Boot drive collects money for Clarendon firefighter battling cancer

Photos by Tom Rivers Posted 20 September 2014
HOLLEY – Firefighters from three companies are out today collecting money in a boot drive for Jon DeYoung, the deputy fire chief at Clarendon who is battling colon cancer for the second time.

DeYoung, 49, as been an active firefighter with the Clarendon Fire Company for 25 years. In the top photo, his son Jon DeYoung Jr. accepts money from a motorist in the boot drive at the intersection of routes 31 and 237.

Firefighters form Clarendon, Holley and the Fancher-Hulberton-Murray fire companies are out collecting funds for DeYoung, who is currently receiving treatments at the Cleveland Clinic.

DeYoung Jr. thanked the other firefighters in the East Battalion of Orleans County for rallying on behalf of his father.

“In the East Battalion we stick together,” DeYoung Jr. said.

His father has been a long-time leader for the Clarendon Fire Company, earning respect and admiration in the community, said Fire Chief Bob Freida.

“He’s an outstanding person who wouldn’t think twice about helping someone else in the community,” Freida said.

Holley firefighters had the idea for the boot drive today. In this picture Harris Reed, Holley’s assistant chief, accepts a donation.

Harris Reed, front, and Holley firefighter Jim Papponetti work together at this intersection on Route 31.


return to top of page


Chamber honors Bruce Krenning for lifetime achievement

Former fruit grower has served many organizations

Bruce Krenning


“People respect him and trust him. He is not afraid of an unpopular decision if it’s the right thing to do.”

-- Dean Norton, president of New York Farm Bureau


By Tom Rivers, Editor Posted 20 September 2014
ALBION – It started when he was about 30. Bruce Krenning joined the Lyndonville Board of Education. For the past four decades he has volunteered his time and talents, helping organizations meet challenges and prepare for the future.

After Lyndonville, Krenning joined the Albion Board of Education. He and his family moved from Lyndonville to Howlett Road in Albion so he could operate his own fruit and hog farm. His BOE colleagues picked him to serve as Albion’s president.


He was active with the Orleans County Farm Bureau and about a decade ago served as vice president of the state-wide organization with 30,000 members.

Community members also reached out to him to serve on the board for Orleans Community Health, the parent organization of Medina Memorial Hospital. He is in his third year as chairman, helping the organization through a time of change.

“He has given us the leadership that we needed,” said Patricia Fox, a hospital board member for nine years. “He is a phenomenal person when it comes to running a board. He has led us through a very difficult time.”

The hospital, like many rural health care organizations, has struggled financially. Other small towns have seen their hospitals close or downsize.

File photos by Tom Rivers
Bruce Krenning, board chairman for Orleans Community Health, is pictured in June 2013 with Diane Bradley, regional clinical coordinator, and Mike Lieb, temporary CEO. Dolores Horvath would later be named OCH’s chief executive officer.

Orleans Community Health last year changed its chief executive officer, opened a new health care center in Albion and affiliated with Catholic Health in Buffalo, giving Medina access to specialists and other medical and surgical services.

“We’ve had some extremely difficult decisions to make,” Fox said. “Bruce is up for the challenge. He listens and he is thinking all the time. He draws us all in and we’re determined.”

The Chamber of Commerce is honoring Krenning tonight during its awards banquet for “Lifetime Achievement” for his service to the community.

Krenning, 71, grew up in Lyndonville and earned an economics degree from Cornell University. He and his wife Diane have four grown children and 12 grandchildren. Their son Adam is the agriculture teacher and FFA advisor for Albion Central School.

Krenning said he has been blessed with great mentors who encouraged him. He cited George Lamont of Albion, he gave Krenning a job when he was 21. Krenning also worked for Dennis Kirby and David Kast before starting Krenning Orchards in 1987.

He grew apples and peaches and also raised hogs. Francis Kirby and Pierson Root also were great mentors, Krenning said. Root, in particular, encouraged Krenning to become involved in Farm Bureau. Root told Krenning he had “a God-given talent to get along with people,” Krenning recalled.

Krenning was elected to the state-wide board, representing several Western New York counties in the mid to late 1990s. That was back when the fruit sector didn’t have much of a voice on the state board. Krenning impressed Farm Bureau so much that they elected him vice president.

