'Yonkers Leprechaun' House Shines Bright In Tribute

  • Comments (3)
Friends and family pitched in to decorate the home of the late Jesse Buzzutto of Yonkers as he did for many years. Photo Credit: Matt Bultman
The home of the late Jesse Buzzutto at Nepperhan and Roberts avenues in Yonkers is lighted again for the holidays. Photo Credit: Matt Bultman

YONKERS, N.Y. – Those who knew the late “Yonkers Leprechaun” are honoring his legacy by bringing some familiar holiday cheer to the city.

Family members and neighbors have pitched in to decorate Jesse Buzzutto’s home at Nepperhan and Roberts avenues with elaborate Christmas decorations, just as the green-clad gardener had done for so many years.

“I said to my daughter, 'This is kind of sad,' ” said Buzzutto’s sister, Eileen Logiudice. “She said to me, ‘This may be sad for us, but Jess is sure smiling down on us. He’s loving his lights.' ”

Buzzutto, the man known affectionately by many as the “Yonkers Leprechaun” because of the green clothing that adorned his 5-foot frame, died in September of congestive heart failure.

Friends and family remembered Buzzutto for many things, including his over-the-top Christmas decorations that were among the most elaborate in the city.  Dozens of snowmen, "Nutcracker" characters and Santa Claus statues lined his front yard, along with a light and music display that friends say was second to none.

“The Boston Symphony Orchestra isn’t as well tended to as his lights,” said neighbor Kathy Zatkovich.

Initially, Logiudice did not plan to undertake the monumental task that is decorating Buzzutto’s house. But after some prodding from friends and neighbors, Logiudice and her family decided to give it a try.

As it turned out, Buzzutto had made it easier for them, leaving detailed drawings of exactly where each decoration was to be placed. So for the past three weekends family and friends have been placing the elaborate ornaments around the house just as Buzzutto did.

And on Thanksgiving Day, the family members celebrated as they had for so many years before – by lighting the decorations.

“We lit them exactly at the time he did, and we looked on as family like we always did,” Logiudice said. “It was wonderful.”

On Saturday, family members and neighbors will be back to work in Buzzutto's front yard, putting the finishing touches on the decorations. For them, it will be a fitting way to pay tribute to the man they loved so dearly.

“It’s not Christmas without seeing his house lit up,” said 21-year-old Stephanie Zatkovich, who along with her brother, Matt, helped Buzzutto decorate his house for more than a decade.

“And seeing it, it reminds me how great it was knowing him.”

  • 3
    Comments

Comments (3)

tommy.meehan.77:

It was very nice and very touching to see the ornaments go up. He was a very nice man and it's good to know that at least this year his tradition goes on.

Gabagoo924:

I was so happy to see the house lit up again. what a fitting tribute to the man who gave us so much joy and beautified what would have been an otherwise dull corner.

Thank you to his family & friends who continued the tradition!

emjay914:

I am so sad to hear that Jesse died. I moved away this year and miss seeing the house decorated for every season. I always thought that a calendar with a photo for each month would have been fun. Christmas was very special -- but remember St Pat's, July 4th and all the summer flowers? RIP and my condolences to his family.

In Other News

News

Dozens Of Dead Cats Found In Bags Hanging From Trees In Yonkers

News

WCC Student Center Ceiling Collapse Results In One Injury

Pace, Hitachi America To Host Panel On Funding Sources

Events

Veterans To Participate In Special Yonkers Horse Race

News

Yonkers Family Suspects Foul Play In 2-Year-Old's Death