Tag Archives: Jashawn Parker

A Headstone for Jashawn Parker

2 Apr

A memorial poster for Jashawn Parker (Photo: Jacqueline Vergara)

Those of you who read “The Phantom Landord” investigation in City Limits know that Jashawn Parker is the boy who died in an electrical fire in his family’s apartment on DeKalb Avenue in Norwood in 2002. As I wrote in one article for the package, Paul Parker, Jashawn’s dad, took a little while to find the gravesite in the cemetery when we drove him up there, because it is not marked with a headstone. The family couldn’t afford it.

The Bronx Jewish Community Council, which helped advocate for tenants early on in their battle at 3569 DeKalb, has graciously agreed to set up a fund to raise the money for a headstone, which will be about $1,200. To donate, you can make a check out to Bronx Jewish Community Council (just write “Jashawn Parker” in the memo line) and mail to: Sally Dunford, Bronx Jewish Community Council, 3176 Bainbridge Avenue, Bronx, NY 10467. Donations are tax deductible.

If enough money is raised, a headstone can be put in place by the 10th anniversary of Jashawn’s death on Aug. 6. Thanks for whatever you can do.

Here’s a link to a terrific video interview with Paul Parker about his son. It was produced by Jacqueline Vergara, one of the excellent CUNY Graudate School of Journalism students who were involved in the investigation.

—Jordan Moss

Housing Issues Raised in City Limits the Focus of ‘Inside City Hall’ Tonight

23 Mar

Norwood News coverage of the death of Jashawn Parker, 8, in his DeKalb Ave. building in 2002, and other reporting related to the property's owners, led to the investigation in the current issue of City Limits magazine.

The housing issues raised in the current edition of City Limits, which I worked on with veteran investigative reporter Tom Robbins and his class at the CUNY Graduate School of Journalism, will be discussed on Inside City Hall tonight. Robbins, along with former HPD official Harold Shultz and two students will appear on the show, which airs at 7 p.m. and is repeated at 10 p.m.

The package of stories stemmed from a series of articles that ran in the Norwood News beginning in 2002, while I was editor, when eight-year-old Jashawn Parker died in an electrical fire in his building on DeKalb Avenue. The tenants there had been in housing court for two years trying to get an outside administrator appointed because of dangerous conditions in the building. But that didn’t happen until after Jashawn died.

The investigation explores how the man most associated with 3569 DeKalb and dozens of other problem-plagued Bronx buildings,  Frank Palazzolo, managed to escape scrutiny or punishment.

The story about the fire can be read here, and click here for links to the entire investigation.

I’m pleased that the project has begun to spur discussion about how the city, along with Housing Court, and banks who too often make loans without looking, can reform the system so that preventative action can be taken against landlords who let their properties disintegrate into danger zones.

If you watch the show on NY1 tonight, and you have any thoughts, please comment here. Thanks!

-Jordan Moss