On November 30, the Village of Islandia held a Good Neighbor Gala on the grounds of Village Hall to recognize three of its residents—Patricia Ann Kellner, Maria Depaula-Walsh and Robert Sutton—for their positive impact on the community.
Ms. Kellner is President of the DNA Genealogy Group of Long Island and has found lost family members using genealogy and DNA, reunited adoptees to their families and developed successful genetic genealogy strategies. She manages numerous DNA tests, runs Facebook DNA genealogy groups, has hosted family reunions and created an extensive family tree. She is a member of the Genealogical Speakers Guild and has a B.A. in Speech Communications.
Ms. Depaula-Walsh witnessed a tragic accident in September where a boy riding his bike was struck by a car near Gina’s Enchanted Flower Shoppe. She didn’t know the boy, but she felt compelled to learn more about the boy’s condition. She entered the flower shop to see if Gina Lekstutis, Owner, Gina’s Enchanted Flower Shoppe, had any more information on the boy. Ms. Lekstutis gave Ms. Depaula-Walsh a red rose and asked that they continue praying for the boy. Ms. Depaula-Walsh carried the rose with her as she shared the story with everyone she met, including Mayor Allan M. Dorman, and asked them to keep the boy in their prayers.
Mr. Sutton has been a Volunteer Firefighter for the Central Islip Fire Department since 1992. He runs the department’s fire prevention program and has been recognized for developing one of the best programs in the state. He hosts fire safety presentations and poster contests at local schools. He has served as President of the Suffolk County Fire Safety Educators from 2006 to 2009 and from 2011 to 2017, bringing his passion for education to all those in the organization.
At the ceremony, Mayor Allan M. Dorman thanked the honorees for their service to the community and the attendees for supporting their neighbors. He also said that there will be more Good Neighbor Gala events in the future as the village continues to recognize its citizens.
In its December 20-27 issue, the Smithtown Messenger reported on the Village of Islandia’s Good Neighbor Gala on November 30. Read Article