By Ed SALVAS
Dorothy Argyros, a Neptune resident and activist for social justice, died May 4, days after her 95th birthday at her daughter’s home in Needham, Mass. where she had lived for the last four months of her life.
Argyros had lived in the same house on Tenth Avenue in Neptune for more than 40 years and during that time became known for her work on behalf of the less fortunate, “an activist for social justice to make the world a fairer and kinder place,” recalled her daughter Ellen Argyros.
Among her mother’s accomplishments was receiving her law degree from Rutgers Law School in 1980 at age 50 with the help of a scholarship from the Monmouth County Bar Association. She was also a self-taught artist with an interest in painting nudes.
Dorothy was encouraged to become an activist by her parents who promoted the idea of developing a social conscience. One of her early successful campaigns resulted from her hiring of a geologist to trace the odor of gasoline to a nearby EXXON station in Neptune which was ultimately shut down. She also exposed the discovery of lead in the ground at the Bradley Park School playground and fought for several years for its removal. As an activist for the homeless, she spent a night in jail in Washington, D.C. while attending a rally. She also was a founder of Lunch Break, the food and social services resource center.
Her daughter says there will be a celebration of her mother’s life at a later time in the Neptune area for her many friends to share their memories of her.