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Ballston year in review, part I

January

Members of the Ballston Lake Fire Department came up with a hot new way to boost recruiting efforts by engaging their own kids as the next generation of volunteers. The Young Adult Volunteers Apprenticeship Program brought teens, ages 16 to 18, into the fold with some restrictions, such as being barred from entering burning buildings or driving fire trucks. Five BH-BL High School students joined their parents in the ranks, including Brian Little with his father, David; Eli Willig and his father, Paul; Constance Waugh and her mother, Susanna Newton; David Wood and his dad, J.D.; and Tyler Farrar with his father, Doug. The young adult volunteers weren't exempt from tough hours, as they attended weekly training drills Monday nights and most Saturday mornings.

The town of Ballston remembered local leader William E. Sewell who died in December 2006 at 87. Sewell was called a role model and stabilizing force by current Burnt Hills-Ballston Lake Superintendent Jim Schultz. Sewell served as principal of Burnt Hills-Ballston Lake High School from 1978 to 1987. He was also the town supervisor for several years.

February

Former Charlton town council member Damasita Miner, 78, died from injuries sustained in a car accident at the intersection of Route 67 and Mann Road. Miner's husband, Francis, 81, allegedly failed to yield the right of way while making a left turn, entering the direct path of an oncoming Ford truck carrying a V-shaped snowplow in the elevated position. Damasita Miner served on the town council from 1973 to 1977, the first woman elected to the Charlton town board. She served again from 1986 to 1993, and continued to be active as a lifelong Republican, town planning board member and member of the Charlton Historical Society. Town Supervisor Alan Grattidge credited Miner with helping guide town policy during a time of wrestling with changing ordinances and zoning laws to keep the town rural and agricultural.

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