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Friday, 11 April 2014 09:39

Kelvin’s Journey

- To Speak At Skidmore Next Monday Evening

 

“ ‘Cause there'll be hard times, 

Lord those hard times -

Who knows better than I?”

-- Ray Charles

 

SARATOGA SPRINGS – He was dealt a losing hand from the beginning. 

 

Then, for a long time, by his own admission, he made it a lot worse. 

 

Kelvin Davis doesn’t shrink from his past, which is not a pretty picture. Scarce, stolen moments of happiness, perhaps, spread too thin over five decades of hell.  

 

Born in Brooklyn, Bedford-Stuyvesant specifically, with documented abuse throughout his formative years. But on February 15, 1987 at age 24, it got worse for Kelvin. 

 

A whole lot worse. 

 

The facts are not in dispute, by Kelvin or anyone else. He was convicted of first-degree manslaughter. An official NY Appellate Court record read as follows:

 

In the early morning hours of February 15, 1987, two private security guards were summoned to an apartment at the Martinique Hotel by residents complaining of a loud argument between defendant and his wife. One of the guards argued and grappled with defendant, at one point holding him against the floor in an attempt to calm defendant down. After defendant was released, and as the guards were leaving, defendant grabbed a sawed-off shotgun which he kept in his apartment and, at close range, shot and killed the security guard, who in defendant’s mind had “disrespected” him.

 

Defendant does not challenge his guilt of either manslaughter or possession of a weapon.

 

-Source: 174 A.D.2d 369 (1991) -The People of the State of New York, Respondent, v. Kelvin Davis, Also Known as Kelvin Bowens, Appellant Appellate Division of the Supreme Court of the State of New York, First Department.

 

It is important to note that Kelvin was acquitted on the more serious charge of second-degree murder. 

 

But how much does your life have to sink where you can take solace in that kind of hair-splitting? 

 

And so Kelvin went down. Down hard.  

 

He entered the ‘land of no hope’ – no other way to put it. His first and only foray into the penal system led him to be incarcerated in Ossining (Sing Sing), Attica and a three-year solitary confinement stretch at Elmira. One admittedly horrific crime led to one squandered lifetime. 

 

When he emerged from prison, Kelvin was nearly 50 years old, and had spent more than half his life in such places. 

 

He has a trailer waiting for him in Greenfield Center that his son provided, but as part of his many parole conditions, (which can extend as far as 2030), Kelvin has to live at Shelters of Saratoga (SOS), hold down gainful employment and a host of other conditions. 

 

He credits his SOS caseworker, Ginny Stoliker, with helping him to find a job at Quad Graphics in just eight days, and Kathleen DiCarlo, an instructor at John Paolo’s Beauty Institute with taking an interest in him. Kelvin expects to receive his cosmetologist license before Labor Day. 

 

So far, so good as far as that goes. What is not required by parole, but comes from inside Kelvin Davis’ spirit is the desire to share his journey – but he’s no role model, and intends to say so. “I have 24 years of reasoning,” he said, “why you don’t make decisions like I did on February 15, 1987.” 

 

Kelvin will share and expand that message at a special lecture at Skidmore College’s Emerson Auditorium on Monday, April 14 at 6 p.m. The presentation is free and open to the public. 

 

He has many stories of relentless horror, of inhumanity and pain. He shared some vignettes that were raw, gritty and terrifying. It would be an injustice to try and replicate them in print. Better to hear them directly. He does promise that everyone will “…laugh a bit, weep a bit more, but learn a lot.”

 

In our visit, he called it ‘paying it forward,’ which is fairly popular jargon these days, but subject to a variety of meanings. I asked him for some amplification as to what that plainly meant to him. 

 

He stared out the window. Looking through slats that cast a horizontal shadow, left to right across his face in the dwindling sunlight. 

 

For decades, that shadow was vertical, from bars that extended up and down. Except with a lot less sunlight and much darker shadows. “For me, it’s the only way I know to give back.” Kelvin said.

 

He looked straight at me and said, “I want to share the things I’ve learned in the hope that somebody will not have to go through what I did.”

 

“If I can get even one person to listen, then for me it will be mission accomplished.”

