March 8, 2021

Death Announced of Lifelong Democrat David Woolley, He “Devoted Himself to Performing Public Service”

David B. Woolley. File photo.

OLD LYME — It is with deep sadness that we report the death of David B. Woolley on Jan. 30, 2021.

After service in the Navy and a long, exemplary career in banking, he became a permanent resident of Old Lyme in 1989 when he moved into what had been his summer home at Old Lyme Shores.

To quote from his obituary, “During his entire adult life, David devoted himself to performing public service,” which included serving continuously as a member of the Old Lyme Board of Finance from 1995 through 2019. During that time, he was designated as a board of finance specialist to the Old Lyme Volunteer Fire Department.

His obituary states, “Mr. Woolley was a lifelong, dedicated member of the Democratic Party. He became a member of the Old Lyme Democratic Town Committee in 1994, was elected chairman in 2002, then served in that capacity continuously until 2018. He remained an extremely active member of the committee until the present time.”

It continues, “During that time, he oversaw a substantial increase in the Democratic party registration in the Town of Old Lyme, and the successful election of important town offices from the Democratic Party during this period,” adding, “He ran numerous fundraisers for the Party, including the beloved “Lobster Fest”. ”

The obituary notes, “David’s primary interest in life involved dedication of time and activities with his family and friends, and his many hours spent performing public service. He greatly enjoyed his political activities as a highly respected and loved member and chairman of the local Democratic Political Party.” He also served as President of the Old Lyme Shores Beach Association for many years.

Asked her reaction to hearing of Mr. Woolley’s passing, former Old Lyme Selectwoman Bonnie Reemsnyder said, “It is sad news about Dave. He was a true gentleman, cared deeply about Old Lyme, the beach communities and his fellow Democrats.”

She continued, “And he was always an advocate for me and other democrats who ran for office. In 2003 and 2005, we ran together for Selectman and First Selectman and he was so loyal, hardworking and determined. He will be greatly missed by many in Old Lyme.”

She concluded, “My heart goes out to his sister, Pat Cronin, who cared for him in his last days.”

Old Lyme Selectwoman Mary Jo Nosal offered similar sentiments, saying, “Dave Woolley was a gentleman to the core. He was a mentor to me and to many on the Old Lyme Democratic Town Committee. Dave was kind, fair and engaging. He was a good listener, thoughtful, a strategic thinker, and he always put Old Lyme and our residents first.”

She ended with the words, “I will miss him very much. My condolences to his family and many friends.”

We too, here at LymeLine, extend our sincere sympathies to Dave’s family and friends. He was a good and genuine man, who served his community endlessly. He will be deeply missed by many.

Feb. 19 COVID-19 Update: Cumulative Cases in Both Lyme, Old Lyme Hold at Previous Day’s Number

Photo by CDC on Unsplash

LYME/OLD LYME — The Daily Data Report for Connecticut issued Friday, Feb. 19, by the Connecticut Department of Public Health (CT DPH) for data as at 8:30 p.m., Thursday, Feb. 18, shows that cumulative cases (confirmed and probable) since the pandemic began are the same as those reported the previous day in both Lyme at 84 and Old Lyme at 277.

Old Lyme – No Change in Confirmed Cases 

Old Lyme now has a cumulative total (since the outbreak began) of 270 confirmed COVID-19 cases and SEVEN probable cases, making a TOTAL of 277 cases.

This represents NO CHANGE in the number of in the cumulative number of confirmed or probable cases reported Thursday, Feb. 18.

The total number of Old Lyme residents tested is 4,607, up 17 from the previous day’s number.

Lyme – No Change in Confirmed Cases 

Lyme now has a cumulative total (since the outbreak began) of 77 confirmed cases and SEVEN probable cases, making a TOTAL of 84 cases.

This represents NO CHANGE in the cumulative number of confirmed or probable cases reported Thursday, Feb. 18.

The total number of Lyme residents tested is 1,232, an increase of seven over the previous day’s number.

Old Lyme Moves Down into Orange (Second Highest) Zone for Two-Week New Case Rate, Lyme Moves Back into (Highest) Red

The report issued Thursday, Feb. 18, by the CT DPH for the average daily rate of new cases of COVID-19 by town during the past two weeks shows that Old Lyme has finally moved into the (second highest) Orange Zone — down from the state-identified Red Zone, where it has been since early December 2020. Unfortunately, Lyme has moved back into the ‘Red Zone’ with the highest rate of new cases.

Overall, the report contains good news with 10 towns now in the Gray Zone, four in the Yellow Zone and 16 in the Orange Zone.  This is a far cry from the map we published back in November when every town in the state was in the Red Zone.

As of the Feb. 18 report, Old Lyme now joins 16 other towns — Essex, Deep River, Kent, Sherman, Goshen, Granby, Winchester, New Hartford, Canton, Farmington, Portland, Haddam, Hebron, Lebanon, Bethany and Southbury — in the Orange Zone.

Redding, Woodbury, Pomfret and Salisbury are in the Yellow Zone.

The Gray Zone includes Bridgewater, Canaan, Cornwall,  Norfolk, Scotland, Hartland, Barkamsted, Eastford, Franklin and Warren.

  • The gray category is defined as when the Average Daily Rate of COVID-19 Cases Among Persons Living in Community Settings per 100,000 Population By Town is less than five or less than five reported cases.
  • The yellow category is defined as when the Average Daily Rate of COVID-19 Cases Among Persons Living in Community Settings per 100,000 Population By Town is between five and nine reported cases.
  • The orange category is defined as when the Average Daily Rate of COVID-19 Cases Among Persons Living in Community Settings per 100,000 Population By Town is between 10 and 14.
  • The red category is defined as when the Average Daily Rate of COVID-19 Cases Among Persons Living in Community Settings per 100,000 Population By Town exceeds 15.

In all cases, this rate does not include cases or tests among residents of nursing home, assisted living, or correctional facilities.

