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Local Civil Air Patrol Cadets earn awards

By Steve Ognibene


The United States Air Force Auxiliary Civil Air Patrol presented awards in a ceremony Thursday evening at The Northgate Free Methodist, 350 Bank St., Batavia.

The CAP Cadet Program introduces thousands of young people between the ages of 12 and 18 to aviation, and offers them summer programs, including some that offer an opportunity to solo in a light airplane at low cost. The CAP Cadet Program is designed to motivate and develop well-rounded young people, who in turn will become model citizens and the future leaders of our nation.

CAP cadets progress at their own pace through a 15-step program that includes aerospace education, leadership training, physical fitness and moral leadership. Cadets can compete for academic scholarships to further their studies in such areas as engineering, science, aircraft mechanics and aerospace medicine. They can also compete for scholarships leading to solo flight training. Cadets have an opportunity to go overseas in exchange programs; some of these exchange cadets get a chance to fly with foreign air forces.

Photo from left is: Cadet Commander C/Capt. Kristen Stewart (Batavia Composite Squadron), Lt. Col. Charles Miller, NY Wing Cadet Programs Officer who presented the awards, C/Capt. Alex Dougherty (Condor Composite Squadron, Perry/Warsaw), and Cadet Deputy Commander  C/Capt. Andersen Campbell (Batavia Composite Squadron) for earning their Amelia Earhart Award.

Not pictured but who earned the General Billy Mitchell Award is C/Capt. Kristen Blue (Condor Composite Squadron, Perry/Warsaw).   

For more information to join the Batavia Composite Squadron , contact Commander 1st Lt. John H. VanderSypen or the Perry location contact: Commander Captain Michael Akey

Save a Life Tour: Alcohol Awareness program

By Julia Ferrini



The last text he sent, before hitting an Amish buggy with three children inside, was "I love you" to his wife. He's not even sure if he was looking at the road at the time of the accident. The next thing he knew, the windshield shattered and when he stopped, a person rolled off the roof of his van and onto the hood.

Debbie was struck by a teen who was texting while getting her mail from her roadside mailbox. She now has limited mobility, memory loss and other health issues. The accident left her entirely dependent on relatives. Debbie doesn't remember the accident at all. She went from being active to inactive in a just a second. 

“I made the choice that texting was more important to me than those two men were to their families,” said a young man. “That accident was preventable. I just had to put my phone away and drive.”

These stories and others were shown to Alexander and Warsaw high school students Friday during the Save a Life, Alcohol Awareness tour program at Alexander High School. The presentation, given by tour manager Clay Martin, is to put a spotlight on what drivers do in their cars -- it matters, even if there are no passengers.

“There's no message that would be worth picking up that phone,” Martin said. “Remember, many people may not get a chance to see these videos, but if you make it a point to remember, the avalanche of waiting until it's safe to write that text will propel and maybe it will start a chain of safer driving.”

The Save A Life Tour is a comprehensive high-impact, safe-driving awareness program that informs, educates and demonstrates the potentially deadly consequences resulting from poor choices and decisions made by a driver. The program specifically places emphasis on distracted and impaired driving, driver experience, improper driver behavior, and seat belt usage. The Department of Defense, as well as the Connecticut and Rhode Island departments of transportation, also use this program.

“All good driving begins with making simple habits,” Martin said. “Most people pick up their cell phone at a stop light, but most accidents occur at an intersection. You have to be prepared and pay attention. You have to be aware of not only your actions but those who are around you as well.”

Just a few seconds of distraction can take you the distance of a football field when driving at 55 mph. According to Martin, a drunk driver has driven 327 times before something happens. In 2012, a total of 3,326 people died in distracted-driving-related accidents and more than 421,000 people sustained injuries.

Alcohol has an amazing way of blurring the consequences, Martin told the teens. “Alcohol gets silly names like 'liquid courage' and 'beer muscles', but what it really does is put a barrier between you and a rational choice.

“There is a list of people in your phone that you can call for a ride,” Martin said. “I bet if you start in the As, by the time you reach the Cs you could have someone willing to pick you up on Christmas Day during a snowstorm.”

Not only did the students view a presentation, two simulators were set up for them to try to experience what it was like when the driver is distracted behind the wheel or has been drinking.

“It was hard to do,” said Alexander Middle/High School Principal Shannon Whitcomb. “It got more difficult as I kept going.”

“I think it has an impact. I don't know that we can determine how much, but you can tell by the attentiveness of our students that they were learning from the presentation and hopefully help them with choices in their future,” said Alexander School Superintendent Kathleen Maerten. “It’s providing education in a realistic manner. The experiential part is certainly important. The stories shared on the video have an impact as well. I think his point is that, even if you're not the driver and you're the passenger, you can advise the driver. The responsibility is not only in the hands of the driver it's the passengers as well.” 

Alexander High School senior Raven Quackenbush said “The scariest thing about it is something happening to my family. I’d rather it happen to me, than the ones I care about.”