 

Kelvin Davis

6 p.m. Monday, April 14

Emerson Auditorium

Skidmore College

Presented by Bene-Faction and Skidmo’ Daily

 

Refreshments provided by Esperanto

Friday, 04 April 2014 17:29

George Bookasta

SARATOGA SPRINGS — George Bookasta passed away last week in Saratoga Springs at 96. He was a child movie star in the Golden Era of Hollywood, a big band leader, World War II veteran, entertainer, director, producer, avid horseman, loving father, grandfather and friend to many.

George was born on July 14, 1917 in Kansas City, Missouri. At the age of 3, George—with a mustache, bowler and Charlie Chaplin outfit—was seen by a talent scout on the Vaudeville stage and signed by Mary Pickford, Douglas Fairbanks and Charlie Chaplin for United Artists. The family then moved to Hollywood. George was cast in a dozen child star roles opposite Pickford, Reginald Denny and numerous other leading stars of the day. Amongst his most memorable roles, George played opposite Lupe Velez, as "Spotty", in Henry King's "Hell’s Harbor", one of the earliest feature films with sound. He also played in the Thief of Baghdad, Little Annie Roonie, Coquette, Rosita and Night Bird.

George went to Hollywood High School and was an unbeaten track star, playing football and baseball as well. He started his own orchestra after high school in the 1930s and was soon headlining Hollywood's Cafe de Paris, live on national radio.

George joined the U.S. Army in 1943 and was sent to the European front. He was a Sergeant and Army radio operator who saw active service during World War II in Germany and France where he was injured in battle. George formed an orchestra in the army, was a leader of men on the battlefied and escaped death many times.

After the war, seeing an opening in the new TV industry, George developed the nation's first weekly TV magazine, TV TIME, which he published for several years.

George was a horse owner and active part of the thoroughbred industry and Saratoga community.

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George had friends everywhere he went and the respect of all who knew him. He could regularly be seen at the horse racing track and enjoying the restaurants and shops of Main Street in Saratoga Springs, bringing smiles to people‘s faces.

SARATOGA SPRINGS – The Saratoga Center for the Family is a major community asset, yet many county residents are not fully aware of the incredible array of services they provide. This is the first of a multi-part series about the Center and its activities.

 

Simply put, there is no better time to explore The Saratoga Center for the Family (SCFF) than the month of April.

 

“April is National Child Abuse Prevention Month.” noted Jennifer Wormley, who is the coordinator for SCFF’s Harriet M. West Child Advocacy Center (CAC). Ms. Wormley oversees both the CAC and SCFF’s counseling divisions, bringing a multi-disciplinary team into one cohesive unit.   

“This month, SCFF encourages all individuals and organizations to play a role in making Saratoga County a better place for children and families.” Ms. Wormley continued.

 

As such, they have developed and coordinated a series of activities throughout this month. The schedule appears at the end of this story. 

 

But the larger point is that SCCF makes Saratoga County a better place for children and families year-round. The actual statistics of people whose lives are stronger because of SCFF are nothing short of staggering.

 

Consider these numbers for 2013, provided by SCFF’s Community Outreach Administrator Leah Ferrone:

 

  • 522 intakes for individuals requesting mental health counseling services
  • 587 counseling clients served
  • 3,630 counseling appointments
  •         19 prevention or coping groups
  • 208 participants served in Prevention or Healing Programs
  • 126 children came through the Child Advocacy Center for investigations of abuse and neglect

 

“Also, SCFF went into seven Saratoga County classrooms last year and taught 136 children the Educating and Empowering curriculum.” Leah Ferrone noted. 

 

But the numbers tell only part of the story. In our next segment, we’ll take a look inside SCCF and their activities that for 37 years have been geared to one goal: building stronger families. 

 

April is National Child Abuse Prevention Month. The following activities and events have been created to promote Child Abuse prevention and awareness throughout Saratoga County communities:

 

Throughout the month of April 

- Prevent Child Abuse flags will line Broadway in downtown Saratoga Springs.

- Each day SCCF will post Family Strengthening and Abuse Prevention tips. See facebook.com/SaratogaCenter and twitter.com/SaratogaCenter.

