For more than 40 years, Stan and Shirley Romaine organized the annual commemoration of the atomic bombings of Hiroshima and Nagasaki – first in Great Neck, and then in Manhasset.
Now this year’s program, commemorating the 74th anniversary of the atomic bombings, will be dedicated to the memory of the Romaines, who were longtime members of the pro-peace and anti-nuclear group Great Neck Sane/Peace Action. They both died earlier this year.
“The leadership and dedication by Shirley and Stan – and their marvelous activist partnership– is an inspiration to everyone,” Michael D’ Innocenzo, a board member of the LI Alliance for Peaceful Alternatives and former Hofstra professor, wrote after Shirley Romaine’s death.
The annual Commemoration of the U.S. Atomic Bombings of Hiroshima and Nagasaki will take place on Tuesday, Aug. 6, at 7:30 p.m. at the Unitarian Universalist Congregation at Shelter Rock in Manhasset. Admission is free.
The Social Justice Committee of Unitarian Universalist Congregation at Shelter Rock, Great Neck Sane/Peace Action and the LI Alliance for Peaceful Alternatives are jointly sponsoring the program.
Long Islanders annually gather to remember those lost during the atomic bombings, the consequences of the decision, and call for both nuclear disarmament and for the United States to sign a United Nations treaty on the Prohibition of Nuclear Weapons.
This event’s speakers include the congregation’s Rev. Ned Wight, Temple Emanuel of Great Neck Rabbi Robert Widom, the Rev. Mark Lukens of Bethany Congregational Church, Margaret Melkonian, the director of the LI Alliance for Peaceful Alternatives, Hofstra University senior and Peace Fellow Adam Hockenberry, and Claire Deroche, the congregation’s social justice coordinator.
Farah Chandu and Willow, a women’s a cappella choir, will also perform.
“We are running out of time as we face catastrophe with the threats of nuclear weapons use and the global climate crisis,” Melkonian said. “The time is now to make peace with people and to make peace with the planet. The time is now to ban nuclear weapons and to ban fossil fuels.”