News of Otsego County

Bassett medical Center

In Memoriam Robert B. Schlather, Esq., 75 May 3, 1946 – April 27, 2022

In Memoriam

Robert B. Schlather, Esq., 75

May 3, 1946 – April 27, 2022

Robert B. Schlather, Esq.

COOPERSTOWN – Robert Bernard Schlather, Esq., Cooperstown lawyer, CPA and philanthropist, died Wednesday afternoon, April 27, 2022, at Bassett Medical Center in Cooperstown as a result of a brain tumor diagnosed in June 2020. He was 75.

Born May 3, 1946, in Olmsted Falls, Ohio, Bob was the second eldest of thirteen children of Bernard Paul Schlather and Helen Virginia Bilskey. Raised in Elyria, Ohio, he graduated in 1964 from Elyria Catholic High School. He went on to attend and graduate magna cum laude with a BA in Accounting from Saint Vincent College in Latrobe, Pennsylvania, and earned his Juris Doctorate and graduated cum laude from University of Notre Dame Law School in South Bend, Indiana. In addition, he was awarded a Certificate in English and American Law from the University of London as part of the Notre Dame Law School curriculum. He successfully completed the New York State Bar and Certified Public Accountancy Exams in 1971 and commenced work in the tax department of Price Waterhouse & Co, in both New York City and London.

On July 14, 1973, Bob married his best friend, Karen Ruth Hammer in a ceremony at Saints Philip and James Roman Catholic Church in St. James, Long Island. They moved to Cooperstown in 1976.

In Memoriam Lloyd H. Johnson, 83 April 24 1938 – January 30, 2022

In Memoriam

Lloyd H. Johnson, 83

April 24, 1938 – January 30, 2022

Lloyd H. Johnson

ONEONTA – Lloyd H. Johnson, 83, passed away January 30, 2022 at Bassett Medical Center in Cooperstown from complications of Covid and underlying health conditions.

He was born April 24, 1938 in Halcott Center, the son of Milbert and Edna (Simmons) Johnson.

He married Rosanne Brickwedde on November 17, 1956 at St. Mary’s Church in Oneonta. Together they owned and operated the family dairy farm, Fairlane Farm on Delhi Stage until the early ‘80’s. Lloyd then drove truck until he was stricken with Guillain-Barre Syndrome. After a grueling recovery he went to work at Ouleout Golf Course in Franklin for close to 30 years.

HAPPENIN’ OTSEGO: Learn About The Animals Around Us 01-31-22

Learn About The Animals Around Us


NYS MAMMALS – 6:30 p.m. Youth are invited to learn about the different mammals that live around us in NY State. Open to 4-H members, Leaders, other key volunteers, any youth who wants to learn. Free, registration for online program required. Presented by Cornell Cooperative Extension. 607-547-2536 or visit

Bassett’s Dr. LeCates ‘transitioning away’ from Network leadership

Bassett’s Dr. LeCates ‘transitioning away’
from Network leadership

Bassett Medical Center President and Chief Operating Officer Dr. William LeCates is moving on, announcing to colleagues today (January 12) his plans to transition away from his leadership role at Bassett Healthcare to pursue a new opportunity in New York City.

Bassett Healthcare Network Director of Marketing and Communications Angie Blair said Dr. LeCates will remain with Bassett as its Northern Region Executive through April 30, 2022, to ensure “continuity of leadership as we move forward.”

In Memoriam Elizabeth J. Arnold, 70 December 1, 1951 – January 7, 2022

In Memoriam

Elizabeth J. Arnold, 70

December 1, 1951 – January 7, 2022

Elizabeth J. Arnold

ONEONTA – Elizabeth J. Arnold, 70, a life-long resident of the Oneonta area, died Friday morning, January 7, 2022, at Bassett Medical Center in Cooperstown.

She was born December 1, 1951, at A.O. Fox Memorial Hospital in Oneonta, one of eight children of Charles and Rose E. (Sisson) Banks. She was raised on the Banks family farm in Oneonta.

