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Kendall’s Class of 2018 celebrates commencement

Staff Reports Posted 23 June 2018 at 2:27 pm

Photos courtesy of David Klafehn

KENDALL – Kendall celebrated graduation on Friday evening with 49 students completing their high school careers. The program was held at the David J. Doyle Kendall Jr./Sr. High School Auditorium.

Three of the graduates pose for a photo, including from left Taylor Requa, Megan Hardenbrook and Lyndsay Wright.

These students include Michela Hanlon, Lyndsay Wright, Miguel Aguirre, Kierstyn Christensen and Adriana Passarell.

Kierstyn Christensen delivers the valedictory address in front of her mother, Julie Christensen, who is the school district superintendent.

Allen Tonas gives the salutatory address.

Karl Driesel, a Kendall graduate and owner of a woodworking business in town, delivers the keynote address.

Class of 2018 Officers Allen Tonas, Matthew Murray, Caleb Henion, Archer Knapp and Class Advisors Katherine Driesel and Mark Driesel present exchange student Tihamer Keresztes with a gift from his classmates.

The male graduates sat on the left side of the stage.

The women were on the right side.

The class officers lead their classmates in moving the tassels on their graduation caps.

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Boaters Against Cancer has expanded event with fireworks in Kendall

Photo courtesy of Dave Bentley: Dave Bentley, right, is pictured with two of his close friends who died of cancer, Scott Harris at left, and Phil Lance. Bentley is part of the Boaters Against Cancer group that has organized a three-day fundraising event from June 29 to July 1 at the Bald Eagle Marina in Kendall.

By Tom Rivers, Editor Posted 19 June 2018 at 10:17 am

3-day party includes flotilla, debut of restaurant at marina

KENDALL – There will be fireworks, a large flotilla, live music, a wine- and beer-tasting and the soft opening of a new restaurant.

Those activities – and more – are part of the third annual Boaters Against Cancer fundraising event at Bald Eagle Marina In Kendall from June 29 to July 1.

The marina is the host of the biggest fundraiser for Boaters Against Cancer. The effort started in memory of two long-time boaters at the marina – Scott Harris and Phil Lance – who died about a month apart from cancer.

Dave Bentley was close friends with both of the boaters. Bentley is on the organizing committee for the upcoming three-day event.

“They were two of my best friends,” said Bentley, owner of Bentley Brothers, a Kubota dealership in Albion and Brockport. “We boated together. We travelled together.”

The first two Boaters Against Cancer events raised $30,000 with up to $2,000 available for a boater battling cancer. Those boaters don’t have to be connected to the Bald Eagle Marina.

The lineup of activities for the third annual Boaters Against Cancer events has been expanded. Non-boaters are welcome for many of the activities, including barbecue ribs on Friday, June 29, at the new Lures restaurant at the marina, and a chicken barbecue at Lures on Saturday, June 30. The restaurant won’t officially open until mid-July, said Susan Oschmann, the general manger. It has a special permit for a soft opening to serve food during the Boaters Against Cancer event.

Other highlights of the schedule include:

June 29

• 4 to 7 p.m. – wine- and beer-tasting on the porch

• 4:30 to 6:30 – music with Travis Fitch

• 7 to 10 p.m. – karaoke with Greg and Deb

• 10 p.m. – lantern send off

June 30

• 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. – arts and crafts vendors

• 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. – massages

• 5 p.m. – flotilla

• 7 to 10 p.m. – music with the Kinne Family Band

• 10 p.m. – fireworks

July 1

• 8 a.m. to 11 a.m. – breakfast with Chef Don

• 11 a.m. – duck race

• 11 a.m. – raffle and silent auction ends with the winners announced

Oschmann said she is hopeful other marinas will start Boaters Against Cancer chapters and the events can be coordinated, especially with the flotillas happening at the same time.

“It would be awesome if we could do more,” she said. “We try to do our part and hope others will follow. We want to see a giant flotilla.”

Some of the boaters will take people out in their boats for the flotilla, with a suggested donation that will go towards Boaters Against Cancer.

Oschmann said many boating families have been impacted by cancer. Her father Jim has fought the disease. Jim Oschmann ran the marina for about 20 years. He was also the first to have fireworks at Bald Eagle Marina in the early 1990s. The fireworks on June 30 will be set off from one of the jetties at the marina.

“Boaters are a very close-knit family,” Susan Oschmann said. “When they are affected, they step up and help out.”

For more information on Boaters Against Cancer, click here.

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Kendall elementary students form their own large flag

Staff Reports Posted 14 June 2018 at 3:25 pm

Photos courtesy of Jeremy Rath

KENDALL – Elementary school students at Kendall celebrated Flag Day today with students wearing red, white and blue. The students gather for a group picture every Flag Day by the flag pole. This year the school decided to pose in the shape of a flag. In the past the students have assembled in the shape of the peace sign and the letters for USA.

