Other NJ News

Somerville Neighbor Extends Help to Widow of Fallen Police Officer Matthew Tarentino

25bd3b7bfe88f2201a75_sompixsomdesigncenterstabile.JPG
Design Studio of Somerville owner Thomas Sfisco, left and Cynthia Stabile, senior interior designer. Credits: Rod Hirsch
f502691ec43d1cc8206e_sompixcopmatthewtarentino__1_.JPG
Summit Police Detective Matthew Tarentino Credits: Courtesy Summit Police
f1f726bc3ba47d03dc69_sompixsomdesigncentersfisco.JPG
Design Center of Somerville owner Thomas Sfisco in the showroom of the interior design studio and furniture store. Credits: Rod Hirsch
9017c92b8e33c408f29c_sompixsomdesigncenterexterior.JPG
Design Studio of Somerville Credits: Rod Hirsch
b835bc0e06a584314cc9_sompixsomdesignsfisco2.JPG
Thomas Sfisco's remodeled kitchen was featured in "Better Homes and Gardens" magazine Kitchen and Bath issue of April, 2010. Credits: Rod Hirsch
25bd3b7bfe88f2201a75_sompixsomdesigncenterstabile.JPG

SOMERVILLE, NJ – Like so many others who live in this tight-knit borough, Thomas Sfisco was stunned when he first heard the news about his neighbor Matthew Tarentino, the 29-year-old Summit police officer who was killed May 30 in a three-car motor vehicle accident on Route 78.

Sfisco had seen Tarentino just a few weeks before, walking past his house.

Dedicated to staying in top physical shape, Tarentino was a familiar sight running on the streets throughout the borough;  Sfisco asked whether there was anything wrong.

Sign Up for E-News

“I had just walked outside to the driveway from my kitchen and noticed him across the street walking, which I found bizarre; he never walks; he was always running past like a gazelle.

“I asked him, ‘Matthew are you all right? I offered to drive him home,” Sfisco said.

“I think I just popped my knee let me try and walk it off down to the corner,’ Tarentino responded, according to Sfisco.

Sfisco first met Tarentino when he and his wife, Victoria were walking their newborn first child in a carriage past his house; Tarentino’s parents lived around the corner from Sfisco.

Both Tarentino's and his wife’s family, the Cullens have lived in the borough for three generations. The couple graduated from Immaculata High School, and attended Immaculate Conception RC Church.

Sfisco, who graduated Somervile High School in 1982, lives in the house he grew up in as a child, and is also a third-generation resident of the borough.

Immaculate Conception RC Church on Mountain Avenue hosted a memorial service for Tarentino Sunday, June 4 and a funeral mass June 5, followed by a procession of police officers, families and friends to Resurrection Cemetery in Piscataway for graveside services. The procession drove past the Tarentino’s home.

Thousands of people were in Somerville both days to pay their respects.

Tarentino was promoted to Detective posthumously by the Summit Police Department following the accident.

Sfisco, owner of Design Studio of Somerville, 67 W. Main St., now finds himself in a position where he can help Tarentino’s widow, Victoria and their two young sons, Robbie, 3 and Ray, 2. The couple is expecting their third child in August.

Lee Industries, a North Carolina furniture maker and upholstery manufacturer in operation for 44 years, sponsors a bi-annual community outreach program with its retailers in February and July called “Lee Loves Local.”

Sfisco has been doing business with Lee for years; Lee’s furniture – sofas, love seats, ottomans and benches, dining room and bedroom sets - are displayed throughout the Design Center showroom; catalogs full of upholstery samples sit on sofa cushions, glass shelves and flat surfaces, with a rack of samples in the basement office and workshop.

Lee deducts five percent from each invoice for new orders submitted by its retailers during the month of July and returns that money to the retailer in the form of a donation for a designated charity or cause. Sfisco discussed the program with Cynthia Stabile, his longtime senior interior designer; both knew immediately what they would do.

Stabile, friends with the Cullen family, reached out to tell them about the program before moving forward.

