Tag Archives: Steve Piorkowski

Steve Piorkowski, energetic Bayside coach, dies from cancer at 54

| ejankiewicz@queenscourier.com

Photo courtesy of Steve Piorkowski's family

Steve Piorkowski, a Bayside High School softball and basketball coach known throughout the athletic league for his winning teams and his determination to fight a life-threatening disease, died at 54 after struggling with cancer for three years.

“He would push us all to be the best we can be,” said Gayle Bernstein, a former student athlete from Bayside High School who was coached by Piorkowski. Bernstein attended the funeral that was held on Monday.

“He taught us to put our passion into something that makes us successful,” she said. “He helped shape me to be the woman I am today.”

Piorkowski was diagnosed in 2012 with an aggressive form of cancer that damaged his spine and broke his neck. From a wheelchair, the Bayside coach succeeded in fighting back the cancer and eventually regaining his ability to walk. But the cancer resurged in November 2014, and his long battle ended on Feb. 18 when he died.

With 23 years of coaching experience, Piorkowski often led the Bayside Lady Commodores to the city championship. Many of his players have gone on to win scholarships to universities across the country.

After his diagnosis, and while he continued to coach, Piorkowski was invited to Citi Field where he was honored by the Mets with their Spirit Award. He was joined by his family and more than 250 Bayside High School alumni at the event. His fight with cancer was noted by national publications like ESPN and MSG.

His doctors diagnosed him with multiple myeloma and he was given radiation treatment.

“We are sad to announce that Mr. Stephen Piorkowski, our beloved physical education teacher and coach, passed away Wednesday evening after a long bout with cancer,” Bayside High School Principal Michael Athy wrote to the school community. “Steve taught and coached at Bayside for over 20 years, turning frightened freshmen into starring seniors. He will be missed by our entire community and our thoughts are with the Piorkowski family during this sorrowful time.”


Queens’ Morning Roundup

| lguerre@queenscourier.com

Passengers Sue JetBlue Over Pilot Meltdown

A group of passengers is suing JetBlue, saying they feared for their lives when a pilot had to be physically restrained during their flight in March. In a lawsuit filed in State Supreme Court in Queens, the ten passengers claimed Jet Blue was “grossly negligent” when it allowed pilot Clayton Osbon to fly. Read more: [NY1]

Family Mourns Drowning Of 14-Year-Old In Far Rockaway

A Queens family is in mourning following the drowning death of a 14-year-old boy at a Far Rockaway beach.  Akeem Craig of South Jamaica was swimming with his friend on Tuesday. Authorities responded to a call indicating the two teens were in danger in the water. A bystander was able to pull one boy to safety. It took divers from both the FDNY and NYPD 40 minutes to find Craig’s body. Read more: [NY1]

City to roll out new wheel boot program as soon as Monday

The wheel boot, a groan-inducing sight for motorists in other cities, will hit the outer boroughs as soon as Monday, the Daily News has learned. The city is planning to boot ticket scofflaws by the end of June, a city official confirmed Wednesday. The three- to six-month pilot program will begin in Brooklyn, then Queens and Staten Island and will be eventually rolled out citywide. Read more: [New York Daily News]

Steve Piorkowski, softball coach at Bayside HS, recovers from cancer and broken neck that kept him off the field for most of 2012

Steve Piorkowski, the bouncy, long-haired softball coach at Bayside HS, is used to people approaching him on the street, thinking they know him when they really don’t. Read more: [New York Daily News]

At Queens Art Express Festival, artists tackle policy issues

A Queens art festival that kicks off on Thursday aims to show that artists can do more than perform a song-and-dance or paint a pretty picture. Queens Art Express will include three exhibitions that open the floor to 12 artists across a variety of disciplines on some of the biggest hot-button public policy issues of the day. Read more: [New York Daily News]

Mets consider ‘quiet’ section in Citi Field stands with no music and lower-volume PA announcements

Quiet please, the Mets are trying to play baseball. The Amazin’s are silently floating plans for a “designated quiet-seating section” in Citi Field. The team e-mailed a survey to fans yesterday, asking about their ballpark experience — including queries about the scoreboard, between-inning entertainment, music, and even interactions with Mr. Met. Read more: [New York Post]

Slay victim’s daughter shows compassion for killer

The daughter of an elderly Queens man who was beaten to death outside his home showed surprising compassion for his killer yesterday as the homeless veteran was sentenced to 19 years in prison. Read more: [New York Post]