The following news articles appeared on news media websites across Ohio today. Appearance on this website does not indicate endorsement by OSBA of any editorial or news item. OSBA does not filter the news, but simply posts educational news sent to us by pressrelations.com. To go directly to a specific category, click on the “Category” box, below.

Bernie Kosar: “He picked us” (Vintage Browns excerpt #2) — Terry Pluto

Excerpted from the book Vintage Browns, © 2021 by Terry Pluto. Reprinted with permission of Gray & Company, Publishers. Available at Northeast Ohio bookstores and from TerryPlutoBook.com.

CLEVELAND, Ohio – It began with Bernie Kosar.

Younger Browns fans sometimes wonder why there is so much reverence for a former Browns quarterback who never led the team to the Super Bowl, much less won one.

But to focus on the lack of a championship is to miss the real story. That’s the same mistake many people make when assessing the past by looking through the windshield of today rather than the rearview mirror of history.

Before Bernie Kosar arrived in 1985, the Browns had been to the playoffs only twice in the previous 12 years — losing both times. They had not won a playoff game since 1969.

But the troubles in Cleveland were more than the football team losing. Consider this from a Sports Illustrated story of Aug. 25, 1985, before Kosar played his first regular season game with the Browns:

Things are not always so idyllic in Cleveland, as you may know. Indeed, a case can be made that things are never idyllic in Cleveland. We are talking about a town that a Miami reporter says escaped being the most boring city in the NFL only because they let Indianapolis in. But stop it. The Mistake on the Lake. Stop it. A place where the river caught on fire. Stop it. A city that has the Indians. Stop it. Those were the bad old days B.B.—Before Bernie.

Kosar was aware of all of this because he was one of us. Still is.

Grew up in Youngstown a Browns fan. Went to some games as a kid. Dreamed of one day wearing an orange helmet in the NFL.

“When I came to the Browns, our area was still the butt of national jokes,” said Kosar. “The Cuyahoga River caught on fire. The city was bankrupt. The unemployment. In Miami, I heard all that. I shrugged it off, but it bothered me.”

Kosar knew the Browns having a winning team wouldn’t change the social and economic problems, but it would be an emotional lift for the city.

“I kept thinking I could go back there and do something about all the negative stuff,” said Kosar. “I could help my family have security, and I could play for my favorite team. This was a childhood dream and I could make people happy who loved the Browns.”

Kosar paused.

“I can make a difference,” he said. “That’s what I was thinking about coming home to the Browns.”

And Kosar didn’t simply wait for the Browns to draft him, he found a way to make it happen.

As Browns fans from that era love to say, “He picked us.”

HE WAS JUST KID

“Do you realize when the Browns drafted me, I was only three years out of (Youngstown) Boardman (High)?” said Kosar.

The year was 1985. Kosar, along with his advisors and former Browns GM Ernie Accorsi, had found an unprecedented road to Cleveland.

“I was only 21,” said Kosar. “I had just finished my second season at the U.”

Kosar was talking about the University of Miami, where he led the Hurricanes to a national title in 1983.

“I loved being at the U,” said Kosar. “I was always slow and skinny. I didn’t anticipate being a pro player. The goal was to get a degree. My father had me taking advanced placement courses in high school so I could get college credits. That’s what it was about in the beginning.”

Kosar didn’t play as a freshman. He was red-shirted behind Jim Kelly, a future Hall of Famer. The next two seasons, Kosar beat out Vinny Testaverde and became a star.

“This was when the NFL had a rule against drafting players unless they were seniors,” said Accorsi. “But there also was a little known part of the rule. A player could be eligible for the draft if he graduated.”

Kosar joked, “I was one of the few guys who regularly attended class.”

He didn’t just go to class, he did the work. He was studying finance and economics. He was taking extra courses in the summer.

“I was cranking through 18 (credit) hours a semester and playing football,” said Kosar. “I love math. I could do it in my head. I heard what my teachers told me and I had the ability to remember it.”

When the 1984 college football season ended, Kosar had a plan for 1985. Not the NFL, but staying at Miami. He’d graduate, then go for his master’s degree. He was named an Academic All-American with a 3.27 GPA in his dual major of Economics and Finance.

“We were going to be loaded,” he said. “I could see us winning national titles in 1985 and 1986 if I stayed. My thinking was, ‘These are my brothers. This is my calling.’ Back then, no one left early for the NFL. It wasn’t even discussed.”

COMING TO CLEVELAND

In Cleveland, GM Ernie Accorsi had been hired as an assistant to Browns owner Art Modell on March 5, 1984. Coach Sam Rutigliano was running the team, assisted by Bill Davis.

“I had very little say in personnel,” said Accorsi. “But I told Art and everyone else there that we weren’t going to win with Paul McDonald at quarterback.”

Modell, Accorsi said, was enamored with Doug Flutie, a star at Boston College who upset Kosar’s Miami team.

“Bernie’s the guy I want,” Accorsi told Modell.

Accorsi had scouted Kosar. He knew the quarterback had piled up college credits at a remarkable rate. He began plotting to bring Kosar to Cleveland, using the graduating early loophole.

“My father had been picking my college classes,” said Kosar. “After the season, my father had it laid out for me to take 18 credits in the spring, six more in the summer. Then I could graduate.”

His parents had become aware of the early entry draft rule.

“I wasn’t very receptive to it,” said Kosar. “I wasn’t even sure if the class I needed to graduate would be available in the summer.”

But something else was happening.

“My family worked at U.S. Steel,” said Kosar. “For so many years, we were laborers and it was a great job. But the mills started closing down in the 1970s. The jobs disappeared. I saw that as a little boy.”

And Kosar knew what it meant. If he turned pro, there would be money. Millions. It would be a game changer for his family.

“I was wrestling with the feeling of responsibility,” said Kosar. “I was thinking that going back to The U, we’d win the national title. I’d probably win the Heisman Trophy. But was I being selfish?”

He had several meetings with his family and others. Finally, Kosar decided.

“I’d like to play for the Browns,” he told his father. “That’s what it would take to get me out of Miami.”

PREVIOUS VINTAGE BROWNS EXCERPTS

The Browns of the late 1980s were so much more than The Drive & The Fumble

In his new book “Vintage Browns” (softcover $16.95 / 208 pages / ebook $9.99), Terry Pluto recalls favorite players from Cleveland Browns teams of the 1970s, ’80s, ’90s and beyond, including Bernie Kosar, Ozzie Newsome, Brian Sipe, Marty Schottenheimer, Doug Dieken, Greg Pruitt, Kevin Mack, Bill Belichik and others from days when the “Kardiac Kids” and the “Dawgs” played at Municipal Stadium.

TERRY PLUTO will be signing copies of Vintage Browns Tuesday at 6:30-7:30 p.m. at the Learned Owl Bookstore in Hudson.

Cleveland Plain Dealer
Published 16 hours ago

Celebrate the joy of music with “Harmony” on CRAFT IN AMERICA – Dec. 10 at 9:00 pm

< < Back to

Craft in America

“Harmony”

Friday, December 10th, 2021 at 9 pm

HARMONY bridges the art forms of music and craft, celebrating the joy of music and the creation of handcrafted instruments.

Featured in this episode
Susan Lipkins is a highly respected bowmaker who specializes in bass bows. Her handcrafted, made-to-order bows now have a waiting list of ten years, as she only completes ten bows in a year. Susan’s expertise earned her a Gold Medal at the Violin Society of America’s 2012 competition – the first and so far only woman to be so honored. Although she studied the bass, she gravitated toward bow making and apprenticed under some of the best bow makers in the world. She takes particular pride in addressing the concerns of the musicians who will use her bows.
“I enjoy working with my clients to make a bow for them that will compensate for any shortcomings of their individual bass, such as a sound that is too bright or too dark or too sluggish.”
In Woodstock, New York, Susan shares a workshop with her husband, David Wiebe, a maker of fine stringed instruments: violins, viola, cellos and basses.. Her clients are in a wide range of celebrated orchestras including the Pittsburgh Symphony, the New York Philharmonic, and the Scottish BBC Symphony Orchestra to name a few.

Doug Naselroad is the founder of the Appalachian School of Luthiery, Director of the Troublesome Creek Stringed Instrument Co., and a master luthier who specializes in the mountain dulcimer. Naselroad has been making stringed instruments since 1969. After opening Naselroad Guitars in Mt. Sterling, KY in 1979, Doug developed a signature line of stringed instruments and door harps that have been sold around the world. In 2012, Doug was selected as the Appalachian Artisan Center’s Master Artist in woodworking, and he founded the Appalachian School of Luthiery located on Main Street in Hindman, KY, where he leads the Culture of Recovery Program, an apprenticeship for those recovering from opioid addiction. Those who study instrument making with him at the Culture of Recovery program have said that this opportunity is providing them with a new, positive outlook on life. Some of the graduates go on to become luthiers, and many take the ability to master a skill into other occupations.
Naselroad specializes in the mountain dulcimer; an instrument which originated in Hindman, Kentucky in the late 19th century. The mountain dulcimer, with its curved silhouette and heart-shaped sound holes is as beautiful as it is musically authentic, and crafting one is a complex construction process involving precise cutting, shaping, carving, and tuning.

