Sandy, the NJ shore and rainbows

I’ve mentioned a million jillion (or maybe three or four) times how connected I feel with the Jersey Shore. My family is from a small borough called Sea Girt. My great grandfather, William H. H. Lake, was the keeper from 1917 to 1931 at the Sea Girt Lighthouse, pictured above. That’s him below standing in front of the lighthouse.


This proud descendant must boast, his son, my grandfather, Elvin “Toots” Lake, was one of six lifeguards on the beach who helped save the survivors of the Morro Castle luxury liner that caught on fire offshore in 1934. Pop Pop (Toots) is third from the left.



My mom grew up in Sea Girt with her two sisters and brother, and we returned to my grandparents’ home on Brooklyn Blvd. for so many weekends and holidays and summers that I considered the house my own. I knew every crack in the sidewalk, every flower on the wallpaper in our room, the smell of the salt air, the familiar rumble of the train on the tracks nearby. My most vivid childhood memories are of Sea Girt are of biking around the town with my cousins, of the crunch of sand in the PB and J and apple juices we brought to the beach, of climbing on the black rocks of the jetty, fishing in Spring Lake, getting splinters on the boardwalk, piles of Christmas presents under the artificial tree…


My brother and his family live in Sea Girt, as do two of my cousins and their families. Thankfully, all are well. My brother spent a fearful night with Sandy and lost power, but fortunately his home and our beloved lighthouse where he volunteers suffered only minimal damage. But most of the Sea Girt boardwalk, dotted with benches dedicated to loved ones by family members, is gone.


My cousin and her family, in the town next to Sea Girt, fared less well. Her home, as well as those of her neighbors, were flooded and her town of Manasquan faced a more brutal destruction. My cousin, Lori, is helping to organize the donation and volunteer effort to restore her hometown. You can find the SquanStrong facebook page HERE. I’m sending along some of these rainbow cookies to pass out to the volunteers.


We’ve also donated to the Red Cross, and I encourage all who are able to help victims of Sandy and help restore the hometowns of our friends and family!


Please, feel free to leave me your story if you like, if you’ve been affected by Sandy, too!



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  1. says

    What a wonderful history your family has in Sea Girt. What a shame that the boardwalk benches are gone now. I’m sorry that some of your family members were directly and seriously affected by the devastation wrought by Hurricane Sandy. Thank you for sharing this treasured history of your family with us and for the links to the FB page & Red Cross.
    Your lovely cookies will be appreciated.

  2. Kiersten says

    Your kind words and donations mean so much to me, I’m from the area and it’s devastating to see how quickly something you love so much be destroyed. Thank you so much for reaching out to help :)

  3. says

    I certainly enjoyed your story. What a beautiful lighthouse/house. What fun to have such history in your family! How sweet of you to make and send the cookies. They will bring much cheer.

  4. Courtney G. says

    I also weathered the storm. I live a few shore towns south of Sea Girt. The losses are just beyond devastating. We are 6mi in from the shore so luckily we only experienced power loss and very minor damage to our house. I am sad when I think about what our shore will look like next summer. I am certain we will all rebuild and the shore will be better then ever!

    • meaghanmountford says

      So glad you’re safe, Courtney! I thought the same thing about what the shore will feel like as the seasons change… and my cousin has the exact same spirit about rebuilding in Manasquan. I’ve yet to make it up to NJ to see firsthand, but the photographs are enough to bring tears to eyes. Thank you so much for your comment!

  5. says

    While we weren’t personally affected by the storm, we prayed for the people that were. I enjoyed reading about your family’s history in Sea sorry to hear about the boardwalk and neighboring town’s destruction. And while these folks are in the midst of their suffering, what a great way to remind them of God’s promise..Rainbow Cookies! I love ’em. :)

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