News of Otsego County

Franklin News

Customer Appreciation Day Helps Beat The Heat

Customer Appreciation Day

Helps Beat The Heat

It’s always the perfect time for ice cream at the Polar Bear Homemade Ice Cream parlor! Above, Joseph Dalton, who has known owners Heather and Michael Ross for over 40 years, get a cone of soft-serve with his grandchildren Daniel and Olivia Jagielo, from Macy Jordan, Franklin during The Polar Bear’s customer appreciation day. (Ian Austin/
MORGAN: Nothing To Fear – But Flu Itself


Nothing To Fear

– But Flu Itself

Tom Morgan, the retired Oneonta investment counselor and national syndicated columnist, resides in Franklin.

Are you frightened by this virus?

You should be. Consider these scary figures please.

Consider up to 45 million Americans infected by this virus.

Yes, 45 million!!! With three exclamation points!

Consider from 350,000 to 560,000 Americans so sick with it they have to be hospitalized. And consider from 18,000 to 46,000 people dying from the virus. This, according to our Center for Disease Control.

These figures describe the situation in the U.S. The World Health Organization offers global figures that should frighten you more. Figures such as 3 to 5 million people severely ill with the virus. And from 250,000 to 500,000 dying from it.

Wait! It gets worse. Recently the CDC and other prestigious organizations upped the world numbers to 650,000 deaths.

Such staggering numbers justify the flight cancellations. And the zillions of masks. We can hardly blame countries for closing their borders. Or for quarantining cities.

There is no mystery why stock markets around the world would crash. Looking at these numbers, we welcome the news that responsible countries and states have declared states of emergency.

Before you stick your head in the oven, let us consider an additional fact. The virus I refer to is not the current coronavirus. It is our annual flu virus. The one for which so many of us cannot be bothered to get a shot.

Repeat. I am not here writing about the latest virus. The one that has turned the world upside down. No. I write about the ho-hum annual flu and its season.

Yes, up to 45 million Americans were sick with the flu this season. That is, between last Oct. 1 to Feb. 22 this year. And, yes, up to 45,000 of us died from that flu.

We barely noticed. Well, our big media barely noticed. And so we, not informed, took the flu season in stride. We barely noticed that those strides took us over and past 45,000 dead folks.

We and our media took little note of this calamity because it was nothing new. The figures are daunting every flu season. For instance, look at 2017-18. Up to 45 million flu patients. Just in the U.S. Up to 1.4 million people hospitalized. Just in the U.S. Up to 95,000 Americans died from influenza.

The media did not scream these figures at us. Politicians did not blame their opponents for them. Nobody blamed Trump for the 95,000 deaths. Nobody shutdown anything while this contagion raged.

We lost 95,000 Americans to one virus in the 2017-18 flu season and as a nation we yawned. Thus far we have lost fewer than 100 lives to coronavirus, and all hell has broken loose.

What is going on to cause this? A few things.

One is that this is a new virus. The world’s disease experts did not know much about it. Therefore they could not predict where it would go. Nor how quickly. Nor could they predict how deadly it would be. Or not be.

By the time they got a decent look at it, it had the appearance of a bomb. That is because the secretive Chinese kept the world and their own people in the dark about the outbreak in Wuhan. Until it was too late to contain it. Had they been open and transparent from the start the world might never have had to hit the panic buttons.

There is a further big factor in this. We should realize that FDR’s warning lives on because it was the truth.

Yes: The only thing we have to fear is fear itself.

Why did this fear grow so quickly and so great amongst us? Did our medical researchers proclaim the end of the world was nigh? Did they fling about predictions that millions would perish from this flu? Did they proclaim that various leaders screwed up? And thereby condemned millions to illness and death?

Nope. Most top medical guys were pretty cautious. It was Big Media that hyped this epidemic. It was Big Media that flooded our screens with urgent news. It was Big Media that wheeled out the so-called experts to warn us this virus was deadly and dangerous and scary and horrendous.

