Brooklyn, meet your new kings of Kings!
Schneps Community News Group parent company Schneps Communications honored some of the borough’s best men at its annual Kings of Kings County Awards and networking event at Mill Basin’s El Caribe Country Club on Wednesday.
The honorees recognized for their community service included a host of admirable gentlemen, such as a New York City football legend, a World War II veteran, members of New York’s Bravest and Finest, a life-saving neurosurgeon, local business leaders, and many more — all of whom proudly represented their borough.
The men all share an unwavering enthusiasm for what they do, according to the event’s host.
“These fabulous men have been so successful because they have a passion for what they do. It is my privilege to recognize them,” said SCNG President and Publisher Victoria Schneps-Yunis.
The 2018 Man of the Year honors went to New York Jets veteran and CBS New York sports analyst Erik Coleman, who said he was honored to be in the company of such distinguished peers.
“I was really taken aback to hear that I’d been honored as the Man of the Year among all these amazing men, knowing what they do in the community,” said Coleman, who attended the evening with his wife Sabrina, a former Bensonhurst resident. “It’s humbling.”
And this year’s Living Legend award went to a veteran and lifelong Brooklynite of the Greatest Generation, who served five tours of duty during World War II.
“It’s a great honor,” said Coney Islander Albert Goldberg, who helped liberate Europe under General George Patton when he was just 21-years-old.
The vet recently celebrated his 96th birthday, and had some simple advice for those looking to live well into their golden years.
“You have got to have a good time, and you have got to dance,” Goldberg said.
The ceremony also honored a present-day hero, who saved a child’s life when a Bensonhurst building went up in flames in last August. Firefighter James Weinert, the recipient of the Community Hero award, said he saved the youngster while his colleagues pulled a pregnant woman and another child out of the blaze that fateful night.
“When we got to the door, we heard people on the other side, so we forced the door open and the fire’s right there,” said Marine Parker Weinert, who attended with his wife Heather. “I found the child down there and I pulled the child out.”
And a Boy in Blue who has patrolled the streets of Brooklyn for almost four decades took home the Community Leadership award for his work protecting the community, whose residents he said inspire him to put on his uniform each day.
“I get to help people I interact with on a daily basis, it may be a person I’ve know for 40 years, or maybe a person I met 10 minutes ago,” said 39-year Police Department veteran and Executive Officer of Patrol Borough Brooklyn South Charles Scholl.
The ceremony also recognized Dr. Erich Anderer, chief of neurosurgery at Sunset Park’s NYU Langone Hospital-Brooklyn, who said moving from the distant isle of Manhattan to the Borough of Kings allowed him to better appreciate the borough’s diverse and ever-evolving neighborhoods.
“Some of the other neighborhoods have changed so much they almost feel more like Manhattan, but I actually love Bay Ridge because it’s got a lot of old world Brooklyn, so it still feels like Brooklyn,” said Anderer, who lives with his wife and two children in Clinton Hill.
The event also held a raffle with all proceeds going to the DSNY Columbia Association, which helps children with disabilities.
And, of course, organizers gave special thanks its sponsors: Flushing Bank, Chase Bank, Ferrantino Fuel, Investors Bank, The Run NYC Team, Freedom Mortgage, Berger, Bischoff, Shumer, Weller & Goodman LLP, The Americans Dreams Foundation, Medcast Plus, and the DSNY Columbia Association.