Joseph P Lapinski

Profile Updated: November 13, 2018
Residing In: Warsaw Poland
Spouse/Partner: Single, but 3 (in consecutive order, thank you)-read below for more
Occupation: Engineer/Artist
Children: Three grown and accomplished Adults. They are wonderful and I love them dearly:

Andrea, 45, More…born February 9, 1969 in Baltimore, MD. Lives in San Diego, CA - Civilian, Head of Social Work/Customer Service for all U.S. Navy hospitals worldwide. Single.

Alexander 31, born September 2, 1982, in NYC, Manhattan. Lives in San Franscisco, CA. A Social Worker in the Criminal Justice System - Penitentiaries.

Alex is Getting Married Aug 16, 2014 in SF.

John, 27, born October 5, 1986 in Summit, NJ. Lives in NYC, Manhattan. Real Estate Owner-Apartment Building in Manhattan. Singularly carousing.
Life Story Comments:

FIRST, I WANT TO PERSONALLY AND HEARTFULLY THANK ALL THE BOYS AND GIRLS WHO WENT TO VIETNAM FOR ALL OF US. THEY DIED, WERE WOUNDED SUFFERED US WHEN THEY CAME BACK. GODSPEED. PLEASE VIEW THE "IN MEMORY" SERVICEMEN.

I worked 47 years in construction. My father owned a sheetmetal fabricating business, Levi Case Co. on Warren St. in Schenectady, right off North Jay St. I started working there in the summer of (no, not '42 - remember that movie, Jennifer O'Neill? Every guy I knew was in love with her, or was that just me? in any event)... the summer of my 16th birthday, 1964, egads.

Married at 19 to Patricia Kelly in 1968, who I met in Baltimore, MD while attending college. Short marriage, 2-1/2 years. But a wonderful daughter came out of the marriage, Pat is a nice lady, we helped each other out emotionally, over the last 30 years. She's doing well. Became a PHD and works in AIDS research.

We spent those Vietnam War years together. She was at the famous march in Washington, D.C., for Womens' Liberation, at the Lincoln Memorial, in '69 or '70, can't recall. They really burned their bras, no kidding, remember? I sat for all the babies, 2-3 anyway, as my part, at the Friends School in Baltimore. I'm proud of her and of myself for being a part of that. I take a lot of pride in seeing my children dating all colors and races and religions without their thinking twice.

Some good things have happened in our country over the last 45 years. I think all and all we all did a pretty good job. Our generation has had its failures-too many wars, it seems like it will never stop.

I see young people wearing the peace sign t-shirts from the '70's again. And they're wearing the 'fro's, too. That I am happy about, good memories. Pat went to live with Andrea in Brooklyn in 1973, I was in Albany. I went down to NY weekends to see Andrea and that's how I started living in NY. I moved there permanently in 1977.

And the freedom fighting in the Middle East and the freedom gained in Eastern Europe, my ancestral home, Poland. All good and I believe we all had a part in those other victories for around the world (for good and for bad, I'm afraid) .

Moved to NYC in 1977, as I said, to work in the Big Apple and ended up in Saudia Arabia for a while. Great experiences. After that, when work was slow in NYC, I took other jobs overseas; Rome, London, MidEast countries, they don't hate us, Puerto Rico, Brazil and five states. I worked on projects totalling $20 bn over my career, of which I personally managed about $8 bn. Sorry for the pumping up, but I need it. After all, we, all of us, are our Family. When you get old enough, my Father used to say, even your enemies become your friends...because you're the only one's that remember. I guess I'm getting old enough. Not sure we all have any enemies from Linton.

I'm a Electrical Eng'r., plus with my sheetmetal background, I ended up becoming a Sr. Project Manager, a VP, ran Levi Case-failed at it, a low, managed design and construction of mechanical, electrical, plumbing and IT systems. My first big project was EPCOT Center at Disney World. I did some very big projects after that, but taking a 100 acre swamp and making it into that was something I've obviously never forgotten; Presbyterian Hospital in Manhattan; the International Arrivals Terminal at JFK airport in NYC; Papermills in Brazil; Ocean Desalination plants in Abu Dhabi, for fresh water supply, in 1978. Why we haven't built these plants in the USA, particularly in the Southwest, I'll never know, except for the water management moguls in the West who have a stranglehold on the Colorado River and others.

