Salvatore Taddeo Jr. was formed by the uniquely American history of the borough of Brooklyn, New York. Green-Wood Cemetery, a burial ground today for many New York citizens of note, is on the heights where the fierce fighting of the Continental defenders took place in the first major battle of the Revolutionary War, as is Prospect Park, today a public park.
Today, a mature Salvatore Taddeo Jr. can attend the professional games of the Brooklyn Nets and the New York Islanders, and as a youngster might have run into sports legends who had resided in Brooklyn, men like Joe Paterno, Vince Lombardi, Mike Tyson, Joe Torre and Vitas Gerulaitis. The first fastball, first changeup, first batting average, first triple play, first pro baseball player, first enclosed ballpark, first scorecard, first known African-American team, first black championship game, first road trip, first gambling scandal, and first eight pennant winners of baseball were all in or from Brooklyn. The legendary Brooklyn Dodgers hired the first African American player in Major League Baseball and won the National League Pennant against the Yankees in 1955. The combined history, neighborhood cohesiveness, Catholic school discipline and family values of his Italian heritage gave Salvatore Taddeo Jr. an upbringing to be envied among those not so fortunate to have been born in Brooklyn.
Brooklyn, New York has been a shipping port longer than it has been anything else. Most of those operations have switched over to the New Jersey side of the Harbor today, but now the Brooklyn Cruise Terminal at Red Hook has become a center of the cruise industry. The Queen Mary 2, designed to fit under the Verrazano-Narrows Bridge, calls Red Hook its home berth for transatlantic crossings to Southampton, England. Perhaps Salvatore Taddeo Jr. went down to the wharf to watch the big ships, or crossed to Manhattan on the iconic Brooklyn Bridge, built in 1883 and today dubbed a national Historic Civil Engineering Landmark and a National Historic Landmark.
In the rich and bustling atmosphere of Brooklyn, New York, Salvatore Taddeo Jr. took his grammar school education at the Catholic Regina Pacis Grammar School. Regina Pacis Grammar School was at 1201 66th Street in Brooklyn, before it was closed in 2015. Taddeo Jr. was then enrolled in Bishop Ford High School, a Roman Catholic high school in the Park Slope area of Brooklyn. Bishop Ford was founded in 1962 and named for Bishop Francis Xavier Ford, a Brooklyn native who died in China in 1952. A private school, its patron saint was St. Francis of Assisi. Bishop Ford Central Catholic High School closed in 2014 due to a significant loss of enrollment, and its building is used today for a pre-kindergarten school.
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