental Assistance, Eviction Prevention and Fair Housing.”

Sponsors include Bank of America, Chase, Valley Bank, SONYMA, Emigrant Mortgage, HGAR and the Westchester County Department of Planning.

For information, contact [email protected] or call 914.428.4507.

Help with the college application process

Calling all juniors and seniors! The City of Peekskill Youth Bureau is hosting a College 2024 Bootcamp on Thursday, April 18 from 5:00 p.m. to 7:00 p.m.

Gain a better understanding of the college application process and receive 1-on-1 support from educators and youth leaders to help fill out applications.

For those who are interested in attending, please register here. For more information, please contact Tuesday Paige McDonald at [email protected]

Peekskill Police mourn in solidarity with NYPD

The members of the Peekskill Police Department stand with the NYPD in their time of loss.

Officers from the city joined the many who proudly gathered at the Westchester County Police Academy alongside over 50 Hudson Valley Law Enforcement Agencies to express solidarity in support of the family and friends of fallen NYPD Police Officer Jonathan Diller.

Raising funds for PO Diller’s family and organizing food donations, the participants of this showing joined one another in a motorcade, driving together to PO Diller’s command, the 105 PCT in Queens, to pay respects, show love, and present contributions. The members of the Diller Family and the NYPD have the continued support of the Peekskill Police Department.

The tip line is always open at the Peekskill Herald

Have a story idea that you’d like to see a reporter from The Herald check out? Ever think of a question that you wish someone would answer?

We always want to hear from our readers and here’s your way to reach us. Whether it’s a question regarding a specific event, an economic development project or just a trend you’ve noticed, we want to hear it.

Send us your questions. We’ll review and evaluate the submissions and select those we can answer. We’ll publish the story. Send your question to [email protected]


About the Contributor
Jim Roberts
Jim Roberts has been in this business for more than 35 years (hard to believe) and still learning every day. A third-generation Peekskill resident, he started as a lowly researcher at the Westchester Business Journal in 1986 and learned how to be a reporter from many veterans in the field. He’s worked in private companies, Connecticut state government and wrote for the Co-op City Times for 10 years before retiring from full-time work in 2019. Roberts wants to contribute to building the Herald into a news website for residents who care about what’s happening in Peekskill.