The sanctuary at First United Methodist Church in Oneonta was filled with inspiring words, social commentary and song this afternoon as crowds gathered to celebrate Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.’s 91st birthday. The event, hosted by the Oneonta NAACP, featured over a dozen speakers and performers including Yolanda Bush, seen above with Rich Mollen, as she sings “Rise Above,” written by Robin Seletsky and dedicated to the Oneonta NAACP. Mayor Gary Herzig, inset right, was also among the speakers, where he praised the NAACP and the Oneonta Police Department for their leadership in civil rights issues. He continued, encouraging vigilance, saying there was still work to do even in a “progressive and diverse” City like Oneonta: “Here in Oneonta, an individual visited our DMV and was told, ‘We cannot serve you,’ and was told to go to Cooperstown. In the year 2020 we are hearing this! As Dr. King said, ‘Injustice anywhere is a threat to justice everywhere.’ Oneonta must be open and welcome all persons.” Herzig’s reference was to the “Green Light” Law, where the state Legislature directed the issuance of driver’s licenses to illegal aliens; because of the special equipment and training required, county Clerk Kathy Sinnott Gardner has centralized processing those license applications at the main office in Cooperstown. (Ian Austin/AllOTSEGO.com)
ONEONTA – Henry L. Quackenbush, Jr., a New York Telephone employee who enjoyed retirement at his Afton Lake camp, passed away at home on Dec. 30, 2018.
He was born Oct. 5, 1936, in Oneonta, the son of Henry and Eloise (Congdon) Quackenbush.
Hank was a graduate of Oneonta High School, Class of 1955. He married Carolyn Bossio on Aug. 16, 1959, at St. Mary’s Church in Oneonta.
He retired from NY Tel in 1991.
After retirement, he and Carol purchased a camp on Afton Lake where he enjoyed swimming, fishing, spending time with friends and family, and relaxing on the deck.
RICHFIELD SPRINGS – George P. Mravlja, Jr., 48, a lifelong dairy farmer, passed away suddenly Nov. 14, 2017, at Bassett Hospital.
He was born Jan. 4, 1969, in Cobleskill, the son of George and Elizabeth (Medved) Mravlja.
George grew up in Worcester on the family farm, a calling her pursued. He graduated from Worcester Central School.
ONEONTA – The Oneonta Area Branch of the NAACP has announced that a $500 scholarship will be awarded this year. All high school seniors and entering first-year college students living in the Oneonta area are encouraged to submit their application and essay entitled “Saluting Greatness: The Legacy of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.”.
This scholarship program began in 1995. The purpose of this scholarship is to recognize students who have demonstrated the ideals and principles of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. in their schools and communities. The Scholarship committee seeks students with exemplary leadership skills who have championed the cause of cultural awareness, diversity and harmony. All students, regardless of ethnic origin and gender, will be considered during this competitive process.
ONEONTA – The NAACP hosted the 2016 Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. birthday celebration at the Unitarian Universalist Church this afternoon.
The celebration included inspirational speakers and musicians with a special talk by Hartwick College Professor Harry Bradshaw Matthews, who spoke on Dr. King in the context of “The Freedom Journey.”
The afternoon included an anticipated perennial: The recital of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.’s “I Have a Dream” speech by Reginald Brunson, Hobart.