Sound Off to the Editor

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To the editor,

I read with great interest Colin Mixson’s articles regarding the late Horace Bullard, and his attempts to rebuild Steeplechase Park and the former Loew’s Shore Theater.

The comments, by people whom I know and respect, about “his revenge” and “bitterness” are not the Horace Bullard that I knew. Let me first state that my children are fourth-generation Coney Islanders, my family beginning with my maternal grandfather in 1902.

When Fred Trump was building Trump-Warbasse Houses, I founded the Neighborhood Improvement Organization in 1964, and by 1968 our group supported his plan to build luxury housing on the Steeplechase site. The Coney Island Chamber of Commerce and the Board of Trades opposed him, and got the elected officials to turn him down. As a co-founder of the Astella Development Corporation we wanted to see Coney’s Amusement area rebuilt, and we saw that opportunity in Horace Bullard.

I met with him many times, and he was a gentlemen’s gentleman. His failure in Coney Island was not racial. It was because he was an “outsider” and the powers to be were not going to let him in on their “turf.” The Bullard family deserves every dollar they can get from their properties. Ralph Perfetto

Coney Island

Free therapy

To the editor,

I was very happy to read your article “New and improved rehab therapy” about the speech therapy services offered for seniors at NYU Lutheran (“Standing O,” online Feb. 11).

It sounds like a great program. Since speech therapy can help people at all ages in life, I would like to address a speech therapy issue that could benefit many children in Brooklyn with speech difficulties.

I just want to mention the little-known fact that every child in the U.S. has the right to free speech therapy. This amazing benefit of free speech therapy covers all speech problems and is open to all children, as it is not an entitlement based on family income. The result of federal legislation 42 years ago, the free therapy can begin as early as preschool and run through high school. All children are eligible as it is not an entitlement based on family income. The free therapy covers all speech problems. The best source for parents to gain information on this right to free speech therapy is a brochure entitled “Special Education Law and Children Who Stutter” on the website of the nonprofit Stuttering Foundation ( This website also offers many free resources to people who stutter of all ages and there is a Spanish-language version at

What is sad is that during the heated national debate on national healthcare policy over the last seven years, not once did the media ever make mention of this long-standing gem in our national healthcare policy. The U.S. has by far the best policy in the world for helping children with speech problems, and is a role model for the rest of the world. It is a shame that few people in the U.S. know about this amazing benefit of free speech therapy for all kids.

Ed Herrington

Longmeadow, MA

‘Bulldoze’ Brownsville

To the editor,

I’ve been living in Brooklyn in and around the Brownsville section for nearly 35 years. This neighborhood is terrible. I’ve heard stories about how, many years ago, this was a great place to live with some of the best shopping anywhere. Brownsville was a predominately Jewish neighborhood for many years, made up of hard-working, poor residents.

This neighborhood like most others always had a criminal element, but nothing like it is today. This small area — the birthplace of Murder Inc., — is full of public housing that is also full of gangs, drugs, guns, and crime. Young people in this area don’t have much of a chance of living a peaceful or long life. Either the gangs or the drugs will get you at a young age, and hold onto you until you’re either in jail or six feet under.

I wonder what the heck is going on here. Every day there are gunfights, rapes, robberies, no respect for anyone, especially not for anyone in authority — not for teachers, not for cops, not for neighbors, not for friends, not for family, not even for themselves.

The only thing to do in this area would be to bulldoze it and make a cemetery out of it, as a reminder to everyone around here that the people who lived here killed a neighborhood and everyone in it.

Shanequa Johnson

Crown Heights

English first

To the editor,

Jeez, it is bad enough that whenever I go into stores and into the subway I see all signs in English and Spanish. Now I’m seeing Spanish as first choice for a comic strip’s language, and English is written below the strip in fine print.

Jump Start in the Daily News is the comic I am referring to. What a bummer! Stop this baloney now. Why are you kowtowing to those who refuse to learn English? Do not grovel to non-English speakers, nor be servile to them. Thirty-one states have made English their official language. I’m sorry to say that New York still has not done this.

When I buy an English-language newspaper, and have done so since the 1950s when my dad was a linotype operator at the Daily News, I do not expect — and absolutely object — to seeing a daily cartoon written in Spanish. This upsets me to no end, seeing this as I am eating my breakfast. If this intrusion continues, I will be ending my “lifetime subscription” to New York’s “hometown paper.” That is a promise. Cross my heart.

