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Nov 21, 2011 1:09 PMPublication: The Southampton Press

Water Mill Community Notes, November 24

Nov 21, 2011 1:09 PM

It’s that time of year when we reflect on those things for which we are grateful. As for me, my list is endless and if I have room here I’ll note some of it at the end. In the meantime, here is what a few of our Water Mill friends and neighbors are thankful for.

Jim O’Hagen, the owner of Core Dynamics in Water Mill, has had a big year. Diagnosed with a form of leukemia, he’s spent much of the year battling the disease and still found time to run his business, love his family, and fundraise to help others with his newfound cause. And so he says, “Wow, the list goes on and on this year. I am thankful for all of the wonderful, generous people in my life that have helped us raise a tremendous amount of money for the Leukemia/Lymphoma Society.

“I am most thankful for my beautiful daughter, Kiarra, and wife, Tracy. They both make the most difficult days so much better. I am thankful for my amazing staff. They are my family and my friends, and in my absence they have worked so hard to keep my vision of what Core Dynamics is today. Strength for life. I could go on and on and on.”

As an endnote, Jim is doing pretty well. The treatments are tough, but so is he. Jim, I am sure everyone in the Water Mill joins me in being grateful for your role in our community.

Rachel Verno, the head of the Water Mill Citizens Advisory Committee, provides an excellent segue—in addition to being thankful that she gets to be with family over the holidays and that she lives in such a close community where people care so much about one another, she wrote that she is “most thankful that my really great friend Jim O is doing so well.”

New to Water Mill, having moved to Farmstead Lane just this year, Megan McEntee, wrote, “I am thankful for having such a supportive and loving family, including three happy and healthy children who bring such joy to my life. Also that my father has been able to battle cancer with a clean bill of health this year. I am also thankful for the amazing community we live in! We have been so fortunate to have such wonderful people come into our lives!”

Caitlin Faron noted that “with all the college tours and the realization that [her daughter] Diven is going to be leaving home in less than a year, I’ve been rather nostalgic (OK, downright weepy if you must know) but I’ve been thinking a lot about how growing up in this neighborhood with so many other kids has shaped the lives of our kids. All the milestones big and small, like being allowed to go around the block alone and learning to ride their bikes on the flag lots, as well as almost always being able to knock on a few doors and find a friend to hang out with, have given them a childhood with a real sense of community. For me, growing up in the city where you never just knocked on someone’s door without arrangements in advance, it was admittedly a hard transition, but living in this kind of neighborhood has changed me too, and I realize how grateful I am for all of it. Time for a block party!”

Yep, I agree, Caitlin, let’s get that block party going this summer.

Another business owner, Jason Belkin of Hampton Coffee Company, based in Water Mill, said, “This may sound cheesy, but all of us at Hampton Coffee Company are sincerely thankful to all our wonderful customers for their support as we begin our 18th year here in Water Mill. We are so proud of being a part of the Water Mill community and couldn’t do it without their support. And of course, I’m thankful for my son, Cian, and this is his first Thanksgiving!”

Jason, it does not sound cheesy and besides, as I wrote in my reply, cheese is good. And it’s worth noting that Jason plays a huge role in the community spirit, giving back so much to the many causes and groups in our area.

It seems I am out of room here and so just know my thoughts of Thanksgiving include so many of the wonderful people in this community and farther afield.

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