By MauryThompson

Mayor Akins Appears at Village Green Open House

GLENS FALLS - Glens Falls Mayor Roy Akins left Glens Falls Hospital for a short time Thursday morning to attend an open house at the new Village Green Apartments.

Akins, who has been receiving cancer treatment for more than a year, has been hospitalized since Monday evening.

His unexpected appearance at the event surprised even the mayor's staff.

"First I was surprised," Mike Mender, an assistant to the mayor, said later on Thursday.

"And then, considering the mayor's determination, after I thought about it, I wasn't surprised."

During a ribbon-cutting ceremony before Akins arrived, developer Charles Allen was talking about the role Akins played in planning the project, and said he was sorry the mayor could not be present.

About 10 minutes later, Akins showed up with his family and began greeting people.

The new apartment building is across Hudson Avenue from the hospital.

Akins, who was in a wheelchair, said he didn't want to miss celebrating one of the major initiatives of his administration.

"It's been four years in the making. It's really an asset for the city," he said.

A Maine-based development group that Allen heads is in the process of replacing the former Henry Hudson Townhouses complex between Hudson Avenue and Broad Street with 136 new apartment units.

Allen said later Thursday he was surprised and pleased that the mayor attended.

"The mayor has said many times over the last few years that he was going to see to it that the residents of the old Henry Hudson get a better place to live, and it was great to have him be able to be there and see that is just what they're getting," he said.

Akins returned to the hospital Thursday afternoon and was expected to remain hospitalized at least overnight, Mender said.

Akins has been under treatment for cancer since doctors at a Boston hospital removed a tumor from his brain in April 2007.

He underwent colon surgery at Glens Falls Hospital on May 20.

The surgery was necessitated by a complication caused by medication he was taking as part of his cancer treatment, and was not directly related to the cancer, his family has said.

Akins was admitted Monday evening to Glens Falls Hospital for "an evaluation," Mender, the mayor's spokesman, has said.

Mender said Thursday that doctors continue to evaluate the mayor's condition on a "day-to-day" basis.