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Sunnyside leaders co-name 40th/Queens Blvd “‘Lillian ‘Lily’ Gavin Place”

40th and Queens Blvd., adjacent to her restaurant Dazies

Oct. 23, 2017 By Christian Murray

About 150 people turned out Saturday for the co-naming of 40th Street/Queens Blvd to Lillian ‘Lily’ Gavin Place, in honor of the late owner of Dazies and long-time Sunnyside community leader.

Gavin, who passed away in July 2016 at the age of 85, opened Dazies Restaurant at 39-41 Queens Blvd in the early 1970s and then became heavily involved in the Sunnyside community.

“Lily Gavin was a Sunnyside icon who touched the lives of virtually every person in this neighborhood,” Councilman Jimmy Van Bramer said at the unveiling. “For over four decades, she served this community selflessly, championing its businesses and its people.”

Other elected leaders such as by Queens Borough President Melinda Katz, State Senator Mike Gianaris, Assemblywoman Cathy Nolan and Assemblyman Brian Barnwell also spoke.

Gavin served as president of the Sunnyside Chamber of Commerce, where her accomplishments included helping to raise $450,000 for a much-needed revamp of the Sunnyside Arch.

Gavin was also heavily involved in neighborhood organizations, including the Sunnyside Drum Corps, Sunnyside Shines, Long Island City YMCA and Sunnyside Community Services, and frequently appeared as a central figure in the annual Kiwanis Flag Day parade.  Gavin also served as an honorary director of the LaGuardia Community College Foundation.

“By renaming the street adjacent to Dazies in Lily’s honor, we are forever recognizing all that she accomplished for this neighborhood and her status as an iconic Sunnysider.”

Long-time friend Joe Conley speaking

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Al from Sunnyside aka: OJJ Tour Manager

Lily had the best Shepard’s Pie. Oran Juice Jones took 50 frozen ones on his cross country tour circa 1979. El Loco was the Executive Chef there and had to pull an all night based on Lily’s order to load up OJJ’s tour bus with those famous Shepards Pies. She will always be in OJJ’s thoughts.


Lily was the nicest lady I ever met. She treated everyone the same, just like her own. She is missed , the neighborhood is not the same without her. She was a true icon in this area The sign will always be a reminder so this is really a well deserved honor


A fine woman with great ability. She shepherded Sunnyside through many years when no one knew our name. She made us proud to be ourselves when we were just a small town outside the big city. Her like is gone from these blocks now.

Sunnyside Martial Arts Dojo

On behalf of the Sunnyside Karate’ DoJo we will be naming our next competition after Lily for all the support she has given over the many years. It will be the first annual Lily Martial Arts Extravaganza. Planning on having it sometime in January. Going to set up some outdoor rings under the L across from Dazies. Sincerely, Sensei Oran juice Jones

John Creese

Fear does not exist in this dojo, does it?

Pain does not exist in this dojo, does it?
Class: NO, SENSEI!

Defeat does not exist in this dojo, does it?

El Loco Top Chef circa 1980

Lily had the best Calamari. El Loco knew exactly how to spice it up when he worked that kitchen in the 80’s. Those were the days my friends.

Great Tribute

Beautiful tribute to a great lady. She Quietly helped many people in the community get ahead. Lily even funded El Loco (who was a long time chef at Dazies) on his trip through Asia while he was competing in the Underground Fight Club. He left in the fall of 81 and she slipped a few Benjamin’s into the pocket of his Members Only jacket. He was representing the Sunnyside Dojo that was located at the time in the basement of the Metroplitan Housing Projects on 48 Street. Oran Juice Jones sang the National Anthem at this event. The only one that took a knee was Al from Sunnyside.


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