News of Otsego County

Serving Otsego County, NY, through the combined reporting of Cooperstown's Freeman's Journal and the Hometown Oneonta newspapers.
OJCA Inducts Nine Into Community Hall Of Fame

OJCA Inducts Nine

Into Community Hall Of Fame

Oneonta Job Corps kicked off the 4th annual Community Softball game in Damaschke Field on Friday evening as OJCA Director Chis Kuhn, Bob the Bulldog and Jocelyn Plows honored Kristen Winn, FRN, Michelle Zuk, FRN,Lee and Joanne Fisher,NAACP, Sonia Shultis, Tribe Yoga, Molly Swain, community leader & activist, Lynn Bailey, YMCA, Valarie Adams, United Way, and Kimberly Lorraine, United Way, by inducting them into the OJCA Community Partnership Hall Of Fame. Many local service organizations tabled at the event and raffled off backpacks of school supplies to area youth. The came concluded with a spectacular fireworks display. (Ian Austin/
SUNY Opens Career Paths For Part-Time Faculty

SUNY Opens Career Paths

For Adjunct Faculty Members


ONEONTA – Increases in pay, access to promotions and increased job security are parts of the “significant collaboration” between SUNY Oneonta and United University Professions, the college announced this afternoon.

“Forty percent of our faculty are part-time adjuncts,” Dr. Mark Ferrara, an English professor who serves as the union’s chief negotiator.  “Giving them more job security, access to promotions and access to faculty development funds is a way of validating them for all they do for the college. It’s a big step forward.”


Explore Area Farms


FAMILY FARM DAY – 10 a.m. – 5 p.m. Explore local farms throughout Schoharie, Otsego, and Delaware Counties. Tour, try products, learn about farming from fish farming to beekeeping, more. Pick up your farm guide from participating, farms, farmer’s markets, libraries, more in the 3 counties. Call 607-547-2536 or download guide from 

Joy Breun Gardner, 45, Oneonta; Cancer Fells Decorated Firefighter


Joy Breun Gardner, 45, Oneonta;

Cancer Fells Decorated Firefighter

Joy Gardner

ONEONTA – Joy Renee Bruen Gardner, 45, a decorated firefighter, passed away Aug. 18, 2019, at Fox Hospital, following a long battle with cancer.

Joy was born June 29, 1974, to Jana Cuda of Texas and Robert Bruen Sr. of Arkansas.  She married Anthony Gardner of Oneonta on Dec. 12, 2012.

Previously, she was a volunteer firefighter for the Laurens Fire Department and Pindars Corners Fire Department. Most recently she became a volunteer for the Meridale Fire Department, where she earned the Distinguished Service Award. She also was a certified emergency medical technician.

IN MEMORIAM: Jean E. Jensen Field, 89; Ran Hartwick Farm With Husband Fred

IN MEMORIAM: Jean Jensen Field, 89;

Ran Hartwick Farm With Husband Fred

Jean E. Fields

HARTWICK – Jean Elizabeth Jensen Field, 89, who with husband Fred ran a farm in Pleasant Valley, died at home Aug. 22, 2019.  Six children survive.

Born Oct. 4, 1930 in Merrickville, she was the middle child of Harold and Elizabeth Jensen of Otego. Raised in the Seventh Day Adventist faith, she graduated from South Lancaster Academy, South Lancaster, Mass.

At age 21, she married Fred S. Field of Hartwick at the Baptist Church parsonage. She always said she should have known what she was in for when Fred didn’t have the $5 to pay the minister!

Celebration Of Life Planned Sept. 7 For Monica Anne O’Leary Pawkett

Celebration Of Life Planned Sept. 7

For Monica Anne O’Leary Pawkett

Monica Anne O’Leary Pawkett

ONEONTA – A celebration of life for Monica Anne O’Leary Pawkett, 40, is planned at 1 p.m. Saturday, Sept. 7, at First Presbyterian Church.

She was born on Jan. 23, 1979, and was a bright light until Aug. 1, 2019 when she left this world surrounded by the love of family and friends.

Monica courageously fought cancer for nearly eight years. But she didn’t let it define her.

Hanzolo Wins Battle Of Bands, Spot At Albany’s PearlPalooza

Hanzolo Wins Battle Of Bands,

Spot At Albany’s PearlPalooza

Hanzolo, the popular Cooperstown band, won WEQX’s Battle of the Bands last night at the Skyloft in Albany. The win gets them a spot at PearlPalooza, downtown Albany’s free music festival Sept. 14; they’ll perform at 1 p.m. The local band consists of Carl Loewenguth, vocals, guitar; Nick Summers, trumpet, keys; Jack Loewenguth, bass; Sebastian Green, drums; Nate Olmstead, aux percussion, drums; Joey Katz, sax, keys, and James Matson, trombone.
New License Plates Called ‘Money Grab’


New License Plates

Called ‘Money Grab’

County Clerk Sinnott Gardner Urges

Drivers To Complain To Governor

Governor Cuomo has asked New Yorkers to vote on a new license plate design. The Otsego County clerk says its an attempt to shift the cost of a DMV mistake onto drivers.
Sinnott Gardner

COOPERSTOWN – The Cuomo Administration’s plans to replace New York State license plates is an “unnecessary money grab,” County Clerk Kathy Sinnott Gardner declared in a public statement.

The new license plates will cost all New York drivers $25.  If you want to keep your current plate, you will have to pay $45.