They did it for the clicks. The more they scared us the more we clicked on their news. And the more money they hauled in from their advertisers.

This virus is no small matter. We should not turn our back on it. Our experts need to learn much more about it. We should take it seriously. Especially if it surges way beyond where it is at the moment. But thus far it pales when you compare it with our annual flu epidemic.

Big media disagree. And the more they disagree, the more money they make. They get paid to scare the hell
out of us.

From Tom…as in Morgan.



Dog Fighting Suspected




Just 24 hours after being rescued from horrific conditions in Franklin, a young pit bull is happy to get some affection from Stacie Haynes, executive director of the Susquehanna SPCA. (Libby Cudmore/

By LIBBY CUDMORE • Special to

One rescued dog had a staple in her nose that was allegedly left in so long, the skin began to grow around it.

SIDNEY – Erin Insinga, shelter director, Delaware Valley Humane Society, described the scene of a rescue in Franklin as “like something out of a horror film.”

“I have never seen animals in such conditions of pain, torture and neglect,” she said through tears. “These dogs were stacked like pieces of furniture in a dark room.”

Cages were soaked with vomit, urine and feces. 19 dogs – 17 pit bulls and two German shepherds, ranging from 9 weeks to six years old – were emaciated, dehydrated and covered with wounds old and new.

“Based on what we saw and what our veterinarians said in their exams, we believe these animals were the victims of dog fighting,” said Stacie Haynes, executive director, Susquehanna SPCA.

Missing Sidney Man Found Dead in Franklin

Missing Sidney Man

Found Dead in Franklin

By JENNIFER HILL • Special to

FRANKLIN  – The body of a 51-year-old Sidney man who went missing two months ago was discovered by utility line employees clearing branches in a wooded area of the Town of Franklin Wednesday, Delaware County Sheriff Craig S. DuMond announced in a press release today.

The man was identified as Byron J. Furman and determined to have died “as a result of natural causes.” “He probably had a heart attack of some sort of medical emergency that led to his death,” Sheriff DuMond said.

Troopers Locate Missing Five Year Old

Troopers Find Destiny,

Missing Franklin Child

State troopers located a missing 5-year-old this afternoon after she was reported missing while walking her dog in the Town of Franklin..

FRANKLIN – A missing 5-year-old and her dog were found by state troopers after the child was reported missing in the Town of Franklin earlier this morning, according to a press release from Troop C.

What’s The Matter With NY? It’s Just Spending Too Much


What’s The Matter With NY?

It’s Just Spending Too Much

By TOM MORGAN • Syndicated Columnist

What is the truth about New York State? Why do we lose so many good people? Why do our businesses struggle, especially Upstate? Why do our schools, cities and towns struggle? Why are parts of our infrastructure dilapidated?

Our politicians offer us a blizzard of reasons. Every government department explains.

Here is a truth that cuts through it all: New York State spends too much.


Lyall H. Sage, 86; State Trooper

Guarded Rockefeller At Otesaga

Lyle Sage

FRANKLIN – Lyall H. Sage, 86, a state trooper who served on Nelson Rockefeller’s detail when the governor visited The Otesaga, passed away peacefully, Wednesday, Feb. 6, 2019, at the Veterans Home in Oxford.

He was born on March 21, 1932, in Sayre, Pa., the son of Edna Sage. He graduated from Towanda High School in June 1950.

He married Roberta Moody Sage in Dushore, Pa., on May 3, 1952.

Two Arrested For Making Threats Against Schools

Two Arrested For Making

Threats Against Schools


By LIBBY CUDMORE • Special to

FRANKLIN – A 21 year old man was arrested and charged with making terroristic threats against Franklin Central School, just days after a shooting at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, Fla. left 17 dead.

