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After searching Hamlin Beach, police seek public’s help finding missing woman

By Tom Rivers, Editor Posted 11 March 2019 at 10:10 pm


HAMLIN – Law enforcement is asking for the public’s help in finding a missing, vulnerable woman.

Law enforcement and firefighters have been trying to locate Margaret DeGraff, 47, of the Town of Sweden since Sunday night.

DeGraff was last seen on Wednesday at her place of employment, Villa of Hope at 3300 Dewey Ave., Rochester.

Her vehicle was located Sunday in the Hamlin Beach State Park area, the Monroe County Sheriff’s Office is reporting.

The Sheriff’s Office teamed with State Police and other first responders in a search of the park and the surrounding area. Many firefighters from eastern Orleans County were part of the effort today.

The search will resume on Tuesday morning.

If anyone has seen or heard from DeGraff or has information about her whereabouts, please call 911.

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Albion, Lyndonville, Medina cancel after-school activities

By Tom Rivers, Editor Posted 6 February 2019 at 1:46 pm

(UPDATED at 2:17 p.m.)

LYNDONVILLE – All after-school activities are cancelled at Albion, Lyndonville and Medina. All Lyndonville students will be released at 2:35. There will be no late bus run.

All evening events are also cancelled at Albion Central School. There won’t be a 4:15 p.m. bus.

The icy road conditions have resulted in several accidents around the county today. A winter weather advisory remains in effect until 1 a.m. tonight.

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Albion cancels afternoon PreK due to weather

By Tom Rivers, Editor Posted 6 February 2019 at 11:22 am

ALBION – The Albion school district has cancelled the afternoon prekindergarten program due to the icy road conditions.

The morning PreK students will stay at school until the 3:30 p.m. dismissal. Those students will also be fed lunch at school.

Parents also can pick up the PreK students before 3:30 if they call the school office.

The afternoon BOCES also is cancelled today. Parents can call the school office if they want to dismiss their child before the end of the school day.

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Medina DPW urges no unnecessary travel for next few hours

By Tom Rivers, Editor Posted 6 February 2019 at 9:43 am

The freezing rain and ice has made the roads slippery for motorists. Joe Perry, Medina DPW superintendent, is urging motorists not to drive if they have that option the next few hours.

“We have 4 trucks out salting and are having a hard time keeping up with the ice,” Medina Mayor Mike Sidari posted on Facebook. “We are expected to receive up to a half inch of ice. Watch for low hanging tree limbs and wires.”

If there is a wire hanging or down on the ground, Sidari said people shouldn’t try to move it. They should call 911.

Orleans County is under a winter weather advisory until 1 a.m. tonight due to the freezing rain.

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Albion police looking for missing girl, 12, and boy, 14

Posted 13 December 2018 at 11:53 am

Press Release, Albion Police Department

ALBION – The Albion Police Department is currently investigating a missing person case involving Jennifer Lauro-Ramierez, 12, and Raul S. Cruz, 14.

Both were last scene at approximately 6 p.m. on Wednesday, Dec. 12, in the 100 block of South Main Street in the Village of Albion. It is believed the Cruz and Lauro-Ramierez are together.

Jennifer Lauro-Ramierez

Jennifer Lauro-Ramierez is described as follows:

Age: 12

Hispanic Female, Black Hair, Brown Eyes, 5’01”  123 lbs.

Clothing: Black or Gray Hoodie.

Raul S. Cruz

Raul S. Cruz is described as follows:

Age: 14

Hispanic Male, Black Hair, Brown Eyes, 5’06” Slender Build

Clothing: Unknown

Vehicle: None

If anyone has information as to Jennifer Lauro-Ramierez or Raul S. Cruz location, please contact your local 911 center or the Albion Police at 585-589-5627.

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Public’s help requested in finding missing Medina man

By Tom Rivers, Editor Posted 10 December 2018 at 10:39 am

Courtesy of Medina Police Department

MEDINA — A Medina man’s family hasn’t seen him for about a month and a half, and has filed a missing person’s report.

Heriberto “Roberto” Torres, 57, was living on West Avenue. He attended school at Medina, was in the Army for a decade and was living in the community before moving to Buffalo. About three or four years ago, he moved back to Medina, said his sister, Iris Torres.

The family is concerned because he hasn’t returned to his residence, and left his clothes and medication behind. His phone and wallet have not been found, his sister said.

