August 13, 2014 |
Two months into the life of Zahav, with major reviews still pending for the groundbreaking Israeli restaurant, its star chef suddenly disappeared. Chef Michael Solomonov's culinary star had been rising and nearly $1 million had been invested in this 2008 passion project in Society Hill with partner Steven Cook. "There was no way forward that included failure for Zahav," said Cook. But then Solomonov was nowhere to be found for 10 days. Six years later, the now nationally celebrated chef is finally well enough to reveal where he went: to rehab to deal with his longtime addiction to heroin and crack cocaine.
August 8, 2014 |
Tears dripped from Sona Turner's face as she drove, but her lips stayed silent. It had been more than five months since an unknown killer had stuffed her 30-year-old daughter, Tara Alicea, into a suitcase and left it in the woods behind Egg Harbor Township's Harbor Square mall. Now, as Turner drove past the mall to drop off her boyfriend at a bus station, she felt like vomiting. On the way home to Clayton, Turner's granddaughter - Alicea's 8-year-old daughter, Nilza - moved to the front seat and asked to wear her grandmother's glasses.
July 25, 2014 |
A SOUTH PHILLY drug addict who conspired with a Philly police officer to steal drugs from dealers was sentenced yesterday in federal court to 10 months behind bars. Robert Nagy, 26, was awarded for cooperating with the government, and as part of his sentence was ordered to continue cooperating with the feds. The identity of the cop with whom he conspired was not revealed in court and has not been revealed in public court documents. He has been identified only by the initials C.S. Nagy pleaded guilty in April to conspiracy to commit extortion.
July 16, 2014 |
The day Seabrook House opened in 1974, a young woman walked through the door with two little boys. She wanted to know whether the brand-new alcoholism and addiction treatment center in rural Cumberland County, N.J., could help her husband. Seabrook cofounder Margaret "Peg" Diehl gave the visitor the answer she'd learned by heart in the 1960s, when she was struggling to raise her sons while her husband's drinking threatened to destroy their lives - and his. The woman's husband could be offered treatment, "but her family needed help, too," Peg recalls.
June 4, 2014 |
CARMEN LOPEZ lives half a block down Frankford Avenue from Healing Way methadone clinic, but she wasn't invited to its invitation-only open house yesterday. So she stood outside and graphically described her fear of the addicts who will soon be coming to her Holmesburg neighborhood for treatment. A big square bandage covered the knife wound in the petite woman's chest. "I couldn't sleep early Saturday morning," Lopez said, "so I walked out on my back porch, and a man who was obviously high on drugs came at me with a knife and stabbed me in the chest.
May 30, 2014 |
DON TOLLEFSON'S tab has more than doubled, according to Bucks County prosecutors, who now put the total loss from his alleged sports-ticket scheme at about $250,000. Tollefson, charged in February for allegedly ripping off 100 people for about $100,000, was held for trial yesterday after waiving his preliminary hearing in a Bucks County district court. The ex-sports anchor arrived wearing a beige three-piece suit and said he was "feeling strong. " But apparently not contrite.
April 21, 2014 |
WASHINGTON TWP. The Rev. John Stabeno calls his Monday-night meetings a sobering dose of "reality. " In the basement of St. Charles Borromeo, dozens of drug addicts and alcoholics and their family members meet weekly to vent, cry, laugh, and smile. Stabeno, a 14-year priest in the Diocese of Camden, says he tries to keep it real himself - right down to his attire. At a recent meeting, he wore loose jeans and a T-shirt as about 60 people gathered in a circle. "He's not just a priest," said Rich Bilo, 26, of Deptford, who on this warm spring night had reached 38 days without alcohol with Stabeno's assistance.
April 14, 2014 |
The first time Pearson Crosby went to the methadone clinic at the Philadelphia VA Medical Center in early 2013, he asked his father to go with him. But couldn't tell him why. Crosby, who played varsity basketball at Council Rock High School South, had served four years in the United States Marine Corps, with two tours in Iraq. When he came home from war in late 2008, he soon faced another scourge - addiction to prescription pain medications. His life descended into another hell, one maybe worse than war. He couldn't admit to himself, much less to his family, what he'd become.
March 28, 2014 |
MOMENTS before she grabbed the Clef Club mic and sang Michael Jackson's "You Are Not Alone" as if she were pleading for her life, Gina Albater said, "I always wanted to be a singer, but I started using drugs when I was 13, so all my dreams went down the drain. " She's 36 now, lucky to be alive, lucky to be dreaming again - and she knows it. Like her fellow competitors in the first round of Recovery Idol 2014 - which ends in September when two finalists will battle at Penn's Landing in front of 20,000 people in recovery - the South Philly singer is now clean and sober, and fighting to stay that way. "I was raised around a bunch of addicts, so I thought that was normal," Albater said.
March 24, 2014 |
EVER HAVE A CHAT with an impressively mature kid and wistfully think, "If only I'd known at her age what she knows"? I get that way every time a child shares a sage insight that took me years to learn the hard way. Like last week, when I chilled with teacher Joanna Bottaro's fifth-graders at the Gen. George A. McCall School, on 7th Street near Spruce. The students are researching the phenomena of emotional neglect (which they endearingly refer to as "neglection"). They've managed to boil down the topic to an essential truth that I wish I'd learned decades sooner: We'd all be better off if we listened more closely and more often to each other, with more empathy and less judgment.