Northeast Bronx Seniors celebrate Valentine’s Day

The Northeast Bronx Senior Center honored couples married more than 50 years during their Valentine’s Day celebration. Photo by Amanda Marinaccio

Love was in the air at the Northeast Bronx Senior Center for the center’s annual Valentine’s Day celebration on Friday, February 12.

“I thought she was the most gorgeous kid ever and she still is,” senior Sam Cummando admitted, as he twirled his wife, Mae, across the dance floor.

As in years past, the romantic celebration included a special twist, as the center honored couples married 50 years or more.

For Mae and Sam Cummando, who’ll celebrate 60 years of marriage on Thursday, March 25, it was love at first sight.

“I just looked at him and wanted him and it’s been like that for 60 years,” Mae Cummando said.“I still get jealous when other women are around.”

The celebration began with a performance by the Northeast Bronx Senior Center Glee Club.Then the center’s most enduring couples were presented with flowers and danced to a classic anniversary waltz.

Rose and Nicholas Volpicella will celebrate 68 years of marriage in June, attributed their successful partnership to respect for one another’s needs.

“You need to try to understand each other,” Rose Volpicella said.“Couples have to cooperate.”

According to Estelle and Anthony Marra, it’s important for young couples today to talk out their issues and control their tempers.The Marras will celebrate 55 years of bliss on Friday, February 26.

“They need to discuss things,” Estelle said.“Don’t get angry and don’t yell. Just talk.Agree to disagree.”

The soiree ended with a delicious lunch for all.

“It’s important to honor [the couples],” Northeast Bronx Senior Center director Sylvia Ponce said. “Most of these couples have been married longer than I’ve been alive. These are seniors who come here every day. They sign up at the beginning of January to attend this event.They get all dressed up and it makes them feel good.”

Other couples honored were Anna and Ben Berardi, Josephine and Nino Valenti, Viola and Eugene Namesnyik, Gloria and Edward Snow, Maria and Vito Cavallo, Gertrude and Josef Winkler, Julia and Joseph Czerkawski, and Virginia and Nicholas Castiglione.

Reach reporter Amanda Marinaccio at 718 742-3394 or

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