Marsh Memories: Paulette Ramsey

1-IMG_0194-1 Five years ago, as part of the N.J. Meadowlands Commission’s Oral History Project, we interviewed lots of folks about the region in the old days. We are going to reprint the best of them here, every Tuesday, for 11 weeks. This week:  Paulette (DeKorte) Ramsey.

In this audio interview, Paulette Ramsey talks about the contributions to the Meadowlands and foresight of her late husband, Richard W. DeKorte.

As a state assemblyman in the late 1960s, DeKorte was instrumental in crafting the legislation that created the New Jersey Meadowlands Commission.

He also laid out the foundation for the region’s environmental restoration and economic development over the past four decades.

A plaque in his honor hangs in the lobby of the NJMC Administration Building in DeKorte Park.

A Franklin Lakes resident, DeKorte was a well-respected Richard DeKortelegislator and former head of the state energy office who many thought would become governor someday.

DeKorte died of cancer at age 38 in 1975. DeKorte Park, the home of the NJMC, is  named in his honor.

Click “Continue reading …” below to hear the interviews with Paulette Ramsey and to see some archival photos.

Paulette discusses Richard DeKorte’s concern about development in North Jersey and the future of the Meadowlands.

In the following audio clips, Paulette talks about Richard DeKorte and his colleagues’ vision for the Meadowlands:

In the following clip, Paulette recalls attending the DeKorte Park groundbreaking in 1981:

In the following clips, Paulette talks about Richard DeKorte’s legacy as a legislator:

1-ridgewood news story

In this 1973 interview with the Ridgewood News, Richard DeKorte (above, left) discussed his concerns about preserving open space in Bergen County in the wake of impending development. “Bergen County should secure as much public land as it can,” DeKorte said. The interview was reprinted in the March 20, 1975 edition, following his death. Photo courtesy of Paulette Ramsey.

1-IMG_0198-001Gov. Brendan Byrne and Senator Bill Bradley (both holding shovel) and other state officials at the DeKorte Park groundbreaking in Lyndhurst in 1981. Photo courtesy of NJMC.

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