Friday March 30 2018

Photo by Gerri Miller

A photo shoot was held in Thursday’s rain in front of the Coudersport Theatre to promote the Eliot Ness Fest which will be held July 2-22 in Coudersport. Andy Zappone of Phoenixville  brought his Model A and a couple models for the shoot. To hear one of the committee members, Bill Pekarski, talk about the event, click on “Black Forest Trails” on our home page. Zappone, not being politically correct said the caption should read, Happy Valentine’s Day Italian Style.”

Thursday’s high, 55; Overnight low, 36; .92” rain






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

SUN NIGHT- LOW 23  State police urge caution while traveling this Easter Weekend….local governments and recreation and conservation groups encouraged to apply for grants before April 11….State police in Coudersport ask Crimestoppers to help find shooter who wounded a camp owner last fall in Austin…..Mansfield state police arrest two suspects for DUI….

Obituary: Richard “Dick Sawyer”, Shinglehouse

To hear today’s podcast click on arrow below.

Captain Bernard J. Petrovsky, commanding officer, Troop C, Pennsylvania State Police, Punxsutawney, is asking drivers to be extra cautious while traveling throughout the Commonwealth over the Easter holiday weekend.With Easter being the first major holiday of the spring, many people will take the opportunity to gather with friends and relatives.  Please remember to obey the posted speed limit and buckle up while traveling to and from any events, he said.Easter signals the end of winter, and the beginning of spring.  With the warmer weather, more people are working and playing in close proximity to roadways so motorists should exercise extreme care when traveling.“Warmer weather also increases the number of motorcycles utilizing our roadways, please be vigilant as to their presence in traffic as their smaller size can often be overlooked by fellow motorists,” Petrovsky added.With the increase in vehicular traffic over the holiday weekend, troopers will be patrolling roadways placing special emphasis on Aggressive Driving and controlling the speed of traffic to help make highways safer for those travelling throughout the commonwealth.“Drive carefully and as always, buckle up. It saves lives,” Petrovsky said.

Department of Conservationa nd Natural Resources Secretary Cindy Adams Dunn reminds local governments and recreation and conservation organizations that grant applications now are being accepted through DCNR’s Community Conservation Partnerships Program.

The grants are administered across the state by DCNR through the Community Conservation Partnerships Program. Funding comes from the Keystone Fund, which is generated from a portion of the realty transfer tax; the Environmental Stewardship Fund; the ATV/Snowmobile Fund generated through fees for licenses; and federal monies.

Grants benefit:

Planning, acquisition, and development of public parks

Recreation areas

Motorized and non-motorized trails

River conservation and access

Stream buffers

Conservation of open space

Regional and statewide partnerships to better develop and manage resources

The 2018 grant application round opened January 22 and will close April 11. Funds will be awarded for applications that meet priorities established in the Statewide Comprehensive Outdoor Recreation Plan.

Primary source of grant funding is the Keystone Fund, which is celebrating its 25th anniversary this year. Since 1993 through the Keystone Fund:

More than 300 trail projects have been built and improved

More than 2,400 community park development projects were completed

117,400 acres have been conserved

Late last year, Governor Tom Wolf announced an investment of $44 million for 266 projects across Pennsylvania that create new recreational opportunities, conserve natural resources, and help revitalize local communities.

Those 2017 investments are benefitting a variety of proposals, including:

49 trail projects

Protecting almost 8,000 acres of open space

Nine projects for planting riparian buffers along streams

14 projects for rivers conservation

More than 100 projects to develop or rehabilitate recreation, park, and conservation areas and facilities

For details on DCNR’s Community Conservation Partnerships Program, visit DCNR’s grants web page. For more information on the Statewide Comprehensive Outdoor Recreation Plan, visit the plan’s website.

The Pennsylvania State Police, Troop F, Coudersport, continue their investigation of a shooting that occurred at a two-story hunting camp/seasonal residence located at 13 Deerfield Road, Austin, Potter County, Pa. The camp is located approximately 200 yards east of State Route 872 over a small embankment.

Police said that an unknown suspect came to the camp and fired two gunshots for unknown reasons on Oct. 21, 2017, at approximately 2:30 a.m. One of the rounds traveled through a first-story window of the camp and struck the victim, a 74-year-old male from Dover, York County, Pa., in the chest/abdomen area as he was sitting upright in his bed. The unknown suspect then fled the area in an unknown direction.

