LAKE HUNTINGTON, NY — In the 15-minute “no man’s land” between the close of a public hearing and the start of the May 12 Cochecton Town Board meeting, supervisor Gary Maas …
LAKE HUNTINGTON, NY — In the 15-minute “no man’s land” between the close of a public hearing and the start of the May 12 Cochecton Town Board meeting, supervisor Gary Maas paid tribute to two long-lived, longtime, one-of-a-kind town residents.
Betty Mae Susen (“Cowgirl”) Baker died on May 7 at the age of 91. Born on July 20, 1929 in Paterson, NJ, she married Owen Baker and moved, in 1959, to Friendly Acres, the Cochecton dairy farm she would call home for the next 60-plus years. This lady farmer did every chore expected of a first-rate male farmhand, from milking cows and making hay to birthing calves and shoveling manure. But that didn’t stop her from also doing what was expected from most women of her time. She raised four children: Candice, Ruth Ann, Kent and Dennis.
While raising her own family, Cowgirl Baker mentored young future farmers, even sponsoring an agricultural scholarship for those who demonstrated the dedication and hard work essential to running a successful farm. Baker’s own zest for life did not fade over the years; her advanced age was never a stumbling block to new experiences, many of which she enjoyed for the first time within the past couple of years.
A celebration of Cowgirl’s life will be held this summer at Friendly Acres Farm, date and time yet to be determined. In lieu of flowers, the family asks that you hug a cow.
William (“Billy”) Daub died on May 2 at the age of 99. Born April 11, 2022 in Cochecton Center, NY to William and Ida (Weyant) Daub, he was a graduate of Narrowsburg Central School, lettering in track and baseball. While serving as a corporal in the army during WWII, he was captured and imprisoned for 165 days in Stalag 2, a German POW camp. He also fought in several battles and was awarded a Purple Heart for injuries sustained in the line of duty.
After the war, Daub returned to Cochecton Center and worked as a self-employed house painter. By all accounts, he was a quiet, reclusive man who never married but soon acquired a reputation as an excellent “old school” craftsman. “I don’t think Billy knew what a paint roller was,” said Maas. “But he had brushes of every kind, size and shape.”
Maas also noted that Daub was an accomplished bowler who always knew what was going on. “I think he must have read newspapers from cover to cover every day, because he could tell you who was doing what, when and how.”
Maas said failing vision forced Daub into the Roscoe Nursing Home some years ago, and it was there that he died. Predeceased by his parents and sister, Marjorie Elizabeth Daub Kimble, Billy is survived by nieces, cousins and their families. A graveside service was held on May 11 at Lava Cemetery in Narrowsburg. Donations can be made to the Lava Cemetery, in care of Herbert Strunk (20 Iron Horse Ln., Bethany, PA 18431).
On the subsequent board meeting agenda was a Lake Huntington Lake Association report from Paul Salzberg. Medical doctor Salzberg said treatment of Lake Huntington with the algaecide SeClear is contraindicated this year, as SeClear is a curative treatment, not a preventative treatment, and the algae overgrowth seen in the lake last year has so far not been observed this year. The association plans to hold a meeting on Tuesday, July 13 at a venue still to be determined; all lakefront property owners are welcome.