Agnes Leibner was born in Kings Park in 1926, on Carlson Avenue to Irish immigrants and like many old-time Kings Parkers; she was related to hundreds of members of the town.
Despite their grief due to her passing away Thursday, her youngest daughter Grace Leibner Costaduro and oldest grandchild, Rene Sorrentino Mcloughlin shared their sweet memories with the Patch.
The ladies said Agnes had two claims to fame in the early years; one was that she won a beauty contest at Jones Beach and became Miss Greenlawn. However, prior to that, at ten years old she climbed the water tower with her cousin Helen on Carlson Avenue and she slipped and was dangling and her father Pete Dwyer had to call the Kings Park Fire Department to get her down.
“From that day she was afraid of heights, planes, bridges, she hated heights,” said Rene.
During the Depression Agnes forged her birth certificate to say she was older so she could go and work at Grumman and help her family financially. Her mother, Grace Dwyer was the Director of Nursing at the Kings Park Psychiatric Center and like so many other Irish immigrants came to Kings Park to work. Prior to marrying Agnes also worked at the hospital in Group four with the children.
However everything changed in a soda shoppe on Main Street when Bob Leibner walked in. He had just taken the train out from Brooklyn where he was born and raised because his mother bought the Roundtable (now known as Shanahans).
“They looked at each other and it was love”, said Grace.
They were marred on November 15, 1949 and shared 62 years together. Bob bought a piece of property and built his bride a house on Avenue B which remains the family home. They raised three girls in that house and had many grandchildren and great grandchildren.
Grace said two of her fondest memories of her mother were the day she graduated the New York City Police Academy.
“She looked at me during the ceremony and I could see she was so proud,” she said. Also Grace said her mother just loved babies and was so happy when her children were born.
Rene is the oldest grandchild and grew up very close to her. Her fondest memory is quite comical. “I remember she brought me to bingo at St. Joseph’s and I was underage and won the jackpot, she made sure they gave me that jackpot,” she laughed.
The older grand kids called her Grandma and but the young ones called her Gi- Gi and was adored by all of them.
Rene and Grace said she loved bingo and walking along the boardwalk at Sunken Meadow.
“She walked it with my father every single day, rain or shine, through storms,” said Grace.
When one of her grandchildren brought her to Heritage Day at school they learned Agnes’s two favorite things were walking the boardwalk and The Wizard of Oz. Agnes was related to the Ryans, Allens, Trodden and the Dwyer family and many other families that still call Kiings Park home.
Viewing times for Leibner will be Sunday April 22 from 7-9 p.m. at in Kings Park and Monday from 2-4:30 p.m. and 7-9 p.m. Funeral mass to be held at 9:30 a.m. on Tuesday at . Internment will be at Calverton Cemetery.
Agnes’ husband Bob was WWII veteran, he served in the United States Navy on the USS Charrette and was stationed at Pearl Harbor.