Police say the victim sustained minor injuries and has now recovered from the incident. They also go on to say that as of the incident, they have gotten no information about the assailant.

Police are urging anyone who may have information pertaining to this shooting, any other serious crime or wanted person to call Pennsylvania Crime Stoppers Toll Free at 1-800-4PA-TIPS. All callers remain anonymous and may be eligible for a cash reward up to $2,000.

Troopers at the Mansfield barracks  arrested two Tioga County residents this week  but have not released their names. A 36 year old Tioga man was charged when police after police responded to a report of a disturbance at a home on Thank You Mom Lane in Tioga Township. When they arrived, officers discovered the man was the subject of an active Tioga County bench want. He was allegedly found  possession of a small amount of drugs and paraphernalia. DUI charges are pending against a 44 year old Middlebury Center woman after a one-vehicle crash early Sunday morning at the intersection of N. Main Street and Fish Street in Tioga Township. Authorities claim when they investigated they found the woman had been driving her 2015 Hyundai Elantra under the influence of alcohol.

Coudersport state police are advising motorists they will be conducting sobriety checkpoints throughout Potter County this spring.


 Richard E. “Dick” Sawyer Jr., 65, of Shinglehouse, passed away with his loving wife by his side Tuesday (March 27, 2018) in Robert Packer Hospital, Sayre, after a short illness.

Born Jan. 7, 1953 in Allentown, he was a son of Richard E. Sr. and Gladys Mengel Sawyer. On Aug. 24, 1985 in Hinsdale, N.Y., he married Twila M. Dunham, who survives.

Dick was a graduate of Brandywine High School in Topton. He was employed at Caloric in Topton and was later employed by Potter Pak in Coudersport.

Dick was a member of Grace Bible Independent Baptist Church in Shinglehouse, and a proud lifetime member of the NRA. He was an avid hunter and fisherman. He loved to garden and he loved animals, especially his yellow lab, Jake. He enjoyed woodworking and word search puzzles.

Surviving besides his wife are a sister, Patricia (Arlan) Christ; two brothers, Dennis (Sue) Sawyer and Thomas (Stacy) Sawyer; and many nieces and nephews.

In addition to his parents, Dick was predeceased by a sister, Linda Pauley; and a brother, Gary Sawyer.

Friends may call from 6 to 8 p.m. Friday (March 30, 2018) and from 9 to 11 a.m. Saturday (March 31, 2018) at Grace Bible Independent Baptist Church, 392 Coons Crossing Road, Shinglehouse, where funeral services will follow at 11 a.m. with Pastor Thomas J. Isaacson, officiating. Burial will be in Maple Grove Cemetery, Shinglehouse.
In lieu of flowers, memorials may be made to Grace Bible Independent Baptist Church, 392 Coons Crossing Road, Shinglehouse, Pa. 16748.

Dick’s family has entrusted his care to Kevin J. Dusenbury, funeral director/owner of the Virgil L. Howard Funeral Home, Shinglehouse.

To express condolences or share a fond memory of Dick, please visit


Thursday March 29, 2018


Wednesday’s high, 50; Overnight low, 37, trace of rain







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

BFB Headlines (Thursday March 29, 2018)Roulette man jailed for alleged sexual assault of teen….Eldred resident accused of repeatedly punching  a woman…..Police in Ridgway accuse St. Marys man of shoplifting at Walmart….Causer to  hold gun rights and safety seminar……Slide repair begins tomorrow on Locey Creek Road in Tioga County…next on-air report after 12:06 pm today on

Obituaries: Forrest “Pat” Bright, Coudersort & Shirley Rossi, Smethport

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


A Roulette man has been jailed  on sexual assault charges and related offenses, including child endangerment,  for an incident reportedly taking place in his Main Street home on the night of March 19. Jedidiah Davis,32, was arrested the next day by Sweden Township police, who provide coverage to Roulette Township and unable to post bail after arraignment was committed to the Potter County Jail. A preliminary hearing which was originally scheduled for this week was continued until April 13. Authorities claim a 13 year old girl awoke at around 10:30 pm to find Dais in her bed attired only in his underwear and touching her inappropriately. According the arresting officer, Davis admitted wearing only underwear and he “felt” that was inappropriate.

State police at Kane have arrested an Eldred man for simple assault for an attack reportedly taking place Sunday morning at a home of Railroad Street  in that town. Troopers allege Justin Safford struck Amanda Taylor of Smethport several times in the head, face, leg and arm with a closed fist during an argument. He was charged with  simple assault, and harassment in District Court.

