Troubled by the apathetic turnout
I find reports that there was
a poor voter turnout for Queens
DA to quite troubling.
There are 766,117 registered
Democrats and yet only about
85,000 bothered to show up and
vote. I find this very sad.
When we don’t vote, the
wrong person could get elected
who either is not qualified or
doesn’t have the best interest of
the people. The Queens District
Attorney office is a very
important and concerns all of
us in Queens. Whoever holds
this job affects all law abiding
Now the race between
Tiffany Caban and Melinda
Katz is not decided yet, but if
Caban wins, I hope Katz has
other options. I hope the Queens
County Republican Party
offers her an option to run in
the general election opposing
Caban. I believe Katz has the
best interest of the people in
Queens at heart, and desires to
keep the people safe.
Frederick R. Bedell Jr.,
Glen Oaks Village
Editor’s note: As of press
time Tuesday afternoon — the
deadline moved up by a day
ahead of the July 4 holiday —
the results of the Queens district
attorney primary remain
unofficial, pending the July 3
count of paper ballots. Joann
Ariola, chair of the Queens
County Republican Party,
dismissed reports last week
that the party was considering
reaching out to Borough
President Melinda Katz about
possibly running for DA on the
Republican line in November.
Check QNS.com for the final
results of the primary as they
are made available.
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A QUEENS HERO
Astoria’s own Luis Alvarez received a welldeserved
hero’s farewell on July 3, as the retired
NYPD bomb squad detective and 9/11 first responder
was honored with a funeral Mass.
Alvarez died on June 29 from 9/11-related cancer.
Although Alvarez was born in Havana, Cuba,
he was raised in the Ditmars section and went to
Monsignor McClancy Memorial High School in East
Elmhurst graduating in 1983 and joining the Marines
before entering the NYPD in 1990 where he was
assigned to the 108th Precinct in Long Island City.
Following the Sept. 11, 2001 terrorist attacks at the
World Trade Center, Alvarez joined several thousand
first responders on the rubble of Ground Zero
searching for survivors and then their remains.
For three months Alvarez was on “the pile”
inhaling the toxic dust that remained following the
collapse of the twin towers.
“We were told the air was safe down there and
it wasn’t,” Alvarez said. “But you know what, that
doesn’t matter. Because we would have went in
anyway. Because that’s what we do. It’s not a job for
us. It’s a calling.”
That’s how heroes speak.
After retiring from the NYPD in 2010, Alvarez was
diagnosed with colorectal and liver cancer in 2016.
Alvarez threw himself into advocating for fellow first
responders by lobbying Congress for the permanent
reauthorization of the 9/11 Victims Compensation
n June 11, Alvarez appeared weak and frail as
he testified before the House Judiciary Committee
alongside fellow first responder John Feal and
comedian Jon Stewart. But his inner strength shined
through his testimony.
While Stewart raged against the panel for taking
years to make the program permanent and wasting
the time of first responders who have traveled to
Capitol Hill repeatedly, Alvarez told them he was
scheduled for his 69th round of chemo the next day,
and reminded them of their commitment to leave no
victim of 9/11 behind.
“You all said you would never forget,” he said.
“Well, I’m here to make sure that you don’t.”
The following day, the Judiciary Committee voted
unanimously to pass the bill. But during Alvarez’s
chemo appointment, it was determined that his liver
was failing and he was moved to hospice on June 20.
After meeting with Alvarez’s colleaqgues, Senate
Majority Leader Mitch McConnell committed to
bringing the bill to a vote in the Senate.
It’s time for him and his Senate Republicans to do
their jobs and extend the VCF.
HOW TO REACH US
He was 53.
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16 TIMESLEDGER, JULY 5-11, 2019 BT QNS.COM