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744026

744026 It’s time for all things green Region gets ready for St. Patrick’s Day celebrations THE

It’s time for all things green

Region gets ready for St. Patrick’s Day celebrations

THE GUIDE, INSIDE

ready for St. Patrick’s Day celebrations THE GUIDE, INSIDE Mining for gold Five local wrestlers remain

Mining

for gold

Five local wrestlers remain in the hunt for state title

SPORTS, 1B

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WILKES-BARRE, PA

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FRIDAY, MARCH 9, 2012

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Meat filler gets OK for lunch program

Beef trimmings referred to as ‘pink slime’ safe to eat but nutrition questioned.

By MARK GUYDISH mguydish@timesleader.com

Coming (maybe) to a school lunch near you: beef trimmings – cartilage, connective tissue, stuff most people discard – ground up, treated with ammo- nia hydroxide and pressed into a pink paste used as meat filler. Is it safe? Yes, at least in modest amounts, one local dietician said. Is it avoidable? Well, sure. Don’t eat processed meat prod- ucts provided through the Na- tional School

Lunch Pro- gram. An epicu- rean fracas has erupted with news that the U.S. Department of Agricul- ture plans to buy 7 million pounds of what one for- mer USDA scientist dubbed “pink slime” and

use it in the federal program that provides free and reduced meals to stu- dents from low-income fam- ilies. According to one news ac- count, the official name for the stuff is “lean beef trimmings.” It starts with the kind of stuff the average butcher – and per- son – would toss in the trash. “For us, we’re a small oper- ation and it’s cost effective” to discard ligaments, cartilage and other parts of a meat cut considered inedible, said Ger- ald “John” Gerrity, co -owner of Jerry and Sons Market in Nan- ticoke. But large meat processing plants pile the stuff up by the barrel “and are always trying to look for a way to make more money.” So a company called Beef Products Inc. takes the trim- mings, grinds them up and treats it with ammonia “to kill pathogens,” said Geisinger Dietician Michael Kantar. “It can go into any meat or meat-based product – ground beef, ground pork – that can be

People con- tacted at the two food service firms providing cafeteria operations in most local school dis- tricts said they had not heard of “pink slime.”

See FILLER, Page 14A

MULTI-ORGAN TRANSPLANT SUCCESS

See FILLER, Page 14A MULTI-ORGAN TRANSPLANT SUCCESS AIMEE DILGER/THE TIMES LEADER Christian Stone, 10, looks at

AIMEE DILGER/THE TIMES LEADER

Christian Stone, 10, looks at photos of himself at 9 months with his brother, Blake Fisher. Christian was born with a bir th defect that required him to undergo transplant surgery.

Celebration times 2

Surgeries save Courtdale boy

By STEVEN FONDO Times Leader Correspondent

COURTDALE – Christian Stone is a

lucky kid; he gets to celebrate two birth- days every year. Christian was born on May 24 2001, but

on Thursday, he

celebrated his 10th “re-birth- day.” A re-birthday is

a term organ

transplant pa- tients use to de- scribe the anni- versary of their transplant sur- gery. Christian was born with a rare gastrointestinal

anomaly that left his young body unable to absorb, through his small intestine, the nutri- ents he needed to survive. Due to the serious nature of his birth defect and complications from extensive medical

“I know I’m going to play basketball again this year, but I’m not so sure about soc- cer.”

Christian Stone

Transplant recipient

sure about soc- cer.” Christian Stone Transplant recipient Jacob Stone, 16, Christian Stone, 10, Kelly Fisher,

Jacob Stone, 16, Christian Stone, 10, Kelly Fisher, Eric Fisher and Blake Fish- er, 23 months, look forward to celebrating Christian’s re-bir thday, which the family marks by the day he received a new liver, pancreas and small intestine.

treatment, he also needed a new liver and a pancreas. So, at 9 months old, Christian under- went a triple-organ transplant at the Children’s Hospital of Pittsburgh to re- place the three organs, all from an in- fant in Kentucky who had died.

“At the time, it was an unbelievably difficult and emotional decision for us as parents,” said Christian’s mother, Kelly Fisher. “As a mother, you do any- thing to help your child to live.

See TRANSPLANT, Page 14A

COUNTY BILLING

No funds for cases in 2012

Court official worries lawyers will withdraw from cases representing parents with children in Children & Youth custody.

By TERRIE MORGAN-BESECKER tmorgan@timesleader.com

A Luzerne County Court official said he’s con-

cerned attorneys representing parents whose

children are in the custody of Children and Youth Services may seek to withdraw from the cases be- cause no money was budgeted in 2012 to pay them.

Deputy Court Administra- tor Mike Shucosky said he has been seeking to discuss the funding issue with coun- ty officials, but everything has been in such a flux with the transition to home rule that no meetings have been held. That has left attorneys who were previously ap- pointed to represent parents

to continue their work, with no guarantee they will be paid.

“I think everyone is wait-

ing to see what will be worked out, but patience is going to run out,” Shucosky said. The funding crunch stems from the county ’s failure to include any money in the

2012 budget for the special le- gal services fund, which was set up last year to pay apool of 18 private attorneys who were retained to represent parents who face the possibility of hav- ing their rights to their children terminated. The county is obligated by the U.S. Constitu- tion to provide attorneys in parental termination cases. That representation used to be provided by the Public Defender’s Office, but it stopped ac- cepting those cases in 2010 due to a lack of man-

“There’s on- ly so long you can go without pay- ing your own bills. I don’t want to see parents go without rep- resentation,

but that’s what’s going to happen.”

Qiana Murphy

Lehman

Attorney

See FEES, Page 14A

Synthetic pot focus of raids

Various Lackawanna County locations are targeted.

businesses and two homes alleg-

gan the multi-jurisdictional effort

edly tied to the distribution of dubbed “Operation: Chemical

Reaction” at about 9:30 a.m. Te ams searched homes at 12 6 N. Bromley Ave., We st Sc ra nton, and 13 5 S. Wa shington St ., Ta y- lor. Businesses involved included

synthetic drugs in Northeastern Pennsylvania. Lackawanna County Deputy District Attorney Robert Klein and First Assistant District Attor- ney Gene Ta lerico sa id about 70 police officers and members of

day morning in raids on eight the District Attorney ’s Office be-

SCRANTON – Law enforce- ment agencies throughout Lacka- wanna County took part Thurs-

By CHRISTOPHER J. HUGHES chughes@golackawanna.com

See POT, Page 14A

S e e P O T , P a g e 1 4 A JASON RIEDMILLER/G

JASON RIEDMILLER/GOLACKAWANNA

Police seized synthetic marijuana, guns, vehi- cles and thousands of dollars in cash in a raid on synthetic drug retail- ers in Lack- awanna County.

a raid on synthetic drug retail- ers in Lack- awanna County. DON CA RE Y/ THE

DON CAREY/THE TIMES LEADER

Tony Ross of the United Way of Pennsylvania speaks at a town hall state budget meeting on planned cuts.

United Way town hall takes on Pa. budget cuts

Gov.’s proposed reductions hit as putting the squeeze on those most in need.

ing. In a town hall meeting orga- nized by the United Way of Penn- sylvania and held at the Burke Auditorium on the King ’s Col- lege campus, officials from Ca- tholic Social Services, Commis- sion on Economic Opportunity, Luzerne County Human Servic- es and Child Development Council of NEPA discussed the growing number of clients they’ve seen come through their

See UNITED, Page 14A

By ANDREW M. SEDER aseder@timesleader.com

WILKES-BARRE – Dozens of representatives from local social service agencies gathered Thurs- day to hear how cuts to human services in Gov. Tom Corbett’s

proposed 2012-13 state budget doors.

would affect their agencies and those they’re tasked with serv-

WEATHER

Malcolm Yaple Much colder, flurries. Details, Page 8B

Malcolm Yaple Much colder, flurries. Details, Page 8B INSIDE A NEWS: Local 3A Nation & World

INSIDE

A NEWS: Local 3A Nation & World 5A Obituaries 2A, 10A Birthdays 12A Editorials 13A

B SPORTS: Scoreboard 2B Business 7B

C CLASSIFIED: Funnies 16C

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Television

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PAGE 2A FRIDAY, MARCH 9, 2012

 

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Della B. Christian

March 8, 2012

D ella B. Christian, age 100, of the Rocky Glen section of Moosic, died Thursday morning at Golden Care Living Center, East Mountain, in Wilkes Barre. Born in Pittsburgh on April 4, 1911, Della graduated from the for- mer West Pittston High Sc hool, Class of 1929, before working as a stenographer and a seamstress, pri- or to her retirement. A member of the Moosic Assembly of God.

A former Den Mother who was a

member of the Pittston Senior Citi- zens, her favorite pastimes were sewing, crocheting, knitting clothes and collecting angels. A loving mother, relative and friend, she will be dearly missed. She is survived by her two sons, Blaine Christian of Moosic and Law- rence Christian and wife Sandra of

West Pittston; eight grandchildren; sionary Alliance in We st Pittston.

Interment will follow in Mount Zion Cemetery. Public viewing will be Sunday between 2 to 5 p.m. at the

19 59. Daughters, Lorel ei We aver funeral home.

and 19 great-grandchildren. She was preceded in death by her husband, Lawrence P. Christian, in

for Monday at 11 a.m. in the Thomas P. Kearney Funeral Home Inc., 517 North Main Street, Old Forge, to be conducted by the Rev. Donald Strope, pastor of the Christian Mis-

by the Rev. Donald Strope, pastor of the Christian Mis- and Eva Richards; a brother, Wil-

and Eva Richards; a brother, Wil- liam Sites; and a sister, Martha Clancey, also preceded her in death. Her family would like to thank both Hospice and the staff of Gold- en Care Living Center for the excel- lent care they gave Della. Funeral services are scheduled

In lieu of flowers, memorial con- tributions may be made in Della’s name to Griffin Pond Animal Shel- ter, 967 Griffin Pond Road, Clarks Summit, PA 18411. Please visit www.KearneyFuner- alHome.com for directions or to leave an online condolence.

Bruno B. Bernardi

March 4, 2012

B runo Bernardi, age 91, of Palm Beach Gardens, passed away

peacefully on March 4, 2012. Bruno was born on January 2, 1921, in Pittston, to parents Benja- min and Philomenia Bernardi. Bruno was predeceased by his wife, Mary, brothers Raymond and Bernard; sister Florence Solo; mother/aunt; Mary Bernardi. His memory will be cherished by his daughters, Gloria Justine ( Jer- ry), Mary Lou Root (Harold); grandsons, Randy Root, Matthew Justine and Brian Justine; sister Jean DePietro of West Pittston; brother Robert Bernardi (Char- lotte) of Exeter; many nieces and nephews. Friends may visit the family at the Howard-Price Funeral Home, 754 US Hwy. 1, North Palm Beach, Fla., today from 7 to 9 p.m. A Mass of Christian Burial will be held at St

Clare Catholic Church, 821 Prosper-

will be held at St Clare Catholic Church, 821 Prosper- ity Farms Road, North Palm Beach,

ity Farms Road, North Palm Beach, Fla., on Saturday, March 10, 2012 at 11 a.m. Interment to follow at Royal Palm Memorial Gardens. Donations may be made to The Hospice of Palm Beach County or St. Jude Children’s Research Hospi- tal.

Theresa A. Minella

March 8, 2012

T heresa A. Minella, 91, of Old Forge, died Thursday at Moun-

tain View Care Center, Scranton. Born in Old Forge, she was the daughter of the late Antonio and Maria Carbone Minella. She was a graduate of Old Forge High School. She was a member of the Prince of Peace Parish-St. Mary ’s Church, Old Forge. The family gives special thanks to the staff at the Mountain View Care Center for the compassionate care given to Theresa. Surviving are two brothers, John J., Plains Township; Tito, Old Forge; nieces and nephews, Carl Galletti, Jeanie Ventre, Robert Galletti; An- thony, Maria, John P. and Paul A. Minella. She was preceded in death by four sisters, Mary and Adeline Mi- nella, Angeline Galletti, Rosina Pan- cotti; a brother, Sandy Minella; a ne- phew, Mark Minella, and niece Ma- ry Ann Rohland.

a ne- phew, Mark Minella, and niece Ma- ry Ann Rohland. The funeral will be Monday

The funeral will be Monday at 9:30 a.m. from the Louis V. Ciuccio Funeral Home, 145 Moosic Road, Old Forge, followed by a 10 Mass at the Prince of Peace Parish-St. Ma- ry ’s Church, W. Grace and Lawrence streets, Old Forge. Interment in Old Forge Cemetery. Friends may call Sunday 5 to 7 p.m.

Chauncey Alcott Rowlands

March 6, 2012

C hauncey Alcott Rowlands of Wa- namie passed away on Tuesday,

March 6, 2012, in the Department of Veterans Affairs Medical Center in Plains Township. He was born on December 17, 1920, in Plymouth, to Elizabeth Stubblebine Rowlands and Haley Rowlands. He was a graduate of Ply- mouth High School. Chauncey was an U.S. Army vet- eran of World War II and served in Okinawa. He was employed as a machinist of Vulcan Iron Works in Wilkes- Barre. He was a member of the First Christian Church in Plymouth,

where he was a deacon and an active member. He was married to Pauline Ma- kowski, whom he called “Polly O.” They were married for 59 years.

In addition to his parents, Chaun-

cey was preceded in death by his wife, Pauline; and daughter Joyce Federici; siblings, William, Tho- mas, Clarence, Howard, Daniel, An- na and Elizabeth. Surviving are his children Debo-

rah Ginocchietti and her husband, or the Luzerne County SPCA in

Anthony, Wanamie, and Thomas Plains Township.

Williams-Hagen Funeral Home, 114 W. Main St., Plymouth, with the Rev. David Quisenberry officiating. Friends may call from 9 a.m. until time of service. Memorial donations can be made to the Christian Church, Plymouth,

donations can be made to the Christian Church, Plymouth, Rowlands, Wanamie. He has four grandchildren, Scott

Rowlands, Wanamie. He has four grandchildren, Scott Federici, Tra- cey Federici Prince, Leslie Ginoc- chietti, and Ryan Ginocchietti. He also has six great-grandchildren. A funeral service will be held on Saturday at noon in the

A funeral service will be held on Saturday at noon in the More Obituaries, Page 10A

More Obituaries, Page 10A

Police search for shooter

Man wounded on South Fulton Street. Injuries are described as non-life threatening.

Street. Injuries are described as non-life threatening. AIMEE DILGER/THE TIMES LEADER Wilkes-Barre police

AIMEE DILGER/THE TIMES LEADER

Wilkes-Barre police investigate the site of a shooting that oc- curred around 7:30 p.m. Thursday on South Fulton Street.

She immediately called Lu-

Police were searching the area around the storm drain for evi- dence and other officers were searching an area on Logan

The neighbor said police ar- Street for the suspect.

The neighbor said police told her the victim was a 28-year-old man from Logan Street.

