The Tribune Democrat, Johnstown, PA

Editorials

May 3, 2014

Laurels and barbs

JOHNSTOWN — Laurel: Senior citizens in Johnstown want to remain on the go, so they have started a fundraiser to buy a passenger van to transport them to eductional, social and cultural outings. Members and staff of Johns-town Senior Center will solicit funds for the vehicle. Donations can be dropped off at the senior center or mailed to: Johnstown Senior Center of Cambria County, 550 Main St., Johnstown, Pa. 15901.

Laurel: Portage Area School District’s superintendent has receive a prestigious honor. Rich Bernazzoli was named “Educator of the Year” by The Challenge Program Inc. The program partners with businesses to motivate students in their schoolwork and social life. Bernazzoli has been involved with the program since 2003.

Laurel: A volunteer who teaches watercolor painting to residents of Arbutus Park Retirement Community has been honored. Bonnie Luther was named the outstanding senior volunteer leader during the first Senior Spirit Awards recently. Also feted were volunteers with Conemaugh Regional Hospice and Triple J of Paks Karate.

Barb: A western Pennsylvania woman didn’t let an ailment interfere with her alleged illegal activities. Lori Sullenberger faces drug charges after police accused her of selling heroin from the intensive care unit and her hospital room at Excela Westmoreland Hospital, Greensburg. Hospital security alerted law enforcement officials after they noticed a lot of visitors flowing in and out of her room.

Laurel: Herb Sitton likes to help others. His used his electrical skills to wire the Greater Prospect Co-op Store. For that, the retired electrician was honored with the Volunteer Spotlight Award by Lift Johnstown. The award recognizes individuals for their contributions to the community.

Laurel: The Cambria County War Memorial Arena’s books have been balanced. All its bills have been paid and all monies owed have been collected. “Our rolling forecast, right now, we’re under budget for the entire fiscal year, which we’re very proud of,” Karen Gregorchik, assistant general manager, told the War Memorial Arena board.

Barb: A lead radiological technologist at an Atlanta-area hospital has pleaded guilty to falsifying mammography readings. Rachael Rapraeger said she became indifferent to her duties and gave 1,300 patients a clear reading. But 10 of those patients had lumps or cancerous tumors in their breasts. She was sentenced to serve time at a detention center and fined $12,500.

Laurel: A DUI Victim Permanent Memorial has been dedicated at Somerset County Technology Center, a reminder that too many people are still getting behind the wheel while under the influence. “The one thing about DUI is it’s a preventable crime,” state Trooper Stephen Limani told the assembly. “It’s a decision that someone makes.” The memorial was sponsored by the technology center’s Students Against Drunk Driving chapter.

Laurel: A “walk out” has been scheduled at Windber Area School District. But it’s not a work stoppage. It’s an effort to conquer obesity among young people. The two-mile walk on Graham Avenue is slated for May 18 and is the brainchild of Patti Simanski, a weight-management consultant who is conducting an exercise program in the district.

Barb: A Blair County resident is out $500,000 after being scammed in a phony prize scheme. The woman told police that a male with a Jamaican accent would call her, sometimes 20 times a day, requesting money so she could claim her prize. State police are urging residents, especially senior citizens, to beware of phone and mail scams and to report any suspected scams to authorities.

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