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Old Westbury: All roads lead to the Seacrest

On Memorial Day weekend 1982, five men from

On Memorial Day weekend 1982, five men from Brooklyn started on a two-day rampage that culminated in approximately 80 people being held hostage at the Seacrest Diner Restaurant in Old Westbury. On Friday, police said Bruce Garrison, James Martin, Robert Samuels and brothers Michael and Robert Williams stole a Cadillac from a Brooklyn garage. Later that night, the men invaded the Plainview home of Thomas and Janet Reilly. The five men raped, beat, robbed and urinated on guests at a party hosted by the couple's 20-year-old son. Their crime spree culminated on Saturday as the men burst into the Seacrest Diner wielding handguns and shotguns. They terrorized approximately 80 patrons and staff members, robbing them, demanding they strip and ordering hostages to have sex with each other. Two men were shot and at least one waitress was raped. Robert Williams plead guilty to more than 100 felonies and received a sentence of 15 to 30 years in prison. Garrison and Michael Williams were also given 15 to 30 year sentences. Martin and Samuels were given life in prison after police connected them with a prior murder. -- Compiled by Sara-Megan Walsh Photo Credit: Newsday / Erica Marcus

The Seacrest diner occupies a prime spot at the traffic-jammed convergence of Jericho Turnpike and Glen Cove Road, the Northern State and Meadowbrook Parkways. This morning I had a perfect breakfast there.

Sitting down at the counter, I was immediately charmed by the old-fashioned paper place mats bearing photos of and recipes for 19 cocktails. The Seacrest has a full bar so I could have ordered a kamikaze (lime juice, triple sec and vodka) but I contented myself with a cup of good coffee. While I waited for my order, I flipped over the place mat and connected the dots to create a cute little lamb, found my way through a maze, and unscrambled some “Dizzy Doodles.” I am easily amused.

Eggs came exactly as ordered, over easy with no runny whites. Sausages were well done. Waitresses were friendly and attentive and perhaps it’s the years I lived in Baltimore but I am a sucker for being called “hon.” “Ready to order, hon?” “More coffee, hon?” “Would you like singles, hon?”

Seacrest Diner is at 4 Glen Cove Rd., Old Westbury, 516-741-0580.

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