By STEVE MOCARSKY smocarsky@timesleader.com

WILKES-BARRE – Police on Thursday night were searching for the gunman who shot anoth- er man on South Fulton Street. The victim, whose name was not available, was taken to a lo- cal hospital for treatment of non- life threatening injuries, police said. A neighbor said she heard a bang that sounded like a fire- cracker, and when she went out- side, she found a man lying in the street near a storm drain be-

tween 37 S. Fulton St. and a zerne County 911.

A 911 supervisor said the call was received at 7:37 p.m.

four-stall garage next to it. The neighbor, who asked not to be identified, asked if the man

was all right, and she said he rived “really fast.” The victim

responded, “Yeah, I was shot. I was shot.”

was taken to a hospital by ambu- lance.

Ex-LCCF nursing supervisor admits drug offense

Pleads guilty to acquiring or obtaining possession of controlled substance.

acquiring or obtaining possession of controlled substance. W a r m a n pharmacies in prison

Warman

pharmacies in

prison workers charged in March

the names of in- mates. He

2011 after a 13-month investiga- tion into drug activity at the pris-

would then on.

give the drugs to prison em- ployees and corrections offi- cers.

On Wednesday, guard Chris- topher Walsh was acquitted on a charge of providing cocaine to a fellow guard. Another guard, Jason Fierman,

“Are you admitting you did is scheduled to stand trial on

charges he provided drugs to in- mates and other guards in June. John Carey had pleaded guilty and was sentenced in January to 18 months probation on charges he purchased drugs from a fellow guard. Warman, who was terminated from his prison job after the in- vestigation, testified before a grand jury in 2009 about how he obtained the drugs and then dis- pensed them to prison workers. Warman said he never consult- ed with the prison physician be- fore obtaining medications for himself, and no system was in place at the prison infirmary to track prescriptions. As a result, court papers say, Warman was able to get prescrip- tions from different pharmacies without having to worry about anyone auditing his invoices. Warman testified he gave about 30 to 60 tablets per month of the anxiety medicine Xanax to former deputy warden Sam Hyd- er. Hyder was not charged in the investigation, and his attorney, Peter Moses, had previously de- nied the allegations.

By SHEENA DELAZIO sdelazio@timesleader.com

WILKES-BARRE – A former county prison nursing supervisor charged with providing prescrip-

tion drugs to guards and other man.

workers pleaded guilty Thursday to a related charge. Kevin Warman, 51, of Edwards- ville, entered the plea before Lu- zerne County Judge David Lupas to one felony count of acquiring or obtaining possession of a con- trolled substance. Deputy Attorney General Tim Doherty said that between Janu- ary 2007 and July 2009, Warman obtained Vicodin and Xanax from

those things?” Lupas asked War-

“Yes, I did,” Warman said. Warman faces a sentence of probation to up to nine months in prison and will be sentenced on May 11. Defense attorney Thomas Cometa said his client will be ap- plying to the county ’s Intermedi- ate Punishment Program, a type of probationary sentence that can include house arrest. Warman was one of several

Leonard T. (Curly) Bowditch

March 7, 2012

L eonard T. (Curly) Bowditch, 91, formerly of Center Street, Ha-

nover Section of Nanticoke, passed away We dnesday at the Ve terans Af- fairs Medical Center, Plains Town- ship. Born on Feb. 7, 1921, in Swansea, Wales, he was the son of the late Thomas and Olwen Williams Bow- ditch. He was a graduate of Nanticoke High School, Class of 1939. Mr. Bowditch served as a sergeant in the U.S. Army in the European Theater of Operations during World War II and was awarded the Purple Heart and the European Campaign Medal with three Bronze Stars. He had been employed in the maintenance department at Wilkes College, and prior to his retirement, was an inspector for Owens Illinois Corp. He was a member of St. Fausti-

na’s Parish, Nanticoke; American ship.

Legion Post 350, Nanticoke; the

Disabled American Veterans; the p.m.

Veterans of Foreign Wars and the Purple Heart Association. He was preceded in death by his wife, the former Dorothy Novachek, on Oct. 21, 2007, and sister Irene Wilcox. Surviving are son, Thomas F. Bowditch, and his wife, Mary Lee; daughter, Donna Granoski; sister Winifred (Winnie) Wascko; grand- children, Fred, Shawn, Michelle and Thomas W.; three great-grandchil- dren; nieces and nephews. Funeral services will be held Saturday at 10:30 a.m. from the Stanley S. Stegura Funeral Home Inc., 614 S. Hanover St., Nan- ticoke, with a Mass of Christian Burial at 11 a.m. in the main site of St. Faustina’s Parish (Holy Trinity Church), 520 S. Hanover St., Nanti- coke. Final interment will be in Holy Trinity Cemetery, Newport Town-

interment will be in Holy Trinity Cemetery, Newport Town- Friends may call today from 5 to

Friends may call today from 5 to 7

Loralu Richards

March 5, 2012

L oralu Richards entered into eter- nal rest on Monday, March 5,

2012, in North Miami Beach, Flor- ida, where she made her home. She was born on August 26, 1935, in Warrior Run and spent most of her youth in Askam. She was the daughter of the late Warren and Ma- ry Murray Richards. She was a grad- uate of Hanover Area High School and Wyoming Valley Hospital, where she earned a diploma as a reg- istered nurse. She continued to pur-

sue her nursing studies, earning a Bachelor of Science in Nursing Edu- cation from Wilkes College in 1960. With total commitment and dedi- cation she devoted her entire career to that profession, and her patients. Family and close friends, who knew Lulu, loved her warm personality, beautiful smile and her ability to make them feel special. She was a supportive and encouraging anchor to those in need. She embraced nu- merous hobbies with a passion; gar-

flowers, crafts, collector,

dening,

reading, remodeling and conversa- tion were all part of the person that

she was. Loralu was a member of the Ply- mouth Chapter of the Order of East- ern Star. She is survived by her sister, Jen- nie Eder of Upper Askam, and long- time friend and caregiver Ruth Ed- wards; nieces, Lynn Glushefski, Nanticoke; Michelle Walters, Nanti- coke; Lori Earley, Wilkes-Barre; three great-nieces; four great-neph- ews; four great-great-nieces and great-great-nephews, and her be- loved pets, Annie and Daisy, as well as numerous extended family and friends who dearly loved and will sadly miss her. A Christian service will be held for her at the Hanover Green Ceme- tery Chapel at the convenience of the family with the Rev. Barbara Saxx officiating. Memorial contributions may be made to the Askam United Metho- dist Church, the Asthmatic Founda- tion, or the American Lung Associ- ation. Arrangements are by Yeosock Funeral Home, Plains.

City hires transit head, police chief

By TOM HUNTINGTON Times Leader Correspondent

HAZLETON – Steve Hahn, who lost a $50,000-a-year job as manager of Butler Township be- fore Maryanne Petrilla was ap- pointed to his post in January, wound up Thursday with anoth- er $50,000-a-year post. Hazleton City Council voted unanimously to hire him as director of public transit for the city. Council also unanimously con- firmed Frank V. DeAndrea Jr. of Hazleton as police chief. DeAndrea is a 1982 graduate of Hazleton Area High School, a res- ident of the city for more than 40 years and a member of the state police for 23 years, including a stint as the commander of the Po- cono Downs Gaming Enforce- ment Office. DeAndrea said there is a need to sit down with the members of units as well as city officials “to find what is going right and what is going wrong, and work to cor- rect prevailing problems.”DeAn- drea is scheduled to assume com- mand today. Mayor Jo e Ya nnuzzi said DeAndrea’s salary will be “around $65,000.” Ya nnuzzi also estimated that Hahn will be paid

$50,000.

PRASHANT SHITUT President & CEO (570) 970-7158

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President & CEO (570) 970-7158 pshitut@timesleader.com An JOE BUTKIEWICZ VP/Executive Editor (570) 829-7249

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DENISE SELLERS VP/Chief Revenue Officer (570) 970-7203

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DETAILS

LOTTERY

MIDDAY DRAWING DAILY NUMBER 9-9-8 BIG FOUR 5-6-5-1 QUINTO 1-6-1-8-3 TREASURE HUNT

03-08-18-22-25

NIGHTLY DRAWING DAILY NUMBER 8-4-7 BIG FOUR 8-4-3-8 QUINTO 1-2-6-3-7 CASH FIVE

04-21-31-33-43

MATCH SIX

07-29-35-44-46-49

HARRISBURG – No player matched all five winning numbers drawn in Thurs- day’s “Pennsylvania Cash 5” game so the jackpot will be worth $500,000. Lottery officials said 78 players matched four num- bers and won $310.50 each and 3,285 players matched three numbers and won $12.50 each. Monday’s “Pennsylvania Match 6 Lotto” jackpot will be worth at least $850,000 because no player holds a ticket with one row that matches all six winning numbers drawn in Thurs- day’s game.

OBITUARIES

Bernardi, Bruno Biggers, Jack Bowditch, Leonard Christian, Della Futch, William Hogan, Robert Sr. Innes, Donn Kaminski, Gregory Marshall, Christine Massaker, Robert Minella, Theresa Rackley, Jeremy Richards, Loralu Rowlands, Chauncey Schappert, Catherine Stebbins, Paul Jr. Vilchock, Michael

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The Times Leader strives to correct errors, clarify stories and update them promptly. Corrections will appear in this spot. If you have information to help us correct an inaccu- racy or cover an issue more thoroughly, call the newsroom at 829-7242.

A CLARIFICAT ION NEEDS to be made in a story that ran on Page 7A Thursday regard- ing a county prison guard acquitted of drug-related charges. The story should have said Christopher Walsh’s attorney, Michael Butera, asked for a verdict of acquittal on a criminal conspiracy charge that was granted by a judge.

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FRIDAY, MARCH 9, 2012 PAGE 3A

LOCAL

I N

BRIEF

WILKES-BARRE

Hearing before Stoss trial

Attorneys involved in the case of a Pittston Township man charged in the March 2011 death of 48-year-o ld Lillian Calabro met Thursday for the last hearing before a trial begins Monday morning.

First Assistant District Attorney Samuel Sanguedolce, Assistant District Attorney Frank McCabe and Arthur Stoss’ attorney, Ally- son Kacmarski, ap- peared before Judge

attorney, Ally- son Kacmarski, ap- peared before Judge Stoss William Amesbury to discuss any final details

Stoss

William Amesbury to discuss any final details of the case. Amesbury said he will make any decisions on last-minute requests Monday morning before jury selection begins.

WILKES-BARRE

Wilkes students’ tasty PR

Zebra Communications, the student- run PR agency from Wilkes University, will be selling hot chocolate and coo- kies inside the South Main Street entrance of Boscov’s on Sunday during the Wilkes-Barre St. Patty’s Day Pa- rade. Hot chocolate will be sold for $1 and cookies for 50 cents, with all proceeds benefiting the Wyoming Valley chap- ter of Relay for Life and the American Cancer Society. Comic Book Superhero Wolverine will also be present for pictures and autographs with X-Men fans.

LUZERNE COUNTY

Fueling up for PSSAs

To help prevent students from tak- ing their Pennsylvania System of School Assessment tests (PSSA) on an empty stomach, 20 area McDonald’s Restaurants will serve a free breakfast Monday. The free breakfast consists of an Egg McMuffin, Apple Slices, and a small orange juice or 1 percent milk. Restaurants in Wilkes-Barre, Pitt- ston, Mountain Top, Plains, Edwards- ville, White Haven and Luzerne are among those participating on Monday from 6 to 8:30 a.m. The offer is good in store only and the student must be present. Students under age 16 must be accompanied by a parent or guardian. The tests are taken by students in grades three through eight and those in grade 11.

WILKES-BARRE

Flea market spaces ready

The Salvation Army has space avail- able for vendors at its eighth annual Silent Auction and Flea Market in April. Flea market tables are available for $10. Those who are in- terested should se- cure their table with their non-refundable payment by March 30. The flea market and auction will run 8 a.m. to 2 p.m. April 14 at the Wilkes-Barre Corps, 17 S. Pennsylva- nia Ave. For more information, call 824-8741.and those in grade 11. WILKES-BARRE Flea market spaces ready LUZERNE COUTNY USPS passport fairs set

LUZERNE COUTNY

USPS passport fairs set

Area post offices will host a pass- port fair to expedite the process of getting or renewing a U.S. passport on Saturday. Passport applications will be proc- essed at the main post office window, rather than at a special passport win- dow during passport fair hours. The special service will be available at the Wilkes-Barre Post Office be- tween 8:30 a.m. and 1 p.m., the Nanti- coke Post Office between 10 a.m. and noon and the Dallas Post office be- tween 8:15 a.m. and noon. The pass- port fair at the Hazleton Post Office has been cancelled. Passport applicants should bring proof of American citizenship or nat- uralization: either a government-is- sued birth certificate, previous pass- port or naturalization certificate, as well as a state or government photo ID card and a recently-taken passport- sized photo. The Dallas, Nanticoke and Wilkes-Barre post offices can take the photo for a fee. The charge for a new or renewed passport is $135 for adults and $105 for children under 16. Passport proc- essing and delivery usually takes six to eight weeks. Expedited service is available for an additional $60.

TRIPLE-A BALL

Lackawanna County concerned about 2013 season

Wansacz: Nickname OK

By SHEENA DELAZIO sdelazio@timesleader.com

Lackawanna County Commissioner Jim Wans acz said Thursday he and fel- low Commissioner Corey O’Brien aren’t concerned about a nickname change for the Scranton/Wilkes-Barre Yankees. “It’s not a name change, it’s a nick- name change,” Wansacz said. “There’s a lot of confusion. (The team) cannot change its name without our approval.” Now the commissioners are focused on making sure there will be baseball in Northeastern Pennsylvania in 2013. “Right now, we don’t have a deal on the table” with the Ya nkees, Wa ns acz said Thursday. “Will there be baseball in 2013, that’s what we’re concerned about.” Franchises sign player development contracts with parent companies, in this case the New York Yankees, for ei-

parent companies, in this case the New York Yankees, for ei- “It’s not a name change,

“It’s not a name change, it’s a nickname change. There’s a lot of confusion. (The team) cannot change its name without our approval.”

Jim Wansacz Lackawanna County Commissioner

ther two or four years. The Scranton/ Wilkes-B arre Yankees are at the end of its player development contract this year, and there is a possibility the team might not play in the area.

Ba rre Ya nkees aren’t sold, the area is still guaranteed to have a Triple -A fran- chise. A c urrent agreement with the Ya n- kees stipulated the team will lease the stadium for at least 30 Triple -A base- ball seasons, two possible 10-year lease renewal options, and pay annual rent to the authority for $750,000.

On Wednesday when International League officials announced the Tri- ple -A Ya nkees wo uld be called the Em- pire State Yankees while they call a Rochester, N.Y., field home for the 2012

As long as the Scranton/Wilkes- playing season while their Moosic

home undergoes renovations. Lackawanna County signed a con- struction contract with EwingCole in August 2011 for improvements to the 22-year-old stadium, formerly known as Lackawanna County Stadium, worth $28.7 million.

