to the Editor
What's wrong with this picture in your last issue, July 16:
Environmental Conservation Police Officer grinning for the camera while
holding up an injured bear cub by the scruff of its neck like a hunter's
This is the same kind of pose that would be taken by the hunter who
has killed its mother.
How about a little sensitivity training for the Environmental Conservation
Police Officers in the handling of injured animals, especially innocent
young ones who may need our help and haven't yet learned what self-centered,
human-supremist jerks we are?
And the injured cub wouldn't come out from its safe place under the
deck after residents terrorized it for "several hours"? Hard
to believe, isn't it?
As a licensed “Wildlife Rescue & Rehabilitator” and
co-founder of “The Phoenicia Cat Project”, I read in horror
and disgust Jennifer Holtz’ July 16th column regarding her “serial
While it seems Ms. Holtz may find it amusing each time her cat drags
in a tortured, half dead creature, who may or may not be finished off
by one of her dogs, I like so many others do not find this amusing at
all. It is appalling and unconscionable that Ms. Holtz would put a frightened,
severely injured and helpless animal, screaming in terror and agony,
outside in the dark and be able to go to bed, listening to its’
screams, and fall asleep only to then awaken the next morning and casually
realize “the bunny was gone”. Her indifference to the cries
of an animal in pain and suffering and its’ ensuing miserable
death borders upon cruelty and exhibits a lack of moral character and
As an area resident, it amazes me Ms. Holtz is unaware of the several,
easily accessible wildlife rescue & rehabilitators in the Shandaken-Woodstock
area. All she needs do is pick up the phone and call the DEC, or go
online, to locate the nearest “rehabber”. We will even go
pick up the injured animal since it seems Ms. Holtz has neither the
inclination nor impetus to deliver it to one of us. The animals in our
care are treated both physically and medically by us until they are
restored to health and ready to be released back into the wild. If it
is obvious they will not recover, and especially are in severe discomfort,
the alternative is a death with dignity, free of fear and pain through
Several of Ms. Holtz’ columns in the past have featured the killing
of animals, i.e., chickens, goats, etc. For that reason, I believe her
column is inappropriate for your newspaper and especially for the eyes
of innocent and impressionable children. If her column gives me nightmares,
I shudder to think what effect it may have on the children who read
her gruesome tales along with the accompanying descriptions of slaughtered
and dying animals.
As for her “serial killer” cat, known serial killers when
caught are locked up so they can no longer harm or kill the innocent
victims they stalk. MS. HOLTZ, EITHER LOCK UP YOUR CAT OR BELL IT! And,
the next time your “kitty” or dogs drag in an injured animal,
show some pity and pick up the phone and call a local, licensed wildlife
rescue & rehabilitator and maybe we’ll be able to save it
from the agonizing death it will suffer if you do nothing.
Editor’s Note: Just as this publication seeks to include voices
from children to seniors among its columnists, and all stripes in its
opinions, we hope to continue reflecting all aspects of the complexity
of life in our times, and rural area. As a parent, we have learned that
from exposure to everything from the Brothers Grimm to the heartbreak
of losing pets, our young ones are the better for seeing life as a full
drama, and not just the controlled work we often wish it were. We firmly
believe that Ms. Holz’s writing is one of the highlights of what
we do. But we welcome such dialogue... it strengthens us all!
My husband gave me quite the scare last week. Thanks to the Shandaken
Ambulance Squad my day ended in relief. Thank you to Captain Ernie Longhi,
Paramedic Mark Bedell, Ernie Longhi Jr., and Tracy Stokes for their
expertise and kindness. And to the State Police Officer from
Rosendale, his name I failed to ask, and Police Chief Jimmy McGrath
for their assistance. Further thanks, throughout the day, to Captain
Rich Muellerliele, Officer Chad Storey, EMT Ben Holm, again to Tracy
Stokes and Patti Heinz for their concern and offers of help. We are
Also, to my mother for her moral support and ability to make Peter laugh.
To everyone who made this day bearable, thank you.
