Local Long Islander Decorates Home For Father

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Charles McLaughlin’s handmade wooden decorations grace the front yard at 35 Marion St. in Farmingdale.     —Photos By Daniel Offner
Charles McLaughlin’s handmade wooden decorations grace the front yard at 35 Marion St. in Farmingdale.             —Photos By Daniel Offner

Each year, around Christmastime, Charles McLaughlin of Farmingdale would decorate his home at 35 Marion St. with lights, wreaths and homemade decorations.

But, last year, when he was too weak to set them up, his son Robert McLaughlin picked up the reigns to light up the house. On Jan. 31, 2014, Charles McLaughlin passed away after a hard-fought battle with cancer. In his honor, his son Robert, 45, said he will continue to put up the holiday decorations as a tribute to his father.

“It’s good to keep with the tradition, by doing this in his memory,” Robert said. “He always liked to decorate the house around the holidays.”

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Robert McLaughlin decorated his home with several wooden decorations in memory of his father Charles.

In addition to setting up the usual LED lights, bows and wreaths, Robert scattered his father’s handmade wooden decorations—including candy canes, a sleigh, reindeer and polar bears—around the lawn.

“Anything that he made, he had a close attachment to,” Robert said.

However, his favorite holiday decoration was not one of his own. According to Robert, his father’s favorite thing was a light up lobster that he purchased at a local garage sale. “I have never seen one like it in my life,” Robert laughed. “It’s definitely interesting.”

A festive red lobster lights up the front yard.
A festive red lobster lights up the front yard.

Robert said he also wanted to put up the decorations because this is his mother Patricia’s first holiday season without Charles. Taking roughly two days to finish decorating, Robert said he plans to do the same thing next holiday season.

“Every year I want to try and make this a little bit bigger for him,” Robert said.

The McLaughlin residence, at 35 Marion St. in Farmingdale, will be kept lit, from 5-9 p.m., now through New Years Eve.

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