See YANKEES, Page 4A

LANDMARK SHICKSHINNY BANK RAZED

See YANKEES, Page 4A LANDMARK SHICKSHINNY BANK RAZED FRED ADAMS/FOR THE TIMES LEADER D emolition crews

FRED ADAMS/FOR THE TIMES LEADER

D emolition crews from Penn Earthworks, Hazleton, tear down the old bank that has stood on Shick- shinny’s central corner for more than 100 years. Built in the first decade of the 20th century for the

First National Bank of Shickshinny, the proper ty was most recently owned by Wells Fargo, which decided to replace the bank with an ATM, parking and green space after engineers found structural damages from several floods, including last September ’s. Borough officials pleaded for Wells Fargo to sell or other- wise convey the historic building to the borough, but Wells Fargo said it would not convey ownership of an unsafe building. First Keystone Community Bank announced last month that it will open a new bank at the closed Hasay Chevrolet auto dealership in the borough.

Bakery site sold for pharmacy

Owner of Harrold’s Pharmacy successful bidder for former site of Old River Road Bakery.

By BILL O’BOYLE boboyle@timesleader.com

WILKES-BARRE – City Council vot- ed 4-0 Thursday to sell the former Old River Road Bakery building to the owner of Harrold’s Pharmacy. Council Chairman Mike Merritt and council members Tony George, Mau- reen Lavelle and George Brown voted to award the bid to Bruce Lefkowitz. Council Vice Chairman Bill Barrett was absent.

Lefkowitz. Council Vice Chairman Bill Ba rrett was absent. BILL O’BOY LE/THE TIMES LEADER An architect’s

BILL O’BOYLE/THE TIMES LEADER

An architect’s ren- dering of a new Harrold’s Pharmacy planned for the site of the former Old River Road Bakery. Harrold’s owner Bruce Lefkowitz submitted the lower of two bids for the property.

Lefkowitz waited in the audience as

council decided that his bid – the lower

of two submitted – was the best option

for the city. The two bids were: Lefkowitz, doing business as 250 Old River Road Proper-

ties LLC, $50,000; and Darren Stucker, doing business as Beekman Street Properties LLC, at $52,000. Stucker did not attend the council meeting and

See BAKERY, Page 4A

Police: One charged after marijuana, contraband found

er, small plastic bags, rolling papers marijuana and contraband, according

and a glass water bong, police said. Baxter told police it was marijuana he “may have smoked sometime to-

In an unrelated case, Abualburak is

DALLAS TWP. – Township police investigating a suspicious vehicle out- side a medical office uncovered mari- juana and contraband used to package the drug, according to charges filed. Police alleged they found Carl James Baxter, 18, of Mapleseed Drive, Dallas, and Ali Abualburak, 19, of Mount Ol- ivet Road, Kingston Township, in a Mazda outside Geisinger Medical Cen-

ter on Lt. Michael Cleary Drive on possession of drug paraphernalia, and deliver illegal drugs in Abualburak’s

a single count of criminal use of com-

A preliminary hearing for Baxter is

scheduled on March 15 before District

Abualburak was not charged be- Judge James Tupper in Kingston

munication facility. He was released on $50,000 unsecured bail.

Wilkes-Barre Central Court on three counts of possession of a controlled substance, two counts each with pos- session of a controlled substance and

His trial is scheduled in May. Authorities alleged they found $6,000 in cash, a pound of marijuana and contraband to weigh, package and

By EDWARD LEWIS elewis@timesleader.com

to the criminal complaint.

scheduled for trial in Luzerne County

day,” according to the criminal com- Court on charges he was trafficking plaint. Police further alleged Baxter marijuana from his Kingston Town-

sold marijuana in Dallas on Feb. 27.

ship house in December 2010, court re-

He was arraigned Thursday in cords say.

house.

cause Baxter took ownership of the Township.

We dnesday. An officer detected an odor of mari- juana coming from the vehicle. A search of the vehicle revealed two bags of marijuana, a scale and a grind-

LCCC FINANCES

Conviction of Moses upheld by Pa. court

Former dean was convicted in theft of $17,000, laptop computers from the community college.

By SHEENA DELAZIO sdelazio@timesleader.com

WILKES-BARRE – The state Superior

Court recently upheld the conviction of a former Luzerne County Community Col- lege dean who was convicted of stealing more than $17,000 and two laptops from the school. Peter Moses will remain free on bail while his attorney asks the state Supreme Court to hear his case, his attorney said Thursday. Moses, 60, of Wilkes-Barre, was convict- ed in July 2010 by a Luzerne County jury and later sentenced to

four to 23 months in county prison. Moses has remained free on $10,000 bail while his case was on ap- peal to the state Superi- or Court. Moses’ attor-

ney, William Ruzzo, said Moses Thursday he will file pa- perwork with the state Supreme Court ask- ing the court to hear his client’s case. “Then, he will be protected. (His case will) still be on direct appeal,” Ruzzo said.

“His bail is in effect. We’ll see what the Su- preme Court has to say.” Assistant District Attorney Shannon Crake, who prosecuted Moses, said the Su- perior Court’s ruling clears the way for Moses to serve his sentence.

“I will be writing a letter to the judge ask-

ing for a hearing date, at which time I’ll ask the judge to give Moses a report (to prison) date,” Crake said. Crake said Moses can petition the Su- preme Court, but it can decline to hear an- other appeal. “It will be up to (Senior Judge Kenneth Brown) to decide whether or not to let (Moses out on bail) pending appeal,” Crake said. Moses appealed his prison sentence to the state Superior Court in January 2011, alleging the judge who presided over his ju- ry trial, Brown, made erroneous rulings.

In additional court papers, Ruzzo said he

was seeking a new trial, arguing Brown im- properly permitted two witnesses to testi- fy they saw Moses take money from a cafe- teria cash register. Ruzzo had also challenged a ruling that

allowed prosecutors to tell jurors that Mos- es had filed for bankruptcy during the time frame the thefts occurred.

In the appeal, Ruzzo argued testimony

regarding the register thefts should not have been permitted because Moses was not specifically charged with stealing mon- ey from the registers. Rather, he was charged with failing to deposit money that came in to the school’s cafeteria. Regarding the bankruptcy, Ruzzo ar- gued that information was irrelevant and could prejudice the jury because of the stig- ma attached to bankruptcy.

the jury because of the stig- ma attached to bankruptcy. DA will assist LCCC probe Times

DA will assist LCCC probe

Times Leader staff

The Luzerne County District At- torney ’s Office has become involved in an investigation of missing funds at Luzerne County Community College. District Attorney Stefanie Salavantis said Thursday that after meeting with Detective Capt. William Shultz of the Nanticoke Police Department, her office will assist in an investigation. “There isn’t much more that can be (said) besides that the DA’s Office is involved with the Nanticoke Police Department,” Salavantis said. “More investigation has to be done before anything can come of it.” Salavantis said she cannot say how much money may be missing from the school’s Public Safety Training In-

stitute or if there is a person of interest.

A financial audit at the Nanticoke

college recently revealed a discrepancy in one of the school’s accounts. College officials asked its business consultants to assist in looking into the discrepancy. In an e-mail, a college

spokesperson said that after college officials reviewed information from the business consultants it was turned over

to the Nanticoke Police Department.

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PAGE 4A FRIDAY, MARCH 9, 2012

NEWS

THE TIMES LEADER www.timesleader.com

Pa. House GOP leader sees redistricting vote

The Associated Press

HARRISBURG — A vote on new legislative maps in Pennsylvania could be voted on next week, if the Republican floor leader of the state House of Representatives gets his way. Majority Leader Mike Turzai of Allegheny County on Thursday released copies of a letter he sent to the chairman of the Legislative Reappor- tionment Commission suggesting that the panel vo te on a prel iminary plan next We dnesday. Turzai noted the state Supreme Court, which rejected the last set of maps, asked the commis- sion 33 days ago to move quickly, and said he was ready to vote. He declined to go into specifics about his own proposal, saying he had agreed to keep negotia- tions private. The state Supreme Court in January threw out the commission’s first set of maps, saying it didn’t meet constitutional standards for minimizing municipal splits and having compact boundaries. Turzai said there has been “significant move- ment” in the House talks, but facing a looming deadline will further spur them. Republicans had hoped to have new maps in place for the April 24 primary election, but it ap- pears those contests will be held based on the 2001 maps. Republicans hold comfortable majorities in both chambers.

GETTING MAD FOR SOME MUD

majorities in both chambers. GETTING MAD FOR SOME MUD CLARK VA N ORDEN/THE TIMES LEADER N

CLARK VAN ORDEN/THE TIMES LEADER

N ow that’s turtle power. The Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtle truck sits ready for a practice run over the dir t ramps under construction Thursday inside the Mohegan Sun Arena in Wilkes-Barre Township. Crews filled the arena with 100 truckloads of dirt in preparation for the Advance Auto Parts Monster Jam this weekend. The event will feature four shows at 7:30 tonight, 2 p.m. and 7:30 p.m. Saturday and 2 p.m. Sunday.

BAKERY

Continued from Page 3A

his bid was not made available for public inspection. Lefkowitz plans to move his family ’s 65-year-old business down the street to the site of the former bakery. The decision topped the meet- ing that once again featured spar- ring between members of the public and council. George re- quested the resolution appoint- ing former city human resources director Christine Jensen to the planning commission be voted on separately. George said Jensen was a good HR director, but someone from the business com- munity with a background in planning might be a better choice. Council voted on Jensen’s ap- pointment and it was approved

WHAT’S NEXT

City Council will hold a work ses- sion March 27 at 6 p.m. and its next regular meeting March 29 at 6 p.m. in council chambers, fourth floor, City Hall.

4-0, but George asked for a re- vote because he misunderstood the motion. He said he thought he was voting on taking the Jen- sen appointment off the consent agenda. Merritt obliged George and on the re-vote, Lavelle joined George in voting against Jensen. Merritt and Brown voted for her. But the controversy arose when Linda Urban spoke up and said the motion was misunder- stood. Merritt asked Urban to re- frain from addressing council from “beyond the rail.” When she again tried to get council to lis- ten, Merritt pounded the gavel to silence her. That got Bob Kadlu- boski to speak out and challenge

council’s behavior. Merritt again wielded the gavel and ordered a city police officer to remove Ur- ban and Kadluboski. That set off a firestorm of pub- lic comments, including from Frank Sorick, president of the Wi lkes-B arre City Ta xpaye rs ’ As- sociation, who said he would con- tact the ACLU to report council’s action. Urban at first refused to leave. “I’m not leaving,” she said. “I didn’t do anything wrong. I’m an American citizen – I have rights.” Reluctantly, Urban and Kadlu- boski left council chambers. Ka- dluboski could be heard in the hallway chanting, “Russia, Rus- sia, Russia.” Merritt told them as they left the meeting, “You were warned.” After the meeting, Merritt said there are rules for council meet- ings and decorum must prevail. He declined to answer more

“This council is playing around with people’s civil rights. I don’t like what they just did to me.”

Linda Urban

City resident

questions, leaving the council

million – to complete the project.

chambers and racing down the The city originally intended to

steps before he could be asked sell the building for $38,000 to

Leo A. Glodzik, owner of LAG Towing – the city ’s towing con- tractor – but that deal was termi- nated during the summer. Tyler Hammond, who has filed a lawsuit against the city regard- ing the former bakery, asked council at its January meeting why a portion of the property can’t be sold separately. Ham- mond did not submit a bid. But George requested that Lef- kowitz contact the Hammonds to see if a deal can be reached on the slice of property that the Ham- monds used to plant a garden. “It’s just a suggestion,” George said.

more questions. “This council is playing around with people’s civil rights,” Urban said. “I don’t like what they just did to me.” Urban and Sorick said the pub- lic has a right to challenge and question its elected officials. “Instead, I was treated like I’m some type of a criminal,” Urban said. Sorick then asked, “Why would (council) appoint a human resources person to the planning commission?” On the bakery development, Lefkowitz said he has secured the necessary financing – about $3.8

YANKEES

Continued from Page 3A

The franchise would need the approval of county com- missioners and the Lackawan- na County Stadium Authority board to change the actual name. The nickname change Wednesday will benefit the New York area, Wans acz said, which is a marketing approach to making the team favorable

to the area in which the team is playing. When the 2012 season is over, Wans acz said the nick- name will be dropped. Frank Tunis, solicitor of the stadium au-

thority, and

Jim Timlin,

chairman of

the stadium

authority

board, did not return phone calls seeking comment

about

nickname

Thursday.

Rochester’s Frontier Field will host 37 home games for the Tri- ple-A Yankees, while 10 more will be played in Syracuse, seven in Bata- via and six in Buffalo.

the

“We felt we

do

should

something to

commemo-

rate this his- toric season,” said Rochester General Man- ager Dan Mason on Wednes- day, who generated the idea to call the Triple -A Ya nkees some- thing other than Scranton/ Wilkes-Barre for this summer. “We thought it would be a neat marketing idea.”

New York Ya nkees General Manager Brian Cashman called the team the Empire State Ya nkees in reports as far back as November. Rochester’s Frontier Field will host 37 home games for the Triple -A Ya nkees, while 10 more will be played in Syra- cuse, seven in Batavia and six in Buffalo. That means 60 of the team’s 72 “home” games will be played in New York state this season, and 84 of the team’s to- tal of 144 games will be played in upstate New York.

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NATION

&

WORLD

FRIDAY, MARCH 9, 2012 PAGE 5A

I N

BRIEF

WORLD FRID AY , MARCH 9, 2012 PA GE 5A I N BRIEF AP PHOTO Two

AP PHOTO

Two of Sonic’s relatives enjoy a meal

Cincinnati Zoo nursery keeper Dawn Strasser places four 1-month-old hedgehogs around their feeding dish Thursday. Two male and two female hedgehogs were born Feb. 4 and are being hand raised by the nursery keepers until they are old enough to be included in the zoo’s animal ou- treach program.

WASHINGTON

Solar storm spares us

O ne of the strongest solar storms in years engulfed Earth early Thurs-

day, but scientists say the planet may have lucked out. Hours after the storm arrived, offi- cials said there were no reports of problems with power grids, GPS, satel- lites or other technologies that are often disrupted by solar storms. But that still can change as the storm shakes the planet’s magnetic field in ways that could disrupt technology but also spread colorful Northern Lights. Early indications show that it is about 10 times stronger than the normal solar wind that hits Earth.

LOS ANGELES

Teen smokers a worry

Although teen smoking has declined, more than 3 million high school stu- dents and 600,000 middle school stu- dents still smoke cigarettes and are at risk of early lung and heart problems, according to a report issued Thursday by the U.S. surgeon general. The smoking rates among teenage high school students have dropped from 27.5 percent in 1994 to 19.5 per- cent now, but the decline has slowed in recent years. Nearly 90 percent of new smokers start before they turn 18 and three- quarters of high school smokers contin- ue into adulthood, the report said. They are also more likely to get addict- ed because of their young age.

