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Letters to the Editor for Friday, April 3

Letters to the Editor for Friday, April 3

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Area lost a leader, friend in Walt Robb

Schenectady, the Capital District and the country lost a great American, when Walt Robb became the first person in Schenectady County to die from COVID-19. I lost a friend.
I met Walt in Wisconsin, where I was president of Beloit College and Walt headed up GE Medical Systems. He called one day and said he wanted to visit.
Years later, we both moved to Schenectady. Walt headed up GE’s R & D operation; I came to be president of Union College.
I asked Walt to join me in creating a business incubator at Union. He didn’t hesitate and provided the funding to purchase the building in which we housed USTART (Union Startups).
After I left Union and created a foundation for at-risk children, Walt was my first donor. He joined the board on another foundation effort on Hamilton Hill to provide a high school degree, life skills, construction training and jobs for the unemployed and underemployed.
The highlight in the 35 years I knew Walt was an event in January 2009. I told Walt, a fairly conservative Republican, I was, together with Betsy Henry, taking my son, her daughter and son, and other Schenectady High school students to Washington to witness the Obama inauguration. Walt, always open and inquisitive, said he wanted to join us, and he did.
Walt was a very successful businessman and the financial angel for many Capital District start-ups. He was an incredible person with a wonderful sense of humor and an even better friend.
Dr. Roger H. Hull

Follow basic rules to make walking safer

In this time of social distancing, more people than ever are walking outside in their neighborhoods to get some exercise and fresh air.
This kind of activity is very good for our physical and mental well-being. My observation is that many people do not seem to know, or have forgotten, one of the most important safety rules of the road: “If there is no sidewalk, walk facing traffic and as far from traffic as possible” per nhtsa.gov.
If walkers stay on the left-hand side of the road, they are automatically more than 6-feet away from each other. If you need to pass someone in your “lane,” walk over to the right and then back to the left. In my opinion, even if you are walking on sidewalks, it is easier to keep the recommended distance if you walk facing traffic. Please be aware of your surroundings and of what motorists and other walkers are doing. Following these simple rules will make us all safe and make our walks more enjoyable.
Beverly Skoll

Release inmates to save state money

Gov. Andrew Cuomo has said that he will have to make cuts in next year’s budget and said that municipalities and school will see cuts, or at least, no increases.
However, the spending that could most easily be reduced is for prisons.
Release those close to being released anyway; those who are sick and aged — if you are in a wheelchair, you are not likely to commit a crime. Release those locked up because of small amounts of drugs, users, not sellers. Release those over 55 — their recidivism is under 2%. Folks over 50 cost a lot more to maintain in prison than young people. The sick and elderly cost more. Bringing them home is the right and necessary thing to do.
Anita Paul

Which definition of Trump is accurate?

Our president seems to crave and perhaps even require recognition and praise. Often those who must do direct business with him cite his “incredible” leadership.
The online dictionary from Merriam-Webster lists two meanings for “incredible.” The second meaning is “amazing, extraordinary;” but the first is “too extraordinary and improbable to be believed.” I wonder which meaning is most often intended.
John Hershey
Ballston Lake

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