ONEONTA – Rich was born on August 7, 1943 in Oneonta, NY to Leslie and Lucille (Mulford) Elderkin. He was raised on the family farm in West Laurens. It was there where he learned his strong work ethic and mechanical skills (“There were no holidays on our calendar”).
His father died when Rich was 16, which left him running the 100 head family farm together with the hired man, his mother and “little brother” John- not to mention attending school and playing football. Eventually they decided to sell and Rich joined the Air Force on May 21,1963. (“I went to see the army recruiter who wasn’t on duty that day. Lucky for me, the Air Force recruiter was there and I could not have made a better choice for my life’s work”).
Laura Lee Rous, 38, a life long resident of Otego, Laurens and Oneonta passed away recently.
Laura was born on August 18, 1983, her fathers 25th birthday, in Oneonta, NY to Andrew and Valerie Rous. She was predeceased by grandparents Agnes and Leo Rous, John Hilsinger Sr, Winifred (Charlie) Varin, her father Andrew Rous, step father Brian Allmendinger, a fiancé Joshua Ellsworth, an uncle Tracy Rous, and a cousin Lucas Rothenberger.
Laura attended Unatego School, and was employed in a variety of jobs, including fast food, home health care, and All Star Village where her son currently works. She also enjoyed four wheeling.
“I’m very excited to be here and in this new capacity. We are still moving in and getting a used to everything here. I understand we will need to make some changes but we are ready!” said Darren Reisberg, newly appointed 11th president of Hartwick College.
“We were in Chicago for 22 years, so it’s great to be back on the east coast. My family is from New Jersey so they are happy and appreciate we are back too!”
Mr. Reisberg has an impressive resumé. He’s been a vice president for Strategic Initiatives and Deputy Provost at The University of Chicago, He was also an executive director at The University of Chicago Institute of Politics.
COOPERSTOWN – James E. Dow, whose dedication and service to the Cooperstown area as a licensed funeral director spanned a period of over 40 years, and service to Otsego County as a coroner spanned a period of 30 years, passed away peacefully in the early morning hours of Thursday, July 14, 2022, at his home in the Village of Cooperstown with his beloved wife, Debbie, at his side. He was 74.
Jim was born on November 10, 1947, in Oneonta, the son of George E. Dow, Jr. and Helen (Sturges) Dow. When Jim was 10 his father’s position with New York Telephone brought about a move to Stamford. In 1961, another transfer brought the family to the Village of Cooperstown, and deep roots were planted. Throughout those formative years, Jim enjoyed spending his free time with his grandparents on their farm at Sturges Corners in North Kortright. Valuable life lessons and skills were learned from Grandma Frances and Grandpa Ray, and he enjoyed sharing tales of his escapades and adventures there.
Oneonta resident Marie Hegeman was looking for a song appropriate for a Valentine’s Day 2014 Facebook posting to her husband, Tom, and remembered a song called “The Lady’s In Love With You” she knew would fit the bill. She tracked down the song and its performance on YouTube – a clip from a February 1964 episode of “The Judy Garland Show” – performed by Bobby Cole and his trio.
“I posted it and spent the rest of the day watching it,” she said. “I’d sneak off during work to watch it again. It’s amazing.”
As music fans do when suddenly obsessed with an artist new to them, she dug as deeply as possible to find more from Mr. Cole and his trio – but his catalog of recorded music was small. He nonetheless was a favorite among some of music’s greatest names – he was musical arranger for CBS-TV’s “The Judy Garland Show” and musical director on her last tour in 1967. And no less an authority on the subject than Frank Sinatra proclaimed Bobby Cole his “favorite saloon singer” during Mr. Cole’s residency at Jilly’s in New York City.
Ms. Hegeman left glowing comments on line about the video, vivid and sincere enough to attract the attention of the late Mr. Cole’s Florida-based daughter, Stephanie Edmonds. The two began exchanging e-mail messages and, as the friendship developed, so, too, did a handful of other ideas. They formed the Upper East Side Jazz Company in 2021 to preserve and promote Bobby Cole’s work and, in December, found a home for two dozen of his recordings.
Change doesn’t fall into place without a catalyst, and for Oneonta Mayor Mark Drnek’s vision to bring 1,000 new residents to the city during his first term to work, he says he knows he needs to work with the community’s experts to solve the problem of where all those incoming residents will live.
At the June 6 meeting of the Oneonta City Council, Mayor Drnek answered questions about his plan to ‘reboot’ the city’s Housing Commission through a collaborative ad-hoc committees charged to tackle a series of issues fundamental to expanding Oneonta’s available housing stock and prepare it for a future that could include not only hundreds of new, well-paying jobs, but also a changing marketplace for student housing.
“I’ll say it again to the people of Oneonta,” Mayor Drnek said in a conversation with The Freeman’s Journal / Hometown Oneonta. “We need you.”
The City of Oneonta Police Department says it is investigating the May 30 murder of a 24-year-old Oneonta man, identified as Kaleb J. O’Neill.
