When you think of a town or a community your first thoughts are generally about the geographical location and physical characteristics of that area. Eventually you begin to think of the people that make up that location. Within this population are people you see every day as you go about your daily routines and, then, there are people that are occasionally seen but are never obvious and who do not seek attention for themselves or for what they do. These are the people who make those geographical locations into towns and, even more so, into communities.
The community of Bayport – Blue Point has had the good fortune to have such individuals that made us more than just a location on a map. Twenty-three years ago, Michael G. Marchan Jr. had a vision and took it upon himself to begin a scholarship for a deserving high school student in Bayport – Blue Point. He knew a man, Vinny Perri, who was a little league coach for over twenty-five years, and who went about his life quietly just working with young kids and helping them grow and learn through their participation in baseball. This was the person that Michael Marchan decided to honor by creating a scholarship in his name. Since its inception, The Vinny Perri Memorial Scholarship has been awarded annually. The major fundraiser for this scholarship has been a golf tournament.
The Vinny Perri Memorial Scholarship committee and the entire community of Bayport – Blue Point were saddened by the passing of Michael Marchan. Mike was the epitome of the selfless community worker and friend. He spent his life helping people.
He was a New York City Fireman; he served in the United States Marines; he was a member of the Bayport Fire Department; he coached little league and was a loving husband, dad and grandfather. He could be seen behind the counter at his store in Bayport, Mr. Video, and in recent years, as a sales manager at Sleepy’s. He was always approachable and he was always one of the first people to offer aid and assistance to anyone in need. His heart was very big and his willingness to help people was unbridled.
The Scholarship Committee now awards four $2,500 scholarships to graduating high school seniors in Bayport – Blue Point school district. In 2013, we added an additional award, the VP Memorial Scholarship in memory of Jeannine David.
Jeannine was our first scholarship recipient in 1990 and has supported our organization since then. The community was saddened to learn of Jeannine’s passing in 2012. She lost a courageous battle with cancer but never lost her love of life. After college, Jeannine began a successful career in sales, which was no surprise because to know her was to love her! Jeannine made all the people in her life feel important. She had a great sense of humor and an infectious laugh that could light up the room. Jeannine epitomized what we look for in our scholar athletes and the Bayport – Blue Point community is proud to honor her memory.
In 2016, we awarded another scholarship in honor of our fallen friend, brother and hero, Firefighter Greg Chevalley, who passed away in 2015 due to complications from cancer caused by ingesting the contaminated air at the World Trade Center following 9/11. As a proud member of the FDNY, Greg grew up in Bayport and settled close-by in Patchogue with his wife and two sons. He is dearly missed.
In 2017 we added yet another scholarship honoring one of Bayport’s finest, Ed Herting, who passed away earlier that year. Ed was an outspoken supporter of all things Bayport-Blue Point, residing here for over 45 years, serving in the FDNY as well Chief of the Bayport Fire Department for 42 years. Ed was a founding member of the Vinny Perri Scholarship Committee since its inception in 1990.
© 2021 Vinny Perri Memorial Scholarship Foundation