By Patricia Breakey
Delhi News Bureau
The year-end meeting of the Delaware County Board of Supervisors concluded with a sometimes-tearful recognition of the three board members who lost in the November election.
Chairman James Eisel bid farewell to Masonville Supervisor Jack Thomas, Davenport Supervisor Todd Rider and Colchester Supervisor Lucille Freyer.
Eisel said Thomas has served on the county board from 1978 to 2005.
"Jack has been here over a quarter of a century," Eisel said. "It’s a long time. It’s a lifetime. He will go down in the Supervisor Hall of Fame for the longest continuing service."
[an error occurred while processing this directive]Thomas said that he had not always been in line with other people’s thinking but said, "I will miss being here. I love combat. We’ve had some very good struggles and we have won some of them. It’s been a good time. I have always thought of the people and I will continue to love people."
Delaware County Department of Social Services Commissioner Bill Moon said, "Jack came in as a tiger and as you see, he is going out as a tiger. He’s a people person and he will always ask questions. Why is his favorite three-letter word."
Thomas’ wife and two sons were at the meeting and Thomas noted that it was his wife who paid the biggest price for his many years of community service.Eisel said that although Freyer had only served two years on the board she worked hard and served her town and the county well.
Eisel kidded Freyer about one of her favorite phrases "I’m going to say only this …" and noted that the flooding Colchester suffered during her term in office made things difficult for her.
Freyer read a statement she had prepared, but started laughing when her hands shook and she began to choke up.
"Every moment is an opportunity to make a difference," Freyer said.
Eisel said Rider has served for eight years.
"The board will miss Todd’s homespun humor and jokes," Eisel said. "He is a dedicated public servant."
Rider said Freyer was a hard act to follow and added, "I want to thank all of you. You’ve done a great job and keep up the good work."
Delaware County Historian Patrick Grimes attended the county board meeting to encourage the supervisors to make every effort to retain historic records and photographs.
Grimes said he recently received a phone call from a woman in Norwich who told him that she had come across a large group of old photographs that she thought were from Delaware County.
He said two of the photos were tintypes dating back to the mid-1800s. He said the people in the photos were living in Delaware County before the county existed as a political entity.
Grimes said he went to Norwich and discovered that the photos were taken in Masonville. While he was in the area, he stopped by to see the Chenango County Historian and she told him that she had a large group of negatives that featured places and people in Delaware County.
He said the second treasure trove included photos of almost every town and village in Delaware County, with the largest number originating in Arkville. The negatives will be used to produce digitized photos that will be put on CDs and made available to the towns.
Grimes said arrangements are being made to store and preserve the items in the county office building.