My Father Francesco Gerbino passed away on May 24th 2005:
on the same day ironically that his Grandson James Francesco
Gerbino was born 17 years earlier.
To add to the mystery the remaining Gerbino sons of Frank,
Francesco Gerbino all had dreams of visits in one form or
another from their late brother Francis "Frankie" Gerbino
in dreams a week to ten days before his passing foretelling
Francesco Gerbino was a New York City subway motorman for
28 years who thankfully lived longer in retirement than
he did on the job! Way to go Frank!
He raised four sons Joseph, Jeffrey, Francis (Frank)
and Mark leaving Brooklyn and Elmont New York behind
to move into a summer home on Sea Cliff, Long Island.
He progressively built that home around a wacky and
extended family that included his Mother, Two female
pastors of our Church. (To add to the fun our parents
converted from Cathlolic to Pentecostal while we were
just very small) Along with a series of mostly strange
rentors of a downstairs apartment.
The purchase of that home was my Father's one great
financial move in life. He sold lots of the original 5
acres on a hill over looking Long Island Sound and
Hempstead Harbor to pay the never ending debt our house
so often found itself in.
Father, subway motorman, carpenter, gardner, mechanic
cook and chief procurer of our household. What he
lacked in sentimentality he made up for in blunt
practicality. If not for our fair haired Mother
(Marjory Miller) who my Father met in Washington DC
at the close of World War Two with the opening line
of "Hey Red". I doubt many birthdays or holidays would
have been celebrated or even recognized.
Running from the depression and mean streats of Brooklyn
my Father found food, shelter, clothing and faith.
Were what he valued in life along with his physical
mantra: work. How he loved to work. Work for money
was one thing but the glory and joy he seemed to find
in the simple act of manual labor, moving giant rocks
from our North Shore of Long Island yard. Cutting trees
laying patio stones, digging countless holes and carving
pathways like Lewis and Clark heading over the Rockies.
My only remaining wish was that he could have seen me
succeed more in the field I chose than he got to and
that he did not have to see his most beloved son Francis
a Sargent with the NYPD who passed away tragically in
2001. He lived to be 86 and passed away thankfully
very quickly stepping out the door of his Kutztown, PA
home and falling off the front stoop.
He kept telling my Mother in those last months before
his death that he was seeing my late brother Frank in
the yard around his home. That would make it 4 for 4
on Sargent Gerbino's contact list for updates on the
afterworld. There is no doubt that my Mother will also
see my brother Frank before her time comes and yes I
too (I only hope its not soon!) Farewell brave Dad who
fought off so many of our early demons.
In the end I don't you think you fell you just saw
your son in the yard waving to you to come along now
didn't you? You fell on this earth but I hope you
woke up in heaven in the arms of your son!
Your loving son,