Well, we still haven’t heard from Dr. Richard Gagliardi, town supervisor hopeful, regarding the numerous interview requests we’ve sent to his camp.
But we did hear from his campaign manager, Frank Morganthaler, and Frank is not happy with Trainjotting. Frank calls us out for our lack of military service (guilty as charged), for making light of the issue of basement flooding (Hey, we flood too. We stress it. We hate it.), and for focusing too much on trains and train stations in our train commuting blog Trainjotting. (Hey, answer the interview questions about Mount Pleasant’s lack of sidewalks and then we can branch beyond the train station a bit!).
Mr. Morgenthaler also takes issue with the critical tone in which we described the YouTube series announcing Dr. Gagliardi’s candidacy, which Trainjotting commenters seem to be enjoying.
As such, it does not appear that Dr. Gagliardi will be answering our campaign questions.
But we do learn a few things from Mr. Morganthaler’s comment. We learn who the unidentified gentleman in the red blazer is (Frank Morganthaler), and the significance of the red blazer (Marine Corps service…honorable in my book).
We also learn that the Gagliardi camp seems a bit thin skinned–especially for someone running for public office.
Mr. Morganthaler was previously campaign manager for Mount Pleasant’s own Jim Russell in his 2010 Congressional bid, reports a Journal News blog, which was derailed when the candidate’s views on race relations came to light.
Morganthaler’s post below:
In response to your article “Who is Richard Gagliardi?” – I would like to address some of your opinionated comments.
Re: “the usually affable Joan Maybury”- I think that if you met Dr. Gagliardi, you would find him to be a “usually affable” fellow, as well.
Re: “some low lying corner of Mt. Pleasant” – The location where Dr. Gagliardi announced his candidacy is actually a very nice neighborhood, made up of residents, who have been subjected to serious, repetitive flooding problems for years. The Town (encompassing a number of administrations) has ignored their requests for help. The “basement flooding” of which you speak, is a bit more than an inch or two of water seeping into their basements. Water rose to heights of 5 to 6 feet in many of these homes, causing thousands of dollars in damages, displacing the families who lived there until repairs could be made, and endangering the health of these residents (seniors and children) due to exposure to raw sewerage that backed up into their homes and mold which developed from the flooding. Many of these homes face flooding issues every time there is a rain storm, not, just from hurricane conditions. They have incurred damages in the tens of thousands of dollars from these events. Simple “basement flooding” – I think not. You might learn more about these issues, if you could drag yourself away from your lofty perch at the Station, and get out and speak with residents about the real issues facing Mt. Pleasant residents.
Re: “flanked by glum looking family members and what appears to be a bodyguard” – Over the years, I have found that before making assumptions or judgments, it is best get some factual information about the subject matter in question, or, in this case the subjects, before making any critical statements. It is obvious from your judgmental commentary that you did not research the event that you write about here. For your information, the “glum looking family members” were not family members. Dr. Gagliardi had only one family member in attendance. But, I would be happy to inform you of who some of those other “glum” individuals were. One young man is an active duty member of our military (U.S. Army), who has served multiple tours of duty in Iraq and Afghanistan. Quite possibly, he has some reason for being “glum”. Some of the others in attendance were homeowners, who live in that “low lying corner of Mt. Pleasant”, who have watched their homes and their lives be destroyed by the “basement flooding” you mention. Quite possibly, these folks have some reason to look “glum” also. These residents, your neighbors, have sought help from successive Town administrations, but, to no avail. Further, the gentleman, who you describe as “a bodyguard”, is actually a long time friend and a neighbor of Dr. Gagliardi, who merely came out to support him. Personally, I believe that you owe this man an apology for your disparaging and prejudicial remarks against him. Again, just some advice that you might want to consider before writing future articles – get the facts first, so you don’t embarrass yourself, like you have done here.
Re: “introduced by a distinguished colleague” and “same fellow above in red coat” – I am that individual. For the record, I really didn’t need to introduce myself to those in attendance that day. They know me well. And, yes, I am the “same fellow above in the red coat”. For your information, I take great pride in being able to wear that particular red coat (most cannot), because it signifies that I served my Country as a member of the United States Marine Corps. But, I guess you wouldn’t know about that. (By the way, Mike, what branch of the service did you serve in? – you are of an age (42) where you could be serving now) I would also like to provide you with a little background on the photo that you “borrowed” from the good Doctor’s website. It was taken at a ceremony to honor two brave young soldiers (Westchester residents) killed last year while serving their Nation. The event took place on Sunday, September 25, 2011, at Kensico Dam Plaza, where two plaques were unveiled in honor of these men. Kensico Dam Plaza is part of the Town of Mt. Pleasant. Accordingly, one would expect that the elected officials of the Town would have been there to show respect to the families of those lost. However, not one of them attended. Other than Dr. Gagliardi, no other candidates running for office in Mt. Pleasant attended either. Elected officials from other areas of Westchester County were there, as they should have been, but, apparently Mt. Pleasant officials, in whose jurisdiction the event was held, and candidates running for Town positions, didn’t feel the event to be important enough to attend.
Mike – I would like to offer you a little advice, that I hope you will consider – there is life outside the “Station”. You should get out more and experience it. Learn about the very serious issues facing ALL residents of this Town that are not related to the “Station”. It is admirable that you put so much time and effort into the Hawthorne Train Station. However, in the overall scheme of Mt. Pleasant, the Station is merely a very small issue and concern to the 43,000 plus residents of the Town. There are many larger and more important issues facing the People of this Town.