Roundup: Lyman Update, Superman & Marilyn Monroe …

With reports of Russian troops advancing in the Donbas region, Westporters have been worried about residents in our sister city: Lyman, Ukraine.

The front line is 20 kilometers away.

Brian Mayer — a Westport native, and co-founder of Ukraine Aid International — is texting with Alexander Victoravich Zuravlov. He reports that the town is hunkered down, hoping for the best and in good spirits.

Meanwhile, Brian and his colleagues have used some of the $252,000 donated by Westporters and friends to purchase all kinds of building supplies: drywall, concrete, glass, plywood, pipes and more.

It’s all in a warehouse, ready to be delivered to Lyman. Officials have identified 3 large apartment buildings where local contractors (already hired) can make repairs.

“That’s 1,00o people who will be directly impacted by Westport’s generosity,” Brian says.

One more bit of sister city news: the Lyman town flag has arrived, and been delivered to town officials.

Marshall Mayer — Brian’s brother, a Staples High School graduate and co-founder of UAI — made the presentation Friday at Compo Beach. 1st Selectwoman Jen Tooker, 2nd Selectwoman Andrea Moore, Police Chief Foti Koskinas, and UAI director of development Katya Wauchope — a member of the working group that helped raise funds earlier this winter — joined in the ceremony. Click below to see:


Westporter Bonnie Siegler’s new book will be published Tuesday.

“The American Way: A True Story of Nazi Escape, Superman and Marilyn Monroe” is the story of 2 men who never met. One was her grandfather.

The other who signed for her family to come to the US in 1938. His name was Harry Donenfeld. He founded DC Comics — Superman, and all that.

His son Irwin worked for DC too. But he left the company, moved to Westport, and with his wife Carole had children who went to Staples High School.

Irwin owned the marina next to the Black Duck. He served on the RTM for 2 decades.

The book is also a love story: her grandparents’.

Click here for more details, and links to order.


Attention, young filmmakers in the area (or anywhere, really): MoCA Westport wants your submission.

Short films (no more than 5 minutes long) will be considered for a Teen Film Showcase at the museum on March 10. The deadline is March 1.

The event is created, and run, by teenagers.

PS: The event is open to the public; tickets are $5 in advance, $10 at the door. Snacks/light bites will be served.

Click here for submissions. Click here for tickets. Follow @teensatmocawestport on Instagram. to stay in the loop!


Since it was built, the cell tower behind the bank by Walgreens has blended into the landscape. We hardly notice it anymore.

But Yulee Aaronson does. And he’s worried.

Yulee thinks it’s leaning. He sent this photo as proof:

(Photo/Yulee Aaronson)

It didn’t look much like Pisa to me. But readers: What do you think? Should we be concerned? Click “Comment” below.


Westport resident Joan Litsky Rosenblatt Wetzler died Friday in Bridgeport. She was 87.

A competitive swimmer at Crosby High School in her native Waterbury, she earned a BS in mathematics from Clark University, and a master’s in social work from the University of Connecticut.

Joan had a career as a social worker at JCCs in Norfolk, Savannah, Troy, New York and Englewood, New Jersey.

Two years after her husband Herbert Rosenblatt died of a heart attack at 38 in 1971, Joan married Fred Wetzler and moved to Westport. She was a social worker at Family & Children’s Aid in Norwalk, then in the inpatient psychiatry department at Norwalk Hospital. and later in private practiceyty.

Joan is survived by her sisters Helen Goldberg of Bethany and Paulette Feinberg of Virginia; daughters Amy (Charles) Rosoff, Jodi (Scott) Galin and Lisa (Marc) Krigsman; grandchildren Heather and Ben Rosoff, Hannah Galin (Michael Katz) and Rebecca Galin (Sam Epstein), and Jamie and Em-J Krigsman, and great grandchild Sophia Katz. She was predeceased by her husband Fred Wetzler in 2010.

Funeral services were held today (Sunday, February 12 at Temple Israel. Shiva will follow this afternoon at the home of Amy and Charles Rosoff in Westport until 6 p.m., and February 13 and 14, from 4 to 8 p.m.

Click here to leave online condolences. Memorial contributions may be made to Temple Israel, 14 Coleytown Road, Westport, CT.

Joan Wetzler


Winslow Park — without dogs or people — is the subject of today’s misty “Westport … Naturally” feature.