Mount Tremper, NY
I kindly request if you could print my speech as given at the Republican
Caucus held in Glenbrook Park on Rte. 42 in Shandaken on Thurs., July
To paraphrase Thomas Paine, I offer nothing more than simple facts,
plain arguments and common sense. All I ask is that we, as a town, divest
ourselves of our prejudices in order to determine for ourselves the
true character of the Town and generously enlarge our view of the Town
beyond the present day.
I’m not here to relate to the ills of the town or administrations
past or present. Most of us aware of defunct cell towers, infrastructure
issues and declining business throughout all of our hamlets.
Yet, we are still here, because we persevere. Our economy is NOT dead,
merely in I.C.U. We have a strong heart in weakened state, awaiting
the much needed shot of adrenalin. Believe me, there is no nurse on
the sidelines waiting with a magic shot. The adrenalin has to start
with us; the people of the Town who, day in-day out, wish for things
to get better.
Gone should be the days where one hamlet is better than another. Each
hamlet by itself is nothing more than a collective of commercial and
residential entities. What is to become of these if we focus our attentions
to one over another? I’ll have take notice of the former Heick’s
Market, here on the corner, as standing proof of a once thriving commercial
district. We are no more than the sum of our parts and, as a whole,
our T\town is a jewel.
We need to act from a position of strength, not from on our heels. We
are a strong-willed town; with the ability to pick ourselves up by our
“bootstraps,” out of the mire and help ourselves reinvigorate
this town to its former brilliant glory.
I ask you to have faith.
Faith; that we can do this.
Faith; in candidates that can lead us through rational, coordinated
efforts toward revitalization.
Faith; that by investing in our youth and recreational activities, we
can bolster our position as “The Heart of the Catskill Park.”
Faith; that our families and seniors will be taken care of and provided
assistance, when due... Lastly:
Faith; that we can accomplish this through true, honest legislation
that helps the Town emerge brighter and healthier.
I appreciate the support you’ve given me these past four years.
I ask you to vote your conscience and I ask for your support in my bid
to become the next Supervisor of the Town of Shandaken, “THE HEART
of the Catskills!”
Robert A. Stanley
Councilman, Town of Shandaken
Dear Editor, There are two long running and seemingly unsolvable issues
in Shandaken; one being the lack of cellular service and the other the
deteriorating state of Route 28. Our district members of Congress and
the State Assembly have been contacted, as well as department heads
at the Department of Transportation, with letters and by phone with
pleas for help. The economy and the fact that the cellular carriers
are private companies are citied as the problem. Perhaps it is time
for State officials and the cellular service providers to hear from
the people, the people who need these services. Use the links below
to join in signing the petitions to get your voice heard. Perhaps together
we can be the pressure to move these issues forward. Please pass it
on to all that travel Route 28 and Shandaken. http://www.ipetitions.com/petition/route28
http://www.ipetitions.com/petition/cellularservice Or find go to www.shandaken.us
and click the links to sign. Thank you, Peter DiSclafani, Supervisor
Town of Shandaken Dear Editor, My wife is an artist and recently had
two different occasions to relate to two different police forces in
the local area with interestingly different experiences. See what you
think. She was asked by a prominent artists association to show a number
of her works which she was quite happy to do. A few weeks after she
hung the works she received a call from the director and was informed
that one of her works had been stolen from the show during normal open
hours. The director was gracious, empathetic and trying to be helpful
and pointed out that they could bracket the time of the theft but had
no idea which of the various visitors might have taken the work. The
director duly called in the local police and a report was taken. I went
to the police station two days later with a print out of a picture of
the work and asked to speak to the officer in charge of the case with
the intent of finding out what further action was contemplated to try
to retrieve the work. I was told by the duty officer that the officer
who had taken the report was not available but would be contacted and
should have gotten in touch with my wife. He took the picture and annotated
it with the necessary identification info and indicated we could expect
a contact soon. No such contact was make so I went in three20days later
[ now 5 days from the date of the theft] and again was received by a
[different] duty officer who informed me that the officer in question
was at a training session all that week but should report in by 4 pm
