Elderly Long Islanders looking for love may have found it in time for Valentine’s Day | NY POST By Jon Levine and Stephen Yang


They are lonely hearts no more.

Two Long Island seniors looking for love this Valentine’s season took the plunge Saturday and went on the first of what they hope will be many dates — and wasted no time locking lips.

Barbara LeVien, 75, and Joe Santomero, 91, chatted over pot roast and mashed potatoes for about two hours at the The Milleridge Inn in Jericho, NY. For dessert there was vanilla ice cream — and a quick smooch.

“We’ll be making love tonight,” Santomero joked.

LeVien said the date was “very pleasant” and called Santomero a “sweetheart.”

“This is the first time I have done anything like this and I have to say it was a great experience,” she said.

A second date is already in the works for Valentine’s Day on Monday.

Santomero, a marine and Korean War Vet, ex-real estate broker and tennis pro, got right to the nitty-gritty, telling The Post before the date that he was looking for “sex” — and “somebody to hold hands with,” during jaunts to Atlantic City.

“At my age, there’s not much more to ask for,” he laughed.

Santomero has been single for “30 or 40 years” after his 22-year-marriage ended in divorce in 1978.

He’s is still sharp as a tack and remains a Bridge Bronze Life Master. He also teaches the game at the local senior center where one of his students is the 105-year-old Eugene Goodman — brother of King of Swing Jazz musician Benny Goodman.

“I feel great. No pains or anything. I am active. I can walk without any assistance. When I go out I carry a cane just for security,” Santomero said, saying he would be open to marrying again if the right woman came along.

LeVien was married for 40 years to Douglas A. LeVien Jr. — a celebrated mob-busting NYPD detective, — who died suddenly of a heart attack in 2015. She said she was ready for love again.

“I would like to meet someone who has been fairly successful, who is a family man, respectful and educated,” she said.

LeVien, a longtime teacher in Brooklyn, said she retired last year and was looking for someone to hit the town with.

“I am a people person. If you go on Facebook, you see I have a wide range of friends. I am out all the time,” LeVien said.

The pair were set up by Long Island matchmaker extraordinaire Maureen Tara Nelson.

“I’ve been matchmaking for over 21 years,” Nelson boasted. “I knew it was my calling,” Nelson said.

The lunch was provided in full by The Milleridge Inn, which also supplied transportation for both LeVien and Santomero. The restaurant also picked up a salon treatment for LeVien — and a dashing new haircut for Santomero.

Owner Butch Yamali said he was happy to do it.

“We thought it would be great. You see a lot of older people doing this now,” said Yamali. “It makes me happy that I can provide it and it makes me smile, especially around Valentine’s Day.”


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