I am lucky that my last project was the Freedom Tower at the 911 site. I lost a good friend in the event, so I was happy to have ended up there. The Tower is 105 stories, 1776 ft. It is an incredible view up there walking those metal decks after the steel has just gone-up. Crazy, but I always loved that.

It's funny, isn't it how you can tell a whole career in two paragraphs, after all the struggle and worry and success and failure. I've had a lot of both. Sums the career up.

I married again in 1979, to Barbara Benton, from Sheepshead Bay, Brooklyn. We met in Brooklyn when I lived there in the late '70's in a famous Italian area-Joe Gallo's old haunt, Carroll Gardens, Court Street, if you know Brooklyn. Best semolina hot from the oven.

My apartment was a pretty, a 1-bedroom across the street from the Cammareri Bakery of Moonstruck fame. I still love that movie. Her Mother (Olympia Dukakis) asks in the last scene "You love him (Nicolas Cage), Loretta?" Loretta (Cher, I didn't have to tell you) says: "Yeah, Ma, I love him like crazy." Her Mother says "Oh, that's too bad, Loretta". I could watch that movie a hundred times; getting pretty close to that now. It may be because it reminds me of North Jay St. in Schenectady.

Barbara and I had two sons, Alex and John. She and I were together 23 years. The funniest woman I ever knew. She passed away in 2006 (we had divorced in 2001). My sons were 23 and 19 at the time. They got to be with their Mom for a good while before she died and that was a blessing. Such a tragedy. A good person.

I married one more time, God bless me, to a very warmhearted woman, Stella, who was born in Naples and came here with her family when about 9 years old. Great families the Italian-Americans and great food. As I think of it, every one of my wives were great cooks, so it wasn't like starving.

I've been single since 2007. Well... Hope springs eternal, or is it that an old fool never gets any less foolish? What the heck, you take the good with the sad, but one thing I can say is I did almost everything I've ever wanted to do and looks like I ain't stopping yet. Now that I've retired, there's more time...I think.

I'm moving to Marfa, TX. Marfa, TX, you ask? It is located in way West Texas, about 3-1/2 hours from El Paso, TX and 27 miles to the nearest next town. Of course, in Texas, that's about a 15 minute drive.

I went looking for a place to settle in June '11. I figured 47 yrs in construction was enough and one too many bosses. I remember the old joke: "You can always tell a Boss, but you can't him/her much" (I should know, I was exactly the same way, but worse, probably).

I started drawing, over the years, and have been enjoying that for about 20 years. Took classes for a long time and can hold my own, sold a few (very few) pieces (pastels). Art is one of the attractions in Marfa. Beautiful stark landscapes. The sunsets are breathtaking. I got up every morning for work about 4 AM so I'm not seeing too many sunrises these days. It has it's own PBS radio station and a bunch of cool galleries...and $2 beers, Yoowee.

I want someplace hot and dry. I don't know about you, but I never liked the cold. I did some research of places with hot weather and checked out the financials of various smaller towns (no taxes on capital gains or SSA benefits and income, if, God help me, I have to work). Was on way to Alpine, TX and was too tired to drive another minute. I bunked down (Howdy) in a local Bed & Breakfast and liked the town so much and felt really comfortable there, stayed a few more days and decided this was the place.

The population is about 1900. There are no traffic lights in Marfa. They give directions by referencing the one 4-way stop. A few New York artists found the place in the '80s (shot the movie "Giant" there with James Dean and Elizabeth Taylor and Rock Hudson, in 1966. How 'bout that). All my friends here in NJ think I've lost my mind. I tell them, so what else is new.

Well, that's about it for now. I wish I could make it to the Party, but just moving, won't be able to get up to Schenectady in October. I will miss you all greatly. By the way, my Mom and Dad both passed away over the last 10 years.