that evening and a [second] message was left for him. It is now exactly
1 week after the theft and we have yet to hear from the officer and
have no idea what action is being taken or even contemplated to track
down the missing piece. When I asked why it was necessary that the reporting
officer follow up [meaning that any follow up would be delayed until
his training session was completed], I was never given much of an answer
except something that amounted to ‘that’s just the way we
do it.’ Two days after the theft a second, totally unrelated,
event happened to my wife as she drove home in the evening from a dinner
with a good friend. As she drove along a rural road about a mile from
our home just at dusk the car hit a length of clothes line strung across
the road, presumably by some prankster. Other than some rattled nerves
no damage was done to the vehicle or her person. Much of the clothes
line was caught under the hood of the car and, rather than find out
if the pranksters were nearby, she drove home with the line attached
to the car. I immediately called the local police and an officer duly
arrived to take a report. This officer, on the way to our home, had
alre ady observed the scen e of the incident, had found pieces of the
rope, had taken a survey of that area and simply wanted to confirm some
details from my wife. We discussed the matter in a business like and
very friendly manner and the officer left with the plan to knock on
a few doors near the scene of the incident to let it be known that this
was a dangerous practice [especially if the next vehicle had been a
motorcycle or a bicycle instead of my wife in a car] and that parents
should check with their children or at least keep an eye out for such
pranks in the future. Beyond that, the same officer, unrequested by
us, called the next day to report what he had accomplished and ask if
he could do anything more for us. Two different kinds of incidents in
two days to the same woman, dealt with in VERY distinctly different
ways by two different local police officers in two different jurisdictions.
Which would you hope to have to deal with if you needed police assistance?
I leave it to your imagination to decide the identity of the various
players in this tableau. Jac Conaway Olivebridge, NY
Last week’s letter from Jac Conaway alluded to a theft at a local
“artists association,” which of course was the Woodstock
Artists Association & Museum. On Sunday, July -- between noon and
2 pm, a small work was taken from the downstairs gallery and presumably
carried out of the building in a large purse or tote bag. Once the item
was found missing, gallery staff called the police who responded promptly
and courteously. A report was made. Gallery staff notified the artist
by phone that day. WAAM carries insurance for theft, loss, or damage
of fine art and the artist was promptly compensated.
We regret the loss of an original work of art and appreciate the artist’s
understanding in the matter. WAAM is taking careful measures to increase
security throughout our facility. Thank you to the Woodstock Police
Department for their ongoing support in the stewardship of our exhibitions
and grounds. Thank you also to the gallery staff involved for the professional
way in which they handled this unfortunate incident.
Executive Director, Woodstock Artists Association & Museum
I have been following the most recent "crisis du jour" involving
the Onteora School District and felt compelled to add my thoughts on
the matter. I am referring, of course, to the hideous, morality-decaying,
youth-destroying, perfidious bud vase (oops, shot glass) prom souvenir.
My feeling is, really, folks, get over it. Some people (and we all know
who they are if we have read the Freeman and/or Olive Press) seem to
have way, way too much time on their hands or, in the case of the District
Attorney (who I otherwise greatly respect for the good work he does
and did as a Public Defender) seem to just want to jump on the band-wagon
and get their names in the paper; but, he is an elected official, after
Putting all the hyperbole and rhetoric aside, the argument being made
about the shot glasses is simply ludicrous, at best, and continually
castigating Dr. Ford, the District Superintendent, for something which
she had no part in, just reeks of pure petty maliciousness.
Of all the comments that I have seen regarding this issue, the only
ones that make even a modicum of sense are those attributed to Misses
Tara O'Conner and Kelsie Johnan, two recent Onteora High School graduates
who spoke at the recent board meeting on 7/7, and whose comments were
reported in the Freeman on 7/9.
I have been involved with the Onteora community for many years and have
known many, many Onteora students, not least of whom is my son, who
graduated in 2008. I believe his class was given a short round glass
at the prom (oh, no, you could put alcohol in it!!!) and the preceding
class was given a mug (beer - A&W root beer how can we possibly
take a chance? - horrors!!!).