RICHMOND, VA.

Preacher backs legal pot

Religious broadcaster Pat Robertson says marijuana should be legalized and treated like alcohol because the govern- ment’s war on drugs has failed. The outspoken evangelical Christian and host of “The 700 Club” on the Virginia Beach-based Christian Broad- casting Network he founded said the war on drugs is costing taxpayers bil- lions of dollars. He said people should not be sent to prison for marijuana possession. The 81-year-old first became a self- proclaimed “hero of the hippie culture” in 2010 when he called for ending man- datory prison sentences for marijuana possession convictions. Robertson’s support for legalizing pot appeared in a New York Times story published Thursday. His spokes- man confirmed to The Associated Press that Robertson supports legal- ization with regulation.

NORRISTOWN, PA.

Cardinal’s death natural

A suburban Philadelphia coroner said Thursday that 88-year-old Cardinal Anthony Bevilacqua died of natural causes a day after he had been ruled competent to testify at the child-en- dangerment trial of a longtime aide. Officials had said Bevilacqua, who served as archbishop from 1988 to 2003, was suffering from dementia and cancer. But last month, prosecutors asked the coroner to investigate be- cause of the timing of his death. Bevilacqua, spiritual leader of the archdiocese’s 1.5 million Roman Ca- tholics from 1988 to 2003, died Jan. 31 at a seminary and was laid to rest with- out an autopsy. He was suffering from dementia and cancer, according to church officials and his lawyers, and his death was widely assumed to be from natural causes. Montgomery County Coroner Walter Hofman said there was no relation between the judge’s ruling and Bevilac- qua’s sudden death.

Nations urge answers from Iran

ments — a request echoed by other speakers at the 35-nation IAEA board meeting. While also stressing the diplomacy was the key to resolving tensions over Iran’s nuclear program, a European Union statement was stronger than that from the six powers, noting “regret” of Iran’s lack of response to international concern. Concerns about Parchin are high. Diplomats who spoke to The Associat- ed Press on We dnesday based their as- sessment on satellite images of the Ira- nian military facility they said appeared to show trucks and earth-moving vehi- cles, indicating an attempted cleanup of

By GEORGE JAHN Associated Press

VIENNA — Six world powers on Thursday urged Iran to answer ques- tions about suspicions it is working on nuclear weapons, but stressed that di- plomacy was the way forward, in a care- fully worded statement that reflected We stern sensitivity to Russian and Chi- nese concerns about being too harsh on Tehran. The six urged Iran to open its Parchin military site to International Atomic

Energy Agency perusal, amid reports radioactive traces.

that Tehran might be cleaning it of ev i-

dence of nuclear arms related experi- mation reveals that Iran had experi-

Two of six diplomats said their infor-

Countries stress diplomacy key to resolving tensions over nukes.

stress diplomacy key to resolving tensions over nukes. AP PHOTO This Aug. 13, 2004 satellite image

AP PHOTO

This Aug. 13, 2004 satellite image pro- vided by Digital- Globe and the In- stitute for Science and International Security shows the Iranian military complex at Parchin, about 19 miles southeast of Tehran.

mented with a test version of a neutron trigger at the site used to set of a nuclear blast — information not previously made public.

that it conducted any research and de- velopment into atomic weapons and says the totality of its nuclear activities are meant purely to generate power or

Iran vehemently denies allegations for research.

2 children found living in old school bus

for research. 2 children found living in old school bus AP PHO TO Postal carrier Vanessa

AP PHOTO

Postal carrier Vanessa Picazo stands outside the converted school bus Thursday, in Splendora, Texas, where she discovered two young children living. The children, ages 11 and 5, are now in the custody of child welfare authorities. The imprisoned father of the children says the family home was only meant to be temporary. Mark Shorten said Thursday he had planned to build a house on the wooded lot near Houston. But then he and his wife were arrested in 2010 on charges of embezzling money from Hurricane Ike victims. Shorten said an aunt asked to watch the kids couldn’t keep up. Sherrie Shorten, the children’s mother, said she is getting out of prison in 30 days and was coming home to take care of the kids.

Syrian oil minister jumps ‘ship’

Abdo Husameddine is highest-ranking member of government to defect.

The Associated Press

BEIRUT — Syria’s deputy oil minister appeared tense as he looked at the camera and announced in a video that he has defected from President Bashar Assad’s regime, ac- knowledging he expects gov- ernment forces to “burn my home” and “persecute my family.” Abdo Husameddine, a 58- year-old father of four, on Thursday became the highest- ranking civilian official to join the opposition, and he urged his countrymen to “abandon this sinking ship” as the na-

his countrymen to “abandon this sinking ship” as the na- AP PHOTO A Syrian boy cries

AP PHOTO

A Syrian boy cries for his father, who was killed by a Syrian army sniper, at the father’s funeral Thursday.

the opposition with tanks and

meddine seemed to address snipers. The U.N. estimates

7,500 people have been killed since the uprising began. “You have inflicted on those

Assad directly, accusing him of vast crimes in the past year

In the YouTube video, Husa-

tion spirals toward civil war. as government forces pummel

you claim are your people a full year of sorrow and sad- ness, denied them their basic rights to life and humanity and pushed the country to the edge of the abyss,” said Husa- meddine. The authenticity of the vid- eo could not be verified, and he did not disclose his loca- tion. Assad’s regime has suffered

a steady stream of low-level ar- my defectors, who have joined

a group of dissidents known as

the Free Syrian Army, now numbering in the thousands. Brig. Gen. Mostafa Ahmad al-Sheik, who fled to Turkey in January, was the highest rank- ing officer to bolt. In late Au- gust, Adnan Bakkour, the at- torney general of the central city of Hama, appeared in a video announcing he had de- fected.

2 reported dead, 7 wounded in Pitt psychiatric clinic shooting

Reports about

possible second

gunman and

hostage-taking

unfounded,

spokesman

says.

The Associated Press

before one person was killed and

One of the injured was a police officer. Neighboring buildings were placed on lockdown, police said. University of Pittsburgh Medi- cal Center spokesman Paul Wood said media reports about a possi-

ly shot by a University of Pitts- ble second gunman and a hostage

burgh police officer. But he con-

firmed “police acted admirably Presbyterian hospital were un-

and did engage in gunfire.”

situation at the clinic or at UPMC

confirming the gunman was fatal-

PITTSBURGH — Pittsburgh’s seven others were hurt, apparent-

mayor said a gunman who opened fire after entering the lobby of a

psychiatric hospital at the Univer- by gunfire.

sity of Pittsburgh on Thursday was armed with two semi-auto- matic handguns. Mayor Luke Ravenstahl said the man exchanged gunfire with police and was shot dead but not

ly by his gunfire. One injured person wasn’t hurt

The mayor stopped short of

founded.

Romney is up against skepticism in South

Despite resistance, some Southern Republicans say he’s still better than Obama.

By EMILY WAGSTER PETTUS Associated Press

JACKSON, Miss. — Mitt Rom-

ney faces a tough sell in the Deep South. With Mississippi and Ala- bama primaries coming up next Tuesday, there’s concern that he’s too slick, not really a conserva- tive. In a region where the evan- gelical vote is important, some are skeptical about his Mormon faith. But if Romney wins the Repub- lican nomination and it’s a No- vember choice between him and Democratic President Barack Obama, the former Massachu- setts governor may be just good enough for some Southerners. “If push comes to shove and he gets the nomina- tion, I’ll go in the voting booth like

this and vote for

him,” says Missis- sippi retiree David Wilke, holding his nose. Former House Speaker Newt Gingrich, who represented Geor- gia for 20 years and now lives in Virginia, needs to win every state from So uth Carolina to Te xas to get to the convention this sum- mer, spokesman R.C. Hammond says. Former Pennsylvania Sen. Rick Santorum’s staff says he’ll be ag- gressive in states where Gingrich expects to perform well. Gingrich scored an early pri-

mary victory in South Carolina and won this week in Georgia.

Romney added a Virginia win this week — Gingrich and Santorum weren’t on the ballot — to his Jan. 31 win in Florida. Santorum won Te nnessee. After Mississippi and Alabama next week, Louisiana votes March 24, North Carolina and Te xas Ma y 8, Arka ns as Ma y 22 and Texas May 29. Santorum and Gingrich are in- voking God and country as they campaign in Mississippi and Ala- bama, They’re winning applause by saying Obama has been a weak ally for Israel, a point that reso- nates with Christian conserva- tives. Romney and Obama also ex- pressed support for Israel this week in speeches to the American Israel Public Affairs Committee in Washington, but Mary Dockery, director of a Christian youth group in central Mississippi, said she’s voting for Santorum be- cause she believes he’s the most pro-Israel candidate.

2012

ELECTION

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NEWS

THE TIMES LEADER www.timesleader.com

Trucking company aiding Scranton’s parade

Road Scholar trucks will block certain intersections to let police focus on other duties.

By CHRISTOPHER J. HUGHES chughes@golackawanna.com

SCRANTON – With help from a Dunmore trucking company, the Scranton Police Department will have more officers than ever avail- able during the city ’s annual St. Patrick’s Parade on Saturday. “Road Scholar Trucking has of- fered to come down to the city and bring some of their specialty trucks to block off certain inter- sections,” Police Chief Dan Duffy said, noting that intersections

were previously blocked by uni- formed officers. “We’re still going to employ the same amount of officers for the pa- rade,” Duffy said. “We’re just de- ploying them in a different direc- tion. Now, they’re going to be able to rove up and down the street in order to detect or deter any crimi- nal activity so the families can en- joy their time more.” Duffy said last year’s 50th an- nual parade was calm and he cred- ited the lack of problems to pa- rade-goers making the right deci- sions. “One thing ’s for certain, though. We’re not go ing to toler- ate any nonsense in the down- town area. We wa nt people to

INSIDE: Scranton, W-B sites for Irish pride, see The Guide

Lackawanna Avenue and from Mifflin to Jefferson avenues. The parade begins at 11:45 a.m. at the corner of Mulberry Street and Wyoming Avenue. It turns left onto Lackawanna Avenue,

come down here and enjoy the pa- rade,” he said.

Scranton police made 37 ar- wraps around to Jefferson Ave-

nue, turns onto Spruce Street and

from 32 in 2010. Charges included ends in the 400 block of North

drug possession and driving un- der the influence. The majority of calls received on Parade Day are alcohol related, but some turn into physical fights and domestic disputes, Duffy said. Police Capt. Carl Graziano said roads will be closed downtown beginning at about 10:30 a.m. Clo- sures run from Mulberry Street to

rests on Parade Day in 2011, up

Washington Avenue. Parade Director Jamie Hail- stone said the event will include about 50 musical acts, including eight local marching bands and 15 pipe bands – surpassing last year’s record number of pipe and drum corps by one. About11,000 people are expect- ed to march in downtown Scran- ton this weekend.

are expect- ed to march in downtown Scran- ton this weekend. COURT BRIEFS Judge William Ames-

COURT BRIEFS

Judge William Ames- bury denied Kozloski’s request.

WILKES-BARRE – The request of a Pittston Township man to reduce his $100,000 bail on

charges related to firing relating to six separate

a gun into a tax office in incidents for which,

early January was de- nied Thursday.

WILKES-BARRE – A city man pleaded guilty Thursday to 12 charges

prosecutors said, he will have to pay approxi-

Michael Kozloski, 28, mately $79,000 in resti-

was originally charged in January with related charges, but those charges were later dis- missed. New charges,

filed on Feb. 28 by Pitt- including burglary and

ston Township police, include aggravated assault, discharging a firearm into an occupied

structure, person not to will be sentenced on

possess a firearm, sim- ple assault, reckless endangerment and in- decent exposure. He was then jailed for lack of $100,000 bail. A pre- liminary hearing is

scheduled for March 23. elry and other valuables.

May 11. According to court papers, Reddick burglar- ized five homes in Sep- tember 2010 and one home in May 2009, taking electronics, jew-

tution. Christopher Reddick, 20, of Welles Street , entered the plea to a number of charges,

theft, before Luzerne County Judge David Lupas. Lupas said Reddick

GETTING FIRED UP FOR TEST WEEK

Lupas. Lupas sa id Reddick GETTING FIRED UP FOR TEST WEEK CLARK VA N ORDEN/THE TIMES

CLARK VAN ORDEN/THE TIMES LEADER

B ear Creek Community Charter School held its first PSSA Bonfire on Wednesday in the field behind

the sc hool in Bea r Creek Township Th e fi ery eve nt kicked off activities fo r PSSA we ek, which is

next week. The Pennsylvania System of School Assessment tests measure academic skills.

POLICE BLOTTER

WILKES-BARRE – City

police reported the following:

• Darius Smith, 34, of Coal

Street, was charged with public drunkenness Tuesday

at the Intermodal Transporta- tion Center.

• Nycholl Ware, 31, of Park-

view Circle, was charged with public drunkenness Tuesday after police responded to

Catholic Social Services, 33 E. Northampton St. for a report of an intoxicated woman with

a 5-month-old child. The child was taken into protective custody by Luzerne County Children and Youth Services.

• Tomas Huertas of Jessup

was charged with public drunkenness Tuesday while

he was intoxicated at the Park & Lock East garage on the corner of North Washington and East Market streets.

• Justin Puzak of Hanover

Township was charged with possession of drug parapher- nalia and public intoxication Wednesday morning in the area of McLean Street and Hazle Avenue. Police respon- ded to a report of a male checking door handles on vehicles and located Puzak, who admitted trying to enter

the vehicles and to possessing

a hypodermic needle.

Disabled advocates slam Corbett administration’s enforcement of increased restrictions on Capitol access

‘New practice’ designed to keep crowds of protesters out of non-public areas.

By PETER JACKSON Associated Press

problems with larger groups day to check with Corbett’s budget cuts and other changes

scheduler on her request for a meeting with the governor. She challenged Thompson’s claim that people in wheelchairs were no more likely than other people to be refused access to the upper floors. “I haven’t seen evidence of it being done to anyone other than

ural gas-drilling foes staged dem-

that are serious concerns for dis- abled people.

coming in and causing some dis- turbances, disruptions,” Thomp- son said. While most rallies and other large events are held in public ar- eas — one of the two rotundas or on the steps outside the Capitol

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individuals from trying to meet with legislators or the governor. Auer said she and another wheelchair user were not permit- ted to use the elevator Wednes-

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administration decision to step

up enforcement of restrictions onstrations outside Corbett’s people with disabilities,” she on access to portions of the third-floor office suite last year. said.

Pennsylvania Capitol unfairly Capitol police officers watched,

targets people in wheelchairs, an advocate said Thursday.

It is “another way for (Gov. which visitors may use the stair- tions, but that she fears that it

Thompson said decisions on challenge to the new restric-

Auer said ADAPT is looking into the possibility of a legal

might be a distraction from the

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PAGE 8A FRIDAY, MARCH 9, 2012

NEWS

THE TIMES LEADER www.timesleader.com

State official lauds IEER at Wilkes

DEP chief Michael Krancer says unbiased science needed on issues such as gas drilling.