The Courier (a weekly and delivered neighborhood newspaper) suits me fine!Joan Applepie

Mill Basin

Sean Penn-alty

To the editor,

Sean Penn who was never a stranger to controversy really crossed the line meeting with El Chapo. I’m not a lawyer, but this egomaniac had to break some serious laws interviewing probably the biggest drug kingpin on the world, not to mention the thousands of murders and thousands of families destroyed because of his greed and complete disregard for human life. They don’t get much worse than this monster.

I guess Sean Penn would also have met with Osama bin Laden after he killed thousands of innocent people on 9-11, and promised not tell authorities where he could be found so that he could get the interview and movie deal of his life. I guess fame and fortune is more important to El Chapo and “El Pompous Culo” than life itself. Maureen Parker



To the editor,

I applaud the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers in South Korea for taking the steps to promote S.T.E.M. Education to the students in the Far East District in South Korea (“Sparking Engineering Interest in Kids,” Jan. 15).

As educators we are always looking for ways to empower our youth. I came across a wonderful quote by Michael J. Fox that really gives meaning to the word educate: “If a child can’t learn the way we teach, maybe we should teach the way they learn.”

All students learn differently. You have verbal-linguistic, word-smart learners. These students learn best through reading, writing, listening, and speaking. You have the logical-mathematical learners. These students learn best by classifying, categorizing, and thinking abstractly about patterns and numbers. You have the visual-spatial, picture-smart learners that excel at drawing and visualizing things. You have the auditory-musical students that thrive on singing and listening to music. You have the bodily-kinesthetic learners that do extremely well when they work with their hands. You have the interpersonal learners that learn through relating to others and sharing ideas. You have the intrapersonal- intelligent students that work best alone, setting up their own goals. You have the naturalistic learners that love working with nature. These students excel in the sciences and are very passionate about our environment.

Let’s model the success of the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers and collaborate with its north Atlantic division at Fort Hamilton to help empower Brooklyn students and map out a plan for STEM education initiatives in our local schools. We need outside resources — such as the Office of Naval Research, and the Society of Naval Architects and Marine Engineers — to help explore and discover education leading to successful career opportunities in the army and navy.

Scott Krivitsky

The author is a teacher a t PS 188 in Coney island.

Tricky Hill

To the editor,

Hillary has to be one of the luckiest people on earth. Could you imagine winning six coin tosses in a row for the Iowa delegates? Wow! What are the odds? She should play the stock market or commodities market. Oh, wait, she did — almost 40 years ago she turned $1,000 into $100,000 in no time, lucky her.

I think she might have flimflammed poor Bernie the Socialist, maybe they used some double-sided coins she supplied them with, in case a coin toss was necessary or maybe he agreed to the old “heads-I win-tails-you-lose” trick. I could just picture her having him pick the cup the little ball was under while she scrambled them around, or the old odd finger trick throwing out the whole hand and telling him that was wild, she wins. Or even the old eenie-meenie-minee-moe trick, and tell him “and out goes you!”

However she did it, I guess we’ll never know — she is a pro.

Cronin Miller


Nuke mook

To the editor,

So now it’s the little fat guy with the bad haircut from North Korea trying to shakedown America by pounding his chest like a gorilla to show his strength so he doesn’t have to fight another gorilla. We used to call this “selling woof tickets” when we were kids growing up in Brooklyn — it was all for show.

Obviously President Obama, who is said to be a poker player, probably isn’t a very good one because he can be bluffed over and over again. I doubt Obama ever read Trumps’ book “Art of the Deal” or Sun Tzu’s “The Art of War,” a book written more than 2,000 years ago, and still used today by generals and leaders all over the world. Obama telegraphs his intentions to our enemies, telling them when we are sending troops and when we are leaving, complete with date and time. He traded five hardened terrorists for Bowe Bergdahl, a deserter whom he praised and who is now being court marshaled.

Obama made a deal with the devils of Iran, a country whose mantra is “Death to America,” giving them billions of dollars and withdrawing sanctions so they won’t continue making a nuclear bomb. They went back on their word and broke the agreement before the ink was even dry. So now the little fat guy with the bad haircut is going to see what he can get from Obama, like some other tyrants will certainly be doing soon because they only have about another year before he leaves office. They have to work fast, but they also know that if the new president has some cojones, like a Trump for instance, they will be out of luck.