With a career that spans over 40 years, Richard Jolley is one of today’s most accomplished glass sculptors. His figurative work uses organic forms to explore the breadth of the human experience; from the body to nature to science. Born in Wichita, Kansas, Jolley moved to Oak Ridge, Tennessee in his youth. He has continued to call East Tennessee his home, even making the unconventional decision to establish his glass studio in Knoxville in 1975. Jolley began his fine art studies at Tusculum College in 1970 and later completed his BFA at George Peabody College (now part of Vanderbilt University). He has participated in over 64 solo museum and gallery exhibitions across the country and internationally, and his work is included in the collections of several prominent institutions including the Carnegie Museum of Art, Corning Museum of Glass, Knoxville Museum of Art, Los Angeles County Museum of Modern Art, Museum of Fine Arts, Boston, and the Renwick Gallery of the Smithsonian American Art Museum, Washington, DC.

In May 2014, Jolley’s steel and glass masterwork Cycle of Life: Within the Power of Dreams and the Wonder of Infinity, opened at the Knoxville Museum of Art. Five years in the making, Cycle of Life is one of the largest figural glass assemblages in the world. The installation is composed of thousands of blown glass and steel elements and symbolically depicts six successive phases of life: Primordial, Emergence, Desire, Tree of Life, Contemplation, and Sky. “It’s a figurative range of people and nature,” Jolley says. “The question was how to distill the life cycle to fit the space and answer the questions: Who are we? Where are we? Where do we come from? Where are we going?”

WOUB 89.1 (Cambridge)
Published 16 hours ago

With omicron looming over the holidays, here's how to stay safe

Here we go again.

Just when you thought it was safe to go back to almost normal times, a new, highly mutated variant of the coronavirus has reared its ugly head in the U.S.

Scientists say it's still too soon to know whether the omicron variant causes more or less severe disease, though early evidence does suggest it's better at evading the immune system than previous strains. And, omicron has raised several red flags that suggest it could be the most transmissible variant yet.

All this has many people wondering whether it's time to change our behavior for safety's sake.

The good news is, you don't have to hibernate like it's 2020. Experts note we're in a much different place than we were last winter, with COVID-19 vaccines and boosters now widely available. There's good hope that the current vaccines offer protection against severe disease with omicron.

That said, if this pandemic has taught us anything, it's that when you don't know what you're dealing with, "we should invoke the precautionary principle," says Dr. Abraar Karan, an infectious disease physician at Stanford University.

In other words, don't panic, but do be thoughtful about what risks you want to take.

We spoke to several infectious disease experts for advice on living in the age of omicron. But remember: Things are changing quickly, so stay alert. Public health advice may change as we learn more.

Should I be masking again indoors, even in places where masks are not required?

If you're not vaccinated, mask up indoors — and please, get your shots, experts agree. For the vaccinated, you should be wearing masks if you are at higher risk of severe disease because of your age or underlying health conditions — or if you spend time with people who are vulnerable. We know that vaccines aren't always as protective among older people and the immunocompromised.

"The things that we've gotten tired of doing, we need to keep doing, especially masking up in indoor places," says Dr. Tom Frieden, former director of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

That advice would hold true even without the omicron variant, says Dr. Monica Gandhi, an infectious disease specialist at the University of California, San Francisco, "because we still have [delta] cases circulating in this country."

While you don't generally need to wear a mask outdoors, it makes sense to if you're in a crowd and you don't know the vaccination status of the people around you, said Dr. Julie Vaishampayan, chair of the public health committee of the Infectious Disease Society of America, during a media briefing Thursday.

Do I need to upgrade to N95, KN95 or similar highly protective mask?

While three-ply cloth masks or surgical masks do a good job at preventing the wearer from spreading infectious particles if they fit snugly, and offer the wearer some protection as well, many experts think it would be better to use an N95 or KN95 respirator in crowded indoor public spaces.

This is especially key if you're high risk. "If people around you aren't wearing masks and you are older or you have a weakened immune system, then you should consider upping your mask game and using an N95 mask," says Frieden.

Stanford University's Karan suggests people with other underlying conditions that put them at higher risk — such as obesity, lung disease or poorly controlled diabetes — should also consider upgrading to a high-quality N95 or KN95 mask.

And, if you live with people who are at-risk, consider upgrading your mask as well, Karan says. Double masking with a surgical mask topped by a cloth mask will also boost your protection, notes Gandhi.

Should I cancel my holiday travel plans?

Not necessarily just yet, but do be very thoughtful about them, says Dr. Henry Wu, director of Emory TravelWell Center and an associate professor of infectious diseases at Emory University School of Medicine. "Anyone who's thinking of traveling should pause and consider both your own risk, as well as certain other practical issues about your destination."

For starters, the U.S. is now requiring all travelers entering the U.S. from a foreign country, including Americans returning home, to be tested for the coronavirus no more than one day before departure. If you're in another country, you'll have to make sure you know where to get a test that qualifies within that time frame, which could be a logistical headache.

And remember, the situation on the ground is changing, so keep a watch on the CDC's travel notices. "You certainly want to avoid traveling to countries that are in the midst of a surge and potentially have overwhelmed health systems. You certainly don't want to risk needing to go to an overcrowded hospital if you have your own health problems, COVID or not," Wu says.

Domestic travelers aren't required to test before flying, but it's still a good idea to do so before departure and after arrival — especially if you are visiting someone in a high-risk group. That's what Wu plans to do when he visits his elderly parents in Hawaii next week. "I will, even though it's not required, test myself before my trip and I think I'll bring some self- test kits when I get home, just to be even more sure that I'm not infectious at that time," he says.

If you're unvaccinated, over the age of 65 or have medical conditions that put you at higher risk of severe disease with COVID-19, you should seriously reconsider if now is a good time to travel, Wu says.

And of course, if you do fly or take public transport to your destination, wear a high-quality, snug-fitting mask like an N95 or KN95.

With all the concern that omicron might evade our vaccines, should I bother to get a booster?

The Biden administration came out this week urging people once again to get a booster to help protect against omicron. The recommendation is in line with recent science showing that boosters raise your antibody levels.

A recent preprint study even showed that getting a third dose of the mRNA vaccines could "generate a much broader immune response," says Dr. Kavita Patel, a nonresident fellow at the Brookings Institution and a primary care physician. This could give broader coverage against a variant like omicron she says, "which is why I think you're hearing a number of us, many doctors, public health folks, scientists saying boosters do matter."

Paul Bieniasz is a virologist at Rockefeller University who studies how the immune system response broadens over time, and he concurs. "I'm somebody who's been vaccinated three times, and I think that that's absolutely the right way to go," he says.

"I think anyone who is around immunocompromised individuals should absolutely be ensured that they boost," Gandhi says. "I was actually not going to get a booster because I was protesting global vaccine equity. And I just received one because I need to be around my immunocompromised father."

Is it safe to have a large, indoor social gathering, like a holiday party? Should guests all test in advance?

Safety is important, but so is gathering with loved ones at this time of year, and there are steps you can take to lower the risks for everyone. "What we need to do is add more layers of protection," says Vaishampayan.

First, says Karan, make sure everyone present has gotten a COVID-19 vaccine and booster shot if they're eligible.

If you have access to rapid antigen tests, have your guests take one, especially if they're traveling from other parts of the country. "That's a great way to prevent somebody who is infected from coming in and infecting somebody else," Dr. Carlos Del Rio, an infectious disease specialist at Emory University, told reporters this week.

As Karan notes, "testing is really a snapshot in time," so make sure guests test the day of the actual gathering if at all possible. That's because if a person was just exposed and the virus is still incubating, a person can test negative one day and positive the next.

Rapid antigen tests aren't cheap, however. Even the most inexpensive one will cost you around $12 per test — if you can find one. The Biden Administration this week announced plans to address that: People with private health insurance will now be able to get reimbursed for the cost of at-home tests, and health clinics will offer free tests to the uninsured. In the meantime, if you have to ration, Gandhi suggests prioritizing testing anyone who isn't vaccinated or is vaccinated but showing symptoms.

If the weather allows, it wouldn't hurt to move the party outdoors, says Vaishampayan. At the very least, think about ways to improve ventilation indoors — by opening windows as temperatures allow, for example.

And if you're a guest who's immunocompromised, keep toward well-ventilated areas and mask up unless you're eating or drinking, Gandhi says. Or consider skipping large gatherings, says Karan. "If you have a high risk person at home, this is probably not the time to have a large gathering because vaccines here don't completely stop transmission, they just reduce the chance it can happen," Karan says.

Should I hold off on dining indoors at restaurants?

There's not a clear-cut answer for everyone or every situation, says Wu. "I really just assess each situation individually," he says. You should consider transmission levels in your community, whether there's good ventilation, and most of all, your risk level or that of people you live with or spend time with.

Wu says when he has a social appointment at a restaurant, "I quickly assess how crowded it is, how good is the ventilation, and if it seems risky, and I can pass, I certainly will."

Karan says if you really want to play it safe, skip the indoor dining until scientists know more about omicron. If you do decide to dine indoors, he says get boosted for added protection. But his best advice? "Be conservative right now."

Copyright 2021 NPR. To see more, visit https://www.npr.org.

WCBE 90.5 FM - Columbus
Published 16 hours ago

COVID-19 hospitalizations rise in Hancock County

Dec 04, 2021 6:00 AM

Hancock Public Health reported no new COVID-19 deaths this week. However, “every other indicator is still high,” including hospitalizations, which “almost doubled” since last week, Health Commissioner Karim Baroudi said Friday.

Baroudi said Thanksgiving gatherings may be playing a role in the recent numbers. Hancock Public Health has been getting calls from community members saying they had gathered with family for the holiday and then someone tested positive.

