Tag Archives: Westport VFW

GreenDay Clean-Up Day

In honor of GreenDay, a number of organizations, groups and random folks pitched in to clean up Westport today.

Sherwood Mill Pond Preserve — the former Allen’s Clam House on Hillspoint Road — drew Staples High School grads and students, Coleytown Middle School students, volunteer residents and members of the Sherwood Mill Pond Advisory Committee.

Sherwood Mill Pond clean-up - Carol Swan

(Photo/Carol Swan)

Steve Gustafson is in the foreground, in the photo above. Other volunteers are behind. And yes, the guy on the bench was just relaxing, as others worked all around him.

Meanwhile downtown, the Y’s Men picked up a year’s worth of trash from the Baldwin parking lot:

Y's Men - Baldwin Parking Lot

Among the other activities: Westport VFW and Auxiliary members cleaned up Riverside Avenue, from Treadwell all the way to the Sunoco station.


Remembering Junior Bieling

Another piece of old Staples, old Saugatuck, and old Westport is gone.

Junior Bieling died yesterday at Bridgeport Hospital. He was 80, and had been ill for several years.

Junior Bieling

A celebrated athlete at Staples, Junior — no one, then or now, ever called him “John” — returned to Westport after earning a Silver Star in the Korean War. He played football with the legendary local Advertisers team, and semi-pro softball for the Raybestos Cardinals. He is a member of the Connecticut Fast Pitch Hall of Fame.

Long-ago Westporters knew him as the owner and operator of the Jockey Club restaurant/bar in Saugatuck. He served as a bartender at the VFW, then opened Jr.’s Hot Dog Stand on Riverside Avenue — not far from the original Staples, where he had starred. He sold the restaurant in 2004.

Junior was also known as an avid Staples sports fan. For decades he was a fixture at football and basketball games. Though confined to a wheelchair in recent years, he seldom missed a game.

Junior’s wife — well-known Bedford teacher Carol Digisi Bieling — died this past November.

Friends are invited to the Harding Funeral Home (210 Post Road East) on Monday (April 2, 4-8 p.m.). A funeral will be held Tuesday at Assumption Church (10 a.m.). Interment with full military honors will follow.

To leave an online condolence note, click here. Contributions in Junior’s name may be sent to the Staples High School Athletic Department, c/0 Marty Lisevick, 70 North Avenue, Westport CT 06880.