Francis "Biggie" McDonough, a security fixture at a number of clubs and bars in Long Beach for almost 20 years, died June 17 at South Point Plaza nursing home in Island Park from complications of a stroke. He was 39.
"He was a well-known and respected member of the city's West End community and a go-to guy for many local fundraisers and charity events," said Kyle Christensen of Long Beach. "He was the gatekeeper, whether at [the now closed] Chauncey's on the Beach or Minnesota's [restaurant and bar]. His bellowing pronouncement 'Ladies and Gentlemen, the bar is now closed' is etched in the memory of friends and patrons."
John Gallagher, an owner of Minnesota's, said: "I always felt comfortable about my business and my patrons, knowing Biggie was watching the store. He took enormous pride in protecting the integrity of any establishment he worked."
A Cedarhurst native, McDonough was a 1992 graduate of Lawrence High School, where he starred on the football field.
"He was a true sports fan who took pride in his talent for laying odds, and welcomed anyone to challenge his expertise," Gallagher said. "He loved the Giants, Rangers and Yankees . . . anything New York."
McDonough was an active member of the Ancient Order of Hibernians, St. Brendan the Navigator, Division 17, and reveled in all things Irish, said his friends.
"He was a confidante, mentor, protector and friend," said Hugh Raiten, the bar manager at Jimmy Hays in Island Park. "He taught us all the meaning of friendship and loyalty."
Raiten said McDonough was a recognizable and welcoming figure at many of Long Beach's best-known hot spots.
He is survived by a brother, John, of Oceanside; and two sisters, Kathleen and Alice, both of Levittown.
A Mass of Christian Burial will be celebrated at St. Joachim Roman Catholic Church in Cedarhurst at 9:45 a.m. Wednesday.
The body will be cremated immediately after.