Yet another St. Marys resident has been accused of shoplifting at the St. Marys Walmart. State police assert 29 year old Alex Weiss stole three items valued at $63.42 Sunday afternoon. He’s now facing charges in district court.

A Liberty man escaped injury in a car/deer accident Sunday afternoon in Tioga Township, Tioga County. According to Mansfield based state police Todd Morehart swerved his southbound Jeep Wrangler to avoid a deer  on Painter Run Road causing the SUV’s right tires to go into a drainage ditch where it traveled for several feet until the undercarriage got caught on a culvert where it stopped


Rep. Martin Causer (R-Turtlepoint) is inviting area residents to a free Firearms Safety and Rights Seminar set for 6 p.m. Thursday, April 26, at the Shinglehouse Volunteer Fire Department, 121 S. Puritan St., Shinglehouse.

Speakers will include Potter County District Attorney Andy Watson and Sheriff Glenn Drake, who will discuss Pennsylvania’s concealed carry laws, the Castle Doctrine and other valuable information regarding state gun laws.

“Whether you already own firearms or are just thinking about making a purchase, this forum provides a great opportunity to learn more about your rights and how to handle your firearms safely,” Causer said.

People who wish to attend the seminar are encouraged to register in advance by visiting or calling the Coudersport office at 814-274-9769. Seating is limited.

A slide repair project on Route 4017 (Locey Creek Road) in Osceola Township, Tioga County, is set to begin this Friday. The project is located approximately 0.25 miles north of Briar Hill Road and approximately 0.5 miles south of Route 49.Work includes excavation, rock placement, drainage, paving, guide rail placement and line painting.A detour will be implemented beginning Monday, April 9 using Route 4027 (Cummings Creek Road) and Route 49. Work is expected to be completed in late August. Brubacher Excavating Inc. of Bowmansville is the prime contractor on this $1 million project.


Forrest J. “Pat” Bright, 90, of Hebron Center, passed away on Monday, March 26, 2018, in Geisinger Medical Center, Danville, after a short illness.

Born on March 22, 1928 in Bradford, he was a son of Clifford and Emma Skinner Bright.  On October 19, 1962 in Ohio, he married Shirley F. Gress, who passed away on August 1, 2008.

Forrest was employed as a truck driver and heavy equipment mechanic at the coal mines in Sterling Run, having worked for several companies, including Ted Quinn, John Rydesky and Ed Nestlerode.

He was a member of Hebron Union Church in Coudersport. He loved to tinker and put things together—making something out of nothing.

Surviving are two sons, Jay A. (Jenny) Bright of Coudersport and Brian D. Bright of Hebron Center; a daughter, Nancy (Bradley) Strahl of Emporium; three granddaughters, Jordan L. Bright, Maycee G. Bright, and Gina (Dana) Kepple; five grandsons, James A. Bright, Dane F. Bright, Bryce R. Bright, Gavin F. Bright, and Donald Osti; seven great-grandchildren; and several nieces and nephews.

In addition to his parents and wife, Forrest was predeceased by two sisters and three brothers.

Friends may call from 10am to 11am on Friday, March 30, 2018, at the Hebron Union Church, Route 44, Coudersport, where funeral services will follow at 11am with Pastor Hank St. Amour and the Rev. Howard R. Burnham, pastor emeritus, officiating.  Burial will be in Rathbone Cemetery, Coneville.

In lieu of flowers, memorials may be made to Hebron Union Church, 1149 SR 44N, Coudersport, PA 16915.

Forrest’s family has entrusted his care to Kevin J. Dusenbury, funeral director/owner of the Virgil L. Howard Funeral Home, Shinglehouse.

