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News of Otsego County

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HAPPENIN’ OTSEGO for FRIDAY, APRIL 6
HAPPENIN’ OTSEGO for FRIDAY, APRIL 6

Fun At The Healthy Living Expo

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LIVING HEALTHIER – 10 a.m. – 4 p.m. Features fun activities, vendors, a Red Cross Blood Drive, presentations on subjects ranging from preventing Lyme disease to a Tai Chi demonstration. Admission, Free. Foothills Performing Arts Center, Oneonta. Call 607-547-4230 or visit www.lheotsego.com

BENEFIT – 5 – 8 p.m. Spaghetti Dinner & Chinese Auction to benefit Cory Perrault and family while he battles cancer. Hartwick Fire Dept., 3088 Co. Hwy. 11, Hartwick. Call Beth O’Brien at 607-293-6046 or visit www.gofundme.com/the-perrault-family

Focus Indictments Put All Nursing-Home Operators On Notice

Editorial, June 29, 2018

Focus Indictments

Put All Nursing-Home

Operators On Notice

Now we know, lives indeed may be at stake.
Two top executives of Focus Ventures have been arrested on eight counts involving two residents of the county’s former nursing home, Otsego Manor. (The county sold the Manor to Focus in January 2014, for $18.5 million, and Centers Health Care bought it from Focus in January for an undisclosed sum.)
Five of the counts are “endangering the welfare of an incompetent or physically disabled person.” The other three are “willful violation of health laws.”
Two patients were involved. The first, identified as M.B., was a celebrated case. She was left untended in a wheelchair throughout Memorial Day Weekend 2016. Several nurses and aides faced criminal charges as a result. The second, now known to be Robert Banta, longtime chair of the Otsego County Soil & Water Conservation board; the conservation center on Route 33, Town of Middlefield, is named in his honor. He fell on June 17, 2015, the night he moved into Focus, hit his head, and died a week later.
Arrested and arraigned May 31 in Otsego Town Court in Fly Creek were
Focus CEO Joseph Zupnik and Daniel Herman, a
partner in the company.
The company that operated Focus Otsego, CCRN
Operator, was also charged.

On the one hand, there’s hope in this piece of bad news, hope that nursing-home operators can’t recklessly cut staff and not be held responsible for deadly consequences.
Two weeks before, another piece of bad news, that Centers, Focus’ successor, had unilaterally raised “private pay” rates from $320 to $510 a day, the highest in New York State – Long Island and New York City included – caused a sense of despair. (Since, Centers has rolled it back to $410.)
With federal reimbursement policies forcing public nursing homes into private hands, can nothing be done to ensure the new private owners provide satisfactory care to our most vulnerable fellow citizens?
Recently, Gary Koutnik, D-Oneonta, vice chairman of the Otsego County Board of Representatives and chairman of its Human Services Committee, wrote a letter in response to an editorial urging the county board take more responsibility for the former Otsego Manor.
Having sold the Manor, he said, the county board no longer has responsibility for what happens there. This is not to beat up on Koutnik: His opinion is widely shared among county representatives.

The Zupnik-Herman arrests prompt us to repeat our point, and expand on it.
At the very least, the county board should have a representative at every meeting of the Centers (formerly Focus) Family Council. Medicaid regulations require nursing homes that accept federal reimbursement to have such councils. It is the only opportunity for the public to be briefed and ask questions of administrators.
Our state senator and assemblymen should do the same. And certainly, Congressman John Faso, R-Kinderhook, or any Democrat who might defeat him this fall should follow suit – after all, federal reimbursement policies forced the county to sell excellent Otsego Manor to profit-powered entities.
Since, who hasn’t heard stories with dismay about the degradation of service locally?

Regardless, the Zupnik-Herman indictments are excellent news, whatever the resolution of the court case.
The indictments, by the state Attorney General’s Office, send the message loud and clear: Top executives of nursing-home corporations may be exempt from the common decency in the search for profits, but they aren’t exempt from the criminal code.
What’s needed is whistle-blowers, not just private citizens, but the officials we elected to take care of us, who have greater clout in forcing action than the rest of us.
(In this case, that might indeed have already happened; if so, bravo.)

HAPPENIN’ OTSEGO for SATURDAY, JULY 21
HAPPENIN’ OTSEGO for SATURDAY, JULY 21

Deowongo Island Day

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SUMMER PICNIC – Noon – 3 p.m. Day of summer fun featuring food, party barge rides to Deowongo Island, live music. Bakers Beach, St. Hwy. 28, Richfield Springs. 607-547-2366 or visit www.otsegolandtrust.org/the-news/programs-a-events/420-deowongo-island-day-clia-picnic-july-21

DANCE PARTY – 6 – 10 p.m. Back to the 80’s with cover band “Flux Capacitor.” Includes snacks, beer, wine, soft drinks. Cost, $25. Proceeds to Greater Oneonta Historical Society building fund. Deer Haven Campground, 180 Deer Haven Ln., Oneonta. 607-432-0960 or visit www.facebook.com/OneontaHistory/

New SUNY President Named Parade Grand Marshal
BARBARA JEAN MORRIS ON CAMPUS TODAY

SUNY President’s 1st Duty:

4th Parade Grand Marshal

Barbara Jean Morris

ONEONTA – As she begins her new job today, SUNY Oneonta’s news president, Dr. Barbara Jean Morris, has already assumed her first civic assignment: She will be Grand Marshal of the city’s Hometown Fourth of July parade this Wednesday.

