News of Otsego County


Tim Mead Resigns As HoF’s President

Tim Mead Resigns

As HoF’s President

Tim Mead

COOPERSTOWN – Tim Mead, President of the National Baseball Hall of Fame and Museum, has announced that he will be resigning, effective around mid-May.

Mead, who said his whole career has been motivated by “love of baseball,” had been commuting back and forth to his family in California.  “Try as I might, even with the unwavering support of my family, these last 22 months have been challenging in maintaining my responsibilities to them.”

Jane Forbes Clark, Hall of Fame chairman, accepted Mead’s resignation with regret.

Rejoining The World

Rejoining The World

By JIM KEVLIN • Special to

After a year of separation, Cathy Weir of Cooperstown trims her mom Elinore Sorbera’s pageboy. Now in her 90s, Mrs. Sorbera was head nurse at the county’s former Meadows Nursing Home on Route 33, predecessor to Coopers- town Center, where she resides now.

A decade ago, Kent Turner was working in the kitchen at Oneonta’s B-Side Ballroom, the popular nightspot, when he noticed a vivacious woman and her girlfriends were becoming regulars.

“We starting talking,” said Kent, and one thing led to another. “She had a heart of gold.”

Kent and Jackie fell in love.

Soon, the couple was attending Oneonta’s Community Gospel Church. For seven happy years, “she was really helpful in turning my life around,” he said.

But it wasn’t to continue.

Jackie was stricken with premature dementia in her late 50s, and she was admitted to Cooperstown Center’s Serenity Place, where her loving companion visited her regularly – until he couldn’t.

In February 2020, as COVID-19 loomed, state regulations forced Cooperstown Center to close its doors to visitors. For 13 months, not just Jackie and Kent, but the Center’s more than 150 residents were cut off from their families.

“When we had to close those doors,” said Lacey Rinker, director of nursing, “it breaks your heart.”

A Great American – And Texan

A Great American – And Texan

Ramsey Clark In Long Line Of Lone Star Progressives

Ramsey Clark poses with Joe Stillman, the Oneonta filmmaker who produced “Citizen Clark: A Life of Principle,” the
only film that recounts the life of the
Texan and LBJ attorney general who spent his last 50 years seeking to right wrongs

Ramsey Clark has always been one of my all-time heroes.

Chip Northrup

He came from a long line of Texas progressive (liberal) Democrats, starting with Speaker of the House Sam Rayburn and President Lyndon B. Johnson, which ended with George W. Bush’s defeat of Gov. Anne Richards.

What drove all of these politicians were two things – an absolute horror of the devastation of the Dust Bowl and Great Depression – which Rayburn and LBJ lived through – and a moral conviction to use politics to help people.

Their idol in this regard was Franklin Delano Roosevelt, whom Rayburn served and LBJ idolized. Their loyalty was not misplaced. LBJ was from the Texas Hill Country, which was one of the last areas in the United States without rural electrification – before FDR.

Think “The Grapes of Wrath.”

Ramsey Clark, Filmmaker Joe Stillman’s Hero

Ramsey Clark, Filmmaker

Joe Stillman’s Hero

Ramsey Clark in a still from Joe Stillman’s “A Life of Principle,” the only full documentary on the international activist’s life.

‘Tell me about the War on Poverty,” Saddam Hussein asked Ramsey Clark when they met in Baghdad on Nov. 12, 1990 to negotiate a hostage release, Oneonta filmmaker Joe Stillman recalled in an interview this week.

In reply, Clark, who had been President Lyndon Johnson’s attorney general in the 1960s, told how one afternoon LBJ, “War on Poverty” creator, showed up in his Justice Department office “out of the blue.”

“Johnson started talking about Mexican-American children who would arrive at school with bloody feet,” having walked barefoot across sharp stones to get to class, Stillman reported.

As the president spoke, he began to cry, Clark told Stillman.

