November 19, 1992 |
By day, Bruce Riffel was a respectable plumber. But by night, he prowled the Northeast as the notorious "convenience store bandit," using Molotov-cocktails and knives to terrorize and rob store clerks. Now, Bruce Riffel will have a new persona: prisoner. Common Pleas Judge Pamela Pryor Cohen sentenced Riffel, 35, to nine to 20 years in prison on Tuesday for six holdups between June and October 1989. "He was a predator," Assistant District Attorney Edward McCann told the judge.
September 21, 1988 |
James E. "Jimmy the Plumber" Armstrong, a retired city sanitation worker who knew he couldn't change the world but could clean up his small part of it, died Saturday. He was 68 and lived in Southwest Philadelphia. Armstrong worked for the sanitation division of the city's Streets Department for 20 years, most of that time pushing a cart and broom in Center City. He got to know every merchant and vendor by name. He was a supervisor when he retired in 1981. There was no hiding place for so much as a gum wrapper on Market Street between 11th and 12th when Armstrong was on the job. A few years later he was back in Center City with his daughter, Gloria Becerril.
August 16, 2011
Thomas J. Scanlan, 84, of Southampton, a retired plumber and volunteer, died of kidney failure Friday, Aug. 12, at home. As a master plumber, Mr. Scanlan worked at Nazareth Hospital and then at Liberty Bell Park in Philadelphia from its opening in 1963 until it closed in 1986. Mr. Scanlan was a member and past president of the plumbers union Local 690. At 17, he dropped out of Northeast Catholic High School to join the Navy and, during World War II, served in the Pacific aboard the destroyer Keys.
January 28, 1991 |
Edward Pickens, 38, of Lansdale, a member of the North Penn school board, died Friday of a heart attack. Mr. Pickens was stricken at Webraft Mailing Systems in Chalfont, Bucks County, where he had worked as a master plumber for the last year. He was taken to Doylestown Hospital. Born in Brooklyn, N.Y., Mr. Pickens graduated from Oceanside High School on Long Island in 1970. He attended St. John's University in Queens, N.Y., and graduated from Suburban Technical School in Long Island with an associate's degree in electronics.
September 30, 1994 |
James George Douris' billing practices were called outrageous, even for a plumber. Douris found a way to turn $75 service calls into bills for more than $300 to $1,200 - often without so much as lifting a wrench, state and Bucks County officials charged yesterday in a lawsuit. When consumers filed complaints, Douris, owner of George Plumbing Inc. in Newtown, billed them an extra $200 for "office fees," the lawsuit said. "This is the most outrageous billing case I've ever seen," said Courtney Yelle, director of Bucks County Department of Consumer Protection.
August 6, 2007 |
Adam Hughes set his prized possession on the table for everyone to see - Barry Bonds' record-tying home run ball, already safely encased in an acrylic box. "It was pretty neat to be part of history," said Hughes, a 33-year-old plumber from San Diego's La Jolla section. "I'll have something to tell my kids. " Hughes became an instant celebrity Saturday night when he scooped up Bonds' No. 755, which tied the San Francisco Giants' slugger with Hank Aaron as baseball's most prolific home-run hitter.
January 3, 2004 |
In an upset to prognosticators who said Kelly Clarkson was a shoo-in for the World Idol crown, Norwegian plumber Kurt Nilsen won the title. The gap-toothed, cherubic 25-year-old, who looks like a cross between a hobbit and Clay Aiken, won Thursday night in London with his rendition of U2's "Beautiful Day. " "This is totally amazing," a thrilled and tearful Nilsen said. "I love you guys," he told the 10 other competitors. And American sweetheart Clarkson? She came in second, while Belgium's Peter Everard was third.
June 24, 2001 |
Victor Marcus Snyder, 60, of Lansdale, a former Philadelphia plumber-turned-criminal defense lawyer, died suddenly Friday at home. Relatives said Mr. Snyder may have suffered a heart ailment. Mr. Snyder became a household name in the region when he appeared in TV commercials in the 1970s promoting himself as "Philadelphia's plumber. " He later went to law school, passed the bar and became a lawyer. He maintained law offices at 2 Penn Center in Center City until his death. Born in Philadelphia, Mr. Snyder graduated in 1958 from Girard College.
May 11, 1997 |
Arthur J. Kehoe Sr., 66, a retired master plumber who received a heart transplant 11 years ago, died of heart failure Friday at Allegheny University Hospitals/Hahnemann. He lived in Conshohocken. Heart problems had dogged Mr. Kehoe early on. He had suffered heart attacks at age 42 and at 44, his family said, and a third, massive attack that required quadruple bypass surgery on Nov. 8, 1985. Mr. Kehoe received his heart transplant at Temple University Hospital April 7, 1986 - on the seventh birthday of his grandson Paul Taboga.
March 16, 1998 |
Fred Ward Moore, 88, a retired plumber, died of complications of multiple strokes on Saturday at the Glen Mills home of his daughter. Before moving in with his daughter, Mr. Moore had been a resident of Havertown for many years. Mr. Moore had worked for 10 years as a plumber for a subcontractor at Peco substations. Before that, he had been self-employed as a plumbing and heating contractor in Haverford Township. Mr. Moore was raised in Haverford Township on the H.G. Lloyd Estate where his father was superintendent for 70 years.