As Christmas approaches, Baroudi stressed that it is possible to safely gather with friends and family, but we must be careful how we go about it.

When he goes out in public, Baroudi said he observes “very minimal mask wearing,” which concerns him. He encouraged people to wear masks, regardless of vaccination status.

“People are tired, and that’s understandable,” he said. But the virus is not tired of us.

By the numbers

In its updated weekly COVID-19 dashboard on Friday, Hancock Public Health reported 344 new cases of the virus this week. While no new deaths were reported, there were 38 new hospitalizations of county residents.

Since the pandemic began, 173 Hancock County residents have died of COVID-19 and 808 have been hospitalized.

An average of 57.3 new cases per day were reported this week, with 15.67% of tests coming back positive. The incidence of the virus was 471.08 cases per 100,000 people. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention defines high incidence of the virus as 100 cases or more per 100,000 people in a two-week period.

As of Friday, the health department recorded 490 active cases of the virus, Baroudi said. An active case means the person is under quarantine or in isolation.

Of these, 148 people — or 30.2% of active cases — were fully vaccinated; while 342 people — 69.8% — were not. The active cases range in age from 3 weeks to 98 years old. Fifty-two of them — 10.6% of the active cases — were school-age children.

Forty Hancock County residents were hospitalized with COVID-19 as of Friday. This includes 36 at Blanchard Valley Hospital, three at Ohio State University and one at Mercy Health — St. Rita's Medical Center, Lima.

In November, the health department recorded 1,378 total cases of the virus, of which 348 were breakthrough cases, meaning people who got the virus after being vaccinated. This means 25.25% of November’s cases were breakthrough, up from 19.64% in September and 23.79% in October.

Throughout the pandemic, the health department has recorded 998 total breakthrough cases. Of these, 42 have been hospitalized. Nine individuals have died after getting breakthrough cases.

Six individuals have gotten breakthrough cases after receiving their booster dose, making up 0.06% of the total breakthrough cases. One individual has been hospitalized after having received their booster.

These figures indicate 95% of the county’s hospitalizations and 95% of its deaths have been unvaccinated people.

A total of 38,285 Hancock County residents — 50.52% of the population — have received at least one dose of vaccine. And 35,367 — 46.67% of the county population — are fully vaccinated. Of this group, 28.89% have gotten their booster shots.

About 10% of Hancock County’s children ages 5-11 have received at least one dose of vaccine, Baroudi said. He noted the health department is seeing higher uptake in children ages 5-9 than 10- and 11-year-olds.

Tools like boosters

The first people to have gotten their booster shots are now well past the two weeks it takes to gain full protection, Baroudi noted. (Hancock Public Health’s first mass booster vaccination clinic was Nov. 9.)

He said if only one county resident who received their booster shot has ended up hospitalized, that’s an indication that the booster is working.

But prior to getting the booster, people’s immunity may be waning, which may indicate why the percentage of breakthrough cases has increased from one month to the next, he said.

Baroudi said the health department is still seeing “robust interest” in booster shots. But what is “still concerning” is that the number of people newly getting their first dose of vaccine remains low. The percentage of county residents vaccinated is increasing, but that increase is very slow.

“We’re trying everything” to reach people, Baroudi said. “We want to make it convenient for people.”

He said it may be seen as an individual's personal responsibility to protect their family and loved ones, “especially around the holidays.”

Despite the high case numbers, Baroudi said the community is now in a better place than it was a year ago as far as “how prepared we are” and “the tools we have.” We know a lot more about the virus than we did last fall, he said.

So, he said, we need to use the tools we have. He gave as an example long-term care facilities, where virus rates were soaring earlier in the pandemic but are now mostly under control.

“We can control it, if we use the tools we have,” he said.

Arthurs: 419-427-8494

Findlay Courier
Published 16 hours ago

It Happened in Crawford County: A life of service for Paul Altstadt Jr.

Mary Fox

Columnist

Paul Altstadt Jr. was born and raised in Mansfield. His junior high teacher advised “if you ever want to learn something, then teach it.” Paul took drafting and engineering classes and graduated from Mansfield Sr. High in 1971. He joined the Air Force and Ohio Air National Guard in 1971 and served until 1982. He taught avionics at Kessler AFB in Mississippi. Vietnam was winding down in that profession, so he stayed on as a teacher. He took their classes and if you had good proficiency, they kept you. He taught many nationalities who bought their systems how to repair the aircraft and keep them running. After two years, he went back to Ohio Air Guard in Mansfield where he finished his time at Mansfield Lahm Airport.

Air Guard is weekends only, so Paul also worked full time as a policeman in Crestline. In 1976 Paul married Diane Jones who was born in Alaska, a daughter of William Jones who was in the Air Force. After William got out of the military, they moved to Crestline where he worked at PPG. The Altstadts had two children, Brandon and Andrea, and when they were 5 and 6, Paul and Diane began taking foster children from 1978 to 1983.

Being a policeman, Paul started seeing people for who they really were, witnessing the good and the bad. He "got saved" when he was a policeman and began approaching all his contacts with people by making decisions based on biblical standards. This approach worked out well. For instance, whenever there was a death on his watch, he became involved with the family. He also worked with a lot of the kids in the area and the different school programs offered to them. The city also had programs for children that Paul could help with. The biggest program he became involved in was the children needing foster care.

Paul left the Crestline Police Department in 1983 and moved to Winchester, Kentucky, where he found a job working in electronics in Lexington. He also joined the Kentucky Army National Guard where he taught nuclear biological and chemical warfare. While living there, Paul and Diane got involved with special needs children and they helped with that program for five years. About that same time, his father, Paul Sr., was getting ill and they moved back to Ohio. Diane joined EMS at Central Ohio Ambulance and became a paramedic in 1986. Paul became a paramedic in 1987 for the same company in Galion where he was the Galion Division manager; and they both became paramedic instructors.

The life of a paramedic offers strange working hours, and during those 16 years the Altstadts eventually left their faith and sought their own lifestyle. They essentially just stopped going to church, but the work as paramedics ended in 2000 when the ambulance service was sold. Paul ended up working at Conagra at the Marion Popcorn Company. They also renewed their faith at this time, and Paul accepted the call to the ministry. Diane also became very involved in the ministry.

Some years ago, Paul had studied religion while in college. This time, from 2001 to 2005, he made the decision to begin taking courses online according to the rules of the Independent Baptist Church. It involved a two-year mentorship where you sit with a pastor and study under him. When finished, one can become a licensed pastor. In 2008 he started "pulpit supply" and interim pastorships, including the Bucyrus Potter’s House Baptist Church in 2009. He served there seven years, and then spent two years visiting 45 denominations in the area to learn about their services and what everyone was preaching and teaching.

On one occasion, Paul made the mistake of sitting in someone else’s seat; that was a definite no, no. He took it upon himself to question various members about their faith. He wanted to know what the individual believed; he knew what the doctrine said, but he wanted personal answers. The majority of the people said they didn’t question their pastor and, more often than not, they attend a church and believed in its ways because that’s the way it’s always been for them.

Rev. Altstadt became the pastor of Antioch Christian Church north of Bucyrus at 3158 Carrell Road in 2019. The church began with only two families meeting at Pastor Paul’s home and as they started growing, they bought the old Jehovah Witness Building. They are doing great as an independent Christian Church that teaches the fundamental truths and that accepts God’s reality, not men’s. Paul and Diane are both retired now, and they spend many hours in their work. They feel the "gist of everything" is to ask questions and realize that God has never changed. As a side note, Paul also writes Hometown Sermons for the Crestline Advocate that is usually published once or twice a month.

bucyrustelegraphforum.com
Published 16 hours ago

Lorain Schools students sick with COVID-19 get care packages delivered to their doorsteps

Dec 04, 2021 6:00 AM

LORAIN — A reminder that their school is thinking of them has been showing up on the doorsteps of Lorain students who are recovering from COVID-19.

As part of a new partnership between Lorain Schools and El Centro de Servicios Sociales, students who are home sick with the virus have been receiving deliveries of “COVID care baskets” to help them and their families during their illness.

Inside the baskets are health supplies like face masks, hand sanitizers, disinfecting wipes, paper towels, disposable gloves, toilet paper and cough drops. But they also include puzzles, a coloring book, crayons or colored pencils and other items to keep the students occupied while on the mend.

The district’s internal contact tracing team reports weekly how many students are home after testing positive for COVID-19, according to Erin Graham, Lorain Schools’ director of communications and community engagement.

El Centro drops off the materials needed for the baskets, and they are assembled by members of the Lorain Schools communications staff.

Lorain Schools safety compliance officers Carmen Ransom and Micah Gibbs then take a drive around town, dropping off the baskets at the homes of students who are infected. As of Friday, they had delivered 28 baskets, and El Centro has committed to providing a total of 200.

One of the boxes delivered Friday went to the home of Samson Gordon, whose entire family is sick with COVID-19. His stepdaughter Isabella Casper is in fifth grade at Larkmoor Elementary School and missed the entire week of class due to the virus.

“It’s nice to be thought of at a time like this, or even have somebody show any kind of consideration,” Gordon said. “My daughter had more joy out of it, because to her, she feels tremendously awesome that the school even reached out to her.”

Gordon said Isabella had been fighting off boredom while recovering at home, and the crayons included in the basket were like an early Christmas present to her.

Some of the families were in tears when they received their basket because someone thought of them during their time of illness, Ransom said.

