Left to right: Frank Marcantonio Jr, Esq.; Manhattan Borough President Gale Brewer; Speaker of the City Council Melissa Mark-Viverito; Actor/Activist, LuLu LoLo Pascale; Gloria Quiñones, Esq.; VMF Co-chair, Roberto Ragone; Back row: East Harlem Historian, Christopher Bell; VMF Co-chair Gerald Meyer.
December 17, 2017
The Vito Marcantonio Forum (VMF) is especially grateful to LuLu LoLo Pascale, a native East Harlem resident and founding member of the VMF, for her dedicated hard work with Speaker of the City Council, Melissa Mark-Viverito, in accomplishing the goal of naming the northeast corner of East 116th Street and Lexington Avenue in New York City, the Vito Marcantonio Lucky Corner.
The event featured keynote speech from Speaker of the City Council Melissa Mark-Viverito who explained to the large crowd on hand that she is proud to serve the same district that Marcantonio once did.
Manhattan Borough President Gale Brewer explained how Marcantonio’s legacy should serve as an inspiration for all.
Photo by Gloria Quiñones.
Vito Marcantonio’s first cousin, once removed, Frank L. Marcantonio Jr., Esq., shared his family’s pride in connection to the late, great congressman.
Actor/Activist, LuLu LoLo Pascale, performed her “Personal Memory of Vito Marcantonio” that took place when she was a young girl growing up in East Harlem near his headquarters that was just three blocks from the Lucky Corner.
Melissa Mark-Viverito’s mentor Gloria Quiñones, Esq. discussed the importance of Marcantonio’s place in the history of Puerto Rico and how Marc’s legacy can provide a source of guidance for today’s leaders.
Lucky Corner during Marcantonio’s re-election campaign.
VMF Co-Chairman, Roberto Ragone, performed “Marc for Mayor,” which re-enacted a speech Marcantonio gave at a political rally at the Lucky Corner in 1949.
The ceremony was rounded-out by a poetry reading of The Litany of San Vito, a poem dedicated to Marcantonio that was written by founding VMF member and author of seven books, Gil Fagiani.
The Litany of San Vito was read in three languages: Gloria Quiñones, read the Spanish version, and VMF Vice President Maria Lisella read it in Italian and local Historian Christopher Bell. See the video below for an earlier reading by LuLu LoLo Pascale at Woodlawn Cemetery in 2014:
VMF Co-Chairman, Dr. Gerald Meyer, discussed the history of the Vito Marcantonio Forum that he co-founded in 2011, stating that “the Vito Marcantonio Forum looks forward to memorializing other sites associated with the life and work of this great spokesperson of all those who had been left out of the American Dream and advocate for a program of social justice and peace.”
The ceremony commenced with Melissa Mark-Viverito, along with members of the VMF and residents of East Harlem, pulling a rope that unveiled the street sign that was mounted on the corner lamppost.
We have additional pictures of the Vito Marcantonio Lucky Corner Streetcorner Co-Naming Ceremony posted on our Facebook and Twitter accounts that we encourage you to Like, Share, Comment, and Re-Tweet. We also have pictures in our photo gallery that you can find here.
We also want to thank all the press who covered the Vito Marcantonio Lucky Corner Co-Naming Ceremony, especially AM New York, who ran a great story: https://www.amny.com/news/harlem-vito-marcantonio-1.15498344
The People’s World will be printing an article written by Gabe Falsetta and Gary Bono that we will soon post a link to.
The City Council of New York City’s official press release on the event can be found here: https://council.nyc.gov/press/2017/12/17/1554/
Below is a video of the unveiling of the Vito Marcantonio Lucky Corner street sign that we thank Dorothy He for providing: