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Altoona Mirror: Tuesday, December 18, 2001 - Page 1

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   Altoona Mirror (Newspaper) - December 18, 2001, Altoona, Pennsylvania                                FREE inside today's Minor: Yule always remember Those memories of Christmas mishaps past don't look so bad In fact, they're often included we list our favorite holiday moments. Crape expectations Don't tell Frflsier mid iN'iles, but all those daunting and highbrow rules regarding wine are FAperimenliiliuri and drinking wh.il j'oii like ,'tre in. Christmas calories 'lips from a dietician on preventing holiday weight gain. A reminder (o mind your milliners at parties. The potential pitfalls of giving food ;is a gift. Altoona Copyright 2001 TUESDAY, DECEMBER 18, 2001 newsstand Neighbors help free child trapped in submerged car BY CRAIO WILLIAMS Stuff Writer Trapped under water for nearly fivo min- utes, a boy was freed from the seat belt tliat held him. Heroic actions of neighbors and the quick thinking of his mother helped free the boy from the con- fines of the car that flipped onto Us roof and into a pond behind the Logan Valley Mall. Police said Tracy Novak, 38, of Alloona was driving her car Monday about on California Avenue when she lost control of the vehicle, which then crashed through a fence and rolled into a pond in front of a house on Kuskin Drive. The car landed in a natural spring that forms the pond outside Patrick Habits' house, where he lives with his mother, Genny, and father, Frank. Novak, her (1-year-old son James, 3 year- old son Tyler and Harry Colyer, 41, of AHoona were trapped in the car. "I heard them come through the front yard and then through the Habits sairt. "It was eerie, real eerie." By the lime Rabits called for help and rushed out his front door, Colyer and .lames and Tracy Novak had surfaced from their watery entrapment. Tyler remained pinned in his seat. Next door in the parsonage of Calvary Baptist Church, Pastor Ron Anderson also heard a strange noise. "I rushed outside, and a lady was strug- gling at one side of the he said. Soon, Rabits and Anderson were in 55- degree wafer waist-high and struggling to right the car to no avail. "The mother was trying to free her child but couldn't reach. She asked if anyone had a Anderson said. Anderson, who has carried a pocketknife since he was 6 years old, gave it to the moth- er and wrenched open the hack door. Please see A10 2002 WINTER GAMES Three locals will carry Olympic torch BY MICHAKI, EMERY Staff Writer Muhammad Ali is an Olympic gold medalist and a three- time heavyweight boxing champion. He may he the greatest athlete the world has ever known. lint Ali regards his role as a torch- hearer at the 199G Summer Olympics in Atlanta as one of his proudest feats, in one of the event's lasting images, the Olympic Torch Relay culminated with Ali lighting the Olympic cauldron at the opening ceremony. Three local residents will share the torchbearer experience for the 2D02 Winter Games in Salt Lake City. Ray Shaw, 40, Roaring Spring; Jill Simmons, 20, Altoona; and Suzanne Johnson, 55, Tipton, will carry the torch during the 2D02 Winter Olympics Torch Relay. After rela- tives nominated them for the honor, all three were selected to be among the people nationwide serving as torchbcarcrs. Organizers said the spirit of the games is represented by the Olympic torch, passed from city to city by peo- ple who symbolize the qualities of devotion, determination and altruism that signify the essence of the Games. Friends and family say the three local torchbcarers share those quali- ties. Each has a unique 31017 about the path they have (alien to (lie Olympics. Please see A6 THE OLYMPIC FLAME... Ignited by the sun's rays in Olympia, Greece, and kepi in a lanlerri that travels wilh the 2002 Salt Lake Olympic Torch Relay. Travels by automobile, airplane, train, boat, dogsled, skier, horse-drawn sleigh, snowmo- bile, ice skaters and covered wagon. Visits 46 states and covers miles. Travels an average of 208 miles a day during a 12-hbu'r day., Is carried by about torchbcarers lor about 0.2 miles each. Slops for two major community cele- brations each day. On February 8, 2002, enters Salt Lake City lor the Opening Ceremony, marking the official start of the 2002 Olympic Winter Games in Sail Lake. Source." www.2002.coke.com jiorm, CYPER CHARTER SCHOOL HEARING Mirror pholQ by Jason Sipes Jill Simmons 20, of Altoona; Suzanne Johnson 55, of Tipton; and Ray Shaw, 40, of Roaring Spring will join people nationwide to participate in the 2002 Winter Olympics Torch Relay. Shaw and Simmons will carry the torch in Martinsburg, W.Va., and Johnson will run the two- tenths of a mile in Hagerslown, Md. Judge orders payment in investment scandal BY JUDY LIN The Associated Press PITTSBURGH A federal judge has ordered one of the lasl major payouts stemming from an investment scandal that cost 50 school districts and munici- palities million. U.S. Bankruptcy Judge Bernard Marko- vite approved a million payment to the districts and municipalities Monday. The amount brings the total repaid to mil- lion lost by convicted money manager John Gardner Black in one of the state's largest investment scandals. "It's extremely good recovery. In most recoveries, we can only hope to get pennies on the said Richard Finberg, a Pittsburgh attorney repre- senting many of the school districts. Black of Huntingdon County is serving a 41-month sentence in a West Virginia federal prison after being convicted ot investment fraud. Prosecutors said Black persuaded school districts across Pennsyl vania and one in Harfortl County, Md., to invest school construction money in riskj securities in the mid-1990s. Please see A4 interest shown BY JAV Staff Writer About 19 area school districts will consider form- ing a regional charter school next year after a pub- lic hearing Monday brought little resident feed- back. Representatives from the interested school dis- tricts filled the district board room at the Altoona high school for a presentation on the proposed Internet-based school. Those districts have agreed to join an Altoona-led effort to form a regional charier school. "We came up with the concept as a defensive Superintendent Dennis Murray told the group. "It has now become an offensive thrust. We see it as an opportunity to reach any student, any place, anytime." After the meeting, Murray estimated the venture would cost the Altoona Area School District about to start the Central Pennsylvania digital Learning Foundation. That cost is less than the dis- trict says it pays for students who opt to enroll hi several available cyber schools serving the area. State law requires the district to pay for those mostly unregulated services. Money for the, venture will be paid through the Altoona Area School District Foundation. Chestnut Ridge Superintendent Tom Otis said he welcomes competition in education, but he thinks the area districts can claim the Internet-based edu- cation market, Please see AS COMMON COLD Recovery gets boost from new medicine CHICAGO (AP) Scientists have developed [he first medicine proven to reduce the length and severity of the common cold. Whether this is the long-sought cure is debatable, since it doesn't make the sniffles disappear imme- diately. Nevertheless, experls say there is little doubt the medicine which is still months away from drugstores people feel better sooner if their cold is caused by a rhinovirus, the most common culprit. The drug, called pleconaril, makes a runny nose completely clear up a day sooner than usual and begins to ease the symptoms within a day. Many over-the-counter medicines ease cold symptoms by drying up plugged noses and sooth- ing aches. But this drug is the first to actually make a cold go away faster and to work by attack- ing the cold virus itself. Please see A10 BtQFOUR 2 Lottery numbers, A2 Christmas Buffet Luncheon Dec, 21st Subscription or home delivery questions. 9-16-7480 or (800) 287-4480 Reservations Required ITALIAN VILLA 943-B510 Mostly cloudy, Forecast, A2 Business A7 SPREE Look (or the of the shopping spree contest in Ihe 6-page broadsheet included with today's Mirror, j Hospilajs War on terrorism C4 A9 JSJUFfijc Local Dear Abby B4 D4   

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