Past Issues of the Putnam Town Crier



Ovila John Rondeau
PUTNAM — Ovila Rondeau, 90, of Arthur St, died Jan. 20, 2022, at home. He was the husband of Lillian (Mooney) Rondeau, whom he married at St. Mary Church on June 4, 1955. Born in 1931 in Putnam, he was the son of the late Ovila and Eva (Forest) Rondeau.
Known to his friends and co-workers as John, he worked for the Connecticut Department of Transportation, working in the Putnam Garage.  He retired from the DOT Dec. 31, 1986.
He leaves his daughter, Maureen (Richard) Collum; four grandsons, Benjamin (Liz) Abram, Erick (Tanya) Abram, Dustin (Leanne) Abram, and Adam (Hollis) Abram; and five great-grandchildren, Connor, Meghan, Cole, Lexi, and Owen. He is predeceased by his siblings, Lorraine LaPalme, Leona DuBois, Lucille DesLavriers, and PFC Martin Rondeau, USMC.
Gilman Funeral Home and Crematory, 104 Church St., Putnam.

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Fri.  Jan. 28
Owl Watch
POMFRET --- The Connecticut Audubon Society at Pomfret will hold an “Owl Watch” at 7 p.m. near the Bafflin Sanctuary. $10 for CAS members; $20 for non-members. Email: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. to register. 860-928-4948.

Sat.  Jan. 29
Clothing Giveaway
PUTNAM --- The IHSP-Nu 2 U Clothing Closet will hold a clothing giveaway from 9 a.m. to noon at the Living Faith United Methodist Church Fellowship Hall off Bradley Street. Free clothing for all ages and seasons. Bring your own bags. All welcome (not accepting clothing donations at this event).


Sat  Feb. 5
‘Potato’ Fund-raiser
PUTNAM --- A baked potato buffet will be held from 5 to 7 p.m. in the downstairs hall of St. Mary’s Church. $5 per person for a baked potato, with seven toppings to choose from, plus dessert and coffee or tea. Eat in or take out. Benefits Boy Scout Troop 21 2022 summer camp fund. 860-928-7241.

Food Drive
POMFRET --- The Pomfret Proprietor’s Food Drive to benefit the TEEG Food Pantry at Pomfret will be held from 9 to 11 a.m. at the Pomfret Senior Center. Nonperishable foods, canned meats, canned vegetables, canned or dried fruit, applesauce, crackers, rice, pasta, canned soups are great.  Friendly representatives from the Vanilla Bean Café will be there to collect donations.  

Sat  Feb. 12
Fire & Ice
PUTNAM --- The Putnam Business Association’s annual Fire & Ice Festival will be held downtown from noon to 9 p.m. . It includes entertainers, art, ice sculpting and a cake contest “Love is Brewing” (each cake must include coffee). Discoverputnam.com

Sun.  Feb. 13
History Program
POMFRET --- The Pomfret Historical Society will present “Antique Photography” with Hunter Neal at 2 p.m. at the Pomfret Community & Senior Center on Rt. 44. Free. More info on the town’s website.

Sat.  Feb. 19
Wee Walk
THOMPSON --- The Wyndham Land Trust’s family-friendly Wee Wander Walk, “Animal Tracking at the Robins Preserve” will be held from 10 to 11:30 a.m. Dress appropriately and bring your camera. www.wyndhamlandtrust.org.

Mon.  Feb. 28
‘Green’ Film
POMFRET --- The Pomfret Green Team will present “The Nature Makers”  at 7 p.m. plus a dialogue following. To sign up go to: https://www.pomfretct.gov/green-team/pages/winter-film-series and click on the Zoom Meeting registration link. Co-sponsors include the Pomfret Library and the Connecticut Audubon Center at Pomfret.

Sun.  March 13
History Program
POMFRET --- The Pomfret Historical Society will present “The Windham Textile Mill” with Bev York at 10 a.m. at the Pomfret Community & Senior Center on Rt. 44. Free.

Fri.  March 25
‘Beauty and the Beast’
THOMPSON --- The Thompson Public Schools will present Disney’s “Beauty and the Beast” at 7 p.m. March 25 and March 26 and at 2 p.m. March 27 in the Thompson Public School Auditorium. $10 for adults; TPS students/seniors, $5; and kids younger than 3, free. 860-923-9581.

