I was born and raised in Yonkers, NY. Played Little League baseball on my father’s team. My dad was a ball player, and as a lefty, was scouted by the Yankees in 1951 – and he recalled telling me of his tryouts in Yankee Stadium (the original one), while Mickey Mantle and Joe DiMaggio were also practicing in the outfield. It was the only year those two played on the same team together. He’s an artist (fine art) and some of his sports artwork hangs in that sports’ respective Hall of Fame. I even find some of his mass-produced stuff on Ebay (look for Ray Caram) from when he did work for Avon, Seagrams 7 and Kinney Shoes. Pretty much had the typical upbringing of the 70′s and 80′s… Love the music compared to what’s out now(some exceptions). Got totally engulfed by the syndication of Star Trek and game shows at the time – so yeah, I’m a big fan of that stuff too…then came Jaws, Star Wars, E.T., Cheers… Got to meet the cast of Star Trek – Voyager in 1995 with my cousin Scott – who was donating a signed piece of artwork of one of the actors in character to a charity. To our surprise, the whole cast was there for their 3rd season promotional photo…and they were all really great!! Turns out Scott knew Garrett Wang pretty well and he never told me…
Started getting into hockey since I was a kid, but started out as a goalie. My brother used to practice at the Westchester Ice Skating Center in Elmsford, NY – right before or after the NY Rangers would(before the moved to Rye Playland). I got disappointed when the Rangers lost to the Canadiens in the 1979 Cup Finals, but my enjoyment for hockey remained intact, and was fueled months later at the Olympics when the US defeated the highly favored Russians in the “Miracle on Ice” game, Feb 22, 1980 at Lake Placid.
I’ve been on ice skates since I could walk, and I love hockey. I’ve played 19 years of organized hockey of every kind (ice, floor, roller, deck) and even refereed Roller Hockey in Danbury for 4 seasons (1998-2002). I’ve been a NY Rangers fan ever since they were on channel 9 in NY. Met Ron Greschner as well as some of the players of the 1984 team (Eddie Mio, Ron Duguay, Pierre Larouche, Nick Fotiu, Don Maloney, Phil Esposito) at a golf outing at Wykagyl Country Club in New Rochelle, NY.
At 23 years, 365 days, I was the third-youngest to ever graduate Palmer Chiropractic College – West (I turned 24 the next day). I was ‘chiropractically’ mentored by my late uncle, Dr. Alfred Caram, who practiced in Yonkers NY for 24 years before moving to San Jose CA, and then to Turlock, CA.
While there, in addition to starting a new practice, “Uncle Al” became an instructor and clinician at the Palmer-West Campus. I had the privilege of learning a few things under him which made the experience a bit more special. After graduating in March 1990, I headed back east to practice in Connecticut. People have always asked me why I left sunny California and moved to Connecticut – seems like a no-brainer to stay, right?
Well, on October 17, 1989, I survived what’s now known as the Loma Prieta earthquake (Bay Area Earthquake, or “World Series” Earthquake), and when you watch everything you own shake THAT vigorously, including the ground you’re standing on, its enough to make you reconsider how much unpredictability you want in life… but it wasn’t just the 7.1 quake of that day, but the continuous, daily aftershocks that rumbled for at least 3 months that made nights very difficult… so I’ll settle for nor’easters instead…at least they’re predictable. After passing licensing exams for the states of California, Connecticut and New York, I started as an associate of Advanced Back & Neck Center in Milford in February, 1991. After 2 1/2 years there, the opportunity arose in Bethel, CT to work at Associated Rehab Centers – a full office and gym facility geared toward the rehabilitation of injuries caused by car accidents, sports injuries and on-the-job incidents. Unfortunately, that facility only lasted a year, and I shortly was faced with either not having a job or trying to make it on my own…I chose option #2! So, in November 1994, I opened independently at the same(and current) location at 182 Grassy Plain Street in Bethel. My existing solo practice is an extension of Associated Rehab Centers, and is still located at 182 Grassy Plain Street. In addition to the main office in Bethel, I had always kept a satellite office, but with different locations from 1994 thru 2005 – most of which were in the shared office of Dr. Joseph Bartko – my colleague from the Associated Rehab days. The satellite office moved from Rye NY, to Greenwich CT, to Stamford CT, and in 2000, to Harrison, NY. This last move turned out to be a pivotal move in the history of that little satellite office…it was evacuated on September 11, 2001, along with the buildings near it on Mamaroneck Ave. considering those buildings were a target of terrorist attacks in the early 1980′s. The Harrison office proved to be crucial in the decision of mine to work down at Ground Zero for 8 months after the attack. I would leave that NY office after work every Tuesday at 6PM and drive to St. Paul’s Chapel on the northeast corner of the site where I would treat any worker, clergy, cop or fireman there from 8PM until 2AM. (Read It was shortly after that experience that I married my wife Rachel in September of 2002, but sadly my “chiropractic uncle” passed away 2 months prior. Rachel and I currently have two sons, Joseph, 7 and Samuel, 3 1/2.
I was a member and 3-time past president of the Bethel Jaycees as well as A.F.&A.M. (Ark #39 – Bethel, CT), so I enjoy giving back to the community. I enjoy Bethel’s atmosphere as well as the people in the area…and no, I have no regrets about leaving California when I did, except for leaving family behind. In March of this coming year will mark 24 years in practice…and yeah, time really DOES fly!