According to a press release issued at noon on May 31, “At 8:10 p.m. the Oneonta Police Department received a 911 call of a male being stabbed in the alleyway of 6 Dietz Street. Officers and Oneonta Fire Emergency Medical were dispatched to the area. Upon arrival, responders located Mr. O’Neill in the alleyway, suffering from multiple stab wounds. Responding members administered aid and he was subsequently transported to A.O. Fox Hospital by Oneonta Fire Department Ambulance and Paramedics, where he was later pronounced deceased.
“The New York State Police (NYSP) Forensic Identification Unit and the NYSP canine unit were called to the scene and an attempt to locate the suspects was undertaken but revealed no other information at this time. There is little information in regard to the suspect(s) in this case but it is not believed to be a random attack. As such, there appears to be no ongoing risk to public safety.
“This case remains under investigation by the Oneonta Police Department in conjunction with the the NYSP Oneonta Bureau of Criminal Investigation and Major Crimes Unit.
“Anyone with additional information on this investigation is asked to contact the Oneonta Police Department Detective Division at (607)-432-1111.”
The parade lines up at 9 am in front of Foothills at 24 Market Street in Oneonta and steps off at 10 am sharp. Police Chief Douglas Brenner (retired) will announce the parade from Muller Plaza on Main Street. Parade will process down Main Street and continue to Neahwa Park, where a commemorative ceremony will take place at 11 am. City Council member Len Carson will introduce the speakers in Neahwa Park and the Reverend Randy Palada will offer a benediction.
The American Legion has invited John and Joan Brooks to serve as Grand Marshals for the 2022 Memorial Day Parade in recognition of their service to this country and notably to this community.
“We are so incredibly honored to be chosen as Grand Marshals,” John Brooks said. “We were taken aback when David Hayes notified us! We love this community and love giving back.”
The committee welcomes additional parade entries; any community group, charitable organization or place of business is welcome to march. Please phone David Hayes at 607 353-9000 or simply be present at Foothills on Monday, May 30, at 9 in the morning.
HISTORY CENTER OPENING – 6:30 – 8:30 p.m. Celebrate the grand re-opening of the renovated history center featuring new exhibit ‘Small Community, Big Ideas.’ Evening will include opening remarks, exhibit tours, and live entertainment. Free, open to the public. Beer & wine will be served. Oneonta History Center, 183 Main St., Oneonta. 607-432-0960 or visit oneontahistory.org
BLOOD DRIVE – Noon – 5 p.m. Donate through May 19 for chance to win a travel trailer camper that sleeps eight. Quality Inn, 5206 St. Hwy. 23, Oneonta. 1-800-733-2767 or visit www.redcrossblood.org
SHALLOTTE, N.C. – Veronica La Verne M. (Mike) Hawver, 80, went home to be with the Lord, on April 26, 2022. She passed away peacefully in her home following a brief illness.
Mike was born March 2, 1942 in Perth Amboy, NJ the daughter of Michael and Verne (Franko) Nemyo.
Mike married James L. Hawver, her husband of 54 years, in February, 1963 at the Air Force Chapel at McGuire Air Force Base in New Jersey.
Mike was predeceased by her husband, Jim, and her parents, Michael and Verne (Franko) Nemyo.
Mike is survived by her two sons, James M. Hawver of Shallotte, NC and Scott F. and his wife Beverly (Braumuller) Hawver of Eva Beach, HI, two grandchildren Evan Scott Lee and Kyalimpa Faith, her brothers Ronald Nemyo and Joseph Nemyo of Pennsylvania. She was predeceased by her foster granddaughter Ronella Pasquale.
Wayne L. Roseboom, 83, of Oneonta passed away peacefully on Sunday, May 1, 2022 at the Cooperstown Center. Wayne was born on August 28, 1938 in the Town of Butternuts; a son of the late Leon M. and Marion E. (Emerson) Roseboom.
Wayne was a well-liked custodian for many of Oneonta’s businesses and was last employed by the Black Oak Tavern.
Wayne’s family will have a service in the future at a date to be determined.
ONEONTA – Carl Lusins, longtime Oneonta resident, died in Albany, New York on Monday April 25th. He was 53. He is survived by his children, Alex Lusins, 25, and Catherine Lusins, 20, his mother, Anna Marie Lusins and his siblings, Gillian Lusins, Dr. John Lusins III, and Matthew Lusins. Carl’s beloved father, Dr. John O. Lusins, and sister, Noelle Lusins, predeceased him in 2001.
Carl was born in New York City on September 6th, 1968. His family lived in Bronxville until he was 15. Carl attended Bronxville Elementary School and Middle School, and he meet his lifelong best friend, Chris Long, and formed many other close bonds.
Carl moved to Oneonta with his family and soon became a vibrant part of the community. He graduated from Oneonta High School in 1987. He was an avid hockey goalie and played in Binghamton throughout high school. He loved throwing parties and driving around Oneonta in his Mazda RX-7 – a love of cars stayed a constant in his life – and was always willing to help his friends and family. He was a graduate of New England College. A highlight of his college years was a semester spent abroad in England. During that year, he traveled throughout Europe and he was in Berlin, in 1989, when the Berlin Wall fell, a memory he treasured.