Thursday June 6, 2019

Black Forest Broadcast


Phlox on the rocks                                                                                                                       -Gerri Miller


Wednesday’s high, 75; Overnight low, 60; .45” rain







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Obituary: Randi Lawrence, Coudersport

Elk County man jailed on strangulation charge….Cyber thieves steal nearly $400 from Tioga County woman’s accounts…Criminal mischief on Route 44 near Shinglehouse being investigated…..House committee approves Agritourism legislation…..

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A 24 year old Byrnedale man has been arrested for strangulating a 25 year old Byrnedale woman between 9:30 am Sunday and 10:30 am Tuesday. Ridgway based state police allege the suspect, whose name was not released, strangled his ex-girlfriend at their residence on Adam Street in Jay Township to the extent she could no breathe and he also is accused of hitting her several times.  He also reportedly threatened to strangle her to death when she returned home from work on Tuesday. The suspect was committed to the Elk County Jail in lieu of $7500 cash bail after being arraigned before District Judge Jacob.

State police at Mansfield are investigating a cyber theft victimizing a Westfield woman. Someone used Tana Carpenter’s PSECU debit account card, two Walmart cards, a Domino Pizza card, Sunoco card, Miami Velvet and carfax to rack up purchases totaling $389.49 between May 15 and 21.

Both drivers escaped injury in a rear-end collision Tuesday afternoon on Main Street in Richmond Township. Mansfield based state police report the collision occurred when  19 year old Tyler Wetzel of Liberty failed to stop his Toyota Corolla in time and ran into the back of a Chevrolet Silverado driven by Marcus Hull of Towanda.

DUI charges have been filed against Paula Jean Plants who was stopped by a patrol officer on Honeoye Road in Sharon Township this past March 1. Authorities say the lab tests have been received and showed a BAC of .170% nearly twice the legal limit.

A criminal mischief taking place along Route 44 in Sharon Township is being probed by state police at Coudersprt. Someone deliberately made ruts and tore up grass in front of Rizer fire works last Saturday afternoon. Damage is estimated to be $50. Anyone with information is asked to call state police ar 814.274.8690.

Joshua Boden, 21, of Genesee has been cited by state police for trespassing on posted land owned by Thomas Williams of Ulysses last Friday afternoon. The property is located on Smith Hollow Road in Allegany Township.

The House Agriculture Committee this week  unanimously approved legislation authored by Rep. Barb Gleim (R-Cumberland) that would create a statewide standard allowing farmers to host Agritourism or Agritainment activities on their farms.

“Many farmers in Pennsylvania are turning to agritourism to augment their income as they continue to raise traditional crops,” Gleim said. “Agritourism helps farm families generate additional revenue, which in turn helps them remain economically viable and bolster future generations on the farm.”

Farm markets, pick-your-own produce, corn mazes, paintball, petting zoos, hay rides and farm tours are the types of enterprises that fall under what would be called agritourism. They can make the difference between having a positive year on the ledger as opposed to ending up in the red, especially for small family farmers.

“Unfortunately, a fun day at the farm – a corn maze, October hayride or a haunted field – can turn into boon for trial lawyers and cost a family their entire farm,” Gleim said. “Farms are essentially manufacturing businesses – they produce the food our nation lives on and the equipment used can be inherently dangerous.”

Silos, ponds, heavy equipment and farm animals are especially enticing for children to climb or play on. Farms are also tilled, rutted and uneven to walk on – a rolled ankle or other injury can result in a lawsuit.

“My legislation would protect agritourism business from lawsuits where no party is at fault for injuries or damages,” Gleim said. “The legislation would require that farmers post multiple signs warning visitors of the risks, or ask visitors to sign a waiver of liability before participating in activities. While the legislation provides some immunity from litigation, the right to sue is preserved if an owner acts in a grossly negligent manner or operates with no regard for public safety.”

Gleim’s bill is modeled after laws passed in 20 other states, including neighboring in New York and Ohio. As Pennsylvania’s family farmers look to diversify, the General Assembly needs to update laws to help with the promotion and protection of these unique agriculture businesses.

“Before I became a representative, my family hosted the public on our farm throughout the fall with Halloween-themed events and attractions,” Gleim said. I know first-hand the work that farmers put into protecting the public, while creating family-friendly events and activities. I do not believe these efforts should cost a family their entire farm and leave them penniless with no way to any longer earn a living,”


Randi H. Lawrence, 70, of Coudersport, passed away on Tuesday, June 4, 2019.Randi was born on April 11, 1949 in Elmira, NY, the daughter of the late Dorothy (Outman) Murdock and her husband, Jack Murdock, of Knoxville, PA.  Randi shared the last 30 years with her life partner, Laurie Shear. Randi was a graduate of Troupsburg High School, NY and earned her Master’s Degree in Education from Mansfield University. Through her many careers, Randi consistently worked in service of others. A primary education teacher by trade, she also worked as a Montessori teacher both in Pennsylvania and Nebraska. She worked as a counselor, both with the Potter County Office of Aging and for A Way Out, an  abuse and assault service and prevention center, in Coudersport. Much of her life was spent writing, both personally, in dozens of journals, and professionally, as a reporter for multiple newspapers. Randi was also socially and politically active. As young adult she worked at the Boston Women’s Health Collective and was active across the country in the Socialist Workers Party, through which she worked as a coal miner, writer, and typesetter. When her children were young, worked at a food bank in NE and she was instrumental in starting a chapter of the National Organization for Women in Potter County. Randi was always an advocate for the underdog- a lover of children, the elderly, and animals. Her legacy lives on in her children and many others who were fortunate enough to learn from her. Randi was preceded in death by her mother, biological father, John M. Lawrence, and first husband, George Dolph. She is survived by her step-father, Jack Murdock, life partner, Laurie, her second husband, Stephen Wright, two daughters and a son-in-law, Emma Wright and Katie and Andy Meeker of New York, NY, two grandchildren, Miles and Hazel Meeker, two brothers and sisters-in-law, David and Lynne Murdock of Knoxville, PA, and Rick and Lynn Lawrence of Sunset Beach, NC, and several nieces and nephews.A celebration of Randi’s life will be held Sunday, June 9, 2019, from 11am-1pm, at the Hotel Crittenden in Coudersport.Contributions in Randi’s name can be made to A Way Out, 110 East Third Street, Coudersport, PA 16915, or Teacher’s Pet Animal Rescue, 19 Blackberry Lane, Coudersport, PA 16915.

Arrangements entrusted to the Thomas E. Fickinger Funeral Home, Coudersport.