Now, I think that it is either the height of naivete or the pursuit
of a personal agenda/vendetta to even think for a second that handing
someone a souvenir that could be used to contain alcohol is going to
induce or encourage drinking by the recipient. To blithly assert that
the receipt of a shot glass (or any other type of object into which
liquids can be poured) will encourage the possessor of said glass to
drink and/or abuse alcohol is an absurd notion that has no more validity
than asserting that giving a boy an axe will encourage him to become
an axe murderer (shame on you, Boy Scouts of America) or that possessing
matches or a flint (again, shame on the Boy Scouts) will encourage someone
to be an arsonist. It is no doubt true that some of the recipients (or
their parents) of these items will use them, at some point (we cannot
make any assumptions about when, though) to hold some sort of beverage,
alcoholic, or not, but it is equally true that these same individuals,
if so inclined, would put that beverage into any available container
(glass, coffee mug, paper cup, etc.) that is suitable for the purpose.
It is also equally likely that the glass will end up sitting on a shelf
next to other personally salient keepsakes, trophies, and mementos,
as my sons does.
I think the issue really comes down to us as parents and what sorts
of messages and values we impart to our children. If we are so insecure
and unsure of our children as to think that the mere possession of something
that can be used to hold alcohol will, "send the message"
that it is therefore OK to abuse alcohol and encourage them to do so,
then I think we need to do some serious soul-searching and reflection
about ourselves and our ability to impart socially responsible values
to our children. If, however, we trust our children to make good decisions
and to have some sense of responsibility and self-discipline, as I do
with my children, and as I think most of us do, then this is clearly
a specious argument.
So, I say, look at yourself and do not blame the school (and/or anyone
associated with it) for your own fears and shortcomings as a parent.
Have a little confidence in your children, give them the benefit of
the doubt and the respect that they deserve, stop the Chicken Little
imitations and move on.
Finally, please do not attempt to misconstrue this letter as an endorsement
of alcohol use by anone (adult or teenager) - it is certainly not and
to suggest so would be a gross misunderstanding of the content of the
letter. But it is a call to exercise a lot more common sense and a whole
lot less of "political correctness" run amok. Our children
deserve no less from us.
What’s happening to the Onteora School Board? If ever a School
Board had a train wreck it’s the Onteora School Board. They not
only had a train wreck they’ve run completely off the track. Since
April 2008 four board members have quit the board. That’s not
good for tax payers because that kind of distraction doesn’t help
to solve the enormous problems this district faces. As reported board
member Resnick said, I would stress that the board needs to find better
ways in working with themselves. That would certainly be a very good
thing. Some members said they quit because of personal reasons. That
could mean anything. Some would say that the board doesn’t get
along with one another. Others might say that those that quit couldn’t
or didn’t want to make the tough decisions. Minutes of the board’s
meetings have shown that they are not being very effective in fixing
the cost per student predicament that we have in the district.
Tax payers should be concerned especially those that voted for the members
that quit. If the members that quit ran for office on the platform to
keep the Phoenicia school open what are the tax payers that voted for
them thinking? Regardless of what platform they ran on their supporters
must be somewhat up-set. Will anyone else quit?
Instead of wasting essential time trying to find someone to blame the
shot glass flap on they should be devoting all their available time
on finding ways to bring down the cost per student in the district.
Tara O’Connor had a very simple suggesting that would end the
shot glass fiasco. As reported she suggested a new policy to address
allowable souvenirs or a tweaking of an already existing policy. Seems
that at least one board member should have thought of doing that instead
of trying to find someone to blame that would not change anything.
This is a story about a professional shirking his own responsibilities,
and passing the buck to an innocent employee.
Carol Silverman has been an employee of the Onteora Central School District
from February 1, 1990 to the present. She was transferred to the Bennett
Elementary School on September 1, 1991 until she was unexpectedly ousted
from her position on June 30, 2009. She was unjustly charged with not
performing her duties, being insubordinate and violating her contract.
Although Mrs. Silverman is not an administrator, she has effectively
handled the day to day workings of the Bennett School for about 20 years.
She has been an integral part of the community through her work with
the Bennett families during the years.
Through word of mounth, some of the community has come to realize that
Mr. Buono relied heavily on Mrs. Silverman's experience and expertise.