By MATT HUGHES mhughes@timesleader.com

WILKES-BARRE – To under- stand the impact Marcellus Shale gas drilling is having in Pennsylva- nia, nothing is more important than unbiased science and public transparency. That is one of the guiding princi- ples of the Wilkes University-based Institute for Energy and Environmental Research, and some- thing state Depart-

lieves. And when the state’s top envi- ronmental regulator got a first- hand look at the institute’s work Thursday, he liked what he saw. “I can’t tell you how impressed I am,” Krancer said. “I’m so happy I came here to see it.”

Krancer said. “I’m so happy I came here to see it.” lyzing existing hydrologic data and

lyzing existing hydrologic data and

clearinghouse for scientific infor- mation about development of the Marcellus Shale. “One of the things we’ve heard from the community is, can you construct a website that would act as a clearinghouse for all kinds of

FRED ADAMS/FOR THE TIMES LEADER

tute’s work may not directly sup-

“bring(s) additional talent to the table,” and that’s a good thing. “They’re interested in science

just as we’re interested in science,” Krancer said. “We can’t have too

many institutions do

this kind of

work. It’s great work, as long as it

information that is useful to the remains unbiased.”

public,” Institute Director Ken- neth Klemow said. “But especially that it’s objective, so that it doesn’t

Yudichak added the findings of

State Department of Environmental Protection Secretary Michael Kran- cer, left, and state Sen. John Yudichak, D-Ply- mouth Township, listen on Thursday as Wilkes Uni- versity College of Science and Engineering Dean Dale Bruns, right, ex- plains research projects at the Institute of Energy and Environmental Re- search. Krancer praised the local program for its work.

the institute should be the basis for

ment of Environ- building a website to serve as a plement DEP’s regulatory role, it policy decisions made by the state

legislature. “We’re trying to bring science to the debate, and I think Wilkes Uni- versity is doing a great job in terms of research,” Yudichak said. “We’re really trying to bring sound science to the table so that policy makers have good scientific information to the table when it comes time to

mental Protection Secretary Michael Krancer said he be-

scientists like those working for make decisions.”

During a tour with state Sen. reek of industry or opponent.”

In the future, Klemow said he

himself the work undertaken by would like to build on the insti-

tute’s current work and branch into other fields, including studying

profit and a public policy think drilling’s impact on ground water,

tank established in September making science-based policy rec-

ommendations and using polls to understand the overall opinion Northeastern Pennsylvania resi-

2010.

That includes: monitoring sur- face water for changes, analyzing

variations in insect life around dents have of drilling.

Krancer said that while the insti-

drilling sites, uploading and ana-

the institute, a consortium of two local colleges, a conservancy non-

John Yudichak, Krancer saw for

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Man arrested in apartment robbery

By EDWARD LEWIS elewis@timesleader.com

NANTICOKE -- Police arrest- ed a man they allege robbed an- other man at gunpoint inside a neighbor’s apartment. Benjamin Artache, 22, of

Apollo Circle, was arraigned Artache Thursday in Wilkes-Barre Cen-

tral Court on charges of robbery, burglary, criminal attempt to commit robbery, criminal tres- pass, receiving stolen property, illegal possession of a firearm and simple assault. He was jailed at the Luzerne County Correctional Facility for lack of $25,000 bail. According to the criminal complaint:

Shaka Diamayne told police he was in his girlfriend’s apart- ment at 264 Apollo Circle on Wednesday when Artache en- tered uninvited with a handgun and a police-style baton. Dia-

the gun at him and demand- ed anything of value. Diamayne told Artache he had noth- ing to give him. Artache

ordered Diamayne upstairs and followed him closely behind while aiming the gun at him. Artache then left the apart- ment and drove away. Police said they arrested Ar- tache when he returned to his apartment at about 4 p.m. A police search of Artache’s apartment found a loaded .32- caliber handgun hidden under children’s clothes in a dresser, the complaint says. The gun was reported stolen to Nanticoke police in October. Police said Artache is prohib- ited from carrying or owning a gun due to a conviction in Mas-

from carrying or owning a gun due to a conviction in Mas- mayne alleged Artache aimed

mayne alleged Artache aimed sachusetts.

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THE TIMES LEADER www.timesleader.com

NEWS

FRIDAY, MARCH 9, 2012 PAGE 9A

Customers were friends

Area restaurateur Kal Kazimi, who died Wednesday, recalled for his hospitality.

Kazimi, who died Wednesday, recalled for his hospitality. K a z i m i worked his

Kazimi

worked his way up to general manager before leaving to open his restaurant, had “boundless energy” and a knack for know-

ing what made disease.

would stand by the table to make sure people were happy. He treat- ed them like family members.” Kazimi said he knew his brother was respected in the community, but did not realize the impact he had until he moved here in July to be closer to him as he battled his

“I was amazed at how many people knew him and liked him.

He was just a great guy,” he said. That reputation

was something his nephew, Hussein Kazimi, already knew. “There wasn’t

anyone the guy met

he didn’t leave

a great impression on,” Hussein Kazi-

mi said. “I never

heard anyone say a bad word about

him. He was one of

hardest work-

ers I ever met in my life.” Family, friends and former cus- tomers who wish to pay their re- spects to Kazimi are invited to at- tend a memorial service that will be held today, 6-8 p.m., at the Is- lamic Association of Northeastern Pennsylvania mosque located at 999 Scott St., Wilkes-Barre.

that

the

By TERRIE MORGAN-BESECKER tmorgan@timesleader.com

Kal Kazimi knew virtually no English when he emigrated to the United States in 1987 and took a job as a banquet waiter at Genetti

Hotel & Convention Center in ers’ tables.

“He was tireless.

Seventeen years later, the na- He’d work 20 hours

tive of Jordan proudly translated years of hard work and dedication into his own success as he opened

Kazimi’s Restaurant, a popular the restaurant, lo-

cated on Schuyler Avenue, from 2004

Rather than begrudge his for- until October 2010, mer employee for becoming his when he sold it

shortly after being

of Genetti’s, became one of his diagnosed with kid-

most loyal customers. That’s a testament to the impact Kazimi, who died We dnesday at

age 49, had on people, Genetti and Kazimi’s family members said. “He loved people. If you knew

Kal, you would become his said.

friend,” Genetti said. “I was proud and pleased he had the opportuni- ty to own his own business and flourish with it.” Genetti said Kazimi, who

competition, Gus Genetti, owner

fine dining establishment in King- ston.

Wilkes-Barre.

customers happy. He was best known for his Caesar salad, which he personally prepared at custom-

a day, if necessary,” Genetti said. Kazimi operated

ney cancer, said his brother, Hani Kazi-

“If you knew Kal, you would become his friend. I was proud and pleased he had the oppor- tunity to own his own business and flourish with it.”

Gus Genetti Owner of Genetti’s

mi. Customer service was always first and foremost in his brother ’s mind, Hani Kazimi

“He was really loved by his cli- ents. People would go to the res- taurant not just for the food, but for his hospitality,” he said. “He was a very good entertainer and

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Customers speak for and against Aqua rate hike

Public hearing held on water company’s request for a 9.4 increase in annual revenue.

By JERRY LYNOTT jlynott@timesleader.com

David Jarrett, borough manager.

ber, saying the increase would But residents are recovering

from flooding in September and will be paying for a $10 million sewer system upgrade. He asked for at least a one-year delay in

crease with the PUC in Novem-

cover the amount it invested in its infrastructure and pay for the expenses necessary to operate its water systems. The publicly

traded company serves nearly the increase.

“It just simply is not the time to do this,” said Jarrett, who spoke at the last hearing. Bear Creek Township resident

many people Thursday night

spoke in support of the $38.6 Washington Township, and Ma-

ry Ellen Buckbee, manager of Bonnie Wasilewski urged the

judges to reject the increase, say- ing Aqua installed a new system in 2009 with $3 million in tax- payer funds. Sue Dicton of the Midway Ma- nor in Kingston Township held up a dirty water filter, saying she

last of five public hearings on was an investor in the Maple has to change them every six

Building,

Kingston Township Municipal

heard sworn testimony at the ing County.

Utility contractor Scott Linde of Kingston told the judges he

Factoryville borough, supported Aqua, which made improve- ments to the water systems serv- ing their communities in Wyom-

million rate hike sought by Aqua Pennsylvania as did opponents of the increase. Administrative Law Judges Darlene Heep and Angela Jones

406,000 customers in 27 coun-

KINGSTON TWP. – Just as ties.

Dan Huff, a supervisor from

where they held the

Aqua’s request for a 9.4 increase in annual revenue. The judges expect to make a recommenda-

tion by mid-June to the state over the water service.

Public Utility Commission, which suspended the company ’s increase until Aug. 18.

Crest development in Kingston Township, one of the three de- velopments where Aqua took

“They did a good job and the rates are fair,” said Linde. The company ’s service has im-

weeks instead of monthly since Aqua took over the service. Dicton later met with state Rep. Phyllis Mundy, D-King- ston. Mundy opposed the in- crease, as she did with the four others Aqua obtained since 2004

The utility filed for the in- proved in Sayre, acknowledged totaling nearly $100 million.

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PAGE 10A FRIDAY, MARCH 9, 2012

OBITUARIES

THE TIMES LEADER www.timesleader.com

JACK L. BIGGERS, of Moun- tain Top, formerly of Raleigh, N.C.,

Clay City, Ill., and Effingham, Ill., died Monday, March 5, 2012, at his home. He was the husband of the late Norma J. Murvin. He was a music professor at St. Augustine College in Raleigh, N.C. He played piano for more than 10 years with the Big Band Musician Leon Jor- dan and the Continentals. He was

a graduate of Effingham High

School and University of Illinois, with BS and master’s degrees and did graduate work at the Peabody Institute in Baltimore. Surviving are son, Bill Biggers, and wife Amal, Mountain Top; grand- daughter, Rita Biggers, Mountain Top; nieces, Margorie Fye and hus- band Jack, Olney, Ill; Donna Beyers and husband John, Fergu- son, Mo.; Darlene Biggers, Hous- ton, Texas Funeral will be held today in

Clay City, Ill. Memorials may be made to Ruth’s Place House of Hope, Wilkes-Barre.

MR. MICHAEL R. VILCHOCK, 80, of Old Forge, passed away Wednesday, March 7, 2012 , at Community Medical Center, Scranton. He was retired from

Moses Tayl or Hospital, Sc ra nton, and later employed by the borough

of Old Forge in the parks depart-

ment. Surviving are his wife, the former Elizabeth (Betty) Krappa; daughter, Va lerie Weller, and her husband, Pat, of Old Forge; four grandchildren, Jeff, Kevin, Melissa and Patrick Weller; three great- grandchildren; sister, Jean Vil- chock of Old Forge; nieces and ne- phews. Funeral will be held Saturday at

8:30 a.m. from the Bernard J. Pion- tek Funeral Home Inc., 204 Main St., Duryea, with Mass of Christian Burial at 9 a.m. in Holy Rosary Church, Duryea, with the Rev. An- drew Sinnott officiating. Inter- ment will be in Holy Rosary Ceme- tery, Duryea. Friends may call 5 to 8 p.m. today at the funeral home.

GREGORY S. KAMINSKI, R.N., 50, of Wilkes-Barre, passed away Wednesday, March 7, 2012 at the Wilkes-Barre General Hospital. Funeral arrangements are pending from the Hugh B. Hughes

& Son Inc. Funeral Home, 1044

Wyoming Ave., Forty Fort.

ROBERT J. HOGAN SR., 65, of Edwardsville, died Thursday, March 8, 2012 at home. Funeral arrangements are pending from the Yeosock Fu neral Home, 40 S. Main St., Plains Town- ship.

William Futch

March 3, 2012

W illiam Joseph Futch , 89, of Sewell, N.J., died March 3,

2012.

Mr. Futch was born in Exeter, on May 17, 1922. He served as a Sargent in the

United States Army during World War II.

A true entrepreneur, he en-

gaged in many different occupa- tions, including heavy-equipment operator for the family-owned business, Truck Crane Corpora- tion in Exeter, Pa., and was a mem- ber of the International Union of Operating Engineers, Local 542. He excelled in marksmanship, sailing and golf. Mr. Futch also earned his HAM Radio license. He encouraged all of his children to

aspire to learn and grow in diversi-

ty and to be honest, hard-working

people. Mr. Futch retired to Florida, where he worked part time, and

enjoyed golfing and other leisure activities.

He recently moved back to New

Jersey to be near his children.

He was predeceased by his wife,

Shirley Rita Woods Futch, his brother, James Futch, and his sis- ter Carmel Poepperling. Surviving are his children, Mar- leen Woods, Peggy Futch, Cheryl Cunningham (Edward), Jay W. Futch (Melissa) and Robin Dolan, 11 grandchildren and six great- grandchildren. Also surviving are his sister AnneMarie Beaver of Kingston, and his sisters-in-law, Lana K. Heck of Mountain Top and Muriel Vino of Mountain Top, and many nieces and nephews. There will be a private ser- vice conducted for the fam-

ily.

will be a private ser- vice conducted for the fam- ily. OBITUARY POLICY The Times Leader

OBITUARY POLICY

The Times Leader publish- es free obituaries, which have a 27-line limit, and paid obituaries, which can run with a photograph. A funeral home representative can call the obituary desk at (570) 829-7224, send a fax to (570) 829-5537 or e-mail to tlo- bits@timesleader.com. If you fax or e-mail, please call to confirm. Obituaries must be submitted by 9 p.m. Sunday through Thursday and 7:30 p.m. Friday and Saturday. Obituaries must be sent by a funeral home or crematory, or must name who is hand- ling arrangements, with address and phone number. We discourage handwritten notices; they incur a $15 typing fee.

Robert H. Massaker

March 8, 2012

R obert H. Massaker, of Spring- ville, passed away on Thursday

at the Geisinger Wyoming Valley Medical Center. He was born in Meshoppen on February 24, 1950, son of Robert and Carole Fleming Massaker of

Tunkhannock. Bob was a 1968 graduate of Tunk- hannock High School and a 1975 graduate of Bloomsburg University. While in high school and college, Bob was active in numerous sports including football, basketball and baseball. He was a loyal fan of the Philadelphia Eagles and Detroit Ti- gers. During his professional career, Bob worked for the Tunkhannock New Age-Examiner and the Farm- ers Friend. He was the owner of A & B Wholesale, selling to several busi- ness and taverns in the Endless Mountains Region. He was most re- cently employed by the Wilkes- Barre Publishing Company Inc., serving as supervisor of its paper routes. He was a member of the Tunkhannock Moose Lodge 1276. He was the organizer of the Alumni Bloomsburg Reunion which for

over 10 years was held at the Shad- owbrook Resort in Tunkhannock. Bob was a loving husband, step- father, brother and uncle, and will be missed by all including numer- ous friends that he became ac- quainted with in the Endless Moun- tains.

that he became ac- quainted with in the Endless Moun- tains. Su rviving are his wife

Surviving are his wife of nine years, Audrey Pashchuk Massaker; a sister and husband, Ann and Rob- ert Anderson of Tunkhannock; niece Mauri Anderson of Harveys Lake; stepdaughters, Lisa Garrison of Clarks Summit and Brooke Oak- ley of Carbondale; step grand- daughter Reyna Garrison and step grandson Dylan Oakley. Funeral services will be held on Saturday at 1p.m. from the Sheldon- Kukuchka Funeral Home, 73 W. Tio- ga St ., Tunkhannock, with the Rev. Lori Robinson. Friends may call at the funeral home from 11 a.m. until the time of services. Those wishing may make memo- rial contributions to the Moose Lodge 1276 or to the Wyoming County Cancer Society. Online con- dolences may be sent to the family at www.sheldonkukuchkafuneral- home.com.