Let’s not forget Iran held 52 Americans hostage for 444 days during the Carter administration. Jimmy Carter — a good, decent and very intelligent man, but a poor president in many ways — wasn’t respected at all by the Ayatollah of Iran at the time. Yet only hours after Ronald Reagan was sworn in, the hostages were released. Any guess why?

Maybe Trump is pounding his chest with his fists like the others who have been shaking Obama down, and maybe he isn’t, but either way I really don’t think those who bully Obama will try their crap on a Trump.

Peter G. Orsi

Marine Park

Reader wars

To the editor,

In response to J.J. Lauria (“Elliott Kibosh,” Sound Off to the Editor,” Dec. 18, 2015), I proposed sodium pentothal (truth serum) for terrorists and other violent criminals and suspects because I regard America to be very hypocritical in trying to preach and teach justice abroad when we can’t practice it at home.

Are not the members of the Ku Klux Klan — whose ranks included late President Harry Truman, late Sen. Robert Byrd (D-W-Va.), and late Supreme Court Judge Hugo Black — and the American Nazi and Communist parties terrorists? Yet the First Amendment guarantees them the right to speak freely within the confines of reason.

Supreme Court Judge Abe Fortas, who served from 1965 until 1969, was a member of the Community Party, and even his most vocal critics — Sen. Howard Baker (R-Tenn.) and Sen. Strom Thurmond (R-S.C.) — did not even bother to bring this issue up during his nomination because he was a hawk on the Vietnam War.

I would also like to point out to J.J. Lauria that if we engage in waterboarding what will our enemies do to our imprisoned soldiers? Remember, what is sauce for the goose is sauce for the gander.

Elliott Abosh

Brighton Beach

Chapter and verse

To the editor,

I am writing to convey my dismay at my treatment at a branch of the Brooklyn Public Library, where I went to replace a lost card. When I attempted to inquire about a new card at a room marked “staff” I was rudely told that I was in a staff work area. Someone vaguely gestured toward a hidden information desk, without standing up. At least four staffers were drinking coffee from large painted mugs.

I am a semi-retired, visually impaired senior citizen who has lived in Sheepshead Bay for 59 years. Two days after my family moved to the neighborhood in 1956, my father took me to the library to show me a place of “learning and safety.” He would be very surprised at the way library consumers are treated there today. When I reached the information desk and asked about renewing my card I was met with blank stares from two staffers. After repeating my question two times I was told to go to the computer behind the desk. A staffer expressed impatience when the computer was slow to reboot. She said she did not have time to hold my hand and said I should “just fill in the blanks and press send.” I asked how long it would take to obtain a new card and she clearly said one to two weeks.

I returned to the library in the given time period to inquire about my card. Two staffers ignored me until I asked to see a supervisor. Within five minutes I had a new card. One of the unnamed staffers asked me why I had waited so long to come back to the library. When I asked the supervisor what she was going to do about the way I was treated, she said she would meet with the staff “sometime in the future.” I returned to the library a few days later to pick up a book for my wife and asked a staffer about the supervisor that I had spoken to. I was told that she was at an all-day meeting. I went back to the library the next day and asked to talk to a supervisor. I was told they were off until the following month.

That Saturday I went to the library to read a newspaper. The supervisor I originally talked with suddenly appeared and asked to speak with me. With her voice raised so that all of my friends and neighbors in the room could hear, she said she hoped that we could be good friends and that I could be a “star” of the library. I told her that I had called the New York City Human Rights commissioner to lodge a complaint for discrimination. She said loudly that was my right. As she continued to talk to me in a raised voice she was joined by two other staffers. I left the library immediately because I felt embarrassed and confronted.

