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Issue Home August 18, 2007 Site Home

100 Years Ago
From the Desk of the D.A.
The Healthy Geezer
Straight From Starrucca
Veterans’ Corner

100 Years Ago

GREAT BEND: A diamond rattlesnake, revealed in a bundle of oats, was killed in Great Bend township, nearly 6 feet long and sporting 17 rattles. AND: F. T. Kyling is recovering from the injuries he received a few days ago by being hit by an engine while driving his bakery wagon across a D.L. & W. crossing.

SPRINGVILLE: D. D. Layton has the woodwork of his house nearly finished, and Painter Culver has begun the artistic work. It will be a very fine residence when finished. Steam heat will be installed later. AND: A. L. Greatsinger is putting up a slaughterhouse just below town.

HOPBOTTOM: Quite a good deal of excitement was created here on Thursday last, when the Stone House was discovered to be on fire in the roof, supposed to have caught from sparks from passing trains. It was soon extinguished, however. It was very fortunate, indeed, that it did not happen in the night.

BROOKLYN: The Southworth recital on Tuesday evening, in the Universalist church, was well attended and a grand success. Dr. Bond favored the audience with five fine selections and Mr. Southworth’s playing was well received. His rendition of Beethoven’s “Moonlight Sonata” was something to be remembered, also the selection “Recollections of Home,” was a favorite with the audience.

MIDDLETOWN: The Oregon Indian Medicine Company held a series of plays on the fields in the vicinity of Middletown Center, lasting four nights and, as it was very entertaining, attracted large crowds, which gathered every evening. The principal features were the contests. The nail driving contest participated in by four ladies was won by Mrs. D. Jories. “The most popular lady” contest, for which a silver ice pitcher was the premium, was won by Miss L. Golden. Mrs. D. Murphy, who was next in favor, fell short by a number of votes, but the winner in this instance was really the loser, to the tune of some $20. The dance held in the hall after the play Monday night was enjoyed by the crowd. Good music was in attendance and a good supper left nothing to be wished for and all went home feeling satisfied.

BURNWOOD, Ararat Twp.: There are very encouraging prospects for a new and big industry here. Scranton capitalists are engaged in testing the clay in the swamp bed. This extends over many acres and men are sinking drills at three different points. They have already ascertained that the clay extends down for a distance of over ten feet. It is thought to be admirably adapted to the manufacture of brick, tile and pottery and a big factory may spring up here, which will give the place a boom.

BRANDT: The work of replacing the interlocking plant of the Erie and Delaware and Hudson companies, at Jefferson Junction, which was torn out in the recent derailment, will be begun shortly. Mr. Van Houten, division engineer, is authority for the statement that when it is completed it will be more up-to-date, and better than the old one. Some 75 trains pass over this plant daily. C. D. Burton, the publisher of Lanesboro, has secured some very good views of the wreck, which occurred at the Junction, and the same are selling rapidly. Mr. Burton certainly turns out some very good pictures.

PLEASANT VALLEY, Auburn Twp.: During the severe electric storm that passed over this section Saturday evening, the large barn of Sam and Harry Reimel was struck by lightning and burned to the ground with all its contents, including one horse, which was killed by the bolt; another horse was knocked down but through the heroic efforts was dragged out while yet unable to stand, by Sam, who was in the barn milking at the time. He succeeded in getting all the cows out and saving a hack wagon and grind stone, but that was all. The small barn adjoining was also burned, which contained a new reaper and many new farming tools, which could not be saved. While B. B. Smith owned the farm two barns were burned. Just three years ago the last one burned. One year ago last spring the Reimel brothers purchased the farm and erected this fine barn, which had not been completed a year. It was a wooden structure and there was a small insurance. Harry was not at home at the time of the fire.

