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Tragedy

NEWS
March 11, 2014 | By Michaelle Bond, Inquirer Staff Writer
Scott Rucci was at the movies when he got word that his friend Dante DeSimone had been killed in an accident. When, the next morning, Rucci and many of his fellow Upper Darby High School classmates were summoned one by one to counselors' offices, he dreaded having to talk about the accident. But the counselor didn't push Rucci to talk about his feelings of loss and fear. She simply said, "If you want to talk, I'm here. " "It wasn't what I expected," Rucci, 17, said. "But it really helped.
NEWS
February 16, 2014 | By Chris Palmer, Inquirer Staff Writer
In the middle of Friday's horrific crash on the Pennsylvania Turnpike between Bensalem and Willow Grove, scenes of concern and compassion were everywhere. Friends and strangers alike came together to take care of one another, both at the site of the accidents and in the miles-long backup that resulted. An 11-month-old girl was delivered from her mother's cold car to her warm day-care center by a group of friends. Strangers shared food and drink. A few men helped a woman recharge her car's battery after another woman provided jumper cables.
NEWS
February 16, 2014 | By Kristin E. Holmes, Inquirer Staff Writer
WAYNE In a civil rights anthology of heroes and defining moments, the story of Ossian Sweet is a tragedy. The Detroit physician just wanted a nice house for his family. But the neighborhood didn't want him. So, as in urban centers across the United States, including Philadelphia, an unruly mob surrounded a home. But in the Sweet incident, there were shootings, a legendary lawyer, a future Supreme Court justice, and, eventually, a suicide. Gordon Bennett, a playwright and emeritus professor at Eastern University in St. Davids, has taken the relatively unknown story and transformed it into a play that will make its Philadelphia area debut next Saturday and Feb. 23. My Name Is Ossian Sweet is a portrayal of an unassuming doctor who had no intention of becoming an activist or symbol.
NEWS
February 12, 2014
MOMENTS AFTER I walked up to Saturday morning's Handbags 4 Peace rally at 53rd and Market streets, a male onlooker turned in my direction to point out all the other men in the crowd of about 100. Looking around, I could see that about as many men as women were standing around, huddled inside heavy coats and listening to speakers outside the Tropical Heat nightclub, where Melissa Thomas was senselessly gunned down after a night of karaoke with friends....
NEWS
February 5, 2014 | BY DAVID GAMBACORTA, Daily News Staff Writer gambacd@phillynews.com, 215-854-5994
THERE ISN'T a hint of a silver lining to the April 2012 Kensington factory fire that claimed the lives of two Philadelphia firefighters. A grand-jury report released yesterday by the District Attorney's Office laid the blame for the deaths of Lt. Robert Neary and firefighter Daniel Sweeney at the feet of Michael and Nahman Lichtenstein, the arrogantly reckless owners of the former Thomas Buck Hosiery factory, and the gang that couldn't shoot straight...
NEWS
January 9, 2014 | By Joseph A. Slobodzian, Inquirer Staff Writer
PHILADELPHIA A ward of the state since birth, Jhontue Ryals surely would have died in prison had her health not been so bad. On dialysis since she was 8, with two failed kidney transplants, legally blind, and diabetic from all the drugs that kept her alive, Ryals, 27, was given four months to live in 2010 when a Philadelphia judge agreed to a mercy sentence of five years' probation for her setting of a boardinghouse fire that killed a 77-year-old man....
NEWS
December 26, 2013 | By Michael Vitez, Inquirer Staff Writer
When Theresa Welsh, a Haddonfield pediatrician, agreed to donate her kidney to a stranger, to start a chain of kidney donations, she had one requirement: get the operation done with before her first grandchild arrived. The surgery was Oct. 22. She was back to work part time in two weeks, seeing her own patients. And she will spend Christmas Day with her new grandson, Evan, born Dec. 5. "I do feel perfectly fine," she said. Her right kidney has stepped up its performance beautifully, making up for the loss of her left.
NEWS
November 23, 2013 | By Michaelle Bond, Inquirer Staff Writer
MALVERN Patricia Dudas wants so much to go next door and apologize to the family of Drew Alan Ferguson. But the time is not yet right, she said. "We just haven't been comfortable enough," Dudas said Thursday afternoon. Later, she added, "They may not want to see our face, but that's the right thing to do. " Dudas is the mother of a Collegeville man arrested in the shooting of a friend last Friday. Merritt Neil Dudas, 24, was arrested Tuesday and charged with shooting Ferguson, 21, in the head at the Miner Street home that Ferguson shared with his grandmother.
NEWS
October 29, 2013 | By Sulaiman Abdur-Rahman, Inquirer Staff Writer
PHILADELPHIA By cleaning up the grounds and creek at Pennypack Park on Saturday, Christopher Alvelo had completed the final project needed in his pursuit of the prestigious Eagle Scout rank, his family said. The 17-year-old senior at New Foundations Charter School and three friends were looking forward to a future banquet celebrating their scouting accomplishment as they left the park Saturday afternoon. They were on their way home to Northeast Philadelphia in a 2007 Ford Explorer driven by Alvelo's stepfather, Joseph Snyder, when the 51-year-old fell unconscious.
NEWS
October 15, 2013
Hundreds of children have been killed by vehicles being backed up while federal officials delayed ordering automakers to equip vehicles with improved rear-visibility technology. The statistic is a grim reminder of the life-and-death stakes of safety advocates' renewed push to mandate backup cameras or other steps to prevent such deaths. Legislation approved by Congress and signed by President George W. Bush in 2008 included a clear directive: Federal transportation officials had three years to draft a rule requiring vehicles to afford drivers better rear visibility or take other steps to reduce the risks of backing up, such as adding sensors.
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