Martin Adelstein

Sheepshead Bay


Off-track Andy

To the editor,

There is more to Gov. Andrew Cuomo’s announcement that the Metropolitan Transportation Authority- New York City Transit will increase rehabilitation for subway stations to a state of good repair by 10-percent to 50-percent from originally 20 planned in the proposed 2015-2019 capital plan. The original $34 billion plan announced in Oct. 2014 proposed $448 million for bringing 20 subway stations to a state of good repair. The plan was cut by $6 billion to $28 billion. The MTA Board approved this revision. That was prior to Cuomo’s declaration about increasing the number of stations (or dollars) for New York City Transit’s renewal program. This plan still needs approval by the State Capital Program Review Board. It also requires the State Legislature to find $8 Billion promised by Gov. Cuomo. The City Council must also come up with $2.5 billion to meet commitments made by Mayor Bill DeBlasio to fully fund the capital plan..

If you increase the number of stations, the overall station renewal program would grow by $224 million to $672 million. Just what other transit capital projects and programs would have to be cut to support finding $224 million? Cuomo was silent on this key question.

According to a New York City Citizens Budget Commission report released several months ago, it will take 52 years or until 2067 for all 468 city subway stations to reach a state of good repair. Cuomo’s math just doesn’t add up. He reminds me of the cartoon character Wimpy who famously said, “I’ll gladly pay you Tuesday for a hamburger today.” When the bills become due, taxpayers will end up paying Cuomo’s bill.

Larry Penner

Great Neck. N.Y.

Tarnished Silver

To the editor,

The legacy of former State Assembly Speaker Sheldon Silver in the area of transportation leaves much to be desired. Consider the schedule, budget, and the cost for four major transportation projects that he took great pride in promoting.

Washington paid twice with your tax dollars for building the new South Ferry subway station. First, for almost $600 million in 9-11 funding, a second time with more than $300 million in Hurricane Sandy funding to rebuild what was damaged. The downtown Manhattan Fulton Street Transit Center was first paid for with 9-11 funding. Cost overruns of several hundred million were covered by American Recovery Reinvestment Act funding.

Fourteen years after 9-11, the Cortland Street World Trade Center subway station is still several years away from being back in service. If there are no new delays, perhaps the station will reopen by December 2018. Transit officials fought for years over budget, funding sources, scope, and schedule. Construction for the Metropolitan Transportation Authority portion of the project just started a few months ago.

There is no funding in the agency’s propose 2015-2019 capital program to initiate construction for the second segment of the Second Avenue subway, north from 96th Street to 125th Street. It will take several decades and $20 billion more for completion of the next three segments of the Second Avenue subway, north to 125th Street and south to Hanover Square downtown in the financial district. The project was originally proposed in 1929!

Silver claimed to be a friend of both commuters and the 99 percent. In reality, he lived the life style of the one percenters. He frequently traveled around town with a personal driver at taxpayers’ expense. I doubt if he ever purchased a MetroCard or rode the subway, like several million New Yorkers do daily.

Larry Penner

Great Neck, N.Y.

Two-fare drone

To the editor,

The proposal by state Sen. Marty Golden (R-Bay Ridge) to offer two free transfers for those who have to ride two buses before boarding a subway is wishful thinking. People who moved to Bay Ridge, Dyker Heights, Bensonhurst, Marine Park, Gerritsen Beach and Gravesend — areas represented by Golden — knew full well that they would be living in a two-fare (bus to subway) and sometimes three-fare (bus to bus to subway) zone with longer commutes to and from work.

Metropolitan Transportation Authority services continue to be one of the best bargains in town. Since the 1950s, the average cost of riding either the bus, subway or commuter rail has gone up at a lower rate than either the consumer price index or inflation. The MetroCard, introduced in 1996, affords a free transfer between bus and subway. Prior to this, riders had to pay two full fares. Purchasing either a weekly or monthly pass further reduces the cost per ride. Many employers offer transit checks, which pay even more of the costs.

For years, local politicians would stir the pot on this issue. Now the latest cause is the cost for those handful of people out of several million daily riders who have to pay two fares versus one. An overwhelming majority can afford and already purchase either a weekly or monthly unlimited MetroCard, which makes the “double fare” issue moot.

Residents, taxpayers, and commuters in Golden’s district would be better off if he worried more about how the State Legislature will find the $8 billion Gov. Cuomo promised to bridge the $8.3 billion shortfall in the Metropolitan Transportation Authority-proposed $28 billion, five-year capital plan when they reconvene in January.

It all comes down to the availability of increased funding for additional transportation service to serve residents of two fare zones in the outer boroughs. Operating subsidies are required to increase the level of service and reduce the amount of time one waits for a bus on existing routes. Same for adding more off-peak, late night and weekend service.