“I have texted when I was driving and I swerved, but I don't do that anymore,” said Alexander senior Jessica Meyers. “I'm so aware of what I'm doing that it's not worth it. When you're driving with other people that are in your car, you're responsible for their lives. I appreciate it when parents trust me.”

Quackenbush said: “You have to ask yourself -- 'Is this more important than my life?' It's not too hard to say hey, can you check that for me. You can pull over for five seconds.” 

The Alexander Central School Parent Teacher Association sponsored the program as a way to remind students to make good decisions.

“It’s especially important because our prom is next weekend,” said Alexander Students Against Destructive Decisions (SADD) student President Hunter Doran. “We know that there will be those who decide to drink.”

“We just want them to be safe,” said SADD Advisor Shawnie Woeller. “You're not always going to hit them all. I've been doing this for so long that it use to bother me, but I have to take the stand that if we can affect one kid’s life, it does make a difference.”

“It resonates with me every time I watch this,” Doran said. “I don't ever want to have to deal with it, but the possibility is that I may have to. I want to educate myself as much as possible. 

I have no problem telling someone to stop. I see these people every day, I don't want them to end up in a hospital because of it (distracted/drunk driving).” 

“I want to be an example,” Woeller said. “I want to remind kids that there is a way to have fun, but you have to know when to stop."

According to Whitcomb, the kids can make the connection between the selfishness of taking their phone out to text while driving. Any way getting the word out works, different presentations affect different kids.

“I don't think we give kids enough credit,” Whitcomb said. “We just need to give them the information and trust the will make good choices.”

“Other families matter, too,” said Warsaw High School Junior Ashley Scott. “I wouldn’t get in a vehicle with anyone drinking, I would take their keys away.”

“I think it’s cool that they gave the stories and then let the kids use the simulators,” said Warsaw ELA teacher Jen Smith. “They way they set this up was perfect. Even though our prom is over with, the summer is starting and you have grad parties. It’s a good way to end the year as a reminder. 

“This should also be shown to adults. It would be a benefit. I don't think you can get enough of stuff like this,” Smith said. “I wonder if people even really think about it until it affects their community or family.”

According to SRO officer at Warsaw Central School Tim McGinnis, it’s a good barometer of what can happen if a driver decides to text or drink and drive. McGinnis agrees that it absolutely makes the kids see a reality of what can happen. While he said that it sometimes may take time for the information to really hit them and sink in, he’s hoping it is a deterrent to poor choices, which can have long-term effects on everyone.

“It helped me realize that it can impact more than just a driver,” said Warsaw junior Nate McGuire. “I felt sorry for them at first. It shows the impact of one very small moment and how it can impact the rest of their lives.”

“My favorite feedback I get is when the kids come back and tell me they had a conversation about this in another class,” Martin said. “That's what we want the kids to do, get talking about it. Those stories represent the people who are affected.”

“It’s not even tempting for me to drink if I’m going to drive,” Quackenbush said.

“I don’t care what people think if I don’t drink,” Meyers said.

Both girls said there is so much more to do with their time.

For more information about the program visit





Law and Order: Batavia woman accused of making purchases at GCC with stolen credit card

By Howard B. Owens

Franchesca Anais Barrome, 20, of Harvester Avenue, Batavia, is charged with criminal possession of stolen property. Barrome allegedly had possession of a credit card and student ID of another person that she used to make purchases at GCC. Barrome was jailed on $2,000 bail. The investigation is pending and additional charges are possible.

Cory M. Dahl, 20, of Pavilion, is charged with criminal mischief, 4th. Dahl was arrested following a report of a domestic disturbance on Dutton Road, Warsaw, on Feb. 13. Dahl is accused of damaging a rear door and a window. Dahl's 19-year-old girlfriend and infant child were reportedly at the residence at the time.

Tate N. Westermeier, 20, of Darien Center, is charged with driving while ability impaired by drugs, unlawful possession of marijuana and driving without headlights. Westermeier was stopped by State Police Feb. 14 by State Police in the Village of Attica. Genesee County Deputy Howard Carlson, a trained drug recognition expert, assisted in the investigation.

Micahel J. Lathan, 27, of Batavia, was arrested by State Police on a Wyoming County Family Court warrant. Lathan allegedly failed to meet obligations set forth in a prior family court appearance. He was jailed on $1,000 bail.

Cameron John Corner, 18, of Vine Street, Batavia, is charged with petit larceny. Corner was arrested along with a 16-year-old West Main Street resident for allegedly shoplifting from Kmart.

Carlos Enrique Reyes, 38, of Lyell Avenue, Rochester, is charged with criminal contempt, 1st. Reyes is accused of violating a stay away order of protection by placing a phone call to the protected person.

A 17-year-old resident of East Main Street, Batavia, and a 16-year-old resident of Otis Street are charged with petit larceny. The two female youths were allegedly observed stealing wooden pallets from Empire Tractor.

Multi Vendor Expo June 2nd 9-5 at Warsaw Moose Lodge

By Diana Wagner

Stop by the Warsaw Moose Lodge on Saturday June 2nd from 9-5 for the First Annual Multi-Vendor Expo!

