BEHAN COURT, New Dorp

A couple of streets in New Dorp may show the influence of Irish immigrants: Belfast Avenue and Behan Court, and L-shaped lane between Amboy Road and Beach Avenue. Brendan Behan (pronounced BAY-an, 1923-1964; shown here with Jackie Gleason) was a poet, writer, novelist, playwright, and Irish Republican Army supporter. Behan was not from Belfast but from Dublin, however. He spent time in Hollesley Bay Borstal, Suffolk, England (a youth detention center), inspiring his 1958 autobiography, Borstal Boy. He was fluent in Irish and composed several plays in that language. Unfortunately his alcoholism claimed his life at the young age of 41.

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