“You know,” Saddam replied, “that doesn’t seem quite right. How could he be concerned about children with bloody feet when 2 million people were dying in Vietnam because of U.S. bombing?”

“That was one of the lessons of Ramsey’s life,” said Stillman, who spent “hundreds of hours” with the former attorney general producing the prize-winning “Citizen Clark: A Life of Principle,” (2017). “We think we all have a strong allegiance to our country, but there are a lot of things being done that not everyone knows about.

Bobby Walker Succeeded At College Republican Helm


Bobby Walker Succeeded

At College Republican Helm

In Washington for President Trump’s 2017 nomination, Bobby Walker, then a SUNY Albany freshman, recognized the Commerce Secretary Steven Mnuchin, then little known, and snapped a selfie.

COOPERSTOWN – Bobby Walker, Cooperstown Central School, ’16, stepped aside over the weekend as chairman of the New York State College Republicans.  He is completing his degree at SUNY Albany and plans to continue fulltime with the state GOP Committee’s Communications Department, where he is currently digital director.

Walker has been succeeded by Augustus LeRoux, a Syracuse University sophomore, Walker’s chief of staff at the NYFCR.  Daniel Koerner of SUNY Cobleskill become vice chairman.

Laurie Zimniewicz Among 3 New Bassett Directors

Laurie Zimniewicz Among

3 New Bassett Directors


COOPERSTOWN – Laurie Zimniewicz of Oneonta, current Fox Hospital board chairman, was one of three new members of the Bassett Health Network Board of Directors announced today.

Also appointed are:

• Anil Rustgi, MD, director of the Herbert Irving Comprehensive Cancer Center at New York-Presbyterian Hospital/Columbia University Irving Medical Center and dean health sciences and medicine at Columvia.

• Carl Mummenthey, superintendent of schools for the Cobleskill-Richmondville Central School District since 2014.

Looking Past COVID, Glimmer Globe Plans Season

Looking Past COVID,

Glimmer Globe Plans Season

Michael and Danielle Henrici, co-founders of The Glimmer Globe Theatre, announced Saturday, April 3, that there will be live performances this summer at The Farmers’ Museum and Fenimore Art Museum.

Glimmer Globe Theatre announced it will return to staging live performances this summer at Fenimore Art Museum and The Farmers’ Museum.

Glimmer Globe founders Michael Henrici and Danielle Henrici and Fenimore/Farmers’ Performing Arts Manager Mike Tamburrino announced Saturday, April 3, that the company will stage outdoor theater this summer, following a year’s hiatus because of the coronavirus pandemic.

“If all the world’s a stage, for heaven sakes, let’s get back on it,” Danielle Henrici said.

The performances will include main-stage performances of “The Compleat Works of Wllm Shkspr (Abridged)” at the Lucy B. Hamilton Amphitheater at the Fenimore in the town of Otsego. The show will run from Wednesday, July 14, to Sunday, Aug. 22.

The play by Adam Long, Daniel Singer and Jess Winfield was the first show performed by Glimmer Globe Theatre when it debuted a decade ago, the Henricis said.

“It means the world to us to return to this play as we return to the stage,” Danielle Henrici said.

“This is a show that appeals to everyone, even people who claim they don’t like Shakespeare,” she continued.

“It is also an incredible way to introduce children and teens to The Bard.”

Bruno A. Talevi, 96; WWII Veteran, Accountant, Civic Leader In Oneonta, Cooperstown

In Memoriam

Bruno A. Talevi, 96
WWII Veteran, Accountant,
Civic Leader In Oneonta, Cooperstown

Bruno Talevi in his WWII Navy uniform, which fit him all his life.

ONEONTA – Bruno A. Talevi, still looking fit in his World War II Navy uniform, departed this life and went to grasp the hand of the Lord on April 3, 2021.

“Paw-Paw”, as his beloved grandchildren dubbed him, was born in New York City on Aug. 16, 1925, the son of Peter and Rose Talevi. He grew up on the streets of New York and Long Island, playing stickball, Johnny-on-the-Pony, and pinball, and eventually graduated from Benjamin Franklin High School at 16.

