Ortt and State Senate back legislation for veterans

Press Release, State Sen. Robert Ortt Posted 29 May 2016
ALBANY – As we prepare to honor Memorial Day, New York State Senator Rob Ortt (R-North Tonawanda) and the Senate Majority passed seven measures last week dedicated to improving the lives of veterans. The bills pay tribute to their service to the state and country.  


Senate Committee Member on Veterans, Homeland Security and Military Affairs Senator Ortt said, “My Senate colleagues and I are committed to supporting our veterans in every way that we can. Our veterans fought to defend our values, beliefs and freedoms, and it’s important to show that we are forever thankful to them by helping to make their lives more meaningful and successful. The legislation we just passed does exactly that.”


Senator Ortt’s bill (S3408) allows any veteran who has served this nation to be awarded a high school degree based on their knowledge and experience gained while in service. Current law, under Operation Recognition, allows World War II, Korean, and Vietnam veterans to receive their high school diploma. This legislation would expand this program to cover all veterans.


Other legislation passed Tuesday that would benefit veterans includes:


S6577A sponsored by Senator Terrence Murphy (R-Yorktown) allows New York State income tax filers to contribute to the Veterans’ Home Assistance Fund;


S2245C sponsored by Senator David Carlucci (D-Rockland/Westchester) gives school districts the option to offer real property tax exemptions to eligible veterans;


S1200A sponsored by Senator Kathleen Marchione (R-Halfmoon) provides an increase in the rates of annuities payable to veterans and surviving spouses of veterans from $1,000 to $1,500;


S2263 sponsored by Senator Joseph Griffo (R-Rome) allows those with military service and  honorable discharge to attend classes at the State University of New York (SUNY) and the City University of New York (CUNY) on a tuition-free audit basis; and


S870 sponsored by Senator Michael Ranzenhofer (R-Amherst) permits each county, city, town, or village to adopt a local law to authorize veterans who have not been discharged or released from a current, subsequent military service to receive an additional veteran real property owner tax exemption.


The Senate also gave final passage to S3137C, sponsored by Senator Tom Croci (R-Sayville), which requires the State Division of Veteran Affairs to maintain a fact sheet on their website containing contact information for all Veterans Integrated Service Networks in New York and for the U.S. Veterans Health Administration to help veterans better navigate the health care system.


All bills have been sent to the Assembly, except S3137C, which will be sent to the Governor.


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Residents urged to show caution in rabies season, especially near bats

Nola Goodrich-Kresse and Kristine Voos, Genesee-Orleans Public Health Education Team Posted 29 May 2016
Rabies Alert! Stop! and Think! Do NOT touch! It can kill!


Any mammal is able to get rabies, it is very important to get your pets vaccinated and not to touch or handle any stray or wild animals including bats.


Bats are very busy this time of year looking for nursery sites to give birth to baby bats (pups). Take note:

• If a bat gets into your house it is important to NOT let it go, especially if it may have had contact with a person or pet.

• Call your local health department (see phone numbers below) for guidance on whether the bat needs to be tested.

• Do NOT touch the bat with your bare hands. Bats have razor sharp teeth and a sleeping person may not even be aware they were bitten.

• For more information about how to safely capture a bat without damaging the brain:
o Visit any of our county Health Department web sites - visit the environmental page,
o Call your local Health Department,
o Or go to the New York State Department of Health web site by clicking here.


Stay away from ALL wild, stray, feral animals and do NOT feed them. If a wild or stray animal, including bats has contact with people and pets / livestock it is important to safely catch them for testing without damaging the head.


Although all mammals are at risk, cats are especially an issue. Many people are encouraging cats around their homes by feeding stray and feral cats. The problem is these animals are living outdoors and are not protected from wild animals. Cats are natural hunters and will chase after bats and other animals that are known to carry rabies.


If you choose to feed stray / feral cats, you are legally responsible to get them vaccinated as well. According to the New York State Public Health Law (Section 2140.6), “Owner” shall mean any person keeping, harboring, or having charge or control of, or permitting any dog, cat or domesticated ferret to remain on or be lodged or fed within such person’s house, yard, or premises.


Indoor pets, both cats and dogs are also at risk, so make sure your indoor animals’ rabies vaccinations are current. By avoiding contact with stray or wild animals, saving the bat / animal that may have had contact with humans / domestic animals, and reporting an incident to your local Health Department, we may be able to avoid unnecessary medical treatment that averages over $3,000 per person.