The parade marks the first public event for the new president, who arrived on campus last week to begin her tenure as SUNY Oneonta’s eighth president.

Morris, the former provost and vice president for academic affairs at Fort Lewis College in Durango, Colo., is the college’s second female president – after Nancy Kleniewski, who completed her 10-year tenure June 22 – and proud of her Native American ties.

Oneonta Actor Cuyle Carvin On Brink Of Big-Time

Oneonta Actor Cuyle Carvin On Brink Of Big-Time

By LIBBY CUDMORE • allotsego.com

Edition of Thursday-Friday, Nov. 20-21, 2014

Cuyle plays Lt. Jeff Larkin, a Navy SEAL, on CBS’ “Hawaii Five-O.
Cuyle plays Lt. Jeff Larkin, a Navy SEAL, on CBS’ “Hawaii Five-O.

ONEONTA – Like many other people, Cuyle Carvin found his first job in the employment section of the newspaper – he just didn’t know it was going to be his career.

“I was working at the Southside Mall and I saw this ad calling for extras for a crime reenactment show they were shooting in Delhi,” he said. “So I went, and they had me read some lines – a few days later, I got this call asking me to come out to Ohio.”

The show, “The World’s Astonishing News!” only aired in Japan, but it was the first step in the Oneontan’s acting career that’s been advancing for a decade now.

Carvin, a 1999 OHS graduate and a 2003 Hartwick College alumni, will be featured in the Dec. 14 episode of “CSI: Crime Scene Investigation” on CBS.

And to date he has appeared in more than 50 film and television roles – including “NCIS: Los Angeles” and “The Mentalist” since that first film shoot in Delhi.

After returning from Ohio, he moved to New York City and started looking for more work. “I thought I wanted to be a model, but that was the stupidest thing ever! I had to take myself too seriously, and I’m a little too introverted.”

In 2006, he got booked on the soap opera, “One Life To Live,” in a non-speaking role at a pool party. His model good looks served him well. He was picked out of 120 extras to interact directly with one of the actresses, who snatched a beach ball out of his hands. “I thought I was so cool,” he said. “I called all my friends and family and told them to watch it.”

But sometimes his excitement got a little ahead of him. “I was on ‘As the World Turns,’ and I told my family to look for me to say, ‘More coffee or more water, sir?’ But when it came time for my scene, all you could see was my elbow! It could have been anybody! My brother still teases me about it.”

He booked other soap operas before landing a starring role as Sam Battle in the film, “Captain Battle: Legacy War.” He then starred in several other films, including “Assault of the Sasquatch” and “Fog Warning.”

Just before he decided to move out to Los Angeles, he booked a speaking role on “Law and Order: Special Victims Unit,” in the 2010 episode “Quickie.” “I played the husband in bed sleeping next to my wife. And when she hears a scream, I told her, ‘It’s probably just some party girl’.”

And although he was living in L.A., he didn’t forget where he came from. While hosting a screening of “Fog Warning,” at the Southside Mall Cinema, he met Lori Kelly, who told him about her screenplay, “Mineville.” The film, based on Kelly’s grandfather’s life as a miner, also starred William Sadler and Paul Sorvino.

But just because he was a local boy didn’t mean the part was written for him. “Mike Williams, who was in ‘The Blair Witch Project,’ was my neighbor,” said Carvin. “I saw him one day and told him about just finishing ‘Mineville,’ and he told me he had been offered my part five years earlier!”

Lately, the former high school jock is putting his love of sports front and center for a good cause in “The Cuyle Carvin Coloring Book,” which is being distributed by “Drawing With Fred” star Fred M. Grandinetti. “There’s a page that shows me coming out of the TV, and I take the kid’s hand and we go outside to play,” he said.

The coloring book has been distributed to schools, hospitals and charity events throughout Massachusetts. Copies are also available for request on his website, www.cuylecarvin.com.

And in addition to his upcoming role on “CSI,” he’s also working on the film “A Million Happy Nows,” with former “Teen Witch” star Dan Gauthier.

“My girlfriend had a huge crush on him when he was in ‘Teen Witch!’” Carvin said. “I told her I’d introduce her.”

Facts, Level-Headed Tactics Way To Lessen Student Rowdiness

Facts, Level-Headed Tactics

Way To Lessen Student Rowdiness

During the debate over Hillside Commons last year, one landlord was talking about how, as the academic credentials of SUNY Oneonta students rose – they are still rising – the damage to his apartments declined.

Of course, it makes sense. The more students who are more focused on their studies, the less interest they have in Beer Pong and the like.

While there is always elevated concern about mischief in college towns like Oneonta when students return – disorderly conduct, noise, public urination and, in the wee hours when the bars empty out, in particular, fights – there’s no comprehensive magic-wand solution immediately at hand.

The news that a SUNY Oneonta student is in critical condition after striking his head on the pavement during an early hours altercation Sunday the 13th underscores how serious the issue can be.

Coincidentally, NPR broadcast a chilling piece on campus drinking on the 8th, reporting 80 percent of college students drink and half of them binge drink. Dr. Sharon Levy, director of teen substance abuse at Boston Children’s Hospital, says, “Everybody’s drinking to get drunk. Kids tell me this is how they socialize with friends.”

When students enter college at 18, “the part of their brain in charge of seeking reward and stimulation is in full gear,” the report continued. “But here’s the tricky part: The part of the brain that could put the brakes on impulsive behavior is still immature and not fully functioning.”

While, locally, we’re concerned, as we should be, about the impact of student misbehavior on the quality of life, students should be more concerned than we are: A half million under the influence are injured every year, and 1,800 die, NPR reported.

