Category Archives: Columnists

Days after a tragic event

by Roy Hodge

During all that has been going on since the chaos of the Marathon bombing in Boston, I have been thinking about another tragic event that played out over several days during the aftermath of the assassination of President John F. Kennedy in 1963.

President Kennedy was fatally shot by Lee Harvey Oswald in Dallas, Texas while in a motorcade with his wife, Jacqueline, and Texas Governor John Connally and his wife.

As well as the assassination itself, other prime stories developed, and like the assassination, some of them were shown live on television. We were glued to our television sets from Friday afternoon until after JFK’s state funeral on Monday and beyond.

Dallas Police Department Officer J. D. Tippit, according to the Warren Commission and the House Select Committee on Assassinations, was shot and killed by Oswald less than an hour after the assassination of President Kennedy.

On Sunday, two days after assassinating President Kennedy and Officer Tippit, Oswald was being led through the basement of Dallas Police Headquarters while being transferred to the county jail when local nightclub operator Jack Ruby stepped from the crowd and shot Oswald.

Ruby was convicted of Oswald’s murder, appealed his conviction and death sentence and was granted a new trial. As the date for his new trial was being set he became ill and died of lung cancer.

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“Sweet Caroline” is a soft rock song which was written and performed by Neil Diamond and officially released on June 28, 1969. In a 2007 interview, Diamond revealed that the inspiration for “Sweet Caroline” was President John F. Kennedy’s daughter, Caroline Kennedy, who was eleven years old at the time.

Diamond sang the song to her at her 50th birthday celebration in 2007.

“Sweet Caroline” has been played at Boston’s Fenway Park since at least 1997, and has been played in the middle of the eighth inning since 2002.

April 16, 2013, the day after the Boston Marathon bombing, the New York Yankees, longtime Red Sox rivals, announced that they would play the song during their home game, preceded by a moment of silence.

Major League ball parks around the U.S. paid tribute to those affected by the Marathon bombings by playing “Sweet Caroline” over the loud speakers at their ball parks.

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New grandchild

Leon Archer
Leon Archer

by Leon Archer

I drove by a restaurant just a few days ago and saw a sign advertising Bullhead dinners and I was almost tempted to stop.

I hope it wasn’t a mistake. I expect to catch my own in a week or so, but a side trip to Seattle was in the cards first, so Mr. Whiskers will be safe from me for a few more days.

I did stop at Greene Point up on Sandy Pond to see what the rquirements were for launching a boat there and I inquired about the bullhead fishing. The owner said that they hadn’t been biting much and that even the crappie fishing was sort of slow.

I did get the information I needed about launching after closing hours and I wasn’t upset by the fishing report seeing as how I wouldn’t be hitting the water just yet anyway.

Ever since my father died years ago, my fishing at Sandy Pond became a lot more sporadic. Dad used to call me just about every good afternoon during the spring bullhead run to see if I could make the run up to go fishing.

Unless I had other commitments, I usually gave Sweet Thing a kiss and loaded up my gear and spent the evening with my Dad.

I truly believe there was something special, almost magical, about those evenings we spent together. I know I always came away with a whole lot more than fish.

Now here we are just a half a week from turkey season and I know that you turkey hunters are itching to have at them. I’ve heard a couple birds, but I won’t get out until May 5th at least, so maybe one of you will beat me to them. I know, I know, what is so important that it keeps me out of the woods? It’s a fair question so I’ll fill you in.

My son, Ben, and his wife, Meghan, became first time parents less than two weeks ago. Sweet Thing and I had been planning to go out and get our hands on our new grandchild as soon as we could and thus our current trip to Seattle.

Beckett Hunter Archer was born April 16, 2013, and the little guy weighed in at seven pounds and 13 ounces. After seeing him, I have to tell you he is a keeper. He looks a lot like his father did when he came into the world. I tell Ben that Beckett looks a lot like me, only younger and with darker hair, but mostly he looks like himself.

So while you lucky people are out harassing the turkeys, I’ll be patting and rocking one good looking baby any time I can get him away from grandma.

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Taxi stand

JerryHoganKasperek_Wby Jerry Kasperek

Out shopping one Sunday afternoon, Ed and I bumped into Eugene “Sonny” Huard: “How did you ever forget Sully’s?” he greeted me with.

You know, Sully’s, the old bar off West Broadway!

“Of course, I remember it!” I said — now that you mention it — “It was on a side street behind the west side Fire Station.”

Well, there was nothing to do but to look it up in the 1953 City Directory. Its address was 259 West Seventh Street; William D. Sullivan and his wife Eva were the proprietors; and its correct title was Sully’s Inn.

And, as its faithful patrons fondly recall, it was a favorite “watering hole” for locals who needed to be refreshed by a couple of beers and a few friendly faces and, according to Sonny, “There was chicken, too!”

I got a call from Al Myhill, the decorated WWII veteran who will be honored at Fulton’s annual Memorial Day Salute Parade. He said the taxi stand I wrote about was owned by his in-laws, Earl Pealow and his wife and that he drove taxi for them.

