Following a lifetime serving his community, Lance Corporal Matthew “Mr. Manhasset” Falcone was posthumously honored with a bridge over the Northern State Parkway bearing his name Saturday.
Hundreds of local residents and elected officials gathered at the Mary Jane Davies Green to honor the past president of the Marine Corps League who died in September 2020 from the coronavirus. He was 83.
The ceremony featured performances from the Manhasset High School string quartet and the Nassau County Firefighters Pipes and Drums. The Manhasset-Lakeville Fire Department also provided a large American flag for the ceremony.
American Legion Post 304 led the Presentation of the Colors, with Falcone’s daughter, Denise Cestone, in attendance for the ceremony.
Falcone was a past president of the Marine Corps League, a member of North Hempstead’s Veteran’s Advisory Committee and president of American Legion Post 304 in Manhasset. State Sen. Anna Kaplan (D-North Hills) said she wanted to find a “larger-than-life” way to honor Falcone.
“Matty was a larger-than-life kind of a guy,” Kaplan said. “I thought a bridge would be a fittingly big way to recognize him, but most importantly, bridges bring communities together, and that’s what Matty was all about.”
Born and raised in Brooklyn, Falcone graduated from The City College of New York before working 65 years in the electrical industry, where he retired as superintendent for Forest Electrical Corporation.
His other civic engagement included the Church of Saint Mary, Manhasset Community Club, Knights of Columbus, Manhasset Public Library and the Kiwanis Club, among others.
“A veteran, civic leader, and community activist. Mr. Falcone was affectionately known as Mr. Manhasset,” state Assemblywoman Gina Sillitti said. “His community service and achievements, along with today’s dedication, is a testament to all he has done for our community and our country.“
Town of North Hempstead Supervisor Jennifer DeSena described Falcone as “an institution” in the Manhasset community and “a man dedicated to his family, community and service.”
“I will forever be thankful for his wisdom, guidance, and generosity in helping me establish the St. Vincent de Paul Society,” DeSena said. “This posthumous dedication in his honor is a well-deserved tribute to his enduring legacy.”
Town Councilwoman Veronica Lurvey said she first met Falcone through his involvement with the Kiwanis Club, the American Legion Post and North Hempstead’s Veterans Advisory Committee.
“Matt Falcone was a dedicated community member who served our country and community faithfully his entire life,” she said. “He loved his friends, his fellow veterans and his county. Most of all, he loved and was so proud of his family. We miss him and we are privileged to honor him in this way.”
The bridge bearing Falcone’s name spans the Northern State Parkway in North Hills, carrying Shelter Rock Road.