This was demonstrated by his calling her at home and other locations
to verify procedures when he first became principal, a mere two years
ago. As time passed, be began to blame his lack of knowledge on Mrs.
Silverman rather than taking responsibility for his position. He became
hostile and resentful. We are aware of the harassment, defamation of
character, and slander that was perpetrated on Mrs. Silverman over a
long, agonizing period of time. She was falsely accused, unjustly reprimanded,
disciplined and embarrassed; all documented and placed in her personnel
Suddenly, on June 22, 2009, Mrs. Silverman was informed by Mr. Buono
that as of July 1, she was no longer at Bennett.
We are appalled and heartbroken, and cannot imagine how Bennett will
ever be the same without Mrs. Silverman. She is truly a Bennett icon.
The Bennett community would like Mr. Buono to explain his actions. Parents
of the Onteora community are very concerned since this is not the first
time we are hearing about and experiencing negative and inappropriate
conduct regarding Mr. Buono. This feeling holds true for elementary
as well as high school parents.
We just want the entire community to be aware of this unjust situation.
Dear Editor, With the recent passage of the historic Edward M. Kennedy
Serve America Act, President Obama has called on each of us to contribute
to our nation’s economic and moral recovery by volunteering to
serve our communities, and thus our country. But where should you volunteer
to make a real, lasting difference in the lives of others? One excellent
option is to become a trained CASA volunteer who works on behalf of
children who have experienced abuse and/or neglect and who need placement
in a safe and permanent home. CASA (Court Appointed Special Advocates)
volunteers serve in 33 counties across New York State. After an extensive
screening and training process CASA volunteers are appointed by Family
Court judges to help determine the best interests of children who may
have been victimized in their own homes. The volunteer’s role
is to review the Family Court file, interview the children, parents,
family members, social workers, attorneys and other persons involved
in the children’s lives, present a factual report to the court,
and monitor the progress of court orders until the children reach permanency.
CASA volunteers are adults, over the age of twenty-one, whose sole interests
are to promote the well being of displaced children as they pass through
Family Court and child welfare system. Sadly, as economic stressors
mount and pressures on families increase, so does the need for CASA
volunteers—who provide essential services at no cost to taxpayers.
Now, more than ever, children across New York State are waiting for
your help. The gift of your time and compassion can change the life
of a hurt and scared child. Please visit www.casanys.org to find out
how you can volunteer. Speak up for a child, and help to change the
world! CASANYS promotes and supports community advocacy programs that
train and supervise volunteers who assist Family Courts in making crucial
decisions affecting abused and neglected children. We are currently
seeking volunteers to be part of a “Friends of CASA” subcommittee
of the Board. If interested, please contact CASANYS at 518-426-5354
or email@example.com. Kathleen Crowley, Ph.D. Board President, CASANYS
It's simple. Health care in the U.S. is a profitable business, just
as banks backing toxic mortgages are. They are in the business of increasing
their holdings and that is their main ambition. They are
part of the "in crowd"; the bankers, oil companies, pharmaceutical
companies, government agencies, etc. Nice guys, but without conscience.
That is to be left at the door before entering. Just
look at AIG, and see if you can understand the connection between an
insurance company and toxic mortgages.
There are private insurance companies, Medicare and Medicaid. I won't
go into how these are all set up today, since that will take much more
research on my part. However, I would like to share with you some basic
facts, just in case you are nearing Medicare age. Choosing an HMO over
Medicare can be a bad mistake. In my opinion, even before Medicare age,
an HMO is a mistake. Why would you allow a profitable insurance company
to severely limit your choice of doctor, hospital, length of stay, etc.?
If you chose Medicare as your primary, you can see any doctor that accepts
Medicare, and most of the best surgeons, neurologists, etc. have chosen
to contribute their time to Medicare, whereas HMO's are generally very
limited in their choices. Since the rules and regulations in our country
have been largely removed, you can't trust anything that is said in
advertisements. You simply must do your own research. My urgent advise
today is to stick with Medicare as your primary, and then do research
on the best "secondary" company you can find for the extra
Now, regarding our President's plan, I agree with him that there is
some extravagance in the Medicare usage. When you can go to just about
as many doctors as you wish, and take more tests than necessary, I feel
that some of these expenses can be cut. I also believe that profit making
companies should not be in charge of our health care. Watch out for
the ads that claim that government operated insurance companies will
take your choices away, since it is actually the opposite. When you
remember that "truth in
advertising" is virtually gone, you then know that they can actually
hide the truth, which is that it is the private insurance companies
that take away your options.
