My Dad passed away this morning. It is an odd feeling, because no matter how old you are, Dad is still Dad. He was my best friend, and so much the reason I am who I am today. I am so glad there are no regrets - being able to talk with him every day was a joy. Telling him that I loved him and hearing him tell me that he loved me for 50 years is so satisfying. He had a great life. I hope as you read this, you can strive to love the people around you the way we loved my Dad.
Artie Lembo lived the American Dream. The only son of Italian immigrants, Francis Flammia and Philip Lembo, he was born in Queens, New York on December 11, 1931. He attended Newtown High School where he graduated in 1948.
Four generations of Lembos: Phil, Artie, Vinny, and Michael
After graduation, Artie joined the United States Marines, and served our country during the Korean War where he rose to the rank of Sergeant, commanding 5 tanks in the Kimpo Penninsula.
Like many Americans who went off to war, Artie returned to the States and began the next phase of his life.
While working at his family’s business in Bayville, NY, Artie met the love of his life, Theresa Bertolino from Oyster Bay. After a brief courtship, Artie and Terry married on April 7, 1956. They were married for almost 60 years.
The couple settled in Bayville, where Artie became a Nassau County policeman, while Terry set up their home. Their first child, Philip Michael Lembo was born 1957. Vincent in 1959, and Arthur Jr. was born in 1964. All three boys grew up in the house Artie build on Hickory Road in Bayville.
As a Nassau County police officer, Artie began his career patrolling Lattingtown and Oyster Bay in the familiar blue and orange car #202. He was eventually promoted to Sergeant, working in the 2nd Precinct. Artie ended his career in 1987 after 32 years as a Lieutenant in Police Headquarters, having held numerous positions at the Department.
Although his vocation was that of a police officer, Artie received his greatest joy as father and grandfather. Raising three boys in Bayville, Artie participated in numerous activities that interested the boys including scouting, sports, and camping among others. He was filled with joy as each of his boys were married and began raising families of their own. His daughters-in-laws Vivian, Veronica, and Karen all appreciated the role he played as a second father to them.
Artie having a rousing game of chess with Arthur III
Artie with granddaughters Emily and Katie
He was a loving grandfather to Michael, Michelle, Emily, Allison, Arthur, Nathan, Adam, and Katie, in addition to granddaughter-in-law Lexi, and future grandson-in-law, Cheon Ji Mun . His oldest grandson Michael followed in Artie’s footsteps becoming a Prince George’s County Police Officer, while Emily literally followed his footsteps back to Korea as a Fulbright Scholar.
Michael, the future PG County police officer trying out a NCPD motocycle with Grandpa
Artie with his granddaughter Allison (and Michelle)
His favorite verse was Jeremiah 29:12,13:
Then you will call on me and come and pray to me, and I will listen to you. You will seek me and find me when you seek me with all your heart.
Artie Lembo sought his God, found Him, and found peace for himself.
Emily and Chris at the Korean Army base, saluting grandpa.