Two prominent men active in Huntington affairs died Wednesday morning.
Dr. Alfred V. Sforza, a dentist who had written books about Huntington’s history, and Regis O’Neil, a former county legislator active in Republican politics, had been ill for some time.
Friends and family attributed both deaths to Covid-19.
Both had attended events sponsored by the Huntington chapter of the Ancient Order of Hibernians related to the St. Patrick’s Day parade on March 8.
“The loss of Dr. Alfred Sforza Is a great one,” Supervisor Chad Lupinacci said. “Dr. Sforza contributed so much to the Town of Huntington over the years. He was not only a respected dentist, but a local historian and author whose books have been a go-to source for those doing research on our great town. He most recently assisted the Town in its tribute to long-standing and recently retired Town Clerk of 38 years, Jo-Ann Raia. May Dr. Sforza’s legacy provide us with some comfort as we grieve the loss of this gentleman with his family and the community.”
Raia said, “We worked on numerous projects together which pertained to the history of the town. His smile captured your attention. Dr.Al was a great friend and gentle man, and I will miss him. His wife Barbara and their family are in my thoughts and prayers at this extremely difficult time.”
O’Neil served in the Suffolk County Legislature in the 1970s and later in the State Assembly. He had been grand marshal of the St. Patrick’s Day parade in 1998.
Raia said, “I was so very sorry to learn of Regis O’Neil’s passing due to Covid-19. He served the town with dedication. He supported me during my first campaign in 1981. He was always available to lend his expertise to candidates running for office. My condolences to his children.”
“Regis O’Neil was a legendary Huntingtonian who represented our Town as a member of the first Suffolk County Legislature and a New York State Assemblyman,” Lupinacci said. “We both grew up in the same part of Town. Regis was a tireless advocate for Huntington and his love for the Town was such that he spent his final years residing in Huntington Village. He was a fixture at charitable events, fundraisers, and social gatherings where he could do good for his fellow and sister citizens. Huntington has lost one of her favorite sons and on behalf of the Town I grieve with his family and loved ones.”