William (Bill) Doherty was born May 1, 1950 in Russianside, Cheekpoint, Co. Waterford, Ireland, the son of fisherman/seaman Andrew and his wife, Nancy Doherty. He was raised in a small cottage with his four sisters, Elizabeth, Agnes, Brigid, and Ann. In his younger years, he lived near the River Suir and worked on the salmon and herring fishing boats which plied their trade in small fishing villages along the Suir Estuary.
Bill was 17 when he met his future wife, Teresa, while working the ferryboat at Great Island, Waterford. During their years of courting, it wasn’t unusual for Bill to walk five miles to meet Teresa at the neighboring village of Ballygunner. They were married on March 18, 1972 at St John’s Church, Parnell Street, Waterford City.
After working the summer of 1972 in Dingle, Co. Kerry, Bill and his new bride made the life-altering decision to emigrate at 22 years of age to Long island, New York. Bill and Teresa were sponsored by his sister, Brigid. Bill and Teresa lived initially in Lindenhurst, with the Winters Family, before moving to Saint James, where their son, Ryan, was born in 1974. They settled in Glen Cove in 1977, to be closer to Bill’s job, at Ever-Ready Sanitation.
Around that time, Bill became a parishioner of St Patrick’s, Glen Cove, where he met other AOH members, such as Mike Moran, and became a member of Division 8. In 1979, Bill and Teresa’s daughter, Tara Ann was born. Bill was then employed by Daniello and Son in Locust Valley. In 1983, Andrew John was born and for the next decade Bill raised his growing family in Glen Cove, often sending the kids to Ireland for the summers so that he could work hard, sometimes at 3 jobs, 7 days a week.
In 1989, Bill and other Hibernians formed a small committee to start a St Patrick’s Day Parade in Glen Cove. The parade is now celebrating its 30th Anniversary as the only Hibernian sponsored parade in Nassau County, growing over the years to become the premier celebration of Irish heritage and culture on the North Shore.
In 1990, Bill and his family, realizing their “American Dream” bought their own home and moved to Bayville. During his many years of working and living on the North Shore, Bill was always willing to lend a hand at AOH events such as the Project Children Cruise and the Coney Island Great Irish Fair. Bill was always willing to help young Irish immigrants looking for work. Bill served as AOH Division 8 President from 1990 to 1992.
In February, 2005, Bill and Teresa made the decision to return “home” to run the world-famous Saratoga Bar on the scenic strand of Woodstown, Co. Waterford, made famous by a visit from the Kennedy Family in the 1960’s. Bill the Publican, a natural behind the bar, worked hard at building up the bar’s tourist trade and local customer base. He enjoyed his eleven years managing the bar along with his sidekick, Teresa, behind the stick. He treated everyone entering his premise with warm courtesy and respect.
In 2016, a major flood nearly destroyed the pub but it was rebuilt better than ever. With the passing of some family members and the ever-growing grandchild count, Bill and Teresa made the choice to return once more to the Gold Coast to enjoy semi-retirement and the fruits of their labor. Lucky for us! Life came full circle; Bill now works part-time with his nephews at Winter Bros Waste Systems, one of the largest private sanitation companies on Long Island.
Bill is truly honored to be chosen as Grand Marshal of the 2018 Glen Cove St Patrick’s Day Parade and he is humbled to be considered amongst the elite group of twenty-nine illustrious people who have been given this special honor over the past three decades. His selection as Grand Marshal is a celebration of what an immigrant with a hard work ethic and love for both Ireland and America can accomplish over a life well lived.
Bill wishes to thank the Parade Committee for its hard work and dedication to keeping the Parade running and growing. It is truly fitting on this milestone anniversary year that the parade pays tribute to one of its founders on the same day that Bill and Teresa celebrate their 46th Wedding Anniversary! The Doherty’s, their three children and seven grandchildren will lead the parade with well-deserved pride.