"So many in our community have lost loved ones to the pandemic, and it's just terrifying to have your child test positive,” she said. “I think it's a wonderful gesture for our families to know their community and schools care about them and want them to get well, to be well.”

The project came about when El Centro’s COVID Care Team supervisor, James Darnell, contacted Lorain Schools’ Intercultural Communications Coordinator Waleska Soto with the idea. Soto works closely with El Centro in various capacities to serve students and families, Graham said.

Describing the project to local officials last week during a meeting of the Lorain County Community Protection Team, Darnell said the care baskets also include health information for families, and the response has been great so far.

Back

Elyria Chronicle Telegram
Published 17 hours ago

New book examines history of University of Mount Union

Paige Bennett
The Repository

ALLIANCE – Harry Paidas didn't just write a book about the most important moments in the last 25 years of the University of Mount Union's history.

He was usually in the room when they happened.

The 69-year-old, who graduated from the university in 1974, spent 33 years working at Mount Union, where he held the positions of chief public relations officer, director of the Regula Center for Public Service and Civic Engagement, and faculty member in the department of communication.

More:No trick: Mount Union treat event raise record food donation

More:Area college: Mount Union's Braedon Poole named OAC Men's Basketball Player of the Week

In the summer of 2020, President Thomas Botzman asked Paidas to author a book detailing major events that took place at Mount Union since 1996 in light of the university's 175th anniversary this year.

Professor Emeritus Bill Coleman and Dodie Davis, former director of alumni engagement, were asked by Botzman to serve as editors.

"It was really helpful to know the background of some of the decisions that were made having been there and knowing the presidents as well as I did," Paidas said.

His book, entitled "Make the Echoes Roll," will be released sometime in the coming months. It is the third work to be written about the university's history and is preceded by "Wake the Echoes" by John Saffell and "A Select School: The History of Mount Union College" by Newell Yost Osborne.

Ryan Smith, director of academic marketing at Mount Union, said in an email that no date has been set for the release of the book, which is being published by the school. The cost and details about how to purchase a copy are expected to be announced later.

"Make the Echoes Roll" highlights different aspects of Mount Union's recent history, including the decisions of university presidents, the success of the football program and how the implementation of new majors and programs shaped the institution.

"Because I lived it, I still had recollections of what happened during those 25 years and what the important points were in that timeframe, so I just started writing," Paidas said. "My background is that I was an undergraduate English major, and I have a master's in journalism."

After Paidas wrote about the history he could recall from memory, he went through his work and identified places where he needed to find sources to support the information. He consulted old copies of Mount Union's alumni magazine and student newspaper, notes from various council and board meetings, and interviewed people who were present at the time.

The book's chapters are divided by presidential terms. Additionally, the book includes a section focused on the university's athletic programs.

"I don't think anybody's going to realize how significant (football) has been until maybe this dynasty ends. This rise in football created such a positive atmosphere at Mount Union in many ways," Paidas said.

Mount Union's football program has seen tremendous success since the early 1990s. The Purple Raiders have won 13 national championships since 1993.

The success of the program, Paidas said, put a national spotlight on the university, helping increase student enrollment and draw attention to the university's academic programs. The liberal arts school has about 2,100 students.

Paidas also said the university expanded its offerings in the 2000s to incorporate more math and medicine-oriented programs.

"That really changed the face of the institution," he said. "In fact, this kind of shocked me as I wrote this, the No. 1 major at Mount Union currently did not even exist in 2013, and that was nursing."

Paidas anticipates the book will be sent to the printer sometime this holiday season and hopes it will be available for purchase soon after.

Reach Paige at 330-580-8577 or pmbennett@gannett.com, or on Twitter at @paigembenn.

Massillon Independent
Published 17 hours ago

Massillon Independent Difference Maker: Wendy Snyder, Fairless Elementary

The Independent

NAME – Wendy Snyder

SCHOOL – Fairless Local-elementary

RESIDENCE – Navarre

AGE – 53 years young

JOB TITLE – Head cook

HOW LONG WITH DISTRICT – 18 or 19 years.

FAMILY – Husband, Kent; daughters Brooke (Nathan) and daughter Jayna (Chris); son Chad (Tiffany); and five grandbabies.

NOMINATION – "Wendy has been part of our Fairless kitchen family for 19 years. This past year, Wendy took on the Managers position at the Elementary. Wow what a year to be thrown into that position. With her experience she came through it with flying colors & managed to lead her team through the challenges that presented themselves daily. Wendy enjoys living life and is always off on an adventure with her family!"

WHAT IS THE MOST REWARDING PART OF YOUR POSITION? – Seeing all the beautiful faces of the kids coming thru the breakfast/lunch line and working with a bunch of awesome co-workers.

WHAT IS THE MOST CHALLENGING? – Right now with the pandemic, ordering the food and supplies needed.

IF YOU WEREN'T DOING THIS, YOU'D ... – ... be probably a horse trainer, if a was younger. I love horses and have one of my own.

TELL US SOMETHING ABOUT THE STUDENTS YOU DEAL WITH THAT MOST PEOPLE DON'T KNOW OR APPRECIATE? – That most of the students appreciate the kitchen staff feeding them daily and they do that by saying “please” and “thank you.”

HOW DO YOU UNWIND AFTER A LONG DAY AT WORK? – An adult beverage … lol.

STUDENTS AND COWORKERS WOULD BE SURPRISED TO KNOW THAT YOU ... – ... have a black belt in TaeKwonDo from years ago.

WHAT IS ONE RESPONSIBILITY ABOUT YOUR POSITION THAT YOU DIDN'T KNOW EXISTED BEFORE TAKING IT? – All the paperwork that is involved, and the quick decision-making.

Massillon Independent
Published 17 hours ago

Plain Township's New Home Church adopts infant safety as mission project

Charita M. Goshay
The Repository

PLAIN TWP. – Tina Ramnarine says she'll never forget being part of a "Code Pink" response team tasked with trying to resuscitate a lifeless 2-month-old rushed to Aultman Hospital after the baby had been accidentally smothered while co-sleeping with an adult.

The 20-year nursing veteran has taken up the cause of safe infant sleep as a personal passion and as a faith mission.

Ramnarine is spearheading an effort by the New Home Church to collect donations to purchase Halo SleepSacks to give to families of babies born at Aultman Hospital.

More:Church offering diabetes wellness care in its new location

"Our church has been mission-driven," she said. "I did not realize this church was going to be this generous...I was overwhelmed by the generosity. I didn't know what to say."

New Home Church's SleepSack effort

So far, the nondenominational church co-founded by Benny and Suzanne Griffiths in 2018 has raised $10,800, which it has used to purchase 1,500 SleepSacks.

That's halfway to the church's goal of $20,000.

"What this stemmed from, our church being a small church, we do a lot of mission outreach work," Suzanne Griffiths said.

Griffiths, a lifelong early-childhood educator, said the project fits in perfectly with the church's purpose.

"It takes a village, it really does," she said.

Taking on unsafe sleeping practices in Stark County

Ramnarine, who has worked in pediatrics, neonatology, and the birthing center at Aultman, noted that every three days, a baby in Ohio dies from unsafe sleeping or SIDS (sudden infant death syndrome). Stark County is one of the top three counties for unsafe sleeping.

"The goal is babies sleeping on their backs," she said.

The SleepSack makes that possible for infants too young to roll over by "swaddling" them in place.

Ramnarine said the push to place infants on their backs to sleep emerged in the mid-1990s, which resulted in a correlation in the decline of SIDS-related deaths.

Benny Griffiths, the church's lay leader and a retired Massillon City Schools educator, said the New Home Church is inspired by Jesus' words in Matthew 25:40 compelling believers to care for "the least of these."

"Our church has focused all of its efforts on meeting the needs of children and students," said Griffiths, who noted that the New Home Church has also donated to AIM Academy and Canton Calvary Mission. "We have a saying a New Home Church, 'We are blessed to be a blessing.'"

Ramnarine said that approximately half of the 2,700 babies born at Aultman every year are born to low-income families who can't always afford to buy a SleepSack, which costs about $22.

The goal, she said, is for every baby discharged to go home in a SleepSack, "and hopefully educate and raise awareness in our community."

The church is seeking $1,000 in donations from 10 large churches.

The Aultman Foundation also has lent its support to the mission.

"These are the smallest, most vulnerable members of our community," Ramnarine said. "If I can send parents home with something that helps their baby, I've reached my goal."

To donate, checks may be sent to Ramnarine with "Safe Sleep" in the memo and mailed to 3442 Enfield Ave. NW Canton, OH, 44708, or visit:

aultmanfoundation.org/home/giving/choose-your-good/safe-sleep/

Reach Charita at 330-580-8313 or charita.goshay@cantonrep.com

On Twitter: @cgoshayREP

Massillon Independent
Published 17 hours ago

Gorrell students team up to author, illustrate book about animals

Amy L. Knapp
The Independent

MASSILLON – Did you know that orangutans live 50 to 60 years? Or that their diet consists mainly of leaves and fruit?

Those are just some of the facts that Gorrell students Melody Accetta and Madalynn Kemp learned while researching the animal.

"They look like monkeys," 5-year-old Melody said.

She is a student in Eileen Sirgo's kindergarten class. Madalynn, 9, is a third grader in Tammy Sorensen's class.

Sirgo's and Sorensen's classes joined together to write and illustrate a book about animals they might see on a trip to the zoo.

