Tuesday February 20, 2018

Monday’s high 50;Overnight low, 40, rain





To hear today’s forecast, click on arrow below.

Pennsylvania voters will soon be facing several changes…The wolf administration  has issued a directive that all new electronic voting machines must have a paper ballot backup in an effort to thwart election meddling. …whichever side wins, the state’s congressional districts will be re-drawn before the May 15 primary and a long time area lawmaker has accepted a federal position…leaving his seat open for competition.

To hear today’s podcast, click on arrows below.

3:30 pm update. One man died in head-on collision near Coudersport Monday evening. Details below.Audio report is posted immediately

20 Podcast Part A

20 Podcast Part B

20 Podcast Part C


Coudersport based state police this afternoon released information about a fatal head-on collision Monday evening on Route 6 in Eulalia Township. Troopers explained Stephen Dilik of Coudersport going east  and failed to properly negotiate Cemetery Curve allowing his Jeep Grand Cherokee to cross into the westbound lane where it collided with a Cadillac Deville driven by Michael Kellar of Smethport. Both drivers had to be extricated from their vehicles and were taken to Charles Cole Hospital by Coudersport Volunteer ambulance .Police said EMS personnel performed life saving measures enroute to the hospital but Dilick died later. Kellar is listed in fair condition. Coudersport Fire chief Bryan Phelps told Black Forest Broadcasting that both the Eastbound and Westbound lanes were closed to traffic initially and the eastbound lane was opened later, with fire police directing vehicles and providing lighting  through the crash zone for  the State police forensics and accident reconstruction units  All units were finally back in service after midnight

Pennsylvania voters will soon be facing several changes…The wolf administration  has issued a directive that all new electronic voting machines must have a paper ballot backup in an effort to thwart election meddling. …whichever side wins, the state’s congressional districts will be re-drawn before the May 15 primary and a long time area lawmaker has accepted a federal position…leaving his seat open for competition.

Acting Secretary of State Robert Torres has issued a directive that all commonwealth voting systems purchased from February 9, 2018, forward must employ a voter-verifiable paper ballot or paper record of votes cast.

Over the next few years, Pennsylvania’s counties will replace much of their aging voting equipment. This directive informs them of the specifications they must consider when purchasing new voting equipment. The department wants to be sure counties move to voting systems that meet their needs for accessibility and security and make audits easier.

Torres says  directive requiring a paper record of voting is necessary because:

It is in line with modern equipment offered by voting system manufacturers;

It will allow counties to expand their auditing practices. Auditing of voting equipment is an essential part of guaranteeing a system’s integrity and accuracy.

It will enable compliance, if future legislation requiring a paper record is enacted at the state or federal level; and

It will ensure that Pennsylvania’s voting system can achieve resilience by enhancing its ability to withstand and recover more rapidly from disruptions.

The directive does not preclude a county from purchasing equipment that supports and maintains a county’s current voting system for as long as that system is certified for use in the commonwealth.

State Republican lawmakers vow to take the new congressional map issue to the US Supreme Court claiming the state’s high court over-stepped its bounds as they contend, the state constitution leaves map drawing up to the legislature.

Earlier this year, the state supreme court, with a majority of Democrat judges ruled that the Republican plan favored Republicans and ordered a re-drawing. Governor Wolf approved one submitted by Democrats which Republicans says favors Democrats.

Senate President Pro Tempore Joe Scarnati (R-25) and House Speaker Mike Turzai (R-28) issued the following statement after the PA Supreme Court issued its gerrymandered Congressional district map:

“Implementation of this map would create a constitutional crisis where the Pennsylvania Supreme Court is usurping the authority of the Legislative and Executive branches.  We anticipate further action in federal court.

“This entire exercise, while cloaked in ‘litigation,’ is and has been nothing more than the ultimate partisan gerrymander – one brought about by the Democrat Governor acting in concert with liberal politically-connected litigants.

“The League of Women Voters maintains that it filed this suit in order to take partisan politics out of the Congressional redistricting process. This map illustrates that the definition of fair is simply code for a desire to elect more Democrats.”

Rep. Matt Baker (R-Tioga/Bradford/Potter) announced he resigned  from the Pennsylvania House of Representatives effective, Monday, Feb. 19. The decision comes after the 25-year House veteran was offered a presidential appointment to serve the  country.

