Regional

RENSSELAERVILLE — Michael and Ardis Fritz of Rensselaerville are happy to announce the engagement of their daughter Traci Ann Fritz to Matthew J. Landauer, the son of Janet A. Laudauer of Berne and the late John I. Landauer.

The Christmas we know today is rooted in a myriad of different cultures, and features a variety of traditions from throughout history, all blended together to form the modern holiday we celebrate.

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GUILDERLAND — A grieving mother wants her son’s death to be a wakeup call for the county jail.

Adam Rappaport’s suicide last month in the Albany County jail embodies two nationwide problems for inmates today — drug addiction and self-harm.

ALBANY — John J. “Jack” Helm — who loved working on cars and motorcycles, and helping his friends and family — died unexpectedly at Albany Medical Center Hospital on Saturday, Nov. 8, 2014.  He was 55.

Mr. Helm, who lived in Albany, had worked for many years as an auto body technician.

Before he hanged himself in his jail cell, Adam Rappaport doodled on prison stationery, lightly penciling in one corner, in small capital letters next to a six-point star the word "hope" — only this and nothing more.

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ALBANY — Alyssa Gaige, of East Berne earned the Girl Scout Silver Award for her project investigating wheelchair accessibility in Altamont last year.

People in households needing heating assistance can now apply for New York’s Home Energy Assistance Program. Eligible households can receive a one-time benefit of up to $625 this winter from the program, which is federally funded.

To The Editor:

Thank you for reporting the most recent details on the story about my son, Adam Rappaport.  We have been looking, and waiting, for answers about his final days, and appreciate that you were able to offer some clarity about his time "in reception" at the Albany County jail.

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The last time I took the Red Cross Adult Learn to Swim program was 17 years ago when I was 38.

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