In recent years she resided at Robynwood in Oneonta, until moving to Robinson Terrace Rehabilitation and Nursing Center in Stamford.

She will be remembered for always caring about others and for having a big heart.

Photo: Bassett hosts candle light remembrance of the victims of COVID-19

Photo: Bassett hosts candle light remembrance of the victims of COVID-19

Bassett Medical Center held a candle lighting service of remembrance on December 2 to honor COVID-19 victims and healthcare workers. Family, friends, and colleagues gathered in-person and via Zoom to attend the service, which took place at the United Methodist Church in Fly Creek 109 candles were lit in tribute to every person who has passed away at Bassett Medical Center due to COVID-19 through October 2021.
Chaplain Gerald Paciello, M.Div., manager of Spiritual Care and Volunteer Services at Bassett Medical Center, opened with a message of welcome from Dr. Tommy Ibrahim, President & CEO of Bassett Healthcare Network. “It’s impossible to find someone who hasn’t been touched in some way by the COVID-19 pandemic,” he said in part. “For those of us who have lost people to this terrible virus, it’s been even more tremendously challenging to navigate the many ways the pandemic has changed our world.” (Michael Forster Rothbart/The Freeman’s Journal)
HAPPENIN’ OTSEGO: Candlelight Vigil 12-2-21

Candlelight Vigil


CHRISTMAS – Be an Angel. Sign up to give the gift of Christmas to local families in need with this years Angel Tree Program. Visit for details.

VIGIL – 7 p.m. Bassett will hold a candlelight vigil in remembrance of the patients who have died of COVID-19. Family is invited to attend in person. All others are invited to attend by Zoom. Presented by Bassett Medical Center. 607-547-3626 or visit

John J. Pohli, 75 June 26, 1946 – October 7, 2021

In Memoriam

John J. Pohli, 75

June 26, 1946 – October 7, 2021

John J. Pohli

OTEGO – John J. Pohli, a lifelong area resident, passed away Thursday afternoon, October 7, 2021, at Bassett Medical Center in Cooperstown. He was 75.

Born June 26, 1946, at the A.O. Fox Memorial Hospital in Oneonta, John was a son of John J. and Margaret (Sorocco) Pohli. After graduating from high school, he attended Mohawk Valley Community College where he earned an associate’s degree in electrical technology. For 30 years he was employed with NYSEG, and retired as an electrical supervisor in 1990.

On September 2, 1966, John married Lillian J. Pearce in Oneonta. They enjoyed living in their log cabin in the countryside of Otego.

Richard Frederick Smith August 21, 1943 – September 13, 2021
Richard Frederick Smith

In Memoriam

Richard Frederick Smith

August 21, 1943 – September 13, 2021

OAKSVILLE – Richard Frederick Smith, Jr., a life-long area resident and long-time employee of Remington Arms, passed away following a lengthy illness Monday afternoon, September 13, 2021, at Bassett Medical Center in Cooperstown. He was 78.

Born August 21, 1943, at Mary Imogene Bassett Hospital in Cooperstown, he was one of four children of Richard Frederick Smith, Sr. and Dorothy Arlene Roseboom Smith. He attended Cooperstown schools and was a member of the Cooperstown High School Class of 1961.

On March 17, 1962, Dick married Patricia Ann Edwards in a ceremony at the Cooperstown Methodist Church, and they went on to enjoy a total of 60 wonderful years together.

Following in the footsteps of his grandfather and father, Dick proudly served his country with the United States Army from 1962 until 1968. Upon receiving his honorable discharge from the military, he returned to the Cooperstown area, and was employed for 34 years with Remington Arms in Ilion, first as a forend sander and then as an inspector.

Stephen James Pawlowski Feb. 4, 1976 – Jun. 19, 2021

In Memoriam

Stephen James Pawlowski, 45

Feb. 4, 1976 – Jun. 19, 2021

Stephen J. Pawlowski

COOPERSTOWN – Stephen James Pawlowski, 45, passed away unexpectedly Saturday, June 19, 2021.