Paul John Matthew Stebbins Jr.

March 7, 2012

P aul John Matthew Stebbins Jr. surprised and annoyed us all one

final time by dying suddenly on We dnesday, March 7, 2012 at the Wilkes-Barre General Hospital. On August 25,1979, according to him, “God gave the ladies of the world a gift.” One special woman was lucky enough to unwrap that gift and on June 26, 2004, he mar-

ried his best friend and soul mate, of almost eight years, Suzie. He even forgave her for being a New York Yankees fan. Besides his wife, “PJ” found the greatest joys in the Boston Red Sox, being the best uncle, bargain shop- ping, Phil Collins, Republicans, fun- ny movies, the Florida Gators, and pushing his father’s buttons. (and maybe the occasional hate mail that showed up after he wrote an edito- rial.) He was a member of St. Barbara Parish ( St. Anthony of Padua Church, Exeter). He graduated from Bloomsburg University with a degree in elementary education. Paul also served as treasurer for the Young Republicans. With heavy hearts, he leaves be- hind, in addition to his wife, the for-

mer Suzie Scavone, his father, Paul Stebbins Sr.; siblings, Lea Black, To- nya Stebbins, Mandi Stebbins, Kris- sy Blank, Katie Cartwright and Ja- cob Cartwright; in-laws, Mark, Ro- semary, and Becky Scavone; grand- mother Irene Stebbins; aunts, uncles, cousins, several, very much loved nieces and nephews; and his crazy dog, Yogi. Relatives and friends are invited to a memorial service on Sunday, March 11, from 3 to 5 p.m. at the

service on Su nday, March 11, from 3 to 5 p.m. at the Gubbiotti Funeral Home,

Gubbiotti Funeral Home, 1030 Wyoming Ave., Exeter. PJ would ask that you honor his memory by donning your favorite Red Sox ball cap and/or voting for a Republican! His more practical fam- ily members, however, ask that you honor him by smiling through the pain, doting upon your children, tol- erating someone difficult, making amends, being a better friend, and most importantly - turning to some- one you love, right now, and telling them so. These are the qualities that he possessed and that the world needs more of. Many thanks to his doctors: Char- les Manganiello, Mark Bernardi, Vi- jayaramanr Pugazhenai, Susan Bro- zena and to all of the nurses at the Geisinger Heart Hospital. In lieu of flowers, memorial dona- tions may be made to the Big Broth- ers/Big Sisters of the Bridge Foun- dation, 35 E. Northampton St., Wilkes-Barre, PA 18701. To send the family expressions of sympathy or online condolences please visit, www.gubbiottifh.com.

Christine Mackin Marshall

March 8, 2012

www.gubbiottifh.com. Christine Mackin Marshall March 8, 2012 Christine Mackin Mar- shall, 42, passed away at her

Christine Mackin Mar- shall, 42, passed away at her home in

would do anything for her numerous friends. Their outpouring of support and generosity during her illness cannot be measured nor repaid. She was preceded in death by her

Haverford, Pa., father, John Mackin; niece Amy on March 8, Spaid and nephew Michael John

Mackin. In addition to her husband and children, Chris is survived by her mother, Mary Mackin; 11 brothers and sisters; her in-laws, John and Su- san Marshall, and Megan Alpini; nu- merous aunts, uncles, nieces and ne- phews. The family will receive guests at a Memorial Reception on Sunday from 5 to 8 p.m. at Chadwick and McKinney Funeral Home, 30 E. Ath- ens Ave., Ardmore, Pa., with a time of sharing between 6:15 and 6:45 p.m. to anyone who wishes to recall memories of Chris or recite a special poem or prayer. A Memorial Mass of Christian Burial will be held at Our Mother of Good Counsel Church in

2012 after a 29- month battle

with cancer. Born in Kingston, on April 8, 1969 and raised in Forty Fort, “Bopper,” as she was known to her family, was the daughter of John and Mary Mackin. She graduated from Wyoming Va lley We st High School in 1987 and obtained her BS in Accounting from St. Joseph’s

University in Philadelphia. Prior to her illness, Chris ran her own ac- counting practice and enjoyed traveling, yoga, gardening, home decorating and remodeling. Chris married her soul mate, John, in 1992. They would have celebrated their 20th anniversary

in June. Their incredible love and

devotion to each other knew no bounds and provided inspiration to all who knew them. Together, they raised three beautiful chil-

dren: Jason, age 17; Alyson, age 14; and Ryan, age 10. Family was the focus of Chris’ life, and she cher- ished every moment with her chil- dren. She led by example, and laid

a strong foundation upon which

they will build their lives. Chris was a ray of light that shone on all who were fortunate enough to know her. People grav- itated to her strong spirit, sense of humor and inner and outer beauty. She always had a big smile and kind words for everyone, and she

Bryn Mawr, Pa, on Monday, March 12, at 10 a.m where you may call af- ter 9 a.m. Interment will be in St. Paul’s Lutheran Cemetery, Ard- more, Pa. In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to Cancer Support Commu- nity of Philadelphia, The Suzanne Morgan Center at Ridgeland, 4100 Chamounix Drive, Philadelphia, PA

19131.

at Ridgeland, 4100 Chamounix Drive, Philadelphia, PA 19131. Don Innes March 8, 2012 D onn Innes,

Don Innes

March 8, 2012

D onn Innes, age 84, of Dallas, died Thursday, March 8, 2012 af-

ter a brief stay at Hospice Commu-

nity Care Inpatient Unit at Geisin- ger South Wilkes-Barre. Born in Wilkes-Barre, he was the son of the late Donald F. and Marie Rothermal Innes. He attended the Harry Hillman Academy, Wyoming Seminary Day School and Prepara- tory School and graduated from the

Ta ft Sc hool, Wa tertown, Conn.

He served in the United States Army from 1945 to 1947. Donn then attended Cornell University, where he earned a bachelor’s degree in Me- chanical Engineering. At Cornell, he was a member and past president of Delta Kappa Epsilon fraternity. Following college he received a commission in the United States Air Force, serving from 1951 until 1953 as an Early Warning Radar Special- ist in Japan. After his military service, he was employed by the W. H. Nicholson Company, Wilkes-Barre, where he spent his entire professional career. He became president of Nicholson Division, Datron Systems. At retirement, he and his wife set- tled in Amelia Island, Fla., returning

he and his wife set- tled in Amelia Island, Fla., returning home to Dallas in the

home to Dallas in the summer. Donn wa s a member of the West- moreland Club, Wilkes-Barre, and the Amelia Island Club, Florida. Surviving are his wife of 58 years, the former Carolyn Heyl, Dallas; children, Donn Chandler Innes, Long Pond, Pa.; Ann Christian In- nes, New Hope, Pa.; Tracy Innes Riccetti and her husband, John, Shavertown; grandchildren, Lee and Scot Riccetti. Funeral services will be pri- vate and at the convenience of the family. Interment will be made in Hollenback Cemetery, Wilkes- Barre.

will be made in Hollenback Cemetery, Wilkes- Ba rre. Jeremy Scott Rackley March 6, 2012 J

Jeremy Scott Rackley

March 6, 2012

J eremy Scott Rackley, 31, of Mountain Top, passed away

Tuesday, March 6, 2012 in Geisinger Wyoming Valley Medical Center, Plains Township. Born in Marion, Ohio, on March 31, 1980, he was the son of Cynthia (Scott) Rackley and Anthony Rack- ley. He attended Ta ft Middle School, where he played soccer and received numerous academic awards. He also played saxophone and bass guitar for the 8th-grade jazz band. Jeremy was a 1998 graduate of Marion Harding High School. While at Marion Harding, he was a member of the Marion Cadets, which were under the direction of Mike King for 2 years. He was also a member of the Harding Marching Band and was a member of the drum line. He also played set for Starduster Jazz Band and Show Choir. He won the individual award for instrumental performance at show choir competitions. Jeremy was an accomplished drummer and for 2 years, he played drum set for the musical “How Great Thou Art.” Since the age of 2, Jeremy ’s dream was to be in the law enforce- ment field. While in high school, he mentored with the Marion Police Department in the Shadowing Pro- gram, which was designed for high school students wishing to enter law enforcement. When he gradu- ated, he was selected to be a volun- teer in the Explorers and began pur- suing his career with the Pennsylva- nia State Troopers. He was preceded in death by his grandparents Lloyd and Leavata Tyler and an uncle, Phil Scott. Left to cherish his memory are

and an uncle, Phil Scott. Left to cherish his memory are his mother, Cynthia Rackley; his

his mother, Cynthia Rackley; his Bi- chon, Baby; aunt , Theres a Tyler- Smith (Bishop Wallace Smith); un- cles and cousins. Services will be held Saturday at 11 a.m. at New Covenant Christian Fellowship Church, 780 South Main Street, Wilkes-Barre. Jeremy ’s un-

cle, Bishop Wallace Smith, will offi- ciate. Entombment will follow in Oak Lawn Cemetery, Hanover Township. Friends may call Satur- day morning from 10 to 11 a.m. at the church. There will be a Memorial Service on Saturday, March 31, 2012. in Ma- rion, Ohio. Memorial donations may be made to the Leavata Tyler Scholar- ship Fund, c/o New Covenant Christian Fellowship Church, 780 S. Main Street, Wilkes-Barre, PA

18701.

Arrangements have been entrust- ed to Kniffen O’Malley Funeral Home Inc., 465 S. Main Street, Wilkes-Barre. To send Jeremy ’s fam- ily words of comfort and friendship, please visit www.BestLifeTributes- .com.

Catherine Hanson Schappert

March 7, 2012

.com. Catherine Hanson Schappert March 7, 2012 es, Florida, and Mark, Wapwallopen; two sisters, Mary Jane

es, Florida, and Mark, Wapwallopen; two sisters, Mary Jane Sherman and

Hanson Schap-

pert, 57, of husband Harry, Wilkes-Barre, and Plains Town- Susan Libertoski and husband,

Catherine

ship, passed

Frank, Harveys Lake; a sister-in-law,

away Wednes-

Rosann Hanson, Wapwallopen; a sis-

day evening in ter-in-law, Susan Schappert Heller- her home after stein, and husband, Daniel, Whea-

an illness. She was the wife of David G. Schappert, to whom she has been married 32 years. Born on November 24, 1954, in Wilkes-Barre, she was the daugh-

ter of Jane Fox Hanson, Wilkes Drinker Street in Dunmore.

Interment in St. Mary ’s Cemetery, Hanover Township. Friends may call Sunday 2 to 5 p.m. There will also be a memorial ser-

Education from King ’s College and vice at the Marywood Chapel on

a Master of Library Science from

the University of Pittsburgh. She also earned an M.S. in Instruction-

al Te chnology from Marywood Foundation, 140 Main Street, Lu-

University. She started her career at the Os- terhout Free Library and was the Head of Public Services at Eugene S. Farley Library, Wilkes Universi- ty, before leaving in 1987 to join the library staff at Marywood as Coor- dinator of Au tomated and Te chni- cal Services and Director of the Li- brary Automation Project. In 1995, she became Director of Library Services and later Assistant Vice President for Library Services. Also surviving are two brothers, Robert and wife, Lisa, The Villag-

April 15 at 2 p.m. Donations may be made to Gener- ation to Generation c/o the Luzerne

Barre, and the late Robert J. Han- son. Cathy graduated from Bishop Hoban High School, Wilkes-Barre. She earned a B.A. in Elementary

ton, Maryland; four nieces, eight ne- phews, grandnieces and grandneph- ews. The funeral will be Monday at 9:30 a.m. in the Carlucci-Golden-De- Santis Funeral Home Inc., 318 East

zerne, PA 18709, or to the charity for pets of one’s choice. To send the family an online con- dolence or for further information, please visit www.NEPAFuneral- Home.com.

In Memoriam Carol Ann Mikols 9-9-2011 Never will forget you; Always in our hearts
In Memoriam
Carol Ann Mikols
9-9-2011
Never will forget you;
Always in our hearts

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FUNERALS

BURKE – Kenneth, funeral 9 a.m. today in the H. Merritt Hughes Funeral Home Inc., 211 Luzerne Ave., West Pittston. Funeral Mass

at 9:30 a.m. in Sacred Heart Wor- ship Center of Nativity Parish,

Duryea.

CHRISTIAN – Della, , funeral services 11 a.m. Monday in the Thomas P. Kearney Funeral Home, Inc., 517 N. Main St., Old Forge. Friends may call 2 to 5 p.m. Sunday at the funeral home. COLABELLA – Helena, funeral 9:30 a.m. today in the Stanley S. Steg- ura Funeral Home Inc., 614 S. Hanover St., Nanticoke. Mass of Christian Burial at 10 a.m. in the secondary site of St. Faustina’s Parish (St. Mary of Czestochowa Church), Nanticoke. DANKULICH – Elizabeth, funeral 10 a.m. Saturday in the Metcalfe and Shaver Funeral Home Inc., 504 Wyoming Ave., Wyoming. Friends may call 5 to 8 p.m. today in the funeral home. DEVA NEY – Mar tin, ce lebration of life 6 p.m. Saturday in McLaugh- lin’s, 142 S. Washington St., Wilkes- Barre. Friends may call 3 to 6 p.m. DOMINICK – Nancy, Mass of Chris- tian Burial 9:30 a.m. Saturday in the St. Joseph Marello Parish (St. Rocco’s R.C. Church). ELMY – Edward, military funeral 11 a.m. today in the George A. Strish Inc. Funeral Home, 105 N. Main St., Ashley. Friends may call 9 to 11 a.m. FISCHER – Theodore, Shiva 2 to 4 p.m. today at 604 Wildflower Drive, Plains Township. GERMAN – Leonard, Shiva 2 to 4 p.m. today at 445 N. Gates Ave., Apt. 1, Kingston. GULA – Catherine, funeral 10:30 a.m. Saturday in the Wroblewski Funer- al Home Inc., 1442 Wyoming Ave., Forty Fort. Mass of Christian Burial at 11 a.m. in Holy Trinity Church, Swoyersville. Friends may call 9:30 to 10:30 a.m. Saturday at the funeral home. JOHNSTON – Robert, memorial

service 11 a.m. today in the Harold

C.