They did that after he was forced to exit farming. A Labor Day hail storm swept through the area in 1998, and decimated Krenning’s apple crop. Krenning and several other growers in Orleans County were forced out of business.

But Krenning wouldn’t give up on the agriculture industry. He saw the weakness of insurance programs for fruit growers. He teamed with Albion fruit grower Chris Watt and Larry Meyer, head of the Farm Service Agency in Orleans County, to craft a fruit insurance program that would become federal policy. Fruit growers now have protection should another hail storm wipe out their crop.

Dean Norton, president of the New York Farm Bureau, said Krenning was “monumental” in getting the NYFB to support the insurance protection and secure backing from the federal government.

“He took those lemons after the hail storm and used it as an educational experience to help the farming community,” Norton said. “People respect him and trust him. He is not afraid of an unpopular decision if it’s the right thing to do.”

Since he left farming, Krenning has worked as an insurance agent with the Southcott Agency in Albion. He serves farmers and homeowners. One farmer in Niagara County recently received a $900,000 check, money that kept the farmer in business.

“The Labor Day storm tested our faith and resolve,” Krenning's wife Diane said during an interview at their home. “You can either give up or move forward. In some ways it feels predestined because Bruce has been able to help other farmers get crop insurance. It’s changed the lives of so many people since then.”

As an insurance agent, Krenning works with farmers running varied operations. He remains closely connected to the industry.

Norton, an Elba resident, often calls Krenning, looking for his opinion.

“He is one of those people I continue to talk to and pick his brain,” Norton said. “He has been a mentor to me.”

Krenning said the roles on the boards are often demanding, especially the latest effort to make sure the hospital and Orleans Community Health remain viable for years to come. He praised his fellow board members for their determination to healthcare in the county.

“I’ve been fortunate that people trusted me and with that trust I can build relationships and with those relationships you can get things done,” Krenning said.

Bruce Krenning, president of the board of directors for Orleans Community Health, attended the Treasure Island fund-raiser last November.


return to top of page


Patriot Trip reaches DC, and vets see war memorials

Provided photos Posted 19 September 2014
The seventh annual Patriot Trip, which includes about 100 people, reached the nation’s capitol today and many local veterans and their friends and family toured war memorials.

In the top photo, the group is pictured in front of the Vietnam War Memorial. The trip is arranged by State Assemblyman Steve Hawley, right, and his staff.

Hawley is pictured at the National Museum of Marine Corps with Rose Schlegel, left, Robert Ballard, Dorothy and Ed Morgan of Murray, and Hawley's chief of staff, Eileen Banker of Albion.

Vietnam veterans Linda Andersen and Nancy Speed are pictured at Women's Vietnam Memorial with Hawley.

Assemblyman Steve Hawley and Don Nagle, a World War II veteran, are pictured with a TBM Avenger 39 plane. Nagle was an air crewman responsible for radio-radar. He helped pilot with bomb bays and tracked torpedoes to let pilot know when to drop bombs.

U.S. Rep. Chris Collins joined the group at the World War II Memorial in Washington, D.C.

Ed and Lesley Carney tour the American History Museum. The trip continues until Sunday.


return to top of page


Red Cross provides aid to family after Albion fire

Photos by Tom Rivers
A fire this morning on Phipps Road ruined most of a home, forcing a family with five young children to seek temporary shelter.

By Tom Rivers Posted 19 September 2014
ALBION – A family with five children lost most of their possessions after their home was badly damaged in a fire today at 13576 Phipps Rd.

Lisa and Christopher McGuire lived at the house with their five children as well as Mrs. McGuire’s aunt. No one was hurt in the fire, but they lost nearly all of their material belongings, said the couple’s niece, Chelsea Christopher.

The Red Cross is providing temporary shelter for the family at Dollinger’s Motel. Christopher is seeking clothing donations, as well as diapers, wipes and food. People are welcome to contact her at 585-590-1246 by text or through her Facebook page if they want to help.