He was born February 4, 1976, in Mount Kisco, the youngest of six children of Walter and Roberta (Stiles) Pawlowski. He attended school in Somers, until the 9th grade, when he and his family moved to Mooresville, North Carolina. After graduating from Iredell High School, he attended North Carolina State University and graduated with a degree in forestry. He later attended Binghamton University where he received a degree in nursing, and then graduated from the University of Scranton where he completed the nurse anesthesia program. Since moving to Cooperstown in 2011, Stephen has worked as a Certified Registered Nurse Anesthetist at Bassett Medical Center.

Since 2010 Stephen had been serving his country in the US Army Reserves as a Captain.

Charlotte Perry Koniuto, 80 Sept. 29, 1940 – Jun. 13, 2021

In Memoriam

Charlotte Perry Koniuto, 80

Sept. 29, 1940 – Jun. 13, 2021

MILFORD – Charlotte Perry Koniuto, who served as the Otsego County Clerk and was an active member of the Republican Party, passed away unexpectedly late Sunday night, June 13, 2021, at Basset Medical Center in Cooperstown. She was 80.

Born Charlotte Jean Perry September 29, 1940, at home in the Town of Minden near Canajoharie, she was a daughter of Melvin David Perry, Sr. and Dorothy (Madison) Perry.

In 1950 Charlotte and her family moved to the Cooperstown area, where she attended a one-room schoolhouse in Bowerstown until it consolidated with Cooperstown Central School. After graduating from Cooperstown High School with the Class of 1958, she attended the University at Buffalo, and then returned to Cooperstown to work for the next seven years for Attorney Robert C. Tennant.

Dolgeville Couple Parents To First Bassett Baby Of  ’21

Dolgeville Couple Parents

To First Bassett Baby Of  ’21


Allan Cotton

COOPERSTOWN – Otsego County has welcomed the area’s first baby of the new year. 

‘Allan Cotton, son of Mallory Diederichs and Scott Cotton of Dolgeville, was born – a week early –  at 9:31 a.m. New Year’s Day at Bassett Hospital.

Allan weighs 9 pounds, 3 ounces and is 22 inches long.

Allan has four siblings: Michael, 12, and Karman, 3, at home and two older siblings, Zachary in Missouri, and Michaela in North Carolina.

HAPPENIN’ OTSEGO: Cooperstown Reflects Series ‘On Racism In Healthcare’ 10-28-20

Cooperstown Reflects Series

‘On Racism In Healthcare’


COOPERSTOWN REFLECTS – 7 p.m. Join panel on Zoom to for ‘Cooperstown Reflects on Racism and Healthcare’ discussion with Reggie Knight, Spine Care Institute; Dr. Subashini Daniel, Attending Surgeon, Cardiac Surgery; Dr. Jim Dalton, Director of Medical Education, Bassett Healthcare; Vince Solomon, Psychiatric Social Worker; and Candice Shannon, Social Psychologist/Sociologist. Presented by Cooperstown Village Library. Visit to register.

VOTE – 9 a.m. – 5 p.m. Early Voting open. Meadows Office Complex, 140 Co. Hwy. 33W, Cooperstown. Visit for info.


Showing ‘Yesterday: What If No One

Remembered The Beatles But You?’


FILM SOCIETY – 7 p.m. Cooperstown film society presents ‘Yesterday: What if no one remembered the Beatles but you?’ (2019) with long time rock tour manager John Draper welcoming all to the third season of Film Society. Cooperstown Village Library, 22 Main St., Cooperstown. Visit




Chester S. Kucharski

COOPERSTOWN – A “vulnerable adult” was reported missing after he was last seen leaving Bassett Medical Center in Cooperstown in January.

Chester S. Kucharski Jr, 67, Oneonta, was last seen leaving Bassett around 3:50 p.m. on Friday, Jan. 25. He was reported as a missing vulnerable adult and the Police Department is attempting to check his welfare.

He is 5’11, 150lbs, Gray Hair, Hazel Eyes. Police say he had been evicted from his residence in Oneonta and had been transported to Bassett Hospital. He was discharged from the hospital and has not been seen since.

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