March 27, 2018
BATTER UP “JOE D”
Dear T-D Family,
With baseball season just a few days away, it’s good for the T-D Albanian team to know who is batting fourth and serving as a clean-up hitter – Joe DioGuardi.
Last June, T-D recognized, saluted, and honored the former U.S. Congressman for all of his work and time helping Albanians in Albania and throughout the Balkans through crises after crises.
For T-D, Joe D has become a passport for entering the Balkan world and an EZ pass for meeting diplomats and ambassadors from Albania itself and countries close by like Kosovo and Montenegro.
Last night T-D received ten $50.00 tickets gratis to a fundraiser for an Albanian musician in need of financial help. Ironically, the event was held in the Scandinavian House on 38th Street and Park Avenue in the Big Apple. T-D settled down there a few years before when the school embraced the five Scandinavian countries and visited three – Iceland, Sweden, and Denmark. “Knocking on Valhalla’s Door” was the moniker given to the 2014 – 2015 annual academic theme.
T-D’s Albanian adventurers, all of whom will be in the Balkans come April 20th, boarded our Vango at 5:00 PM and came back to campus five hours later. The concert was a huge success with the SRO crowd.
Dinner was on 31st Street and Lex at Brother Jimmy’s, Caden Beck’s ’17 old stomping grounds. There the T-D contingent met up with Harry King ’10, a future clean-up batter. Harry, a Fordham University alumnus, was spending his last day in New York before traveling to Texas after accepting his promotion from Cion Investments. Harry’s parents have moved from their home in Pelham and now reside in downtown New Rochelle. Both Harry and his dad Charlie loved traveling with T-D and especially enjoyed T-D’s annual Notre Dame Weekend.
Joe D created a beautiful night for half a dozen faculty members and ten T-D seniors. For me and for those who follow in his footsteps to Stamford, Monroe College in the Bronx and in New York City on Park Avenue, he has become a beloved epic Albanian figure.
It’s good to know there is always someone waiting in the “Dougout” to help T-D. Whenever and wherever T-D plays ball in the Balkans, everyone should know about our long ball hitter… Joe D.
Albania will be T-D’s next grand slam!
Douglas E. Fleming, Jr.
N.B. Kind regards to Richard Lukaj, who was unable to join in the fun. He was at home convalescing after a serious fall.