The Journal Register (Medina, NY)

December 30, 2013

Looking back at 2013, and ahead to '14

Medina Journal-Register

Medina Journal-Register — The top stories of 2013 are listed on the front page of today’s paper. They are the ones deemed most important and intriguing and interesting to the readers of this publication.

However, as a journalist, despite the desensitization that comes with the job, we still have feelings.

I have some personal favorites from the past year.

For example, some of the most fun I had this year came when I met Mark Twain in Albion, as portrayed by Mike Randall. Like many students in high school, I read Twain’s acclaimed works about the troublemakers Tom Sawyer and Huckleberry Finn. I was supposed to read other books, too. And I did read some by Twain’s English counterpart Charles Dickens.

However, they were the only authors whose works I was able to fully read. Seeing Randall’s one-man show was an absolute treat. 

This year also saw a number of basket raffles and fundraisers for various causes. I am always amazed at the outpouring support in the community for local people and neighbors who need a hand.

But perhaps my favorite story of the year was one I was able to cover in early December when I visited the Frasier family in Lyndonville. The parents in the family have three children and their oldest, Jonathan, just celebrated his sixth birthday.

His younger sister, Molly, was born with a heart condition and he took it upon himself to raise money to buy toys for other children in the Rochester hospital where Molly had several surgeries. Too often in today’s world we see stories of youths getting away with more than they should, and getting more than they should.

Jonathan’s toy drive, which finished its second year this year, will likely continue next year. I, for one, hope it continues to grow and that his generous nature never goes away. His parents have every right to be proud.

MOVING INTO 2014, there are number of things that will need to be written about. 

Three stories from the Top 10 of 2013 that will likely find their way onto these pages include the fate of the Orleans County Nursing Home, anything concerning the misappropriated funds at Medina Memorial Hospital and the likely murder trial of the Carlton man accused of killing his housemate.

And though it did not make it onto the Top 10 list, talks concerning the dissolution of the Village of Medina could lead to significant changes to the governmental structure in the west end of Orleans County and the services provided to its residents.

A new year also is a time to make resolutions.

I’ll keep mine to myself, but I’ll also throw out the following suggestion: If you’re making a resolution try to make it reasonable and attainable, but not easy.

Challenge yourself, but not so much that you’ll disappoint yourself.

And with that, have a Happy New Year!

Howard Balaban is a reporter for the Journal-Register. He can be reached at