To a degree, college extends adolescence: Heavy drinking is more of a problem among college students than their peers in the working world. That speaks to the whole idea of a year of mandatory community service after high school.

Somewhat more mature incoming freshmen would be more focused, better prepared to take advantage of what a college education has to offer and to avoid the pitfalls.

But that’s not a solution we can implement here today.

The point of our local situation is not to panic. The world isn’t coming to an end because 7,500 students are back in town, as they have returned for 125 years at SUNY and 85 at Hartwick.
The Miller Administration has been pursuing sensible solutions for some time now: For instance, opening the lines of communication between the OPD, university police and Hartwick security (where Tom Kelly became director of campus security after a distinguished career in the state police). These people are pros.

In 2012, OPD raided three bars identified as magnets for underage drinkers, then closed them down. Regrettably, this pushed underage drinkers into “house parties” in residential neighborhoods, the current focus of much police activity. Push in here, it comes out there.

In a conversation the other day, the mayor pointed out that the weekend of Sept. 6-7, when mischief spiked, was Pledge Weekend. “But who knew,” he said. Part of the solution, he said, may be understanding the campuses’ social calendars and tapping the college forces to help the OPD during the hot spots.

This is the kind of level-headed problem analysis we’ve come to expect from Mayor Miller, an approach that lends itself to a problem that can be eased now, but only solved longterm.

A good first step. always, is to get the facts. Numbers were provided at the stormy Tuesday, Sept. 16, Common Council meeting and the impression is they are up. If so, how much? Let’s nail down the extent of any spike before we declare a crisis.

Emotions may be raw right now, but emotions aren’t going to solve anything. The public’s had a say. Now, it might make sense to put together a representative panel to explore the challenge and come up with practical, proven steps.
You can be sure that Oneonta is not unique, that what may be happening here is happening elsewhere. And someone may even have figured out an amelioration.

Regardless, let’s not forget that Oneonta, on balance, is a better, more prosperous place because of our colleges, and the brainy professionals and ever more motivated students they bring here, not to mention the payroll.

The colleges – faculty, students, staff – are our friends.

Let’s treat rowdiness for what it is, a negative piece in a happier whole. When you think about it, isn’t that what so much of life is like?

HOMETOWN HISTORY, July 6, 2012

HOMETOWN HISTORY, July 6, 2012

125 Years Ago
The Local News – A beautiful sight was witnessed at the residence of Lester Eaton, Fairview Street on Monday evening – the blossoming of a night-blooming cereus. Seven buds gradually opened during the evening, filling the room with fragrance and bringing exclamations of delight from all who were privileged to watch the flowers as they unfolded.
The weather this past week has been the hottest known in years. For several days the mercury has managed to creep above ninety degrees, the highest altitude attained being ninety-seven in the shade. Still, there are those who mechanically inquire, “Is it hot enough for you?”
A.D. Yager now carries a fine gold watch which he won by guessing the number of beans in a bottle at the auction rooms of Mr. Close. Mr. Yager guessed within two of the right number as did also G.W. Raymond. Mr. Raymond sold Mr. Yager his interest in the watch.
July 1887

100 Years Ago
It is a fact of much gratification to the faculty and board of education of the Oneonta high school that almost every individual member of this year’s graduating class is planning to continue the search for education in the higher branches next year and a very large percentage of these young men and women are to enter college in September, while a large number also will enter the Normal or continue at the high school for a post graduate course as preparation for college. According to present plans the Normal will receive Misses Janet Mary Ainslee, Agnes Bell Bailey, Ruth Luella Clark, Grace Madge Crouch, Blanche Eldred, Sarah McCracken Emory, Lila Mae Hall, Ethel May Kidder, Louise Marie Kirchoff, Marion Marcia Lull, Mae Elizabeth MacDonald, and Mable Neva Reynolds. Clyde Frederick Bresee will enter New York University; Herbert Clapsaddle Getman, Hamilton College; Earl Sewell Hoyt, Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute; Daniel Luce, Jr., Yale University; Raymond Maure, Wesleyan University; Douglas Stewart McCrum, Amherst College; Ernest Granville Rathbun, Cornell University; and William Henry Stratton, Colgate University.
July 1912

80 Years Ago
Five play centers opened for the summer on Tuesday with a trained staff of playground workers with recreational programs for the young folks of the city. This summer marks the eighth season of playground activity in this community. All sorts of equipment will be at the disposal of the various groups and a varied and interesting program of crafts, games, and sports is in readiness. A trained worker is in charge of the boys’ and girls’ groups respectively at each unit of the system, and careful consideration is shown to each child in attendance. The girls will have their time available for soap carving, basketry, weaving, paper-modeling, leather braiding, and the making of yarn gifts as well as the many games and sports. The boys will begin immediate work on athletic badge tests, with an opportunity for all ages to earn a badge on the successful completion of the standard tests for his age. These tests include running, jumping, chinning, ball throw, etc.
July 1932

60 Years Ago
General Douglas MacArthur, the old soldier who didn’t fade away after all, set the Republicans on fire last night calling for a mighty all-party crusade against making America “a socialistic, or even later a Communistic state.” The five-star general of the Army set off a long, wild ovation when he came before the strife-torn Republican National Convention to flay the Democrats for “tragic blunders” leading the nation, he said, toward a third world war. MacArthur’s speech struck two main chords: One – The Democratic Party has been captured by schemers who are wrecking the American standard of living, making world conquest easy for the Russians and setting this nation’s course “unerringly toward the socialistic regimentation of a totalitarian state.” Two – The Republicans have a golden opportunity in the November election to enlist Americans with no distinctions of race, creed or political affiliation in a crusade for peace, prosperity and tranquility.
July 1952

