Deputies said an attorney has been retained for Buck, who was arraigned at the hospital Sunday morning by Lambert, acting as a Middlefield town judge.
Buck is to appear in Otsego County Court at 9:30 a.m. Sept. 30.
If convicted on the murder charge, Buck faces up to 25 years in prison, deputies said.
Joseph Buck retired from teaching perhaps three or four years ago, but faculty kept in touch, according to Kenyon. He said the retired Buck looked well and happy when he attended a retirement party for another teacher in June.
Worcester Central School has about 385 students, Kenyon said, and probably about 35 of the 40 teachers worked with Buck.
“We’re like a family,” Kenyon said.
Buck was mild-mannered, considerate man with a dry sense of humor, Kenyon said, and he was a meticulous teacher with high standards who was well-regarded by colleagues and students alike.
“Teaching was his passion — he just loved the kids,” Kenyon said. “He just loved science — he just brought science to life for the kids.”
Otsego County District No. 7 Rep. Beth Rosenthal, whose constituent area includes Middlefield, said she wasn’t acquainted with the defendant or his father. Rosenthal said couldn’t recall a shooting incident in Middlefield but Saturday’s incident prompted recollections of a domestic murder-suicide in Franklin last year.
“You always have the feeling that this kind of thing doesn’t happen around here,” Rosenthal said. “ But it does, unfortunately.”