Take note of the upcoming free anti-rabies immunization clinics for dogs, cats and ferrets. The animal must be three (3) months of age or older. Additional clinics can be found by checking the web sites or calling your local Health Department. Check your county web site for pre-registration instructions. Each dog, cat, and ferret must be accompanied by someone who can control it:


• Orleans County: Saturday, August 27, 2016 at the Shelby Highway Department, 4062 Shelby Basin Rd, Medina. The clinic runs from 9 a.m. to 11:30 a.m. You must arrive no later than 11:30 to ensure that you will be served. Clinic staff reserves the right to decline service to late (after 11:30) arrivals.

• Genesee County: Thursday, August 18, 2016 at the Genesee County Fairgrounds, 5031 East Main St., Batavia. The clinic runs from 4:00 p.m. – 7:00 p.m. Dog, cat and ferret vaccinations are free for Genesee County residents. A $5 voluntary donation per dog, cat, or ferret, is appreciated to offset clinic expenses. Non-county residents must pay a mandatory $5 fee for each dog, cat, and ferret immunized.


Here is contact information on local health departments:

• Orleans County Health Department at: 589-3278 or check out our website at: www.orleansny.com/publichealth. Visit Facebook and Twitter: the user name for both is OrleansCoHealth.

• Genesee County Health Department at: 344-2580 ext. 5555 or visit their website at www.co.genesee.ny.us/departments/health/index.html. Visit Facebook at Genesee County Health Department and Twitter at GeneseeCoHealthDept.


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Fire destroys Barre home on Burns Road

Photos by Tom Rivers Posted 28 May 2016 11:30 p.m.

BARRE – Firefighters, including a member of the Shelby Volunteer Fire Company in front, work to put out a fire Friday night at 5581 Burns Rd.


The location is in southern Barre near the Genesee County line.

The initial dispatch call went out at 9:13 p.m. Firefighters from several departments in Orleans and Genesee counties responded to the scene. The house is owned by Allen and Constance Whipple and located at the end of a long driveway.


The house was fully engulfed in flames and bystanders said they could see the orange flames from the road.


No one was injured in the fire, and the Whipples' dogs were able to get out.

These Barre firefighters work to put out hot spots at the back of the house.


In addition to Barre, firefighters responded from Albion, Elba, East Shelby, Shelby, Medina, Ridgeway and Oakfield.

The fire happened on a section of the road without fire hydrants. Firefighters went to a hydrant on Johnson Road to fill fire trucks with water, which then hauled it to dump tanks to be pumped to the scene.

Water is hauled and then put in the dump tanks. Several fire companies brought tankers and pumpers to fight the fire in a remote part of Barre.

Jason Watts, a past chief for the Shelby Volunteer Fire Company, is at the smoky scene after a house was destroyed by a fire.


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Gravestone coming for Medina man killed in World War I

Photo by Tom Rivers

Debbie Morse is pictured near a spot at Boxwood Cemetery where a gravestone will soon be installed for her great-uncle, Jay David Hebner, who was killed in World War I.

By Tom Rivers, Editor Posted 28 May 2016
MEDINA – Debbie Morse remembers her late father, Don Cook, mentioning one of his uncles had been killed in World War I.

Cook was a prominent local photographer who served in World War II. He died in 2004. Morse recently reflected on her father’s uncle. She didn’t know much about Jay David Hebner. But she has been researching him.

Provided photos
Jay David Hebner, a Medina native, was killed in France in 1918, serving in the U.S. Army during World War I.

Hebner grew up in Medina and lived at 920 Gwinn St. He was born in Le Roy and enlisted in Company F, the 74th Infantry of the New York Guard that trained out of the Armory in Medina. Hebner enlisted on Dec. 4, 1917, and was discharged on April 26, 1918. Morse isn’t sure why he was discharged, but she found documents showing he joined the Army on April 3, 1918. The Army private was killed in France on Sept. 17, 1918, at age 22. He was hit by a shell.


Hebner is buried at Saint Mihiel American Cemetery in France, one of 4,153 American soldiers in the cemetery. Hebner doesn’t show up in Company F records. His service isn’t noted on the Company F Monument outside the Armory, the Pearl Street building that is now the YMCA.


Morse and her husband Jim have paid for a gravestone for Hebner which should be installed soon in Boxwood Cemetery. The stone will be next to the Hebners and Cooks. (Don Cook's father Irving Cook married Etta Hebner.)

A record shows Hebner started at Company F in medina on Dec. 4, 1917 and was discharged on April 26, 1918.


“It’s about bringing honor to him,” Mrs. Morse said Friday at her home on Erie Street. “There’s nothing about him in the village.”

Morse thinks Hebner’s parents may not have had the money to bring the soldier home to be buried in Medina or to buy him a gravestone.

“It was important to me to leave behind a reminder of that sacrifice, one that has gone unnoticed all these years,” Morse said.

