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November 23, 2017 - 11:05am

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A few hundred people come out this morning getting thier excercise in before today's Thanksgiving holiday sponsored by The Kiwanis Club of Batavia.  This has been a great tradition enjoyed by many sponsored by the club.

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November 22, 2017 - 10:14pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in Main St. Pizza Company, batavia, business, news.

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Today, Vic Marchese, owner of Main St. Pizza Company, presented a $3,309 donation to Genesee Cancer Assistance. The funds were raised in October through the sale of large pizzas -- delivered in a pink pizza box -- with $1 from each large pizza sold going to the charity.

Pictured, Fred Hamilton, Lori Kurek, Sue Underwood, Nickie Fazio, and Vic Marchese.

November 22, 2017 - 10:06pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in BHS Drama Club, Batavia HS, batavia, news, arts, entertainment.

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Batavia High School's Drama Club performs "Sally Cotter and the Censored Stone," a parody by Dean O'Carroll, next weekend.

Showtimes are 7:30 p.m., Dec. 1 and 2, and 2 p.m. on Dec. 3.

Tickets are $8 for adults, $6 for students and seniors. Tickets are available at the door.

The cast:

  • Sally Cotter, Eryn Dunn
  • Sally's Mother, Tanner Kolb
  • Reubenon Ryebread, Cameron Bontrager
  • 1st Censor, Madeline Keenan
  • 2nd Censor, Alicia Scroger
  • Dave, Pierce Corbelli
  • Harmonica, Elise Hoerbelt
  • Ursa Malaise, Parise Ricks
  • Ed Molar, James Weatherbee
  • Professor Athena McDonaldsa, Tanner Kolb
  • Professor Shiftia Shape, Aubrey Towner
  • Professor Albatross Underdrawers, Evan Bellavia
  • Aaron A. Ardvarkovich, Gavin Tucker
  • Shea'mon Canavan, AT Thatcher
  • Navel Longfellow, Samuel Rigerman
  • Polly Pixie, Emily Kilner
  • Poppy Pixie, Riley MacDonough
  • London Liverwurst, Lillian Whiting
  • Val Crabby, Courtney Lougheed
  • Gerry Boyle, Oliver Havens
  • Freesia Chestnut, Jordyn Mott
  • Kitty Ball, Macayla Burke
  • Chloe Crane, Claire Griffith-Sarkis
  • Patty Petronia, Laura Lepkowski
  • Hedgerow the Owl, Phoebe Fryer

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November 22, 2017 - 9:43pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in GCC, Forum Players, entertainment, music, news.

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Genesee Community College's Forum Players will perform "Strong Kids" Children's Theatre at 7 p.m., Dec. 1, at the Stuart Steiner Theater. 

The musical celebrates confidence and believing in one's self while simultaneously addressing bullying, peer pressure, and rejection often faced by children today. It is a musical compilation of poems, new and original monologues, and some classic favorites from "Hairspray," "The King and I," "You're a Good Man, Charlie Brown," "Wicked," and "The Lion King."

The cast of "Strong Kids" are all GCC students and includes singers, dancers and soloists. 

The cast:

  • Abanoor Abdi, Vocal Ensemble, Rochester
  • Celeste Brownell, president of Forum Players 2017-2018, Vocal Soloist, Vocal Ensemble, Dance Ensemble, Bergen
  • Chrisjon Canty, Vocal Soloist, Vocal Ensemble, Rochester
  • Marissa Carbonell, Vocal Soloist, Vocal Ensemble, Dance Ensemble, Batavia
  • Emily Carey, Vocal Ensemble, Medina
  • Joseph Cartwright II, Dance Ensemble, Hunt
  • Jamie Crawford, Dance Ensemble, Mount Morris
  • Jack Diskin, Vocal Soloist, Le Roy
  • Kayla Lander, Dance Ensemble, Dance Soloist, Mayfield
  • Troy McCrorey, Vocal Ensemble, Chester, S.C.
  • Liliam Montilla, Vocal Soloist, Vocal Ensemble, New York City
  • Rebecca Naber, Dance Ensemble, Hamburg
  • Erin Phillips, Vocal Soloist, Batavia
  • Cameron Sanzo, Dance Ensemble, Batavia
  • Jennifer Schreiber, Dance Ensemble, Rochester
  • Cody Taylor, Vocal Soloist, Dance Ensemble, Vocal Ensemble, Medina
  • Taylor Wilson, Vocal Soloist, Vocal Ensemble, Dance Ensemble, Cheektowaga
  • Maki Ishikawa, Vocal Soloist, Vocal Ensemble, Japan
  • Sayaka Miura, Vocal Soloist, Chiryu City, Japan
  • Natsumi Sasabe, Dance Ensemble, Vocal Soloist, Japan
  • Akane Hagiwara, Dance Ensemble, Japan

