Today is: Friday, December 13, 2019
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Established 1891
Callicoon, NY | 845-887-5200
Monticello, NY | 845-794-7942
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Friday, December 13, 2019


Not going anywhere

To the editor:
Thank you for providing me with the privilege to once again serve you as your Sullivan County Legislator for the next four years. I am humbled by your support.
As your Legislature Chairman for the past four years, I have tried to be as active and as accessible to the people as possible, and I will continue to be available to all of you while striving to be responsive, not just to those of you in my district, but to all of you in the nine districts.
As a full-time Legislator, I have devoted my attention to representing the people of my district and of Sullivan County. I have worked closely and collaboratively with the other eight legislators and the County Manager in the best interest of our residents, and I pledge to continue that work ethic, and to continue to work to move Sullivan County forward.
We have come far in the past four years, but there is still much to be done to make Sullivan County an even better place to live, work, and play. I look forward to being part of that effort.
Thank you again for your support, and remember, I remain accessible, 24 hours a day, seven days a week simply by calling 845-807-0177.

Luis Alvarez
Chairman, Sullivan County Legislature

Hometown Memories

To the editor:
“You can never go home again” - Thomas Wolfe
“Yes you can.” - Leo Rosenberger

Dear Hometown Friends and Residents,
“If you try to return to a place that you remember from the past, it won't be the same as you remember it.” This expression gained notoriety as the tite of Thomas Wolfe's novel, entitled, “You Can't Go Home Again”. We've all heard the old timers' lament that, “The old town just ain't the same anymore.” When some would visit my parent's store, they'd say, “Hey Leo (Sr.), remember the good ole' days.” My dad would gruffly respond, “Yeah-what was good about ‘em?” That's called perspective. I never had it as tough as my dad so my perspective about my youth in Hortonville is different.
I left home in Hortonville after college graduation in 1972. Each and every year since then, I've gained a deeper appreciation for the people, the flora and fauna, and the local religious and educational institutions (St. Joe's Seminary, Holy Cross Grade School and DVC High School). My family, teachers, coaches, classmates, neighbors and Leo's Market patrons instilled in me the ethics, education and perspective that enabled a rewarding life for me and my family.
I will never forget what my hometown residents did for me. All of you have a heritage to be proud of. I remember Drs. Rumble and Mills, the Hortonville Fire Department and the local boy scouts who saved my brother's life back in the 1950's. To this day, I gain more appreciation for my Holy Cross Catholic Nun grade school teachers. It took me a few years after H.S. graduation to realize the excellence of teachers like Alma Doyle (foreign language), Robert Smith (sciences) and Helen Intemann (English). The pervasive literary influence of Mrs. Intemann became a very valuable asset in many of my lifetime endeavors. Then there were my athletic coaches, Jim Brown, Stan Kobylenski and Ron Bauer who inspired me to work hard at baseball and football. When I met Earl Kinney in the local cafe, I'm reminded of how I feared trying to tackle him coming through the line at football practice. I'll never forget my early employers who enabled me to pay for college without any student loans. There was Bruce Meyer of Gasko & Meyer Beer Distributors in Lake Huntington, Loretta Kratz of Monticello Raceway and Erie Lackawanna Foreman Walt Kellam, who was a serious Vietnam War Veteran, whose 101st Airborne Screaming Eagle eyes, could scare you straight with one brief stare. I miss my two best buddies, Bruce Reichmann and Syd Peters, a 24/7 dairy farmer and canoe racing partner of unmatched stamina. Both men left us too early. I am thankful to all of the local businessmen and tradesmen who helped my dad and mom succeed in their lifetimes - John Eschenburg, Dutch Lamb and Carl Vestrich to name a few. And how about all of those Leo's Market patrons who supported my family's livelihood. Oh the conversations, lessons and humor experienced in that little store and gas station, over the years, were as valuable as any college education.
I listened to local storytellers such as Harry Fisher, John Ihrig, Joe Guinan (Uncle Joe) and summer resident, James Braddock, a.k.a. “The Cinderella Man”, who knocked out Max Baer to win the World Heavyweight Boxing Title in 1935. My dad had befriended the “Bulldog of Bergen County” (Braddock) during The Great Depression, when they worked together ono The Jersey City piers. To this day, I am reminded of all the good things about growing up in Hortonville and Callicoon when my brother and I do our springtime trout fishing and attend the Hortonville Field Day. I fish past the Town Highway Department barn that was built when my dad was the Highway Superintendent, who preceded John Eschenberg Sr. As you see, I could go on and on with impressionable reflections.
I hope this emotional literary exercise convinces readers about my sincere appreciation for my hometown heritage. I continue to enjoy every minute spent with the wonderful people and beautiful places of my hometown.
Merry Christmas and Happy New Year to All!

