Altoona Mirror, March 20, 2001

Altoona Mirror

March 20, 2001

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Issue date: Tuesday, March 20, 2001

Pages available: 72

Previous edition: Monday, March 19, 2001

Next edition: Wednesday, March 21, 2001 - Used by the World's Finest Libraries and Institutions
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Publication name: Altoona Mirror

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Altoona Mirror (Newspaper) - March 20, 2001, Altoona, Pennsylvania Nation: Sub crewman admits to violating orders Cl life: Big band musicians performing at Cove school Copyright 2001 TUESDAY, MARCH 20, 2001 500 newsstand Pa. teams to meet in basketball's Sweet 16 BY MICHAEL RUBINKAM The Associated Press Penn State and Temple in the Sweet 16. Playing each other, no less. Who woulda thunk it? March Madness has gripped State College, Philadelphia and points in between as the Nittany Lions and Owls prepare to face off in the NCAA basketball tourna- ment for the first time. While the game is a bracket- buster for many office poolers, stu- dents on both campuses hardly can wait for Friday's matchup in Atlanta. Penn State even offered free bus transportation to -the Georgia Dome. "I think this is the team that takes them to the Final Temple senior Bill Moore, 23, said Monday. Neither squad was expected to make it this far. Eleventh-seeded Temple scored an upset victory over No. 3 seed Florida, which made it to last season's champi- onship game. Seventh-seeded Penn State then ran roughshod over No. 2 seed North Carolina. "I think [the victory has] raised expectations. Nobody really expects the basketball team to win, but maybe now they Penn State senior Jeremy Bennett said. The cross-state rivalry prompt- ed a friendly wager between the two schools. Temple said it would be willing to ship a few cheesesteaks and soft pretzels to State College if Penn State wins. In turn, Penn State promised Temple some ice cream from its dairy "in the very unlikely event that Temple should pull out a Penn State spokesman Tysen Kendig said. Although most hoops fans had no problem choosing sides, Dan Lefton was left a bit conflicted. He graduated from Penn State in 1998 but is now the ticket manager for Temple University athletics. "It's he said. "It's like 1 have two kids. My oldest son is Penn State and my young'est one is Temple." Lefton said his cell phone rang off the hook after Penn State's upset victory over second-seeded North Carolina Sunday night. Family and friends wanted to know: Who would he support? he replied. "One of my friends didn't believe me.... At least there's a silver lining if Temple loses." Please see A4 THE GAME Penn Stale (21-11) vs. Temple (23-12) When: 10 p.m. Friday Where: Georgia Dome, Atlanta Why: NCM South Regional TV: CBS Previous meeting: PSU defeated Temple 66-60 Dec. 9 at the Bryce Jordan Center. Tickets: and available by calling Penn State Athletic Ticket Office at 865-5555 or (BOO) 863-3336. INSIDE Neil Rudel looks back on Penn State's NCAA ride; Jim Lane's NCAA notes; Penn State women wrap up the season. PAGE B1 Scare sets stage for security Call about bomb threat to Blair Courthouse prompts debate for tougher system. BY PHIL RAY Staff Writer HOLLIDAYSBURG- Security at the Blair County Courthouse will be increased in the wake of a bomb threat Monday that followed a firebombing incident last week at the Hollidaysburg office of District Justice Elizabeth Doyle. Fire alarms began to blare incessantly at a.m. Monday, within minutes after a call was received at the courthouse switch- board contending that the man who fire- bombed Doyle's office during the weekend of March 10 was on his way to the court- house with a bomb. The call sounded very real to the court- house employee who received it. She noti- fied the commissioners' office and Commissioner John H. Eichelberger Jr. at his insurance office across Allegheny Street from the courthouse. Eichelberger immediately came to the county building. Eichelberger said he pulled the alarm, which resulted in the evacuation of hun- dreds of courthouse workers and members of the public. After an initial search of the building by representatives of the Hollidaysburg Police Department, the county sheriffs depart- ment and county maintenance personnel, department heads were called backed into the courthouse and instructed by Eichelberger to have their employees examine their work stations to see if there were any problems. "If anything looks out of the ordinary, a briefcase, a bag, do not touch it. Notify Eichelberger told the depart- ment heads. The employees, minus the public, were allowed back into the courthouse. As noon came and went, the commission- ers finally decided to close the courthouse for the rest of the day so state police could take a bomb-sniffing dog named Sharked through the building to be sure no one had planted an explosive. As plans were being 'drawn up for the search of the building, Commissioner John J. Ebersqle, who last week adamantly opposed increased security in the court- house despite the Doyle firebombing, said measures now will be taken to bolster safety. A security person will travel the hall- ways carrying a handheld metal detector and communications equipment, he said. Also, at least one new security camera Mirror photo by J.D. Cavrich Sheriffs Deputy David Summers checks visitors' items entering the 'new entrance at the Blair County Courthouse Monday. will be added to the array of other security equipment that now allows a county work- er to scan the expansive courthouse hall- ways for possible trouble. These new measures, Ebersole said, still would not have stopped the Monday morn- ing bomb threat or the firebombing at Doyle's office. The incidents during the past week have courthouse employees on edge. "My people don't want to be said Shirley Burket, Blair County register of wills and records of deeds, as county employ- ees were filing back into the building. Burket said she was in favor of limiting the number of entrances where the public and courthouse workers could enter the courthouse. She said having one entrance into the courthouse would enable security to catch someone carrying a gun or bomb. Prothonotary Carol Newman said, "I agree with the single point of entry." She said that step would enable security to have better control of what can be brought into the courthouse. Newman said at times people come into her office with bags and