"Strong Kids" is directed by Maryanne Arena.

Tickets to see "Strong Kids" are available now and are $8 for adults, $5 for seniors (55+) and GCC faculty/staff. Students and children pay $3, and GCC alumni with ID will receive a $2 discount on an adult ticket. To reserve seats, contact the GCC box office at [email protected] or (585) 345-6814.

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November 22, 2017 - 8:55pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in crime, batavia, news, notify.
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       Joseph James

Joseph B. James, 36, of Central Avenue, Batavia, is charged with two counts of criminal sale of a controlled substance, 3rd, and two counts of criminal possession of a controlled substance, 3rd.

James is accused of selling crack cocaine to an agent of the Local Drug Task Force on two occasions last month. 

Task Force members arrested James at the County Courts Facility while he was being sentenced in an unrelated case.

He was jailed without bail.

His arrest comes following an investigation into the sale, transportation and possession of crack cocaine in the City of Batavia.

The District Attorney's Office assisted in the investigation.

November 22, 2017 - 8:41pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in crime, batavia, news.
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       Adante Davis

The final defendant in a four-man team involved in a home invasion of a residence on Central Avenue in October 2016 entered a guilty plea to attempted burglary in the second degree in Court today with an agreement to serve five years in prison.

That's the sentence his compatriots received after their guilty pleas earlier this year.

Adante Davis will be sentenced at 1:45 p.m., Dec. 21.

Davis managed to evade capture for a year while Daniel Gilbert, Marquis Saddler and Oliver Thomas all agreed to guilty pleas and are now serving five-year prison terms.

The attack occurred at about 11 p.m. Oct. 28 last year. The four men entered the apartment and, according to witness statements obtained by The Batavian, several family members and a friend were at the residence when they heard a knock on the door. 

When one of the residents answered the door, four men rushed in and started hitting one of the men in the home. A resident chased them off with a baseball bat and then there was a confrontation in the street before all four men fled the scene.

November 22, 2017 - 8:21pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in Deal of the Day, advertisement.

Reminders of how the Deal of the Day program works:

  • To make purchases, you must be registered. Deal of the Day uses a registration system that is not connected to the registration for commenting on The Batavian (the main user login in the upper left of the home page).
  • Once registered you must sign in using the "sign in" link in this box.
  • You click on the orange button, which appears if the item is not sold out, and it takes you to a PayPal button. This allows you to pay either with your PayPal account or with a credit card/debit card. The login for PayPal is completely separate from our accounts.
  • The first person to successfully complete the PayPal transaction wins the gift certificate.
  • You are eligible to buy the same item only once in a four-month period. We use the registration system to track this for you so you don't have to.
  • Only one gift certificate from the same business PER HOUSEHOLD is allowed in each four month period. We do not have a way to automatically track duplicate purchases within a household; however, if we notice such a purchase, we reserve the right to cancel the purchase and refund the purchase money. Each individual purchaser must use his or her own PayPal account for purchases. It's important that participating businesses not be asked to redeem multiple gift certificates from the same person/family at the same time.
  • Gift certificates should be used within 30 days of receipt.

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November 22, 2017 - 6:30pm


Great home featuring kitchen with breakfast nook, formal dining room, living room, three bedrooms, full bath on second floor, has new tile on floor and subway tile on bathtub walls. Hardwood floors and natural woodwork throughout! Hot water heater 2012, washer and dryer 2016, glass block basement windows 2011. Call Michelle Dills, Howard Hanna at 585-343-6750 or click here for more information on this listing.
 

November 22, 2017 - 3:38pm
posted by Billie Owens in business, news, steve hawley, Small business Saturday.

