NEWBURGH - On March 29, 2013, City officials past and present joined the family of the late Tyrone Crabb for the groundbreaking of the park at South and Grand Street dedicated in his name.
Former Mayor Nick Valentine, former City Manager Harry Porr, and former Councilman Steve Rockafellow were on hand along with Steve Gold, Chief of Staff for Assemblyman Frank Skartados, Mayor Judy Kennedy, Deputy Mayor Regina Angelo, and City Manager Richard F. Herbek.
A City Councilman from 1985-1989, Crabb was elected Mayor in November of 1999, but died on December 22, 1999 soon after taking the oath of office. He was a teacher at Newburgh Free Academy, an Orange County Mental Health Caseworker, served on the NYS Planning and Advisory Board under three governors, and was Chairman of the Newburgh Republican Committee and the Newburgh Housing Authority. Following his death, the City Council appointed his widow, Mary Crabb, to serve as Mayor.
Community members have lobbied for a park on the vacant lot across from Calvary Presbyterian Church and Old Town Cemetery since the late ‘90s. The original design concept for Tyrone Crabb Memorial Park was created by local architect Drew Kartiganer. For years, however, the City’s finances could not support the creation of this park.
When the City was finally able to allocate funds to match a grant from New York State Department of Parks, an archeological survey located 19th century ruins on the site, and the project temporarily stalled. The Department of Planning & Development, the State Historic Preservation Office (SHPO), community members, and project architects Eberlin and Eberlin Associates, adjusted the design to build the park while respecting the site’s history.
Construction of Tyrone Crabb Memorial Park is expected to commence later this year. As a final tribute read, it will be "dedicated to a man who always knew that people’s similarities are more profound than their differences, and was determined to prove it."
"Having had the pleasure of working with him on my first campaign in the City of Newburgh, Tyrone Crabb’s leadership and dedication to the City was something I kept with me all my years of office," said former Mayor Valentine. "Therefore, dedicating a park in his name is something that I am truly proud of."