News of Otsego County

town of maryland

Edith May Sutton, 89; Maryland Woman Worked At GE, SUNY

IN MEMORIAM: Edith May Sutton, 89;

Maryland Woman Worked At GE, SUNY

Edith Sutton

MARYLAND – Edith May Sutton, 89, who worked for General Electric in Syracuse, then SUNY Oneonta, passed away on Aug. 11, 2020 at Cooperstown Center for Rehabilitation and Nursing

She was born May 28, 1931, in White Plains, the daughter of William and Edith (Coombs) Bates, moving to Otsego County as a girl. She graduated from Andrew S. Draper Central School, Schenevus.

‘Chateau de Weeds’ Turns Out To Be A Valued Habitat

‘Chateau de Weeds’

Turns Out To Be

A Valued Habitat

Patty, Joe Furlan’s Five Acres

On Crumhorn Now ‘Certified’

After Patty Furlan and her husband Joe bought 5 acres on Crumhorn Mountain, they were delighted when the National Wildlife Federation declared it a “certified wildlife habitat,” a property that helps fauna flourish. It includes this Fairy Garden. (Ian Austin/

By LIBBY CUDMORE • Special to

MARYLAND – When Joe and Elvira DiPeppi first bought the 5-acre property on Lichenburger Road, Town of Maryland, they nicknamed it “Chateau de Weeds.”

“Nothing was here,” said Patty Furlan. “But they did a lot of work, and they left me all these beautiful gardens and schematics.”

Furlan, who bought the house with her husband Joe in December, has a new title for it – National Wildlife Federation Certified Wildlife Habitat.

“It was our Easter present to the house,” she said. “A habitat is the best thing it could be.”

The Furlans’ “Chateau de Weeds” turned out to be a nurturing home for Mother Nature.

To be a Certified Wildlife Habitat, owners must provide natural food sources, clean water, cover and nesting/burrowing places for birds, butterflies, frogs and other wildlife to raise their young.

“It’s about promising to preserve the land for wildlife,” she said. “I got my love of birds and wildlife from my mother.”

In addition to registering, the couple made a $20 donation and received a plaque to put on their property.

Additionally, the gardens – the DiPeppis’ named them the Sacred Garden, the Holey Garden and the Sacrificial Garden – are part of the federation’s Million Pollinator Garden Challenge, aiming to provide habitat for the declining bee and butterfly populations.

“We call it the Holey Garden because of all the chipmunks,” Patty said. “And the Sacrificial Garden is for the deer!”

Patty Furlan shows off the plaque she and husband Joe received from the National Wildlife Federation
identifying their Crumhorn Mountain home as a Certified Wildlife Habitat.

The Sacred Garden, meanwhile, is fenced-off in the center of the lawn, with a fairy garden off to the side and a planned vegetable garden in the back.

“I’ve always grown herbs, but it was in a one-bedroom apartment,” she said.

The rest of the land is forest, including a shallow shale cave and a long-forgotten rock wall. “The rumor is that there used to be a brothel up here,” she said. “The madam would go into town, lure men up and then kill them. But that might just be lore.”

She did, however, note that she did find an old foundation. “I’d love to have some forestry students come out and mark trails” she said. “We love to travel to state parks: But this year, this will have to be our state park!”

The Furlans aren’t just letting their land grow wild. “We want to put in willow trees to help soak up some of the moisture,” the wife said. “I don’t only want to maintain the property; I want to add to it.”

Other plans include building bat boxes to help control insects, and providing additional food for nesting seasonal species, such as hummingbirds.

“They got here early at the end of their migration, and they just sat down and ate,” she said. “When I went to refill the feeders, they were waiting there, like they were stalking me!”

As her gardens grow, she wants to expand flower boxes down the driveway and surprises outward into the forest.

“I want to hang picture frames, or maybe invite some art students to do some sculptures or carve a stump into something,” she said. “I love the idea that you could just be out for a walk and there’s some art hidden in the woods, making the woods more interesting than they are already.”

