August 23, 2014
Thumbs up for the positive bill of health former Buffalo Bills quarterback Jim Kelly received this week. The Hall of Famer and fan favorite, who has been battling sinus cancer, will undergo additional tests. But this week’s news out of Lenox Hill Hospital in Manhattan was a welcome step in the right direction.
Thumbs up for local officials and organizers who convinced the Global Mural Arts & Cultural Tourism Association to hold its 2016 Global Mural Conference in the Erie Canal region. Exact dates and locations for the international event have yet to be announced.
Thumbs down for New York City tabloids the New York Post and Daily News, for their tasteless and insensitive front-page coverage of the barbaric murder of American photojournalist James Foley by an Islamic militant. Still images from the videotaped killing that show Foley in his final seconds were bad enough; images inside the News that depicted the aftermath, even though pixelated, were beyond despicable.
Thumbs up for the financial windfall New York is experiencing thanks to recent bank settlements. A $16.5 billion settlement with Bank of America announced Thursday will send $800 million the state’s way — $300 million to the general coffers, $500 million for consumer relief. The bank’s questionable mortgage-backed securities were at issue. Earlier in the week, Standard Chartered Bank agreed to pay the state $300 million to settle a money laundering probe. The lucre comes on top of $4.2 billion in previous bank settlements.
Thumbs up for golfer Inbee Park for rallying to capture this year’s Wegmans LPGA Championship — the last to be held locally. The defending champ became just the third player to win back-to-back tournaments in Rochester. And her sudden death playoff victory ensured that the local tournament’s final installment went out with a bang.
Thumbs up for long-time Rochester criminal defense attorney Peter J. Pullano for raising more than $50,000 over the past 10 years for AIDS-related charities and organizations. Pullano is participating in the 2014 AIDS Red Ribbon Ride, a five-day, 420-mile fundraiser. He has pedaled more than 5,000 miles in memory of his brother, who died of AIDS, in donation-generating bike rides since 2004.
Thumbs up for Wegmans, Patsy’s Porkers, Sarkis Caterers, and local sports teams for their donations toward the recent Extended School Year Special Olympics. Last-minute donations and volunteer efforts helped 210 students participate in this year’s event, a partnership between Special Olympics and the Rochester City School District.
Thumbs up for ConServe President Mark Davitt, his family and colleagues for sponsoring a Make-A-Wish trip to Disney World for a local 16-year-old and her family in July.