July 26th, 2011
By Ted Lutz
Ken VanGiesen is home again.
The body of the 30-year-old soldier killed in Afghanistan last week arrived in Kane shortly after 11 a.m. Tuesday following an emotional procession from the Bradford Airport in Lafayette Township.
An estimated 85 patriotic motorcycle riders accompanied the cortege, which included two military vans for the soldier's family and a hearse that carried the body to the Ronald McDonald II Funeral Home along South Fraley Street.
The Ridgway Area School District held a special meeting Tuesday afternoon to appoint Dr. Michael O'Brien as the new superintendent.
Dr. Tom Butler attended his last RASD school board meeting to congratulate and welcome Dr. O'Brien to his new role with the school district.
"It's been a joy, this is a great school district and I know Dr. O'Brien and his wife will be welcomed to the community," Butler said. "You will have a great time."
The board voted unanimously in favor of appointing O'Brien as superintendent, effective Aug. 9, 2011 and ending Aug. 8, 2014, at a salary of $115,000.
Andrew T. â€śTimâ€ť Bolden, 48, of 304 Maurus Street, St. Marys, died Monday, July 25, 2011 at UPMC Shadyside Hospital after an illness of the past several years.
He was born December 12, 1962 in Cumberland, Md., son of the late Donald P. Bolden Sr., who died in 1989, and Sara (Sally) Murphy Bolden, who survives, of St. Marys.
On September 17, 1983, in St. Boniface Church, Kersey, he married Ann M. Schneider, who survives.
Eugene W. Sweeney, 90, died Monday, July 11, 2011 after a short illness.
He was born February 20, 1921 to the late Thomas W. and Jane Pick Sweeney in Johnsonburg and attended local schools there.
On February 5, 1946, he married Georgia E. Smith of St. Marys in the St. Mary's Catholic Church.
Elk County Conservation District Watershed Specialist Kim Bonfardine debuted new monitoring equipment that will be used for the Elk County Monitoring Project during Monday night's regular meeting.
"I'm pretty excited as we are trying to get things going quickly because of all the equipment that is coming in," Bonfardine said.
One of the items presented was a data logger that will go directly into the waterway to measure the conductivity, flow and temperature.
Each data logger will be encased in a housing unit, built by interns, to protect it from weather and debris.
On Oct. 3, 1997, Ken VanGiesen,Â a junior,Â took Erin Sirianni, a sophomore, to the Homecoming Dance at Kane Area High School.
They've been a couple ever since.
"I was 15 and he was 16," Erin said in recalling the dance on a date that has become their anniversary. "We started dating and have been together since then. We just fit together."
A year later, they again went to the Homecoming Dance. This time as a senior, Ken was crowned as the Homecoming King. He was a three-year letterman in football at Kane High and was chosen to play center in the Big 30 Classic game in 1999.
The success of the Community Recycling Center, located in the Stackpole Complex in St. Marys, has been due, in large part, to the volunteers who keep the facility operational, according to recycling coordinator Bekki Titchner.
"That was one of the initial ideas behind this center, was that it would be a community center so people from the community would help it operate, and that's exactly what's happening," Titchner said.
Members of the Ridgway Heritage Council are in the early stages of restoring the facade of the the historic Bogert House at 105 Main St. in downtown Ridgway.
"We thought in the short term it would be a good idea to start with the front of the building because that is what you see first," said Robert Imhof of the Heritage Council.
With the restoration of the facade, Heritage Council members hope to spark more interest from potential buyers and investors.
Once purchased, Imhof hopes to see the building restored to its intended use as a hotel or hotel/apartment building.
Marinell L. Rhines, 63, of 120 W. Oilwell Street, St. Marys, died at her home on Sunday, July 24, 2011 following an unexpected illness.Â
She was born January 10, 1948 in Ridgway, a daughter of the late Richard M. Rhines and Laura Pearl Rhines Gulnac.
Marinell graduated from Ridgway Area High School.Â She was a member of First United Methodist Church, where she was
actively involved and enjoyed spending time.Â She retired from Osram Sylvania after more than 36 years of service.Â She also enjoyed crafts and spending time with her friends.
Readers who pick up Pittsburgh-based author Stewart O'Nan's latest novel, "Emily, Alone" may be surprised to find that the main character, Emily Maxwell, is described as originally hailing from Kersey, Pa.
"Emily, Alone" was published in March, and a copy is available at the St. Marys Public Library.