Press release from Assemblyman Steve Hawley:

“As we kick off the bustling holiday season on Black Friday, it is important to consider shopping at some of our locally owned, small businesses this weekend for Small Business Saturday," Hawley said. "The dedicated men and women that own and operate these businesses take pride in the products they sell and are crucial in growing our local economy.

“As a small business owner/operator for several decades, I know firsthand the trials and tribulations of our state’s business owners and have strived to become their voice in Albany. By patronizing these tremendous companies this weekend you will undoubtedly take part in helping to create local jobs, stimulate our economy and make Western New York a fantastic place to do business.”

November 22, 2017 - 3:14pm

Attention shoppers! The day after tomorrow is "Plaid Friday" at the Genesee County Animal Shelter and all adoption fees for all adult dogs and cats will be half price.

The pet sale lasts through Sunday, Nov. 26.

The animals must be at least a year old "qualify for this amazing deal." Usually, the adoption fee is $60.

If an animal is not spayed or neutered, an additional $35 deposit is required.

VFA rescue dogs are also half off the usual adoption fees of $50 to $150.

All shelter animals are current with vaccines; dogs are tested for heartworm and cats for FeLV/FIV. Most of them are also spayed or neutered.

Bring a leash for your new canine friend and a carrier for your new feline friend.

Make your holidays extra special with a new Best Friend Forever!

The Genesee County Animal Shelter is located at 3841 W. Main Street Road, Batavia.

Hours are:

  • 1-3 p.m., Sunday, Monday, Tuesday, Friday
  • 11 a.m. to 1 p.m., Saturday
  • 1-3 and 7-9 p.m., Wednesday
  • CLOSED THURSDAY
November 22, 2017 - 2:43pm
posted by Billie Owens in news, accidents, crime, Bethany, notify.

Press release from the GC Sheriff's Office:

A 30-year-old Perry man is charged with DWI after a rollover accident early this morning on Route 63 near Fargo Road in Bethany.

Kenneth Wayne Wilson Jr., of Burke Hill Road, is also charged with: speed not reasonable and prudent; uninspected motor vehicle; moving from lane unsafely; and leaving the scene of a property damage accident.

The actual location of the single-vehicle accident was determined to be 5604 Ellicott Street Road (Route 63) and it occurred at 1:24 a.m.

Deputies responded and after an investigation they arrested Wilson.

It is alleged that he was driving while intoxicated. He was transported to Strong Memorial Hospital via ambulance. He was released on appearance tickets returnable to Bethany Town Court at 7 p.m. on Jan. 9.

The case was investigated by Deputy Travis DeMuth, assisted by Deputy Jeremy McClellan.

For previous coverage, click here.

November 22, 2017 - 2:18pm
posted by Mike Pettinella in news, sports, Bowling.

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Batavian Paul Spiotta became only the second bowler to win a GRUSBC Masters and Senior Masters title when he captured the 12th annual Genesee Region USBC Senior Masters tournament on Nov. 11 at Medina Lanes.

The 60-year-old right-hander defeated 50-year-old lefty Mike Johnson, also of Batavia, in an exciting final match, winning a ninth and 10th frame roll-off, 59-40, after both bowlers put up scores of 246.

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Mike Pettinella’s Pin Points column will appear on Friday this week.

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Spiotta strung four strikes before leaving one pin on his final ball, forcing Johnson to get three strikes to win. Johnson got the first two -- the second one on the cross -- before leaving a solid 7 pin, setting up the roll-off.

In "overtime," after Johnson spared, Spiotta delivered three straight strikes to come away victorious.

Spiotta said he was “very focused” throughout the tournament, and noted that his carry got better after the qualifying round.

“I had a nice line to the pocket but I was also tripping a few 4-pins when needed plus I had a crossover strike and a cave-in strike that really helped,” he said.

After he and Johnson tied, all Spiotta thought about was coming up with strikes in the roll-off.

“All I knew was that if I could keep striking, I’d win and that’s what happened,” he said. “Hats off to Mike Johnson in his first Senior Masters, he really bowled very well down the stretch.”

The victory was worth $260 for Spiotta, a former GRUSBC association president, who averaged 226 for his seven games -- qualifying 10th with 630 before posting 485 for two games in the second round and 223 for his one game in the third round.

