Subscribe

NY Q&A: Remembering Ed Koch


Epoch Times Staff
Created: February 5, 2013 Last Updated: February 5, 2013
Related articles: United States » New York City
Print E-mail to a friend Give feedback

NEW YORK—Thousands of friends and family attended the funeral of former New York City Mayor Ed Koch Monday. The ceremony took place at Temple Emanu-El, the largest synagogue in New York City. Koch died of congestive heart failure at the age of 88 on Feb. 1.

The Epoch Times asked New Yorkers, “What is your favorite memory of Ed Koch?”

 

Yvonne Kearney, 58, unemployed

Yvonne Kearney (Samira Bouaou/The Epoch Times)

Yvonne Kearney (Samira Bouaou/The Epoch Times)

It was on St. Patrick’s Day, and he was at the Puck Building, and he came in and said, “I’ve just been to the other St. Patrick’s dinner,” and he was just so full of energy and everything that’s great about New York, it was so fun. And another time I was behind him in line for a meal, and he said to me, “How is the dessert?” and I said, “It’s delicious,” and he was there with his plate and he was just like anybody else at the place enjoying himself. He was a great guy and did all the things for New Yorkers that everybody loves about New York, especially people that live here.

 

Coby Shemesh, 46, truck driver

Coby Shemesh (Samira Bouaou/The Epoch Times)

Coby Shemesh (Samira Bouaou/The Epoch Times)

He wasn’t perfect, but he was larger than life. He really cared about people you know, the ones who wake up in the morning and go to work, hardworking people—he really cared about them and he fixed the city, he did a great job. May he rest in peace. I remember in 1980, everybody remembers that with the transit strike, that he was standing on the Brooklyn Bridge and he encourage everybody to walk and to go to work. I’ll never forget that.

 

Allan Traeger, 70, retired Board of Education teacher

Allan Traeger (Samira Bouaou/The Epoch Times)

Allan Traeger (Samira Bouaou/The Epoch Times)

I met him at the Raleigh-Durham Airport, we were going through security together to get on the same plane and I turned to him and said, “How’m I doing?” and he said, “You’re doing great, but how’m I doing?” and he was just a terrific human being. We were visiting friends and we were waiting to go through security, and there he was right next to me and we boarded the same plane and came back to New York together.

 

Tessa Cook, 56, employment specialist

Tessa Cook (Samira Bouaou/The Epoch Times)

Tessa Cook (Samira Bouaou/The Epoch Times)

The thing I know about him the most is that he would always say, “How’m I doing?” and he had a really great personality. And I heard an interview on NPR the other day about how he said that he was really shy. One day he asked somebody, “How’m I doing?” and that’s when he got that person’s attention and he made that work for him. He overcame his shyness in a lot of ways by doing things like that. I think my favorite memory of him was on ‘Sex in the City.’ He guest starred in one of the episodes and he was on the runway doing a fashion show, and Carrie was on the runway doing the fashion show with him, yeah!

 

Peter Serrano, 42, Con Ed worker

Peter Serrano (Samira Bouaou/The Epoch Times)

Peter Serrano (Samira Bouaou/The Epoch Times)

The first time I saw him on TV when I was sitting in the living room with my mother, he was going through campaigns and all that, and I heard him say, “Hey, how’m I doing?’ It was something that was stuck in my mind since that time; I was maybe only 6 years old. I was telling my mother, “Mommy who’s that?” “Oh, he’s going for mayor.” “Oh, I kind of like the style.” He was quick-witted, that’s what I liked.

 

Robert Taylor, 67, counselor, Harlem Hospital Center

Robert Taylor (Samira Bouaou/The Epoch Times)

Robert Taylor (Samira Bouaou/The Epoch Times)

I campaigned for him on his last term, before and after his last term. He was going for his 4th term and I campaigned for him. He won a great campaign, that’s what I remember. When he first came to office, I remember that part, the city was seized in bankruptcy, and I remember when Mayor Daley of Chicago offered to bail us out, and Mayor Koch said “No, I’ll handle it myself.” And how he handled it was the city workers paid for it, for two weeks, we paid for it. A couple years later when the city was great, we got our money back.

 

Rita Schwartz, retired city administrator

Rita Schwartz (Samira Bouaou/The Epoch Times)

Rita Schwartz (Samira Bouaou/The Epoch Times)

When I worked for him during the governor’s race, and I would be lying on the floor at campaign headquarters, I had a bad back. I was on the phone making calls and he would step over me and say, “Schmoo, get up,” which was not my name, but that’s what he decided I was gonna be, from then on, “Schmoo.” He lost that race, but he was a great leader, I loved him.

 

Adela Jasoyemi, 56, Human Resources Administration, City of New York, case manager

Adela Jasoyemi (Samira Bouaou/The Epoch Times)

Adela Jasoyemi (Samira Bouaou/The Epoch Times)

I would like to share something about Mayor Koch, too. He was the one that gave me a job in 1982. I’ve been working for this city 30 years. He was the best, Mayor Koch, he always says, “How you doin’, how you feelin’, everything is ok?” He always loved people; he’s a very, very kind man.

 

Leonore Blitz, over 60, works in philanthropy and public service

Leonore Blitz (Samira Bouaou/The Epoch Times)

Leonore Blitz (Samira Bouaou/The Epoch Times)

My favorite memory of him is him always asking, “How are you doing, how am I doing?” and then telling it like it is. My overall memory of him is he saved the city from a fiscal crisis, I mean the deterioration of the city was just something that you can’t imagine unless you lived here. And he brought it back, and set the

standard, I think, for future mayors, to live up to that standard, to be more frank, to be more open, to take into consideration all the boroughs and not just Manhattan. So he was a terrific person, a wonderful mayor, and served to the moment he died. It’s just an extraordinary example to everyone.

The Epoch Times publishes in 35 countries and in 21 languages. Subscribe to our e-newsletter.

Please send news tips to nyc_news@epochtimes.com

 

Tags:



   

GET THE FREE DAILY E-NEWSLETTER


Selected Topics from The Epoch Times

Joey Daoud