Baker has accepted the position of Regional Director of the Office of Intergovernmental and External Affairs, Office of the Secretary of the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS). He will be one of 10 HHS regional directors across the country whose region includes Pennsylvania, Delaware, Maryland, Virginia, West Virginia and the District of Columbia. His many new responsibilities will include ensuring HHS maintains close contact with federal, state, local and tribal partners and addresses the needs of communities and individuals served through the numerous HHS programs and policies.

“It is with great sadness that I am leaving the House of Representatives sooner than I would have desired; however, I have been given the opportunity to serve the people of the 68th District and beyond in an even greater capacity than my current position allows,” said Baker. “I am honored to have been offered this opportunity and feel it is the right time in my career to make the transition.”

“I have long felt a call to service, which is why I entered public service to begin with,” said Baker. “My time with the state House has been incredibly rewarding and I look forward to using the knowledge I have gained in the state Legislature and as chairman of the House Health Committee in my new capacity as Regional Director for HHS.

“To those I have served in the 68th District, I am grateful for your faith in me and will continue to serve you in my new position,” continued Baker. “I would also like to thank the President and the Secretary of HHS and the White House staff for this opportunity to be of service to my country.”

Baker, who has served 13 terms and has been chairman of the House Health Committee announced a couple of weeks ago he was “retiring”  and would not seek re-election. The reversal fuels speculation that his retirement statement was a “holding pattern” until the  federal appointment could be announced. While in the state legislature, Baker sponsored a number of bills and has been in the forefront dealing with the opioid crisis.

Baker’s two district offices will remain open to serve the people of the 68th District. The offices can be contacted at 74 Main St. in Wellsboro, telephone (570) 724-1390, and 121 Canton St. in Troy, telephone (570) 297-3045. They are open Monday-Friday, 9 a.m. to noon and 1-4:30 p.m.

State police at Coudersport mid-day today released details about a one-vehicle accident at around 5:30  Saturday afternoon Route 6  in Roulette Township. Troopers report Maria Molina was speeding during snowfall when her  eastbound Chrysler Sebring went off the road on Bilek’s curve traveled to the west side of the road and became disabled. Molina and a 12 year old boy were taken to Charles Cole Hospital for medical evaluation. The driver received a speeding ticket

Details are not yet available from state police regarding a head-on collision last night just after 6:15 pm on Route 6 west of Coudersport Borough in Eulalia Township. However, Coudersport Fire Chief Bryan Phelps told Black Forest Broadcasting that both drivers were seriously injured when their vehicles impacted each other in the west bound lane on Cemetery Curve. One driver was pinned inside and had to be extricated from the wreckage. Both drivers were taken to Charles Cole Hospital by Coudersport Volunteer ambulance. Both the Eastbound and Westbound lanes were closed to traffic initially and the eastbound lane was opened later, with fire police directing vehicles and providing lighting  through the crash zone. All units were finally back in service after midnight

Both truck drivers escaped injury early Saturday morning  in a minor collision  Liberty Township Tioga County. According to Mansfield based state police, Michael McCrum of Petersburg, PA was going north in the left hand passing lane on Route 15 when his Volvo semi drifted to the right and clipped the plow on an International Harvester  with the passenger side mirror driven by Frank Geyer of Morris, PA. Only slight cosmetic damage occurred to the snow plow truck.

State police at Kane at Kane relate no one was hurt in a rear-end collision Saturday night near the Lantz Corners intersection. Troopers say a Chevrolet Cavalier ran into the back of a Chevrolet Cobalt while traveling north on slippery Route 219 as both units slowed down for an accident happening about a half hour earlier at that same location. Since no one was hurt and both cars could be driven from the scene, the fender bender was considered a “non-reportable” and thus no names were released.



Monday, February 19 2018


Sunday’s high, 36; Overnight low, 27, no precipitation







To hear today’s forecast, click on arrow below.


OLbituaries: Lillian McPhail, Harrison Valley and Darreyll Connolly, Roulette

Westfield man jailed in connection to bank robbery…Suspect accused of trying to buy gun illegally….Johnsonburg woman charged with multiple traffic offenses after crash in Elk County…Medical problem causes Tioga County accident…..Weedville camp burglary probed….store cited for selling tobacco to underage customer….. Area students invited to enter art contest…..