He also won a free entry into the GRUSBC Masters in February and a plaque from Joe’s Awards & Trophies. The event drew 41 entrants.

Johnson earned $150 for placing second while Jim Foss of Medina won $100 for placing third. Johnson defeated Foss, 267-192, in the first game of the three-bowler stepladder finals to earn the right to face top-seeded Spiotta.

Jim Pursel of Batavia, Rick Saunders of Batavia and Phil Schepis of Medina finished in the fourth through sixth spots, winning $70 each, while Bill Logan of Albion, Fred Gravanda of Batavia, Bob Hodgson of Medina, Scott Shields of Batavia, John Wolff of Batavia and Joe Trigilio of Attica also cashed.

Spiotta joins Gravanda, his cousin, as the only Masters and Senior Masters champions.

For complete tournament statistics, go to www.bowlgr.com.

Photo at top - Paul Spiotta and Mike Johnson.

November 22, 2017 - 1:46pm
posted by Maria Pericozzi in Rudely Stamp'd, news, GCC, history.

If Thomas Jefferson and John Adams were alive today, what would they say to each other?

Genesee Community College associate professors Derek Maxfield (History) and Tracy Ford (English) are teaming up to create an imagined conversation between the two founding fathers in retirement.

The men had been close friends, but their friendship fell apart and they didn’t speak for 10 years," Maxfield said. “When they were both retired from politics, their friendship was renewed through correspondence."

Jefferson was in Monticello, Va., and Adams was in Quincy, Mass., when they began writing to each other.

“This conversation that we’re going to stage, while it physically never happened, we’re using the correspondence, to form what we say to each other,” Maxfield said, adding that the aim is to make Jefferson and Adams more human, to promote a better understanding of them both.

At 7 p.m. on March 7 at GCC, they will have an advance presentation of the program for the public. They will reading from a script at podiums, as a warm-up to work through the script.

Maxfield will be Adams; and Ford will be Jefferson in the program.

When Maxfield first read the correspondence between the historic figures, he wondered what they would say to each other now.

“If they did see each other face to face again, what would that look like?” Maxfield said. “That’s what we’re aiming for.”

The associate professors named the group after a quote from Shakespeare because they were looking for a unique name.

“We wanted it to have some history or literature flavor to it,” Maxfield said. “We came across this and it seemed perfect, because both Tracy and I are 'rudely stamp’d.' ”

"Rudely Stamp’d" has a kickstarter campaign to fund the costumes and props, located here. Maxfield said they want the most authentic-looking costumes for the program.

“We’re hoping to raise $6,000 before Dec. 25,” Maxfield said.

They hope to expand the group eventually, to include other programs, including an Abraham Lincoln and Stephen Douglas debate.

Maxfield said he hopes to bring other living historians into Rudely Stamp’d.

“The idea is eventually to bring in select others,” Maxfield said.

Rudely Stamp’d is not a business.

“It’s not something we’re going to make money with,” Maxfield said. “It’s something we want to make available for anyone who is interested.”

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Associate Professor Tracy Ford (submitted photo)

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Associate Professor Derek Maxfield (submitted photo)

November 22, 2017 - 11:54am
posted by Howard B. Owens in bergen, news.

A caller from Insurance Auto Auctions, at 7149 Apple Tree Ave., Bergen, says a bullet hit their building about an hour ago.

A deputy is dispatched.

November 22, 2017 - 11:44am
posted by Howard B. Owens in Pontillo's, batavia's original, batavia, business, news, notify.

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As friends and customers have found out her plans, people have told Kathy Ferrara, "This must have been your dream all along" -- becoming owner of Batavia's Original.

That's not the case, said Ferrara yesterday, hours after closing a deal with the previous owner, Jeff Reddish, of Rochester, to buy the popular local restaurant.

"I never planned on buying it," Ferrara said. "I just enjoyed what I did. I did it 100 percent. I was trustworthy. This wasn’t my plan. It was definitely that God wanted me here. I’ve tried leaving a couple of times and He made it really clear that this is where I’m supposed to be. He made this happen so only good things are going to come from that."

Before Batavia's Original was Batavia's Original, it was Pontillo's, Batavia's first pizza parlor, and Ferrara started working for Sam and Betty Pontillo 29 years ago as a waitress.

