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AMVETS post eyed for Rotterdam

Local veterans seek to establish first post in county

County Legislator Angelo Santabarbara, far left, talks to members during the Rotterdam AMVETS meeting, from left, “E J” Knapik, of Glenville, Carl Petrone, of Duanesburg, and Michael McGrath, of Rotterdam, on Thursday, Dec. 29. The group decided to form a brand new post after debating whether to move Post 21 to Rotterdam.

County Legislator Angelo Santabarbara, far left, talks to members during the Rotterdam AMVETS meeting, from left, “E J” Knapik, of Glenville, Carl Petrone, of Duanesburg, and Michael McGrath, of Rotterdam, on Thursday, Dec. 29. The group decided to form a brand new post after debating whether to move Post 21 to Rotterdam. Photo by John Purcell.

— He commended Santabarbara for sticking to the goal of creating the new post.

“It is in my blood, but here is a young guy with a family and he is still willing to come out,” Knapik said. “There would be a lot of functions that the area people will support, and by the same token the post will also support other activities in the area.”

Santabarbara said being active in the community through volunteer efforts is important to him in establishing an AMVETS post. He added only a strong membership would allow for the group to remain active.

“I want us to have a strong membership, so that is why we have been taking our time,” he said. “A lot of these people have been coming over and over again, but we have some new people, too. Hopefully over time we will have a strong membership and a strong core and we can really do a lot with the group. I don’t want it to be something that is formed and then people don’t show up or we are not doing anything.”

Sitting at the table

The small veterans group’s meeting, consisting of eight members, started off continuing the discussion of the previous meeting. Knapik brought forward a motion to move the location of AMVETS Post 21 in Amsterdam to Rotterdam.

“Everything would be the same, except reading Rotterdam instead of Amsterdam,” Knapik said.

photo

The group of people spearheading a proposal for a Rotterdam AMVETS post pose for a group photo after a Thursday, Dec. 29, meeting.

At first it appeared the group was set on the move, which would have the post retaining all of Amsterdam’s members, but eventually the majority of opinion swayed.

Michael McGrath, of Rotterdam, first voiced opposition to absorption plan.

“I was under the impression … we were going to work it from the ground up, do it brand new, that’s what I’m on board (for),” McGrath said.

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Comments

ElizabethM 2 years, 8 months ago

I feel bad that these older gentlemen are being used as a political pawn by this politician. This politician is the poster boy of nonsense stories run in the Spotlight. Every issue shows him dressed all up and shaking hands, smiling with the pearly whites and schmoozing the voters. But what does this politician actually do other than play dress up and pretend he is "for" this or "for" that so that the Spotlight can run a story about his supposed doings. Does this politician own the paper or something??

As usual this politician is getting nothing done except getting free publicity about himself. My Father (also a veteran) taught me to spot a fake, and as an adult woman with teenaged girls, I am giving my daughters the same advice. Anyone this smooth is bad news.

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PeterG 2 years, 8 months ago

I cannot understand how you can really criticize SPC Santabarbara for this. The man served his nation proudly and now is working with others who did so to form a group of retired members of our armed forces to join together to continue the fraternal relationship they forged doing something most of us would never dare to do.

What's more, after serving his nation proudly, in uniform, he has decided to further benefit his community by holding elected office. What have you done lately to benefit your fellow man?

Far too often our elected officials don't do anything, they sit and collect a pay check and are ambivalent towards their purpose as elected officials. They are often criticized for this, and rightly so. Mr. Santabarbara is bucking that mold and should commended.

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