“In other words,” Sinnott Gardner said, “if you want to keep your plate number, you will pay a total of $45 … This fee is absolutely unnecessary – they are making New York State drivers pay for their bad business deal with their vendors.”

General’s 1st Mission: Can He Raise Enough?


General’s 1st Mission:

Can He Raise Enough?

Oneonta’s German Challenge To Delgado

Intrigues Former Congressmen Gibson, Faso

Congressional candidate and Maj. Gen. (ret.) Anthony German and wife Diana pose with family, from left, Josh, 32, Zach, 24, Becca, 21, (a spring SUNY Oneonta grad, soon to be married) and Ben, 29. The sons followed their father into military service.

By JIM KEVLIN • Special to

Tony German and wife Diana at their home in the hills outside Oneonta.

ONEONTA – After 36 years in the New York State National Guard, retiring Feb. 2 at adjutant general, the top commander, Tony German’s career was guided by a set of values:  Integrity first, service before self, and excellence in all we do.

That’s the code of the U.S. Air Force, he explained.

“I’m not going to change now,” he said Sunday, Aug. 18, in an interview at his Cemetery Hill home as he contemplates his latest challenge:  Running for the Republican nomination for 19th District congressman.  If he faces a GOP primary and wins next June, he’ll face the Democratic freshman, U.S. Rep. Antonio Delgado on Nov. 3, 2010.

Summer Soirée Sings Praises Of ISD, Clark Sports Center

Summer Soirée Sings Praises

Of ISD, Clark Sports Center

The Otsego County Chamber of Commerce’s Summer Soirée was this evening, celebrating local businesses that promote a good and sustainable life in Otsego County. Information Systems Division (ISD Tech) of Oneonta  received the Environmental Stewardship Award for its computer- and electronics-recycling program. The Clark Sports Center of Cooperstown received the Quality of Life Award for helping over 5,500 members live healthier, (including 37 members over 90, who get free memberships).  Above, center, are chamber President Barbara Ann Heegan, Quality of Life sponsor Scott White, Bank of Cooperstown president, behind her at left, and George Busch, NBT Insurance vice president/sales.  To to the left of Heegan, front row, are ISD partners Ron Ranc and Roxanna Hurlburt; behind, from right, are ISD’s Chris Ranc, Wilhemina Guest and Mike LaBarr.  To the right of Heagan are Clark Director Val Paige and her managers, Erin Newkirk, Kathy Graham, Jim DiLiberto and Rich Jantzi.  Inset, left, Assemblyman John Salka, R-Brookfield, reads citations from  state Sen. Jim Seward, r-Milford, who was also represented by his aide, Mira Jergovich, commending the two organizations.  The dinner, attended by 80, was in the middle of the Clark’s basketball court. (Ian Austin/

Driver Found Dead After Propane Truck Goes Off Hobart Road

Driver Found Dead

After Propane Truck

Runs Off Hobart Road

Cause Possibly Medical, Troopers Say

When troopers arrived to investigate a propane-crash in Hobart, they found the driver dead in the cab.

HOBART – After a propane truck went off the road here yesterday afternoon, troopers responded to find the driver dead in in the cab.

Investigators concluded that – for an unknown reason, possibly medically related – Edward M. Walley Jr., 62, of Delhi, drove off the roadway, into a ditch and struck a utility pole before rolling to its passenger side.  He was not wearing a seatbelt at the time of the crash.

The accident happened at 1:18 p.m. at Town Brook Road at Red Rock Road in the Town of Stamford.


‘Made In New York’

Exhibit Opening Reception


OPENING RECEPTION – 5 – 7 p.m. Celebrate opening of exhibits “Made In New York: The Art Of Wood” and solo show “Keeping It Real: Hand Drawn Stone Lithography in the 21st Century” by Amy Silberkleit. Cooperstown Art Association, 22 Main St., Coopersotwn. 607-547-9777 or visit

Mayor To Brief Public On Multiple Projects

Mayor To Brief Public

On Multiple Projects

Downtown Upgrades, Doubleday Field,
Pioneer  Park, Sewage Plant On Agenda
Mayor Tillapaugh at last week’s groundbreaking on water-treatment plant upgrades, one of the subjects of the Aug. 28 briefing. ( photo)

COOPERSTOWN – Mayor Ellen Tillapaugh Kuch will update the public on several village projects due to begin right after Labor Day at an informational meeting at 6 p.m. Wednesday, Aug. 28, in Village Hall’s second-floor ballroom, which is accessible by elevator from the Fair Street entrance.

Topics to be covered include the waste-water treatment plant improvement project,  Pioneer Park upgrades,  the continuation of the Downtown Pedestrian Improvement Project (TEP), and design and construction plans for Doubleday Field.    Engineers and contractors will be on hand to answer questions.

Two Arrested With Switchblade, Crack Cocaine

Deputies: Worcester Pair

Found With Crack Cocaine

Jesse Wilson
Samone Van Buren

WORCESTER – Two people were arrested in Worcester after Otsego County Sheriff’s Deputies allegedly found crack cocaine, a switchblade and drug paraphernalia at their home.

Jesse R. Wilson, 30, and Samone R. VanBuren, 29, both of Worcester were arrested after deputies executed a search warrant at their residence in the Town of Worcester.

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21 Railroad Ave. Cooperstown, New York 13326 • (607) 547-6103