More:Massillon middle school student fulfills writing dream, publishes first book

More:WHS construction trade students, Habitat partner to give single-mother a new home

On Friday, the students got their first look at the finished project during a reveal party.

"On Our Trip to the Zoo" features original artwork and stories about the animals created by the students.

Trip to the zoo

After receiving a flyer in the mail from Studentreasures Publishing, a company that provides free tools to help young authors create their own books, Sirgo thought why not give it a try.

"After the year we had, it seemed like the right thing to do this year," the kindergarten teacher said.

The company provided everything they needed to write their book, including examples of published books. The only cost was the purchase of the finished book.

Working with kindergartners, Sirgo decided to team up with older students to create the content. She turned to fellow teacher Sorensen. The two had taught third grade together before Sirgo moved to teach the youngest learners four years ago.

The kindergartners partnered with a third grader. They had a month to observe and collect facts about an animal as well as create artwork for the book.

Their literary journey began with virtual field trips to zoos across the world. From there, they picked an animal they would like to be the focus of their story.

The students then watched live camera feeds of their animals in the zoo to learn more about their creatures.

For Melody and Madalynn, they learned orangutans like to sleep during the day.

"All it does is sleep during the day," Madalynn said. "It was kind of boring."

Changing to another zoo's live camera, the pair found another orangutan more interesting.

The primate was using a saw to cut a piece of wood.

"That was the best part," Melody said laughing.

After gathering their research, the students put their heads together to write a paragraph about their animals.

Each story began with "On our trip to the zoo we might see ... ." The kindergarten student finished the paragraph with a conclusion sentence, Sirgo said.

The youngsters continued their partnership creating an illustration to go with their paragraph. The third grader drew the animal and habitat, and the younger student colored the picture.

Besides having a little fun, the project incorporated a number of lessons including reading and writing, art and science, Sirgo said.

The students also learned about the process of making a book and the things that make up a book such as a table of contents, spine and title page.

The project also has forged lasting bonds between the students.

"They look for each other in the hallway," Sorensen said. "It's been a lot of fun."

Teaming up with each other is nothing new for Sorensen and Sirgo. The teaching pals have done reading buddies with their students since Sirgo moved to kindergarten.

"We just took it to the next level, Sorensen said.

During the reveal party, the students got to see the book. The older students read the passages to their kindergarten counterparts. The book brought smiles to the kids' faces.

"We are very proud of you," Sirgo told the students. "It looks beautiful. You are now published authors."

The student book even has its own ISBN — international standard book number — a unique ID for publications.

"It was a lot of fun," Madalynn said of the process, adding her favorite part was working with her partner Melody. "It was pretty cool."

The students also enjoyed a doughnut and milk to celebrate the release of the book.

The book is available for purchase for $23.99. Anyone interested can contact the teachers for details. A copy will be presented to the school next week to be placed in the school library, Sirgo added.

"Will we do this again?" Sirgo asked. "I'm pretty sure. I've already had a student's mother say she can't wait until her other child gets to do it as a kindergartner."

Reach Amy at 330-775-1135 or amy.knapp@indeonline.com

On Twitter: @aknappINDE

Canton Repository
Published 17 hours ago

Plain Township's New Home Church adopts infant safety as mission project

Charita M. Goshay
The Repository

PLAIN TWP. – Tina Ramnarine says she'll never forget being part of a "Code Pink" response team tasked with trying to resuscitate a lifeless 2-month-old rushed to Aultman Hospital after the baby had been accidentally smothered while co-sleeping with an adult.

The 20-year nursing veteran has taken up the cause of safe infant sleep as a personal passion and as a faith mission.

Ramnarine is spearheading an effort by the New Home Church to collect donations to purchase Halo SleepSacks to give to families of babies born at Aultman Hospital.

More:Church offering diabetes wellness care in its new location

"Our church has been mission-driven," she said. "I did not realize this church was going to be this generous...I was overwhelmed by the generosity. I didn't know what to say."

New Home Church's SleepSack effort

So far, the nondenominational church co-founded by Benny and Suzanne Griffiths in 2018 has raised $10,800, which it has used to purchase 1,500 SleepSacks.

That's halfway to the church's goal of $20,000.

"What this stemmed from, our church being a small church, we do a lot of mission outreach work," Suzanne Griffiths said.

Griffiths, a lifelong early-childhood educator, said the project fits in perfectly with the church's purpose.

"It takes a village, it really does," she said.

Taking on unsafe sleeping practices in Stark County

Ramnarine, who has worked in pediatrics, neonatology, and the birthing center at Aultman, noted that every three days, a baby in Ohio dies from unsafe sleeping or SIDS (sudden infant death syndrome). Stark County is one of the top three counties for unsafe sleeping.

"The goal is babies sleeping on their backs," she said.

The SleepSack makes that possible for infants too young to roll over by "swaddling" them in place.

Ramnarine said the push to place infants on their backs to sleep emerged in the mid-1990s, which resulted in a correlation in the decline of SIDS-related deaths.

Benny Griffiths, the church's lay leader and a retired Massillon City Schools educator, said the New Home Church is inspired by Jesus' words in Matthew 25:40 compelling believers to care for "the least of these."

"Our church has focused all of its efforts on meeting the needs of children and students," said Griffiths, who noted that the New Home Church has also donated to AIM Academy and Canton Calvary Mission. "We have a saying a New Home Church, 'We are blessed to be a blessing.'"

Ramnarine said that approximately half of the 2,700 babies born at Aultman every year are born to low-income families who can't always afford to buy a SleepSack, which costs about $22.

The goal, she said, is for every baby discharged to go home in a SleepSack, "and hopefully educate and raise awareness in our community."

The church is seeking $1,000 in donations from 10 large churches.

The Aultman Foundation also has lent its support to the mission.

"These are the smallest, most vulnerable members of our community," Ramnarine said. "If I can send parents home with something that helps their baby, I've reached my goal."

To donate, checks may be sent to Ramnarine with "Safe Sleep" in the memo and mailed to 3442 Enfield Ave. NW Canton, OH, 44708, or visit:

aultmanfoundation.org/home/giving/choose-your-good/safe-sleep/

Reach Charita at 330-580-8313 or charita.goshay@cantonrep.com

On Twitter: @cgoshayREP

Canton Repository
Published 17 hours ago

Sports betting in Ohio: Should it happen, and if so, who benefits? Editorial Board Roundtable

Key legislative leaders in Ohio’s effort to legalize sports betting have reached agreement on what state Rep. Bill Seitz calls a “conceptual framework” for a compromise bill that’s now being drafted. The language would then be added to House Bill 29, which has become the vehicle for a sports betting law, although it started out life as a veterans’ ID bill. HB 29 could then be voted on by a conference committee and then by both chambers as soon as next Wednesday, when both the Ohio House and Senate are scheduled to meet.

What’s in the conceptual framework? Seitz in a phone call Thursday afternoon with the editorial board spelled out how some of the key disputed issues were being resolved:

* Who will regulate sports betting? The Ohio Casino Control Commission that oversees casinos and racinos, and that was also given primary regulatory oversight in Senate Bill 176, which passed the Ohio Senate 30-2 last June. The Ohio Lottery Commission will have the marketing role in self-serve sports betting at bars, bowling alleys and the like.

* Who benefits? This is where the compromise seems to have wrought the biggest changes to SB 176. There will be 25 type A licenses for mobile betting by phone -- each of which can translate into up to two “skins” or vendor contracts, with a $7 million premium for the second skin. These can be applied for on an equal footing by both existing casinos/racinos and the state’s 10 professional sports teams and sports associations (like NASCAR). This sets Ohio apart from some states, according to Seitz, but appears to have gotten the teams on board.

There will also be 40 type B brick-and-mortar licenses that also will likely go primarily to existing casinos/racinos and the teams. Seitz says experts expect 90% of betting to happen on the mobile platforms.

Finally, there will be an unknown number but likely thousands of type C licenses for self-serve sports-betting kiosks with existing lottery agents -- limited to venues that serve alcohol on the premises, along with state liquor stores in grocery stores.

* Who gets the proceeds? Most of the profits will go to schools, both public and private (a change from Lottery practice, which per constitutional language only benefits K-12 public education). A small slice will go toward helping problem gamblers.

*Will betting on college sports be allowed? Yes. Ohio colleges and universities are alarmed at the prospect; but SB 176 allowed it and so does the conceptual framework, according to Seitz.

* Will there be online sports betting, too? No, Seitz said.

Sports betting in Ohio looks like a done deal, although some on our Editorial Board Roundtable might disagree that it’s a good or a wise deal. But is this the right set of rules? Our roundtable weighs in.

Thomas Suddes, editorial writer:

Gambling is a business in which the house, in the aggregate, always wins. So long as everyone understands that, no harm done. Still, given that two other forms of legal betting in Ohio -- the Ohio Lottery and Ohio’s four city casinos -- required a vote of the people to become legal, you have to wonder why sports betting apparently won’t be a ballot issue for Ohio’s voters to judge.

Ted Diadiun, columnist:

I don’t care who wets their beak from state-sponsored sports gambling, to appropriately use the mafia term. It’s a terrible idea to abandon principle for profit, no matter who profits. Legalized gambling will tempt players to cheat, entice more people to bet money they don’t have, and diminish fans’ faith in the games. Everyone loses.

Eric Foster, columnist:

Sports betting should be allowed in Ohio. It has been legal in several other states and I can’t recall any huge point-shaving scandals. Now it appears the battle is over how to split the money pie. I appreciate Rep. Seitz’s efforts towards fairness, but we know how this ends. Big business wins. Small business loses.