To  hear today’s podcast, click on arrows below.

19 Podcast Part A

19 Podcast Part B

19 Podcast Part C

A Westfield resident is sitting in the Tioga County Prison in lieu of bail after being nabbed in connection to a bank robbery last week. Jared S. Pierce, 29, was charged with two  counts of Robbery, Theft, and Receiving Stolen property. During an ongoing investigation the Westfield Borough Police Department identified Pierce as the primary suspect. Following a tip that Pierce was at a residence in Cowanesque with a large amount of cash, a search warrant was obtained and served by the officers of the Westfield Borough Police Department, Galeton Police Department and Coudersport PSP. Pierce was located and taken into custody without incident. Pierce was arraigned and is currently incarcerated at the Tioga County Prison pending bail.

Coudersport based state police have not released the name of a suspect who is accused of lying on an application to buy a gun last fall. Troopers claim the Coudersport man lied while trying to buy a weapon on October 27 on Route 607 in Austin on October 27. The purchase was denied by the seller.

An Austin driver escaped injury Friday morning when his vehicle sideswiped a legally parked truck in that town. Troopers claim 68 year old James Hooftallen was traveling east on Thorn Street when his vehicle crossed to the other side of the road and collided with a 2014 Ford causing minor  damage to the  driver side front door and mirror. Police allege Hooftallen left the scene without reporting the damage.

Numerous traffic offenses have been filed against a Johnsonburg woman after a collision early Sunday morning in Jones Township, Elk County. Ridgway based state police say Kirsten Cowan-McGill was headed east when her Kia Forte went off the right side of the road, hit a mailbox and a tree before stopping. Troopers claim Cowan-McGill fled the scene with her SUV partially parked  in the roadway. After her identification was determined, she was charged with multiple traffic violations including failing to change name and/or address.

A medical emergency is blamed for an accident  last Wednesday morning in Tioga Township., Tioga County. Mark Stevens, 62, of Wellsboro was going north when his northbound Nissan Murano went off the road, and sheared off a utility pole before stopping. Stevens was taken to Soldiers and Sailors Hospital for evaluation and treatment.

A Westfield man escaped injury Friday morning in a minor collision in Brookfield Township. A Chevrolet Impala driven by Delbert Houghtaling came to rest after colliding with a stone mailbox off of the North Fork Road.

Ridgway based state police investigated a camp burglary discovered Sunday morning on the Mt. Zion Road in Weedville. Apparently burglars did not take anything the camp owned by Michael Civils  of Duncansville, PA after forcing  their way inside sometime since February 4. The glass int the main door was broken by the crooks who then reached inside to unlock thedoor.

A St. Marys store has been cited for selling tobacco to a minor. Troopers in Ridgway claim the youth bought a pack of Newport cigarettes Saturday afternoon at the Get Go on the Million Dollar Highway.

Seventh through twelfth graders who live in Bradford, Potter and Tioga counties and attend public or private schools or are home-schooled are invited to submit three entries for the 2018 Gmeiner Youth Art Exhibit. “Students can submit any type of artwork they want,” said Gmeiner Director Anna Wales.

The deadline to enter is Tuesday, Feb. 20. Students who are home-schooled or not currently enrolled in an art class at a public or private school must photograph each piece they plan to enter and email each photograph separately to gmeinerartscenter@gmail.com along with a three to five-sentence artist’s statement describing how and why they created that particular piece.

Art teachers for students in public or private schools are asked to create a slideshow of their students’ entries and artist statements and email the slideshow to gmeinerartscenter@gmail.com.

For the show, accepted videos have to be looped and have a pixel aspect ratio of 720 by 480 or higher and two-dimensional works, such as sculptures, ceramics and glass have to be 48 inches in any direction, weigh less than 70 pounds and fit through a six by eight-foot doorway. The accepted videos will be shown on a flat-screen monitor provided by the Gmeiner. Artists are encouraged but not required to mat or frame accepted artwork, such as photographs, paintings, drawings and mixed media,

“All art submitted must be original not a copy of someone else’s work

Submitted entries will be juried and selected for the exhibit based on quality, presentation and correctly following the required application process by a committee of artists from the Gmeiner.

Jurists are Carol Ann Simon Cillo of Lycoming County, Steve Getz of Clinton County and Gmeiner Director Anna Wales. They will judge the submitted works between Feb. 21 and 27.

