Residents defend volunteer for Laona

Editor, OBSERVER:

I would like to express my deep disgust about the article regarding the funds that were raised and collected for support of the Laona Halloween Parade. The article (April 17) insinuated that Evie Sievert was mishandling the funds and having no accountability for the money she raised from the sale of items during the Attic and Seller Days on town property last summer to benefit the Halloween events in Laona this past fall.

I feel strongly that she is owed a public apology for the accusations that were made against her through this article.

Evie is a hard-working dedicated woman who does not have a dishonest bone in her body. She volunteers at Boys and Girls clubs, tutors for Literacy Volunteers and works hard for the Laona church. She has organized and supported many activities for special needs children, and organizes and runs the annual Easter egg hunt in Laona.

She does these things because she is a good person who enjoys doing things for others and for her community.

I am certain that she has kept any receipts that the town might need to be certain the funds were spent in the proper way. I have known Evie as an employee at Board of Cooperative Educational Services for 20 years and no one has ever questioned her character or her accountability.

I understand that things change and the town has decided it was necessary to pass an amendment that any money collected must now be surrendered to the town. However, it needs to be made public that this decision was not based on the honest, well-meaning efforts of one individual.

Her name should have never been mentioned in regard to this issue. The way that article portrayed Evie Sievert was unfair. Let the members of the Town Board handle the events themselves. Evie can concentrate on her other community service projects that will benefit others !

BARBARA BINKIWITZ,

Fredonia

Woman is ‘always doing’ for area

Editor, OBSERVER:

I am writing to comment on the article about the Laona Playground funds (April 17).

I could not believe that someone could even think that Evie Sievert would even consider embezzling money. Anyone who knows Evie can tell you that she is a good Christian person and always doing for our community.

Let me tell you a little bit about the Easter and Halloween events. All the candy (about 400 pieces) is made by hand, baskets are assembled with Easter grass and other varieties of candy, prizes are raffled off, and maybe a 50-50 drawing is held. Volunteers hide several hundred eggs for the children to find. The children have a wonderful time.

The money raised from the Easter event is then put into the Halloween event. There is a parade with a band and prizes for every age group for their costumes; there is a haunted house, and candy for their bags. The night ends with cider and doughnuts. The money raised from the Halloween event is then put into the Easter event.

You see, all of this costs money, which is raised from these events and the generous donations by the people of Laona, along with their help in volunteering for these events for our children and the community to make them a success.

Not one time in 30 years has this money been used for personal use, but to also purchase an item for the playground (such as a swing).

We should be happy that we have someone who cares enough to do something good for our children and our community. Not to mention all of the Laona residents who have volunteered their services through the years to help make these events a success.

KATHY BUCKLEY,

Fredonia