 

Sunday April 6 – Uno’s Dough Rai$er­ The Saratoga Uno will donate up to 20 percent of your lunch or dinner check to Saratoga Center for the Family. Diners need to present a ‘dough ticket’, which can be downloaded at: http://bit.ly/1eZAZtN

 

Crime Victims Candle Light Vigil ­ The Crime Victims Vigil is an opportunity for crime victims, their families and friends to come together to share their stories and experiences with the community. The vigil starts at 4p.m. at the Presbyterian New England Congregational Church in Saratoga Springs. District Attorney James A. Murphy III’s Crime Victims Unit brings this to the community.

 

Monday, April 7 - Split: Divorce Through Kids’ Eyes ­ Told from the perspective of children ages 6-12, this 30 minute documentary explores the impact divorce has on a child's mind and heart as their families change. This film and discussion is for parents who are divorced along with their children. SCFF Clinical Director, Kelly Barry, will lead a discussion following the viewing. 6:30 to 8 p.m. at Saratoga Springs Public Library.

 

Thursday, April 10 - Parent University: Online Safety for Kids - The Internet has drastically changed the way that children interact with the world. The Internet also offers new risks. FBI Special Agent David Fallon and NCMEC Education Specialist, John Kelly will present topics about Internet safety. Brought to you by Parent University and Saratoga Center for the Family. 7-8:30 p.m. at Maple Avenue Middle School Auditorium. 

 

Saturday 4/12 - Bacon Hill Bonanza 5k/10k ­ The 2nd Annual Bacon Hill Bonanza Road Race, Walk and Fun Run will be donating a portion of proceeds to Saratoga Center for the Family. For more information, visit http://baconhillbonanza.com

 

- The Donny Elvis Show ­ Enjoy a night with ‘The King’ impersonator, Donny Elvis, at the Knights of Columbus Hall, in Saratoga Springs at 5 p.m. Tickets are $15 and proceeds benefit SCFF. Presented by Ct. McLaughlin #422, Catholic Daughters of the Americas.

 

 

Tuesday 4/22 - Alex and Ani: Charity By Design ­ Between 7-9 p.m., the Saratoga Alex and Ani store will donate 15 percent of all proceeds to Saratoga Center for the Family. 

Monday, 31 March 2014 16:47

Helping Hope Take Flight

Shelters of Saratoga's 4th Annual Gala

 

SARATOGA SPRINGS –Join Shelters of Saratoga at their2014 annual gala on Thursday, April 3, from  6-9 pm, as they celebrate the ways they are "Helping Hope Take Flight.” The Event will be held at Longfellows Restaurant, 500 Union Avenue, Saratoga Springs.

 

Enjoy gourmet hand-passed hors d’oeuvres and a selection of wine, beer and non-alcoholic beverages along with live music and a premium silent auctions.  All proceeds benefit Shelters of Saratoga. Tickets are $100 and reservations can be made by calling 518-581-1097 or emailing This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

 

Shelters of Saratoga, the only homeless men's and women's shelter in the Greater Saratoga Region, serves hundreds of homeless annually with the provision of shelter, food, clothing, and case management services,  which includes assistance with employment, transportation and housing. Recent service additions have included mobile outreach to youth, chronically homeless individuals, and families and individuals lodged in area motels.

 

 

Due to the growing demand for services, SOS relies heavily on the community’s generosity to volunteer, fundraise and provide financial assistance. Learn how you can get involved at: http://www.sheltersofsaratoga.org

SARATOGA SPRINGS – Close to 20 horses have been evacuated after a barn fire at the Saratoga Casino and Raceway.

Shortly after 6 a.m. on Friday, March 28 the Saratoga Springs Police Department received a call from the Saratoga Casino and Raceway in regards to an active fire at one of their barns.

The barn is number 15, which is located inside the fence near Gridley Avenue. The evacuation took place without any injuries to the horses. One person was evaluated for smoke inhalation, but not transported for medical aid.

The horses were evacuated by Saratoga Springs Public Safety personnel, the Casino and Raceway's security staff and other employees on site. The Saratoga Springs Fire Department brought the fire under control. The cause of the fire was deemed electrical and an accident, although the investigation will continue.

