Local environmentalist Ward Stone dies
Ted Remsnyder reports in the Daily Gazette that Ward Stone, New York’s wildlife pathologist for over four decades, died Feb. 8 at Columbia Memorial Hospital in Hudson. Stone, 84, grew up in Columbia County and is survived by six children and his longtime partner Mary Bayhan. His daughter Montana Stone said, “There’s not many people who have been able to come from a one-room schoolhouse in Spencertown, New York to accomplish all that he did. From being a Navy corpsman in Vietnam to speaking at the United Nations and discovering diseases like West Nile.” Roger Downs, the conservation director of the Sierra Club Atlantic Chapter, said, “In his position as state wildlife pathologist, Ward Stone shone a light on environmental threats long before others could notice them and gave a science-based voice to nature in times of crisis when few other state officials would listen." Stone’s work with the DEC ended after a New York’s inspector general report in 2012 claimed that Stone used his workspace at the DEC’s Wildlife Resource Center in Delmar as his residence and also used the agency’s vehicles for personal use. Read the full story in the Daily Gazette.