Snowdon Funeral Home Inc., 140

N.

Main St., Shavertown. Friends

may call 10 a.m. until time of ser- vice Friday in the funeral home. KOLASKI – Loretta, memorial Mass

of Christian Burial 10:30 a.m. today in St. Ignatius Church, Kingston. KUSHINSKI – Christine, funeral 8:30 a.m. today in the S.J. Grontkowski Funeral Home, 530 W. Main St., Plymouth. Mass of Christian Burial at 9 a.m. in All Saints Parish, Plymouth. Friends may call 7:45 a.m. until funeral time. LEWIS – Janice, memorial service 11 a.m. Saturday in E. Blake Collins Funeral Home, 159 George Ave., Wilkes-Barre. Friends may call 10 a.m. until the time of the service. MASSAKER – Robert, funeral ser- vices 1 p.m. Saturday in the Shel- don-Kukuchka Funeral Home, 73 W. Tioga St., Tunkhannock. Friends may call 11 a.m. until the time of

services.

MINELLA – Theresa, funeral 9:30 a.m. Monday in the Louis V. Ciuccio Funeral Home, 145 Moosic Road, Old Forge. Mass 10 a.m. at the Prince of Peace Parish - St. Mary’s Church, Old Forge. Friends may call Sunday 5 to 7 p.m. MOSES – Hope, funeral 11 a.m. today in the Mamary-Durkin Funeral Service, 59 Parrish St., Wilkes-

Barre. Services at 11:30 a.m. in St. Mary Antiochian Orthodox Church,

Wilkes-Barre.

MUTH – Miriam, funeral 8:45 a.m. today in the Jacobs Funeral Ser- vice, 47 Old River Road, Wilkes-

Barre. Mass of Christian Burial at 9:30 a.m. in St. Nicholas Church,

Wilkes-Barre.

RIVERA – Abel, friends may call 10 a.m. to noon today in the Thomas

P.

Kearney Funeral Home Inc., 517

N.

Main St., Old Forge.

ROLLMAN – Florence, celebration of life 8:30 a.m. Saturday in McLaughlin’s, 142 S. Washington St., Wilkes-Barre. Funeral Mass at 9:30 a.m. in the Church of St. Nicholas, Wilkes-Barre. Friends may call 4 to 6 p.m. today at the funeral home. ROWLANDS – Chauncey, funeral noon Saturday in the Williams- Hagen Funeral Home, 114 W. Main St., Plymouth. Friends may call 9 a.m. until time of service. STUCHKUS – Florence, funeral 9 a.m. Saturday in the Mark V. Yanai- tis Funeral Home, 55 Stark St., Plains Township. Mass of Christian Burial at 9:30 a.m. in Our Lady of Hope Church, Wilkes-Barre. Friends may call 5 to 7 p.m. today at the funeral home. ZIMMERMAN – Harry Jr., memorial visitation 3 to 5 p.m. Saturday in the Wroblewski Funeral Home Inc.,

1442 Wyoming Ave., Forty Fort.

More Obituaries, Page 2A

Happy 50th Birthday In Heaven Tom Gill, Jr. March 9, 1962 ~ July 22, 2007
Happy 50th Birthday In Heaven
Tom Gill, Jr.
March 9, 1962 ~ July 22, 2007
Deeply & Sadly Missed by
Mom & Dad, Kenny,
Steve & Jo Ann and
Family & Friends

THE TIMES LEADER www.timesleader.com

C M Y K FRIDAY, MARCH 9, 2012 PAGE 11A
C
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FRIDAY, MARCH 9, 2012 PAGE 11A
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C M Y K
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PAGE 12A FRIDAY, MARCH 9, 2012

COMMUNITY

NEWS

THE TIMES LEADER www.timesleader.com

HAPPY BIRTHDAY!

THE TIMES LEADER www.t imesleader .c om HAPPY BIRTHDAY! Joshua T. Covert Joshua Thomas Cove rt

Joshua T. Covert

Joshua Thomas Covert, son of Joseph and Filomena Covert, Shavertown, is celebrating his third birthday today, March 9. Joshua is a grandson of Saverio Costantino, Hanover Township, and the late Eugenia Costantino and Robert and Helen Covert, Swoyersville.

Costantino and Robert and Helen Cove rt, Swoyersville. Phoebe E. Cowder Phoebe Elizabeth Cowder, daughter of

Phoebe E. Cowder

Phoebe Elizabeth Cowder, daughter of Susan and Joshua Cowder, Kingston, is celebrating her fifth birthday today, March 9. Phoebe is a granddaughter of Nancy and William Stricker, Kingston, and Linda and John Cowder, Dunmore. She has a brother, Owen, 2.

Linda and John Cowder, Dunmore. She has a brother, Owen, 2. Lydia E. Sutton Lydia Elynnor

Lydia E. Sutton

Lydia Elynnor Sutton, daughter of Carl and Wendy Sutton, Dal- las, is celebrating her third birth- day today, March 9. Lydia is a granddaughter of John Wagner, Pittston; the late Mary Lynn Wagner; and Carl and Andrea Sutton, Canton. She is a great- granddaughter of Ruth Celmer, Plymouth. Lydia has a brother, Floyd, 6.

of Ruth Celmer, Plymouth. Lydia has a brother, Floyd, 6. Ryan P. Nemshick Ryan P. Nemshick,

Ryan P. Nemshick

Ryan P. Nemshick, son of Pete and Megan Nemshick, West

Pittston, is celebrating his fourth birthday today, March 9. Ryan is

a grandson of Barbara Nem-

shick, Scranton, and Neil and

Carolyn Sharp, West Pittston. He

is a great-grandson of Conrad

Bauman, Meshoppen.

He is a great-grandson of Conrad Bauman, Meshoppen. Troy Kalinoski Troy Kalinoski, son of Cheryl and

Troy Kalinoski

Troy Kalinoski, son of Cheryl and David Kalinoski, Harrisburg, is celebrating his sixth birthday

today, March 9. Troy is a grandson

of Carl and Mary Ann Naessig,

Wilkes-Barre, and Felix and Rosalie Kalinoski, Throop. He has two brothers, Corey, 7, and Christian, 3.

Throop. He has two brothers, Corey, 7, and Christian, 3. Lydia G. Thomas Lydia Grace Thomas,

Lydia G. Thomas

Lydia Grace Thomas, daughter of Dustin and Nicole Thomas, Shickshinny, is celebrating her first birthday today, March 9. Lydia is a granddaughter of Bill and Rita Doughton, Edwardsville; Fred and Wendy Thomas, Shick- shinny; and Joseph and Luann Senchak, Dallas. She is a great- granddaughter of Robert Johns and the late Rita Johns, Pringle; Patricia and Abraham Thomas and Marie and Billy Frey, all of Shickshinny; and Sharon and

Robert Senchak, Larksville. Lydia

is a great-great-granddaughter

of George Stolarick, Dallas. She has a sister, Madison, 3.

and Arlington National Cemetery. For more information call Jenna at 474-5034.

MOUNTAIN TOP: The Mountain Post American Legion Auxiliary Unit 781 is hosting a brunch 10 a.m.-1:30 p.m. on Sunday.

Donations are $8 for adults stories in this year’s cam- and $4 for children younger paign film. Anyone who has

than 12. Wheelchair acces- sible parking is available in the rear of the building. This is a fundraiser orga-

nized by Jenna Neubauer to film, email the story (100 raise money for her second words or less) to in-

annual “Vets to D.C.” trip. Last year she was able to

have two buses for the trip. 237 by March 16. All in-

This year she plans to in-

clude all of the monuments dential.

formation will remain confi-

IN BRIEF

WYOMING VA LLEY: The United Way of Wyoming Valley is seeking communi- ty members to share their

been helped by a United Way program is asked to share their story. To be considered fo r the

fo@unitedwaywb.org, or call Jo hn at 829-6711 ex t.

fo r the fo@unitedwaywb.org, or call Jo hn at 829-6711 ex t. Bank supports Kirby’s Arts

Bank supports Kirby’s Arts in Education program

First National Bank (FNB) recently gave $5,000 to The F.M. Kirby Center for the Performing Arts through the Educational Improve- ment Tax Credit Program (EITC). This gift will support the theater’s Arts in Education program. The Kirby Center’s Arts in Education program includes young people’s theater series, community ou- treach, master classes, teacher arts training, artist outreach and random acts of culture. For more information about giving to the F.M. Kirby Center through the EITC Program, contact the development office at 823-4599 ext. 234. At the check presentation, from left:

Richard Dempsey, senior vice president, FNB; Marilyn Santarelli, executive director, F.M. Kirby Center for the Performing Arts; Thomas Amico, senior vice president and market executive, FNB; and Lloyd Lamm, retail president, capital region, FNB.

FNB; and Lloyd Lamm, retail president, capital region, FNB. Law association names officers, executive committee The

Law association names officers, executive committee

The Wilkes-Barre Law and Library Association, the bar associ- ation of Luzerne County, recently elected new officers and a new Executive Committee, the governing council of the local lawyers’ organization, for 2012. New officers are attorney Joseph F. Sapori- to Jr., president; attorney Elaine Cook, vice president; and at- torney Joseph P.J. Burke III, secretary and treasurer. New exec- utive committee members are attorney Matthew J. Carmody, attorney Catherine R. O’Donnell, attorney John P. Rodgers, at- torney James P. Valentine and attorney Eric W. Wassel. From left, are Rodgers, Valentine, Saporito, Cook and Burke.

From left, are Rodgers, Valentine, Saporito, Cook and Burke. Literacy program provides free books to seventh-grade

Literacy program provides free books to seventh-grade students at GAR

Seventh-grade students at GAR Memorial Junior-Senior High School recently attended a Title 1 family literacy event sponsored by the Federal Title 1 Program under the supervision of Michele A. Williams, Federal Programs/NCLP coordinator. Each student accompanied by a parent or guardian was able to select a free book. Refreshments were provided. Some of the participants, from left, first row, are Cody Dzurisin, Jonathan Seabrook, Jaeline Reyes, Sierra Quinn, Dustin Tighe and Angelo Najera. Second row: Robert Watkins, dean of students; Janelle Burcicki, Title 1 reading teacher; C.J. Potsko, learning support teacher; Heather Grebeck, school librarian; Carol Kolodziej, Title 1 math teacher; and Eric Drako, secondary English teacher.

1 math teacher; and Eric Drako, secondary English teacher. Fort Fort preps for 125th anniversary celebration

Fort Fort preps for 125th anniversary celebration

Forty Fort Borough will be celebrating its 125th anniversary June 21-24. The celebration will take place at the Luzerne Coun- ty fields and will include rides, vendors, games, music, a parade, fireworks and fun for the entire family. The anniversary commit- tee, from left, are Dave Williams, Mayor Boyd Hoats, Kristin Giordano, Cara Devine-Homza, Deborah Troy, Becky Miller, Sher- ry Yeninas, Patty Winton, Rob Naples and Frank Michaels.

ry Yeninas, Patty Winton, Rob Naples and Frank Michaels. YMCA holds carnival The Wilkes-Barre Family YMCA

YMCA holds carnival

The Wilkes-Barre Family YMCA recently held its second annual Winter Carnival. Twelve local ven- dors participated in the event. A mini-swim meet was held and everyone enjoyed the carnival games, a magic show with Ronald McDonald and great food. At the carnival, from left, Ava Yancey, a member of the child care pro- gram, and Julianne Astolfi, child care staff member, YMCA.

Max Fine Memorial 5K Race set for April 15

WILKES-BARRE: The inaugu- ral Max Fine Memorial 5K Race will be held 10 a.m. April 15. Race day registration and packet pick up will be held at the Wilkes- Barre Jewish Community Cen- ter, 60 S. River Street. The race start and finish will be at the in- tersection of West Northampton and River streets. The race is a 3.1 mile (5K) out and back course, which is inclusive for walkers, runners and wheelchair partici- pants. Post-race activities will in- clude refreshments and an awards ceremony inside the Jew- ish Community Center. All race registration fees and proceeds will benefit the Muscular Dystro- phy Association (MDA). All do- nations to MDA are tax-deducti- ble. The memorial race honors the late Max Fine of Kingston who battled muscular dystrophy dur- ing the prime of his life. Fine re- cently died due to sudden illness in June 2011 at the age of 61. The Fine family wishes to honor his life through promoting health and wellness and welcomes all to participate and support this great cause. For more information on be- coming a race volunteer, sponsor or participant, visit the race web- site at www.maxfinememo- rial5k.com, or email racedirec-

tor@maxfinememorial5k.com.

MEETINGS

Saturday

DUPONT: The Polish American Citizens Club of Elm Street, 7 p.m. at the club home. PACC active members are encouraged to attend. Refreshments will be served after the meeting.

GUIDELINES

Children’s birthdays (ages 1-16) will be published free of charge

Photographs and information must be received two full weeks befo re yo ur child’s bir thday. To ensure accurate publication, your information must be typed or computer-generated. Include your child’s name, age

and birthday, parents’, grandpar- ents’ and great-grandparents’ names and their towns of resi- dence, any siblings and their ages. Don’t forget to include a day- time contact phone number. We

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tographs that require return because such photos can become damaged, or occasionally lost, in the production process. Send to: Times Leader Birth- days, 15 North Main St., Wilkes- Barre, PA 18711-0250.

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FRIDAY, MARCH 9, 2012 PAGE 13A

SERVING THE PUBLIC TRUST SINCE 1881

Editorial

OUR OPINION: BETTER GOV’T

Officials obligated to let light shine in

T HE INTERNET seem-

ingly holds all the an-

swers, until, in all too

many cases in North-

CURSE THE DARK

Learn about Sunshine Week at www.sunshineweek.org.

eastern Pennsylvania, you want

answers

ment. When and where, for in- stance, can you attend the up- coming board meeting for the

public school district support- This year’s version of the

awareness-raising campaign starts Sunday. The campaign

copy of the school district’s “seeks to enlighten and em-

power people to play an active role in their government at all levels, and to give them access to information that makes their lives better and their communi- ties stronger,” according to its promoters. Separately, organizations

ness transpired at the last such as Virginia-based Sun-

shine Review regularly moni- tor government websites and grade them on transparency. Its most recent analysis, released Thursday, gave solid grades to

pal, county, state and federal Pennsylvania’s state govern-

ment website (www.pa.gov), two counties (Allegheny and

tivities – all supposedly con- Philadelphia), one city (Pitts-

ducted on your behalf – an open book. Ye t often people are kept in the dark. The situation should be par- ticularly troubling to residents of this region, where rampant public corruption on the part of elected officials at many levels has spawned so much shame,

governments. The technology exists in 2012 to make their ac-

board meeting? You should have easy access to the inner workings of Penn- sylvania’s public school dis- tricts, as well as your munici-

delayed economic progress and shortchanged the people. That’s why newspapers such as The Times Leader consis- tently tout “Sunshine Week.”

about your govern-

ed with so many of your tax dol- lars? Can you access an online

budget? How much money does the district – say, Lake- Lehman or Wilkes-Barre Area – spend to transport youths to sporting events? Which compa- nies consistently win contracts to supply certain services and products? What official busi-

burgh) and six school districts in the state. None of those school districts is in our area. Luzerne County residents should question whether this region’s layers of government lag in giving them the answers they seek and the online infor- mation they deserve. And if so, why?