Three Fatalities in Old Lyme Since Pandemic Began, None in Lyme

According to the report mentioned above, there have now been THREE fatalities in Old Lyme. Asked Tuesday, Feb. 9, for details of this third fatality, Ledge Light Health Department Director of Health Stephen Mansfield responded, “We have not been notified of any recent deaths in Old Lyme. Keep in mind that that report is compiled by the Connecticut Department of Public Health; deaths are not reportable to local health districts.”

He added, “I can’t speak for their data sources.”

The two fatalities from Old Lyme previously reported in 2020 were a 61-year-old female and an 82-year-old male.

No fatalities have been reported in Lyme.

More Detail on Two-Week Case Rates

On Thursday, Feb. 18, Ledge Light Health District (LLHD) also issued their latest two-week  report of COVID data for the municipalities within their District. Ledge Light Director of Health Stephen Mansfield prefaces the report with the comment, “We are encouraged to see a moderate decrease in cases for the 4th consecutive reporting period, and are hopeful that this trend will continue.”

The latest two-week case rate announced Thursday, Feb. 18, for the period 1/31 to 2/13 per 100,000 population (compared with the previous two-week case rate for 1/24 to 2/06) has fallen in Old Lyme but increased in Lyme.

The two-week case rates are as follows:

  • Old Lyme from 25.2 to 11.6
  • Lyme from 12.2 to 21.4

The same report shows that the number of cases in Week 1 and Week 2 recorded for the period 1/31 to 2/13 (compared with the previous two-week case rate for 1/24 to 2/06 shown in parentheses) are as follows:

  • Lyme had(2) cases in Week 1 and(2) in Week 2
  • Old Lyme had 9 (17) cases in Week 1 and 3 (9) in Week 2

This data was updated Feb. 18, 2021.

Connecticut Hospital Occupancy

At the request of several readers, we are adding a new report today showing the respective rates of hospital occupancy at local hospitals. The data for this report is obtained from the Connecticut Hospital Occupancy Report published weekly by the CT DPH and extracted from the United States Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) facility-level data for hospital utilization aggregated on a weekly basis (Friday to Thursday).

[table id=10 /]

Editor’s Note: The state issues a COVID-19 metric report daily around 4 p.m. Monday through Friday, which includes current data up to the previous evening. In light of the serious rise in Coronavirus cases, we publish a new weekday update reporting confirmed and probable COVID-19 cases in Lyme and Old Lyme. The next CT DPH Daily Data Report for Connecticut will be issued in the afternoon of Monday, Feb. 22.

Old Lyme Visiting Nurse Association Launches New Website  

OLD LYME — The Old Lyme Visiting Nurse Association has announced the launch of its new website at this link

Holly Lyman, OLVNA President, told LymeLine.com exclusively, “We owe many thanks to our splendid website committee led by Carol Ridgway.  The site contains a wealth of historical information, thanks to Patsy McCook, Sarah Gleason, and our town’s indefatigable librarians.”

She added, “The site also links to local coronavirus initiatives, Town Nurse information and other health news.”

Noting, “I could write on and on about all the riches in our newest community resource, but this beautiful work speaks best for itself, she concluded with a chuckle, “We may be 99-years-old but we’re pretty hip!”

 

 

Photographer Leads Walk Through Thach Preserve in Lyme, Feb 27; Join to Experience Changing Light

Light over Lyme. Photo by Joe Standart.

LYME — 2/20 UPDATE: This walk has been postponed from Feb. 20 to Feb. 27. The walk is full — send an email to be put on the waiting list. Join a walk through the Thach Preserve, guided by photographer Joe Standart this Saturday, Feb. 20, from 4 to 6 p.m. to experience light before and after the sun sets.

Reservations are required. To register, email education@lymelandtrust.org

Space is limited to 10 people including the leaders. Be safe- wear a mask when meeting in the parking lot. Social distancing guidelines will be followed.

The walk is part of the Lyme Land Trust amateur photography program: Imagining Lyme – A Visual Exploration of Lyme’s Preserves, which encourages people to expand their visual awareness while highlighting the beauty of Lyme Preserves through photographs. For more information, visit ImaginingLyme.org.

The deadline for submission of photos for the fall/winter season using the category “Light” is March 19, 2021. Three photos of distinction will be chosen.

The Thach Preserve is located at 131 Brush Hill Rd., Lyme CT.

 

Death of Alan R. Bernier, 65, Announced; Brother of Joanne Slezycki of Lyme

THOMPSON, CT – Alan R. Bernier, 65 of Thompson passed away peacefully on February 12, 2021. He was the loving husband of Patrice (Mikolajczak) Bernier for 38 years. Born in Putnam October 16, 1955, son of the late Roland and Lauretta (Nadeau) Bernier.

Alan was the Pathology Manager at St. Vincent’s Hospital in Worcester until he retired …

… He leaves his wife Patrice, children Danielle Wallace and her husband Jeffrey of Thompson, CT, David Bernier and his wife Stephanie of Arvada, CO, siblings Jeanne Johnson and her husband Richard of Thompson, CT, Joanne Slezycki and her husband Ray of Lyme, CT …

Visit this link to read the full obituary published Feb. 14, in Worcester Telegram & Gazette.

Feb. 18 COVID-19 Update: Old Lyme’s Case Rate Moves Down Into Orange Zone, Lyme Goes Back Into Red: OL Cumulative Cases Up One to 277, Lyme Steady at 84

This map shows the average daily rate of new cases of COVID-19 by town during the past two weeks. The Town of Old Lyme is now recorded in the Orange Zone while Lyme has moved back into the Red Zone. (Only cases among persons living in community settings are included in this map; the map does not include cases among people who reside in nursing home, assisted living, or correctional facilities.)

LYME/OLD LYME — The Daily Data Report for Connecticut issued Thursday, Feb. 18, by the Connecticut Department of Public Health (CT DPH) for data as at 8:30 p.m., Wednesday, Feb. 17, shows that cumulative cases (confirmed and probable) since the pandemic began in Old Lyme have increased by one since the previous day to 277, while in Lyme they are still at 84.

Old Lyme Moves Down into Orange (Second Highest) Zone for Two-Week New Case Rate, Lyme Moves Back into (Highest) Red

The report issued Thursday, Feb. 18, by the CT DPH for the average daily rate of new cases of COVID-19 by town during the past two weeks shows that Old Lyme has finally moved into the (second highest) Orange Zone — down from the state-identified Red Zone, where it has been since early December 2020. Unfortunately, Lyme has moved back into the ‘Red Zone’ with the highest rate of new cases.