Morse, who works as a kitchen designer for Barden Homes, said other researchers helped her locate Hebner’s military records, and also find a picture of him.


“My wish is that from this day forward he will have the respect and remembrance he deserves each and every Memorial Day along with the countless others who gave so much for our country,” she said. “After all he has been waiting almost 100 years.”

This gravestone will soon be installed to recognize Jay David Hebner's service to his country.


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Many from Orleans County served and died in Civil War

Photo by Matthew Ballard

The Soldiers & Sailors Monument, dedicated 140 years ago in the spring of 1876, contains the names of 466 soldiers and sailors etched on marble tablets; those men who gave their lives for the preservation of the Union buried both at home and on the battlefield. The monument stands as a testament to the beauty of our native Medina Sandstone and the pride and community commitment to honoring our veterans.


By Matthew Ballard, Orleans County Historian Posted 28 May 2016

Volume 2, Issue 22
ALBION – The 7th grade class of students from Albion Middle School dedicated a beautiful granite urn, sugar maple tree, and bronze plaque affixed to a slab of pink Medina Sandstone on May 26.


The task undertaken by Tim Archer should be applauded and imitated by teachers throughout the region as a heartfelt effort to educate students about the importance of becoming noble citizens.

Over 140 students stood on the very ground once selected by David Hardie and other area municipal supervisors for use as a lot for veteran burials. Just two years later, the men of Curtis Post Grand Army of the Republic dedicated a flag pole and M1841 6-pounder bronze howitzer cannon to the memory of their fallen comrades. Those same men committed themselves to ensuring that all indigent soldiers who found themselves interred within potter’s field be removed to this newly consecrated lot.


In conjunction with the ceremonies held on May 26th and Memorial Day, it may be fitting to share a few brief notes of interest pertaining to Civil War veterans from Orleans County.

Thousands of men would enter into service with the Union Army, some would never return, yet many would return with permanent physical and mental scars from the horrors of battle.

Pvt. Ross Brown, 18th U.S. Colored Troops – born a slave in North Carolina, Brown escaped as a stowaway aboard a ship traveling for New Orleans. Making his way inland, he enlisted with the Union Army in 1864 and moved to Albion in 1890. He was affectionately known locally as “Uncle Ross.”


Maj. Thomas Bell, 8th N.Y. Cavalry – developing a fondness early on in life for theater, Bell allegedly spent two years with Edwin Booth’s company in Alabama before engaging in the foundry business at Albion. After the war, he introduced an article into U.S. law giving veterans preference in civil service appointments.

Dr. Arthur K. St. Clair, 5th Michigan Cavalry – graduating at the head of his class from the College of Physicians and Surgeons of New York City, Dr. St. Clair was regarded as an outstanding field surgeon having participated in at least 14 battles. When Gen. Wadsworth was killed at The Wilderness, St. Clair volunteered with a party of men to retrieve the body from the Confederate line.

Pvt. Herbert Taylor, 140th N.Y. Infantry – Clarendon native Herbert Taylor was with his regiment at Gettysburg on July 2, 1863 and repulsed the attack on Little Round Top. Making the ultimate sacrifice, he is believed to be the only Orleans County native to have died at Gettysburg.


Pvt. Isaac Hawkins, 54th Massachusetts Infantry – Medina resident Isaac Hawkins enlisted with the all African-American regiment once headed by Col. Robert Gould Shaw and made famous by the 1989 film “Glory.” Hawkins was captured at the Battle of Olustee in Florida, spending over a year at Andersonville Prison Camp and on one such occasion allegedly received 250 lashes as punishment for an unknown reason.

Col. Fazilo A. Harrington, 27th Illinois Infantry – a native of Medina, Harrington entered West Point Military Academy in 1850 before resigning his position in favor of a career in civil engineering. Answering the call of Gov. Yates of Illinois, he was placed in command of the 27th Illinois Infantry. Harrington was struck in the face by an artillery shell at the Battle of Stones River, killing him instantly. A Confederate private attempting to steal the colonel’s boots was given quite the scare when he looked up to see Harrington’s eyes wide open, as if to stare at him.

Maj. Angelo Paldi, 1st Michigan Cavalry – a native of Italy, Paldi was a respected painter and solider who allegedly served with the French Army in Algeria and Spain before immigrating to America. Serving under Gen. George Custer for a short period of time, it was Paldi’s suggestion to form a regiment of Hussars, or heavy cavalry, modeled after the regiments of Europe. After the war he moved to Albion, his body is interred at St. Joseph’s Cemetery in Albion.


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Waterport teen rescues man who drove into Lake Ontario

Photo by Tom Rivers
Hayden London is pictured today at Frank’s Auto in Albion, where he has a part-time job.

