The Daily Item, Sunbury, PA

March 4, 2013

Cheers and jeers

Daily Item

---- — Jeers: For allowing the deterioration of the exterior of the Northumberland County Prison in Sunbury, whose walls on Wednesday let loose an apple-sized chunk of mortar that narrowly missed a pedestrian. Wednesday marked the second time in recent years that a piece of the 130-year-old lockup on North Second Street came loose. "It could have hurt someone if it fell on their head," said pedestrian Walt Holda, who said he was nearly hit by the debris. "The building is deteriorating and needs to be attended to."

Jeers: To former Shamokin Area School District substitute teacher Michael Zack, 24, of Marion Heights, who last Monday was sentenced in Northumberland County Court to six months of house arrest and must be listed on Megan's Law as a sex offender after pleading guilty in December to a felony count of unlawful contact with a minor and a misdemeanor of corruption of minors. Zack originally was charged with sending approximately 4,300 text messages to two 17-year-old and two 16-year-old girls who attended Shamokin schools at the time. Many of the messages, which were sent between March 15 and Oct. 30, 2011, contained graphic sexual material, police said.

Cheers: To the seven Bucknell University students -- among them, Anna Kell, Ann Loganbach, Jina Gillis-Rosencrans and Morgan Slade -- who last Monday participated in a "Junk Walk" to find creative uses for items that people discard.

Cheers: To the Unitarian Universalist Congregation of the Susquehanna Valley, which hopes to collect $10 from 1,500 donors to raise funds to assist Hurricane Sandy victims still on the mend in Staten Island, N.Y. "I'd be happy if we raise $10,000," said Ann Keeler Evans, UUC minister. The Unitarian Universalist Congregation has raised $9,000 to date for Sandy victims since the storm swept the East Coast in October. "We chose Staten Island partly because we could get to them, but also the UUC church there was a distribution center, and it wasn't a strictly denominational involvement," Evans said.

Cheers: To Geisinger Health System workers who have donated a record $411,320 to United Way organizations throughout the region. The health care system raised the funds during the 2012 campaign, which will benefit 29 United Way groups throughout the Geisinger service area, said Nikki Rump, coordinator of donor events and volunteer management at Geisinger and a co-chairwoman of the 2012 campaign.

Cheers: To the three Snyder County Junior Holstein Club members who were recognized for their accomplishments during the 2013 Pennsylvania Junior Holstein Convention in Erie. They are Matt Hauck, of Middleburg, Jacob Shaffer, of Beavertown, and Tabitha Hauck, of Winfield.