Victor Ruiz, editorial board member:

Gambling in Ohio seems very complicated, and I am unsure how the public benefits from all the money that is made. Regardless, this is what the people want. Gambling on college sports is concerning, so I hope that there are policies against college trustees, employees, etc. gambling on their institutions’ games.

Lisa Garvin, editorial board member:

Legalized sports betting in Ohio is inevitable, but I remain hesitant about legitimizing wagers on college sports teams. Since the legislation would make it ridiculously easy to bet by allowing self-serve kiosks in thousands of Ohio bars and liquor stores, I also worry that we’ll be adding to the ranks of gambling addicts.

Mary Cay Doherty, editorial board member:

Since sports betting aligns more with casino gambling than lottery games, oversight by the Casino Control Commission seems logical. And the revenues should benefit Ohio’s students regardless of whether they attend public or private schools. But college sports betting will hasten professionalization of college athletics which, in turn, will have significant repercussions for higher education.

Elizabeth Sullivan, opinion director:

Sports betting is inevitable in Ohio but its proceeds should benefit public education, not private schools.

Cleveland Plain Dealer
Published 17 hours ago

Dear Annie: It’s ok to let go and trust your kids

Dear Readers: Thank you for all your responses to “Letting Go Is Hard to Do.” We have undeniably wonderful parents among our readership. Here are two of my favorite letters.

Dear Annie: This is in response to “Letting Go Is Hard to Do,” who was worried about the choices her daughter might be making at college after seeing a questionable bank transaction.

I am also the mom of a college-age student. We have had a joint account ever since my son was a senior in high school.

I made a promise to myself to not allow our joint checking accounts to be a way to peek into his world. Trust me, it is very hard not to look -- especially when I am transferring money to his account. If his spending info pops up, I look away and put my hand over so I cannot see.

It is a don’t-see-don’t-tell trust that I never told him I had in place. He is very independent, and if I’d have questioned things, he would have started to mistrust me. There is always a way teens get around roadblocks; it’s called taking cash out of the account and spending it that way or buying a Visa gift card with the cash.

It gets easier as they get older to not look. I encourage you to think about why you need to look at how she spends her money. My son was no angel for a good four to five years. But he trusts me now, and when the really hard/big things come up, he comes to me for comfort and direction, and to ease his fears. Let a little more of the string go, and when your bird flies, you will be rewarded with trust and honesty. -- Money and Trust

Dear Annie: I want to be as polite as I can in this reply to the mom who’s concerned about her 18-year-old daughter essentially just being an 18-year-old away at college.

With all due respect, Letting Go -- because you sound like a great mom and you seem to have a good bond with your daughter -- maybe drop the “God’s gift” talk, stop thinking about what your religion teaches about birth control and just ask your kid if she’s OK and let her know you’re there to talk.

She may not be as interested as you are in what God and your religious community’s leadership thinks about her sex life. Meanwhile, here on Earth, you’re both humans who love each other. Lead with that.

In terms of sex addiction and so-called addictive behaviors, aka symptoms of a disease called addiction, which aren’t “behaviors” in an addict but rather compulsions, again, be honest. Talk about it head-on. Don’t minimize it if you’re truly worried.

And if you’re not, let her live her life and keep your opinions to yourself. You can either have a relationship that is close, honest and real or have some mix of hope, denial and religious idealism. But the half-measure of trying to have both almost guarantees the first will be lost, which would be a shame.

Keep your life between you and God, her life between you and her, and trust God to know how to handle the rest. God is too busy caring for billions of souls to really care much about birth control and sex toys. Take God’s lead. -- Dad of a Teen, Too

A look back at some of this year’s most-popular Dear Annie columns

Dear Annie: I haven’t been able to look at my wife the same since I learned of her past sexual history

Dear Annie: My husband has a wandering eye and it bothers me

Dear Annie: How do I tell my wife that I want a divorce?

Dear Annie: I wish I had known about my husband’s affair

Dear Annie: I’m a married man in a complicated relationship with a married woman

“Ask Me Anything: A Year of Advice From Dear Annie” is out now! Annie Lane’s debut book -- featuring favorite columns on love, friendship, family and etiquette -- is available as a paperback and e-book. Visit http://www.creatorspublishing.com for more information. Send your questions for Annie Lane to dearannie@creators.com.

COPYRIGHT 2021 CREATORS.COM

Cleveland Plain Dealer
Published 17 hours ago

Gorrell students team up to author, illustrate book about animals

Amy L. Knapp
The Independent

MASSILLON – Did you know that orangutans live 50 to 60 years? Or that their diet consists mainly of leaves and fruit?

Those are just some of the facts that Gorrell students Melody Accetta and Madalynn Kemp learned while researching the animal.

"They look like monkeys," 5-year-old Melody said.

She is a student in Eileen Sirgo's kindergarten class. Madalynn, 9, is a third grader in Tammy Sorensen's class.

Sirgo's and Sorensen's classes joined together to write and illustrate a book about animals they might see on a trip to the zoo.

More:Massillon middle school student fulfills writing dream, publishes first book

More:WHS construction trade students, Habitat partner to give single-mother a new home

On Friday, the students got their first look at the finished project during a reveal party.

"On Our Trip to the Zoo" features original artwork and stories about the animals created by the students.

Trip to the zoo

After receiving a flyer in the mail from Studentreasures Publishing, a company that provides free tools to help young authors create their own books, Sirgo thought why not give it a try.

"After the year we had, it seemed like the right thing to do this year," the kindergarten teacher said.

The company provided everything they needed to write their book, including examples of published books. The only cost was the purchase of the finished book.

Working with kindergartners, Sirgo decided to team up with older students to create the content. She turned to fellow teacher Sorensen. The two had taught third grade together before Sirgo moved to teach the youngest learners four years ago.

The kindergartners partnered with a third grader. They had a month to observe and collect facts about an animal as well as create artwork for the book.

Their literary journey began with virtual field trips to zoos across the world. From there, they picked an animal they would like to be the focus of their story.

The students then watched live camera feeds of their animals in the zoo to learn more about their creatures.

For Melody and Madalynn, they learned orangutans like to sleep during the day.

"All it does is sleep during the day," Madalynn said. "It was kind of boring."

Changing to another zoo's live camera, the pair found another orangutan more interesting.

The primate was using a saw to cut a piece of wood.

"That was the best part," Melody said laughing.

After gathering their research, the students put their heads together to write a paragraph about their animals.

Each story began with "On our trip to the zoo we might see ... ." The kindergarten student finished the paragraph with a conclusion sentence, Sirgo said.

The youngsters continued their partnership creating an illustration to go with their paragraph. The third grader drew the animal and habitat, and the younger student colored the picture.

Besides having a little fun, the project incorporated a number of lessons including reading and writing, art and science, Sirgo said.

The students also learned about the process of making a book and the things that make up a book such as a table of contents, spine and title page.

The project also has forged lasting bonds between the students.

"They look for each other in the hallway," Sorensen said. "It's been a lot of fun."

Teaming up with each other is nothing new for Sorensen and Sirgo. The teaching pals have done reading buddies with their students since Sirgo moved to kindergarten.

"We just took it to the next level, Sorensen said.

During the reveal party, the students got to see the book. The older students read the passages to their kindergarten counterparts. The book brought smiles to the kids' faces.

"We are very proud of you," Sirgo told the students. "It looks beautiful. You are now published authors."

The student book even has its own ISBN — international standard book number — a unique ID for publications.

"It was a lot of fun," Madalynn said of the process, adding her favorite part was working with her partner Melody. "It was pretty cool."

The students also enjoyed a doughnut and milk to celebrate the release of the book.

The book is available for purchase for $23.99. Anyone interested can contact the teachers for details. A copy will be presented to the school next week to be placed in the school library, Sirgo added.

"Will we do this again?" Sirgo asked. "I'm pretty sure. I've already had a student's mother say she can't wait until her other child gets to do it as a kindergartner."

Reach Amy at 330-775-1135 or amy.knapp@indeonline.com

On Twitter: @aknappINDE

Massillon Independent
Published 17 hours ago

The Good Life: Nonprofit in memory of Canal Winchester teen does $1 million worth of good

Allison Ward
The Columbus Dispatch

Brock Johnson was always the smallest kid on the baseball diamond or football field, but he never let his short stature hold him back.

Still, the steroids he took for a rare autoimmune disease he’d battled since he was a baby caused the teen to grow slower than his teammates.

His mother Kristi Johnson said she recalled asking a doctor once how they should wrap the medical port Brock had so her son could play football as a middle schooler. The doctor simply replied: Kids like him don’t play football.

“But he played everything,” Johnson said. “And he was amazing at everything. If you ever watched him play, you remembered him.”

Whether it was through his athletic talents or his big heart, Brock left an impression on the Canal Winchester community, where his family lives. When he died in 2015 at the age of 14 of complications from a bone marrow transplant more than 4,000 people showed up for his funeral.

It was proof to Brock's parents that there was still more to do with his legacy.

BrockStrong Foundation carries on Brock Johnson's memory

“When we got to the memorial service and 4,000 people were there, we looked at each other and we couldn’t let him stop there,” his mother said. “He was only 14, and he touched all these people. What would he have done if he lived to be 100?”

That question is at the heart ofthe BrockStrong Foundation.

It started as a way to grieve in the months following his death and use a $1,500 donation that was supposed to go to Brock's recovery. But it has turned into efforts than have given $1 million to those in need in central Ohio and beyond.