I would like to hear from any and all of you, so write or call. Take the photos.

Memories of School - story, event or thoughts:

Suzanne Tubbs, '67, my first true love, steady for 3 years, still think of her. But you know how it is with the firsts, you never forget.

My first kiss. I say my first kiss, because she actually had to kiss me (remember Jackie? I do). I was clueless (years later talking with my Mother I was saying how completely unknowledgeable I was about sex. She says, "Oh, we didn't give you the book?").

Lest I not digress. Back to The Kiss...

I didn't know what was happening. Walking home after a date in the summer before 9th grade (Oneida), with my first real girlfriend, she suddenly turns and kisses me, on The LIPS, then she just turns around, waving a good night over her back, walking home, leaving me stunned, breathless, frozen in place for what seemed like a century, but happy, very, very happy. I don't really know how I got home, but there were a lot of stars out that night. I don't remember any of them being in the sky.

OK, well reminiscing of other firsts, I have a hilarious story (clean) about one other first. Now it's getting good, huh?

Our family went to Atlantic City for summer vacation (oh, you are reading).

My brother, John (Linton '63) and I always shared a room adjoining our parents. My brother spent this particular summer in Germany, on a foreign exchange, in Cologne. My brother was very shy and so there was no venturing for Joey.

That is until that summer (Caution - this next part is for all audiences who still remember, or want to...).

John, being not there, my parents' decided, in all their Confucius-like wisdom, they wouldn't need to rent a double room. You got it. They chose to get me a room by myself, NOT ADJOINING THEIRS. How sweet it is.

Well, needless to say, yours truly dreamed of ... and yes, I, we did. That's not the funny part. The funny part is the next morning.

A KNOCK on my door. My Parents.

We woke up like a shot. I don't know what she's thinking. I'm thinking FEAR. I'm dead, a tortuous one. I'm NOT opening that door. I'm ready to prop all the furniture against it and jump out the window. She runs in the bathroom (as if that was going to save her).

Another knock.

My Father saying "Joey, time for Church". I'm thinking the last thing on my mind (if I had a mind at that point), was church. But I am saying a hundred rosaries as fast as I can (does that count?).

I start moaning, like I'm sick. Now I'm up out of bed, gasping they will want to come in and, oh, heavens, knowing my luck and my Mother, she'll want to use the bathroom.

Then, another knock, it's my Mother, (AAAAAAAHHHHHHHHH), who says, "Are you OK, are you feeling alright?". I was.

So I say, in my most pathethic best "I'm not feeling too good" (hey, you're not thinking grammar at times like this).

But, My Mother wants to COME IN to see her poor, good, Joey. Oh My God!

Now my sweetheart is crying in the bathroom. I run over to the door - ssh, please. I turn around and see...now here's the really funny part...

All of her undergear all over the room; on the floor, on the chair, on the window sill, for heaven's sake. All that armor you girls used to wear. All those hooks... And a girdle. She's sobbing from the bathroom. I start sneezing to cover the sound.

I didn't have to fake it anymore, I now really was sick...

One more knock, my Mother, God Bless her lovely, dearly departed soul, says "That's alright, Honey, you stay in bed. We'll see you when we get back from church." I mumble a trembling mumble (and I wasn't faking either), "OK, Mom."

Silence



HALLELUIA, HALLELUIA, HalleluiaHalleluia Ha_lay_eh_lu_oo-yah. Bells are ringing, the Sun is shining, all is good in the World again, better even.

The rest of the story? You will just have to ask for me for that.

A hint... back to Atlantic City the next year. My brother (the monk) was back and we were sharing an adjoining room and My Girl was back, too ...
_______________________________________


And so it goes. Life is good. Poor little Joey (Cheshire)
________________________________________

The classmates and teachers I remember most?

Of course my best friend since 2nd grade, Jay Blumenthal.

