ONEONTA – Common Council is expected to hire seven new police officers – the largest class in memory – when it meets by Zoom at 7 p.m. Tuesday, Mayor Gary Herzig confirmed today.
After a one-year hiatus due to COVID, “we had one of the best and most successful recruitments, the highest-quality candidates,” the mayor said. “…While we only have five openings, we know some of our officers are being looked at by the state police, who can provide much higher pay and state benefits.”
ONEONTA – Word has been received that Dr. Reuben James, Ph.D. Ed.D., age 88, died Jan. 18, 2021. He was a SUNY Oneonta physics professor from 1960 to 1997, including 12 years as department chairman.
Reuben was valedictorian of his high school class, and graduated from SUNY Potsdam and St. Lawrence University. He then attended Clarkson, University of Pennsylvania, and SUNY Buffalo.
He taught science and math in a three Upstate high schools between 1954 and 1960. He joined SUNY Oneonta in 1960, taught physics, biophysics, solar energy and engineering, and headed the 3-2 Engineering Program with R.P.I. and R.I.T.
ONEONTA – After a bump in COVID positives at Hartwick College, President Margaret Drugovich is reporting that testing of every on-campus student and employee this week yielded only two positives (both students) were detected.
In addition, three positive cases were found among students who were already in required quarantine off-campus, she added.
ONEONTA – Bob Brzozowski, recently retired Greater Oneonta Historical Society executive director, was elected chairman of the board of FOTOT, the Friends of the Oneonta, at the annual meeting.
Other officers elected are Elizabeth Dunn, PhD, Dean of SUNY Oneonta’s School of Liberal Arts at SUNY Oneonta, as secretary, and Wendy Hunt, CPA at CADE, the Center for Agricultural Development & Entrepreneurship, as treasurer.
ONEONTA – Nancy Garufi, 83, who founded Tino’s Pizza with her husband, passed away Monday, March 1, 2021, at Fox Nursing Home.
She was born on July 12, 1937, in Frazzano, Sicily, the daughter of Lorenzo and Rosalia Frisenda.
At 18 years old, Nancy came to the United States and settled in Cold Spring, Putnam County. Her first job was at the dress factory there. She married Agatino “Tino” Garufi Sr. in August 1961. He predeceased her on June 27, 1998.
After meetings and discussions since last September, the City of Oneonta’s Town-Gown Task Force held its kickoff meeting Thursday over Vimeo. The effort is co-chaired by Common Council member Mark Drnek, who is running for mayor, and Melissa Marietta, SUNY Oneonta adminstrator. Both Mayor Gary Herzig and SUNY Oneonta President Dennis Craig are members.
ONEONTA – County Rep. Clark Oliver, D-Oneonta, who is also the county Democratic chairman, announced today he plans to run for a second term. His district includes Wards 1 and 2, encompassing the city’s East End and the colleges.
“I’m very grateful to the people in my district for placing their trust in me, and hope they will do so again,” he said.
Oliver said “the unexpected events regarding the pandemic” dominated his first term, as the county board sought to mitigate financial impacts. He said his next to will involve “continuing to mitigate the effects of COVID-19, transparently relaying informing to the public.”
OTEGO – Irma A. Ouimet of Otego, a native of Peru and Unatego Central School District teacher, passed away Feb. 23, 2021, in the ICU at Bassett Hospital from complications related to COVID-19.
Irma Alejandrina Villegas Ormachea was born in Calca (Cusco), Peru, and became a teacher serving young children in the mountains of Peru. Irma came to live in the U.S. upon her marriage to her husband Gene Ouimet in 1984.
ONEONTA – On Presidents’ Day the 15 of February 2021, at the age of 91, Thomas Eddy Hickey passed on at Cooperstown Rehabilitation and Nursing. By his side were his $1.99 pair of reading glasses, Ron Chernow’s 1,100-page history of President Ulysses S. Grant, and a photograph of his wife of 67 years, Jean O. Hickey.
A lifelong resident of Oneonta, Tom was born on 05 August 1929 and grew up at 18 Ford Ave. At the age of 12, part of Tom’s skull was removed to treat a brain abscess. He wore a protective helmet during the following year until a plastic plate was inserted to cover the opening. Tom was the youngest person on record to have survived this operation. Unfortunately, this remarkable outcome was when Tom’s father, mayor of Oneonta Dorr Sweet Hickey, died at the age of 44.