The fire started in a stove and spread through the house, with flames reaching the second floor.


return to top of page


Sportsman puts out sign in favor of SAFE Act

Former bait shop owner in Gaines says SAFE Act deserves public support

Photos by Tom Rivers

Al Capurso and his wife Christine have two signs in their front yard on Route 279 in Gaines that show their support for the state’s gun control legislation known as the SAFE Act.

By Tom Rivers, Editor Posted 19 September 2014
GAINES – About a week ago Al Capurso put up two lawn signs, both in support of the SAFE Act.

That might not seem newsworthy, but Capurso might be the first Orleans County resident to make such a public declaration of support for the state’s controversial gun control law. Capurso sees many “Repeal the Safe Act” signs, and he knows all of the elected town, village and county boards in Orleans have passed formal resolutions, calling for the law’s repeal.

Many of the law’s opponents see it as an attack on the Second Amendment’s Right to Bear Arms. Capurso doesn’t see it that way.

“I don’t believe the framers of the Constitution foresaw a citizens’ arms race where they have to get bigger and faster guns to feel safe,” Capurso said today. “A citizens’ arms race is not the Second Amendment.”

Capurso, a long-time sportsman who owned a bait shop for more than 20 years, said the anti-Safe Act voices don’t acknowledge the good with the law, mainly a restriction against magazines with more than 10 bullets. (The law, passed in January 2013, first limited it to seven bullets, but was overruled in a court challenge to a 10-bullet limit.)

Capurso also worked in the mental health field, retiring as an intensive case manager at the Orleans County Mental Health Department. He supports background checks and the pistol permit process. He supports the 10-bullet limit so madmen can’t fire off numerous rounds before reloading.

“Extremist” vices have dominated the SAFE Act discussion locally, Capurso said. He would like to see the public consider other viewpoints, and respect people with differing views.

Paul McQuillen of Buffalo is the Western New York coordinator of New Yorkers Against Gun Violence. He sent Capurso one of the signs in support of the SAFE Act. Capurso hand-painted the other one, which says “Keep S.A.F.E.”

McQuillen says a “silent majority” supports the SAFE Act and efforts to rein in gun violence. He gives out many of the organization’s signs, although he said they are often stolen from front lawns.

He pointed to a Sienna College poll in March that showed the majority of the state by a 2 to 1 ratio backs the SAFE Act. In New York City, the law has about 75 percent of the public’s support. In Upstate New York, a slight majority opposes the law, according the poll.

Capurso would like to see the public, including local elected officials, offer constructive criticism of the law, looking for ways to make it better rather than roundly rejecting it.

“There needs to be another side of this story told besides the extremist point of view,” Capurso said. “I’m not seeing a voice of moderation out there. The pendulum is swinging so far to the extreme. They’re afraid the government might come get their guns and that’s nonsense. They’re afraid the bogeyman will come get them.”

Capurso also took issue with the anti-Safe Act message that proclaims those supporters as “true patriots.” Capurso considers himself a “patriot” who supports the Second Amendment and “common sense” gun laws.

“I respect people’s rights to have signs in their yard,” he said. “I would defend that to that hilt. But I don’t have to agree with them. That’s what being an American is about: You have the right to speak out.”


return to top of page


Depot Street gets a fresh top in Albion

Photos by Tom Rivers Posted 19 September 2014
ALBION – Todd Sargent, a Village of Albion Department of Public Works employee, runs a roller over new asphalt that was down this morning on Depot Street in the village.

Village of Albion and Orleans County highway crews were out today paving Depot Street. This street was added to the village inventory last November. It runs along a railroad depot, north of the railroad tracks between West Academy and North Clinton streets.

Greg Rosato of the County Highway Department fills the county’s paver with road material.

return to top of page


Stove fire spreads at Albion home on Phipps Road

Photos by Tom Rivers Posted 19 September 2014 11:38 a.m.
ALBION – A stove fire spread at an Albion home late this morning, causing extensive damage to the house at 13576 Phipps Rd.

The dispatch call first went out at 10:24 a.m. and several mutual aid calls were issued after that.

Albion, Barre and Fancher-Hulberton-Murray firefighters were soon on the scene. No additional information is available.


return to top of page


Orleans Dems keep leadership team

Staff reports Posted 19 September 2014
The Orleans County Democratic Committee is keeping its leadership team. The Democrats met on Wednesday and re-elected Jeanne Crane to serve as the party chairwoman.