QUOTE OF THE DAY

infor- mation they deserve. And if so, why? QUOTE OF THE DAY “The bottom line is

“The bottom line is this: If everybody paid their fair share, everybody would pay less.”

State Rep. Phyllis Mundy The Kingston Democrat intends to draft legislation

to close the “Delaware loophole,” which allows corporations doing business in multiple states to avoid paying Pennsylvania’s corporate net income tax. Her proposal also would cut the corporate tax by 30 percent over six years, beginning in 2014.

OTHER OPINION: DRONE STRIKES

Targeted killings deeply troubling

threat, there might not be time to seek judicial review of a kill order. And yet Holder’s defini- tion of “imminent threat” is ex- tremely vague, and we’re not at all sure how it applies to, say,

N OT TOO MANY de- bates were settled Monday when U.S. Attorney General Er-

ic H. Holder Jr. detailed the Obama administration’s deci-

sion-making process on target- Anwar Awlaki, a U.S. citizen

ed killings. For our part, we’re as trou- bled as ever by drone-based as- sassinations – and perhaps more concerned that this na-

tion is heading down a danger- it deems to be a terrorist, on

the soil of any country it con- siders “unable or unwilling to deal effectively with a threat to the United States.” And we’re more than a little disappointed at the way Demo- crats (including Holder and President Obama) who criti- cized President Bush’s broad assertions of presidential pow-

terrorist organization is phe- ers in the war on terrorism nomenally complex, and we have changed their tune now

certainly understand the

that a Democrat is in the White House.

ministration’s conundrum. In a situation in which a terrorist leader poses a truly imminent

Los Angeles Times

who was killed in a drone strike last ye ar in Yemen. We’re also troubled by Hold- er’s assertion that the adminis- tration is free to target anyone

ous path. We’re uncomfortable with the broad powers Holder as- serted for the president to act as judge, jury and executioner for suspected terrorists, in- cluding U.S. citizens, on the ba- sis of secret evidence. Prosecuting a war against a non-uniformed, multinational

ad-

EDITORIAL BOARD

PRASHANT SHITUT President and CEO/Impressions Media

JOSEPH BUTKIEWICZ Vice President/Executive Editor

MARK E. JONES Editorial Page Editor

Editor MARK E. JONES Editorial Page Ed itor MAIL BA G LETTERS FROM READERS How can

MAIL BAG

LETTERS FROM READERS

How can we lessen litter along roads of NEPA?

I it my imagination or is the litter in Northeastern Pennsylvania getting

s

worse?

We have quite a bit of road frontage in Hunlock Creek and are good for a half to a full garbage bag a week from all the stuff thrown out of passing cars. Discarded

instant lottery tickets, lots of plastic bot- tles, bags, beer cans and fast-food waste. You name it, people just roll down the window and throw out stuff. But it is not only here. Look at the lot next to the Mohegan Sun Arena, highway entrance ramps into Wilkes-Barre, any rural roadways; we are awash in other people’s trash. Litter laws don’t work for this type of random trash. But, then, what is the an- swer? How do you get people to recognize (or care about) what the state looks like?

I guess this letter is just a rant, but I am certainly open to suggestions. How is it that Maryland and Virginia seem so clean?

Tom Pugh

Hunlock Creek

Writer welcomes review into twins’ births at jail

I t is a sign of hope, a breath of fresh air,

to hear that the Luzerne County District

Attorney ’s Office is investigating the

death of a twin born at the prison, as this is long overdue at the Luzerne County Correctional Facility. The prison seemingly operated as an island unto itself with no accountability to the former commissioners or, more impor- tant, to the taxpayers.

James Crispell Sr. Berwick

Handling of herpes issue upsets wrestler’s parent

T he decision of primarily one local wres-

tling team and its coaches seemingly

has resulted in an unprecedented out-

break of the herpes gladiatorum virus among our conference wrestlers. It did not only temporarily postpone one wrestling team’s matches, but, in fact, irrevocably and permanently impacted other wrestlers’ lives – and one in partic- ular, my son. Sometime over the last month, my son was exposed to a live case of herpes gladia- torum. Since this type of herpes is predom- inately passed via skin-to-skin contact, one can ascertain that someone on an opposing team was still very much contagious and, therefore, exposed other wrestlers to the virus. We know where the genesis of this herpes was reportedly discovered and we

SEND US YOUR OPINION

Letters to the editor must include the writer’s name, address and daytime phone number for verification. Letters should be no more than 250 words. We

reserve the right to edit and limit writers to one published letter every 30 days.

Email: mailbag@timesleader.com

Fax: 570-829-5537

Mail: Mail Bag, The Times Leader, 15 N. Main St., Wilkes-Barre, PA 1871 1

know by now that initially it apparently was not properly addressed. My son had a sudden outbreak of herpes skin lesions only days prior to districts, making it necessary for him to withdraw from the biggest event of his life, thus far. He voluntarily withdrew because we knew. We knew and acknowledged he had a virulently contagious virus. He did the right thing. I wish everyone did. It’s called integrity. It doesn’t require too much forethought, plotting or calculation. You either have it, or you don’t.

Maria Jiunta Heck West Pittston

Restore sports teams to West Side Tech Center

I t’s that time of year again for high school

baseball and softball – ex cept at We st

Si de Career and Te chnology Center.

West Side CTC’s budget didn’t include sports. But the “sending districts” didn’t have to drop one sports program. West Side CTC needs its sports back. You keep children busy, they stay out of trouble. As far as the West Si de kids playing for their sending districts, this is a joke. You cause nothing but problems when a West Side CTC student takes the position from a “regular ” player. The kids want their own teams again. When the kids see students from other schools using their gym and they have nothing, it hurts them. We have a new committee this year that needs to do the right thing and vote to bring back sports. Maybe we can get some of our sports fans or gas companies to contribute.

Mike Jeschke

Dallas

American people tired of politicians, ‘big money’

I t seems to me that our elected politic-

ians and “big money” in this country are

doing what they want and not what the

people who elected them want. Both political parties are greedy, with the Republicans seemingly being greedier and completely out of touch with the ma- jority of the American people.

It has been said, “A free people ought

not only be armed and disciplined, but they should have sufficient arms and am- munition to maintain a status of independ- ence from any who might attempt to abuse them, which would include their own government.” When the American people finally have had enough of these corrupt politicians, price-gouging oil conglomerates and lob- byists with personal interests, there will be hell to pay. As Adm. Isoroku Yamamoto said after the Pearl Harbor attack, “I fear all we have done is awaken a sleeping giant and fill him with a terrible resolve.” Go ahead, mister politician and mister oil executive, keep sticking it to the Amer- ican people. You’ll find out what “resolve” means.

Ernest Schuldaski

Wilkes-Barre

Taxpayers’ association needed in Swoyersville

T he Times Leader ’s report covering

February ’s Swoyersville Council meet-

ing was newsworthy but deserving of

some correction. The statement made by council Presi- dent Ron Alunni that he is not aware of any complaints regarding the zoning offi- cer is far-fetched. Given the fact that the nature of this zoning position in itself is controversial, even the best operating system would naturally have complaints. Furthermore, council needs to look no further than the minutes of past council meetings. I would be happy to send them copies of the written, legitimate com- plaints that I have filed. Rest assured this council is fully aware of the problem, and it is about time that its members accept responsibility for the actions of their employees as well as their responsibility to respond to taxpayers’ complaints in a positive and forthright manner. I am hopeful that my response will not be viewed as “personal,” but instead will elicit some positive communication be- tween council and its constituents. Howev- er, as I read newspaper accounts of council meetings, I become increasingly convinced that an active citizens’/taxpayers’ associ- ation is sorely needed. The borough’s website does not provide any budget or operational information, nor does it encourage any communication with taxpayers. A taxpayer recently told me that when he requested a copy of council meet- ing minutes, he was asked why he needed them. Ta xpa ye rs and re sidents are encouraged to join an association to establish commu- nication with borough officials as well as to promote community activities and in- volvement. Interested parties can email

Swoyersville1@gmail.com.

William Coniglio

Swoyersville

MALLARD FILLMORE

volvement. Interested parties can email Swoyersville1@gmail.com. William Coniglio Swoyersville MALLARD FILLMORE DOONESBURY

DOONESBURY

volvement. Interested parties can email Swoyersville1@gmail.com. William Coniglio Swoyersville MALLARD FILLMORE DOONESBURY
C M Y K
C
M
Y K

PAGE 14A FRIDAY, MARCH 9, 2012

NEWS

THE TIMES LEADER www.timesleader.com

“I know I’m going to play basketball again this year, but I’m not so sure about soccer.” Christian also was al- lowed to sleigh ride with his friends and siblings for the first time this winter. “Ironically, we haven’t had any snow,” Fisher said with a smile. “Maybe we’ll have to wait for next year.” Fisher said Chris-

Good Shepherd Academy in tian’s body responded

Kingston who loves the out- doors, enjoys playing basket- ball, baseball and soccer and has a fondness for kielbasa. “Football’s my all time favor-

ite sport,” said Christian, who is

a l ife long Ne w Yo rk Giants fan and was recently cleared by doctors for full contact sports.

“Without the surgery he would have died,” she said. “It was a matter of days, actually.” The pioneering multiorgan transplant surgery was success- ful. Christian, who has an older brother, Jason, 16, and a young- er brother, Blake, 2, is now a thriving, active, bright-eyed 10- year-old fifth-grade student at

Continued from Page 1A

TRANSPLANT

As part of the transplant surgery, doc- tors put some of the donor bone marrow into Chris- tian’s hip and thigh so the transplant organs would be recognized.

plant organs would be recognized on a cellu- lar level and present less chance of rejec- tion. “Christian’s a shining success story for the Children’s Hospital transplant program,” Fisher said. “There are a number of people who received trans- plants as babies who are now in their 30s.” Fisher said doctors in Pittsburgh want

Christian to become more involved in his ongoing treatment and he is now respon- sible for calling in his prescrip-

well to the donor organs and he takes anti-rejection medica- tions three times a week along

with yearly trips to Pittsburgh tion refill each month.

to gauge his ongoing progress. As part of the transplant sur-

gery, doctors put some of the donor bone marrow into Chris- tian’s hip and thigh so the trans-

“He’s a normal, healthy 10- year-old,” Fisher said. “Every life is a miracle. Christian’s life needed a second miracle. We’ve been extremely blessed.”

needed a second miracle. We’ve been extremely blessed.” AIMEE DILGER/THE TIMES LEADER Blake Fisher, 23 months,

AIMEE DILGER/THE TIMES LEADER

Blake Fisher, 23 months, looks at a poster his mom, Kelly, and dad, Eric, made to celebrate his brother Christian’s re-bir thday.

But I still have to go.” Attorney Qiana Murphy Lehman said she is also willing to continue to repre- sent her clients because she is concerned

about what will happen if she and the oth- er attorneys drop out.

“If all the attorneys who did this work

neys appointed to represent parents, said stopped, the system would grind to a

he’s unhappy with the prospect he might not be paid, but he’ll continue to repre- sent his clients. “Once you are appointed, you are ap- pointed until the court issues an order let- ting you withdraw,” Pendolphi said. “If there is no money to pay me, I may end up going to court for people and not get paid.

power. Michael Pendolphi, one of the 18 attor-

Continued from Page 1A

FEES

halt,” Murphy Lehman said. “These par- ents have to be represented by some- body.” “At the same time,” she continued, “there’s only so long you can go without paying your own bills … I don’t want to see parents go without representation, but that’s what’s going to happen.”

Fund tapped out County officials budgeted $125,000 last year to pay private attorneys to repre- sent parents, but expenses exceeded that amount by more than $200,000. A Times Leader investigation revealed more than $144,000 was paid to single attorney, An- gela Stevens. Stevens has admitted she overcharged the county for travel fees, which she con- tends was an oversight. The county is seeking a forensic audit of the account, and officials have also asked law enforce- ment to launch a criminal investigation. No county or court officials have been

phone message Thursday seeking com- ment on the status of discussions regard- ing the attorney funding. Shucosky said, so far, no attorney has asked to be excused from a case due to the funding issue, “although one has indicat- ed he no longer wishes to accept any new cases.” He said it’s clear something needs to be done soon to address the issue. “We have an ethical obligation as attor- neys to represent these people and the

Robert Lawton and the county council. county has a legal obligation,” Shucosky

said. “It’s really a problem for the county. I don’t think they’ve started to address it

pressing issues. He did not return a yet.”

Lawton, who started work last week, has been dealing with a multitude of

able to explain why no funding for the at- torneys was included in 2012 budget. The controversy surrounding Stevens does not appear to have played a role, however. The budget was passed on Feb. 15. The information about Stevens did not become known until The Times Leader reported the results of its investi- gation on Feb. 24. Shucosky and President Judge Tho- mas Burke have said the funding issue has to be resolved by County Manager

POT

Continued from Page 1A

Smokes 2 Go stores at 1332 Main St., Dickson City; 1610 Route 6, Dickson City; 1255 Route 6, Dick- son City; 1114 S. Washington Ave.; 740 Oak St., Scranton; also St. Tropez, 2258 Scranton Car- bondale Highway, Dickson City; the flea market at Sugarman’s Plaza, 600 Scranton Carbondale Highway, Eynon; and P&K Nov- elty, formerly known as Jay Bee Kingdom, 512 S. Main Ave., West Scranton. Authorities arrested Patrick and Katherine Lachance, who operated P&K Novelty and resid- ed in the Bromley Avenue home, and Joseph Nataloni of Dun- more.

the Bromley Avenue home, and Joseph Nataloni of Dun- more. JASON RIEDMILLER/G OLACKA WA NNA The

JASON RIEDMILLER/GOLACKAWANNA

The Smokes R Us at 135 S. Washington Ave. in South Scranton was raided by Scranton police as part of coordinated effort by the Lackawanna County DA’s Office. Other Smokes R Us locations were also raided on Thursday as part of the coordinated action.

of the West Sc ra nton storefront , that Katherine Lachance sold a

faces charges of conspiracy to de- liver a controlled substance. It’s

marijuana to an undercover

stamped with a bio-haz- ard symbol and sold un- der the names “Flame,” “Captain America,” and

Sugarman’s, and she is expected to be charged with delivery of a controlled substance. Further details on Patrick La-

chance and Nataloni were not “Nightmare” filled two

available at press time.

tables in a conference