K of C Free Throw In Queens-A No Go+The Night Which Almost Didn’t Happen

26 Feb

I recall the 1998 Queens County Knights of Columbus International Free Throw Basketball Championship as an event on Monday, March 2nd, 1998, as a Championship Round which almost didn’t occur.
This event was chaired by a Member of Msgr Sherman Council #5103 Knights of Columbus. But this guy never contacted any of the Schools, which when I was Grand Knight of 5103, I had to scramble like Mr Fran Tarkington of NFL Vikings and Giants Fame. In short, I spoke with both the Queens Board of District Deputies and St. Thomas Recreation Association in Woodhaven, Queens and obtained Msgr Mulz Hall on Jamaica Avenue at 88th Street.
Negotiations for the Quite Nice Facility took place over 1 Week in February, 1998. There was a Deadline. The Deadline was met.
Two District Deputies told the Queens Board of District Deputies that I was in the process of obtaining the Free Throw Facility. I had the backing of the Queens Board of District Deputies to get this Parish Hall.
The Deadline was met. And from all over Queens, Councils and Districts sent their District Champions.
Eugene Bullock(Now Retired to a Warmer Climate), is the guy I negotiated with. He was the One who coordinated the St. Thomas Apostle Recreation Association.  I never met a more agreeable gentleman to do business with. None of this was done with email. Rather the securing of the facility was done by Phone and in person.
The Two District Deputies, Richard Steimle and Luke Lamberson, spoke with the Queens Board about the Emergency Arrangements and that I was noted for getting the job done in regards to obtaining Contest Facilities. I thank these gentlemen for espousing what I was doing.
Yet, the Chairman for the Queens County Championship never acknowledged my role in saving the Competition from Oblivion.  He thanked his younger brother, but not me.  This Chairman had a bone to pick with me for prior Political Actions of a Disagreeable Nature.

Hey, the Job was done & the Competition was played. In one Historic 5103 Moment in Woodhaven, at Msgr Mulz Hall, 13 Girls 5103 Champion Adele Reyes, who lived close to the Brooklyn-Queens Border on Ridgewood Avenue, about a half block from Elderts Lane, where the Border runs, as she actually lives on the Brooklyn Side, won the Queens County Championship, in her Home Parish Facility for the 1st Time.  For it was in this competition when in 1996, 14 Girls QueensNY County Champion Gloria Kim, changed the Ethnic Composition of the 5103 Competition. Adele won the 11 Girls Competition for Woodhaven Council 1866, @ Holy Cross High School in North Flushing, on Friday, February 28th, 1996, on the same night when Gloria Kim made History. Adele was not only the 1st Contestant to win the Queens County Championship on her Home Parish Court, Adele is both the 1st Latina Champion and the 1st Brooklyn Resident Champion representing Council 5103.

We had Jewish Queens County Champions via Our Lady of Mercy in Forest Hills in 1997 and 1999. 14 Girls Jennifer Barenboim & 13 Boys in 1997, Daniel Thalblum, broke the Religious Line in the Queens County Championship. Now, I used to put up with East Glendale Members who often cried out that I should have only allowed Sacred Heart Parish in the Competition. But I looked at this as an Athletic Competition, where children have fun competing for a chance at another round. When 11 Girls Champion Keandra Leong,from 5103 from Our Lady of Mercy-Forest Hills, won the New York State Final, Tears streamed down my face.

So, as fewer councils run this competition, a Tradition is fading away. And now it may have played out the course.
But, being an optimist, the Competition will make a comeback. For the Faded Competition, remember these words:
“Absence Makes The Heart Grow Fonder.”
For an Absence of The Competition from 2001 until 2003, caused for a Spectacular Return. Sadly Though, the ones who sabotaged the 1999 Competition, also sabotaged the 2003 Competition. One of the Saboteurs actually served as Grand Knight in the time of the 2000 & 2001 Competitions, going out of his way to cause people to lose interest, going as far as to cheat a Competitor, because of a Strategic Alliance with Somebody in the Competing Council, to sabotage that Council. They hated Success and feared a Knights of Columbus Council which was truly Active and Catholic in Service. The Saboteurs, according to a source, are members of an organization which One, Holy, Catholic & Apostolic Church, has condemned since the 1st Papal Encyclical in 1738. Let’s just say that their God Is MAN.
May The Knights of Columbus International Free Throw Basketball Championship make a Glorious Return.

“Deum De Deo, Lumen De Lumine!”


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