Corporal Allan F. Kivlehan Park (New Dorp Beach Park), Staten Island NY

Posted by Anthony Licciardello on Wednesday, June 20th, 2012 at 1:06pm.

Corporal Allan F. Kivlehan Park is located in the neighborhood of New Dorp. This park is bordered by the streets of New Dorp Lane to the north, and Cedar Grove Avenue to the west. It is also bordered by the Lower New York Bay to 
the east, and by Cedar Grove Beach to the south.

Prior to being a park, this land used to hold bungalows for vacationers and residents of Staten Island. The New York City Department of Parks and Recreation obtained the land for this park in 1962 and it became known as New Dorp Beach Park. The New York City Department of Parks and Recreation had also obtained Cedar Grove Beach and Oakwood Beach at that time.

After the New York City Department of Parks and Recreation took over the land they removed all the houses that were there and the land turned into woodlands beside the beach.

In 2006, the New York City Department of Parks and Recreation started to transform this woodland park into a nice place for the community. They created new and fixed-up
 old paths, sidewalks, and the gravel parking lot. They added benches, water fountains, a decorative spray shower, and the John D'Amato soccer/football field. The park was completed and reopened on September 23rd, 2011. When it was reopened, the New York City Department of Parks and Recreation changed the name of the park to Corporal Allan F. Kivlehan Park.

Corporal Allan F. Kivlehan grew up in New Dorp on Maple Terrace, which is across from where the park is now located. After having graduated from high school, Allan Kivlehan joined the United States Army. During the Korean War, he served in the Headquarters Company, 3rd Battalion, 34th Infantry Regiment, and 24th Infantry Division. While serving in Southern Japan, his truck convoy was ambushed and they were captured in July of 1950. On November 1st of that 
same year, the prisoners had to march from Manpo, North Korea to Chunggang, North Korea, which became known as the Tiger Death March. During the march, Corporal Allan F. Kivlehan was shot to death. He was one of the first Staten Islanders to die during the Korean War.

The soccer/football field in this park was named in honor of John D'Amato. John D'Amato was a Staten Island attorney and athlete, and was also involved with the community. He grew up in New Dorp and attended Monsignor Farrell High School, where he became a star athlete. He was one of the best linebackers on Staten Island. After high school, he attended Ohio State University, where he played in the Rose Bowl with the Buckeyes in 1975. After his freshman year at Ohio State University, he transferred to the University of Massachusetts for his remaining three years of college. While at the University of Massachusetts he continued to play football with the Minutemen. In 1977 and 1978, he was given the All Yankee Conference Honors of the Defensive End.

After graduating college in 1978, John D'Amato began practicing law at a Staten Island law firm and became a partner of the company. In 2003, John D'Amato was inducted into the Staten Island Sports Hall of Fame for his football skills. On April 28th, 2011 New Dorp High School opened their John D'Amato Center for Law and Business. This center serves the students in the New Dorp Law, History, and Human Rights Institute and the students in the New Dorp Business and Technology Institute as a mock courtroom and a conference center.

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