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The Prattsville Scoop: Thanking veterans now and all year

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    14 Legionnaires, representing three counties and four American Legion Posts, at the Veterans’ Day Program at Gilboa School.
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    14 Legionnaires and 10 spouses, daughters and granddaughters of veterans at the Gilboa School Veterans Day Program on Nov. 9.
November 14, 2018 11:40 am Updated: November 14, 2018 12:00 pm


PRATTSVILLE — Did you thank all the veterans you saw over the past week?

It is not too late. Thank them every day. They appreciate it and you will get a big smile from them in gratitude for your appreciation.

Hometown Hero: Andrew Rikard, son of David Rikard, will be honored on WNYT Channel 13, “We Salute You” segment on Nov. 16. He will be honored on the newscasts at 5, 6, 10 and 11 p.m. Andrew has served numerous overseas assignments and we are thankful for his safe return and for his service to all of us. David is rightly proud of his son and ask David to give him our thanks.

Every year, we are pleased to attend the Veterans Day Program at Gilboa Conesville CS. We thank the students, teachers and all on the different staffs at the school that make this program so enjoyable and appreciated by our veterans and their families. The youngest of the students are so enthusiastic and make the enjoyment of the day last many hours.

Three counties, Greene, Delaware and Schoharie, were represented with 14 legionnaires, in the pictures, Paul Cozzoli, Elliott Oakes, Kip Rikard, Jerry Mattice, Johannes Krauss, Bob Gurley, Val Riedman, Arnold Jaeger, Dutch Loucks, Mike Meli, Todd Cornell and Chris Tompkins and apologies to the two I failed to get names, from four posts in those counties. Auxiliary members were MaryJo Oakes, Marianne Krauss, Ginny Gurley, Christl Riedman, Mrs. Todd Cornell, Diana Jaeger, Ashleigh Jaeger, Connie Lane and Kristin Tompkins and a lady who goes unidentified.

Eight decades were represented in these two group — ’90s teens, including Abby Tompkins not in the pictures, but an auxiliary member who was taking pictures for the school. Lots of service to our country represented here. Their motto is “Still serving.” Thank you to all.

Seems like this column will be filled with thanks on behalf of our local veterans. The American Legion Auxiliary Virgil E. Deyo Unit No. 1327 Veterans’ Day Bake Sale on Nov. 10 was a success, as always, because of your support and generosity.

Handling the baked goods and afghan raffle were Diana Jaeger, Marianne Krauss, Connie Lane, Cathy Martino, Carol Maykut and Ginny Gurley. Lending their help were legionnaires Bob Gurley and Don Speenburgh. The proceeds will help make the Christmas season a little more enjoyable and less stressful for some local veterans. If you know of some veteran or veteran’s family who can use a little Christmas cheer, call 518-299-3219.

The beautiful Red/White/Blue afghan crocheted by Marianne Krauss and raffled off for the benefit of the VA Christmas Celebration at the Stratton VAMC was won by Laurie Gustin. The winning ticket was drawn by Jim Eisel. Now is a good time to send our thanks out to Jim and Geanine Eisel for their continual generosity in lending the use of their establishment to non-profit/charitable organizations. Pickles for you Jim. Thanks to my fellow columnists for featuring our bake sale in their columns and for supporting our cause in many ways.

It was a star-studded (just wanted to be a little over the top) event at the Copper Tree Restaurant at Hunter Mountain on Saturday evening for the Zadock Pratt Museum Dinner to recognize those who help to keep our area history alive and support our Pratt Museum. Our Kevin Piccoli was honored for his expertise in getting funding for the museum and being an all-around supporter of all things Prattsville.

Prattsville Supervisor Kristin Tompkins and prior Prattsville Supervisor Kory O’Hara gave praise to Kevin for his hard work for the ongoing flood recovery projects and so many new ones we can now enjoy. There to bask in his honor was his wife, Jill, son, Michael, and his parents and family friend, Matthew. Kevin received two standing ovations.

Just about all of Prattsville was there to congratulate him. We look forward to the time the Piccoli family members are full-time residents.

Bea Haskin Mattice, from Conesville, was also one of the other honorees and our Andy Dresser was posthumously recognized for his hard work at the Museum and throughout Prattsville. Congratulations to all.

