My name is Linda Jackson. I am a single parent with children that attend and have attended U-E High School. There is a small store called Hockey Bob's across from the High school and Wendy's on Washington Ave. There is a plan to close down Hockey Bob's for a larger parking lot for the Doctors office located right next door to Bob's store.
Bob has run this store for 12 years and two months. It has been a safe haven for kids all these years. They go there for pizza for lunch, a drink, some candy or to buy some of the collectable cards and accessories he sells, but they also go there for Bob. For all these years, Bob has been a positive force in their lives. He has counseled, guided and nurtured these kids. As a single parent, I knew that when I had to work and was going to be late, my kids had a safe and secure place to wait for me.
When you meet Bob, he is a well rounded individual that cares about the kids and the community around us. He watches out for them and keeps them on the straight and narrow. He doesn't rule with an iron hand, but a rubber chicken! They can be kids and have fun, but in the right way. If Bob loses this location, the community will suffer a great loss. Some of the kids jokingly call Endicott, Emptycott. I implore you to go to see Bob and find out for yourselves what a great asset he is in the location he is in. As of today, Bob is scheduled to close his doors October 31st. He is running out of time! This is not something he wants to do, but is being forced to do by the owners of the property, the Doctors office next door.
I sent an email to the Press and Sun, but the story they did, left out some much of what this place is all about. The kids have started a petition to protest his closing and there is also one at JFSnapp school as well. Not only have the kids been signing the petition, they have signed his walls over the years. When you first walk in it looks like graffiti, but if you reminisce, and think back to your high school days, it looks like the warm pages of your high school year book that all your friends had signed. While the building is in rough shape,which is due to the careless stewardship of the owners, a portion of it could be saved. The important part, Bob's Haven! This location has been there since I was in U-E HS a graduate of the class of 81.
So much of this community has been lost, emptied, polluted and abandoned. I appeal to you to at least give him and the kids he cares for a voice that can be heard around the area. My own child wants to picket and protest. While I have mixed feelings about it, because I am afraid for how things could turn out, I want them to have a forum to be heard. Please consider Bob's plight. If he disappears, there is not much left for these kids close by. Rumor has it that even Wendy's will be closing for reconstruction. You, at the station, wield a powerful sword and shield with your camera and TV time. I ask not for your sword, but for you to raise your shield and help us protect our children's sanctuary. They seem to have fewer and fewer of them left. We don't need any more empty lots downtown, We need more Hockey Bob's!
Thank you for your time.
1009 Pine Street
Endicott, NY 13760