By Tom Rivers, Editor Posted 27 May 2016
BARKER – A Waterport teen went fishing with three friends at Golden State Park in Barker on Thursday and likely saved the life of a man who drove into the lake.

Hayden London, 17, and his friends – Alex Plummer, Josh Tombari and Matt Scroger – were fishing by the inlet at the state park. They heard an engine roar and then a big splash in the water.

They ran to the lake and saw a green van pointed down in the water. The front was submerged. Another man was standing near the shore and told the teens a man was inside the van.

London and Plummer each grabbed big rocks. London took off his shirt and dove in the water. He saw a man who appeared to be elderly inside, hitting at the window trying to get out.

London smashed the driver’s window with a rock. Water came rushing inside the van, London recounted today. London put his shirt on the window, to protect the man from the broken glass. London and Plummer then pulled the man out of the van.

“He did a damn fine job,” Lt. Patrick Rindsleisch of the Niagara County Sheriff’s Department said about London.

The rescued man seemed to be OK at the scene but was taken by ambulance for observation. Rindsleisch declined to release the man’s name, citing privacy concerns.

But he said London “helped the guy immensely” in a remote area of the Niagara County.

London is a junior a Lyndonville Central School. He said he is grateful the man was saved from the sinking vehicle.

“At first we were froze because we didn’t know what to do,” he said. "We could see he was trying to get out. I didn’t want to watch someone die.”


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Patriotic chalk art added outside Albion Middle School

Photos by Tom Rivers Posted 27 May 2016
ALBION – Jennifer Gray, a chalk artist and director of the Genesee-Orleans Regional Arts Council, works on a chalk art creation of the Statue of Liberty and an American flag today outside the Albion Middle School.


Christopher Mitchell Funeral Home sponsored the display which will be on the grounds for the Memorial Day ceremony following a 10 a.m. parade on Monday.

Jennifer Gray, left, and Go-Art! intern Alexis Krinki of Brockport work on the chalk art creation today. Krinki is also a GCC student. This is her first time doing chalk art.


Go Art! and the Albion Merchants Association are organizing a chalk art display and contest on June 11 as part of the Strawberry Festival. For more on that event, click here.

Alexis Krinki works on the stars in the flag for the chalk art display by the Middle School.


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State approves grant for teaching kitchen at fairgrounds

Staff Reports Posted 27 May 2016

KNOWLSEVILLE – The state has approved a $25,675 grant for Cornell Cooperative Extension of Orleans County to establish a teaching kitchen at the 4-H Fairgrounds. The funds will go towards a kitchen at the Trolley Building.


The funding was announced today by Gov. Andrew Cuomo, who said $1.1 million in state funds will be used for projects to strengthen the research, promotion and development of New York State's agricultural industry.


The funding, approved by the Genesee Valley Regional Market Authority, supports efforts range from upgrading equipment at the New York Wine & Culinary Center, to developing a marketing plan for the Lake Ontario Wine Trail, to boosting the craft beverage industry through research at the New York State Agricultural Experimental Station.


The Upstate revitalization Award-winning Finger Lakes Forward plan for investing state resources recognizes the centrality of agriculture in the region’s economy. The Finger Lakes produces approximately a quarter of New York State’s total agricultural output and the industry supports 19,000 jobs in the region.


"Agriculture remains a key economic engine for New York and we must do all we can to ensure its continued strength," Governor Cuomo said. "This funding will support the thousands of farms and agricultural businesses that call the Finger Lakes home, as well as the research that has been critical in the growth of New York's craft beverage industry."


The Genesee Valley Regional Market Authority, in cooperation with the New York State Department of Agriculture and Markets, solicits applications each year to assist in the development of agriculture and agriculture-related businesses in nine counties in the Finger Lakes and Southern Tier regions: Genesee, Livingston, Monroe, Ontario, Orleans, Steuben, Wayne, Wyoming and Yates. The Authority has awarded more than $6.5 million to 60 projects in the region through the Agriculture Development Grant Program since 2011.


The Genesee Valley Regional Market Authority Board of Directors has voted to fund the following projects in 2016:


• New York Wine and Culinary Center: $192,000 for the purchase of audio visual equipment, purchase of new kitchen equipment, food truck improvements, 2017 CSA Fair, guest chef events, and marketing and promotion material and collateral.

• New York Wine & Grape Foundation: $195,000 to support the NY Drinks NY program.


• Cornell Cooperative Extension of Orleans County: $25,675 to establish a teaching kitchen at the Orleans County fairgrounds.


• Lake Ontario Wine Trail: $27,750 to implement the Lake Ontario Wine Trail Marketing Plan.


• New York Apple Association: $82,701 to assess the economic contribution of the apple industry in New York State and to enhance the industry's economic development activities.