FOREST CITY: Base ball fans will be pleased to learn of the organization of a nine that includes all the home players who were in the organizations of the season of 1904 and 05. Ed Lewis is captain of the reorganized team. The first game arranged for will be played Saturday at Taylor and our opponents will be that exceptionally strong amateur team, the Taylor Reds, who, it is said, have been beaten but once this season. Forest City’s line up will be as follows: pitcher, John Miskell; catcher, Fred Wolfert; short stop, William Miskell, 1st base, Edmund Lewis, 2nd base, William Hughes; 3rd base, James Egan; left field, Michael Troy, center field, Patrick Kelleher; right field, Fred Gunning, substitute, Joe Kaffo.

MONTROSE: The following is reprinted from a Montrose newspaper of 12/10/1857: On Wednesday, Dec. 2, 1857, there took place one of the most extraordinary races ever known in this county. Dr. R.Thayer, Jr., had bet with Wm. M. Post, Esq., a gold watch against Post’s horse, that he (Thayer) could go from Montrose to Brooklyn and back on foot, quicker than Post could drive his horse the same distance, with another man in his buggy. The trail of speed accordingly was commenced Wednesday morning, the very muddy state of the road favoring the Doctor. They started out by the Methodist Church and Thayer, throwing off his shawl, coat and vest, clapped his hands together and started down the hill, full speed, with W. M. Post and D. D. Hinds after him in the buggy. Thayer kept ahead up the hill by the “Dunn Place,” and when the buggy reached the top of the hill he was out of sight. Here Hinds put on the whip, and they overtook the Doctor and passed him at Col. Watrous’s, three miles from Montrose. They described the Dr. as puffing and blowing almost as hard as their sorrel, who by the way had the heaves. In passing they bade the Dr. good morning, and Hinds told him they would go on to Brooklyn and have dinner ready by the time he would get there. But in going up “Newton Hill,” which is both long and steep, the Dr. got ahead again, and then as his competitors state, called to his brother--who in company with Tarbell, of the Franklin Hotel, was following in another buggy, to bring up his horse. Here Tarbell alighted and the other put whip to his horse, passed Post and Hinds, and came up with the Dr., who by taking hold of the hind end of the buggy, led up the hill in fine style. Post alleged that this was a violation of the terms of the race and referred it to Tarbell, but Tarbell declined to give an opinion and here turned back to Montrose. On reaching the top of the hill, Post and Hinds saw the Dr. far ahead, still as they thought in suspicious proximity to his brother’s buggy. (Continued next week.)

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From the Desk of the D.A.
By District Attorney Jason J. Legg

On October 15, 2004, Kenneth Sodomsky went to a Circuit City in Berks County in order to get an optical drive and DVD burner installed into his computer. As part of its standard practice, Circuit City required Sodomsky to execute an authorization form that empowered Circuit City employees to perform the work on his computer. Circuit City explained the installment process to Sodomsky, including informing him that the installer would have to make sure that the programs operated properly. Sodomsky, a 72-year old man, was apparently in a hurry to get these items on his computer, and requested that the work be expedited. The manager told Sodomsky to return in one hour and the computer would be ready.

Stephen Richert, the Circuit City computer repair specialist, installed the DVD and certain software necessary to run the DVD. Thereafter, Richert performed a general search for video in the computer in order to check to see if the DVD software was operating properly. This required the technician to run through various video files on Sodomsky’s computer to make certain that the DVD installation was operating properly for all video formats. Apparently, once initiated, the computer does the video search on its own without any human intervention, and the technician simply watched as various videos were quickly run through the new DVD component. During the course of this routine procedure, Richert observed a video depicting pornography, and, based upon the title of the file, it appeared to involve children.

In the past, the State Police had informed Richert that if he ever encountered child pornography while he was working on computers he should immediately call the police. After viewing the pornography coupled with his prior instructions from the State Police, Richert immediately stopped what he was doing and called the police. The police responded and Richert played the same video clip that he had watched prior to stopping the installation process. About the same time, Sodomsky had returned to the store to pick up his computer and found the police waiting for him. Sodomsky was told that his computer had been seized by the police as it contained suspected child pornography, and Sodomsky replied that he knew what they had found and that his “life was over.” The police then obtained a search warrant to run through all the video files on the computer, and they located child pornography. Sodomsky was charged with a felony relating to the possession of child pornography.