Larry Penner

Great Neck, N.Y.

MTA delay

To the editor,

No one should be surprised by the recent news from the Metropolitan Transportation Authority that the Second Avenue Subway won’t be open by next December. The agency reminds me of Capt. Renault from “Casablanca” when he said, “I’m shocked, shocked to find that gambling is going on!”

Riders who have been waiting since construction restarted in 2007 with an original service date of 2013 may not be able to pick up their “winnings” until 2017 or 2018. The project was originally proposed in 1929!

Larry Penner

Great Neck, N.Y.


Crooked pols

To the editor,

First Shelly, then Skelos, then others. So our dear New York State democratic leader, Shelly Silver, has been convicted on all counts of bribery and other misdeeds of directing clients’ money to his own pockets. Shelly lamented in his defense that it is standard practice by all legislators in Albany to do what he did.

A few months ago the State Senate refused to fund an expansion of jails. It was sad to hear that, as the good citizens of New York are eagerly waiting to hear about the next round of indictments and convictions of crooked politicians who infest Albany. Their next stop should be a few years in this fine state’s overcrowded jails.

Robert W. Lobenstein

Marine Park


To the editor,

Hillary Clinton was complaining that the Muslim terrorist groups were using Donald Trump for video recruitment purposes. That lie was quickly exposed and Hillary wound up with egg on her face. Then a video surfaced where Muslim terrorists actually were using footage from Trump’s campaign to recruit new terrorists. I wonder how much Hillary paid them to do this?

Robert W. Lobenstein

Marine Park

Pie in the $ky

To the editor,

Our dear Gov. Cuomo has been on a media blitz unveiling grandiose building schemes — rebuilding the old Pennsylvania Station to an almost former glory, expanding the Javits Center to house the world’s largest ballroom and exhibit center, and other fantastic municipal works endeavors.

One thing that was silently spoken about, off camera, was the way the multi-billion-dollar projects will be paid for. Yes, it will be you and I, and our children and future grandchildren, who will be paying off his follies for decades to come. To build any project on time and within budget is a pipe dream, knowing the ineptness of state and city governments. After these clowns leave office, we all will be saddled for years with the debt load created by their schemes.

Maybe most of these plans should be voted down until Albany straightens up its own corrupt financial mess though, as these politicians are busy picking our pockets, I doubt it.

Robert W. Lobenstein

Marine Park


Roving Randi

To the editor,

It’s bad enough when elected officials are running for other offices and they are away from their official positions. It is just as bad when people, such as American Federation of Teachers president Randi Weingarten will be criss-crossing the country for Democratic presidential candidate Hillary Clinton.

Randi, you have responsibilities that await your urgent attention. In the city more teachers are resigning than ever, they’re throwing the towel in because of the discipline procedures you and other liberal lunkheads have created. Hillary does not need you directly, but teachers throughout the country do, as they struggle with burgeoning class sizes, unruly pupils, overly aggressive administrators, and parents who rule the teacher and principal.

If Randi Weingarten and other officials can’t fulfill their responsibilities, they should take a leave of absence without pay.

Ed Greenspan

Sheepshead Bay

Get a grip

To the editor,

There is always an excuse for outrageous behavior. As the years have gone by, the new one is that the perpetrator was off their medication. In a recent case, several women were slashed by someone in and out of hospitals for mental illness. Why was he always released after each episode, only to cause additional mayhem? Same thing in school. Any teacher can tell you which of their students will go on to commit crimes. No one bothers to listen to them as children, when they are literally crying out by acting out for help. Instead, we either play their friend or just pass them on.

Since the family of the slasher knew what he was capable of, it was their responsibility that this individual be looked after. That is what families are all about. Don’t throw your problems on society and expect them to clean up the mess.

I just love when they say that the recalcitrant was in the process of getting his or life together. It is time for individual initiative and responsibility for one’s actions to rest on the individual and family members. Sure, many of these recalcitrant people and family receive welfare benefits and therefore they feel that everything is coming to them.

Ed Greenspan

Sheesphead Bay

Classroom sham

To the editor,

Politicians have conveniently ignored the problem of discipline in our schools. The lack of discipline is the major cause for teachers leaving the public school system within five years of starting to teach, or retiring as soon as they are eligible to do so.