40 Years Ago
How do you create a project that will combine science, mathematics, art and reading for a group of fifth-graders with the added feature of keeping them actively interested? Fifth grade teacher Wendall Bachman of Greater Plains found the answer. Take a trip – a trip to Mars, that is. Bachman’s class created a “space craft,” planned their trip, computing the time and distance on a scale of three minutes equaling one day, programmed a scale flight progress model, and took off for Mars. The youngsters went so far as to remain in school over Friday night, so that the flight wouldn’t be interrupted. “Blast-off” was at 12:02 p.m., Friday, June 16, with the flight schedule landing on Mars at 9:46 p.m. on December 23. Part of the astronauts’ schedule was a series of “walks on Mars” during which astronauts Steve Lawton and Tom Gaffney gathered “specimens of plant life” as well as samples of the Martian “soil.” They left Mars at 10:16 p.m., January 4, and landed back on earth at 8:01 a.m. July 15. Mr. Bachman and his wife stayed with the youngsters during the entire experiment, camping out in the classroom with them Friday night.
July 1972

30 Years Ago
The 194th General Assembly of the United Presbyterian Church in the United States of America declared its opposition Monday to a proposed constitutional amendment, endorsed by President Ronal Reagan. The amendment reads in part: Nothing in this Constitution shall be construed to prohibit individual or group prayer in public schools or other public institutions. No person shall be required by the United States or by any state to participate in prayer.
July 1982

10 Years Ago
Catskill Area Hospice & Palliative Care, Inc. is set to offer its first Child/Teen Bereavement Camp. Called “Camp Forget Me Not,” the campers will meet on Tuesdays and Wednesdays at the State University College at Oneonta Camp. The camp is free of charge to area children and teens in grades K-12 who have suffered the loss of a parent, sibling, or other close relative or friend. There will be fun activities mixed with grief support and counseling.
July 2002

HOMETOWN HISTORY, June 21, 2013

HOMETOWN HISTORY, June 21, 2013

100 Years Ago
Local News – Frank Pierce of Otego has purchased of Arthur M. Butts the local agent, a new Cadillac touring car. Mr. Pierce will never have reason to regret his selection. While there are many good cars being made these days there are none better at the price than these same Cadillacs.
One of the largest regular passenger trains lately over the D. & H. through this city was No. 303 Wednesday morning, which consisted of ten cars drawn by two locomotives. The train, besides the regular equipment included three cars occupied by the Scranton, Binghamton and Troy baseball teams, a tourist sleeper and an extra Pullman.
A model locomotive constructed entirely of wood by Thurlow Smith was on exhibition yesterday in the display window of Bresee’s Department Store and attracted much attention from passersby. It is a very clever piece of work and every part of the exterior of a real locomotive is found in proper proportion on the miniature model.
June 1913

80 Years Ago
Four grades at the Oneonta Plains School, together with their teachers, held picnics at local parks yesterday, and the other four will hold outings Thursday. The first and second grades, under the direction of Mrs. Helen Murray and Miss Frances Pennybacker, had dinner at Neahwa Park. Seventh and eighth grade pupils, with Mrs. Ruth St. John and Mrs. Blanch Loucks in charge, had supper at Wilber Park where a number of boys and girls went swimming in the park pool. Thursday’s program will include a picnic at Becker’s Grove near the school for the third and fourth grades under the supervision of Miss Gladys Church and Miss Grace Wilbur. The fifth grade outing will take place at Wilber Park and the sixth grade will go to Goodyear Lake. Miss Margaret Slade and Miss Geraldine Wall, respectively, will have charge of these two groups.
June 1933

60 Years Ago
“Little Bertha,” a World War I artillery weapon that withstood the rigors of climate and scrap drives for nearly 30 years in front of the National Guard Armory, went to the scrap heap yesterday. Like an old soldier fading away, the howitzer-like cannon creaked and groaned a little before finally submitting to the junk man’s hammers. There was no fanfare – just a sigh of relief from National Guard officials. “That thing was getting a little dangerous,” a sergeant said. “The kids were playing around it and they might have gotten hurt. It was falling apart anyway. It was an eyesore.” The cannon, a 1917 one-ton Austrian field piece came to Oneonta in the early 1920s as part of a U.S. shipment of war souvenirs to state armories. Adrian Jenks, an armorer recalls unloading “Little Bertha” from her crate and paying the freight charge of $40. Jenks took care of the gun until he retired two years ago. Jenks was proud of her. When WWII scrap drives threatened “Little Bertha” the veterans of the first war banded together to save her. “They didn’t want her scrapped,” he said. “They wanted people to remember.” Along with five old machine guns, “Little Bertha” fetched a grand total of $21. A flower bed is planned for the area the cannon once occupied.
June 1953

40 Years Ago
Hank Majeski, Dave O’Brien and Nick Lambros once again had to face the toughest job in baseball Tuesday when they had to tell free agent Geoff Wright he wouldn’t be with the 1973 Oneonta Yankees. Wright, a graduate of Ithaca College was working out at second base with the O-Yanks along with Randy Braxton from California. Free agents Pete Wyso and Don Anderson, fresh out of Hartwick College, remain with the club. Anderson is one of ten pitchers and Wyso is one of three catchers at Damaschke. Tim Grice, a graduate of Minnesota University, arrived in camp yesterday and is a good looking catcher. He just got through playing in the College World Series at Omaha, Nebraska where the Golden Gophers placed third behind Southern Cal and Arizona State universities.
June 1973