To express condolences or share a fond memory of Forrest, please visit



Shirley E. Rossi, 90, of Smethport, passed away Tuesday (March 27, 2018) in the Sena Kean Manor, Smethport.She was born March 28, 1927 in Mt. Jewett, a daughter of Carl E. and Olga E. Johnson. On June 8, 1946 in St. Elizabeth Church, Smethport, she married Joseph P. Rossi, Sr., who died November 8, 1985.Mrs. Rossi was a graduate of Smethport High School and worked locally retiring from Backus Company of Smethport with over 40 years of employment. She was a volunteer at Sena Kean Manor in Smethport and for the Red Cross Blood Mobile. She is survived by:one daughter: Donna M. (“Crick”) Benjamin of Smethport,one son: Joseph P. (Sue) Rossi, Jr. of Smethport,five grandchildren: Paul and Todd Rossi, Tammy Nolte, Christopher and Ryan Benjamin,eight great-grandchildren: Kyle, Nicole and Matthew Nolte, Andrew and Evan Rossi, Ayden, P.J. and Autumn Benjamin,one great-great grandchild: Owen Nolte,two sisters: Gladys Reinard of Smethport and Bonnie F. Walter of Paw Paw, MI,and several nieces and nephews.In addition to her parents and husband, Shirley was preceded in death by two brothers, Wayne and Kenneth Johnson, along with one sister, Dorothy Herzog.Visitation will be held on Thursday from 4-7 PM at Hartle-Tarbox Funeral Homes, Inc., 2 Bank St., Smethport. Funeral services will be held on Friday, March 30 at 10:00 am from the Free Christian Evangelical Church, Smethport, with the Rev. Thomas Beam, pastor of the Hope Lutheran Church, officiating. Burial will be in the Rose Hill Cemetery, Smethport.Memorials, if desired, may be made to Sena Kean Manor, Hope Lutheran Church, both of Smethport, or McKean County Hospice. Online condolences may be made at are under the direction of the Hartle-Tarbox Funeral Homes, Inc., Smethport.

Wednesday March 28, 2018

Black Forest Express

Photo by Gerri Miller


Tuesday’s high, 39; overnight low, 33; .22” of rain







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

Obituary: Kenneth Hohn, Coudersport

Rep.Causer hold information meeting on forest conservation easements….State police warn of another scam…Elderly Ulysses man bilked out of money in phone scam…Two area women arrested for shoplifting…Roaring Branch man accused of domestic violence attack…Several instances of vandalism investigated in Elk County…..

To hear today’s podcast, click on arrow below

The House Agriculture and Rural Affairs Committee, chaired by Rep. Martin Causer (R-Turtlepoint), held an informational meeting on Monday to discuss forest conservation easements and recent PENNVEST actions that would finance the purchase of private forestlands and place conservation easements on a portion of that land.

At meetings last fall and in January, PENNVEST approved loans totaling $50.8 million, at an interest rate of 1 percent, to Lyme Timber Company, a timber management firm based in New Hampshire. The funding will be used toward the purchase of more than 60,000 acres of private forest land in Cameron, Clinton, Elk, Jefferson, McKean and Potter counties. As part of the agreement, the company will place approximately 9,000 acres of the land into a permanent working forest conservation easement. The plan also includes an acid mine drainage abatement project amounting to about $700,000.

Department of Conservation and Natural Resources (DCNR) Secretary Cindy Dunn told committee members the use of forest conservation easements was one of the top recommendations set out by the governor’s Green Ribbon Task Force on Forest Products, Conservation and Jobs. The recommendation was aimed at addressing concerns about changes in ownership of large tracts of forestland and the potential impact of “parcelization” on the forest products industry and jobs. An easement, she noted, conserves the land while also keeping it in private hands and on the local tax rolls.

Causer questioned DCNR about whether the public would have access to the lands for hunting and recreation. According to John Norbeck, deputy secretary for parks and forestry, DCNR intends to make the lands within the easement open to the public. The remaining acreage is under private ownership and access would be determined by Lyme Timber. Causer indicated that was a concern to him since public money was used to help finance the purchase of those lands.

Dunn’s testimony was followed by that of Brion Johnson, executive director of PENNVEST, who outlined the mission of the agency, which includes clean water efforts. He discussed the steps taken to review the proposal from Lyme Timber Company and to obtain confirmation from the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) that it would be eligible for clean water funds. In response to questions from Causer and other lawmakers, he agreed to provide the committee with information from PENNVEST legal counsel as to how the agency believes the transactions qualify for funding under state law.

The next three testifiers expressed concern about the use of public funds at a very low interest rate to support the purchase of these forestlands by a private business. Keith Klingler, president of the Pennsylvania Landowners Association, believes it was not an appropriate use of PENNVEST funding and argued subdivision is not occurring on large forest tracts. His bigger concern is with “government land sprawl.”

Arthur Stewart and Tyler Martin, president and vice president of the Caledonia Land Company in Warren County, also indicated large scale timberlands are not being subdivided at “an unprecedented rate” and shared census data to support their position. Stewart lamented the use of a forest conservation easement in a region that already hosts vast amounts of state and federal land, saying it is another limitation to development opportunity. He also questioned the use of PENNVEST funds to benefit one private business owner over another.