• New York State Agricultural Experimental Station: $100,000 for plant growth chamber renovation and purchase of a bench top refractometer.


• New York State Agricultural Experimental Station: $220,000 for research to support accelerated production of organic grains, corn and soybeans.


• New York State Agricultural Experimental Station: $200,000 for the third year of a multi-year plan to research malting barley production.


• New York State Agricultural Experimental Station: $56,874 to support the development and testing of apple varieties for the production of hard cider.

State Agriculture Commissioner Richard A. Ball said, "These counties are home to some of New York's most diverse agricultural producers and are vital to the success of the industry throughout the State. These key investments in research, facility upgrades, and marketing will benefit both the producers and the public, and this funding will help to ensure the success of agriculture in the state and drive the industry forward."


For more on the Genesee Valley Regional Market Authority, click here.


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Several Memorial Day parades planned in Orleans County

Photo by Tom Rivers Posted 27 May 2016
MEDINA – Flags have by placed by the graves for veterans at Boxwood Cemetery in Medina in time for Memorial Day.


Here is the list for Memorial Day parades in Orleans County for Monday:
Albion – Parade starts near the Orleans County Court House on Main Street at 10 a.m. and proceeds to the Albion Middle School front lawn where there will be a service near the Vietnam Memorial.
Holley – A ceremony will start at the American Legion Post at 9 a.m. and proceed to the VFW Post.  Veterans will also visit cemeteries.
Kendall – A parade will start 7 p.m. at the Morton Fireman’s Field and end at the Morton Union Cemetery where a ceremony will be held.
Lyndonville – The parade will start at 9 a.m. at the Catholic Church and end near the library.  A ceremony will be held there.
Medina – The parade will start at 11 a.m. at the Olde Pickle Factory building and proceed to the State Street Park where a ceremony will be held.


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2 from Albion among GCASA scholarship recipients

Provided photo

GCASA awarded scholarships this week to three students, from left: Caitlin Malanowski of Albion, Jessica Bukowski of Notre Dame High School in Batavia, and Madeline Gibbs of Albion.


Press Release, GCASA Posted 27 May 2016

Each year, GCASA Foundation awards two $1,000 scholarships: one to a Genesee County student and one to an Orleans County student. GCASA Foundation Scholarship was established to support the work of GCASA. The foundation board is committed to the scholarship program, created to help students who will study human services, counseling, or health services.


This year, the selection committee, comprised of two board members, Kathleen Maerten and James Morey, and one past board member, Jason Smith, decided to add an additional Director’s Choice scholarship award in the amount of $250 due to the exceptional applications received.


The committee selected Jessica Bukowski, a senior at Notre Dame High School as the award recipient for a Genesee County student. She is a member of the National Honor Society, Student Senate, and Mock Trial Team. She also is a competitive gymnast and member of the Varsity swim, diving, softball, and cross country teams. Jessica works as a gymnastics coach and is expected to graduate second in a class of 39 students. In Jessica’s essay, she wrote, “I will study and perform the best I can in my education and then take what I learn to help make at least one person’s life better.” Jessica plans to pursue a degree in Psychology at Canisius College.


Caitlin Malanowski is an Albion Central School senior and the recipient of the award for an Orleans County student. She is a member of the National Honor Society, Albion Marching Band, Women’s Select Choir, and Drama Club. She participates in track and cross country. She also volunteers as a tutor at the Albion Elementary School, helping younger students with reading, writing, math, and science. Caitlin is expected to graduate third in her class of 131 students. Scott Green, High School Counselor, commented in his recommendation letter that Caitlin is someone who leads by example. He said, “I don’t think I can truly express how deserving I believe Caitlin is of this scholarship.” She plans to study Nursing at Elmira College.


The Director’s Choice scholarship was awarded to Albion Central School senior Madeline Gibbs. She has been involved with cheerleading and track throughout high school. She is a member of the National Honor Society, Rotary Interact Club, and Yearbook Club. Madeline volunteers as a tutor in the Elementary School and as a religious education teacher for pre-K and kindergarten children at her church. She also volunteers for Vacation Bible School and Cheerleading Camp. She is expected to graduate 16th out of 131 students. Madeline plans to study Nutrition and Exercise Science at Ohio State University.


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Albion Rotary awards scholarships

Photo by Tom Rivers Posted 27 May 2016
ALBION – The Albion Rotary Club awarded three scholarships to graduating seniors for $2,750 total. Rotarians Bonnie Malakie, left, and Club President Karen Sawicz, right, are pictured with the scholarship winners Kyle Smith and Elizabeth Goff. Nathaniel Tremblay, not pictured, also was awarded a scholarship.