And she hasn’t ruled out additional protections for the property, including forestry and conservation easements.

“We like being in the woods,” she said. “If you can’t give me the ocean, give me the trees.”

Ralph E. Pye, 96; World War II Air Force Veteran

IN MEMORIAM: Ralph E. Pye, 96;

Air Force Veteran Of World War II

Ralph Pye

SCHENEVUS – Ralph E. Pye, 96, Town of Maryland, a World War II Air Force combat veteran, passed away Jan. 11, 2020, with his devoted family at his side, at the state Veterans Home at Oxford, where he received outstanding care.

He was born March 29, 1923, in Dolgeville, son of the late Charles and Margaret (Hays) Pye.

Following high school graduation, Ralph enlisted with the military. He was a World War II Army Air Corps combat veteran, with the 459th Bomb Squadron, which conducted long-range bombing runs over Germany, Austria, Hungary, Romania and Yugoslavia from its base in Germany.  He was honorably discharged on Jan. 10, 1946.

Betty McNerney, 77; Moved To Town Of Maryland In 2008

IN MEMORIAM: Betty McNerney, 77;

Moved To Town Of Maryland In 2008

MARYLAND – Elizabeth “Betty” Ann McNerney, 77, passed away suddenly on Jan. 4, 2020, at Bassett Hospital.

She was born Jan. 19, 1942, in The Bronx, the daughter of Alfred and Mary (Fisher) Pfraff.

Betty married Brian J. McNerney on May 20, 1981, aboard a boat in the middle of Port Jefferson Harbor. They lived in Lake Kanasatka, N.H., for 20 years, before moving to the Town of Maryland, “coming home to family” in 2008.

Athena ‘Ann’ Mileski; Caring Maryland Woman Dies At 53

IN MEMORIAM: Athena ‘Ann’ Mileski;

Caring Maryland Woman Dies At 53

Ann Mileski

MARYLAND – Athena I. “Ann” Mileski, 53, who enjoyed cooking, gardening and laughing with friends and neighbors, passed away Nov. 29, 2019, at Bassett Hospital.

She was born June 2, 1966, in Cooperstown, the daughter of Richard and Irene (Decker) Beers.  She spent the majority of her life in the Otego area.

She married James B. Mileski on May 5, 2005 in Oneonta.

Most of Ann’s occupations involved caring for people, something she loved doing.

Joan B. Krpata, 88; ‘Nani’ Retired From County To Florida

IN MEMORIAM: Joan B. Krpata, 88;

‘Nani’ Retired From County To Florida

MARYLAND – Joan B. Krpata (Schnakenberg), affectionately known as “Nani,” passed away Aug.  27, 2019, at Bassett Hospital.

She was born Aug. 13, 1931, in Hollis, Queens. She was predeceased by her husband, Alfred, in September 1994.  Joan married Al in 1950 and they lived on Long Island until they moved to the Town of Maryland in 1971.  In 1992, after retirement, they moved to Boynton Beach, Fla.

Two Dozen Dead Cows Found on Town of Maryland Farm

2 Dozen Cows Dead

At Maryland Farm

Otsego County Sheriff’s deputies found more than two dozen dead cows in the barn of this Town of Maryland farm, on Route 7 right past Cooperstown Junction. (Ian Austin/

By LIBBY CUDMORE • Special to

The carcasses were found in this barn, some still tied up in their pens.

TOWN OF MARYLAND – The stench could be smelled for a mile.

More than two dozen dead cows in various states of decay were found in a barn on Route 7 in the Town of Maryland last night, after Otsego County Sheriff’s deputies were alerted to the conditions on the farm.

“It appears they all starved to death,” said Sheriff Richard J. Devlin Jr. “There was no food or water. It’s despicable.”

15 live cattle, as well as goats and pigs, were seized from the farm, and another 17 were put into the pasture while arrangements for relocation were made.