30 Years Ago
Oneonta police are not kept very busy by serious crimes, but that allows members of the department to assist local residents in a variety of ways, ranging from retrieving keys locked inside cars to chasing bats out of houses. Motorists who lock their keys in their cars are the most frequent problem according to Police Chief John Donadio. “We get a lot of those – maybe 30 a month,” he said. “That’s almost one a day.” During the first two weekends this month, police handled only two criminal offenses and five criminal investigations, such as burglaries, thefts, trespassing and vandalism, in which no arrests were made. Meanwhile, there were more than 20 miscellaneous calls including parking, littering, loitering, under-age drinking, excessive noise, and reports of suspicious persons.
June 1983

20 Years Ago
School lunch menu for the Oneonta City Schools – Monday: Spicy Mexican tacos, seasoned rice, buttered vegetables, fresh fruit, milk. No alternate. Tuesday: Spaghetti with meat sauce, bread and butter, tossed green salad, assorted fruit and milk. Alternate: Tuna salad sandwich. Wednesday: Chicken nuggets with dip sauce, creamy mashed potatoes, buttered vegetables, fresh fruit and milk. Alternate: bologna sandwich. Thursday: Free Icee Jucee, creamy macaroni and cheese, carrot salad with raisins, bread and butter, assorted fruit and milk. Alternate: Southern fried chicken. Friday: Homemade pizza, tossed green salad, assorted fruit and milk. No alternate.
June 1993

10 Years Ago
Oneonta Tigers’ manager Randy Ready and his team are off to a flying start for the 2003 NY-P season as they completed a three-game opening sweep of the Vermont Expos with a 3-1 victory at Damaschke Field before 401 fans. Gilberto Mejia’s two run triple in the third inning keyed the Tigers’ offense and starter Luis Diaz scattered eight hits over five innings. “The pitching’s been good,” Ready said. “We’ve been playing good defense the first three games of the year with just one error and that was made in the outfield. It’s a bonus when the infielders can make the plays.” Diaz said he’d never allowed more than five hits in a game before.
June 2003

Mary R. Wright, 93; Pioneer In Hospitality
IN MEMORIAM

Mary R. Wright, 93;

Pioneer In Hospitality

Mary R. Wright

COOPERSTOWN – Mary R. Wright, who lit many new trails for women during her 60 years in hospitality as one of the first women hired to manage a hotel, chair a collegiate hospitality program, and start her own consulting practice, died on Nov. 8, 2017, at her home in Cooperstown. She was 93.

Born July 1, 1924, in Syracuse, she was the only child of Roy Lafayette Wright, who was born in Siloam, and Syracuse-born Laura M. Newman Wright Barnard.

Raised in Herkimer, Miss Wright was introduced to Otsego County as a junior in high school when her father arranged a summer job for her as a carhop at Ye Olde Dutch Mill in Emmons. Intrigued by the business, she took to waiting on tables the following summer and, on graduating from Herkimer High School, enrolled in Cornell University’s hospitality management program. One of only five women among the 100 students in her first year-class, she gave no thought to Cornell’s male-dominated classes as she pursued her certificate in hospitality.

HoF Chief ‘Good For Hall, Village’

JEFF IDELSON RETIRING

HoF Chief

‘Good For

Hall, Village’

By JIM KEVLIN

Departing Hall of Fame President Jeff Idelson participates in one of the light-hearted events of his tenure: Presenting Homer Simpson with his plaque on May 27, 2017, on the 25th anniversary of “Homer at the Bat.”

COOPERSTOWN – He was there in 2014 when the first sitting president, Barack Obama, visited the National Baseball Hall of Fame, pitching his tourism strategy.
He was there that fall when Little League World Champion pitcher Mo’Ne Davis, a national phenomenon, took a break from Cooperstown All Star Village in Oneonta to donate her jersey to the Hall.
He was there in 2017 on the steps of the Hall’s library to present the plaque inducting Homer Simpson into the Hall on the 25th anniversary of the iconic Simpsons episode, “Homer at the Bat.”
He was there when Chipper Jones, Vladimir Guerrero and four other standout ballplayers drew 53,000 fans to the 2018 Induction, the second largest crowd in Hall history.

J. Mason Reynolds, 90; Fortune 500 Executive

IN MEMORIAM

J. Mason Reynolds, 90;

Fortune 500 Executive

From Scintilla, Career Took Him Worldwide

J. Mason “Mace” Reynolds

COOPERSTOWN – J. Mason “Mace” Reynolds passed on, with his wife and children beside him, in Stuart, Florida on March 14, 2017.  He was 90.

A thoroughly gregarious man of exuberance, business acumen, impeccable honesty, and generous spirit, Mr. Reynolds was utterly devoted to Rhea, his wife of 68 years, their three children, seven grandchildren, and five great-grandchildren.

Mr. Reynolds retired from Allied-Signal, Inc. in 1989, where he had served for eight years as head of the corporation’s worldwide automotive operations.  Allied-Signal Automotive was then a major OEM supplier of automobile and truck components, with such brand names as Bendix, Fram, Autolite and Garrett.