After graduation, he worked for the Office of Strategic Services (OSS), a predecessor to the Central Intelligence Agency (CIA), formed to obtain information to sabotage the military efforts of enemy nations during World War II.

Bruno joined the Navy as soon as he turned 18, assigned to the signal corps, transmitting teletype messages from the South Pacific. Although devoted to the military and a loyal American, he was saddened by the dropping of atomic bombs at Hiroshima and Nagasaki. Honorably discharged, Bruno returned home and met a beautiful young lady – Vera A. Careccio, whom he married on Aug. 22, 1948.

The G.I. Bill enabled Bruno to attend St. John’s University, and he graduated with a bachelor’s degree in Business Administration in 1950. He joined a small accounting firm in New York City for three years, then moved to Oneonta, where his accounting practice grew to be the largest in three counties.

He retired in 1986 after moving to Cooperstown with Vera.

BERKSON: ‘It’s The Knuckle On Your Middle Finger That Does It’

‘It’s The Knuckle On Your
Middle Finger That Does It’

Terry Berkson, who has an MFA in creative writing from Brooklyn College, lives on a farm outside Richfield Springs. His articles have appeared in New York magazine, the New York Daily News Sunday Magazine, Automobile and other publications.

About 15 years ago, after having read several of his books, I heard that Jim Harrison, the writer and poet, was giving a reading and a talk at Barnes & Noble on Union Square in Manhattan.

Several months before at a barbeque on Canadarago Lake outside of Richfield Springs, I had talked at length about Harrison’s “Legends of the Fall,” and several of his other works, with friend and artist Brendon Pulver who, like me, was an enthusiastic fan of the esteemed writer.

When I arrived at the lecture hall, to be sure I was in the right room, I asked a man who appeared to be surveying the seating arrangement, “Is this the Harrison reading?”

To my surprise, it was Brendan Pulver who had come, I thought, all the way from Richfield Springs. We found seats towards the front of an audience of about a hundred.

‘Officer Acted To Save Life Of Child By Firing 2 Shots’

‘Officer Acted To Save Life
Of Child By Firing 2 Shots’

Tyler Johnson, 23, Takes 2 Bullets In Chest


This is a frame from a video taken by Kevin Marcewicz after Tyler Johnson, 23, was shot twice in the chest. Police said he pulled a knife during a domestic dispute at 48 River St., Oneonta, and later died of his wounds.
Tyler Johnson, 23, died from two gunshots to the chest.

A 23-year-old man, Tyler Johnson, was shot twice in the chest after he allegedly pulled a knife at 1:15 p.m. Tuesday, April 6, during a domestic dispute in a duplex at 48 River St., next to the former Foti’s Bakery.

According to Mayor Gary Herzig, who provided a report to the public via YouTube at the beginning of that evening’s Common Council meeting, two officers responded to “a domestic matter” and found a mother, a 2-year-old child and Johnson at the scene.

A neighbor said the child was Johnson’s; he identified the mother as Caitlyn Marie Calvey, and said she was Johnson’s fiancée.

“While officers were there,” said Herzig, “the third-party male did attack the mother with a knife. She sustained some wounds, but was treated and is OK. One officer acted to save the life of the child by firing two shots. The individual with the knife was injured as a result.”

McREYNOLDS: Experiencing ‘Rashers’ To ‘Baps’

Experiencing ‘Rashers’ To ‘Baps’

Erna Morgan McReynolds, raised in Gilbertsville, is retired managing director/financial adviser at Morgan Stanley’s Oneonta Office, and an inductee in the Barron’s magazine National Adviser Hall of Fame.  She lives in Franklin.

Just leaving Belfast to go to London was scary. Soldiers dressed in camouflage gear held machine guns and guarded barbed wire topped fences which ringed the airport.