Overall, the report contains good news with 10 towns now in the Gray Zone, four in the Yellow Zone and 16 in the Orange Zone.  This is a far cry from the map we published back in November when every town in the state was in the Red Zone.

As of the Feb. 18 report, Old Lyme now joins 16 other towns — Essex, Deep River, Kent, Sherman, Goshen, Granby, Winchester, New Hartford, Canton, Farmington, Portland, Haddam, Hebron, Lebanon, Bethany and Southbury — in the Orange Zone.

Redding, Woodbury, Pomfret and Salisbury are in the Yellow Zone.

The Gray Zone includes Bridgewater, Canaan, Cornwall,  Norfolk, Scotland, Hartland, Barkamsted, Eastford, Franklin and Warren.

  • The gray category is defined as when the Average Daily Rate of COVID-19 Cases Among Persons Living in Community Settings per 100,000 Population By Town is less than five or less than five reported cases.
  • The yellow category is defined as when the Average Daily Rate of COVID-19 Cases Among Persons Living in Community Settings per 100,000 Population By Town is between five and nine reported cases.
  • The orange category is defined as when the Average Daily Rate of COVID-19 Cases Among Persons Living in Community Settings per 100,000 Population By Town is between 10 and 14.
  • The red category is defined as when the Average Daily Rate of COVID-19 Cases Among Persons Living in Community Settings per 100,000 Population By Town exceeds 15.

In all cases, this rate does not include cases or tests among residents of nursing home, assisted living, or correctional facilities.

Old Lyme – Confirmed Cases Up One

Old Lyme now has a cumulative total (since the outbreak began) of 270 confirmed COVID-19 cases and SEVEN probable cases, making a TOTAL of 277 cases. (The numbers reported Wednesday, Feb. 17, were respectively 269 confirmed and 7 probable cases.)

This represents an INCREASE of ONE in the cumulative number of confirmed cases and NO CHANGE in the number of probable cases.

The total number of Old Lyme residents tested is 4,590, up three from the previous day’s number.

Lyme – No Change in Confirmed Cases 

Lyme now has a cumulative total (since the outbreak began) of 77 confirmed cases and SEVEN probable cases, making a TOTAL of 84 cases.

This represents NO CHANGE in the cumulative number of confirmed or probable cases over the number reported Wednesday, Feb. 17.

The total number of Lyme residents tested is 1,225, up one from the previous day’s number.

Three Fatalities in Old Lyme Since Pandemic Began, None in Lyme

According to the report mentioned above, there have now been THREE fatalities in Old Lyme. Asked Tuesday, Feb. 9, for details of this third fatality, Ledge Light Health Department Director of Health Stephen Mansfield responded, “We have not been notified of any recent deaths in Old Lyme. Keep in mind that that report is compiled by the Connecticut Department of Public Health; deaths are not reportable to local health districts.”

He added, “I can’t speak for their data sources.”

The two fatalities from Old Lyme previously reported in 2020 were a 61-year-old female and an 82-year-old male.

There have been no fatalities in Lyme.

More Detail on Two-Week Case Rates

On Thursday, Feb. 18, Ledge Light Health District (LLHD) also issued their latest two-week  report of COVID data for the municipalities within their District. Ledge Light Director of Health Stephen Mansfield prefaces the report with the comment, “We are encouraged to see a moderate decrease in cases for the 4th consecutive reporting period, and are hopeful that this trend will continue.”

The latest two-week case rate announced Thursday, Feb. 18, for the period 1/31 to 2/13 per 100,000 population (compared with the previous two-week case rate for 1/24 to 2/06) has fallen in Old Lyme but increased in Lyme.

The two-week case rates are as follows:

  • Old Lyme from 25.2 to 11.6
  • Lyme from 12.2 to 21.4

The same report shows that the number of cases in Week 1 and Week 2 recorded for the period 1/31 to 2/13 (compared with the previous two-week case rate for 1/24 to 2/06 shown in parentheses) are as follows:

  • Lyme had(2) cases in Week 1 and(2) in Week 2
  • Old Lyme had 9 (17) cases in Week 1 and 3 (9) in Week 2

This data was updated Feb. 18, 2021.

Connecticut Hospital Occupancy

At the request of several readers, we are adding a new report today showing the respective rates of hospital occupancy at local hospitals. The data for this report is obtained from the Connecticut Hospital Occupancy Report published weekly by the CT DPH and extracted from the United States Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) facility-level data for hospital utilization aggregated on a weekly basis (Friday to Thursday).

[table id=10 /]

Editor’s Note: The state issues a COVID-19 metric report daily around 4 p.m. Monday through Friday, which includes current data up to the previous evening. In light of the serious rise in Coronavirus cases, we publish a new weekday update reporting confirmed and probable COVID-19 cases in Lyme and Old Lyme. The next CT DPH Daily Data Report for Connecticut will be issued in the afternoon of Friday, Feb. 19.

Mass COVID-19 Vaccination Site Opens at Mohegan Sun, Operating on Appointment-Only Basis for Eligible CT Residents

HARTFORD, CT – In a continued effort to meet public health needs relating to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, Governor Ned Lamont, the Mohegan Tribe, and Yale New Haven Health System today announced plans to open a large-scale community vaccination site at Mohegan Sun.

The clinic will open Friday, Feb. 19, and be located at Mohegan Sun’s Earth Expo & Convention Center. It will operate on an appointment-only basis, weather permitting, and is available for Connecticut residents.

On the first day of operations, the clinic is expected to serve up to 300 Connecticut residents with the ability to increase vaccine distribution based on availability.

Additional appointments will be added regularly as more supply of the vaccine becomes available by the federal government. It will operate in accordance with existing state rules and procedures relating to vaccine eligibility.

Connecticut residents, who are currently eligible to be vaccinated, can schedule an appointment for the clinic by visiting www.ynhhs.org/covidvaccine and selecting the Mohegan Sun location. Appointments will also be available through the state’s COVID Vaccine Appointment Assist Line at 877-918-2224, which is open seven days a week from 8 a.m. to 8 p.m.

