Pat Weingrow of Smithtown recalls the summer day she met her future husband, Harvey.
It was Labor Day weekend in 1961. My friends were all going to the mountains for the last hurrah of the summer. One of my friends and I decided not to join them and instead opted to go to the beach at National Boulevard in Long Beach to work on our tans. I was from Middle Village, Queens, but would often go to that beach and to dance clubs in the area with my friends on Friday nights.
We put our blanket on the sand and as we were about to sit down, a football landed at my feet. I turned around to see someone standing there. He said, “I am very sorry, but the football was thrown over my head by my friend.” He stayed and we talked for a while. His name was Harvey Weingrow and he lived in Far Rockaway, Queens. I told him my name was Pat Fried. He then went back to have a catch with his friend.
That night my friend and I went to a party in Valley Stream and there he was, the same guy I had met on the beach. We were both very surprised to see each other. Neither of us knew the people throwing the party. We talked and danced the whole night. We talked about everything and learned we shared the same views and values. Before the party was over, Harvey asked me on a date for the next Saturday. He was 23, and I was 19.
He picked me up for our first date and met my parents. Then he took me to what was at the time the Boulevard nightclub on Queens Boulevard in Elmhurst. At the end of the evening he asked if I would like to go to a movie the next weekend. I said, “Yes.”
On our second date, as we drove along the Long Island Expressway to the Glen Cove movie theater, Harvey asked me what I thought about us being together. I responded, “You mean go steady?” He laughed and said, “Yes, for the rest of our lives.” I was a little shocked, but I said, “Yes.” I’m usually indecisive, but I was sure about this.
When he took me home that night, my mother was sitting at the top of the stairs with a big smile on her face. She said she was waiting for the news.
She told me then that the minute she met Harvey she knew he was the one for me. Mom was right. On Sept. 16, 1962, just one year from the time we met, we were married at Temple Gates of Prayer in Flushing.
We moved to a small apartment in Hewlett and the next year purchased our first house in Baldwin. We raised our son and daughter there. Harvey was president of Little League, president of Dads and Boosters and was the voice of the Baldwin Bruins football team. He also coached Little League, Babe Ruth baseball and PAL basketball. Together we were the campaign managers for several Baldwin Union Free School District board members who had successful runs.
After 28 happy years in Baldwin, we moved to Smithtown in 1992. I retired that year as office assistant at a fabric wholesale business in Freeport. Harvey had a long career in the automotive business and retired in 2010.
Fifty-six years, two children, eight grandchildren and one great-grandchild later, we are still as much in love (maybe more) than we were so many years ago.