Friday, February 1, 2013

Remembering the Ed Koch Years (1978-1989)

We heard the bad news today that former Mayor Ed Koch died at age 88.  Certain much will be said and written about his controversial and colorful 3 terms as mayor.  I must give him credit for being active until his final days.  This journal entry will be devoted to recalling my life during his 12 years in office.

When he first took office in January 1978 I was living in New London, CT since I worked at Pfizer in nearby Groton.  I recall that during his campaign people thought he was gay since he was in his 50s and never married.  I remember reading that a friend of his said he was so involved in politics, that he just had no time or desire to chase women.  In September 1978 I returned to NYC to seek a career in library and information science.  Some of the significant events in my life during the Koch years:

1979 - 1982 - Worked at Schering Plough Corporation

1980 - Met Karen

1983 - Married Karen

1983-1990 - Worked at the New York Public Library at 5th Avenue and 42nd Street

1988 - Lee was born

In the late 1980s Ed Koch spoke in Bryant Park when I worked at NYPL.  He came out in the audience and shook hands with people including me.  I had read two books either by Ed Koch or about him.

Koch, E., & Rauch, W. (1984). Mayor. New York: Simon and Schuster.

Browne, A., Collins, D., & Goodwin, M. (1985). I, Koch: A decidedly unauthorized biography of the mayor of New York City, Edward I. Koch. New York: Dodd, Mead.

Ed Koch will be missed by all New Yorkers as  he certainly made an indelible mark on the Big Apple.  He was active politically until the very end.

A few years ago the Queensboro Bridge aka the 59th Street Bridge was renamed the Koch-Queensboro Bridge.  In honor of Mayor Koch here is the 59th Street Bridge Song by Simon and Garfunkel.

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