I believe that once we expose the bonuses of insurance executives, as
we have the banking bonuses, we can begin to know more about how the
system works. Will we do anything about it? Well, I'm not in an optimistic
mood today, so I'm just saying.
As we are seeing right now in Washington, D.C., the political appointment
of a judge to any bench, whether it be County Court or Supreme Court,
requires close scrutiny and considerable dialogue to ensure that any
person nominated for a judgeship possesses the experience, knowledge
and impartiality necessary to ensure that justice is served. Unfortunately,
Governor Paterson has completely ignored all of these principles and
made a mockery out of the Ulster County Court by appointing Deborah
Schneer to the Ulster County Court Bench, with virtually no scrutiny
at all. It was in fact nothing more than raw Albany politics, at its
Let me be clear with the facts, based upon my own investigation of our
politically appointed judge. Deborah Schneer has spent much of her career
suing the taxpayers of New York State on behalf of convicted felons.
One of infamous cases involved the filing of a civil suit against the
State on behalf of notorious cop killer Bashir Hameed, a man who gunned
down two New York City police officers. Mr. Hameed objected to the authorities
placing him in restraints during a court proceeding, in spite of his
violent criminal history, and hatred of law enforcement officials. Ms.
Schneer incredibly argued that this was a violation of Mr. Hameed’s
rights, and sued the taxpayers of New York on his behalf. The court
demonstrated the good common sense that evidently evaded Ms. Schneer
and threw the case out.
Locally, the Democratic Party search committee, comprised of mainstream
Ulster County citizens, indicated that they preferred another, more
qualified, less radical candidate from their own party for this appointment.
The chaos and confusion that led to the Schneer selection even prompted
one local newspaper to refer to Paterson’s choice of Schneer as
the ‘accidental pick of an accidental governor.’
Our County Court Judge has the responsibility of protecting not just
the rights of defendants and convicted criminals, but also the rights
of those who have been victimized by these criminals. Ms. Schneer has
spent so much of her career representing these criminals, in lawsuits
against the state, that I am extremely concerned with her ability to
conduct County Court in an unbiased manner.
The selection of Deborah Schneer was another in a string of poorly thought
out, poorly investigated, and poorly executed decisions by Governor
Paterson. Fortunately, Ulster County voters will have their chance to
be heard on November 3rd.
Robin Yess, Executive Director
Ulster County Republican Committee
A partial tally of the 34 participating artists in the Shandaken Art
Studio Tour came up with these facts: $11862 in total art sales, an
average of about 50 visitors to each studio, and a big spike in activity
in local businesses. The Arts Upstairs had one of their best sales days
in a very long time. 60 Main, a new store in Phoenicia, had their best
day ever. People were observed all over town carrying the color brochure
and map. I had visitors from around the country, and from my own neighborhood.
People were delighted with the free,
eye opening experience. Here's a few comments from folks on the tour:
"Fun, fun, fun exciting /exhausting!" " It was terrific
- interested and interesting people." "Extremely validating,
engaging. Made an
important contact." "Lots of fun, lots of great response from
the people, 4 were from Boston." "Wonderful tour. We had lots
of business. We felt the impact..." "Thanks so much for organizing
the shandaken artists tour; the weekend was wonderful."
One of my favorite artists on the tour is Jim Gardner. His soulful photography
is great, but his mastery of the sculptured human form is amazing. Jim's
roots go back to the Lower East Side in the 1960's and the roots of
his landscaping green thumb grow deeper into Shandaken
and Woodstock gardens every year.
Judith Singer deserves the credit for making this arts festival happen.
