The Tribune Democrat, Johnstown, PA

Latest News

December 21, 2013

Top 10 of 2013 | SUV blast levels Clearfield Twp. home

PATTON — The Tribune-Democrat is counting down the top stories of 2013, as determined by voting by newsroom employees. One story will appear each day in print and e-editions between now and the end of the year. Readers can vote for their choice for the top story at www.tribdem.com/beststories.

A family home along Kepshire Road in Clearfield Township was leveled just before 9 a.m. on March 19 when a man rammed it with an SUV loaded with explosive materials and hit the detonator.

One was killed – the driver – and a father and son inside the home were injured.

Authorities identified the man as Bradley Gene Kollar, 40, of Hastings.

Sources told The Tribune-Democrat that Kollar’s actions were an act of revenge – Kollar believed it was one of the victims, William Shaner, who divulged incriminating information about him to police, leading to a March 2012 raid on the Kollar residence and his subsequent arrest.

On the morning of the explosion, Kollar was scheduled to be sentenced on charges of receiving stolen heavy equipment and possession of chemicals used to cook meth, levied after the raid. He was a no-show.

Instead, he was approaching the Shaner residence with a bomb not long after Shaner’s young children had hopped on the school bus. Kollar reportedly called the Shaner home just before the blast.

“I got you now, you snitch,” he was quoted in a search warrant as saying to Shaner.

The explosion was reportedly felt as far as four miles away, in neighboring Ashville Borough. The Shaner family’s house was almost entirely disintegrated – tufts of Fiberglas insulation, carried by strong winds, dotted homeowners’ yards and neighboring fields in all directions.

As the investigation continued, details demonstrating Kollar’s mental state were revealed, including his previous suicide attempt with a 1,600-pound ammonia bomb.

Although William Shaner and his teenage son, Ryan, were transported to Altoona Regional after the blast – William in critical condition – both recovered. Through donation drives and community funds, residents and businesses banded together to help replace what the Shaner family lost that day.

In July, Bradley Kollar’s father, John, was sentenced to six to 23 months house arrest on charges stemming from the 2012 police raid.

1
Text Only | Photo Reprints
Latest News
  • Biggest student loan profits come from grad students

    This week, the Congressional Budget Office projected that the federal government would earn roughly $127 billion from student lending during the next 10 years.

    April 19, 2014

  • Smartphone kill switches are coming

    Smartphones need kill switches. It's a relatively easy solution to the pricey (and irritating) problem of smartphone theft. But who would have thought that the big carriers would team up with Apple, Google, Microsoft, Nokia, Samsung and lots of other manufacturers to voluntarily begin adding the technology by July 2015? The cooperative spirit! It makes so much sense!

    April 19, 2014

  • The case for separate beds

    The other night I slept on a twin bed in the guest room of the house I share with my husband and our two kids.
    It was the best night's sleep I've had in years.

    April 19, 2014

  • Why do wolves howl?

    Of all the myths that dog the wolf, none is more widely accepted than the idea that wolves howl at the moon. Images of wolves with their heads upturned, singing at the night sky, are as unquestioned as a goldfish's three-second memory or a dog's color-blindness (both also myths).

    April 19, 2014

  • Raw oysters spike U.S. rise in bacterial infections, CDC reports

    Raw oysters, so good with hot sauce, increasingly can carry something even more unsettling to the stomach: A bacteria linked to vomiting, diarrhea and pain.

    April 19, 2014

  • Consumer spending on health care jumps as Affordable Care Act takes hold

    Nancy Beigel has known since September that she would need hernia surgery. She couldn't afford it on her $11,000 yearly income until she became eligible for Medicaid in January through President Barack Obama's signature health care law.

    April 19, 2014

  • VIDEO | Boston bomb scare defendant appears in court

    The man accused of carrying a backpack containing a rice cooker near the Boston Marathon finish line on the anniversary of the bombings was arraigned Wednesday. He's being held on $100,000 bail.

    April 19, 2014

  • Denne, Williams & Stanton Records hearing scheduled

    A Cambria County judge will consider complaints filed by two Johnstown residents seeking documents related to the city’s municipal waste water operation at hearing at the end of this month.

    April 18, 2014 1 Photo

  • Sen. Bob Casey Casey targets heroin

    The heroin trade has brought addiction, death, violence and theft to Johnstown and other Pennsylvania communities.
    Figuring out how to deal with those issues is difficult for local, state and federal officials.

    April 18, 2014 1 Photo

  • Drive-in to open with high-tech projector

    Drive-in movie theaters and the term “state of the art” seldom share the same sentence.
    But that will soon be the case for the Silver Drive-In, it’s owner said. The Scalp Avenue site, often marketed as a nostalgic summer night escape, soon will boast a high-end projector capable of displaying the latest and greatest blockbusters in razor sharp high-definition, theater owner Rick Rosco said.

    April 18, 2014

Poll

Do you think that Jack Williams will get the 270 signatures from city residents needed in order to have a referendum placed on a municipal ballot to have the city's pressure test mandate repealed?

Yes
No
I'm not sure
     View Results
Order Photos


Photo Slideshow

House Ads