“This latest mass vaccination site shows the coordinated effort our state is making with our tribal partners, and our partners in healthcare,” Governor Lamont said

“The Mohegan Tribe has a long-held philosophy of cooperation and working together with our neighbors, and throughout this pandemic we have practiced those values each and every day,” James Gessner, Chairman of the Mohegan Tribe, said

“We are excited to provide more COVID-19 vaccinations to the residents in southeastern Connecticut,” Patrick Green, President and CEO of L+M Healthcare, said

Under the current phase of Connecticut’s vaccination program, individuals aged 65 and over are eligible to be vaccinated, and will soon expand to include more eligible groups.

For updates on the state’s phased rollout, visit ct.gov/covidvaccine.

Editor’s Note: This article is based on a press release issued by the Office of the Governor.

Death Announced of Rose G. Low, Mother of Becky Machnik of Old Lyme

Rose G. Lowe

Rose G. Low of Daleville, Va. was born on October 21, 1929, passed away peacefully on Friday, February 5, 2021. Rose was raised in Bedford, Va. before earning a degree from George Washington University in Washington, D.C. From there, she moved to Rockville, Maryland where she welcomed her four children.

The family moved from Maryland to New Hampshire and Rose took a job with Dartmouth College. After the adventure of rural living, she spent several years in New York City working for Barnard College. She then moved to Boston, working first for Brandeis and then Boston University. She finished her career as Dean of Development for Dean College in Franklin, Massachusetts before returning to Virginia for retirement.

Her passions included traveling, gardening, and family history. She traveled the world with her family and friends, and she shared that love of travel by taking each of her grandchildren to a destination of their choice when they turned 13. Her sense of adventure took her to far-flung places that included Russia, Australia, New Zealand, Greece and Egypt and a trip to Italy with her three daughters for her 75th birthday.

Her garden was where she could be found when she wasn’t traveling; she was president of the Brae and Beck garden club in Fincastle for three year and knew the Latin names of everything she grew.

Because family was so important to her, she kept photos, letters, and knew many details of her family’s history, some of which dates back to the Civil War. She was loved by many and will be greatly missed.

Rose was preceded in death by her son, Jim Low; her brother, Reid Gills; and sister, Virginia McCutcheon (Gills). She is survived by her three daughters, Leslie Martien (Charlie) of Boulder, Colorado, Becky Machnik (Todd) of Old Lyme, Connecticut, and Norma Low of Huntsville, Alabama; her grandchildren, Angie Lewis (Phillip), Tom Machnik (Kat), Catherine Hammond (Skip), Kevin Machnik (Holly), Peter Machnik (Lauren), and Dinesh Martien (Karen); her great-grandchildren, David, Dylan, Lelia, Ben, Gabriella, and Miranda; her brother, Charlie Gills; and many nieces and nephews.

My mission in life is not merely to survive, but to thrive; and to do so with some passion, some compassion, some humor, and some style. (Maya Angelou)

Rose lived her life with passion, compassion, humor, and style. She left her mark on this world and will be carried on in all who loved her.

Services will be planned for a future date. Online condolences may be shared with the family by visiting www.oakeys.com. Arrangements entrusted to Oakey’s Funeral Service – East Chapel, Roanoke, Va., (540) 977-3909.

‘Pollinator Pathway’ Chapter Started in Lyme


LYME —
A new chapter of this national effort has been established in Lyme. The Lyme Land Trust and the Lyme Public Library have joined with other Lyme organizations and individuals to work together and establish patches of pollinator plants and pathways between them.

Do you already have a patch (big or small) to add to the pathway? Or do you want to create one?

A kick-off event will be held Thursday, Feb. 18, at 7 p.m. titled, Exploring the Importance of Pollinator Pathways.

Learn about Pollinator Pathways in this Zoom presentation with eco-friendly gardening experts Jim Sirch and Mary Ellen Lemay. Pollinator pathways are corridors of pesticide-free native plants that nourish bees, butterflies, and other pollinators, which are vital for the health of the planet.

Pollinator pathways are pesticide-free corridors of native plants that provide nutrition and habitat for bees, butterflies, and other pollinators, which are vital for the health of the planet. These pathways are crucial to biodiversity, the production of healthy crops, and the health of ecosystems that wild animals rely on for food and habitat.
Most native plants require less watering and upkeep than ornamentals and the pollinators you attract will help your other garden plants and vegetables flourish as well.
Watching butterflies fluttering carelessly through our yards, drifting from here to there on a gentle breeze, occasionally stopping to display their colorful murals relieves stress. Why not create an area for them to thrive?
Many Lyme residents have part of their yards that are mostly unused or a patch of grass they are constantly maintaining and can never get just right.
Join this effort to learn about the benefits of pollinator pathways and how you can create your own.

Jim Sirch is Education Coordinator for the Yale Peabody Museum for Natural History. Mary Ellen LeMay owns a company that specializes in the use of natural systems for habitat restoration.

This presentation is free and open to all, brought to you by the Friends of the Lyme Public Library. To register for this program, email  programreg@lymepl.org. You will receive a Zoom link several days before the presentation.

For more information, call the library at 860-434-2272, follow the Lyme Pollinator Pathway Facebook page or email LymePollinator@gmail.com.

 

Feb. 16 &17 COVID-19 Update: Lyme Cumulative Cases Rise to 85, Old Lyme Holds at 276

LYME/OLD LYME — The Daily Data Report for Connecticut issued Wednesday, Feb. 17, by the Connecticut Department of Public Health (CT DPH) for data as at 8:30 p.m., Tuesday, Feb. 16, shows that cumulative cases (confirmed and probable) since the pandemic began in Lyme have increased by one to 84, while in Old Lyme they are at 276.

The cumulative totals reported yesterday (Tuesday, Feb. 16) for data as at 8:30 p.m., Monday, Feb. 15, were 83 for Lyme, which was the same as those reported Monday’s, while Old Lyme’s were up one at 277, but that has now been reduced back to Monday’s total of 276 today.