The Johnsons, including Brock's father, Terry, andolder brother Tucker, 23, gave away their millionth dollar – for a Yosemite trip for a sick teen – last month on what would’ve been Brock’s 21st birthday.

“We try to do things that are super meaningful, but also something that would make the average person feel good,” Kristi Johnson said.

The Good Life: Blacklick woman starts anti-bullying organization to empower youths

Donations focus on three areas: Nationwide Children’s Hospital, traveling baseball and community. Community, she explained, pretty much means encompasses anyone who might need “a little Brock love.”

That includes picking up grocery bills for people at Kroger, installing a fitness center at an inner-city school and renovating bedrooms for sick children. They’ve paid mortgages and daycare bills, planned Christmas for an orphanage and stocked a local food pantry.

About three years ago, the foundation donated boxes of toiletries and other basic needs to David’s Way and Canal Village, apartment complexes in Canal Winchester that serve low-income seniors.

“With seniors, this is a tremendous cost savings for them,” said Avonne Bennett, service coordinator for the properties. “Plastic bags, laundry detergent, toiletries – those are all very expensive.”

Since then, the BrockStrong Foundation (brockstrongfoundation.com) has become a lifeline for David’s Way and Canal Village residents whenever they might need something, Bennett said.

“We had a gentleman they helped with rent assistance,” she said. “Right now, not a lot of resources exist or they have a waiting list or their waiting list is full. This prevented someone from being homeless.

The Good Life: West Jefferson teen honors father, raises $130,000 for cancer research

“I think it’s amazing how much they’ve touched the Canal Winchester community," Bennett said. "They take care of everybody.”

From Robert Downey, Jr. to lonely seniors, Brock Johnson struck up friendships, touched lives

Terry Johnson said it’s been incredible to watch how neighbors, acquaintances and even strangers have felt compelled by Brock and his story to give generously.

Not only do people show up in droves for the foundation’s two annual, marquee fundraising events – a spring golf outing and a Labor Day baseball tournament – but they’ll also do their own random acts of kindness in Brock’s name. The Johnsons print cards reading “You’ve been B-Rocked” for people to leave when they’ve paid for someone’s dinner or given an unexpected gift.

“This couple we met on vacation, we talked to them for five or 10 minutes – and it’s not like we say right off we lost a child – but we got to talking and they sent us $2,500 last week,” Terry Johnson said.

Then there's the $10,000 contribution from actor Robert Downey, Jr.

In the months before his death, Brock and the movie star known for playing Iron Man (Brock’s nickname) struck up a friendship, facilitated by a friend of a friend. The two FaceTimed regularly, and they met in person in Los Angeles the month before Brock died.

The actor still keeps in contact with Brock's parents, even leaving them a voice message in May on the anniversary of Brock’s death.

“I don’t think he intended to continue to have this relationship with this sick kid,” Kristi Johnson said about the actor. “But that was because of Brock … If you knew him, you loved him.”

His father described Brock as someone who never met a stranger.

“At 8 or 9 years old, he could carry on a conversation with a 3-year-old or an 80-year-old,” Terry Johnson said.

The Good Life: Powell woman diagnosed with young-onset Parkinson's commits to advocacy

While Brock was sick, Carmen Boyd, of Zanesville, followed his story on social media as it was documented by Kristi Johnson. Never could she have imagined that years later she’d be on the receiving end of some “Brock love.”

When Boyd's young daughter Brinley was receiving chemotherapy at Nationwide Children’s Hospital for leukemia in 2018, Kristi Johnson brought her gift cards and presents.

“Then they called a few days later and said, ‘We want to buy lunch for you,’” Boyd said. “Tucker played his guitar for Brinley.”

Even though Brinley, now 10, is in remission, the BrockStrong Foundation still helps her family. This summer, with Boyd’s husband out of work, the Johnsons gave her a $5,000 check to help pay their mortgage.

However, Boyd said it’s the emotional support and love she’s felt from the couple that have had the largest impact. When Brinley was particularly sick and no visitors were allowed, Kristi Johnson sent a Nationwide Children’s employee she knew to their room to pray with Boyd.

“He came and sat in Brinley’s room for two hours,” Boyd said. “The most important thing BrockStrong did for me was not monetary. They’re amazing people, who have turned the biggest tragedy in life to a positive spin for so many people.”

Helping other parents of sick children and those who have lost children also has been a big part of the BrockStrong Foundation. Kristi Johnson said one of her long-term goals with the organization is to buy a cabin in a place like Hocking Hills where families dealing with pediatric illnesses or death could go for comfort.

“This is one way we’re dealing with it (Brock’s death),” she said. “We took a terrible situation, and we’re doing the best we can.”

Running the nonprofit, at times, is a welcome distraction for the Johnsons, but mostly it’s a way for them to feel close to Brock and honor the life he lived.

“To continue his legacy, that’s the greatest thing he gave us,” Terry Johnson said. “Brock continues to have a much bigger legacy than Kristi and I will ever have.”

award@dispatch.com

@AllisonAWard

The Good Life

Twice a month, we profile a central Ohioan (or a group of central Ohioans) whose actions make the world a better place.

Coshocton Tribune
Published 17 hours ago

Business briefs: Avita honored by Pioneer, AgCredit podcast

Mansfield News Journal

Pioneer honors Avita Health System as the Business Partner of the Year

SHELBY — Avita Health System was named Pioneer’s 2020 and 2021 Ralph Phillips Business Partner of the Year. This prestigious award is given to an area business that has demonstrated support for Pioneer Career and Technology Center and its programs, students and alumni. It was renamed in 2010 in honor of the late Ralph Phillips, president and owner of Phillips Manufacturing and Tower Company, the first recipient of the award.

Avita Health System has been a great partner for Pioneer’s high school and adult education medical program students. They have allowed students to shadow in multiple areas and given them a firsthand look at what happens at the hospital daily. Externships in phlebotomy help Adult Education students earn their certifications as well. Avita employees also serve on several of Pioneer's advisory committees.

Avita Health System is a locally governed, patient-centered, integrated health care system that has grown from approximately 450 employees to over 1,800 employees who provide patient care in Crawford and Richland counties.

Pioneer Career and Technology Center has been providing quality career-technical education to high school juniors and seniors for over 50 years. Pioneer serves over 1,100 students from 14 partner schools enrolled in over 35 career tech programs and offer adult education programs and training.

AgCredit debuts new podcast

FOSTORIA — AgCredit, a cooperative agricultural lending institution, announced the launch of its new podcast, AgCredit Said It, about all things rural living.

The podcast brings together a team of experienced ag lenders dedicated to serving the rural community as they interview experts from across the agriculture industry.

The show focuses on topics such as how new borrowers can build a strong relationship with their lender, how to prepare year-end financials for farm operations, and the benefits of cooperative lending. The podcast is geared toward beginning farmers and seasoned professionals alike and releases new episodes every first and third Monday of the month.

To listen to the podcast, visit AgCredit.net or your favorite podcast app.

Mansfield News Journal
Published 17 hours ago

Aspiring rapper and Mansfield native Reno Money performing on Nickelodeon tour

Mark Caudill
Mansfield News Journal

Reno Money has gotten a taste of the big time.

The 8-year-old second grader at Woodland Elementary School, whose real name is Terrence Davison Jr., is a hip-hop performer with big dreams in a small package.

Reno Money recently appeared on two dates of the Recess Is Over Tour, headlined by Nickelodeon star LayLay, who got her start by sharing photos and videos on Instagram in 2017.

The 14-year-old hip-hop artist has her own show on the network. She is also the youngest female rapper to sign a deal with Empire Records.

"I'll probably be like that by the time I'm 9," Reno Money said. His stage name comes from a visit to Reno, Nevada, the "biggest little city in the world."

Performances in Louisville, Dallas and Orlando

He performed on Nickelodeon stops in Louisville and Dallas. He also will appear on an upcoming show in Orlando.

Reno Money got the gigs after he and his father, Terrence Davison Sr., attended a LayLay concert "to check her out."

While at Shawnee State, Davison began promoting and booking events.

That was eight years ago. Davison later got involved with managing artists and started Gentlemen Making Good Financial Choices.

He spoke to LayLay's management and told them about his son. The managers liked what they saw of Reno Money on social media and invited him to join the end of the tour.

There are some remaining dates on the West Coast, but the family turned them down because they would interfere with school and Christmas.

"I like school," the 8-year-old said. "I get excited because I can tell my friends."

Mom got the feeling 'my son is a star'

Paige Glover, Reno Money's mother, said her son showed some nerves during the first tour date.

"The second show, he just mastered it," Glover said. "Everybody thought that he was somebody.

"It was the first time I ever got the feeling that my son is a star."

Reno Money energized the crowds with his signature backflip. He performed sets of 12 and seven minutes.

The 8-year-old said he enjoyed some of the trappings of touring, such as swimming in the hotel pools and flying.

"I like flying, but I don't like when my ears pop," he said.

The only negative of the experience "was we had to practice." Reno Money was not a fan of a cappella.

Well, there was another drawback. Because of the shows, he missed a basketball game at the Mansfield Area Y.

"Sacrifice," his dad said with a smile.

Learning from other performers

Davison has been watching the other performers, looking to incorporate some of what they do into Reno Money's shows. He would like to add dancers.

"I'm learning as I go, which is a good thing," Davison said. "You never want to stop learning, especially in this business."