Mon.  March 28
‘Green’ Film
POMFRET --- The Pomfret Green Team will present “2040”  at 7 p.m. plus a dialogue following. To sign up go to: https://www.pomfretct.gov/green-team/pages/winter-film-series and click on the Zoom Meeting registration link. Co-sponsors include the Pomfret Library and the Connecticut Audubon Center at Pomfret.

Sat.  April 9
History Program
POMFRET --- The Pomfret Historical Society will present “Connecticut History Explorations” with Walter Woodward at 10 a.m. at the Pomfret Community & Senior Center on Rt. 44. Free. More info on the town’s website.

Sat.  May 7
Wee Walk
POMFRET --- The Wyndham Land Trust’s family-friendly Wee Wander Walk, “Salamander Search at the 3 B’s” will be held from 10 to 11:30 a.m. Dress appropriately and bring your camera. www.wyndhamlandtrust.org

Sat.  May 14
History Program
POMFRET --- The Pomfret Historical Society will present “The Last Green Valley Notables & Notorious” with Bill Reid at 10 a.m. at the Pomfret Community & Senior Center on Rt. 44. Free. More info on the town’s website.

Sat.  June 11
History Program
POMFRET --- The Pomfret Historical Society will present “Connecticut’s 29th Colored Regiment” with Donna Dufresne at the Pomfret Community & Senior Center on Rt. 44. Free. More info on the town’s website.

Sat.  Aug. 6
Wee Walk
POMFRET --- The Wyndham Land Trust’s family-friendly Wee Wander Walk, “Bats at Lyon Preserve” will be held from 7 to 8 p.m. Dress appropriately and bring your camera. www.wyndhamlandtrust.org

Sat.  Aug. 13
History Program
POMFRET --- The Pomfret Historical Society will present “The Historic Mills of Pomfret” with Dick Symonds at the Pomfret Community & Senior Center on Rt. 44. Free. More info on the town’s website.

Sat.  Oct. 1
Wee Walk
WOODSTOCK --- The Wyndham Land Trust’s family-friendly Wee Wander Walk, “Leaves and Mushrooms at Rapoport Preserve” will be held from 10 to 11:30 a.m. Dress appropriately and bring your camera. www.wyndhamlandtrust.org

Sat. Nov. 5, 2022
Dueling Pianos
PUTNAM --- Day Kimball Healthcare will present Dueling Pianos Presented By Foxwoods Resort Casino at 7 p.m. at Connecticut National Golf Club. Benefit: Day Kimball Healthcare At Home. More Info: daykimball.org/pianos

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Desmond
Claude
doesn’t mind
waiting
Whether it’s answering a question, improving his game, finding the right shot, Desmond Claude will not be rushed. And he didn’t rush into the biggest decision of his basketball life (thus far) when he made his commitment last week to play college ball at Xavier University in the fall.
“I would much rather wait and get it right, than rush and get it wrong,” said Claude, Putnam Science Academy’s 6-foot-5 combo guard. “I’m OK with waiting and taking my time to get it right, especially when it’s something that I really want to do.”
Claude chose Xavier, located in Cincinnati, from a couple dozen offers that came from all over the college hoops landscape, from the A-10, Big East, ACC, Big 12, and SEC. Currently ranked No. 20 in the country, the Musketeers are coached by Travis Steele, with whom Claude can be patient.
“I felt comfortable with the coaching staff helping me develop into a point guard,” he said. “It might take me two, three, four years to really pop off and get to the next level, but I believe and trust in them to help me get there.”
That development into the point guard role is something Claude takes seriously and knew was needed to help him get more college offers. He was able to showcase himself at a NEPSAC event in the early summer, then ran more point on the EYBL circuit with his Expressions Elite team. And he has continued to get the chance to play on the ball more at PSA, a team that has plenty of adept ballhandlers.
“It naturally takes times for guys to adjust,” said Mustangs assistant coach Dana Valentine, who has known Claude for four years going back to their days with Expressions. “Des is a thinker, very cerebral. He’s a worker and will always figure it out. There’s no reason to think he won’t keep working on this next phase of his game and figure that out too.”
Claude, who would like to major in business management or digital marketing, grew up in a basketball family. He said his mom and dad put a ball in his hands when he was little and they’d go find a hoop and play. It was around middle school, sixth or seventh grade, that he started to take it seriously.
“Even then, I knew it was going to take time,” he said. “I didn’t really pop off until this summer and coming into this year. My parents told me to keep working, keep believing, and you’ll be fine. That’s what I did.”
Once the all those schools – whether it was Xavier, Louisville, Kansas or any other – started calling, that’s when he knew that what he was doing was paying off.
“I was taught to never give up on anything, to just keep working and it would happen,” Claude said. “I think a lot of coaches noticed who I was and what I can be.”
And what does Claude believe he can be?
“An NBA point guard running a team,” he said. “That’s the big goal. I know there is a lot of work to be done, but nothing has ever been given to me. The way I was raised was keep working, keep working, keep working. That’s how I will approach everything going forward. I can be patient and work for it.”
By Stephen Nalbandian
Sports Information Director
Putnam Science Academy