(Photo/MaryLou Roels)


And finally … once upon a time, Americans celebrated Abraham Lincoln’s birthday (February 12). Ten days later, it was George Washington’s turn.

In 1971, both were subsumed into Presidents Day. So while it’s nice we now have a federal holiday to honor greats like Franklin D. Roosevelt, Theodore Roosevelt and Thomas Jefferson, we also include schlemiels like Warren Harding, James Buchanan, and “others.”

Honest Abe was born 214 years ago today, in — yes, it’s true — a log cabin. A deep — well, first page — dive into Google brings up this interesting list of favorite songs.

The first is a no-brainer. It was the unofficial anthem of the Civil War.

Another was a famous Scottish love ballad:

The third may be a surprise.

“Dixie” was popular before the Civil War. When a band serenaded him at the White House after the end of the war, he asked for it.

“I have always thought ‘Dixie’ one of the best tunes I have ever heard,” he said.

‘That tune is now federal property, and it is good to show the rebels that, with us in power, they will be free to hear it again.”


9 responses to “Roundup: Lyman Update, Superman & Marilyn Monroe …

  1. Yeah; surprised we’re even allowed to sing “Dixie” any more…soon we won’t be.

  2. Stephanie Frankel

    Who sings Dixie these days? Lol.

  3. We, here in the womb of woke NE, have no cause to sing the song and even eschew it, Ms. Frankel. However, them way down south in the land of cotton , sing it at rallies and sporting events with abandon…so far.

  4. Eric William Buchroeder SHS ‘70 (no tuition grant for me)

    In the interest of fairness, I would support eliminating the militarist Grant’s name from the Staples Tuition Grants initiative. Racist white men should not have their name on a scholarship that is trying to accomplish equity for all.

  5. Stephanie Frankel

    Maybe the Nazi Confederate flag wavers still sing it? Who knows. Catchy tune.
    Have you heard about the Nazi homeschoolers in Ohio? It’s apparently not against the law! Will being trans be against the law though?
    Ah, goood old Dixie!

    • Eric William Buchroeder SHS ‘70 BA, MA, MIW (miserable in Westport)

      I’m with you. I feel your pain. They’re out to get us. I’ve got your back. How can I as a racist white man from Westport further atone for my original sins? Here’s another POG (point of grievance – Happy Festivus) Dixie Cups!!!! They really PISS ME OFF!!!! Not only are they named after a racist rebellion and a racist song. Those dirty paper cups end up polluting the environment.

      • Stephanie Frankel

        I am now at my limit for commenting.
        Eric, I assume the public condemnation of the use of the “n“ word really pisses you off. It was so “woke“ to stop usinng it. I also assume you hate that the band previously known as the Dixie Chicks got rid of the term Dixie all on their own as they learned from other humans and fans that it was offensive to them. I also assume that you have spoken with and read about black people and their feelings about hearing the song “Dixie Land“.
        I am not sure why you are so worked up and angry about people coming to terms with racism and hatred.
        Oh, and why would the wrod grant , not Ulysses S Grant ( who fought to free the slaves) have to be taken off the tuition grant? That makes no sense whatsoever. Are you conflating the song about slavery with the word grant?

        • Eric William Buchroeder SHS ‘70

          You LOVE to do the straw man thing don’t you. I admire your fire and passion. I support each and every one of your root causes. I just have to wonder what CONCRETE ACTION you have taken to actually improve the situation for the oppressed. You (and unfortunately the parties now controlling “dialogue” in Westport) are overplaying your hand. You are like the air raid siren that is locked in the “full screech” position three years after the Nazi Luftwaffe was defeated (by mostly white men) in the Battle of Britain. I really would like to sit down, have dinner, whatever, with you (because I suspect that when you’re dealing face/face you’re pretty rational). I live in Ohio (another place you’ve taken uncalled for pot shots at) I love Westport (or at least the Westport I knew before it went off the rails) I’ll admit to being a biased person. But it’s mostly for action. My cell phone is 513-240-0719. Text me and we can set up a time to talk if you wish. If not, pax vobiscum.

          • Eric William Buchroeder SHS ‘70, Curator, Minar Marhsenag Museum of Virtue Signalling

            Stephanie, after having spoken with you I am convinced you are the real deal. I would never have met you if it wasn’t for 06880 and TEAM Westport. In retrospect, however, I would have preferred to have left TEAM Westport out of the equation. I prefer my walls made of tile and hung in the library.

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