Update: Rita Cox, Senior Vice President at Saratoga Casino and Raceway issued the following statement at 12:45 p.m. today:

"Friday morning at 6:15, a fire was discovered by a backstretch security manager and local horsemen in barn #15 at Saratoga Casino and Raceway.  All horses were immediately evacuated and no injuries have been reported.  The Saratoga Springs Fire Department quickly contained the fire and is working to determine the cause.  The 26 stalls in the barn were fully occupied at the time and all horses have been safely relocated to other barns at the facility.  Damage to the barn was confined to 6-8 stalls and 2 tack rooms on the west end. 

"Saratoga Casino and Raceway’s backstretch includes 34 horse barns with 1,040 stalls.  There are currently 600 horses housed at the facility.  There have been no significant fires in over 20 years.  Inspections of the 50 structures located at the facility are conducted regularly by local fire officials, most recently in May 2013.

“The quick response of our team members and horsemen ensured the safety of all horses and personnel impacted by today’s events,” said Saratoga Casino and Raceway’s COO, Jamie Hartman.  “We are also very grateful for the immediate response of our local Saratoga Springs Fire Department, whose quick response ensured that the fire was quickly contained.”

 

"The live harness racing schedule will not be impacted.  Post time on Friday and Saturday is 6:45pm."

Friday, 28 March 2014 11:18

Heroin: No Community Has Immunity

SARATOGA SPRINGS— We tend to wax romantic about our community. And in truth, compared to other communities, we are relatively safe. As such, we sometimes fall into an illusion that we are insulated from the worst of society’s ills. 

 

But at street level, there’s no such illusion. This is the reality Sergeant Tim Sicko and the Saratoga Springs Police Investigation Division sees: 

 

“Just in the last four to five months, we’ve seen over a half-dozen overdoses from heroin.” He said. Moreover, “the number of heroin buys my (undercover) officers make have risen significantly over the past two and one-half years I’ve been in charge of the division.” The Investigation Division oversees both the drug and criminal units.

 

When asked to estimate the percentage, Sergeant Sicko commented. “Undercover buys of heroin were maybe 2 out of 100 just a couple of years ago, when we saw mostly crack cocaine and pills on the street. Today, I would estimate it’s closer to 50 percent.” He said.

 

The Prevention Council of Saratoga confirms that a significant uptick in heroin usage in this community has occurred, as part of a nationwide trend. Executive Director Janine Stuchin noted:

 

“No one starts off on heroin. National and local studies have shown that the recent upsurge in heroin use is directly connected with prescription pain killer (opiate) abuse.” 

 

The purpose of this article is not to sensationalize or unduly alarm, but to educate and advocate that if your head is in the sand about heroin in Saratoga County and you are thinking “it can’t happen here,” take a look around. 

 

“It” already is happening. 

 

And while no one will purport that Saratoga County has as bad a problem as some of the larger and more urban cities, to deny the insidious presence of this most insidious of drugs would be irresponsible. 

 

Both Ms. Stuchin and Sgt. Sicko cite the relative inexpensiveness of heroin as a factor in its recent rise in usage. “Heroin is less expensive than illicit prescription pain killers such as oxycodone, explaining the trend toward increased heroin use.” Ms. Stuchin noted. Sgt. Sicko also noted the “difficult, painful withdrawal process” that is involved from heroin once addicted that will naturally keep people looking for their next fix. 

 

Compounding this is the phenomenon of the “chase after the initial high,” as Sgt. Sicko put it, which would lead a user who might have started snorting heroin to graduate to a needle for a greater effect. 

 

Finally, you have the factor that, according to any study, the profile of the heroin user is younger than ever. “One of the recent overdoses we had was someone in their 20s,” Sgt. Sicko noted, “fortunately, he was not a fatality.” 

 

For the user, Sgt. Sicko noted that a factor compounding the danger of heroin are the other substances that are lacing it; substances which can be even more lethal than the heroin itself. “You don’t know what you are accepting or where it came from.” Sgt. Sicko noted. “In contrast, you can look at a given pill and if you are savvy, recognize the manufacturer – although this is not foolproof.” 

 

Heroin dealers attempt to mitigate this by engaging in a “branding” exercise: Labeling their nickel or dime bags with a logo or markings that would tend to inspire a false sense of confidence – I’ve bought this before, it’s OK – yet, Sergeant Sicko rightly points out that the street dealer has little knowledge of where today’s batch came from, if they were inclined to care in the first place. 