Music teacher Jeremy Rath sent in these photos.

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Kendall community honors the sacrifice of soldiers

By Tom Rivers, Editor Posted 30 May 2018 at 10:28 pm

Town holds its Memorial Day observance on May 30, which was the official date of the holiday from 1868 to 1970

Photos by Tom Rivers: Boy Scouts and veterans hold a large American flag during a Memorial Day observance at Greenwood Cemetery this evening. The flag would then be folded 13 times, with the meaning of each fold read by Marietta Schuth. Brian Shaw, a Boy Scout in Troop 94, is in back center, holding the flag.

John Patt of Troop 94 carries the American flag on Route 18. The processional started at Kendall Elementary School and ended at Greenwood Cemetery.

Sarah Kelly plays the flute in the combined Holley and Kendall marching band.

Town Supervisor Tony Cammarata said Memorial Day should be a time to reflect on the sacrifice of soldiers. “If it wasn’t for these brave individuals, our lives and our way of life would definitely have been different,” he said.

Kendall holds its Memorial Day observance on May 30, which was the official day for the holiday until it was changed to be the last Monday in May. Kendall has decided to continue to hold its Memorial Day ceremony on May 30. Memorial Day used to be known as Decoration Day. The holiday was celebrated on May 30 from 1868 to 1970.

A Civil War cannon is at Greenwood Cemetery on Route 18, across from the new Dollar General store. Kendall rotates the Memorial Day service at three cemeteries.

Daniel Lauritzson, director of the chorus at Kendall, leads the group which sang, “Anthem.”

Kendall High School students Michela Hanlon and Allen Tonas read names from the “Roll of Honored Dead,” local veterans who are buried in Kendall cemeteries.

Members of the Kendall Fire Department salute the flag while the Kendall school band played the national anthem, “The Star-Spangled Banner.”

This is the same scene with the salute during the national anthem except the focus is on the flute player.

David Warren, a member of the Kendall Community Band, plays “Taps” with his trumpet near the end of the Memorial Day service at Greenwood Cemetery. The Community Band also played, “God Bless America” and “Armed Forces Salute.”

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Kendall approves $14.97 million capital project

By Tom Rivers, Editor Posted 15 May 2018 at 9:26 pm

KENDALL – District residents approved the school budget and also a $14.97 million capital project.

The $17,367,477 budget passed, 155 to 34. The budget reduces spending and doesn’t increase taxes. It also includes $100,000 for a school resource officer. Kendall will keep its security staff and wants to have a deputy from the Orleans County Sheriff’s Office devoted to the school.

The capital project was backed 145 to 43. Kendall school leaders say they already have the local share for the work in a capital reserve fund so there wouldn’t be a local tax increase.

The project follows a series of other improvements at the district campus in recent years. The scope of the new capital project includes:

• Proposed improvements to the Elementary School include improving ventilation on the second floor of the quad and auditorium; renovation of the multi-purpose room for technology, agriculture and consumer science programs; replacement of the original gym bleachers and the gym floor, renovation of locker rooms, and a re-design of the cafeteria and serving line.

• Improvements proposed for the Jr./Sr. High School include renovation of the art, technology and music rooms which would address accessibility, storage and ventilation; replacement of gym floors and bleachers; renovation of the girls’ locker room; renovation of music practice rooms; renovation of the lavatory in the arts hall; update of the public access system; ventilation in the office and gym; improving light and sound and providing fly space for set productions in the auditorium; addition of a vestibule at the entrance to the art and music wing.

• Site improvements could include lighting and traffic flow at the Elementary School front loop; improvement of traffic flow at the Jr./Sr. High School bus loop; drainage in the athletic fields, addition of bathrooms and storage by the track and sidewalks from the High School cafe to the tennis courts.

• The bus garage is in need of roof repairs, an update to the fuel system and outside lighting as well as improvements to the water line. The old bus garage behind the Elementary School is in need of replacement windows and doors, Julie Christensen, district superintendent, said at a January community meeting about the project.

Construction could begin in 2019 and be completed by 2020.

• Voters also gave approval, 159 to 31, to spend up to $250,000 from the School Bus Reserve Fund for transportation vehicles.

• Jason ReQua was the lone candidate running for a five-year term on the Board of Education. He received 179 votes.

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Kendall, Medina again listed among top high schools by U.S. News

Photo by Tom Rivers: Kendall Junior/Senior High School has earned a Silver Award as a high-performing high school in the latest ranking by U.S. News and World Report.