Lawmakers posed a number of questions during the course of the meeting, many of which focused on the whether the PENNVEST loan to a private company to purchase private land was an appropriate use of public funds. Causer asked if additional proposals similar to the Lyme Timber proposal were in the works, and Johnson indicated there is one currently under review that involves land in Elk County. Johnson declined to share the application until it is presented to the PENNVEST board.

Members also expressed concern that PENNVEST was created to address, and should continue to prioritize, municipal water and sewer projects across the Commonwealth. Many communities are faced with deteriorating infrastructure as well as mandated upgrades, such as municipal separate storm sewer projects, and are in need of funding to support those efforts. Johnson indicated those projects are “front and center” for the agency.

Other issues discussed include the value of the timber on the land purchased by Lyme Timber Company, the number of jobs supported by the project, the potential for additional portions of this land to be placed in forest conservation easement status, the value and future use of the easement, ownership of mineral rights on the property and more.

For more information, written testimony and video of the informational meeting are available at www.repcau

State police have confirmed yet another scam. A local woman had a voice mail message telling her to call 844-280 -8144 for a refund from Microsoft  which is supposedly going out of business. The caller told the woman  to go into her computer and they would do something and refund her money in an amount of about $500.00.  This is a scam but their calls are persistent. The victim told state police she has received numerous such calls everyday., State police verified it is a scam and warned about acting upon the request. If you believe Microsoft is going out of business, I have some ocean front property in Arizona to sell you.

A Roaring Branch PA man has been charged with harassment and unwanted physical contact for a domestic violence assault allegedly occurring on the evening of March 19. State police claim 49 year old Vincent Robinson Jr. assaulted his wife, Ann, during an argument in their home on Canton Street. He is now facing charges in District Court.

An ID theft is being investigated by state police at Coudersport. James McPherson, 79 of  Ulysses received several phone calls from someone claiming to be from Direct TV telling him that he needed systems updates and must provide a down payment. Finally, McPherson gave in and provided a credit card number which the criminals used to purchase items from a clothing store in the amount of $159.50.

State police at Coudersport have arrested 45 year old Heather Weimer of Wellsville, NY for theft. Authorities allege Weimer stole six Bic lighters from the Genesee Acorn Market last Friday.

Retail theft charges have also been filed against a Ridgway woman. State police in that town assert 30 year old Heather Hulton took three items from the St. Marys  Walmart Monday evening . The merchandise was valued a total of $12.02 and the charges have been filed with a Distract Judge.

A 19 year old Bolivar, NY resident has been arrested for drug possession by state police at the Coudersport barracks. Troopers explained that when they stopped Robert Thatcher on Route 6 in Ulysses Township early last Friday morning they found him in possess of a small amount of pot and some drug paraphernalia.

State police at Ridgway are looking for vandals who spray painted several bridges at various locations around Weedville in Jay Toiwnship between 8:00 pm Sunday and 6:00 am Monday.


Kenneth Wayne Hohn, 74, a longtime resident of Coudersport, formerly of Mira Loma, California, passed away in his home with his loving wife by his side on Saturday, March 24, 2018, after a long illness.

Born on August 4, 1943 in Monongahela, Pa., he was a son of Robert and Mini Murray Hohn.  On August 20, 1983 in Anaheim, California, he married the love of his life, Sally Ruth Sproull, who survives.

Ken was a U.S. Army veteran, proudly serving in Germany during the Vietnam War.  He was employed as a welder for Challenge Cook Brothers in City of Industry, California.

Ken loved to fish and feed his wildlife animal friends.  His greatest love was his wife.

Surviving besides his loving wife are a son, Richard L. Kelley of Irvine, California; a sister, Rita Popovich of Bethel Park; a niece; and a nephew.

In addition to his parents, Ken was predeceased by three brothers, Raymond, Ralph, and Robert.

In keeping with Ken’s wishes, there will be no funeral services.

Ken’s family has entrusted his care to Kevin J. Dusenbury, funeral director/owner of the Virgil L. Howard Funeral Home, Shinglehouse.

Ken’s family wishes to express their sincere thanks to the Potter County Hospice for their wonderful care.  Memorials in Ken’s name may be made to the Potter County Hospice, Main Street, Coudersport, PA 16915.

To express condolences or share a fond memory of Ken, please visit