She lives in Puerto Rico. Anyone with information about her brother can contact her at (787) 391-3801 or

The Medina Police Department posted a missing person’s report for Torres on Sunday. Anyone with information about Torres can contact the Police Department at (585) 798-5602.

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Amber Alert cancelled for Byron girl, 14

Staff Reports Posted 29 November 2018 at 7:18 pm

Kamerie Elliot

BYRON – An Amber Alert has been cancelled for a 14-year-old Byron girl who was allegedly abducted this morning from a location on West Bergen Road.

Kamerie Elliot was located and is safe, State Police said.

She was allegedly taken by a 22-year-old Batavia man driving a blue Dodge Journey.

She was considered in “imminent danger or serious harm and/or death.”

Guillermo Torres-Acevedo

The suspect is Guillermo Torres-Acevedo, who has black hair and brown eyes. The license plates of the Dodge Journey are New York HHP5458.

“They were located together by Pennsylvania State Police in Mansfield, Pa,” the Genesee County Sheriff’s Office said in a statement. “Kamerie was unharmed and will be transported back to Genesee County. Guillermo Torres-Acevedo was taken into custody on warrants from New York State and will be held in Pennsylvania pending extradition proceedings.”

Kamerie and Torres-Acevedo knew each other and Torres-Acevedo had been arrested by State Police on Monday in connection with that an incident involving the girl, the Sheriff’s Office said

Law enforcement say Kamerie got into his Dodge willingly at about 8 a.m. The vehicle was seen traveling northbound on West Bergen Road.

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Parade of Lights will lead off with bronze statue of soldier

By Ginny Kropf, correspondent Posted 18 November 2018 at 2:33 pm

The statue will be installed in spring by Armory in Medina

This rendering shows the bronze statue mounted by the former Armory, which is now a YMCA on Pearl Street in Medina.

MEDINA – The Parade of Lights this Saturday will lead off with a very special float.

Those who attend the spectacular parade will get the first glimpse of a statue which will be erected atop the monument in front of Medina Armory (YMCA).

The existing monument was an idea of Medina native Bill Menz and pays tribute to the 550 men from Orleans County and the surrounding area who were members of Company F and trained there.

The final piece of the monument, the life-size bronze statue of an infantryman, is to be delivered to Medina Monday afternoon by a family friend, John Brown of Batavia, accompanied by Menz’ daughter Lynne Menz, Cathy Fox (whose father was a member of Company F) and Ginny Kropf, who has covered the story for the media from day one.

Sadly, Menz, at the age of 86, died in July, four months short of seeing completion of his dream.

A veteran himself, Menz first pitched his idea in 2006 to a local World War II veterans’ reunion.

He thought there should be a monument in front of the Medina Armory which would pay tribute, not only to the men who trained there for four world conflicts from 1898 to 1945, but to veterans from all wars. This also included Company C, which trained there from 1947 through 1977, when the National Guard stopped using the building.

With the support of the Sandstone Society, of which Bill was a member, and two years of fundraising, in 2008 the five-sided monument was dedicated, with several World War II veterans and their families in attendance.

Bill’s vision didn’t end there, however, and he began planning for the next phase of his monument – the bronze statue.

More fundraising ensued to raise an additional $65,000 and on Jan. 16, 2017, sculptor Brian Porter of Pendleton was commissioned to do the statue.

In the following months, Bill, Lynne, Fox and Kropf made visits to Porter’s home to view his progress.

Menz, in a wheelchair, also got to visit the foundry at UB were the firing was done, just 11 days before he died.

The Company F soldier will be the first where Porter incorporated 3-D imaging to create molds for the cast bronze statue. In the new process, a miniature clay model was scanned with the 3-D technology and data sent to a CNC machine, which cut out thin plywood slices which were then glued together. This wood structure became a subframe on which clay was applied.

Porter is also an assistant professor of art at Erie Community College, and has created such masterpieces as the United States Seabees Memorial in North Tonawanda. He has also worked with the University of Buffalo to create two statues of graduates to be installed at their North Campus.

The statue’s unveiling at the Parade of Lights will be in front of a crowd anticipated to be 10,000 people.

It is interesting to note the parade route is the exact opposite of that taken by those troops when they marched from the armory to the train station all those years ago.

The statue will be placed in storage after the parade, to await installation in the spring. The Medina Department of Public Works will help erect the 1,500-pound statue on the float and return it to storage.

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