December 20, 2012 |
NEWTOWN, Conn. - The family of Noah Pozner was mourning the 6-year-old, killed in the Newtown school massacre, when outrage compounded their sorrow. Someone they didn't know was soliciting donations in Noah's memory, claiming that they'd send any cards, packages and money collected to his parents and siblings. An official-looking website had been set up, with Noah's name as the address, even including petitions on gun control. Noah's uncle, Alexis Haller, called on law-enforcement authorities to seek out "these despicable people.
December 19, 2012 |
HARRISBURG - For the last two years, the words gun control vanished from the political debate in the state Capitol. With Republicans controlling the legislature and the Governor's Office in a state that issued thousands of hunting licenses in 2012, the only controversial gun-related legislation under consideration was a bill to expand gun rights under the so-called castle doctrine. That bill, allowing individuals to use deadly force when threatened anywhere outside their homes as well as inside, passed easily.
December 19, 2012 |
Privately, Ramona DiGiacomo Johnstone of Woodbury struggled to cope with her only son's murder, speaking about him sometimes in the present tense. But publicly, the gregarious, 4-foot-11 woman would chat up strangers and get to know them quickly. "She could empathize with people," said her brother-in-law Charles DePaulis. "She knew your life story in 10 minutes. " Five years after her 27-year-old son, Thomas Lennox III, a Delaware County businessman, was fatally beaten in Pennsylvania, Johnstone, 54, was fatally stabbed Monday in her apartment.
December 18, 2012
That it takes a special person to be a teacher was never more evident than during the massacre at Sandy Hook Elementary School, whose brave staff sacrificed their lives for the children who looked to them for protection. Every day, in less horrific situations, teachers in systems such as Philadelphia's also learn what it means to be confronted by senseless violence. Often it makes them question their choice of profession. Good teachers, though, stay committed. They keep coming back to the classroom.
December 17, 2012
By Petula Dvorak We live in a society that makes it easy to kill kids. Though we want to pretend that isn't true. Because the kids gunned down at Sandy Hook Elementary School in Connecticut on Friday were swaddled in federally regulated fire-retardant blankets, rode in elaborate car seats plastered with safety stickers, learned to ride bikes with safety helmets, and were never left alone with a plastic bag. Some may never have had a Twinkie....
December 16, 2012 |
NEWTOWN, Conn. - This, residents say, is a special town. Why, exactly? They'll point you to the town's prized flagpole, which stands in the middle of an intersection on Main Street. They'll mention the Newtown General Store, purveyor of locally grown delicacies and piping-hot coffee. They speak fondly of $2 movie nights at the town hall, tree lightings at Christmas and parades on Labor Day. Then there's tiny Sandy Hook, a bit of small-town Americana that could have sprung, fully formed, from a Norman Rockwell painting.
December 12, 2012 |
FOR MUMMERS, "Two Street" is a place to drink, dance and celebrate. On Monday, 2nd Street became a place where members of the city's decorated Fralinger String Band faced premature defeat, as they watched months of preparation for the 2013 New Year's Day parade literally go up in flames. A four-alarm fire erupted inside a warehouse at 2nd and Wharton streets where Fralinger rented space for its workshop and stored "dozens and dozens" of floats and props, according to chairman Steve Coper.
December 10, 2012 |
CINCINNATI - During a moment of silence before the game, the Cowboys bowed their heads, put their hands over their hearts, and honored a teammate killed in a car crash early Saturday. Then they staged their latest comeback: Dan Bailey's 40-yard field goal as time ran out gave Dallas a 20-19 win over the Cincinnati Bengals, a victory that provided a few seconds of relief from two days of grief. "There was a feeling of numbness on the field, but they focused and found a way to win today," coach Jason Garrett said.
November 17, 2012 |
MIDLAND, Texas - Cheered on by a flag-waving crowd, a parade float filled with wounded veterans and their spouses was inching across a railroad track when the crossing gates began to lower and a freight train that seemed to come out of nowhere was suddenly bearing down on them, its horn blaring. Some of those seated on the float jumped off in wide-eyed terror just moments before the train crashed into the flatbed truck with a low whoosh and a thunderous crack. Four veterans - including an Army sergeant who apparently sacrificed his life to save his wife's - were killed Thursday afternoon and 16 people were injured in a scene of tragedy and heroism.
October 22, 2012 |
On Belmont Plateau, Neumann University's Dan Rowe had just passed a runner going in the opposite direction. The other runner shouted to Rowe that one of their fellow competitors was passed out in the woods. A lifeguard this past summer for the North Wildwood Beach Patrol, Rowe ran another 50 yards or so and turned a corner, seeing two trail walkers with the fallen runner near the back of the pack. This was Sept. 22, in the 33d annual Philadelphia Metropolitan Cross Country Championships.