It should be noted that Monday reports always include data for the previous Friday, Saturday and Sunday.

Old Lyme – No Change in Confirmed Cases

Old Lyme now has a cumulative total (since the outbreak began) of 269 confirmed COVID-19 cases and SEVEN probable cases, making a TOTAL of 276 cases. (The numbers for Tuesday, Feb. 16, were respectively 270 confirmed and 7 probable cases.)

This represents NO CHANGE in the cumulative number of confirmed or probable cases.

The total number of Old Lyme residents tested is 4,587, the same as the previous day’s number.

Lyme – No Change in Confirmed Cases 

Lyme now has a cumulative total (since the outbreak began) of 77 confirmed cases and SEVEN probable cases, making a TOTAL of 84 cases.

This represents NO CHANGE in the cumulative number of confirmed cases over the number reported Tuesday, Feb. 16, and an INCREASE of ONE in the cumulative number of probable cases.

There have been no fatalities in Lyme.

The total number of Lyme residents tested remains at 1,224, the same as the previous day’s number.

Old Lyme Still in Red (Highest) Zone for Two-Week New Case Rate, Lyme in (Lowest) Gray

The report issued Friday, Feb. 12, by the CT DPH for the average daily rate of new cases of COVID-19 by town during the past two weeks shows that Old Lyme is still in the state-identified ‘Red Zone’ with the highest rate of new cases, where it has been since early December 2020.

Lyme, however, has moved back into the Gray Zone — the zone which has the lowest rate of new cases — for the first time since Dec. 18, 2020.

As of the Feb. 12 report, Lyme now joins Bridgewater, Canaan, Cornwall, Colebrook, Norfolk, Scotland, Union and Warren  in the Gray Zone, while Deep River, Barkhamsted, Kent, Redding and Salisbury are in the Orange Zone –.

  • The gray category is defined as when the Average Daily Rate of COVID-19 Cases Among Persons Living in Community Settings per 100,000 Population By Town is less than five or less than five reported cases.
  • The orange category is defined as when the Average Daily Rate of COVID-19 Cases Among Persons Living in Community Settings per 100,000 Population By Town is between 10 and 14.
  • The red category is defined as when the Average Daily Rate of COVID-19 Cases Among Persons Living in Community Settings per 100,000 Population By Town exceeds 15.

In all cases, this rate does not include cases or tests among residents of nursing home, assisted living, or correctional facilities.

Three Fatalities in Old Lyme Since Pandemic Began, None in Lyme

According to the report mentioned above, there have now been THREE fatalities in Old Lyme. Asked Tuesday, Feb. 9, for details of this third fatality, Ledge Light Health Department Director of Health Stephen Mansfield responded, “We have not been notified of any recent deaths in Old Lyme. Keep in mind that that report is compiled by the Connecticut Department of Public Health; deaths are not reportable to local health districts.”

He added, “I can’t speak for their data sources.”

The two fatalities from Old Lyme previously reported in 2020 were a 61-year-old female and an 82-year-old male.

Lyme’s cumulative total stayed constant at 78 in Wednesday’s CT DPH report holding at Tuesday’s number.

More Detail on Two-Week Case Rates

On Thursday, Feb. 11, Ledge Light Health District (LLHD) also issued their latest two-week  report of COVID data for the municipalities within their District. Ledge Light Director of Health Stephen Mansfield prefaces the report with the comment, “We are encouraged to see a moderate decrease in cases for the 4th consecutive reporting period, and are hopeful that this trend will continue.”

The latest two-week case rate per 100,000 population announced Thursday, Feb. 11, has fallen in both Lyme and Old Lyme, which, in turn, reflects the fact that the number of cases has fallen in both towns over the two week-period.

The two-week case rate for the period 1/24 to 2/06 decreased (compared with the previous two-week case rate for 1/17 to 1/30)  as follows:

  • Lyme from 21.4 to 12.2
  • Old Lyme from 38.8 to 25.2.

The same report shows that the number of cases recorded for the period 1/24 to 2/06 also decreased (compared with the previous two-week case rate for 1/17 to 1/30 shown in parentheses) as follows:

  • Lyme had(5) cases in Week 1 and 2 (2) in Week 2
  • Old Lyme had 17 (23) cases in Week 1 and (17) in Week 2

This data was updated Feb. 11, 2021.

Connecticut Hospital Occupancy

At the request of several readers, we are adding a new report today showing the respective rates of hospital occupancy at local hospitals. The data for this report is obtained from the Connecticut Hospital Occupancy Report published weekly by the CT DPH and extracted from the United States Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) facility-level data for hospital utilization aggregated on a weekly basis (Friday to Thursday).

[table id=10 /]

Editor’s Note: The state issues a COVID-19 metric report daily around 4 p.m. Monday through Friday, which includes current data up to the previous evening. In light of the serious rise in Coronavirus cases, we publish a new weekday update reporting confirmed and probable COVID-19 cases in Lyme and Old Lyme. The next CT DPH Daily Data Report for Connecticut will be issued in the afternoon of Thursday, Feb. 18.

Join RTPEC’s Three-Part Course on ‘Gulls & Terns’ Starting Today

LYME/OLD LYME — Starting tomorrow, Tuesday, Feb. 16, the Roger Tory Peterson Estuary Center hosts a new three-part session on ‘Gulls and Terns,’ which is part of its “For The Birds” live and interactive virtual series. These live webinars take place on Tuesdays from 7 to 8 p.m. and require the use of Zoom.

Often overlooked on Connecticut’s shore, gulls and terns are some of our most common, yet at the same time, difficult to identify birds. Learn which species call Connecticut home and how to identify them in their various plumages.

Each three-week mini-course will center on a different theme and include an hour-long interactive live webinar per week. This will include a live Q&A as well as access to the webinar recording for the duration of your subscription, resource lists — which will include common species identification — and a list of recommended field guides, apps, and websites.
The price for the course is $30 for members and $45 for non-members.
The schedule for the course is as follows:

Feb. 16 -Week 1:
Discover the adaptations, migration, feeding and breeding habits, conservation and human interactions that make gulls and terns unique.