By Tom Rivers, Editor Posted 10 May 2018 at 11:18 am

U.S. News and World Report on Wednesday published its list of top high schools in the state and nation and Kendall and Medina again are on the list as Silver Medal winners.

The news publication weighs data on student achievement from 22,000 high schools in the country. Kendall has been at the top of the list in Orleans County in recent years, but the latest report shows Medina edging ahead of Kendall.

Medina ranked as the 197th top high school in New York and 2,297th in the country. Kendall was ranked 205th in New York and 2,455th nationally, which puts them near the top 10 percent.

The other high schools in Orleans weren’t on the list of top performers.

The U.S. News’ Best High Schools List is compiled by first analyzing how well students performed on qualifying high school state assessments such as Regents Exams in Algebra 1 and ELA.

The high schools identified as over performing were then ranked nationally in terms of college readiness, using participation and success in the Advanced Placement program. U.S. News then awarded more than 6,040 gold, silver, and bronze medals to the top-performing schools.

Some highlights from each high school in Orleans include:

• Albion (unranked)

597 students and 40 teachers

75 proficient in mathematics, 92 percent proficient in reading

88 percent graduation rate

College Readiness Index – 20.1

AP tested, 29 percent

AP passed 61 percent

48 percent economically disadvantaged (eligible for free or reduced-price lunch)

• Holley (unranked)

519 students and 48 teachers

68 percent mathematics proficiency, 81 percent reading

53 percent economically disadvantaged

• Kendall (Silver Award)

317 students and 29 teachers

81 percent mathematics proficiency, 91 percent reading proficiency

College Readiness Index – 24.3

37 percent AP tested, 54 percent pass AP

47 percent economically disadvantaged

• Lyndonville (unranked)

309 students and 29 teachers

62 percent mathematics proficiency, 91 percent reading proficiency

College Readiness Index – 34.4

51 percent AP tested and 57 percent passing

44 percent economically disadvantaged

• Medina (Silver Award)

631 students and 52 teachers

91 percent proficiency for both math and reading

College Readiness Index – 26.2.

41 percent tested for AP and 51 percent passing

48 percent are economically disadvantaged

For more information, visit

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Kendall deaths: ‘It’s an absolute tragedy that didn’t have to happen’

Photos by Tom Rivers: Orleans County law enforcement officials met with the media at 11 a.m. today to discuss the arrest of David A. Wiley Jr., who has been charged with reckless endangerment and criminally negligent homicide after the death of a mother and her son from carbon monoxide poisoning last month. From left include Jeff Gifaldi, investigator with the Sheriff’s Office; Michael Mele, chief deputy; District Attorney Joe Cardone; and Undersheriff Chris Bourke.

By Tom Rivers, Editor Posted 4 May 2018 at 12:54 pm

KENDALL – A Kendall resident used such poor judgement in operating a generator in a closed garage, leading to the death of two of his neighbors, that he is facing felony charges of reckless endangerment and criminally negligent homicide, District Attorney Joe Cardone said in a news conference today.

“His reckless conduct rose to such a gross level,” Cardone said about David A. Wiley Jr., 39, of 2245 Center Rd.

Undersheriff Chris Bourke takes questions from the media this morning at the Orleans County Public Safety Building.

Wiley was living in apartment A of the duplex when he set up the generator in the garage on April 16. It was directly below the living space of his neighbors in apartment B. Joan C. Gilman, 38, and her son Richard J. Gilman, 14, were found deceased in an upstairs bedroom on April 18.

An autopsy showed extremely high levels of carbon monoxide in their system and the cause of death was found to be “inhalation of products of combustion,” Undersheriff Chris Bourke said.

The generator ran for 17 hours and the fumes from it were 4-5 times the amount that could kill a person, Bourke said.

The power had been turned off at the site after the bill wasn’t paid. Wiley, as caretaker of the property, was responsible for paying the bill to National Grid, Bourke said.

When the electricity was turned off, Wiley set up a generator to power his side of the duplex, but not the apartment for the Gilmans, the undersheriff said.

“It’s an absolute tragedy that didn’t have to happen,” Bourke said.

Agencies could have helped negotiate keeping the power on, or the generator could have been set up outside the house, Bourke said.

David A. Wiley Jr.

The Kendall code enforcement officer has red-tagged the building, removing the certificate of occupancy due to code violations. Bourke said the town wasn’t aware the house had been subdivided into two apartments.

Wiley is very remorseful about what happened and didn’t intend to hurt anyone, said Jeff Gifaldi, investigator for the Sheriff’s Office.

Cardone said generators have warning labels to not operate inside.

“We grow up educated that you don’t run combustible engines in a living area,” Cardone said. The generators can cause a fire and the carbon monoxide is also a “silent killer,” Cardone said.