Sam and Betty, she said, took her under their wings and taught her the pizza business from top to bottom. She was trained in every job in the restaurant.

By the time Sam and Betty's sons took over, she was a manager.  

When that business collapsed in 2010, Ferrara was the one who broke the news to the staff.

When Reddish bought the business and the building at 500 E. Main St. out of bankruptcy, it was Ferrara that Reddish called to run the business.

"Jeff Reddish taught me the ins and outs of the business," Ferrara said. "He taught me how to make payroll and meet food costs together. He was a good teacher. He was great to work for, a really good boss, fair, basically let me do things the way we've been doing all these years."

Earlier this year, Ferrara asked Reddish, who owns restaurants in Rochester, if she could become a partner in the Batavia location.

"He wasn’t looking to sell," Ferrara said. "He wasn’t going to put it on the market. That wasn’t in his plan at all. I approached him and he said ‘I’m not looking to sell, but I would sell it to you.’ He’s the one who got the ball rolling and made it happen.”

Ferrara is a graduate of Pembroke High School and Genesee Community College. She is married with three children, Ashley, Mary-Grace, and Daniel, and one grandson.

Local ownership of the restaurant is important to Ferrara, she said. She will have more control over local promotions, support of local charities and organizations, and who she hires as vendors.

"Now that it is locally owned again, that makes a big difference," Ferrara said. "Everybody I’ve dealt with so far, the website designer, maintenance, plumbers, they’re all local. So everything is back local, in Genesee County, so that only helps the community."

She will keep the name, Batavia's Original, picked after Reddish learned he couldn't retain the name Pontillo's. Ferrara said it only makes sense.

"This is the original pizza of Batavia," she said. "It’s the same recipe. We haven’t changed any of the recipes."

The return of Pontillo's/Batavia's Original to local ownership will be celebrated with a ribbon cutting at noon on Saturday.

Ferrara said she will also continue Sam and Betty's tradition of taking good care of the staff and ensuring restaurant guests get great service.

"Everybody is treated fairly," Ferrara said. "It’s a fun environment to work. I always work around their schedules. The staff is mostly college students and high schoolers."

Being able to do more for the staff of 35 employees is another reason Ferrara was motivated to buy the business, she said. Taking care of employees pays off in better customer service.

"Anybody who comes here to eat will always leave with a good experience," Ferrara said. "Everyone who works here gives 100 percent. I get compliments all day long about the staff. People say they look like they love it here and they do. That’s something the Pontillos taught me, is how to treat the staff. Sam and Betty treated everybody like family."

Photos by Steve Ognibene.

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November 22, 2017 - 11:40am

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As they approach the Thanksgiving holiday, Tim and Amanda Gleba are thankful for being able to “live off the land” on their 50-acre organic farm and, most recently, for the Batavia Town Planning Board’s approval to build a pond for agricultural purposes.

Town planners on Tuesday night OK'd a special use permit for the couple to construct a half-acre pond behind their home at 3726 South Main Street Road.

 “The pond will be used for irrigation and for watering our livestock,” Tim said, adding that working the farm is a labor of love. “It’s a hobby of ours; something we really enjoy.”

Both Tim and Amanda, Batavia High School graduates who got married in June 2016, have full-time professions.

He is a precision machining instructor for Genesee Valley Educational Partnership at the Batavia campus on State Street Road, and Amanda (maiden name, Torrey) is a senior food tech at Perry Ice Cream in Akron.

They farm about five acres of their property, growing organic vegetables and keeping free-range chickens for eggs, Tim said. They are working toward certification through the Northeast Organic Farming Association.

The Glebas also planted Christmas trees that will be ready for sale in about five years, and plan to develop a certified tree farm.

The couple says they are committed to this lifestyle -- and sharing the fruits of their labor with others. They credited Tom Ryan of Ryan’s Rose Organic Farm on Rose Road for helping them in their endeavor.

“We’re homesteaders,” Amanda said. “That was the main thing that got us started … for us to benefit from the land. Now, the community can benefit as well.”

Public participation is possible due to the fact that Gleba Farms LLC is a Community Supported Agriculture farm that offers yearly memberships to people interested in obtaining their vegetables and eggs. Vegetables include corn, peppers, tomatoes, cabbage, squash and pumpkins.