He added the experience has been invaluable because of the networking opportunities he has gained.

"His dad has done a good job of getting him to where he is now," Glover added. "I think this (tour) was the start of something great."

Reno Money has enough songs for an EP, scheduled for release in the spring of 2022.

His social media handle on Instagram is reno_money1. His music can be downloaded and streamed on such platforms as Apple Music, Spotify, Tidal, Google Music and YouTube.

"When the rookie gets drafted in the NBA, he's with the big dogs," the 8-year-old's father said. "He's just got to be rookie of the year now."

mcaudill@gannett.com

419-521-7219

Twitter: @MNJCaudill

Mansfield News Journal
Published 17 hours ago

Parents in custody after son charged in Oxford school shooting

James and Jennifer Crumbley were captured in a commercial building in Detroit Saturday

Ethan Crumbley's parents during his arraignment Wednesday, Dec. 1, 2021.(WILX)

Published: Dec. 4, 2021 at 6:20 AM EST|Updated: 8 minutes ago

PONTIAC, Mich. (AP) — The parents of a teen accused of killing four students in a shooting at a Michigan high school were caught early Saturday, several hours after a prosecutor filed involuntary manslaughter charges against them, officials said.

James and Jennifer Crumbley were captured in a commercial building in Detroit that housed artwork, Detroit Police Chief James E. White told a news conference. White said the couple “were aided in getting into the building,” and that a person who helped them may also face charges.

A Detroit business owner spotted a car tied to the Crumbleys in his parking lot late Friday, Oakland County Undersheriff Michael McCabe said in a statement. A woman seen near the vehicle ran away when the business owner called 911, McCabe said. The couple was later located and arrested by Detroit police.

A prosecutor filed involuntary manslaughter charges against the Crumbleys on Friday, accusing them of failing to intervene on the day of the tragedy despite being confronted with a drawing and chilling message — “blood everywhere” — that was found at the boy’s desk.

The Crumbleys committed “egregious” acts, from buying a gun on Black Friday and making it available to Ethan Crumbley to resisting his removal from school when they were summoned a few hours before the shooting, Oakland County prosecutor Karen McDonald said.

Authorities had been looking for the couple since Friday afternoon. Late Friday, U.S. Marshals announced a reward of up to $10,000 each for information leading to their arrests.

The Crumbley’s attorney, Shannon Smith, said the pair had left town earlier in the week “for their own safety.” Smith told The Associated Press they would be returning to Oxford to be arraigned.

However, White said the Crumbleys “appeared to be hiding” in the building where they were found. He added that the parents appeared to be “distressed” when they were captured.

The couple was expected to be booked into the Oakland County Jail, McCabe said.

Earlier, the prosecutor offered the most precise account so far of the events that led to the shooting at Oxford High School, roughly 30 miles (50 kilometers) north of Detroit.

Ethan Crumbley, 15, emerged from a bathroom with a gun, shooting students in the hallway, investigators said. He’s charged as an adult with murder, terrorism and other crimes.

Under Michigan law, the involuntary manslaughter charge filed against the parents can be pursued if authorities believe someone contributed to a situation where there was a high chance of harm or death.

Parents in the U.S. are rarely charged in school shootings involving their children, even as most minors get guns from a parent or relative’s house, according to experts.

School officials became concerned about the younger Crumbley on Monday, a day before the shooting, when a teacher saw him searching for ammunition on his phone, McDonald said.

Jennifer Crumbley was contacted and subsequently told her son in a text message: “Lol. I’m not mad at you. You have to learn not to get caught,” according to the prosecutor.

On Tuesday, a teacher found a note on Ethan’s desk and took a photo. It was a drawing of a gun pointing at the words, “The thoughts won’t stop. Help me,” McDonald said.

There also was a drawing of a bullet, she said, with words above it: “Blood everywhere.”

Between the gun and the bullet was a person who appeared to have been shot twice and is bleeding. He also wrote, “My life is useless” and “The world is dead,” according to the prosecutor.

The school quickly had a meeting with Ethan and his parents, who were told to get him into counseling within 48 hours, McDonald said.

The Crumbleys failed to ask their son about the gun or check his backpack and “resisted the idea of their son leaving the school at that time,” McDonald said.

Instead, the teen returned to class and the shooting subsequently occurred.

“The notion that a parent could read those words and also know that their son had access to a deadly weapon that they gave him is unconscionable — it’s criminal,” the prosecutor said.

Jennifer Crumbley texted her son after the shooting, saying, “Ethan, don’t do it,” McDonald said.

James Crumbley called 911 to say that a gun was missing from their home and that Ethan might be the shooter. The gun had been kept in an unlocked drawer in the parents’ bedroom, McDonald said.

Ethan accompanied his father for the gun purchase on Nov. 26 and posted photos of the firearm on social media, saying, “Just got my new beauty today,” McDonald said.

Over the long Thanksgiving weekend, Jennifer Crumbley wrote on social media that it is a “mom and son day testing out his new Christmas present,” the prosecutor said.

Asked at a news conference if the father could be charged for purchasing the gun for the son, McDonald said that would be the decision of federal authorities.

In a video message to the community Thursday, the head of Oxford Community Schools said the high school looks like a “war zone” and won’t be ready for weeks. Superintendent Tim Throne repeatedly complimented students and staff for how they responded to the violence.

He also acknowledged the meeting of Crumbley, the parents and school officials. Throne offered no details but summed it up by saying, “No discipline was warranted.”

McDonald was asked about the decision to keep Crumbley in school.

“Of course, he shouldn’t have gone back to that classroom. ... I believe that is a universal position. I’m not going to chastise or attack, but yeah,” she said.

Asked if school officials may potentially be charged, McDonald said: “The investigation’s ongoing.”

___

White reported from Detroit. Associated Press journalist Mike Householder in Detroit and David Eggert in Lansing, Mich., also contributed to this report.

Copyright 2021 The Associated Press. All rights reserved.

13 abc
Published 17 hours ago

Pupils pitch in to help neighbor with leaves

BELLEFONTAINE SCHOOLS PHOTO

Bellefontaine Middle School students in the BMS+ after school program showcased their giving spirit Tuesday afternoon after noticing leaves in a nearby yard of a neighbor to the school along Ludlow Road. After the students were done with their homework, they raked the neighbor’s leaves. BMS+ runs Monday through Friday morning from 6:45 to 7:35 p.m. for homework help. After school programming is held Monday through Thursday afternoon from 2:35 to 4:35 p.m. The after school portion offers a snack, homework help, enrichment, and specialized assistance in math and reading. (BELLEFONTAINE SCHOOLS PHOTO)

Bellefontaine Examiner
Published 17 hours ago

Project SEARCH opens opportunities for success

NELSONVILLE – Vin Haddox wakes up at 5:48 a.m., eats breakfast and hops on the bus to high school. From there, another bus will take him to Tri-County Career Center and High School in Nelsonville. This is typical of many students at Tri-County but Haddox and his fellow members of Project SEARCH then travel to OhioHealth O’Bleness Hospital each day.

Project SEARCH has been offered nationally and internationally for around 20 years to students with disabilities. This specific branch, instructed by Kelly Smith, is the only one in southeast Ohio and has been in existence for four years. Haddox, his classmates and all of Project SEARCH will be featured during an open house event on Dec. 9 at 9:30 a.m. at Tri-County.

After spending the first hour of the day in class learning social skills, budgeting and finance, self-advocacy, how to balance a checkbook and pay bills, and how to work with colleagues, students in Project SEARCH then move into different sections of the hospital. Students connect with a skills trainer from Capabilities, a disabilities services and support organization in Athens, in order to learn job requirement competencies in the hospital. Through three different internship tenures of 10 weeks each, students work in facilities, radiology, nutrition, volunteer services, environmental services, physical therapy and more.

“We’re extremely proud to host Project SEARCH at O’Bleness,” said LeeAnn Lucas-Helber, President of OhioHealth O’Bleness Hospital. “Inclusion is one of our OhioHealth core values, and Project SEARCH gives us a chance to practice that value every day. As much as the program supports the development of the students, we’ve also found that our associates benefit from the opportunity to get to know the students and recognize and value the unique contributions they make to our organization.”

Haddox is currently working in the nutrition department and the kitchen areas. He also works in environmental services a couple days each week. He said he was nervous when he first joined the program, but after a week or so he became more sociable and, while it took a minute to get used to where to go, he now feels like an expert.

“I feel like I’m important,” Haddox said. “I feel like I’m on top of the world.”

Project SEARCH is a one-year transition program from high school to employment. Students from the eight schools in Athens, Hocking and Perry counties with enough credits to graduate defer completion to work an extra year in the program. Once finished, students are equipped with tools for success.

“It’s very rewarding,” Smith said. “Seeing these students grow in just a few short months is great. They come in and leave with the skills to work with people and earn a job.”

Success can take many different forms. For some, it’s opening up and having the confidence to speak to others. Some find success in finding gainful employment and some define success by being able to live and work independently.

Haddox feels like his time with Project SEARCH has made him a better person, more talkative, a better listener, more independent, a better worker, and more appreciative. When he completes the program, he has aspirations of working for a company such as FedEx or UPS.

During the Dec. 9 Open House, prospective students will be able to speak to current members of the program and learn more about Project SEARCH. Members of the Athens, Hocking and Perry county boards of developmental disabilities are invited as well. Email kellysmith@tricoujntyhightech.com for more information.

Logan Daily News
Published 17 hours ago