“It’s such an obvious thing and such an obvious use of poor judgement,” he said.

The maximum sentence for felony reckless endangerment is 2 1/3 to 7 years in prison, while the maximum for felony criminally negligent homicide is 1 1/3 to 4 years in prison.

Wiley was arraigned in Albion Town Court on Thursday. He was remanded to the county jail on $2,500 cash bail or $5,000 bond. He is scheduled to return to the Town of Kendall Court on May 7 at 5:30 p.m.

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Kendall man charged with criminally negligent homicide after death of mother and son from carbon monoxide poisoning

Posted 3 May 2018 at 9:31 pm

Press Release, Orleans County Undersheriff Chris Bourke

David A. Wiley Jr.

KENDALL – The Orleans County Sheriff’s Office has arrested a Kendall man in connection with the deaths of Joan C. Gilman, 38, and her son Richard J. Gilman, 14, of 2245 Center Rd., apartment B.

Undersheriff Christopher Bourke reports that Investigator Jeff Gifaldi arrested and charged David A. Wiley Jr., 39, of 2245 Center Rd, apartment A with two counts of Criminally Negligent Homicide (class E felony) and two counts of Reckless Endangerment 1st Degree (class D felony).

The Sheriff’s Office investigation revealed that Wiley was the “care taker” for the owner of the duplex located at 2245 Center Road and resided in apartment “A”. The electrical power bills for each apartment were allegedly in Wiley’s name. National Grid shut off the power on or about April 16. Wiley allegedly ran the generator in a closed garage directly beneath the bedroom of the victims for over 17 hours between April 16 and April 18.

Provided photo: Richard “RJ” Gilman Jr. and his mother Joan are shown together in this photo.

The Monroe County Medical Examiners found, as a result of the autopsies, that both Mrs. Gilman and her son had extremely high levels of carbon monoxide in their system and the cause of death was found to be “inhalation of products of combustion.”

As a result of the Sheriff’s Office investigation, it was found that Wiley allegedly engaged in conduct which created a grave risk of death to another person and he failed to perceive the substantial and unjustifiable risk that would result. This action was a gross deviation from what would be that of an ordinary prudent person in the same circumstance as to be incompatible with proper regard for human life, Bourke said.

Wiley was arraigned in the Town of Albion Court and remanded to the custody of the Sheriff in the county jail on $2,500 bail. Wiley is scheduled to return to the Town of Kendall Court on May 7 at 5:30 p.m.

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Simulator shows students impact of driving while texting, impaired

By Tom Rivers, Editor Posted 30 April 2018 at 7:32 pm

Photos courtesy of David Klafehn

KENDALL – Jeremy Browe drives the new STOP DWI Driving Simulator on Friday at Kendall during the Senior Bash.

Sheriff Randy Bower, front left, Chief Deputy Michael Mele and other Kendall students and parents get a close look at the simulator.

The Orleans County Sheriff’s Office used a grant from the New York State STOP DWI Committee to purchase a driving simulator where students and other users can see the effects of driving while texting, drowsy or if they are impaired or intoxicated.

The simulator changes the landscapes to resemble driving in a city or in a rural area.

Dylan Spellan gives the simulator a try.

“It was a huge hit and a great learning experience for the kids to experience what it’s like to text and drive, drive when drowsy and what it would be like if you drink and drive,” Sheriff Bower said. “They learned a lot from it.”

The sheriff would like to take the simulator to other school districts, community events including the Orleans County 4-H Fair and also make it available for drivers’ education classes.

High School Principal Carol D’Agostino also got behind the wheel of the simulator. Deputy Torry Tooley offers some tips.

Kendall seniors gathered for a photo and urged each other not to drink and drive, especially in the upcoming prom and graduation party season.

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Kendall Elementary will host child car seat check during PTSA Fun Night

Posted 24 April 2018 at 9:10 am

Press Release, Orleans County Sheriff’s Office

KENDALL – Attention all parents and caregivers in Orleans County: Sheriff Randall Bower announced Kendall Elementary School will host one of our many Child Car Seat Check Point Events during PTSA Fun Night on Friday.

The Sheriff’s Office will be at the Elementary School on Friday from 5:30 to 8:30 p.m.

According to data, vehicle crashes are the leading cause of death for children ranging from 1 to 13 years of age. Preventative measures, such as proper installation of car seats, boosters and seat belts can lower many deaths and injuries. Informing and instructing parents and caregivers on child safety and proper installation of car seats is critical to saving young lives.

Our Certified Child Passenger Safety Technicians will share information and inspect your car/booster seats to assure that your child is in the correct seat for their size and age. If you have any questions, please contact Sgt. Kevin Colonna at 585-589-5527 or

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