I kissed my family through the fence. Security whisked my suitcase away and sealed my handbag in cling wrap until we landed in London.

After 10 days in Northern Ireland, I loved the security. I imagined my plane blown up in mid-air, hurtling to the Irish Sea.

But Northern Ireland — I was still with my family. London? Perhaps the biggest city in the world. I had to travel miles from the airport to central London. I had figured out a bus would be the cheapest public transportation — and found the right stop.

A couple of hours later, I was at Kings Cross-St Pancras – railway, bus and underground stations all in one place.

My $1 a day guidebook said my hostel was a short walk from Kings Cross. I realized that author hadn’t been lugging a suitcase with all of his worldly possessions to get there.

Eventually I found the street number on a windowless door. I pushed the buzzer, climbed a windowless flight of stairs. Arrived at a dingy counter where a clerk scrutinized my passport, wrote down details, demanded cash in advance.

Then he locked my passport in a safe. Told me I couldn’t have it till I checked out. By then I expected that he would murder me in my sleep, steal my traveler’s checks and cash them with my passport.

Hanna Bergene Sworn In On Top Cooperstown Board


Hanna Bergene Sworn In

On Top Cooperstown Board

The Bergene family gathers around daughter Hanna, 29, after she was sworn in as the Cooperstown Village Board’s newest trustee this evening by Village Clerk Jenna Utter.  With Hanna are her parents Gregory and Susan, right, and Henry Bauer, left.  Hanna was elected March 16, as was veteran Trustee Cindy Falk, inset right, whose husband Glenn holds the Bible for the fifth time as his wife takes the oath.  Mayor Ellen Tillapaugh Kuch reappointed Falk as deputy mayor, a position she’s filled for the past several years.  With the addition of Hanna, the seven-member Board of Trustees achieved a majority of women – Bergene and Falk, Mayor Ellen Tillapaugh Kuch, and Trustee Jeanne Dewey. (Jim Kevlin/

SQSPCA Thrift Shop Shuts, Anticipating New Building


SQSPCA Thrift Shop Shuts,

Anticipating New Building

Sara Lucas, manager of the SQSPCA’s New Leash On Life Thrift Shop, sorts through final contributions today as the Hartwick Seminary establishment readies to close its doors for the time being. The thrift shop must vacate by April 30 to make way for Montezuma Wineries of Seneca Falls, which is planning to renovate the building as a tasting room. Until the SQSPCA’s new animal shelter and thrift shop open in late springs or early summer about a half-mile north on Route 28 at Index, Sara plans to create a Facebook Marketplace site so loyal customers can continue to partake of the thrift shop’s offerings. (Jim Kevlin/
Artist Mary Nolan, Studio Mates Visit ‘Water As Muse’


Artist Mary Nolan, Studio

Mates Visit ‘Water As Muse’

Mary Nolan, noted plein air artist, this afternoon examines a triptych of Otsego Lake that is the centerpiece of “Water As Muse,” an exhibition of her works that is part of The Fenimore Art Museum’s offerings this summer.  With her are two other artists she shares a studio with in Cooperstown, Maria Tripp, center, and May-Britt Joyce.  The Fenimore, which opens for the season yesterday, has been featuring a local artist among its offerings for the past several years.  Other exhibits now open include “Manzanar,” photos by Ansel Adams of Nisei families that were confined to internment campus during World War II.   The highlight of the season, “Keith Haring: Radiant Vision,” opens May 29.  (Jim Kevlin/
Clark Oliver Resigns As Democratic Chair


Clark Oliver Resigns

As Democratic Chair

By JIM KEVLIN • Special to

Aimee Swan
Clark Oliver

ONEONTA – After six months, Clark Oliver has resigned as chairman of the county Democratic Committee, and his predecessor, Aimee Swan, resumes the post.

A few minutes ago, Oliver said he plans to seek a master’s degree in Public Administration this fall as SUNY Albany’s Rockefeller School, with a concentration on policy analysis.

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