The Tribune Democrat, Johnstown, PA

October 10, 2013

IN BRIEF | Furnace fire contained

The Tribune-Democrat

— Somerset County fire crews quickly doused a furnace fire Thursday that filled a Cairnbrook home with smoke, Somerset 911 officials said.

The small fire at 110 Beaver St. caused three people from inside the home to be treated at the scene for smoke inhalation – but none were transported or treated further, a 911 supervisor said. The incident was dispatched at 12:19 p.m. and responders cleared the scene approximately an hour later.

Trial continues in Flight 93 property dispute

 Trial is expected to continue today in a Pittsburgh federal court over whether a Somerset County property owner was underpaid for the strip mine land where Flight 93 crashed.

Michael Svonavec argues he had developed plans to build a visitors center and other tourist draws on the Stonycreek Township land, but lost it after it was claimed by the Department of Interior through eminent domain in 2009. For Svonavec’s loss, he was paid $611,000 – an amount far below the $23 million his attorney said it is worth.

A three-judge panel is presiding over testimony, which started Monday.

Basket party funds mission work

“Angels Among Us,” a basket party to fund mission work, will be held at noon Saturday in the social hall at First Lutheran Church, 415 Vine St., downtown Johnstown.

Drawings on baskets will begin at 1:30 p.m.

An $8 admission charge covers lunch, a chance on a door prize and 25 tickets for baskets.

Tickets are available at the church office.

Additional basket tickets, which are 25 for $5, will be sold at the door.

Information: 536-7521.

Laps of Light Walk set for Sunday

The Laps of Light Walk to benefit Camp PARC will be held from 4:30 to 7:30 p.m. Saturday at Conemaugh Township Area High School Memorial Stadium, 300 W. Campus Ave., Davidsville.

Gates open at 3:30, and the final laps will take place after sunset with participants carrying lighted candles.

Laps of Light is a fundraising walk that anyone can participate in without any special training.

Walkers collect donations based on their participation in the walk, so it is not based on number of laps or time walked.

Prizes will be awarded to the teams and individuals who raise the most donations.

Last year 650 participants raised more than $26,000 for Camp PARC and its programs.

In addition to the walk, there will be a cornhole tournament, carnival games, face painting, photo booth and raffles.

Boss Frog from Froggy 95 will serve as the master of ceremonies, and food will be available for purchase from the Thomahawk Grill.

Camp PARC (People Always Responding with Compassion) is a nonprofit organization that creates recreational and social opportunities for children and adults with mental and developmental disabilities through its residential summer camp held at Laurel Hill State Park in Somerset.

Information: 248-3149 or

Railroad exhibit salutes veterans

Trains, patriotism and history will be on display from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. Saturday as Amtrak and Norfolk Southern host “All Aboard Altoona” at Norfolk Southern’s Rose Yard in Altoona.

Amtrak’s exhibit train, pulled by a custom-painted veterans locomotive, will be available, as will special Norfolk Southern rolling stock such as its own veterans locomotive, an F-Unit locomotive, exhibit car and historic office cars.

Visitors will be able to explore Amtrak’s exhibit train displays, which include workable signals, virtual sleeping accommodation tours, a locomotive control stand and horns, and displays about the 42-year history of the passenger rail service.

The event is free and open to the public. Free parking will be available across from Norfolk Southern’s Juniata Locomotive Shop at 200 N. 4th Ave. and free shuttle services will transport visitors from the parking lot to Rose Yard.

No parking is available at Rose Yard.

Custom Lego creation to be auctioned

Johnstown resident Paul Boratko is once again auctioning off another one of his Lego creations, the Vampire GT “Daywalker,” with all proceeds going to benefit 7-year-old Johnstown resident Brayden Yorchak, who recently had a brain tumor removed and is undergoing radiation treatments.

The eBay auction will run through 5 p.m. Sunday.

The link to the auction is

For more information on Brayden visit the Brayden’s Gang Facebook page at

In February, Boratko auctioned off his Lego Pittsburgh Steelers-themed supercar and it sold for $1,160 on eBay.

The money raised was donated to the local chapter of Make-A-Wish Foundation.