Feb. 23 -Week 2:
Recognize characteristics and gain understanding in identifying Connecticut’s different gull species.

March 2 -Week 3
:
Terns are in the same family as gulls and can also be difficult to identify. Wrap up the week with learning how to tell the difference between Connecticut’s tern species.

To register for the course, visit this link.

Death Announced of Alice (Mehegan) Visgilio, Mother of John of Old Lyme

Alice Visgilio

Alice (Mehegan) Visgilio, 84, of Westerly, RI, formerly of East Hartford, CT passed away peacefully surrounded by her husband and children on February 10, 2021.

Born in Hartford, CT, daughter of Nicholas and M. Cecelia Mehegan, Alice was a graduate of Mount St. Joseph Academy and St. Joseph College both in West Hartford, CT. She met her husband Joseph on the beach in Misquamicut, RI where they later spent summers with their family and ultimately retired.

Alice lived her life devoted to the catholic faith and in her later years, she was a faithful member of St. Clare’s Catholic Church in Westerly, RI serving as a Eucharistic Minister and Chair of the Hospitality Ministry.

To Alice, family was everything and everyone she met was family. She created a home where all were welcome and your favorite meal was always cooking on the stove. To many she was known as Alice, Mrs. V, or Aunt Alice, but to her favorite people she was Allie, Mom, or Mimi. But no matter what you called her, her infectious laugh, warm hugs, and selflessness will be missed. She inspires us to live by her example – cherish your family, live faithfully and LOVE ONE ANOTHER.

Seashells remind us that every passing life leaves something beautiful behind. Alice leaves behind her loving husband Joseph to whom she was married for 62 years and her five children and their families: Peter (Ann) of West Hartford, CT: Robbie (Laura Kisatsky) of Cornwall, CT; Meg Strickland (Ken) of Glastonbury, CT; John (Wendy) of Old Lyme, CT; and Tim (Paula) of Madison, CT. She also leaves 13 grandchildren: Paul (Jenai), Molly, Matt, Tyler, Rachel, Hannah, Abby, Brenna, Will, John Michael, Evan, Jack and Kate, and many nieces and nephews. These are Alice’s seashells. Alice was predeceased by her infant son Michael and her two sisters: Sr. Joanne Mehegan and Denise Fleming.

Alice’s family would like to thank the ICU staff of Westerly Hospital and for the prayers of family and friends around the world. In lieu of flowers, the family suggests donations in Alice’s memory to: St. Clare’s Church, 62 Crandall Ave., Westerly, RI 02891 or High Watch Recovery Center, Attn: Donations, POBox 607, Kent, CT 06757 that saved her son’s life.

Due to Covid restrictions, Mass of Christian Burial will be private.

Gaffney-Dolan Funeral Home, 59 Spruce St., Westerly is in care of the arrangements. For online condolences please visit www.gaffneydolanfuneralhome.com

Death Announced of Guy G. Ortoleva, 100, Father of Tom of Old Lyme

Guy Ortoleva

Guy G. Ortoleva, 100, of Milford died peacefully surrounded by family on February 12, 2021 after a long illness. Guy lived a full and active life, had a wonderful sense of humor, and will be missed by many.

Always a bit of a Renaissance man, Guy graduated from McLane Art Institute in New York City and went on to use his talents for both work and pleasure. His career spanned many years from designing radio cabinets to creative displays in retail. As a longtime employee of Sears he used his artistic design, carpentry, and electrical skills to build remarkable displays and in some years, elaborate Santa’s workshops. A do it your-selfer before it was fashionable, Guy could build anything from recovered parts and some innovation. His children and anyone who worked with him learned many tips and techniques to solve problems with style and polish. In 2001 he was honored by Sears with a trip to Chicago to meet with top executives in appreciation for his 50 years of creative and loyal service.

An accomplished artist, especially of area landscapes, many of Guy’s watercolors were displayed at the Milford Public Library and can be found adorning the walls in the homes of each of his children. He had a diverse set of interests including photography, hypnotism, palm reading and stilt walking. He enjoyed music and could play the piano by ear.
In his younger days Guy was a daredevil pilot and enjoyed flying Piper Cub planes. He could often be seen performing his hair-raising stunts over the family owned Elm Terrace grounds in West Haven when flying was less restrictive, and his independent nature could take flight. Although he set aside his painting and flying interests while raising his family, he was able to return to painting watercolors and even flying for a short time following his retirement.

Born August 8, 1920, the youngest child of Giovanni and Angelina Ortoleva, Guy grew up in the Wooster Square area of New Haven. He loved spending time chatting and playing cards with family and a few close friends. His family likes to think Guy passed on Friday morning to make it in time for the traditional Friday night pinochle game with his beloved predeceased siblings Jim, John, Ernie, Mary, and brother-in-law Vito.

Guy was also predeceased by his first wife, the late Helen Mooney. He is survived by Barbara Lynch Ortoleva his devoted wife of over 64 years and his nine adoring children: Guy E. Ortoleva (Susan) of Hamden, Daniel Ortoleva of Milford, Donna Burlison of Wallingford, Carol Cunningham (Edward) of Andover, Walter Ortoleva (Luba) of Milford, Thomas Ortoleva (Tracie) of Old Lyme, Barbara Petrillo (John) of West Haven, Peter Ortoleva (Holly) of Orange, and Lori Ortoleva-Donnelly (Jim) of Wallingford. He also leaves behind 18 grandchildren and the list of great-grandchildren continues to grow.

The family would like to thank Tanya, Lawayna and Debra of Marcel Home Care for their gentle care and devotion to Guy and his family and VNA Community Healthcare and Hospice for their guidance and support.

Family and friends may pay their respects on Saturday, February 20, 2021 from 10:00 a.m. to 12:00 p.m. at St. Mary Church (Precious Blood Parish), 70 Gulf St., Milford, CT. A Mass of Christian Burial will follow at 12:00 p.m. Due to size gathering limitations, the church can accommodate up to 100 people at a time with masks and social distancing. Burial will be private.

In lieu of flowers, the family requests donations to Alzheimer’s Association, 2911 Dixwell Ave., Hamden, CT 06518 or www.alz.org or a charity of your choosing. To leave online condolences, please visit www.codywhitefuneralservice.com.