When available (produce is seasonal, of course), folks can come to the farm to pick up their vegetables, Amanda said, noting that membership dues enable them to keep the service going.

The Glebas also sell meat from heritage breed turkeys and American guinea hogs (a gourmet meat), which they send out for processing.

For more information about the CSA, go to www.glebafarmsny.com.

Tim said they will start work on the pond next May or June. The only requirement of the special use permit is that town engineers must approve the design to ensure that elevations and overflow systems are built correctly.

In other action, Planners:

-- Set a public hearing for 7 p.m. Dec. 19 in connection with the proposed re-subdivision by developer Peter Zeliff at Oakwood Estates off East Main Street Road.

The modifications, which have been approved by the Town Zoning Board of Appeals, focus on dividing 35 parcels into 70 parcels, paving the way to build duplexes or smaller single-family homes.

-- Approved a request for two signs at the new T-Mobile location at 8400 Lewiston Road, next to Total Tan. The business was expected to open today.

-- Learned that QDOBA Mexican Eats will occupy the building on Veterans Memorial Drive, next to Home Depot, that is being constructed to also house Five Star Urgent Care. The structure is about 25 percent complete.

QDOBA, according to Wikipedia, is a chain of fast casual restaurants in the United States and Canada serving Mexican-style cuisine. The company is a wholly owned subsidiary of Jack in the Box since its purchase from ACI Capital, Western Growth Capital, and other private investors in 2003.

There are QDOBA locations in the Buffalo, Niagara Falls and Rochester areas.

Photo -- Amanda and Tim Gleba at Gleba Farms LLC. Photo by Mike Pettinella.

November 22, 2017 - 10:10am
posted by Maria Pericozzi in batavia, news, fire services.

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Around 61 percent of firefighters get occupational cancer in the line of duty, according to an article in the NFPA Journal. (NFPA stands for National Fire Protection Association.)

Lieutenant Mahlon Irish Jr., of the City of Ithaca Fire Department, is one of those 61 percent. Irish was diagnosed with prostate cancer in 2014. Firefighters from four different counties traveled to Batavia City Centre on Monday to hear him share his story as a prostate cancer survivor.

“We have proof that there is a link between our job, whether it's volunteer or career, as a firefighter, and cancer,” Irish said. “We have proof that’s happening.”

Irish has almost 44 years in the fire service. He spent 30 years as a NYS Fire Instructor, served the City of Ithaca for more than 22 years as a firefighter and lieutenant, and past chief and current member of the Homer Fire Department.

“The risk doesn’t end when we hang up our gear,” Irish said. “Our exposure to some of these chemicals go on for [a long] time.”

Irish educates firefighters about the increased dangers of cancer. He said a lot of the information from studies he shared is relatively new.

“We did not know about a lot of this five years ago,” Irish said.  

Multiple chemicals are released in fires, including hydrogen cyanide, an extremely poisonous gas that was used in gas chambers.

“Because of what is burning today, we are seeing more and more hydrogen cyanide,” Irish said.

Fires 20 or 30 years ago were “natural fires,” mostly wood, Irish said. They are seeing more hydrogen cyanide being released, because of carpets, plastics, TVs, and other objects that are burning.

Irish spoke about the contamination of firefighters' bodies from today’s fires and how it affects them. He recommended for firefighters that go into a fire, they need to shower and wash their gear immediately afterward.

“[Chemicals] still get there,” Irish said. “They penetrate our turnout gear, our undergarments, all the way through T-shirts and gets to our skin.”

Stefano Napolitano, Batavia’s fire chief, said they are looking to enact different methodologies and techniques to reduce the exposure.

“Cancer doesn’t know career or volunteer,” Napolitano said. “Cancer doesn’t know urban, suburb and rural.”

Irish shared his story about issues of being diagnosed, his pre-and post-radical prostatectomy surgery, and the physical, mental and financial impacts of living with prostate cancer.

“I am living with cancer and I made the choice to not let this cancer negatively affect my life,” Irish said. “It has affected my life in some ways I can’t change, but I choose to make it on the positive side.”

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Irish showed the audience multiple hoods, comparing them, discussing which ones would protect firefighters the best. 

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