Elizabeth Goff received the A. B. “Dick” Eddy Rotary “Service Above Self” Scholarship. This scholarship for $1,250 is awarded in memory of Dick Eddy, a community leader, businessman, and Rotarian, who committed his life to the principle of service above self. The award goes to a senior who has demonstrated a personal commitment to community service and leadership, and displays high potential for future accomplishment.


Goff has been on the high honor roll, and has run sprints in track, while also being active in the school music program. She also serves as president of Rotary Interact, a Rotary program in the school. She wants to study physical therapy in college, with plans to go to Genesee Community College for two years before finishing at Daemen College in Buffalo.


Kyle Smith received the Edward B. Archbald Memorial Scholarship for $1,200. Archbald was a farmer, philanthropist, outdoorsman and a 70-year member of Rotary. This scholarship is presented to a graduating senior pursuing a college education who shares a love for sports, recreational activities, community service and work experience. The scholarship was raised from $500 to $1,250 this year by Rotary.


Smith has been a key player for Albion football and baseball. He will play football at Ithaca College where he will major in business and marketing. He has worked part-time at Mark’s Pizzeria and Panek Farms also also interned with the Orleans Economic Development Agency.


Tremblay received the Rotary Career Advancement Prize for $250. The award goes to a graduating senior entering a field that doesn’t require a traditional college education, such as a technical field, agriculture, law enforcement, or business. Key factors in selecting the recipient include community service, school activities, and work experience. Tremblay wants to become a police officer.


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Lyndonville makes big effort with flags out for Memorial Day

Provided photos Posted 26 May 2016

LYNDONVILLE – Volunteers from the Yates Community Library placed 50 flags on the school grounds near the Johnson Creek dam today. Another 50 flags will be placed on Main Street on Friday morning.


Other Lyndonville residents also purchased Main Street flags that were bought in honor of loved ones. Donors for those flags will get to take the flag home on Monday after the traditional Memorial Day service held at the village park.  

Library Trustee Patricia Mumau attaches a flag dedication tag for the flags on the school lawn.


Ginny Hughes did much of the organizing for the flag display.  She saw a similar display in Auburn. Kathleen Sillick created laminated dedication tags for each flag with names as specified by the donors. Jim Watson and his son Eric provided rebar and PVC pipe cut to fit for appropriate flag display. Patricia Mumau created an advertising flyer and designed the layout for flag placement. Gail Foss and Herbert Bohnet, also trustees, assisted in driving in the rebar posts and labeling the flags.  Mark Hughes and Joy Bohnet, spouses of trustees, also helped.

Library Trustees Ginny Hughes and Gail Foss attach a tag with flag dedication and name of donor. Mark Hughes is in back with the driver device.


The Lyndonville Village Department of Public Works surprised the trustees with a special gift that greatly aided installation: a custom-fabricated driver for pounding in the supporting rebar.


The flags will fly all weekend and will provide a background for the annual Memorial Day service in Veterans Park, downtown Lyndonville, at 9 a.m. on Monday.


After noon on Memorial Day, those who have purchased a flag may pick them up to take home. 


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Kendall community turns out in record numbers at annual memorial walk

Photos by Kristina Gabalski
The annual Grace Lang/Amber Liese Walk Thursday afternoon was well-attended.


By Kristina Gabalski, Correspondent Posted 26 May 2016

KENDALL – Despite threatening skies and a heavy downpour about 45 minutes into the event, students, faculty, staff, administrators and community members

came out in record numbers Thursday afternoon for the annual Grace Lang/Amber Liese Memorial Walk at the Kendall High School Track.

The event is sponsored by the Kendall Sr. National Honor Society and benefits the American Lung Association, American Cancer Society, Teens Living with Cancer, Kendall Ambulance and the Ovarian Cancer National Alliance.

Members of Libby Jurs' family pose together before hitting the track to walk.

This year's walk was dedicated to Libby Jurs, a beloved former Kendall school nurse, who died of cancer in 2015. The Jurs Family participated in the Walk and said Libby had participated herself in past years.  


"She is missed for sure buy a lot of people," Libby's husband, John said.  "She touched a lot of people."

"We appreciate all that has been done for our family by the Kendall Central School District," Libby's daughter, Jennifer  said.

A sign alongside the track featured a photograph of Libby.


National Honor Society co-advisor Gretchen Rosales estimated participation this year at more than 100 people, which is more than usual.

"Libby had a huge impact on all of us," Rosales said.  "Today is a celebration of her life.  We are excited to be able to honor her memory today."


Kendall Jr./Sr. High School Principal Carol D'Agostino said this year's school yearbook will be dedicated to Libby during the school's formal awards ceremony next Friday.