Aiden M. O’Day, Otego, was arrested by State Police Sunday, Feb. 18 after he allegedly made terroristic threats against Franklin Central School. Day was arrested without incident, and the investigation determined that there was no danger to the school or public. O’Day was arraigned in the Otego Town Court and remanded to the Otego County Jail.

We cooperated with law enforcement during the investigation, and we are grateful to the New York State Police for the swift action in making the arrest,” wrote Superintendent Brad Zillox. “Please know that the district is taking any threat seriously and will not hesitate to take action as needed. We ask that everyone be extremely mindful and cautious regarding their comments and/or communications.”

Jim Crosby, 31; Dies In Car Accident In Franklin

IN MEMORIAM:  Jim Crosby, 31;

Dies In Car Accident In Franklin

Jim Crosby

DELHI – James  Cullen Crosby, 31, of Delhi passed away suddenly on Friday evening, Dec. 29, 2017, from injuries sustained in an automobile accident in Franklin.

Jim worked for FORDO in Oneonta.

Friends and relatives are invited to call on the family from 5-7 p.m. Wednesday, Jan. 3, at MacArthur Funeral Home, 134 Main St., Delhi, where a celebration of life will be at 7 p.m.

Former Congressman Gibson Draws Fans To Book-Signing

Former Congressman Gibson

Draws Fans To Book-Signing

Retired 19th District congressman Chris Gibson signs a copy of his new book, “Rally Point,” for Dean Beams of Schenevus. Looking on are Bill Glockler, Middlefield, three times Gibson’s Otsego County campaign manager, and his wife Laurie. (Jim Kevlin/

By JIM KEVLIN • Special to

Gibson signs a book for Tyler Gregory after praising the Franklin Central junior for his commitment to tending the formerly decrepit Ouelette Cemetery. With Tyler is mom Laura.

ONEONTA – You could almost hear his former constituents’ sighs of relief to hear former Congressman Chris Gibson being, well, just Chris Gibson at a book-signing for his new book, “Rally Point: Five Tasks to Unite the Country and Revitalize the American Dream” this evening at Black Oak Books in Southside Mall, Oneonta.

During remarks to the gathering, an attendee praised Gibson for promising to retire after three terms, and then doing so.  As a military man (a retired colonel), he replied, “What we say is what we mean. When you are in combat, you have to keep your word.”

Elizabeth ‘Sue’ Avery, 98; Worked In Publishing In NYC And Locally

IN MEMORIAM: Elizabeth ‘Sue’ Avery, 98;

Worked In Publishing In NYC And Locally

Elizabeth “Sue” Avery

ONEONTA – Elizabeth Huddleston “Sue” Avery, 98, who worked for newspapers and publishing in the New York metropolitan area and locally, passed away Nov. 9, 2017.

She was born Dec. 30, 1919, in Greenwich, Conn., to Thomas Oakley Woolf II and Judith Griffen Woolf. She was a 1938 graduate of Greenwich Academy.

She was a reporter for the Greenwich Time daily newspaper and worked as editor and proofreader thereafter, latterly for McGraw-Hill Book Company and Cambridge University Press.

Carmela Marner Steps Down As FSC Director

Carmela Marner Steps Down

As Franklin Stage Director

Carmela Marner has announced that she is stepping down as executive director of the Franklin Stage Company, the free theater troupe she nurtured into a much-anticipated part of the summer. (Ian Austin/

FRANKLIN – Carmela Marner, the Franklin Stage executive and artistic director who started the theater company with her parents two decades ago, announced moments ago that she is stepping down this season.

“I am deeply grateful for the opportunity I have had to nurture young people in this precious environment, to collaborate with extraordinary artists, and to grow our far-reaching community,” she wrote in an email to the community. “For 20 seasons, there was nothing like looking down from the upstairs dressing room to see you all gathering below on the lawn and porch.”

She has served as the executive director for 11 of the theater’s 20 seasons and has performed in many of their shows, most recently, directing “We 3” last summer.

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