Approximately 50 pieces will be included in the exhibit. On Feb. 27, teachers, public and private school students not currently enrolled in an art class and home-schooled students will receive an email notifying them that their entries have or have not been accepted.

Accepted artwork has to be delivered to the Gmeiner between Wednesday, March 14 and Sunday, March 18.

The opening reception for the exhibit will be on Tuesday, March 27 from 6 to 8 p.m. At 7:30 p.m. a total of $500 in cash scholarships for the continuation of their artistic endeavors will be presented to students who created the 10 pieces of artwork selected by the jurists.

With the exception of the opening reception on March 27, the exhibit will be open from 2-5 p.m. seven days a week beginning Monday, March 26 and ending at 5 p.m. on Wednesday, April 4. “This is a special show with special hours,” Wales said.

Complete details and applications for this event are available on the Gmeiner website www.gmeinerartscenter.com and on the Gmeiner Facebook page by clicking on 2018-youth-art-exhibit-pdf


Lillian Pauline McPHAIL, 101, of Harrison Valley, PA, died Thursday, February 15, 2018 in Sweden Valley Manor, Coudersport, PA. Born July 25, 1916, in Westfield, PA, she was the daughter of G. Gordon and Cleva Luce Walters. On June 13, 1945, in Detroit, MI, she married Charles McPhail, who predeceased her on September 24, 1984. She was employed by Sears in Detroit, MI for 18 years.  Pauline attended the Federated Church in Harrison Valley. Surviving are nieces and nephews.  In addition to her husband, she was predeceased by four brothers, Merritt L. “Pete” Walters, Harold Walters, Clyde Walters, and Robert F. Walters;  and three sisters, Bernice Clark, Arlene Steadman, and Doris Van Pelt. Friends may call Monday, February 19, 2018 from 6:00 – 8:00 PM at the Olney Funeral Home & Cremation Service, Ulysses, PA, where Funeral Services will be held on Tuesday at 11:00 AM.  Her nephew, the Rev. Robert Walters, will officiate.  Burial will be in Ulysses Cemetery. Memorials may be made to the Federated Church, Harrison Valley, PA 16927.  Online condolences may be expressed at www.olneyfuneralhome.com.

Darryell D. Connelly, 56, of Second St.,Roulette,  passed away Wednesday (Feb. 14, 2018) in UPMC Hamot, Erie, PA.

Born October 5, 1961, in Port Allegany, he was a son of Dale C. and Judy Day Connelly.
Darryell was a lifetime resident of the area and attended Port Allegany High School.
He had been employed with John Brown, Gary Fessenden, Pave-N-Save, and most recently worked in local stone quarries.
He was avid outdoorsman who enjoyed hunting, but most of all, he loved his dogs. He was also a car show enthusiast.
He is survived by his longtime companion and former wife, Sandra Pekarski, five brothers, Donald D. (Kimberly) Connelly of Eldred, Drexel T. Connelly of Coudersport, Dale C. “Rusty” (Cindy) Connelly, Jr. of Olean, NY, Darren L. Connelly of Port Allegany, and Dana A. Connelly of Pageland, SC; a sister, Darlene F. Connelly of Erie, PA; and several nieces and nephews.
He is preceded in death by his parents, and a daughter, Stacie L. Connelly.
A memorial service will be held at a later date, time and place to be announced by his family.
In lieu of memorials, donations can be made in memory of Darryell and sent to: Sandra Pekarski, P.O. Box 79, Roulette, PA 16746.
Funeral arrangements are under the direction of the Switzer Funeral Home, Port Allegany.

Condolences can be made to:  Sandra Pekarski
P.O. Box 79
Roulette, PA. 16746



Friday February 16, 2018

February Lines--photo by Gerri Miller

Thursday’s high, 59; Overnight low, 44; light rain








Causer to host property tax/rent rebates appointments…..PA’s Route 6 Corridor has presidential connections Two Elk County trailers torched this morning….Ulysses woman accused of unwanted physical contact….Elk County man arrested for throwing onion at wife…..State police cite Roulette man for DUI with underage person in car……next on air report after 10:06 pm on www.blackforestbroadcasting.com Or click on link located on our home page.

To hear today’s podcast, click on arrow below.