I helped out every way I could. The two of us, with assistance from
Anique Taylor, managed to six handedly pull off a fabulous event. People
are getting an entirely new, fresh and positive impression of our beautiful
town. It is a big stimulus for our main cottage industry, the creative
arts. Thanks to the many businesses who sponsored the event. We promise,
all of you who wanted to take out an ad in our brochure but didn't get
in this time, you will be in next time. Remember, you can visit artist
studios any day of the week, not just on festival weekends. Go to our
www.ShandakenArt.com to preview our artists' work and find out how to
contact them. And look forward to our Holiday Mini-Tour in early December.
Our town has recently celebrated its second annual Art Studio Tour.
People walking down the street looking at their maps figuring-out how
to get to the next artist's studio, while others shopped, tubed, ate,
indeed, our town was alive. It was that way all weekend and into Monday.
Bravo to Judith, Dave and Anique!
The Phoenician helped give us the alphabet, artists give us a vision.
Long live art in Shandaken
Even our newspaper. lol
I was glad to hear that Mrs. Umhey was pleased by the care she received
from the Shandaken ambulance attendants, but I am compelled to write
this letter to address the misinformation contained in Marions Memo’s
of July 16th. She stated that the ambulance service proved too much
for Gene Gormley Jr. after his father died. His father died in 1965.
The Town ambulance was started in 1968. Gene is not Jr he is Gene 3rd.
I have been married to Gene for forty five years and have never known
anything to be too much for him. He has been a leader in the Community
and has been active in many civic projects. Anyone who knows him will
agree to that. Not wanting people who were not here at that time to
accept her remarks as accurate, I am compelled to write the first letter
I have ever written to a newspaper.
To give a little history about how rural ambulance services operated
for many years prior to 1968, it was common for local funeral homes
to run an ambulance service as a service to their Communities. The Gormley
Funeral Home did so for more than thirty years. Gene worked on the ambulance
from the time he was a teenager. No ambulance attendants had the specific
medical training required. In 1968 ,( three years after Gene 3rd had
been running the service), new laws were enacted requiring specific
EMT training for ambulance attendants. At that time, Gene notified the
Town Board, including Mrs. Umhey, of the new laws and that he could
no longer comply and afford to run the ambulance that the new law required
for a 24 hour 7 day a week ambulance service. He recommended that they
either start a paid ambulance service or contract with an established
service. For a few months they did nothing. Gene, not wanting to see
the Town have no service, operated without any charges for three months,
since that was the only way he could legally do it by then. He offered
to donate his fully equipped ambulance to the Town so that they could
form their own service. That was the beginning of the Shandaken Ambulance
Service and Gene did indeed donate the ambulance to the Town and worked
as a driver when needed and provided coverage for Karl on several occasions.
I do not know of any other Funeral Home run ambulance services that
remained in business after that time.
Karl Bush, who had worked on the Ambulance with Gene went and took the
training and ran the Town’s Service for several years and did
a wonderful job.
Emergency Medical Care has progressed so much since that time and we
are privileged to such a fine service available to us.
The Shandaken Democratic Committee will hold its caucus on Tuesday,
August 11th at 6:30 at Glenbrook Park on Route 42. We encourage all
registered Democrats to come and be a part of the upcoming election
from its very beginning…
We would like to thank all the wonderful people who came out Saturday
night (July 18th) to enjoy a “Movie in the Park” at Phoenicia’s
Parish Field. The movie was fun, but more than that a sense of community
sharing and pure joy was felt by all. These are the things that bring
us together and make us glad to be residents of our town.
This event was part of an ongoing effort by our group of volunteers
who have come together to raise funds for new playground equipment for
Phoenicia’s Parish Field. We hope you can join us for our next
event “Opera in the Park” on August 22nd at Parish Field.
This evening will feature internationally acclaimed opera singers and
Phoenicia residents mezzo soprano Maria Todaro, baritone Louis Otey
and bass-baritone Kerry Henderson. A chorus of local residents will
make its debut, as well.
Tickets are on sale at Pine Hill Community Center, Tenderland Home and
Lori’s Creative Café in Woodstock. For info contact firstname.lastname@example.org
Hope to see you there !!!
Parish Field Fundraisers