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Letters to the editor

Saturday, July 20, 2013 - Updated: 4:08 AM

3 on 3 = Community Mosaic

To the editor:

If you didn't make the second annual 3 on 3 "Stop the Violence" tournament held at Veterans Field this past Saturday you missed a lot. Not only were the onlookers treated to the athletic abilities, teamwork and friendly competition of 60-plus teams with over 250 participants but they saw a wonderful mosaic of people who came together to form a rainbow of hope that never ever will we have to endure such pain and anguish due to the violence which prompted this enjoyable event.

T.J. Czeski and Casey Martin along with the many devoted volunteers once again put on an event that brought our beautiful community together for at least one day to watch great basketball and to reflect on what we really are "one community made up of many cultures."

William D. Wills,


The best care anywhere

To the editor:

This is relative to the 16 years I spent as an employee of Mount Loretto. In that capacity I was never just a number on the time clock. I had an identity and all communications there were on a first-name basis. The department heads were not heads per say. An an example, I present to you, Wanda Tolpa. She was in charge of laundry and housekeeping. But you would have never known it because instead of reclining in an office chair you could find her on any given day on her hands and knees scrubbing the floors and all sorts of menial labor. She set a work operation by performing these tasks that made the rest of her staff good by example.

The nurses were above reproach. Marge DiCaprio, Pam Veeder, Helen Abrams, Cheryl Mycek, Shelia Stanton, Stacy Dado and Evelyn (drop dead gorgeous) Sheridan. My daughter-in-law went the extra mile. Should my children decide I am a very large pain in the neck, and they decide to place me in a nursing home, they have been told to find out where Pat DeRose and Janet Fink are employed. That's where I want to go.

While I was employed there I was invited to attend a wedding. Miss Mary Healy was to wed John Kubas. Beauty is in the eye of the beholder. In 86 years I have never seen anyone glowing with such physical attributes as Mary. She had ample reason to be happy because she married a straight arrow guy -- the kind you would want your daughter to be with. At the wedding, there was only one person in the room who came close to looking that good. That was Paula Baldwin. To this day, nobody deserves to look that good.

The halls of Mount Loretto were filled with long-term employees. While we are on the subject, at one time there were six to seven members of the Semyone family there. You might want to judge them under the heading of nepotism, however, once you observed the work ethic that Shirley had instilled in them, they were hired for production and that's just what they gave you.

CNAs got their ethic from watching Arlene Vidulich and Mary Ellen Mickus. They were just a pleasure to be with. Two that might have been overlooked were Spring Clizbe, LPN, and Cindy Vitus, CNA. They were not only good to look at, but they gave you 60 minutes to the hour. One tragic incident occurred while I was there. Sister Pat, whom I love dearly, was given a present in the form of a collie named Rusty. The residents, the staff and the visitors all took a liking to Rusty. One day he turned up dead. I always was regarded as a mental midget so I decided to go on the PA system and advise everyone of Rusty's demise. I told them not to mourn his passing because he was in doggie heaven. And then I described doggie heaven. It was a narrow strip, five miles long, where he could run and play. One side was five miles of large oak trees very close together. The other side was five miles of fire hydrants should he seek to relieve himself.

To show you what a small world it is we had a nun named Sister Annunciata who was the best potato peeler I ever saw. One day she told me she had been a nun for 60 years and she only had one job in civilian life. That was for a tobacco company in Albany. My eyes lit up and I asked her if that company was VanSlyke and Horton? She said "yes, I knew your father." My dad committed suicide in 1935. She was aware when they hired me but she never said a word for fear of embarrassing me.

Mount Loretto was crawling with excellent care and compassion and true love for the 16 years I was there. When you worked there it was like you were trying out for a baseball team. Sister Pat would tell you "there is no 'I' in the word team." We pulled together and God willing we made life a little more pleasant for those in our care.

James J. Sheridan,


Gambling help available

To the editor:

Throughout New York state, problem gambling affects people of all ages, genders, occupations and backgrounds. Nowadays, we are all connected to social media in one way or another making it almost impossible to live without Facebook or Twitter, Pintrest or even Instagram. Add to that the popular online app company Zynga, who is getting ready to launch a real money online gambling app for already media addicted Facebook users. This will be available online as well as on your mobile device making gambling easier than it was before. Zynga has downplayed the financial opportunity and says it is just in the beginning stages of its experiment.

Even though online gambling is far more regulated than casino gambling and you can play for real prizes and money, its still a way to separate you from your money, making the company more wealthy.

But help is available to keep problem gambling from affecting your personal relationships, your financial well-being and your vocational pursuits. Seek support for you and your loved ones.

Find help for gambling problems at the HOPEline, (877) 8-hopeny or (877) 846-7369.

Denise Benton,



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