 

He spread an array of evidence bags before us and my eyes kept going to one dealer’s mark.

 

All I could think of was: How desperate would you have to be to shoot up from a bag that is marked “Game Over.”?

 

But is the game over? Hardly. 

 

“We have a number of full-time people who are on top of this daily,” Sgt. Sicko notes, “you’re seeing a significant increase in heroin arrests because our people, working with other law enforcement divisions such as the State Police, as well as a network of informants, are battling this daily and we have no intention of pulling back.”

 

“We are nowhere near the level of activity of other cities precisely because we are fortunate to have a group of young officers who are dedicated and on top of things… when a dealer comes to town to set up shop, we usually know who that person is already,” he continued. “But it’s a matter of constant vigilance.”

 

In that connection, Sgt. Sicko noted that while the profile of the heroin user the police are has gotten younger, this is not a major problem at either the High School (where he lauded the work of Officer Lloyd Davis who is stationed there), or on the Skidmore campus at this point. 

 

The Prevention Council confirms this, to some extent. “Our data from student surveys in Saratoga County show about eight percent of high school students are involved in prescription drug abuse and one percent reporting using heroin,” noted Janine Stuchin.

 

Any law enforcement officer would acknowledge that even with a consistent focus on interdicting heroin supply, long-term effectiveness of any effort is dependent upon programs that educate and impact on demand. Sgt. Sicko, while acknowledging that the restoration of D.A.R.E. (Drug Abuse Resistance Education) funding in the city is something on his “wish list,” cites that the education programs provided by the Prevention Council are invaluable.

 

“The role of the Prevention Council in addressing the scourge of heroin in our community is to be preventive rather than reactive.” Ms. Stuchin said. We do this though programs, like Too Good for Drugs, taught in many local school districts, which educate children on the inherent dangers.”

 

“We regularly collaborate with law enforcement with drug take-back days. For instance, the next National Prescription Take-Back Day will be Saturday, April 26 and we will be announcing local sites that will be participating.”

 

But both the police and Prevention Council note that the real education and greatest impact is an outgrowth of effective parenting. “Parents should not be afraid to talk to their kids and find out ‘what do you know about this stuff?’ Look at who they are hanging out with and take note of changes in behavior and appearance, for instance.” Sgt. Sicko says. 

 

 

While it would be nice to have an ending here, in fact this is a story about the process of progress, the ebb and flow of societal struggles and responses; perhaps a battle that will never be won, but nonetheless a battle worth undertaking daily. 

Friday, 28 March 2014 11:13

A Fashionable Move!

Fifth Annual Electric City Couture Fashion Show To Highlight Regional Designers 

SARATOGA SPRINGS — A major Capital Region original juried runway fashion extravaganza will be moving this April 26 to the Spa City.

 

Electric City Couture and Universal Preservation Hall will co-present the “5th Annual Electric City Couture Fashion Show — Saratoga Edition,” featuring both established and up-and-coming regional fashion designers in a juried, pure runway experience.

 

The evening will showcase signature collections of six regional designers and will include roughly 55 male and female models on the runway. Targeted proceeds from this year’s show will go to the ongoing restoration work of Historic Universal Preservation Hall, a year-round arts and community events venue located at 25 Washington Street in Saratoga Springs.

 

“Universal Preservation Hall is a beautiful venue to showcase Upstate New York’s burgeoning fashion scene,” said Dorothy ‘Teddy’ Foster, Director of Universal Preservation Hall.

 

The Electric City Couture mission is to provide a platform to increase awareness for regional fashion designers and fashion support industries to stimulate a regional fashion based economy.

 

“It is crucial that our communities show support for small business in all industries, including the arts and fashion,” said F. Michael Tucker, president and CEO of the Center for Economic Growth (CEG). “We support Electric City Couture’s goal of connecting local retailers with local designers to contribute to the creative economy of our region; which also supports these small business owners.”

