Ray Rossi loses car, cellphone and almost life to Ida
He's the original "Jersey Guy" on New Jersey 101.5 and last Wednesday Ray Rossi almost lost his life trying to drive home from his job in Newark to his home in Monroe. Thank God he's alright.
I spoke to Rossi and here's his account from his Facebook page.
"A Little Bit More and I’d Have Made it Home Nice and Dry
But I had to throw chance to the wind and try and make it through what I thought was a puddle…but instead turned out to be the running rapids of Manalapan.
It started out innocently enough. Around 7ish on the evening of the Storm of ’21, I went out to move my car to a safer place…inside the parking garage where all the company cars are stored. Rain was coming down in sheets and the wind was relentless.
By 11, when it was time to leave, the rain and wind had let up a bit – but I knew there was a daunting challenge ahead of me.
To try and find a dry street in Newark’s Ironbound. There wasn’t one to be found, so I chanced a trip down Christie St to try and access the back way onto the Turnpike. But once on the ramp, I found out like so many others why that wasn’t such a good idea.
The entrance to the Turnpike was jammed packed with cars and trucks
So I headed instead over to the Skyway and rode it all the way into Jersey City, only to hang a U-turn at the bottom of it and headed for the Turnpike Extension paying no heed to the signs marked 'Turnpike South is Closed'
In short order, I found out why. Abandoned cars littered the roadway –. and those that were being driven were going every which way. But trudge on I did soon finding out why all those cars were abandoning the Turnpike.
Exit 12 was at a complete stop! I inched along for about an hour and a half until I saw what looked like a golden – and squeezed my way in between a tractor-trailer and a dollar bus. Once off the Turnpike, I finally found my way to Routes 1&9 – and hopefully home.
Ahh…not so fast! Try though I might, I hung a right onto Texas Rd, only to find the road blocked. So I ventured down to Union Hill and was about to attempt making my way over to Rt 527, but that path was blocked as well.
So too was the intersection of Gordon’s Corner Rd and 527.
I had one more card up my sleeve, and that was to try and make it past the Englishtown Auction.
And that’s when my luck ran out! Making my way through what I thought was a puddle turned out to be a lake…and a roaring lake at that.
The CR-V finally gave out after having pushed it as hard as I could. So I made my way out of the car but the current was swift….and at one point pushed me down - practically sweeping me along with it. I shouted to God above to give me strength to get me up.
And just like that, it happened! I was able to stand on my own two feet and inch my way over to two of Manalapan’s finest.
And while this has a happy ending as I’m still alive, I’m minus one CR-V and a cellphone.
But I’m alive, and that’s all that counts.
And I picked up a valuable lesson in all of this.
Which is, when there’s a road blocked off due to high water – believe it.
Unless you’re St. Christopher, don’t cross it – ever!"
What's ironic is that same night that Ray was trying to find his way home. His old New York broadcast buddy Ricky Ricardo was rescuing Yankee broadcaster John Sterling who was stranded in Edgewater.
I asked Rossi, with whom I argue with every Thanksgiving, if when he was praying to God while under water, if he promised him that if he lived, there would be macaroni on his Thanksgiving table.
"I knew you would ask that Cuz," Rossi said. "The answer is yes, yes I will have macaroni on the Thanksgiving table."
Personally I don't think he meant it, but either way, I like you are just glad that he's going to be around which is another reason I, along with Ray and his loved ones will give thanks.
The post above reflects the thoughts and observations of New Jersey 101.5 talk show host Steve Trevelise. Any opinions expressed are Steve's own. Steve Trevelise is on New Jersey 101.5 Monday-Thursday from 7pm-11pm. Follow him on Twitter @realstevetrev.