Somerville Design Studio will match that five percent donated by Lee and will donate 10 percent of all Lee sales in the store during the month of July to the online fund established for Tarentino’s young family by the Summit PAL in the days following Tarentino’s death.

As of 4 p.m. Monday, donations totaled $587,393. The site can be accessed online at youcaring.com/victoriatarentino-835682.

A Message of Thanks was posted to the website on June 12 by Vickie Tarentino’s siblings. It reads:

"We, the siblings of Detective Matthew and Vickie Tarentino, can never thank the Summit PAL enough for the tremendous gesture of starting this fund in Matt's memory for our sweet sister and their young children.

During these most devastating days, the kind words, memories, prayers, and most certainly the generous donations are humbling and comforting, and will make their navigating the road ahead just a little easier. We are so deeply appreciative.

On behalf of our sister, we extend her most sincere awe and gratitude for everything that has been done to honor Matt and comfort her family during this time."

The Design Studio of Somerville is open Monday-Thursday, 10 a.m.-5:30 p.m.; Friday, 10 a.m.-8 p.m.; Saturday, 11 a.m.-5 p.m. and Sunday, noon-4 p.m.

Call 908-685-1921 for further information.

TAP Into Another Town's News:

You May Also Be Interested In

Sign Up for E-News

Westfield

Union County Democratic Committee Elects New Chair

February 22, 2018

CLARK, NJ – The vote for the Union County Democratic Committee (UCDC) chairmanship came to a conclusion Wednesday night when 748 committee members from the county’s 21 municipalities descended on the Gran Centurions in Clark to vote for their new party leader.

State Senator Nick Scutari won with a 412-341 victory over Fanwood Mayor Colleen Mahr in a battle that had become ...

Mayor Brindle’s Update

February 15, 2018

The following are highlights from the update that Mayor Shelley Brindle gave at Tuesday night’s town council meeting.

I first want to congratulate Nick Calello and David Went for their promotions to patrol officers in the Westfield Police Department. I’d also like to welcome and congratulate new Patrol Officer Fortunato Riga, who joins the police department this week upon his ...

Upcoming Events

Carousel_image_fadfd1c21bc636c673db_schmidt_john_01_pp

Thu, February 22, 8:30 AM

Hilton Garden Inn, Hamilton , Hamilton

Defending Your Independent Contractor & Wage & ...

Business & Finance Education Law & Justice

Carousel_image_8e821e02ba44390d688c_olympics_oh_feb_2018

Thu, February 22, 10:00 AM

Camp Riverbend, Warren

Camp Riverbend Wacky Winter Olympics Open House

Other

Carousel_image_97368eb92d0feb35caf6_img_0082

Thu, February 22, 5:00 PM

Barnes & Noble, Clark

Purim Story & Crafts Hour at Barnes & Noble

Education

Westfield Police Blotter: Man Steals 60 Pairs of Pants from Downtown Store & More

February 21, 2018

February 14, 2018 10:53 p.m.

Officers Gill and Weiss arrested Luis Murillo, age 30, of Rahway, NJ, for two outstanding warrants out of Westfield Municipal Court ($500) and Woodbridge Municipal Court ($500) pursuant to a motor vehicle stop in Scotch Plans Township. Subject was transported to headquarters, processed and released after posting requisite bail.

 

February 15, 2018 5:24 ...

Hamantash Bake at the Torah Center

February 21, 2018

The Union County Torah Center - Chabad will be hosting a Hamantash Bake at its center, 111 Laurel Place, Westfield NJ on Sunday, Feb. 25 at 11:30 a.m.

Participants will learn the techniques and skills for making hamantashen. They will be putting on aprons, preparing the dough, choosing from a variety of fillings and taking home their very own created delicious ...

‘Month of Hope’ at Wilson School

Inspired by the HOPE Week Initiative introduced in 2009 by the New York Yankees, Mr. Joseph Malanga, principal of Wilson School and a fan of the American League professional ballclub, declared January the “Month of Hope” at Wilson.

Malanga called on the school’s faculty Acts of Kindness Committee to choose the charitable organizations to be recipients of the weekly donation ...

