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Emu escape ends bittersweetly

PUBLISHED IN THE CENTRE DAILY TIMES

SATURDAY, MARCH 26, 2011

BY ANNE DANAHY AND ED MAHOn

COLLEGE TOWNSHIP — Eddie Agostinelli spent most of this week chasing down emus — long-legged birds that resemble ostriches and are native to Australia. He bought them, hoping to turn a farming hobby into a profession.

But early Sunday morning, shortly after they’d arrived at his Shingletown farm, the two female emus and one male emu escaped.

The search ended somewhat sadly Friday afternoon, when the last nomadic emu was captured — but died shortly after, apparently from the stress and physical exertion of the chase.

Read more: Emu escape ends bittersweetly.

Watch a video: Emu owner explains escape.

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Mextorf on leave after DUI charge

PUBLISHED IN THE CENTRE DAILY TIMES

THURSDAY, DEC. 3, 2010

BY ED MAHON

State College Area School District Superintendent Richard Mextorf has been charged with DUI as a result of a traffic stop in Clinton County on Thursday, Nov. 18.

“I am embarrassed and ashamed, but I intend to be accountable for my actions,” Mextorf wrote in an e-mail Wednesday afternoon, after state police at Lamar made the information public.

According to the report issued by state police, Mextorf, 48, of Patton Township, was driving a 2008 Jeep Grand Cherokee at about 7:58 a.m. on state Route 64 near Stover’s Sub Shop in Porter Township when a trooper pulled him over for a traffic violation.

Read more: Mextorf on leave after DUI charge.

Read all articles on this issue: State College superintendent arrested for DUI, resigns.

Mextorf

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State College Area School District: Mextorf resigns after DUI charge.

PUBLISHED IN THE CENTRE DAILY TIMES

SUNDAY, DEC. 5, 2010

BY ED MAHON

State College Area School District Superintendent Richard Mextorf resigned Saturday morning, following a DUI arrest that became public last week.

“I am so sorry to have fallen short, and for letting everyone down in such dramatic fashion,” Mextorf wrote in a statement, in which he also thanked school board and community members for giving him the chance to work in the district. “I am unsure what the future will hold. At the present time, I am working with my support systems and focusing on getting better.”

Mextorf’s resignation came more than two weeks after his arrest in Clinton County, and after some community members had called for his resignation. He said the decision was a mutual one agreed to by all parties.

Read more: State College Area School District: Mextorf resigns after DUI charge.

Read all articles on this issue: State College superintendent arrested for DUI, resigns.

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Fire razes historic store

Owners unsure of what will become of business

PUBLISHED IN THE CENTRE DAILY TIMES

FRIDAY, APRIL 16, 2010

BELLEVILLE, Mifflin County — Lewis Peachey was 13 when he started working in his father’s butcher shop.

Over the next 55 years, A.J. Peachey & Sons grew from a 30-by-60-foot store into a Mifflin County landmark and tourist attraction, known for its pies, homemade hot sausages and Dutch-style cooking.

The building burned to the ground in a fire that began shortly before 12:30 a.m. Thursday.

“It’s been our life,” said Lewis Peachey, 68, as he stood outside the rubble Thursday afternoon. “The debate is, ‘What do we do in the future?’ That’s the debate, and we haven’t decided yet. We need to think that through.”

CDT photo/Ed Mahon

Charred rubble is all that remains of the A.J. Peachey & Sons market after an overnight fire destroyed the tourist attraction in Belleville on Thursday. Lewis Peachey, who’s worked at the store for 55 years, says he’s not sure if they will rebuild the business.

Read more: Fire razes historic store.

(This story also ran in the Harrisburg Patriot-News.)

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State High grad dies in helicopter crash

PUBLISHED IN THE CENTRE DAILY TIMES

FRIDAY, OCT. 30, 2009

BY ED MAHON

After his third tour of duty in Iraq, Michael Edward Weston wanted to decompress. So in the summer of 2007, he decided to kayak about 2,300 miles down the Mississippi River, from Minnesota to New Orleans.

“He had planned it to take two months, which was sort of reasonable,” said his mother, Judy Zarit, of State College. “He did it in one month.”

Friends and family members say Weston, 37, of Washington, D.C., brought that same devotion, dedication and passion to every aspect of his life: as a student at Harvard Law School; as the writer of the family’s humorous Christmas letters; as the minister at his brothers’ weddings; as a Marine major leading troops in Iraq; and as a Drug Enforcement Administration agent fighting the opium trade in Afghanistan.

“He cared about love of country, and ultimately, living life to the fullest,” said Damon Stevens, 36, who served with Weston in southern Iraq in 2003, during the beginning of that war.

“He always had to complete what he started,” Weston’s mother said in a telephone call from Washington, D.C.
Weston, a 1990 graduate of State College Area High School, was killed Monday, along with nine other Americans in a military helicopter crash in Afghanistan. He was among three DEA special agents deployed with troops returning from a drug raid in the western part of the country.

The cause of the crash is still under investigation.

Read more: State High grad dies in crash.

Friends and family said Mike Weston was always in motion and left a law career for Marines. Photo provided.

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