Leo Rosenberger
Lancaster, PA

Did Ya Ever

To the editor:
Did ya ever meet two friends so rare
Full of love, respect and care
There in case you need a hand
With pals like this life is grand
If you wanna gab just give a call
You'll hear footsteps in the hall
Smiles non-stop can this be true
Never knew them years ago
Just from out the blue
Did ya ever sorta lose your way
Felt so all alone
Those two girls pushed back my curls
Called them on the phone
As I looked around me and walked a little more
Heard someone say Come in
Open the door
I felt so safe and lucky too
I quietly said a prayer
Thank you gals
My Bosom Pals
What a loving pair.

Catherine LoBosco

No Hurry No Worry

To the editor:
He's known a boy since he was born
So very sad and so forlorn
As he grew refused to smile
His parents tried for a long while
Took him to the doctor
Didn't find a thing
Told him he'll grow out of that
One day he'll smile and sing
A good friend of the family and lot we sorta worry
Though the med said with a clear head
Do not be in a hurry
With that we all felt comfy
That check-up was sublime
The mom and dad so darn at ease
And me though he's not mine

Catherine LoBosco

Weather Woes

To the editor:
I guess we know
As months just go
Ready for some change
Cloudy skies and temps do rise
Lives just re-arrange
Put the weather on it is getting dark
Why they just don't know
Not even mentioned
Maybe soon
We'll get a lot of snow
Sure enough things got tough
It was coming down
Oh cahoots don't have boots
Not dressed for this wet town
How many inches did they say
Six or maybe ten
Let's get going
It won't stop snowing
Not coming there again
“Weather woes”
That's how it goes
Take it on the chin
Let's go inside and dry our hide
Take a glass of gin

Catherine LoBosco


To the editor:
“We” will have a real exciting X-Mas
Full of fun and smiles
Take a trip to visit Mr. Santa
We'll enjoy those X-Mas miles
“We” singing Happy Jingle Bells
Passing homes with lights
Music playing hear them saying
God bless the holy nights
“We” wish all of you a blessed year
Be thankful you are alive
Money will get you what you want
But good health will help you survive

Catherine LoBosco

Thank You ‘Democrat'

To the editor:
For all the poems I have wrote
Some for the Democrat
Made me feel so special
Like I'm part of where you're at
A very pleasant paper I've learned quite a bit
Who is she who is he do they really fit
Thank you for accepting me and I try my best
Try to discuss what's hurting us
And also all of the rest
I also write some that make you smile and some right to your heart
Thank you for coming into my life
The Democrat is always a part

Catherine LoBosco

Negative Assumptions

To the editor:
I am replying to the open letter to me by Rebekah Creshkoff (Sullivan County Democrat December 3rd). She didn't like my letter that stated I was voting for Trump again.
Her “questions” to me imply that I must be a racist, do I long for “a solidly majority white population”? She also thinks I must be against clean air and water. She further suggests that I must be homophobic and anti-transgender because I “want people to lie every single day of their lives because they love people of the same gender or feel imprisoned in a body of the wrong sex?”
Then she suggests I must be for “weaker protection for workers, consumers and the environment”. Next, she paints me as a bigot who “discriminates against those who aren't white or Christian”. Lastly, she accuses me of missing “legalized segregation and women dying from unsafe abortions”.
Nothing could be further from the truth! Her letter is a perfect example of ASSUMPTION. She does not know me, but since she read my letter and I don't think like she does, therefore I must be a very bad person and she assumes the worst about me. That is her problem, not mine.

Denise Connolly

Good Old Days

To the editor:
An open letter to Rebekah Creshkoff who criticizes Denise Connolly (Dec. 3) for loving the “old America.”
She probably misses the patriotism of WWII and 9/11, respect for the flag, National Anthem & the Pledge, respect for law and order, wholesome sitcoms like Father Knows Best and The Waltons, lack of mass shootings, lack of drug abuse.
She missed the laws against abortion on demand up to and in some cases after the birth of the baby. She missed the common decency of years ago.
She longs for the innocence of the past.
It wasn't always perfect but in many cases, better than the sins of the present.

