For Ed Segall, the 85-year-old patriot who owns the Hurricane Sandy-torn Sea Gulls' Nest on Sandy Hook, it feels like an end has come, he tells the New York Times.
For a solid 25 years, Segall, a war vet, has owned and operated the casual concession-type restaurant that overlooks the ocean from high atop a balcony.
Every single night, for all of those years, Segall has taken pause as he has led a patriotic sunset ceremony that has become a well-known and respected tradition in the area.
The silver-haired man, the product of a modest upbringing, would take the mic as sunset fell and speak to his patrons about his love of the country and respect for those who have died and continue to fight in its service.
He'd top it off by leading the group in a rendition of "God Bless America" and then quietly slip away with the setting of the sun and the end of the song.
Segall's tradition cannot be embraced this summer, as the restaurant was too heavily damaged by the storm. Mired in beaurocratic limbo, Segall is uncertain of the future of not only the tradition, but what built there for his family.