Mayor Beame made New York City’s love affair with Darlene and Jerry Jenkins official yesterday with a City Hall ceremony honoring the Vermont couple whose honeymoon almost turned into a nightmare.
Their introduction to New York last Monday was a man ordering Mrs. Jenkins out of their car at gunpoint. The gunman later drove the car along a West 42nd Street sidewalk, killing one and injuring 14 others before wrecking the car by driving into a fire hydrant.
“New York is normally a very warm town and we’re sorry it happened,” said Mr. Beame, who gave the couple a silver plate embossed with the city’s seal.
Since Monday, the shy couple has been almost overwhelmed by New Yorker’s generosity: The Daily News arranged for them to stay at The New York Hilton, eat at Windows of the World and see the Broadway show “I love My Wife.” Last night they got a doberman pinscher and a full set of china. On Sunday they are going to the Jets game.
“I think some of the people are very rude but I love this city, it’s beautiful,” said Mrs. Jenkins. “I was surprised because in Vermont you just don’t steal a car if someone is sitting in it.”
“In Vermont you wait until everyone’s asleep. Then you usually just take the CB radio,” said the husband.
“I want to go back to Vermont where all the quiet people are,” said Mr. Jenkins. “I want to go back to Burlington and look at three feet of shnow instead of cameras.”
The body of the 70 year old lay unclaimed and headed for potter’s field.
excerpt from Charles Kaiser NYT 12/9/77