The Walk is named for Grace Lang, the Kendall school nurse who preceded Libby, who died of cancer of 1990, and Amber Liese, a Kendall student who died of cancer in 2010 just months after graduation.

Members of the Kendall Central School faculty, staff and administration pose on the track with the photo of Libby.


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Minor injuries in accident where truck flipped in Albion this morning

Provided photos Posted 26 May 2016

ALBION – This pickup truck flipped over when it was struck this morning by another driver who allegedly ran the Stop Sign at the intersection of Liberty and West State streets in Albion.


The driver of the truck and his passenger were fine, although one may have sustained a minor head injury, Police Chief Roland Nenni said.

Alberto Mendoza-Gonzalez, 42, of Marshall Road, Medina, was the driver of the other vehicle that went through the Stop Sign. He was issued vehicle and traffic violations for failure to stop, speed not reasonable, failure to yield, and driving without a New York State license. The Border Patrol was called due to Mendoza-Gonzalez's questionable immigration statue, Nenni said.


The police chief said this intersection has been the scene of many accidents over the years.


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Albion students unveil marker at Civil War section of Mount Albion

Photos by Tom Rivers Posted 26 May 2016

ALBION – Marines Pvt. Trey Liberatore and Sgt. Derek Yertich raise the American flag today during a ceremony at Mount Albion Cemetery, where a new memorial plaque was unveiled in honor of the Civil War soldiers from the county.

The two Marines stand at attention while the flag is raised.


The seventh-grade class and many community members and veterans attended today's dedication ceremony.

Abby Allen sings the National Anthem during today's program.


Today culminated several months of effort for the seventh grade "Service Learning" classes that are led by teacher Tim Archer.


Students in the fall catalogued the burial locations for more than 250 Civil War veterans buried at Mount Albion. That includes 72 on the east side, 137 on the west side, and 41 at the Civil War section. About 160 of those veterans had rusty, old cast iron Grand Army of the Republic (GAR) markers that needed repainting.

The GAR marker for Christopher Drake was repainted, along with about 160 others that were rusty.

These students – Bailey Blanchard in front, Josh DePoty and Alexa Grandy –  read the names of 47 Civil War veterans whose names weren't included on the marble slabs inside the tower at Mount Albion when the tower was built in 1876.


The tower was dedicated on the country's 100th anniversary and includes the names of 466 Orleans County residents who died in the Civil War. Seventh-graders researched the names of Orleans residents who died in the war, teaming with archivists and historians in the research.


These Orleans County residents died in the war but their names aren't in the monument: Miles Ameden, James Bayn, Jonas Bayne, Lyman Blanchard, Henry Burbank, Martin Burnett, James Caldwell, Jefferson Chapman, Oliver Clark, James Collins, William Crann, Dolly Denison, Edmund Everett, George Everett, Edmund Furndon, James Hammon, Henry Harden, Willis Herman, Edwin Holsenberg, Alexander Hosbury, Charles Hulbert, S. Hunnant, John Hurburger, Jenkins Irving, Lawrence Keegan, Ira Kelsey, Frederick Kruse, George Lytle, John McPherson, Thomas Morrison, William Mulligan, Ethan Murin, Alfred Parkinson, Monroe Peaslee, George Washington Pier, Abial Randall, Elisha Sanderson, John Simmons, Arrill Snyder, George Stanton, Charles Starks, George Sutton, Lewis Teyrrell, William Trow, Nathan Venton, George Woodhull, Gilbert Woodhull.

Orleans County Historian Matthew Ballard, who helped students with some of the research on the Civil War soldiers, speaks about the creation of the 50-square-foot lot at Mount Albion for veterans at the site of today's ceremony. The spot was picked for veterans back in 1883.


Ballard thanked seventh-graders for their "noble deed" in remembering and honoring veterans.

About 200 people attended today's ceremony including the Honor Guard from the American Legion.

Seventh-grader Emily Mergler, wearing period dress for the ceremony, said women also made many sacrifices during the Civil War, keeping houses, farms and businesses running while caring for children while their husbands were at war or killed in battle. Tim Archer, the Service Learning teacher, is in back.

Seventh-grader Infinity Bell talks about some of the Civil War soliders from the community.

Seventh-grader Quinn McCue highlights some of the class's efforts this year. She said the group isn't done. It will unveil a historical marker in September at Hillside Cemetery in Clarendon for Herbert Charles Taylor, the only Orleans County resident believed to have been killed in the Battle of Gettysburg.

Student Rocco Auricchio reads a poem, "Our Soldier Dead," by Joel B. Swett.

Seventh-grader Eli Pask notes the sesquicentennial of the surrender at the Appomattox Court House. The 150th anniversary was in April 2015.

