Street sign recognizes candy store owner

The Lusk family and Councilman Jimmy Vacca unveiled a street sign on Saturday, April 25 honoring Larry Lusk, a fixture in the Westchester Square community for years. Photo by Kevin Heckman

Friends, family and officials gathered at the corner of Frisby Avenue and Benson Street to pay tribute to the owner of a candy store that was a gathering spot for children and adults in the Westchester Square community in the 1940s, 1950s, and 1960s.

The corner of Frisby Avenue and Benson Street now has an honorary street sign commemorating Larry Lusk, the owner of the local candy store near the corner from 1944 to 1970. The sign was unveiled in a ceremony on Saturday, April 25.

Larry Lusk’s daughter-in-law Sandi Lusk, of the Westchester Square Zerega Improvement Organization, said Larry Lusk’s passion for his neighborhood made him well known in the community.

“When I began organizing with community groups in the neighborhood 18 years ago, the people I would talk to would always ask me if I was Larry Lusk’s daughter-in-law,” Sandi said. “That corner was where his little piece of the world was located, and now it will always be that way.”

Larry Lusk’s candy store was named L.M. Stationary on Frisby Avenue between Benson and Overing streets.

Children often gathered after school to buy candy, enjoy a fountain drink, and exchange baseball cards. His candy store was directly across the street from the local neighborhood school, P.S. 14. Lusk lived behind his store, even after it closed, until 2004.

The street sign overlay was approved by the city council on December 18 after both Councilman Jimmy Vacca and Community Board 10 requested that honor.

Councilman Jimmy Vacca, Community Board 10 district manager Kenneth Kearns, and John Bonizio of the Association of Merchants and Business Professionals of Westchester Square attended the event.

“This is really a fitting tribute to someone who lived his whole life in a community and typified what a traditional candy store was about,” Vacca said. “You would go to a candy store to meet people and learn what was going on in the neighborhood. We a memorializing someone who has made a fantastic contribution to the Westchester Square community.”

Kearns said he remembered when candy stores throughout New York City sold two-cent plains, stick pretzels, egg creams, and malteds. He said that CB 10 was happy to grant the request of the Lusk family to have a street overlay honoring Larry Lusk at the corner.

“The board recognized the contribution that candy stores once made to older days in New York,” Kearns said. “The board passed a resolution in favor of the street overlay, and was happy to contribute to this event.”

Councilman Jimmy Vacca and the Lusk family unveiled the new street-sign at the event.

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