Some of your favorites like Avon, Tupperware, PartyLite, Scentsy and more will be on hand in the main hall of the Lodge. Come join in the $ellabration!


Event Date and Time

Garden Day Celebration & Plant Sale

By William Stedman

Presented by the Master Gardeners from Cornell Cooperative Extension of Wyoming County. 

Saturday, May 9th, 2009, from 9am to 12pm.  Join us under the big tent at Cornell Cooperative Extension, 401 North Main Street, Warsaw, NY..  There are demonstrations of Gourd Growing & Painting, Gladioli Growing & Arranging, a watercolor artist, Flower Pounding, and Garden Garnishes.

Event Date and Time

Paddock all-time Section 5 wrestling king

By Brian Hillabush

 We don't do a lot on Warsaw here at The Batavian, but I must congratulate one of the most classy athletes I've covered in my years of local sports journalism.

Warsaw's Ian Paddock pinned Spencerport's Roy Daniels in just 50 seconds in the second round of the Teike-Bernabi Tournament, making some serious history.

The three-time state champion tied the state's all-time record for wins. He jumped one ahead of Webster Schroeder's Gregor Gillespie - another stud grappler - for career wins at  No. 239. That is the largest amount of victories anybody has had in Section 5.

"It's a pretty good feeling, and it's a nice record to hold because there were a bunch of good wrestlers before me who held the mark," Paddock told the Democrat & Chronicle

Paddock has gone 25-0 so far this year, was 53-1 last year and has compiled an insanely impressive 239-6 record seventh-grade.

Ian broke the school record of 235 earlier in the year, a mark that was originally set by his brother Paul.

Ian will be wrestling for Division I powerhouse Ohio State next year on a full ride.

He is continuing his run in the Teike-Bernabi Tournament at Spencerport today. Paddock will be honored in a ceremony before the final round today.

Batavia Daily News for Monday: The Stage opens at old cinema in Warsaw

By Philip Anselmo

The former Warsaw Cinema officially re-opened Saturday as The Stage, Warsaw's new center for the performing arts, according to the Daily News. There was sadly no mention in the otherwise great article about upcoming performances or even if there was a performance during the open house Saturday. We're told that the group Western New York Performance Center Inc. bought the place earlier this year

with the aim of creating a space for music, stage productions, educational programming, and independent film.

That sounds great. I'm all for more culture, in whatever form we can get it, and this place sounds like it will be a great addition to the area. Has anyone yet been down? It's a little outside Genesee County, but I may have to go check it out, get some video footage.

We encourage you to pick up a copy of the Daily News at your local newsstand. Or, better yet, subscribe at

Batavia Daily News for Thursday: Old Warsaw Cinema re-opens in two weeks

By Philip Anselmo

Renovations are about finished on the Warsaw Cinema, which has been brought back to life over the past several months, according to the Daily News. Parts of the original have been preserved, including the "orginal, Roman-style murals," writes Matt Surtel.

The theater will mark its rebirth with an open house (November 15) from 1 to 5 p.m. That will be followed by a 7 p.m. reception, along with performances by a yet-to-be-announced Western Swing band, and the Jim Tudini Big Band from Buffalo.

Not really too much in the way of Genesee County news in today's paper: a couple feature stories about happenings in Oakfield and a couple other small blurbs of topical interest.

We encourage you to pick up a copy of the Daily News at your local newsstand. Or, better yet, subscribe at

News roundup: How much would you pay for a lake?

By Philip Anselmo

Noblehurst Farms of Pavilion just bought Le Roy Lake for $500,000, according to the Daily News. Water from the lake will be used to irrigate crops on the 2,200-acre farm. Reporter Scott DeSmit tells us:

Lake Le Roy had been the source for village water until 2004, when Le Roy hooked up with Monroe County Water Authority to provide water to residents. The property, a 70-acre lake, 40 acres of land and a caretaker's house, had been listed for $3.8 million in 2004.

Village trustees even tried to sell the property on eBay! But no one was interested. From $3.8 million, the price dropped several times, until it was set at just under $1 million. But still, no takers. Not until Noblehurst picked it up for a fraction of the initial cost. Village trustees said they plan to use the money to "reduce debt."

In today's sports section, there's an interesting story by Christ Metcalf about a wrestler from Warsaw who is in high demand from college coaches. The profile of the wrestler, Ian Paddock, spans the whole front page and another half page inside.

In other news:

  • Robert Morales, 52, of 113 Bank St., was sentenced to 1 1/2 to 4 years in state prison after pleading guilty to a second-degree assault charge and admitting that he stabbed a man in the arm during an argument earlier this year.
  • Batavia's 25th anniversary of National Night Out drew about 100 people to St. Anthony's Parish Center last night. Genesee Council on Alcoholism and Substance Abuse (GCASA) sponsored the event. GCASA Prevention Educator Kevin Keenan told reporter Scott DeSmit: "Parents need to find out who their child's friends are, where they're going, what they're doing."
  • Tom Rivers packs produce in the latest installment of his farm labor series.

You can pick up your own copy of the Daily News wherever the paper is sold. Or, better yet, subscribe at

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