cases. Many of them are angry at the court system, she said. Newman said there are occasions when someone reaches in a bag or a case to pull something out. "You hold your breath. You don't know what's going to she said. One visitor to her office was so angry he said he knew how to kill her using only one finger. He pointed the finger at her across the counter. Another woman talked about pulling a knife from the bag she was carrying. Heightened security would at least "make you feel Newman said. Paula Riley, the courthouse worker who received the telephone call Monday, said a woman stated her son was responsible for "the bombing over the weekend." Riley took this to mean the incident March 10 or 11 in which someone tossed several Molotov cocktails onto the roof of Doyle's Hollidaysburg office. A portion of the roof was destroyed, but the bulk of the gasoline contained in the plastic bottles did not ignite. Please see A4 Huck Jacobson may close BY CRAIG WILLIAMS Staff Writer Workers at Huck Jacobson were told Monday afternoon that because of a slowdown in the auto- motive industry, there is a "high probability" that work at the Altoona production lines will be transferred elsewhere, and the doors on the former Penn Jacobson building will be closed. Plant workers are expected to return to work today after the com- pany temporarily closed its doors Monday afternoon after an announcement that production is expected to be moved elsewhere by the end of the year. A note on the factory main door Monday night told truckers the plant is closed, unusual for a facili- ty that typically operates three shifts. The parking lot was con- spicuously empty. Only the smell of wet pine from the stacked pallets outside the loading docks testified to recent activity. Officials from parent company Huck Fasteners, a division of Alcoa, 'said in a written statement it is "too early to tell the effect of the consoli- dation on individual positions." Alcoa spokeswoman Lauren Side said the manufacturing of high-stress nuts and bolts, which are used in cars and trucks in jobs such as attaching the sheet metal to the frame, will like- ly be moved by 2002 to other factories within Huck International. "There are more than a couple of companies in Huck Fasteners that make she said. HISTORY IN BRIEF Before landing in Pittsburgh- based Alcoa's Inc.'s portfolio, Huck former Penn Jacobson, was bought and resold several times. Huck Jacobson's parent company now is Huck Fasteners, a division of Alcoa. In early February, it was con- firmed that layoffs were being con- sidered for the plant at 4601 Portland Ave. Monday, workers were told that work at the Altoona production lines would be transferred, and the build- ing possibly would be closed. Other divisions also manufac- ture aviation grade nuts and bolts in addition to automobile products. The company stopped short of announcing a full closing Monday. "The possible consolidation of manufacturing is a result of a slow- down in business read a handout provided to the media. However, a worker who asked not to be named said the company is profitable and that workers were told all the machines will be moved one at a time to a facility in Medina, Ohio, and 115 job offers will be made to the current 160 workers. "They like to move the workers who operate the machines with the he said. "They are just consolidating." Please see A8 Film, Richard Gere turn Kittanning upside down BY CHAUNCEY Ross The Indiana Gazette KITTANNING People take off work or skip classes and drive 20-plus miles to stand outdoors in the freezing cold. Downtown Kittanning merchants allow the names of their businesses to be stripped from their storefronts. Residents check into motels while all their belongings and household furnishings are put into storage. These are the symptoms of a phe- nomenon. It's one that has gripped Kittanning in recent weeks and promises to keep the town turned upside down for the Please see A4 Star power Richard Gere's "The Mothman Prophecies" is putting Kittanning on the big-screen map. Kittanning Altoona Subscription or home delivery questions: 946-7480 or (800) 287-4480 7496 I Lottery numbers, A2 Partly cloudy, Forecast, A2 TOMORROW the Mirror's new quarterly magazine, makes its first appearance tomorrow. In the debut edition: Everything you ever wanted to know about Homer Simpson's favorite drink: Beer. We'll show you area folks who take their hops, barley and malt very seriously. They say everyone is Irish on St. Patrick's Day, but we'll talk to some area folks who make pride in their Irish roots an everyday occurrence. Local columns on health, nutrition, stress and relationships. Advice on dating, mating, work, play and lots more. All in the debut edition of Bravo! Included FREE in your Mirror tomorrow. War stories told to students BY KEVIN OTT StaffWriter When many of Altoona High School's sophomores are 18 years old, they'll likely be look- ing forward to a new job or a trip to college after they graduate. When Tom Price was 18, he was shivering in a foxhole in South Korea. In 1952, Price was a Marine fighting in the Korean War. As soon as he was old enough, he joined up and took the trip to South Korea. Monday morning, he spoke to a class of Altoona Area High School students. It was part of an effort to bring textbook learning together with the real thing. This week, 14 locals who served in the Korean War will bring their stories, mem- ories and impressions to the halls of Altoona Area High School. On Monday, the students ques- tioned Price. And questioned him. "What asked Todd Monahan, starting off the talks. What happened: The United Altonna UJtmir PTHE GREAT COMBINATION Call money today. Ask for THE GREAT COMBINATION of MIRROR CLASSIFIEDS and HOT-ADS Phone (814) 946-7422 or fax us at (814) 946-7547 Q Hospitals Pirates notebook Abby Puzzles Television Nations and the United States'sent troops to South Korea to halt the invasion force of North Korean sol- diers and, later, Chinese Comm- unist forces. For Price, that meant working with the big guns. His job was to locate enemy artillery and mark it. U.S. forces then opened fire, hope- fully taking one more enemy how- itzer off the map. But Korean forces were just as cagey as U.S. forces. "They could pick you out of a fox- hole if they wanted he said. Students mostly asked questions about everyday life in the battle zone. What did you eat? (Leftover rations from World War II.) Please see A4 C3-8 D3 D2 D2 02 ;