First Case of COVID-19 ‘South African Variant’ Detected in CT Resident, 42 Cases of ‘British Variant’ Now Confirmed

COVID-19. Image from CDC.

HARTFORD – Governor Lamont and state public health officials today announced in a press release issued by the Connecticut Department of Health that the B.1.351 variant of the COVID-19 virus, the so-called “South African” variant, has been detected in a Connecticut patient, who is currently hospitalized out of state with the virus. 

The individual’s condition is improving.  This is the first known case of the B.1.351 variant in a Connecticut resident.

The Connecticut patient is a Fairfield County resident between the ages of 60-70 who has not travelled recently.  The B.1.351 variant was reported this weekend by public health officials in New York.  CT Department of Public Health and local health officials are coordinating with officials in New York; contact tracing has been completed.  

Like the variant, the B.1.351 variant is more contagious than the original COVID-19 virus.  This strain of the virus was first detected in South Africa in October 2020 and was first discovered in the United States at the end of January 2021.   According to the CDC, there is no evidence to suggest that this variant has any impact on disease severity.

With 42 confirmed cases of the B.1.1.7 variant and now the discovery of the B.1.351 variant in Connecticut, public health officials reiterated the need for continued vigilance including wearing masks, social distancing, avoiding gatherings with individuals who do not reside in your household and isolating when sick. 

“Seeing another variant in our state reminds us yet again the severity of this pandemic and reinforces the need for us to take all of the necessary precautions which have proven to be successful over the past year. The virus does not recognize state boundaries, and it certainly does not recognize international borders, which means the responsibility is on all of us to do what we can on a personal basis to mitigate the spread,” said Governor Lamont. 

Acting DPH Commissioner Dr. Deidre Gifford advised that Connecticut residents should follow new CDC guidance issued last week calling for double masking in certain circumstances.

“With the variants currently circulating in the United States and in Connecticut, it is more important than ever to prevent transmission of the virus.  We do that by ensuring that masks are being worn correctly and are as effective as possible.  Masks should always cover the nose and mouth completely.  In some instances, a cloth mask along with a surgical mask may be the best approach according to the CDC, in order to prevent droplets from escaping or entering through gaps in masks,” said Acting Commissioner Gifford. 

Old Lyme Children’s Learning Center Opens Registration for Variety of Programs

OLD LYME — The Old Lyme Children’s Learning Center (OLCLC) is delighted to announce that it has opened enrollment for the following programs:
  • Before-School Care at Center School (7 to 8:30 a.m. M-F)
  • After-School Care at Center School (2:30 to 5:30 p.m. M-F))
  • July Preschool Experience (six-week camp for preschool age students with the option of Before- and After-Care)
  • Fall of 2021 registrations in Infants and Toddler/Toddler Programs
For more information or to register, contact OLCLC at 860-434-1728 or email preschoolprogram@comcast.net (preschool experiences) or asprogram@comcast.net (before- or after-school care.)

Death of Patricia “Pat” Operhall McBeth of Old Lyme Announced. An ‘Extraordinary Life’

OLD LYME — It is with great sadness we must let her family and friends know that Patricia “Pat” Operhall McBeth, who resided in Old Lyme, passed away Friday, Jan. 29, 2021. Pat passed away peacefully surrounded by her loving family. She struggled with complications from COVID-19, …

… Pat is survived by her husband, Robert Blair McBeth Jr.; her two daughters, Sarah McBeth Henderson (husband Brian) and Caitlin McBeth Griswold (husband Ryan); her sister Judith Schaaf; and five adoring grandchildren …

… Pat and her husband Blair were happily married nearly 45 years and enjoyed a life together full of love and family. They resided in Wilton where they raised their daughters and more recently, retired in Old Lyme …

… A celebration of Pat’s extraordinary life will be planned for later this year …

Visit this link to read the full obituary published Feb. 14, in The Day

Death Announced of Michael Anthony Tucchio of Lyme, ‘Sang with the Lyme Village Voices’

LYME — Michael Anthony Tucchio, 84, of Lyme entered eternal life Feb. 8, 2021, at home in the comfort of his loving family. He was born July 7, 1936, in New London.

He is survived by, his beloved wife Gretchen (Marsh-Standland) Tucchio. Mr. Tucchio retired from the Naval Underwater System Center …

… His life was filled with a love for music, outdoors and his family. He sang with the Lyme Village Voices and enjoyed playing piano and organ. Music always filled his heart …

Visit this link to read the full obituary published Feb. 14, in The Day.

Feb. 12 COVID-19 Update: No New Cases Reported in Lyme, Old Lyme; Both Hold at Previous Days’ Cumulative Totals of 79 & 272

LYME/OLD LYME — The Daily Data Report for Connecticut issued Friday, Feb. 12, by the Connecticut Department of Public Health (CT DPH) for data as at 8:30 p.m., Thursday, Feb. 11, shows that neither Lyme nor Old Lyme had any new COVID-19 confirmed or probable cases reported since the previous day.

Old Lyme’s COVID-19 cumulative case numbers (confirmed and probable) since the pandemic began held at the number reported Thursday, Feb. 11, of 272 while Lyme’s similarly were steady at 79.

Old Lyme Still in Red (Highest) Zone for Two-Week New Case Rate, Lyme in (Lowest) Gray

The report issued Friday, Feb. 12, by the CT DPH for the average daily rate of new cases of COVID-19 by town during the past two weeks shows that Old Lyme is still in the state-identified ‘Red Zone’ with the highest rate of new cases, where it has been since early December 2020.

Lyme, however, has moved back into the Gray Zone — the zone which has the lowest rate of new cases — for the first time since Dec. 18, 2020.

As of the Feb. 12 report, Lyme now joins Bridgewater, Canaan, Cornwall, Colebrook, Norfolk, Scotland, Union and Warren  in the Gray Zone, while Deep River, Barkhamsted, Kent, Redding and Salisbury move into the Orange Zone –.

