Mother’s Day Vigil against Child Separation

Addressing the policy of inhumane treatment of children

Mother's Day Vigil

Citizen activists bring attention to the human rights abuses of detained children and separated families.

Mothers and local activist groups will stand in solidarity with actions across the country planned for Mother’s Day. We call on our government to end the traumatizing policies of separating and detaining children. We call upon our fellow citizens to stand with us in our objection and call to action. This will be a peaceful family-friendly event.

What: Mother’s Day Vigil to Stand Against Child Separation and Detention
Who: Capital District Border Watch, Progressive Schenectady, and Bethlehem Indivisible
Where: Albany NY, Corner of Madison Ave and New Scotland Ave.
When: Sunday May 12, 2019, 11:00am to 1:00pm
Why: The policy of inhumane treatment of children and the erosion of human rights and international refugee protocol

Bernie Massar, Barnyard (1953-2019)

The Professional Firefighter’s Cancer Fund is a non-profit 501(C)3 organization committed to raising funds for cancer research programs.

Bernard Massar.Jan KostyunKaren, Carol, Lois, Diane, Irene, Bill, Bernie and I all started kindergarten together at Daniel S. Dickinson, where we did K-9, and graduated from Binghamton (NY) Central High School together.

Because Bernie Massar lived in the opposite direction from most of us, down Clinton Street rather than up Mygatt Street, I spent less time with him outside of school than I did with most of the others. I’m not sure if I had even been to his house.

But he’d been to mine at least once. I had a birthday party when I was eight or nine. I don’t know if it was poor communication or something else, but only two people showed up, my Cub Scout buddy and classmate Ray, and Bernie.

He could be the life of the party, betraying his clean-cut look. I hadn’t seen him in a long time when he – and Karen, Carol, Lois, and Bill – attended a high school reunion c. 2006. I see this jocular fellow nicknamed Barnyard with a walrus mustache, who had been fighting fires for a living for 27 years.

Obviously, I have no current history with him. Yet however unconnected we had become, he’d show up unexpectedly in the back of my mind. Now, Bernie Massar, this guy I’d met when we were not quite five – his birthday is a couple weeks before mine, I still recall – has died at the age of 66 and I have this sense of wistfulness.

And from pancreatic cancer, making him the THIRD person I’ve known IRL who died from that dreadful disease in 2019, and the year’s not even half over.

It makes me want to donate to his designated charity, the Retired Professional Firefighter’s Cancer Fund, 4 Loretta Drive, Binghamton, NY 13905. It is a non-profit 501(C)3 organization committed to raising funds for cancer research programs, which has been doing great work, it appears.