AtlantiCast

AtlantiCast: Episode 12

On this week’s episode of AtlantiCast, decade of excellence makes headlines, as Atlantic Health’s place on Fortune Magazine’s 100 Best Companies to Work For List leads off the newest episode of AtlantiCast. Also on this week’s show, check out the newest “hybrid” operating room at Morristown Medical Center and find out how Atlantic Health is helping local ...

Would the Stock Market Affect Your Home Purchase?

"Fasten your seatbelts; it's going to be a bumpy night." ("All About Eve.") While most people misquote this as "It's going to be a bumpy ride," the actual quote works better for the movie. Bette Davis delivers this with the classic style that made her one of the most loved actresses of her generation.

Well for the stock market it’s been a wild bumpy ...

Good News in NJ for Veterans

Beginning in the 2017 tax year, New Jersey will give an additional $3,000 exemption for military veterans. You are eligible to claim this exemption NJ state income tax return if you are a military veteran who was honorably discharged or released under honorable circumstances from active duty in the Armed Forces of the United States on or before the last day of the tax year.

 

The ...

Sinai or Sanctuary?

 

 

And in the beginning, G‑d was homeless, and so G‑d asked His people to set Him up with some digs. Where does it say that? Well, nowhere, actually. But it does say that G‑d instructed Moses to tell the people, “They shall make for Me a Sanctuary, that I may dwell among them.”

Now the question is, was G‑d really homeless? ...

How to Talk with Kids About the Florida Shooting

February 13, 2018

The tragedy of the Florida school shooting is devastating, leaving 17 killed and 15 injured. Our children can easily identify with what occurred yesterday. It will be the topic of conversation today in schools everywhere. School administrators are doing all they can to provide support and guidance. The shootings affect children, teachers, and school personnel. The school shooting ...

Love Craft Beer But Hate the Tour? State Assembly Moves to Make it Easier for You to Belly Up to the Bar

Good news is a brew for New Jersey craft beer advocates. In February 2018, the New Jersey Assembly’s Agriculture and Natural Resources Committee paved the way for the introduction of Bill A2196, which would remove a current licensing rule requiring breweries and distilleries to provide a tour of their facilities before serving alcoholic beverages to consumers. Currently, breweries holding a ...

'What Stays' exposes family secrets and lies

‘What Stays’ exposes family secrets, resentment and lies

By Liz Keill

SUMMIT, NJ – In an original play by Laura Ekstrand and Jason Szamreta, the Dreamcatcher Repertory Theatre has provided an enlightening, funny and heart-felt view of family foibles.

Ekstrand has said that the germ of the play came from conversations with the ensemble members of the troupe, based on ...

Is FAANG Long in the Tooth?

Investors love to rally around a stock story. Today it’s all about the FAANG stocks. Facebook (FB), Amazon (AMZN), Apple (AAPL), Netflix (NFLX) and Google (GOOG) are a major reason why the S&P 500 rallied so much in 2017. Mr. Market is convinced the FAANGs are impervious to a sell-off. “Its different this time” is ringing loud and clear, but will the outcome really be that ...

Imagine a Chatham Toboggan Ride from the Top of Fairmount Avenue to Main Street

Did you know….
there was a time when Chatham kids could ice skate from downtown Chatham all the way to Florham Park? And that a toboggan ride could last from the top of Fairmount Avenue down to Main Street and beyond?

Those were the days!

This was back in the early to mid-1900s. The Passaic River meandered through grassy meadows and woods on the north side of Chatham. The marshy ...

Obituaries

Kathleen Marie Christian (nee Helmstetter), age 73 of Surf City, NJ, passed away peacefully at home ...
Read more

Cops Called for Two People Shouting Racial Slurs During ‘Black Panther’ in Sparta

February 21, 2018

SPARTA, NJ – Sparta police were called to the New Vision Sparta Theater on Sunday night after a drunken woman and her boyfriend interrupted a screening of the movie “Black Panther” by shouting racial slurs, according to a witness and police.

Former New Jersey Assembly candidate Michael Grace was in the theater when two people started yelling racial slurs including ...