HOMETOWN HISTORY, September 13, 2013

HOMETOWN HISTORY, September 13, 2013

125 Years Ago
Most of the stores owned by our Hebrew merchants were closed last Thursday night and they and their families observed the inception of the Jewish New Year. Thursday was the first day of Fishri, the first day of the year 5649, according to the reckoning of the Jewish calendar, and from then until after the tenth day of Fishri ensues the most solemn period of the year. Rosh Hashohah, day of remembrance, is celebrated with imposing ceremonies in the various synagogues. The penitential season which this day opens culminates on the 15th of September, which is the Day of Atonement – Yom Kippur – a day of a resolute fast and the holiest of the year. Stores will close on Friday night at sundown and remain closed for 24 hours.
September 1888

100 Years Ago
Record gross earnings from rail operations may be predicted for the Delaware & Hudson Company this calendar year says the Wall Street Journal. Present prospects and the earnings of the first half of the calendar year indicate also the largest net in the company’s history. For the six months ended June 30, 1913, railroad operating revenue was $11,716,339. This compares with $10,135,354 in 1912; $10,210,804 in 1911, and $9,628,645 in 1910. In each of the three preceding calendar years gross was larger in the second than in the first half. Should this prove the case in the current year, railroad operating revenue for 12 months will run between $23,500,000 and $24,000,000. In no previous calendar year has it exceeded $22,500,000. The company’s net after taxes for six months in 1913 was within $162 of $4,000,000, comparing with $3,078,106 in 1912 and $3,476,970 in 1911. The 1912 earnings were low on account of the strike, but the gain over 1911 exceeds 15 percent.
September 1913

80 Years Ago
Frank D. Briggs of Jamaica Estates, Jamaica, Long Island, who is visiting at the home of his niece, Mrs. W. Clinton Noble of 274 Chestnut Street, was a former stagecoach driver on mail and passenger lines some 58 years ago around Oneonta, Cooperstown and Morris. His driving time with a two-horse team was four hours between Oneonta and Hartwick. A few days ago, a friend drove him between the two points in 20 minutes by automobile. At the age of 16 in 1875 Mr. Briggs entered the employ of L.P. Richmond of Morris, who had the mail contract between Cooperstown and Oneonta. He worked for Mr. Richmond three years until the contract expired. Leaving Cooperstown at 5 o’clock in the morning, Mr. Briggs’ schedule required that he reach Hartwick at 7 o’clock, Mt. Vision at 8:30 and Laurens at 9 o’clock. The mail was due in Oneonta between 10 and 10:30. About the same time was made on the return trip, the stage leaving here at 1 o’clock and reaching Cooperstown at 6 o’clock.
September 1933

60 Years Ago
Oneonta will be following the trend already established in Utica and other northern regions of the state when many local grocery stores will raise the price of bread from 19 cents a loaf to 20 cents. The Spaulding Bakery Co., the sole bread manufacturer in Oneonta, will hike the wholesale price on its nine varieties of bread one penny, according to Herbert G. Price, Manager. Ward’s, distributor of Tip-Top Bread, raised the price one cent on Tuesday in the Oneonta area. No price announcement has been made by two other wholesale bread distributors in the Oneonta area, Curly Top Bakeries, Inc. and the United Baking Co. The manager of the Spaulding Bakeries explained the increase of the wholesale bread price by stating that the cost of materials and ingredients in making bread has mounted over the past year.
September 1953

30 Years Ago
The city’s new Wilber Park pool created a big splash in its first season of use and made it through the summer with just a few minor problems, Assistant City Engineer Bruno Bruni said. “The main pool held up fine,” Bruni said, adding, “The wading pool was the one that gave us the most problems.” The wading pool was closed twice because of a broken part in the filtration system and on another occasion when there was a problem with chlorination. The cost of constructing the pool was $433,200. Attendance over the past summer reached nearly 45,000. More than 1,000 people turned out on several extremely hot days and holidays. The Common Council voted to keep the main Wilber Park pool open on weekends past Labor Day on Saturdays and Sundays from 1 p.m. to dusk as long as weather permits. The wading pool was closed after Labor Day.
September 1983

20 Years Ago
Someday, people from all over the world will come to Oneonta to play soccer. They’ll play in a 10,000 seat stadium, or a larger indoor arena. They’ll stay in dormitories just a short walk from seven state-of-the-art playing fields and a huge museum honoring the world’s soccer legends. For 15 years, Oneonta’s Wright National Soccer Hall of Fame Campus was mostly talk, blueprints and the dream of a handful of local soccer enthusiasts. A promise of $4.5 million to build a stadium is an indication that other people believe in that dream. The state is also promising $250,000 to promote the Hall when World Cup games come to the U.S. next fall.
September 1993

10 Years Ago
The annual southbound migration of birds through the upper Susquehanna region and the Catskills has begun signaling the local Audubon Society’s hawk watch at the group’s sanctuary on Franklin Mountain near Oneonta. This season marks the 15th consecutive year of counting raptors at the site. “We get excellent numbers of red-tailed hawks and golden eagles,” said Andy Mason, conservation chair of the Delaware-Otsego Audubon Society. Franklin Mountain is considered one of the prime observation spots in the eastern United States for raptor species. The first wave of hawks is expected between September 10 and 21. Last year’s total count was 4,764 raptors of 15 different species, well above the 3,000 bird average.” Just the sight of one soaring eagle makes it all worthwhile,” Mason said.
September 2003