Obituary: Edna Perkins, Westfield (Ulysses)

Rep. Martin Causer announces several events designed to help eligible senior citizens and people with disabilities file for the state’s Property Tax/Rent Rebate program will get underway next week. There is no fee to participate, and no appointments are required. The schedule is as follows:

Wednesday, Feb. 21:

Eldred Senior Center, 169 Main St., Eldred – 9:30-11 a.m.

Oswayo Valley Senior Center, 106 S. Oswayo St., Shinglehouse – 9:30-11:30 a.m.

Smethport Senior Center, 119 W. Main St., Smethport – 1-2:30 p.m.

Coudersport Senior Center, 171 Route 6 West, Coudersport – 1-3 p.m.

Thursday, Feb. 22

Harrison Valley Community Building, 205 E. Main St., Harrison Valley – 9-10:30 a.m.

Tuesday, Feb. 27

Kane Senior Center, 100 S. Fraley St., Kane – 1-3 p.m.

Wednesday, Feb. 28

Emporium Senior Center, 213 ½ S. Maple St., Emporium – 9:30-11 a.m.

Port Allegany Senior Center, 216 N. Main St., Port Allegany – 1-2:30 p.m.

Tuesday, March 6

Bradford Senior Center, 60 Campus Dr., Bradford – 9:30-11 a.m.

The Property Tax/Rent Rebate program benefits eligible Pennsylvanians who are 65 years or older, widows and widowers 50 years or older, and those 18 years or older with disabilities. Eligibility income limits are set at $15,000 for renters and $35,000 for homeowners, excluding 50 percent of Social Security, Supplemental Security Income and Railroad Retirement Tier 1 benefits.

Free assistance with filing the forms is also available at Causer’s  offices in Bradford (78 Main St., first floor, phone 814-362-4400); Coudersport (107 S. Main St., Room 1, phone 814-274-9769); or Kane (55 Fraley St., phone 814-837-0880). Forms and additional information are available at www.RepCauser.com.

Monday is “Presidents’ Day” a legal holiday for many.

Across the Northern Tier of Pennsylvania, several sites can be found that

have a link to a few US Presidents. As we say on the PA Route 6 Heritage

Corridor – “DO 6” to discover the following places:


  1. George Washington Trail: Celebrating its 265th Anniversary, theWashington’s Trail 1753 is a driving route through western PA (Crawford andErie Counties) commemorating George Washington’s first military anddiplomatic mission in the fall and winter of 1753-1754.  One key site is thestatue of George Washington, wearing the uniform of an officer in theVirginia Militia in Waterford, Erie County.


  1. Lincoln House Door: In Wellsboro’s downtown Historic District, the 1850

Italianate residence at 140 Main Street is known as the “Lincoln Door

House”. When Dr. and Mrs. J. H. Shearer purchased the house in 1858, the

front door was given to the Shearers by close friends from Springfield,

Illinois, Abraham and Mary Todd Lincoln. This door has become a popular stop

for history buffs traveling along Pennsylvania Route 6.


  1. Lake Winola: In Wyoming County, this popular destination for boating,

fishing, and seasonal events was the summer residence of the Rodham family.

Hillary Rodham Clinton, one of the family’s most known members, served not

only as a First Lady during the 1990’s but also has the distinction of being

the first woman to head the ticket for a political party as the 2016

Democratic candidate for President.


  1. Dorflinger Glass Museum: In White Mills, Wayne County, the Dorflinger

Glass Museum features one display case dedicated to examples of Presidential

glass and also items made on order to the Tiffany silver company for the

wedding of William Vanderbilt to Virginia Fair. The first Dorflinger glass

for the White House was ordered by Mary Todd Lincoln. In 1891, a new

Dorflinger design was selected by Caroline Harrison, wife of President

Benjamin Harrison. Dorflinger glass was ordered for the White House through

the presidency of Woodrow Wilson


  1. Lincoln Flag: The Column’s Museum in Milford, Pike County, is home to the

bloodstained, 36 star, American flag which played an important role in the

events at Ford’s Theatre on the night President Lincoln was assassinated in



  1. Hotel Fauchere: The historic hotel, also in Milford, has hosted or fed a

number of presidents, including both Roosevelts, JFK and Warren Harding.