Other leaders, all re-elected unanimously, include: Tracy Jennings, vice chairwoman; David Green, vice chairman; Agnes Recco, secretary; Sandra Walter, treasurer; and Janice Grabowski, elections commissioner.

The Democratic Committee is looking for members for town committees in Ridgeway, Yates and Murray.

The group also will be seeking candidates for next year’s town and county elections.


return to top of page


One-room schoolhouse in Barre had 59 students, 1 teacher in 1894

By Bill Lattin, Orleans County Historian Posted 19 September 2014
BARRE – These are the students of the South Barre School, District No. 9, pictured in 1894.

This was a one-room cobblestone schoolhouse located on the old Oak Orchard Road at the Culver Road. The building is now a residence.

This picture was taken on a “field trip” to Albion as it was done in the photographer’s studio.

Here, teacher Miss Capitola Grinnell is posed with her 59 scholars. Yes, that’s 59!
Looking them over we can see first graders to eighth grader. Just imagine trying to teach various subjects to different grade levels all in one room.

Miss Grinnell must have had good control and the students no doubt helped each other. What a novel idea!


return to top of page


Local photographer captures tree frogs in their element

Photos by Brandon Blount-Carpenter Posted 18 September 2014
CARLTON – Brandon Blount-Carpenter, a local wildlife photographer, has been intrigued by gray tree frogs the past couple years. He has pictures of them in different colors, including the light green one in the top photo and the gray one below.

“If you handle one it will literally change color right in front of you,” he said. “When they are excited they turn that bright green color.”

Blount-Carpenter sent in these photos after seeing the one on the Orleans Hub of a frog camping out along an office wall outside at the offices for Orleans Hub and The Lake Country Pennysaver at 170 North Main St.


Blount-Carpenter took the top photo in the spring 2012, with the second photo taken this past spring. Both were taking outside by his house in Carlton.

This picture was taken last September.

Blount-Carpenter also has rescued some gray tree frog tadpoles and put them in garden ponds.


“On warmer nights in the spring summer and fall, you can hear them singing. It's like a chorus out here at night.”


return to top of page


Hub has an unusual visitor

Photo by Tom Rivers Posted 18 September 2014
ALBION – A visitor at the office for Orleans Hub and the Lake Country Pennysaver created a stir today. Many of the long-time employees at 170 North Main St. can’t recall a tree frog (if that’s what this is) camping out on the wall of the building.

It’s been an interesting year with wildlife on the move with the all of the Snowy Owl sightings in the winter and the two black bears spotted this summer in the county. Now you may find a tree frog nestled at your workplace.

Update (8:54 p.m.): A reader sent a message to say this frog is either a gray tree frog or a Cope's gray tree frog. The only way to tell for sure is to listen to the frog's call. The Cope's gray tree frog has a faster-paced and slightly higher-pitched call than gray tree frog.


return to top of page


Patriot Trip includes a stop in Gettysburg

Provided photos

Staff reports Posted 18 September 2014

State Assemblyman Steve Hawley is leading 100 veterans and their family members on the seventh annual Patriot Trip. The group had a busy day of travel, but did stop in Gettysburg.

Veterans, including John Hucknall of Albion, sitting in center, visit Little Round Top at Gettysburg. These rocky hills are the site of an unsuccessful assault by the Confederate troops against the Union on July 2, 1863.

This bronze statue shows Gen. Kemble Warren, the Union general who fought off the Confederates during the Battle of Gettysburg. He is known as the “Hero of Little Round Top.”


The Patriot Trip is heading to the nation’s capitol to see the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier at Arlington National Cemetery for the laying of the wreath ceremony for Korean veterans, the Pentagon, and a Sept. 11 Memorial. The group will also meet with Hawley’s son Cooper, an attorney with the Republican National Committee.


return to top of page


Health Foundation gives out $14,500 in Mega Drawing

Provided photo
Jim Moody, director of the Orleans Community Health Foundation, is pictured with Wilson Southworth, right, in front of Medina Memorial Hospital. Southworth was the $10,000 grand prize winner in the Mega Drawing.