 

Designers participating in the show include:

 

- Kim Vanyo of Khymanyo Studios (Saratoga Springs),

- ‘eko logic (Troy),

- Jane Wilson Marquis (Putnam Valley),

- Behida Millinery (Hudson)

- Kristina Collins Clothing (Saratoga Springs)

- Gamakache Black by Margaret Persaud (Brooklyn)

 

A new edition to this year’s show format will be the ability to “buy it off the runway” in a retail sales area that will be available both after the show on Saturday for show attendees and on Sunday, April 27, from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. for the general public. This year’s show will be a partnership between Proctors Theater of Schenectady, N.Y., Universal Preservation Hall and Electric City Couture. It is designed to highlight the strengths of the regional creative economy.

 

The Honorary Chair for the event is Julie Bonacio.

 

Live DJ music will be provided by Albany-based, Nate da Great. A special entertainment segment is yet to be announced.

 

Event tickets can be purchased in advance through the Proctors Theatre Box Office starting April 1 at 432 State Street, by calling (518) 346-6204 or online at electriccitycouture.com. Proctors Theater is a founding partner.

 

Special seating is available to media and fashion industry professionals including independent boutique owners with RSVP. Contact: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

 

This year’s show is also sponsored in part through contributions of Sonny and Julie Bonacio, Keeler Mercedes, Skinny Girl Vodka and Lifestyles of Saratoga.

 

 

For more information, contact Corey Aldrich at (518) 928-4622 or This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

Friday, 28 March 2014 10:14

Mom Prom II: Bigger and Better

- Ladies Night Out Benefits Saratoga County Children’s Committee

SARATOGA SPRINGS— One of the biggest hits of last spring’s social season is back for another go-round. It’s the Saratoga Mom Prom, ladies and despite a much larger venue this year, you are well advised to make reservations with extreme haste, lest you get shut out.

 

“We moved to the Saratoga Hilton so that we can accommodate a larger group of attendees,” noted one of the organizers, Ms. Suzi Ingmire, “but everyone had so much fun, I think they are all coming back plus bringing their friends.”

 

The key to all this Mom Prom-Mania is simple: a great time for the ladies (note well that while ‘mom-ness’ is not required to attend, having estrogen certainly is) with great food and drink, a chance to dust off that old prom or bridesmaid outfit and compete in categories from “prom queen” to “tackiest” with dance contests, interestingly-themed raffle baskets (such as the “baby it’s cold outside”: complete with handmade afghan, hat and scarf set and socks, Isotoner gloves, a tin of Bentley Teas, Starbucks hot chocolate, books, a bottle of wine, coffee mug, candle and body lotion). 

 

“We tried to keep the admission price affordable,” noted organizer Jan Perrotta, “so that as many ladies as possible can attend.” 

 

It goes without saying that a great event needs to benefit a great cause and with the proceeds benefitting the Saratoga County Children’s Committee, several worthy organizations, such as the Center for the Family, EOC and Domestic Violence Services, will benefit.

 

So here’s a great idea, guys: think early Mothers Day present. Your mom (or maybe your children’s mom) will be so proud. 

 

(Not to mention, you can go on that fishing trip with the guys and be guilt-free… but that’s just between us!) 

 

2nd Annual Saratoga Mom Prom

Saturday, April 26 at 7 p.m.

The Saratoga Hilton

534 Broadway, Saratoga Springs

$55 per person, ladies only

saratogamomprom.com

 

(518) 587-5392

SARATOGA SPRINGS – An idea whose time has come.

 

Beginning this weekend, a brand-new menu of brunch and breakfast items will debut at both Stadium Cafés in town (389 Broadway and 112 Congress Street, Saratoga Springs). 

 

Brunch will be served on both Saturday and Sunday, from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. In addition to breakfast items, the Stadium will offer drink specials including $5 Bloody Mary’s and Mimosa’s. 

 

 

It’s a perfect way to watch your (probably) busted Sweet 16 get whittled down to The Final Four. But I’m looking ahead to the fall. There’s something about showing up to the breakfast table just in time for the 4 p.m. NFL game that says Sunday Funday to me. Enjoy!

SARATOGA SPRINGS – This is a story about two local ladies who happened to be conversing on Facebook. 

 

Neither of them wanted this story to be about them, although their good intentions (and even better actions) are highly notable, particularly when contrasted against the typical narcissistic drivel and/or selfies for attention that seem to dominate my “news feed.” But they are real, and your neighbors. 