HOMETOWN HISTORY, May 31, 2013

HOMETOWN HISTORY, May 31, 2013

125 Years Ago
A letter to an editor: Woman’s True Rights – I will take “Woman’s Rights” for my subject. I am in favor of what I call woman’s rights, but am not in favor of voting. Think that woman’s rights is to take proper care of the household; to see that everything is in readiness for her lord and master and for his enjoyment. But as to woman going to the polls on Election Day and casting their votes with rough, burly men, I am greatly opposed to such. And again, if women were allowed to vote, we would have more quarrels, ten times more fussing over one election than we would otherwise have in ten years. What lady is there that would go in a crowd where the rougher men are drinking, swearing, cheering and quarreling over their candidates? I dare say not one. But such is the case at an election. Maggie.
May 1888

100 Years Ago
Postmaster General Burleson, now in charge of the postal affairs of the United States, is heartily in favor of one-cent letter postage. This he most emphatically affirmed in an address to a delegation of the National One-Cent Letter Postage Association which called upon him in Washington recently. He further said that he hoped to bring it about as soon as the revenues of the department could be adjusted. The difficulties that are in the way are that he believes the department should be put on an efficient, paying basis, with adequate compensation for employees and the conduct of the department in a business-like manner. Reasons given for the decrease to one-cent letter postage by the association are that lower postage will promote general intelligence, improve social relations of the people, advance the business interests and increase the volume of matter handled as to defray the costs of handling and transportation.
May 1913

80 Years Ago
Will Rogers Says – This man Roosevelt not only makes Congress roll over and play dead, but by golly he made this tough guy Hitler to bring sticks out of the water. Is there no end to this man’s cleverness? Course there is one thing about Europe – you can never believe ‘em the first time. They will agree to anything ‘til it comes time to sign up. This might be just the ideal time to stop a war, for nobody has anything to fight one with. Like disarmament, it’s not done for humanitarian reasons. It’s only done for economic reasons. The whole thing seems too good to be true. But, the whole world is changing, so maybe they are going to turn human.
May 1933

60 Years Ago
A Binghamton bank president yesterday predicted a “readjustment” of the American economy within the next few months, leading to an eventual recession. “But we must be optimistic, “Cornelius C. Van Patten, president of the Binghamton Savings Bank, told Oneonta Rotarians meeting at the Elks Club. “We have building up the ingredients for a business recession. The Monster of 1929 (excessive stock speculation) will come dressed in different clothes, and we won’t even recognize it,” he continued. “We’re due eventually for a recession. There is evidence that in the next few months there will be some readjustments in the economic picture. But I do not feel they will reach the same levels as in 1932. They should not and cannot. Excessive consumer credit should be watched carefully as should excessive home mortgaging.”
May 1953

40 Years Ago
James Seward of Colliersville, youthful Republican who lost a primary race last year to the late Harold C. Luther of Dolgeville, has declared himself a candidate for the seat in the 113th Assembly District left vacant when Assemblyman Luther died last month. “It is my hope that the Assembly District Convention will recognize my qualifications for the position as well as the fact I am well known in both Otsego and Herkimer counties. I pledge a vigorous campaign this fall and full-time representation for the citizens of the assembly district. Seward was graduated from Hartwick College on Sunday with a degree in Political Science. He is associated with the local Volkswagen agency. Seward says that he ran a successful 1972 primary campaign in Otsego County against Mr. Luther, obtaining 80 percent of the GOP vote in the county.
May 1973

20 Years Ago
The Oneonta area saw an unusually high number of rabies cases over the winter and now is the time for pet owners to prevent the spread of the disease by having their dogs and cats vaccinated. “This past winter we saw cases all winter long. Generally it slows down in the winter but this year it kept going all winter and I think it’s just increasing now,” said Robert Pierce, district director for the State Health Department’s Oneonta office. Last year New York State saw 1,716 confirmed rabies cases – the largest number of rabid animals ever recorded in a single state. To help reduce the risk of spreading the disease, Pierce urged all pet owners to get their dogs and cats vaccinated. “It’s extremely important that the pet is vaccinated at three months of age or older and that vaccination should be repeated after one year,” Pierce said.
May 1993

10 Years Ago
“Spiritual confusion and religious fanaticism have convinced increasingly large numbers of people that religion is irrelevant to the modern world. In its place stand man-made ideologies designed to save society from the evils under which it groans. Yet many of these ideologies have only served to deify the state, to subordinate the rest of mankind to one nation, one race, or class, to suppress ideas, or callously to abandon starving millions to the operations of a market system that is aggravating the plight of a majority of mankind, while enabling small sections to live in affluence undreamt of by our forebears. The time has come for an accounting.” (Quoted from “The Promise of World Peace, published by the Baha’i Universal House of Justice in 1985) I read it now and think about how timely it is to re-evaluate the role of religion and spirituality in governance. Marybeth Vargha.
May 2003

HOMETOWN HISTORY, April 26, 2013

HOMETOWN HISTORY, April 26, 2013

100 Years Ago
The lives of more than 100 miners were snuffed out shortly after noon today (April 23, 1913) when a disastrous explosion occurred in the Cincinnati Mine at the Monongahela Consolidated Coal and Coke Company at Finleyville, about 27 miles southeast of Pittsburgh. More than three score of workmen in the mine made thrilling escapes to the surface, crawling most of the time on their hands and knees through deadly gas fumes and over debris. Many of the men sustained burns. By 11 o’clock tonight 70 bodies of victims had been recovered having been located by rescuing squads of the United States Bureau of Mines and the coal company. The fire which followed the explosion has been subdued, it is said. From 76 to 78 men made their escape. Only a few of the miners who reached the surface were in a condition to talk. Seven foreign miners, who crawled from one of the entrances, all seriously burned, said the mine was “full of dead people.”
April 1913