Gifford Pinchot and Teddy Roosevelt sketched out the plan for the National

Park Service (as part of the Interior Department) and US Forest Service (as

part of the Agriculture Department) on a linen napkin at the hotel.  A few

days later, Pinchot’s chauffeur returned the napkin, freshly-cleaned and


The state police fire marshal tells Black Forest Broadcasting News that two Sandy Township  mobile homes were torched early this morning . Volunteer fire fighters were dispatched just before 1:30 am to trailers located on the Timetobid Road. One of the mobile homes was owned by 71 year old Joan Cameroni  of Dubois and sustained $15,000 in damage. The second trailer was abandoned. Damage there estimated to be $5,000. The units were not adjacent to each other and the investigation is continuing.  Anyone with information is asked to call Trooper Russell Stewart at 814.776.6136 or the Sandy Township police department.

Coudersport based state police have arrested 59 year old Belinda Empson of Ulysses for harassment. Troopers claim during an argument Tuesday afternoon,  Empson subjected Sabrina Burnside, 30 also of Ulysses to unwanted physical contact by putting her hand on Burnside’s shoulder.

A Weedville man has been charged with simple assault and harassment for a domestic violence attack recently on Spring Run Road in Jay Township. Daniel Hanes, 51, is accused of throwing a large onion at his wife, Christine, 50 causing a visible injury to the back of her leg.

DUI and child endangerment charges have been lodged against 48 year old Bryan Knauer of Roulette by state police at the Coudersport barracks. Troopers claim when they stopped Knauer on Route 6 in Roulette Township on January 31, they detected an odor of alcoholic beverage emitting from the vehicle and upon investigation determined he was driving under the influence. A 17 year old girl was a passenger in Kanuer’s car.

State police at Mansfield have recently arrested two drivers for DUI. Jaycob Myers of Blossburg was charged after an investigation into a vehicle  crash on Route 414 in Union Township on November 24.Shaun Kappel, 33, of Wellsboro was arrested when he was stopped on Route 6 in Richmond Township, New Years Eve.

No injuries were reported for an Emporium  driver after his car wrecked on the Dividing Ridge Road in Homer Township, Potter County Tuesday afternoon. Frank Costanzo, 66, was going north on Route 872 just past the Grom Hill Road when his Chrysler 200 crossed the road and collided with a snow embankment and went into a ditch before stopping.

Coudersport based state police  are investigating an ID theft occurring earlier this month. Cyber thieves accessed a 35 year old Mills man’s account to have a new card sent to an address unknown by the victim.


Edna M. PERKINS, 85, of Westfield, PA, formerly of Ulysses, PA, died Wednesday, February 14, 2018 in her home. Born November 16, 1932, in Ulysses, she was the daughter of Kenneth “Pete” and Sarah F. Hilfiger Empson. She was married to Dorr A. “Bud” Perkins, who survives. Edna and her husband owned and operated a potato and dairy farm in Ulysses for many years.

Surviving besides her husband, Bud, are:  four children, Terry (Diane) Perkins of Coudersport, Gary (Teresa) Perkins of Coudersport, Kenneth J. (Tammy) Perkins of Ulysses, and Carla Baumgarner of Wellsboro;  nine grandchildren;  12 great-grandchildren;  a brother, Joe (Mae) Empson of Ulysses;  three sisters, Ann Hemphill of Minot, ND, Marie (Dave) Cline of Wellsville, NY, and Maxine (William) Updyke of Genesee;  several nieces and nephews.  She was predeceased by a daughter-in-law, Melody Perkins;  a sister, Jane A. Empson;  and two brothers, John Hilfiger and Phillip K. Empson.

Friends may call Saturday, February 17, 2018 from 2:00 – 4:00 and 7:00 – 9:00 PM at the Olney Funeral Home & Cremation Service, Ulysses, PA, where Funeral Services will be held on Sunday at 2:00 PM.  The Rev. Frank Mickle will officiate.  Burial will be in Ulysses Cemetery.

In lieu of flowers, memorials may be made to the Gold Church, 2402 SR 49 W, Ulysses, PA 16948, Ulysses Library, P.O. Box 316, Ulysses, PA 16948, or Ulysses Cemetery, P.O. Box 153, Ulysses, PA 16948.

Online condolences may be expressed at www.olneyfuneralhome.com.

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