Their fleet consisted of a white Dodge and two Plymouths. Taxi service was mostly around the city, 50 cents a trip, but would go outside of the city for a couple of bucks if asked to. They put chains on the taxis in the winter because there was no such thing as snow tires.

Al recalled Policeman Tom Alnutt on his beat stopping by the taxi stand.

Coincidentally, Tom Alnutt, owner of Riverside Auto, also called me. He said his parents Tom and Mabel Alnutt owned the taxi stand when he was a child.

And, my good friend Ellie Roach Pryor told me as a teenager she filled in for her father answering the phone at the stand. Who knew!

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Bodley’s Got Talent recap

Bodley-RothrockKate_Wby Katie Rothrock

Ten days! The night that many juniors have been looking forward to all of high school is just in 10 days.

Prom tickets are being sold at the lunch room for $30 each until April 29.

Guests from other schools have to get a guest pass from the Main Office before purchasing. Students must buy their prom tickets and return their signed contracts by April 29 or they will not be able to attend.

Bodley’s Got Talent consisted of so many talented students and it was so hard for the judges to pick just a few winners.

The acts varied from singing and dance to musical instruments and more.

The winner of Bodley’s Got Talent was dancer Julia Fisch for the second year in a row.

Guitar player Justin Purtell received second place and Irish dancers Ashley Grey and Angela Paul took third place.

The Audience Favorite Award went to singer Neal Burke and Alex LaRock took Most Unique with “the cup song.”

Lastly, the “Gave It Their All” award went to singers Shakeemah Hordge and Erica Perwitz. Congratulations to all the winners and everyone who participated!

To read the rest of the column, pick up a copy of The Valley News. You can subscribe by calling 598-6397 or click on the link on our home page.

Daybreak Curative

by Jim Farfaglia

Daybreak Curative


The six of them wander into my yard,

tender noses to the early-spring grass,

searching for the sustenance

our deep winter has denied them.


Different sizes, different shades of brown,

and one, I notice, favoring a front leg;

hoof grazing ground with each labored step.



From one of winter’s traps?

From some aspiring hunter?

From the catchall of life’s sorrows?


When the others move on, she stays;

something in this space healing her.

I watch, feeling her warm my winter-heart…

then, taking a tender step,


I start the foraging of my day.

Light in the Darkness: April 24, 2013

by Pastor David Grey

“And now I will send the Holy Spirit, just as my Father promised. But stay here in the city until the Holy Spirit comes and fills you with power from heaven.” — Luke 24:49

For the next several weeks, I will focus on a subject that has been largely neglected in the church with far-reaching consequences.

I refer to the ministry of the Holy Spirit in the life of the believer. Oh, we hear much about the gifts and dramatic manifestations of the Spirit but little about His actual work in us; little about the necessity of walking carefully and consistently in the Spirit and even less yet about the holiness He desires to produce in us, though this holiness is the very reason He was sent to us.

This neglect is why we see so little of His power in the church, the body of Christ. It is why so many have fallen into the error of the Galatian believers who Paul said began their new lives in the Spirit, but were now trying to perfect their faith in the flesh.

This general failure in the church is the reason, Samuel Chadwick, writing more than a century ago, concluded that, “The Holy Spirit has been shut out from the province in which He is indispensable. Christianity has been reconstructed without Him.”

The Christian life simply is not possible without the Holy Spirit. Anything we might try to pass off as Christian without Him falls into the category Paul spoke of as having a form of godliness while denying the only power that can produce true godliness in one’s life.

Paul actually said that we should have nothing to do with people who profess to be believers but live that way. (2 Timothy 3:5). Undoubtedly this is so that the world and believers, alike, would not be confused about which life is Christian.

That the believer would have power for holy living is the whole reason for “The Incarnation of the Holy Spirit.”

This phrase may seem strange since you have probably never heard nor even thought of Pentecost in those terms. Neither have many others, evidently, for when I typed that phrase into Google, the only responses that came back related to the Holy Spirit’s role in the incarnation of Jesus Christ.

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Back from Florida

Leon Archer
Leon Archer

by Leon Archer

I was hoping that the weather would be a little more welcoming, but we are home all the same.

We left temperatures in the high 80s on Monday and enjoyed the mid 70s as we travelled up through the Carolinas and Virginia.

Things started to change by degrees Wednesday as we moved through Pennsylvania and then New York. By the time we were unloading some of the items from our truck, the afternoon temperatures were diving and we locked the truck, leaving the rest until the next day.

There would be no night crawlers on our first night home — that was for sure.

The pontoon boat travelled very well on our new trailer, and our truck hauled them both with ease. I think the most pleasant thing was having a trailer on which all the lights worked without a bunch of dinging on my part.

I get really bent out of shape sometimes when lights absolutely resist working properly on a trailer, and it’s not pretty.

I hope everyone read the information about bears from the DEC a couple weeks ago and took it to heart. While bears are seldom seen right here in the Fulton area, it is just a matter of time before readers will start seeing them or signs of their presence.


To read the rest of the column, pick up a copy of The Valley News. You can subscribe by calling 598-6397 or click on the link on our home page.