No matter how good a teacher you are, you can’t teach without effective discipline and everyone knows that. Discipline problems start as early as kindergarten and with nothing done, the child goes from year to year in elementary school and will only cause havoc. If a parent doesn’t sign for special education placement, the child remains in a regular classroom and the disorder continues. As important as class size is, all you need is for one child to be continuously disruptive and little to no learning results. Years ago the 600- school concept for disruptive children was done away with. At least hard core troublemakers were kept out and sent to alternative settings.

When a disruptive child enters intermediate school (grades 6-8) the situation worsens because the child now has the added freedom of roaming the halls during change of periods. The problem is exacerbated now by principals who never taught a day, but are now rating teachers. If these principals taught they would see directly what is going on and change their attitudes about blaming teachers for everything. No matter how much money you pump into the school system, without discipline, the results will be the same, year after year.

The mayor and schools chancellor should be ashamed for weakening disciplinary codes. Lord only knows what else is covered up on a daily basis. Our deteriorating schools have become schools for scandal. Where is the union? It’s so happy to be out of the classroom that it couldn’t care less. Union officials get in overwhelmingly each time they come up for reelection, and the hierarchy within the union collects double pensions.

Ed Greenspan

Sheepshead Bay

Teaching trenches

To the editor,

As Warner Wolfe used to say, “Let’s Go to the Videotape,” when he would want something investigated further. Similarly let’s go to the school records of violent criminals, or better yet, do something with them in their formative years so that they don’t resort to such violence. If you opened the school records, you would see evidence of cutting class, constantly disrupting the class, roaming through the hallways, cursing, screaming, fighting, and causing all sorts of mayhem.

The city’s school system has failed these students and others by their complete refusal to deal with disruptive youth. As a result, the latter become more emboldened with each passing year, and their deviant behavior worsens until an innocent life is lost.

We keep such students in regular classes if the parent refuses to sign for special placement. As a result, chaos results as teachers desperately try to keep order with burgeoning class sizes. When are we going to face this problem head on and not keep sweeping it under the rug? This is not a racist problem. Disruptive pupils come in all races, religions and all backgrounds.

Empty out the regional and district offices and get teachers back in the classroom. We need more psychologists and psychiatrists in the schools. Less suspensions will not solve anything.

So-called staff development is a complete joke and everyone knows it. Let all the militants, ultra liberals and critics of teachers get themselves teacher licenses and get a taste of what it is like in the trenches.

Ed Greenspan

Sheepshead Bay

‘Demagogue’ Donald

To the editor,

It has become apparent to me that Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump would be absolutely perfect in still another remake of the great film, “All the King’s Men.” After all, as demagogue Willie Stark, Broderick Crawford received a well-deserved, best-actor Oscar. Trump could easily pass that, if not do even better in the part. He gives new meaning to the term demagoguery. Hollywood should definitely take notice.

Ed Greenspan

Sheepshead Bay

Pledge allegiance

To the editor,

Of course the Pledge of Allegiance should be recited in schools. As a student of public schools in the 1950s, I remember “the lord is my shepherd” being recited from the Bible in the auditorium until someone finally realized that this was a violation of separation of church and state.

Religion does not belong in our public schools. This means that all symbols representing a religion should not be in the school either. After all, by doing this, we are doing a disservice to those students not of a particular religion, as well as students who are atheists.

Ed Greenspan

Sheepshead Bay

Bernie Panders

To the editor,

Bernie Sanders, what’s so bad about living in a rent-controlled building? You bemoaned that fact about living in such a building in Brooklyn at the last debate.

The rent-controlled buildings on Kings Highway were, and are still, lovely buildings with affordable rents. Ditto for rent stabilization. You’ve been away so long that you probably don’t know that since 1970, if a rent controlled apartment is vacated, it becomes rent stabilized. May the Lord bless rent control and rent stabilization.

At the first sign of any change, you and so many other phony liberals are the first to move out of neighborhoods. Your remark about rent control shows that you’re a landlord’s man. Without rent control or rent stabilization, rents would be over the roof and this would lead to more homeless.

Apparently in Vermont, where you fled to, no such problems of homelessness exist to the degree we’re facing in New York.

Ed Greenspan

Sheepshead Bay

Updated 11:48 am, January 16, 2019
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