 

The first is Kathy Frank, an entrepreneur I have known for years. A caring wife and mother, she’s the type who is always there to support everyone. You know the kind, or at least I hope you do. The other is Laurie Coppola. She’s a nurse in a pediatric intensive care unit of a major regional medical center. Both make their homes in Saratoga Springs. 

 

Kathy had posted something that had inspired her based on a news segment she had seen. It was very simple, yet generated an outpouring of response: 

 

“So many children are confined to a cancer ward for months to receive chemo/radiation yet can't afford things as like an iPad...or simple technology that some of us have more than we know what to do with…Wouldn't it be nice to start a collection of used iPads sitting around our homes and donate them to Capital District Hospitals to give to those children that don't have access to these?” 

 

One of the many who responded was her friend Laurie, who in addition to supporting an ongoing need for these types of items, also noted that her facility had recently lost several items that the children used due to a variety of circumstances. She posted:

 

“Almost all of the most popular games …are a great tool at the time of need for the sickest of our kids. If you have any games for any kind of platform (PS, Wii or XBOX) and you don't mind parting with them…”

 

That was all that Kathy and her friends needed to hear. The “likes” exploded, the shares and comments went crazy, and most importantly, donations and pledges starting coming in from all over. 

 

“It was gratifying to see the response,” Laurie said. “I’m really proud to be part of this community.” 

 

As the gently used items started streaming towards Kathy’s home, she posted again saying why she was doing this. Mind you, this is a woman with a pretty full boat to begin with: “…children and parents spend a long and often unbearable time with little family support because the family lives hours away and can't afford to come visit very often… cancer doesn't discriminate/neither does tragedy. We would like you to help these kids in a small way make their stay bearable.”

 

Kathy and Laurie together identified a list of things that the pediatric unit could use to make their client patients and families stay more comfortable.  

 

  • Leap Pads/V-Tech Games for toddlers
  • iPads/iPods/Tablets  
  • Picture Books for toddlers/books for all ages
  • DVD’s for all age groups
  • Games for Xbox/Wii/PlayStation
  • Arts and Crafts
  • Board games (with all pieces included) 
  •         Card Games i.e.: UNO
  • Any used game system that you have upgraded 

 

As the last item on the list indicates, gently used items are what will be appreciated. While Kathy and Laurie’s friends have been dropping off items to their respective homes, this is a need that is ongoing. A little phone research revealed that several pediatric units throughout the country are sharing this need. 

 

So, we invite you to participate. If you wish, please bring any items that are in good working order and are no longer needed, those that are perhaps just gathering dust in your basement, to our office at 5 Case Street. We will make sure that these items get to Kathy and Laurie, and then to the patients and families that truly need it. 

 

 

Call it spring cleaning with a purpose. S

Page 30 of 39

Blotter

  • COURT  Billy R. Hendrie, 30, of Plattsburg, was sentenced Jan. 12 to 3 years of incarceration and 1-1/2 years of post-release supervision, after pleading to felony attempted criminal possession of a controlled substance, in Wilton.    Sonja N. Ambrosino, 41, of Amsterdam, was sentenced Jan. 12 to 2 months incarceration and 5 years of probation, after pleading to felony grand larceny, in Halfmoon.  Dylan K. Vella, 28, of Corinth, was sentenced Jan. 11 to 20 years-to-life, in connection with the murder of Paul Hollenbeck, according to a statement released by the Saratoga County District Attorney’s Office. Vella was charged with…

Property Transactions

  • BALLSTON BDC Cornerstone LLC sold property at 55 Anthony Pl to Eugene Viti for $345,486. Traditional Home Builders and Developers sold property at 21 Mallory Way to Matthew Hall for $418,500. James Giannone sold property at 2 Miller Ct to James Margiotta for $506,500. Charles Russell sold property at 117 Charlton Rd to Michael Wizner for $325,000. Barbera Homes Kelley Farms sold property at 11 Stablegate Dr to Andrew Collar for $566,204. CORINTH David Kirchoff sold property at 222 Oak St to Bryan Eaton for $220,000. GALWAY Andrew Hathaway sold property at 9040 Nassell Dr to Rick Percoco for $250,000.…
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