Carolyn Williams, 88; Longtime Farmer In Town of Maryland

IN MEMORIAM: Carolyn Williams, 88;

Longtime Farmer In Town of Maryland

Carolyn Williams

MARYLAND – Carolyn Beverly Ross Williams, 88, of Maryland, a lifelong farmer and lover of animals, passed away Feb. 11, 2019, at Fox Nursing Home, Oneonta.

She was born on Oct. 13, 1039.  A graduate of A.S. Draper High School, Schenevus; Carolyn married Thomas H. Williams in 1949 and spent time in Florida and Indiana before they returned to New York.


Scott W. Roland, 60, Maryland

IN MEMORIAM: Scott Roland, 60, Maryland

Scott W. Roland

SCHENEVUS – Scott W. Roland, 60, a Town of Maryland resident formerly of Niskayuna, died peacefully on Nov. 1, 2018.

A memorial gathering will take place on 11 a.m., Saturday, Dec. 29, at the Lewis, Hurley & Pietrobono Funeral Home in Oneonta, with a luncheon following.


Young Professionals Networking Mixer


NETWORKING – 6 – 8 p.m. Mixer featuring opportunity to sample beers, meet other young professionals, maybe win a door prize with Young Professionals Network of Otsego County. Cooperstown Brewing Company, 110 River St., Milford. 607-432-4500 or visit

RUMMAGE SALE – 9 a.m. – 4 p.m. Find good used clothing for women, girls, children, toddlers, babies, men, boys. Also, sheets, blankets, beach towels, bath towels, linens, curtains, kitchen utensils, toys, games, jewelry, more. First Presbyterian Church, 25 Church St., Cooperstown. E-mail joycejones@stny.rr.comor visit


Memorial Concert ‘Musical Moods’


MEMORIAL CONCERT – 7:30 p.m. Performance of “Musical Moods – Meditative to Manic” with Timothy Perry and Margaret (Pej) Reitz, performing on clarinet and piano. Free, open to public. RM 201 Fine Arts Center, SUNY Oneonta. 607-436-3419.

BOOK CLUB – 6 – 7 p.m. Discuss novel ‘Eleni’ by Nicholas Gage. Richfield Springs Public Library, 102 Main St., Richfield Springs. 315-858-0230 or visit

Maryland Women Arrested For Hit-and-Run

Maryland Women Arrested

For Milford Hit-and-Run

MILFORD – A Town of Maryland woman was arrested by the Otsego County Sheriff’s Department for fleeing the scene of an accident after she struck a Milford woman walking along the side of State Highway 7 near the intersection of County Highway 58A.

Mindy Stevens, 35, allegedly struck Evelyn Ruiz, 29, with her car after traveling into the road’s shoulder, where Ruiz was walking west with the flow of traffic, alongside Jermaine Weir, 21. Stevens then allegedly fled the scene without stopping.

Unfortunately, this sort of thing happens more often then people think. Too many people are injured in an accident that isn’t their fault. So when this happens, people will get in contact with a personal injury lawyer (like OKC personal injury lawyer) to help them get any compensation that they deserve. The issue with this accident though is not the fact that Ruiz was injured (although that is still a serious thing), it is that Stevens allegedly fled the scene without stopping, Ruiz is very lucky to be alive.

Thomas W. Eklund, 70; Vietnam Vet Built Cabinets, Homes, More

IN MEMORIAM: Thomas W. Eklund, 70;

Vietnam Vet Built Cabinets, Homes, More

Thomas W. Eklund

MARYLAND – Thomas W. Eklund, 70, whose creativity ranged from building houses and cabinets to building guitars, passed away at home after a long struggle with cancer on Jan. 13, 2018.

Thomas was born on Dec. 5, 1947 in Stamford, son of Robert and Pauline Eklund. Tom grew up in Davenport and graduated from Stamford Central School.  He then attended drafting school prior to joining the Navy and serving during the Vietnam War.

Thomas married Deborah Ingalls in 1999.

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