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caption:

Bell Ringers Lauded
Members of the Putnam Rotary stand with Interact Club members who celebrated their successful annual Salvation Army Kettle bell ringing fund-raiser campaign. Above, at left are Rotarian advisors Woody Durst and Roberta Rocchetti. In the center is Putnam Rotary Club President J. Scott Pempek. At right, Pempek congratulates the top individual bell ringer, Abby Smith. Linda Lemmon photos.


By Linda Lemmon
Town Crier Editor
PUTNAM — The Putnam Rotary Club’s Interact Club conquered the brutal cold and raised more than $11,000 for the local Salvation Army. And they celebrated with pizza and awards.
Jan. 22 trophies and awards were given out to the top individual bell-ringer and top schools in raising $11,050 for the Salvation Army in the club’s annual bell-ringing campaign.
Rotary President J. Scott Pempek commended the Interactors “Thank you for the work you’ve done. My part was a brief 20 minutes on ‘Kettle Days,’” setting up the kettles and waiting for the Interact members and their friends to come ring the bells. “I got cold in those 20 minutes,” he said. ”Then I thought to myself “Wait, how did you guys stand out there in that cold for way longer than 20 minutes. Week after week?’ The cold was brutal and there you all were, ringing the bells to raise money.”
Abby Smith of The Woodstock Academy rang the bells for nine hours, and she was awarded the individual trophy. The 26-year-old trophy goes home with the winner and is brought back the next year to be awarded to the next top bell ringer. Tied for second on the individual race were Elizabeth Lovrien, Zack White and Curtis Desabre, all of The Woodstock Academy, with eight hours each.
In a blowout, The Woodstock Academy took the award for the school with the most volunteer hours with 182 hours. In second was Tourtellotte Memorial High School with 27 and Putnam High, with 31 hours, took third.
Schools taking part included: EO Smith, Killingly High, Plainfield High, Putnam High, Quinebaug Middle College, Tourtellotte and The Woodstock Academy.
Kathleen A. Orfitelli, Salvation Army Service Extension director, also commended the students and thanked them sincerely. "There is not another town that supports the Salvation Army the way you do," she said.
The 145 bell ringers, she said, raised $11,050 and she said Putnam had not broken the $10,000 ceiling since 2014.
She said: “Over the past years, young people have raised $228,160 under the guidance of the Rotary Club to support the needs of others; clearly exemplifying the Rotary motto: ‘Service Above Self.’”
“Because of your efforts,” she said, “you have helped to strengthen your community and will definitely make an impact in the lives of hundreds of people who struggle with day-to-day hardships.”

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Staton gets
employee award
DAYVILLE — Kaylee Staton, a member of the dining staff at Country Living at Westview Commons, received the December 2021 Employee of the Month award.
In addition to bringing the residents their cuisine, she brings her upbeat, effervescent personality to each table.
She is a resident of Dayville and a graduate of Killingly High School’s Class of 2016.  She is certified in CPR and general first-aid; having previously worked as a personal care assistant in clients’ homes.  
She likes cooking and baking and a good afternoon outdoors.
Executive Vice President of Country Living at Westview Commons, David T. Panteleakos, said: “Kaylee has become another bright star among the stellar staff at Westview Commons. She lifts the spirits of our residents before, during, and in-between each meal with her kindness and outgoing nature.   Even when wearing a facial covering, you can see Kaylee’s smile in her eyes!  Her friendliness extends to everyone at Westview Commons.  I greatly appreciate how she brings that same joy to all of her interactions among residents, visitors, and coworkers.”

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