  • The gray category is defined as when the Average Daily Rate of COVID-19 Cases Among Persons Living in Community Settings per 100,000 Population By Town is less than five or less than five reported cases.
  • The orange category is defined as when the Average Daily Rate of COVID-19 Cases Among Persons Living in Community Settings per 100,000 Population By Town is between 10 and 14.
  • The red category is defined as when the Average Daily Rate of COVID-19 Cases Among Persons Living in Community Settings per 100,000 Population By Town exceeds 15.

In all cases, this rate does not include cases or tests among residents of nursing home, assisted living, or correctional facilities.

Three Fatalities in Old Lyme Since Pandemic Began, None in Lyme

According to the report mentioned above, there have now been THREE fatalities in Old Lyme. Asked Tuesday, Feb. 9, for details of this third fatality, Ledge Light Health Department Director of Health Stephen Mansfield responded, “We have not been notified of any recent deaths in Old Lyme. Keep in mind that that report is compiled by the Connecticut Department of Public Health; deaths are not reportable to local health districts.”

He added, “I can’t speak for their data sources.”

The two fatalities from Old Lyme previously reported in 2020 were a 61-year-old female and an 82-year-old male.

Lyme’s cumulative total stayed constant at 78 in Wednesday’s CT DPH report holding at Tuesday’s number. (Monday reports always include data for the previous Friday, Saturday and Sunday.)

More Detail on Two-Week Case Rates

On Thursday, Feb. 11, Ledge Light Health District (LLHD) also issued their latest two-week  report of COVID data for the municipalities within their District. Ledge Light Director of Health Stephen Mansfield prefaces the report with the comment, “We are encouraged to see a moderate decrease in cases for the 4th consecutive reporting period, and are hopeful that this trend will continue.”

The latest two-week case rate per 100,000 population announced Thursday, Feb. 11, has fallen in both Lyme and Old Lyme, which, in turn, reflects the fact that the number of cases has fallen in both towns over the two week-period.

The two-week case rate for the period 1/24 to 2/06 decreased (compared with the previous two-week case rate for 1/17 to 1/30)  as follows:

  • Lyme from 21.4 to 12.2
  • Old Lyme from 38.8 to 25.2.

The same report shows that the number of cases recorded for the period 1/24 to 2/06 also decreased (compared with the previous two-week case rate for 1/17 to 1/30 shown in parentheses) as follows:

  • Lyme had(5) cases in Week 1 and 2 (2) in Week 2
  • Old Lyme had 17 (23) cases in Week 1 and (17) in Week 2

This data was updated Feb. 11, 2021.

Old Lyme – No Change in Confirmed Cases

Old Lyme now has a cumulative total (since the outbreak began) of 265 confirmed COVID-19 cases and SEVEN probable cases, making a TOTAL of 272 cases.

This represents NO CHANGE in the cumulative number of confirmed or probable cases over the number reported Thursday, Feb. 11.

The total number of Old Lyme residents tested is 4,547, an increase of 11 over the previous day’s number of 4,536.

Lyme – No Change in Confirmed Cases 

Lyme now has a cumulative total (since the outbreak began) of 73 confirmed cases and SIX probable cases, making a TOTAL of 79 cases.

This represents NO CHANGE in the cumulative number of confirmed or probable cases over the number reported Thursday, Feb. 11.

There have been no fatalities in Lyme.

The total number of Lyme residents tested is 1,222, an increase of one over the previous day’s number of 1,221.

Connecticut Hospital Occupancy

At the request of several readers, we are adding a new report today showing the respective rates of hospital occupancy at local hospitals. The data for this report is obtained from the Connecticut Hospital Occupancy Report published weekly by the CT DPH and extracted from the United States Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) facility-level data for hospital utilization aggregated on a weekly basis (Friday to Thursday).

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Editor’s Note: The state issues a COVID-19 metric report daily around 4 p.m. Monday through Friday, which includes current data up to the previous evening. In light of the serious rise in Coronavirus cases, we publish a new weekday update reporting confirmed and probable COVID-19 cases in Lyme and Old Lyme. The next CT DPH Daily Data Report for Connecticut will be issued in the afternoon of Monday, Feb. 15.

Old Lyme Basketball Boys Defeat Portland 59-54 in Season Opener at Home, Girls Crush Portland 56-13 Away

OLD LYME — The official high school basketball season finally opened last night and Kirk Kaczor’s Old Lyme boys pulled off a thrilling 59-54 win at home against Portland, despite a dismal third quarter in which they were outscored 19-8.

In a game played with no fans due to the ongoing COVID-19 situation, Colbe Andrews made a significant contribution to the victory for the Wildcats taking an impressive 15 rebounds.

The boy’s next game is at home on Tuesday Feb. 16 at home, when the team face Westbrook.

Meanwhile on the same night, Don Bugbee’s Old Lyme girls playing away, also pulled off a victory against Portland, but with much less effort than the boys. The final score was 56-13 taking Old Lyme to 1-1 record. The girls were defeated by Coginchaug 41-22 on Tuesday.

After the game, Bugbee said, “After our Season opening game loss to Coginchaug on Feb 10, the Team regrouped and played very well versus Portland.” He added, “It was a solid team effort in every aspect on both the Offensive and Defensive ends of the floor.”

Senior Emma McCulloch scored 16 points, took 8 rebounds and made 2 blocks, while fellow senior Emily DeRoehn notched 12 points with 12 rebounds and 2 steals. The third senior on the team, Sam Gray, added 13 points and made 8 rebounds.

The JV team extended their record to 2-0 with wins over Coginchaug (37-29) and Portland (46-16.)

The girl’s next games ire both away on Tuesday Feb. 16, and at Hale Ray on Feb 18.

‘Tour de Lyme’ 2021 Planned for Sept. 5

The 2021 ‘Tour de Lyme’ will be held Sept. 5.

LYME — The Center for Disease Control and Prevention states that life will hopefully be getting back to a semblance of normalcy by the fall of 2021 and so the Lyme Land Trust has set the date for this year’s Tour de Lyme as Sunday, Sept. 5, during Labor Day Weekend.

The organizers say, “We want to host an event that is as fun as you remember with fantastic rides, food, music and friends!”

More information to follow as it becomes available.