Jay lives with his family in NYC, we still are best friends. I'll miss him and them a lot when I move, but we'll get together. Mr. Baker, Janet Biaggi, Rich Ferro, Mike Brockbank, Marika Contompasis, didn't know her well, but admired her Art in the Art class window, Dr. Campbell, his music changed my life. Although, I always remember my Father and Mother looking rather exhausted after sitting through those, seemingly, 20-hour concerts for the 6 straight years, counting my brother's 3 years before me, they had to go to. I don't know how they did it. Well, to be honest, my father did catch a few winks from time to time. I know my Mother must have wanted to, such a good heart.

Wrestling. I was actually good at wrestling, but then, I wouldn't be able to see Suzanne after school. I mean priorities. I still would have done the same thing. Playing football, not super good, but had my moments, and got my letter, finally, after 3 years.

The great basketball. You all know, of course, that Pat Riley is from Linton, in my brother John's class, 1963. Coach Tierney. Coach Ziamandanis. Coach Przybylo. Mr. Wells, the music teacher, who passed away much too young, in his forties, a long time ago now. I think I was in college when he died suddenly.

The Talent show, singing Misty, with Jay, Mike Brockbank and Neal Murray as a trio backup, all in Tuxedos. Felt like a million (that was a lot of money then, the big time). Miss Chaptalain, Spanish teacher and my talent show advisor, clapping like crazy.

Hobbies/Interests:

Art, Gardening, Volunteering, Church, Travel, walking. i would love to play Golf, maybe in Texas.

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Posted on: Nov 13, 2018 at 8:03 AM

Happy it's not your birthday yet Day, Dedi. Enjoy it. Joe Lapinski

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Jul 26, 2018 at 2:45 PM

HAPPY BIRTHDAY Joe..

Jul 26, 2018 at 2:43 PM

Eva Krause originally from Poland is a survivor of Auschwitz. I did a Cable TV interview with Eva in Palm Springs, CA.

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Jul 29, 2016 at 1:08 PM

HAPPY BIRTHDAY Joseph...

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Posted: Aug 02, 2017 at 9:54 AM
Posted: Dec 17, 2013 at 1:21 AM
at Jay Blumenthal's and Robin's (his great wife, who takes nice care of me when I'm there) apartment for a party on Christmas. They don't celebrate Christmas, but since everybody else is celebrating family, they do.
Posted: Dec 17, 2013 at 1:21 AM
a few years back at the Guggenheim Museum in Manhattan. I still had my beard. I might grow it again sometime.
Posted: Dec 17, 2013 at 1:21 AM
Holidays at Rockefeller Center, the skaters and the gorgeous decorations.
Posted: Dec 17, 2013 at 1:21 AM
I'm at my 40th college reunion last year. I had a great time.
Posted: Dec 17, 2013 at 1:21 AM
Downtown NY, Broadway, working on the new World Trade Center Tower. My last project. I have a friend and former colleague who went to work for the Port Authority, whose land it is, only two months before dying in one of the Towers on 9/11. It was a blessing, then, I wound up there for my last job.

I lived in NY on 9/11. I still have problems believing it all happened. A nightmare. God bless them and all those who died and got sick from trying to help the victims. It saddens me to see some of our Congressional representatives, from other parts of the country, play politics with the money they need and deserve. If you weren't there, as in any tragedy, you just can't fathom it.
Posted: Dec 17, 2013 at 1:21 AM
My younger son, John and I hangin' at a local pub. My Father would call it, a Saloon.
Posted: Dec 17, 2013 at 1:21 AM
Ugh. My tire goes flat right after church. That's not the lousy part. The lousy part was yours truly, the genius, took the tire out and didn't put it back in. That's what stupid and laughing looks like when you realize things sure ain't what they used to be, or were they ever, I don't remember.
Posted: Dec 17, 2013 at 1:21 AM
Still kicking, or is it dreaming? I don't know the difference at this point.
Posted: Dec 17, 2013 at 1:21 AM
On the subway platform to go to the METS game, those loveable losers. I tell my Yankee friends, when they jibe me about how the Mets stink, ya-dee, ya-dee, "Mets fans are losers". Your not telling me anything. After all, they always lose. On the other hand, I tell them, Yankee fans, guys, feel like losers unless they win every game, heck every pitch.