Staff reports Posted 18 September 2014
MEDINA – A Medina resident is the $10,000 winner of the Mega Drawing, a fund-raiser for Orleans Community Health Foundation.

Wilson Southworth won the grand prize. The Foundation also awarded a $2,000 prize to Heather Schrader of Medina, $1,000 to Pat Kennedy of Medina, $1,000 to Betty Rogowski of Medina and $500 to Robert Welch of Brockport.

Proceeds from the Mega Drawing will go towards upcoming renovations of the emergency room at Medina Memorial Hospital.

The Foundation is working on its Treasure Island fund-raiser on Nov. 1 at Hickory Ridge Golf and Country Club in Holley.


return to top of page


Firefighters make quick work of fire in Medina

Photos by Tom Rivers Posted 18 September 2014
MEDINA – A fire in the laundry room in the back of a house at 584 East Ave. was quickly brought under control by firefighters just before noon today.

The fire caused minimal damage and remains under investigation, said Todd Zinkievich, Medina fire chief.

There was a lot of smoke coming from the back of the house and the fire was starting to move up the wall before it was knocked down by firefighters, Zinkievich said.

The house is owned by Cliff Fidanza. Besides the Medina Fire Department, firefighters responded from Shelby and Lyndonville.


return to top of page


Medina native helps Fredonia with new science complex

SUNY Fredonia
A lecture hall in the new Science Complex at Fredonia State College will be named the Kelly Family Auditorium after a gift to the project from Medina native, Dr. Jeffery Kelly.


By Tom Rivers, Editor Posted 18 September 2014
MEDINA – A Medina High School graduate who has become a prominent organic chemistry researcher is helping his alma mater, Fredonia State College, build a new science complex.

Dr. Jeffery Kelly graduated from Fredonia in 1982. He then earned his doctorate in organic chemistry at the University of North Carolina in 1986.

He heads The Kelly Laboratory at The Scripps Research Institute, one of the world's largest independent, not-for-profit organizations focusing on research in the biomedical sciences. The SRI employs about 3,000 people in La Jolla, Calif. and Jupiter, Fla. Kelly works out of the campus in La Jolla.

Dr. Jeffery Kelly

Kelly also owns two pharmaceutical companies, said his mother, Janice Kelly-Mack of Medina.

“He’s done very well,” she said. “He’s worked very hard.”

Kelly returns to Fredonia and Medina three or four times a year to visit family and friends and to attend Fredonia board meetings. He is on the college’s board of directors.

He will attend the Oct. 17 ribbon-cutting for the new 92,000-square-foot science complex, a $60 million project. Kelly donated to have the 120-seat auditorium named for his family. The Kelly Family Auditorium is among many rooms in the new science center that won support from alumni and friends of the college in Chautauqua County.

The Kelly Laboratory discovered the first regulatory agency-approved drug that slows the progression of a human amyloid disease, and has made other breakthroughs.

Kelly was recognized with a Fredonia Alumni Distinguished Achievement Award in 2000. He has won numerous awards for his research, including in 2012 when he was the winner of the Murray Goodman Memorial Prize for Biopolymers and the Ralph F. Hirschmann Award in Peptide Chemistry from the American Chemical Society.

For more on Kelly, click here.


return to top of page


Residents can drop off unused prescriptions at 3 locations

Staff reports Posted 18 September 2014
ALBION – Orleans County residents are welcome to drop off unused prescriptions at three locations on Sept. 27 as part of the “National Prescription Drug Take-Back Initiative.”

The three locations will accept the prescriptions form 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. The locations include:


• Orleans County Public Safety Building – 13925 State Route 31 – Albion
• Holley Fire Department – 7 Thomas Street – Holley
• Medina Fire Department – 600 Main Street – Medina


This is a collaborative effort with the U.S. Department of Justice – Drug Enforcement Administration, the Orleans County Health Department, and the Genesee/Orleans Council on Alcoholism & Substance Abuse.


This is a great opportunity for the public to surrender unwanted or expired medications for safe and proper disposal, Sheriff Scott Hess said.


“Events such as these have dramatically reduced the risk of prescription drug diversion and abuse, as well as increasing awareness of this critical public health issue,” he said.


return to top of page