Fred Niessen
Pleasant Valley

Act of Kindness

To the editor:
Today my husband & I were the grateful recipients of a Random Act of Kindness. We went to have lunch at Pizza the Rock & were informed by the person in charge that a couple who had been sitting across from us, who we had no contact with, had paid our bill as they left. It was shocking but of course very exciting. With all that is going on in our country now with our President and the stress of the situation, it was wonderful to be in touch with such goodness.
There continues to be this feeling that those who see that our Constitution and our way of life are in danger by the actions of this President, are in some way ‘bad' people who are out to get him. No, we love our country and, want to protect it so that we don't wind up like the people of Hong Kong, having our lives in total chaos because we need to be protesting to protect our democratic life style.
Why aren't the people who love Trump aware of the dangers of Russia? I grew up with the total understanding of what that country was about & as far as I'm concerned, they are still the same, maybe worse; still out to get us and make themselves the dominant country in the world. People that are in denial that Russia interfered with and will again be trying to interfere with our elections, remind me of the people who refused to believe that Bush lied about Weapons of Mass Destruction and held onto that belief as being the truth for years after it was a fact that there were none.
I want to thank the couple who performed their random act of kindness, and to urge all people to think about the meaning of such acts. No matter what your belief, we need to be treating each other with more kindness.

Pamela Zaitchick
Glen Wild

Best money spent

To the editor:
In an era where many communities find themselves starved of local reporting as newspapers decline, suffering from the negative consequences of the inability to hold power to account and unable to celebrate/acknowledge all the day to day actions and accomplishments of its citizens, students, volunteers and athletes, we are blessed indeed to have multiple newspapers out there muck-racking and covering the myriad of actions and events that make up a community - be it government, scholastic, business or non-profit, be it good, bad, or ugly.
A community without a newspaper strains the community, and far too many communities are left to fill that void with national news that means little to each of us on a daily basis, if at all.
To all the publishers, editors, copywriters, opinion writers and gum-shoe reporters, thank you. I know it's the best couple of dollars I spend each week.

Chuck Petersheim
Catskill Farms

Separation of Christmas and State (and Peace on Earth, Goodwill toward All!)

To the editor:
I was dismayed to read the piece by Ed Townsend in “Here and There Beyond the News” in the December 3rd issue. As a member of this community, and a citizen of a nation with a proud if spurious claim of “separation of church and state,” the assertion that public communities (built of public tax-payer funds, Christian and non-Christian alike) should display the nativity scene and celebrate solely the Christmas holiday, showed a lack of empathy and welcome that is so necessary in our current world (and is especially valued this time of year).
As Americans, Mr. Townsend asserts that we can celebrate whatever holiday we desire; he then goes on to assert that people should say “Merry Christmas” instead of “Happy Holidays,” despite the fact that many people do not celebrate Christmas. Arguing for inclusion only to increase support for one's own side is a very clever yet detrimental game. Of course one may say what one likes—yes, say “Merry Christmas” if it brings you joy—flaunt your glittery Christmas sweaters, sing Bing Crosby until the reindeer come home! But, to say that public communities should spend public monies displaying one religion only on public property is not only unequal, it erodes the respect for difference that has made this nation so successful.
I find the lack of respect and warm welcome to be endemic of much of the societal conflict of today. It seems to me that Mr. Townsend would only like to embrace others if their ideas happen to exactly reflect his own, and all others should just get a lump of coal for the holidays.

Samara Ferris

On your way

To the editor:
Santa you're soon coming
Behind Thanksgiving Day
A little far don't have a car
But will be on your way
Dress up nice and freely
Bag upon your back
Notebook with all your kiddies
You'll soon begin to track
The X-Mas trees are waiting
Fill up down below
Can I ask you something Santa
Which way will you go
Wow - on your way you make our day
I'll gobble up my turkey
Super fine you're not in line
All excited feeling perky

Catherine LoBosco

The bad old days

To the editor:
This is an open letter to Denise Connolly, who recently wrote in these pages that she intends to vote for Trump again because she loves “the OLD America that he is trying to bring us back to.” She continues, “I hate the America the Democrats, ‘liberals' and leftists are turning this country into.”
Which makes me curious. Just what is it about the old America that you long for? Is it a solidly majority-white population? Polluted air and water? People who have to live a lie every single day of their lives because they love people of the same gender or feel imprisoned in a body of the wrong sex?
Perhaps it is weaker protections for workers, consumers and the environment that you yearn for. Or maybe you mean socially sanctioned sexism and discrimination against those who aren't white or Christian. Or is it legalized segregation and women dying from unsafe abortions that you miss?
Like it or not, societies change over time. The tide of history sweeps away the culture and mores of one's gauzily recalled youth, and there is no returning to them. Thank God.

Rebekah Creshkoff

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