Charlie Wyckoff, Gilboa Conesville alumni Class of ’56, stopped by the Prattsville Diner on Sunday morning to share breakfast with the Gurleys. It took some hinting to let each other know who they were. The meeting was a happenstance, but it turned into a good time to catch up on their lives.

He is the guest of his daughter Pat Terrill, of Ravena, and takes the time to visit those in the area. He had plans to attend services at the Prattsville Community Church, but the services were about to start and Charlie was still talking with Harvey Truesdell and his Lexington ladies at the diner.

Later in the day, he planned to visit Jim and Roberta Hull and Don and Theresa Speenburgh. Pat Terrill is a nurse at the Catskill VA Outpatient Clinic and his son Larry lives in California were he works for the State of California in their Conservation Department. Their mom was the late Arlene Conine Wyckoff.

The many trips to doctors, lab tests and follow up procedures bring you in contact with many from our mountaintop areas/towns.

If you ever want to see a glowing mother-to-be, just look at Cortney Brainerd Oliver. She always did have a great smile and motherhood has only enhanced it. Cortney and husband T.J. are expecting their first child around the end of December and, as with all new parents, they are wondering how they are going to manage parenthood.

Don’t worry, Cortney and T.J., parenthood will all become second-nature to you. Cortney’s mom, Debbie, and dad, Jim Dymond, will become first-time grandparents with the birth of the baby boy. Let us know when the big event happens.

Lacey Cornell, daughter of Don and Kendra Scutt Cornell, is on the medical staff at an Albany vascular group — and a good job she does. Lacey said she always wanted to be in the nursing field and it obviously was a good choice for her as she is very good at her job.

Rich and Valerie Brainerd were at the Catskill VA Clinic. We didn’t hear any screaming, but Rich was there to get his flu shot. Valerie was there for moral support. Valerie and Rich were recently feted by friends and family for their 50th Anniversary. Congratulations.

Noticed on the billboard for Moore’s Mobile Homes that the business was established in 1968. That makes the 50th year of being in business for Deb and Steve Baker. Congratulations and thank you for being part of our community and contributing to it in so many ways.

Hey Kevin Hull out in Stamford, just to let you know what your fellow businessman is doing — Ray Bracaliello was out with wife Claudia for the Pratt Museum dinner. Ray was the emcee for the evening. You might want to encourage him to give Claudia a hand in rehabbing their home. She is so worried about getting things out of the way for the workman.

Claudia, you are right and we cede to your knowledge as to the placement of the dinner napkin to the left of the plate.

Our prayers are with the families of the four recently deceased in the Stamford and Summit areas. Such sad happenings.

Saw Angie DelNero at the bake sale. Angie used to be active at the Jewett Senior Center, in the WAJPL Golden Age Club and assist with helping the veterans, but has had to slow down a bit. At one time, she would take books from Jewett Senior Center for the veterans, but she no longer does so.

There are books there to be taken if anyone wants to come to the Center to take books for the veterans. You are more than welcome do so. The center is open Monday-Friday, except holidays.

The American Legion Virgil E. Deyo Post No. 1327 and American Legion Auxiliary Virgil E. Deyo Unit No. 1327 under the leadership of Bob and Ginny Gurley will be starting the annual VA Christmas Celebration at the Stratton VAMC for the ninth floor (long term) for the 50 veterans residing there.

Ginny will be doing a presentation of this program at the Ecumenical Council of the mountaintop on Dec. 4 at the Ashland United Methodist Church, 11 a.m. This is a group that meets periodically around the mountain top at the various churches with speakers on various topics. You can always learn something at the meetings and it is a chance to meet with friends and enjoy conversation and food.

Good to see Adam and Kelly Brainard at the museum dinner. Adam is still not fully recovered from his mishap some months ago, but he is making progress.

Happy birthday to Laura Breigle on Nov. 18. Also on Nov. 18 to our Hunter neighbor Doris O’Brien, we send happy birthday greetings.

On Nov. 22 it is happy birthday to Jackie Briggs and Anna Tompkins. On Nov. 23, it is happy birthday to Nancy Olsen.

Send your news to or or call 518-299-3219.