Ocean City Turned Out to Help Exchange Club Honor Tom Oves

first_imgThe 2016 & 2017 Book of Deeds Recipients, Harry Vanderslice and Tom Oves, JR. share a few laughs at the end of the evening. Ocean City Exchange Club President Frank Faverzani, left, presented Thomas Oves Jr. the Book of Golden Deeds Award earlier this year. A large “who’s who” crowd of Ocean City residents and friends turned out Monday night to recognize Thomas R. Oves, Jr.A teacher, Board of Education member, coach, and entrepreneur received the Exchange Club of Ocean City’s 52nd Annual Chapter of its “Book of Golden Deeds. The award, one of the oldest and most prestigious honors to be bestowed in Ocean City, was the highlight of a dinner held at the Flanders Hotel.In the case of Oves’ the Golden Deeds chapter reads more like a book in its own right.Jon Batastini, an Exchange Club Book of Deeds Committee Member, friend of Tom Oves, and the Master of Ceremonies for the evening.The evening’s events included many heartfelt speeches and laughs as well, befitting the man. Jerry Kanefsky, the Exchange Club President Elect, welcomed the crowd, and Oves’ friend Jon Batastini gave an overview of the Book of Golden Deeds and acted as the master of ceremonies.Don Pileggi, the 1971 Book of Golden Deeds chapter subject, led the pledge of allegiance and Richard Stanislaw another recipient (2014) gave the invocation. John LaRosa explained the award and set the stage for a parade of friends and community leaders.James Plousis read a proclamation from Governor Christie, Sue Sheppard had words of wisdom and recognition from Congressman Frank LoBiondo, and presentations were made by Senator Jeff Van Drew, Assemblyman Bruce Land and Bob Andrzejczak, Cape May County Freeholder Marie Hayes, and Cape May County Freeholder Brigadier General Jeff Pierson.Also, Mayor Jay Gillian, Council member Anthony Wilson made presentations, as did friends Charles Bowman, Greg Young, and Tom Lukens.City Council President Pete Madden spoke on behalf of all of the Council. Additionally, Tony Wilson shared some emotional praise for his dear friend. When Tony was critically injured in a construction related accident, Tom told him “Stay strong because that is what your children will remember about you”. Tony indicated that, in some difficult times, the advice has served him well.Exchange Club President Frank Faverzani made the actual presentation, followed by a heartfelt speech by Tom Oves.For those who do not know Tom, he is amazing man that does a tremendous amount for others. From running his iconic boardwalk eatery, to coaching and administering the Ocean City Junior Wrestling Club and its tournament which draws youth wrestlers from all over South Jersey and surrounding states. He even coached Ocean City Little League for several years.Greg Young spoke of Tom’s dedication to the wrestling program. He gave numerous examples of Tom’s boundless capacities to be there for others. He closed by saying “when Ocean City calls, Tom Oves answers”.Oves might be best known for his many years as an educator and supporter of education. An eight-year member of the Ocean City Board of Education, which he also served for four years as Vice President, he is as familiar as the firmament around Ocean City Schools. He chairs the Building and Grounds Committee, presiding over some of the top school and athletic facilities in the region. He also served on the Strategic Planning and Hall of Fame Committees.Ocean City born and raised, Oves’ dedication to education began in 1987 at Wildwood High where he taught and coached Freshman Boys Basketball. He went on to Atlantic City Middle School and the High School, teaching in that system until 2007. He coached the Vikings’ traveling chess team during that period.You could hear a pin drop during Tom’s acceptance speech. He shared personal insight into some of his biggest challenges and cherished victories. It was truly captivating and inspiring.Tom’s many accomplishments are that much more remarkable considering the challenges he has endured and overcome throughout his life –including over 60 operations, 30 years of dialysis treatments, 4 kidney transplants, a collapsed lung, fluid on his heart, bouts with cancer, and the loss of a leg at the knee due to circulation problems.Tom, and his wife Mary (his “rock”) have three boys – twins Dustin and John, and Tommy. During the summer season, he works with his brothers Alex and Chris at the family restaurant, bike rental and umbrella rental emporium at 4th and the Boardwalk.The evening closed with a lot of laughs, hugs, and pictures with family and friends. It was a memorable and inspiring evening for all that attended.Left to right: Tom’s Wife Mary Oves, Mother Anne Oves, Son Dustin Oves, Tom Oves, JR., Sons Tommy, and John Oves, Brothers Chris, Danny (in the front), and Alex Oves, Father Tom Oves, SR.,, Sister-in-Law Tobi Oveslast_img read more