The new bronze plaque for Orleans County Civil War soldiers was unveiled today. The plaque is on a 6-foot-long piece of Medina sandstone donated by Fred Pilon. The stone was saved when an Albion street was torn up about a decade ago.


Seventh-grader Jakob Talbot unveiled the new marker. Students also planted a sugar maple tree by the Civil War section and placed an urn by the cannon.

Members of the American Legion Honor Guard do a gun salute after the marker was unveiled.

These students – Ashley Ames, Logan Conlon, Sierra Kast, Kailey Merrill and Lauren Wehling – play Taps at the service today.

Tim Archer listens to his students during today's program. Archer thanked many of the local historians and Mount Albion staff for help with the Civil War research and recognition efforts this year.


He said he and the students enjoyed spending so much time in the historic cemetery.


"This cemetery is really a treasure that we have right here in our community," Archer said.


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Area soldier was happiest serving with friends in military

The late Sgt. Jonathan Webster, 27, served 2 tours in Afghanistan, fought cancer

Photos courtesy of Candy Farmer and Rachel Hafner

Sgt. Jonathan "Webbie" Webster is pictured on one of his two tours of duty to Afghanistan with the Army. Webster died at age 27 on May 10 following complications from chemotherapy to treat cancer.


By Tom Rivers, Editor Posted 26 May 2016
ALBION – Jonathan Webster was 17 when he joined the Army. It was a decision that brought needed structure for a young man who had lived with foster families. He moved around, making it difficult to settle in at a school district during his high school years.

One of his foster families in Le Roy urged him to get his GED and join the military. Webster followed that advice and he found a calling and sense of purpose with the military. He made numerous friends in the Army and the military became a family for him, even when he served two tours in Afghanistan, Webster’s mother Candy Farmer said.

“He joined the Army at age 17, thank God,” said Farmer of Holley. “When he was in the Army that’s when he was his happiest. The Army saved his life. It gave him structure and a sense of family.”

Jonathan Webster excelled in the military. He was promoted to sergeant.

Webster was enlisted for nearly seven years. He was first sent to Fort Lewis in Washington State, and later served a year at Fort Drum near Watertown. He was honorably discharged on Oct. 4, 2013.


He suffered from post traumatic stress disorder. His family said he was in a convoy when a roadside bomb blew up, killing one of his close friends. Webster received the Purple Heart and numerous medals for his service.


Webster reconnected with family when he was back in the area. He “struggled for a while” readjusting to civilian life, said his sister Rachel Hafner of Albion.

Jonathan Webster holds his niece, Isabelle, in this photo from 2014.

Webster found a groove, living in Gates and working as a machinist. He enjoyed working with his hands. He visited his sister in Albion and her four children. He loved to carve pumpkins with them, take them fishing and play catch in the backyard with a football.


Last August Webster was diagnosed with testicular cancer. The surgery seemed a success, but doctors discovered more cancer with a CT Scan about four months after the surgery. Webster had nine weeks of chemotherapy starting in December.

Webster suffered a rare side effect from the chemo: Bleomycin Toxicity damaged his lungs making it difficult to breathe. Webster was admitted to Strong Memorial Hospital on April 6. On April 28, he was taken to the University of Pittsburgh Medical Center to await a double-lung transplant. Webster was stricken with pneumonia and blood clots. He died on May 10.


His family remains in shock at how quickly Webster lost his health. He was muscular and committed to fitness.

Webster is pictured with his nephew Brody Hafner of Albion. Webster added many tattoos while he was in the military.


While he was fighting cancer and going through chemotherapy, he sent friends and family reassuring text messages.


“He said everything would be Ok, and don’t worry about me,” his sister said.


Webster was charming around women. But he was also private and didn’t want attention while he was sick.


Webster’s mother said her son overcame a difficult childhood to succeed in life and serve the country with honor.


“He triumphed over everything you put in front of him,” Farmer said.

Webster is pictured with his mother, Candy Farmer of Holley, in this photo from Mother's Day 2015.

Webster comes from a military family in the Holley area. His uncle, the late Gary Stymus, was one of the 11 Holley men who died in the Vietnam War. Many of Webster’s family members have served in the military, including his brother Jason Webster, who is recently retired from Marine Corps.


Hafner, Webster’s older sister by 10 years, said her brother is a success story.


“He was a hell of a fighter,” she said.


The family is planning a celebration of his life on June 18 from 1 to 6 p.m. at VFW in Holley. Many of Webster’s Army friends from Fort Lewis in Washington and Fort Drum are expected. Military honors, including a 21-gun salute, will be presented at 1 p.m.


A GoFundMe account has also been established to help the family cover funeral expenses. Click here for more information.


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