Letters February 5, 2009

Posted on 06 February 2009

Supports Her Brother


To Whom It May Concern:

I am writing this letter in support of Fred Marienfeld. As one of his four sisters I would like to tell the community a little bit about him; some things that people may not know.

Our family moved to Sag Harbor when Fred was 12 and I was 7 from about an hour west of here. We settled in Sag Harbor and began going to school there. What I remember most about those times growing up was Fred’s intense love for sports- any sports! He not only played them in school, he watched them on TV, played them in the yard and would talk to anyone who would listen about stats, teams, star players and playoffs. Since I only saw my Dad on the weekends, it was Fred who tossed the ball around with his three younger sisters and encouraged us to become involved in sports in school, which we all did.

Fast forward to Fred’s high school graduation from Pierson in 1979. Bittersweet times for me; Fred joined the US Marine Corps and left for Parris Island shortly after summer began. Although he is my older brother; he was very often a father figure in our home, helping out my Mom in so many ways. We felt lost without him and looked forward to the times he would be home on leave.

Upon completion of his four years service in the USMC, Fred attended SUNY Cortland; graduated and came back to Sag Harbor. He started his student teaching, substituting, coaching and eventually going to work at Greenport School as their Phys Ed teacher and Head Football Coach.

Fred’s heart was always in Sag Harbor though, and when the opportunity to teach at Pierson arose, Fred jumped at it. By this time, he was married and had three young kids. Fred’s devotion to his family is unquestionable. He is one of the most loving dads I have ever seen. He was often jumping in the truck with the kids and heading off to scout another team for an upcoming game for a team he was coaching. He would often pick up my son and bring him along too.

Fred has coached all ages of kids in many different sports, donating his time over and over to help kids learn to play sports. When he became head coach of the Pierson Whalers Varsity Boys Basketball team a few years ago, he was so proud and his family was proud of him. Although this position takes up a lot of time, he is still heavily involved in his own kid’s sports, coaching their teams and attending every game he possibly can.

Anyone who knows Fred knows his commitment to his family, his team, his school and his town. He is intensely passionate about all of these things. His dedication to his team is evident. He is a good man, a good father and a good coach. I ask the powers that be in the administration at Pierson to reconsider their decision to terminate Fred from his coaching position; this is an incredible injustice to Fred, his family and his team and Sag Harbor.


Jacqueline Parker McMahon



Lives to Coach


Dear Bryan,

I write today in response to last week’s firing of Fred Marienfeld as coach of the boy’s varsity basketball team. Specifics aside, I feel compelled to speak my mind in regards to Fred as I know him.

We have a history that goes back to birth. That fact notwithstanding, there is a wealth of reasons why this situation to me seems like an overreaction. Fred lives to coach; more accurately said, he lives to mold and mentor young people, with the goal of making better people for the good of all parties involved. Whether it be sports-related or otherwise, his dedication to the task at hand—like my own—is absolute. A no-nonsense approach and hands-on attitude with his charges has always yielded positive results.

While teaching and coaching in Greenport, Fred’s persona really evolved. He was able to turn a mediocre football program into one that could be respected and admired. Sometimes his passion and all encompassing will can be much. But, I ask, is this a reason to terminate a man’s quest for the betterment of a group of young men? Fred’s character as a dedicated family man and community minded person is without question honorable. It goes without saying that his leadership qualities are valuable in so many ways, and I would urge the board to reconsider its position in this matter.


Bruce Marienfeld

Sag Harbor


Teacher and Mentor


Dear Editor,

We have recently read several articles portraying Coach Marienfeld in a very negative light. Coach Marienfeld has coached, taught and mentored all three of my children at one time or another and they’ve had nothing but positive things to say about him as a coach, teacher and person. My husband has coached with him and they were able to coach together and have fun with the kids at the same time.  Many times as we were discussing the day’s events around the dinner table, my children would tell stories about how he gets right in to the thick of things with the kids, but also treats them as equals on the playing field.

 We feel he is a person that they could go to if they needed help in our absence, we are confident that he would do whatever he could to ensure their well being in any situation.  He has so profoundly influenced two of our children that one of their goals in life is to become P.E. teachers just like Coach Fred. We feel we would be remiss if we didn’t let you know that we think that Coach Marienfeld’s positive influence has done a great deal to boost our children’s self esteem and they look forward to seeing him every day in school.


Kara and John Romeo

Sag Harbor


Talented and Dedicated


Dear Bryan,

The recent firing of Coach Fred Marienfeld must be a mistake. If you have ever had the pleasure of knowing Fred or talking with Fred, you will strongly agree. Fred Marienfeld is a talented coach, dedicated to his players. He is a man of great integrity and character. His is very passionate about his family, his town and his team. Jeff Nichols stated he was let go because “The district has expectations for its coaches, and Mr. Marienfeld did not meet those expectations.” A winning record with trips to the playoffs since he was hired is not what he was expecting? The administration in the Sag Harbor School District truly needs to reconsider their decision. Bring Coach Marienfeld back where he belongs… Pacing the sidelines of the varsity bench and leading the team in more ways than one.

Kelly McMahon

Pierson Class of 1986


Wonderful Community


Dear Bryan,

On Thursday January 15th I had the misfortune of slipping on the ice in the driveway. The result of this fall was a severe break, from shoulder to elbow, and a broken wrist. My husband called 911 at 7:20 a.m. and within seconds members of our volunteer ambulance corps were in my driveway assisting me. They worked so carefully and diligently and showed such concern for my well-being.

Just one more reason I am grateful and proud to be a part of this wonderful community. Thank you so much for all of your hard work.

With Warmest Regards:

Cheryl Labrozzi McMahon

Sag Harbor


Help From Friends


Dear Bryan,

Projects that encompass the entire village are only possible when friends and volunteers from several organizations step up to help. We are fortunate to live in a place where “neighbors helping neighbors” is a ay of life. With that thought in mind, we’d like to thank the following for assisting the LVIS in this year’s Holiday House Tour:

All the hosts and hostesses who welcomed visitors to each home; Bethany and the Sag Harbor teachers; The Friends of the Library; the Food Pantry volunteers; and the LVIS members, their daughters, granddaughters, husbands, friends and other family members.

We especially wish to thank all the generous, hospitable homeowners, Tracy at the Bay Street Theatre, Joan and Dorothy at the Sag Harbor Historical Society, Nada, Gwen and all the ladies at the Wharf Shop, Erin at Hampton Staging, and of course, Annette at the Express for her colorful coverage.

Most sincerely,

Chris Tice, Sr. and Diane Lewis

Co-chairs of the LVIS House Tour

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