80 Years Ago
An Englishman traveling through the United States jotted down some of the names of towns he passed through. In Mississippi they have Hot Coffee, Whynot, Possum Neck, Yoso, and Ten Mile; in Florida, Fifty-seven Mile, Three Sisters, Sonny Boy, Sisters Welcome, Jap Jay and Two Egg; in North Carolina, Hog Quarter Maiden, Matrimony, and Red Bug; in South Carolina, Six Mile, Sixty-Six, Ninety-Six and Nine Times; in Virginia, Ego, Pancake, Red Eye, Topnot and Swallow Well; in Arkansas, Fifty-Six, Poorman, Riddle, Self, Seldom and Smackover; in Louisiana, Blanks, Wham, Rufus and Uncle Sam; in Tennessee, Calf Killer and Gizzards; in Alabama, Java.
April 1933

60 Years Ago
Oneonta firemen proved their mettle early yesterday morning when an oil truck caught fire and threatened to blow the Chestnut and West Streets neighborhood to smithereens. With the rear of the huge truck completely aflame, firemen could have “played it safe” by fighting the blaze from a distance and hoping for the best. But they didn’t. Unmindful of their own safety, but fearful that some 4,500 gallons of oil might explode any second and wreck the vicinity they rushed right up to the truck and began spraying foam and chemicals. Few bystanders realized the seriousness of the dramatic duel between five men and a hot fire. “Anything could have happened. We might have been hurt or killed,” Chief Joseph Scanlon said. In the late 1930s, when another oil tanker caught fire at River and Main, Francis Wright drove it all the way to the Pony Farm crossing to avoid any explosion in a heavily populated residential area. Several years ago, another tanker hit icy pavement on Main Street and cracked into a tree. Its oil load spilled into the street. In each case, firemen risked death to save lives and property. “You’ve got to take chances,” Chief Scanlon said. “That’s our job. Thank God, we’ve never had difficulties.” Chief Scanlon’s crew included Frank Angellotti, Kenneth Hooks, Nicholas Gardner, and Howard Fields. Other Oneonta firemen include Edward McDonough, Lester Haines, Donald Rarick, Herbert Sweet, and James Gill.
April 1953

40 Years Ago
An interesting new book at the Huntington Library is titled “The Pact” by Orlando R. Petrocelli. This is a novel about a well-established Wall Street financier with a reputation for being ruthless in his business dealings. Although the Carlanas had become a premier family in the country, this man wanted to see one of his sons in the White House. If you liked “The Godfather” you’ll love “The Pact.”
Private Brenda Muehl, daughter of Mr. and Mrs. Joseph Muehl, Oneonta, has graduated from Marine Recruit Training, Parris Island, South Carolina. Private Muehl is a 1972 graduate of Oneonta Senior High School and enlisted in the U.S. Marine Corps for a period of four years.April 1973

30 Years Ago
Otsego County Republican Elections Commissioner Guy Maddalone has named Ann Paradis of Oneonta to succeed Violet Schallert as his full-time deputy commissioner and clerk in the Board of Elections office. Mrs. Paradis is the owner of R.E. Brigham Jewelers, Main Street, Oneonta. She is currently president of the Otsego County Women’s Republican Club and serves as vice-chairman of the Otsego County GOP Committee. She also coordinated last fall’s campaign to elect state assemblyman John McCann.
April 1983

20 Years Ago
Hartwick College students will try to set a new category and world record for the Guiness Book of World Records by making the “World’s Largest Group Hug” on Thursday evening. Hartwick students, faculty, staff and administrators, plus students from the State University College at Oneonta, and Oneonta residents are invited to participate in the event. After the group meets at Hartwick’s Astroturf Playing Field at 6 p.m. instructions on making the hug will be given. The activity is part of “Wellness Week,” Hartwick’s alternative to “Alcohol Awareness Week.” The latter is supported by a brewing concern that raises a conflict of interest. “Wellness Week” emphasizes six areas of life – physical, emotional, intellectual, spiritual, social and occupational.
April 1993

10 Years Ago
Hartwick College officials are expected to choose a successor to outgoing President Richard Detweiler from among three finalists by the end of next week. The search committee is expected to make its final recommendation to the Board of Trustees on Friday, May 2. Scheduled for today’s interview on campus is Richard P. Miller, Jr., vice chancellor and chief operating officer of the State University of New York. A graduate of Middlebury College, Miller was senior vice-president and chief operating officer at the University of Rochester from 1986 to 2000. He also serves as a trustee of Hobart and William Smith College. He is a decorated Vietnam War veteran.
April 2003

IN MEMORIAM: Bill Bowes, 89, Survived WWII Kamikaze Attack

IN MEMORIAM: Bill Bowes, 89,

Survived WWII Kamikaze Attack

An image from the kamikaze attack on the USS Santee, which Bill Bowes remembered all his days.
An image from the kamikaze attack on the USS Santee, which Bill Bowes remembered all his days.
William Bowes
William M.
Bowes

COOPERSTOWN – William Morris Bowes, 89, who witnessed a kamikaze attack on the USS Santee during World War II, died Tuesday afternoon, Feb. 3, 2015, at Fulton Center for Rehabilitation & Healthcare in Gloversville.

Born May 12, 1925, in Albany, he was the son of Thomas C. and Margaret (Dilts) Bowes.

Raised in Oneonta, he attended St. Mary’s Catholic School and graduated from Oneonta High School.  On May 8, 1943, he entered the Navy, serving his country during World War II as a radioman.  He was stationed onboard the aircraft-carrier USS Santee and was involved in many naval battles.

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