Sodomsky then sought to suppress the evidence and contended that the search of his computer by the Circuit City employee was unlawful. The trial court agreed, concluding that Sodomsky had not given Circuit City permission to rummage through his computer during the installation process, and that he had a reasonable expectation to privacy in his computer files that was violated by the employee search. The trial court suppressed the evidence, and the Commonwealth filed an appeal to the Pennsylvania Superior Court.

In considering the case, the Pennsylvania Superior Court had to determine whether Sodomsky retained a reasonable expectation of privacy in the contents of his computer when he dropped it off with a stranger for the installation process. In making this determination, the Superior Court noted that Sodomsky had given Circuit City permission to perform various activities related to the installation process and knew that the DVD drive would be tested by the Circuit City employee. Sodomsky never questioned Circuit City as to how this testing would occur, nor did he instruct Circuit City that he did not want any of his files viewed in any manner. In finding that Sodomsky had no reasonable expectation of privacy in his computer files, the Superior Court noted: “Sodomsky knowingly exposed to the public, the Circuit City employees, the contents of his video files. It is clear that the Circuit City employees were members of the public; hence, if Sodomsky knowingly exposed the contents of his video files to them, as members of the public, he no longer retained an expectation of privacy in those videos nor could he expect that they would not be distributed to other people, including the police.” As a result the trial court’s suppression order was reversed, and the Commonwealth now has the evidence necessary to proceed with its prosecution.

Please submit any questions, concerns, or comments to Susquehanna County District Attorney’s Office, P.O. Box 218, Montrose, Pennsylvania 18801 or at

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The Healthy Geezer
By Fred Cicetti

Q. My mother had varicose veins in her legs and now I’m getting them. She put up with them. I don’t want to. So how do I get rid of them?

Varicose veins are twisted and enlarged veins that bulge in legs, but they can appear in other places. Varicose veins are more common in legs because veins from the groin to the ankles endure the most pressure of any veins in the body.

Varicose veins affect half of people over the age 50. Women get varicose veins more often than men.

Spider veins, which are named for the spider webs they resemble, are like varicose veins, but they’re smaller. Hemorrhoids are anal varicose veins.

Aging is a major cause of varicose veins. As we get older, our veins stretch and the valves in them weaken. These valves keep the blood flowing toward the heart. If the valves malfunction, blood backs up in the veins and engorges them.

Varicose veins are blue because the blood in them needs oxygen, which it gets when it returns to the heart and is pumped through the lungs.

These bulging veins can be painful, but, for many, they are just ugly nuisances. There are many options available to treat them. The first step in dealing with varicose veins is to get them examined by your doctor and get personal advice about how to deal with your condition.

Before trying a variety of procedures, you can wear compression stockings that squeeze the legs and help the veins move blood. They are available at most pharmacies. If these don’t work, your doctor may recommend one of the following:

Lasers can make varicose and spider veins vanish.

Injections can close the veins and make them fade away. This is called “sclerotherapy.”

Heat is used to destroy varicose veins. A catheter is inserted in a large varicose vein. The tip of the catheter is heated and then withdrawn.

Catheters can also be used with radiofrequency or lasers to close veins.

The veins can be removed with incisions. This is called “vein stripping.”

Small varicose veins can be taken out with little punctures of the skin. Surgical hooks remove the veins. This is called “ambulatory phlebectomy.”

In advanced cases of varicose veins, “endoscopic vein surgery” may be used. In this procedure, the surgeon inserts a tiny video camera to help in the removal of the veins with incisions.

Varicose veins can’t be prevented, but there are steps you can take to reduce the chances of getting them. Here are some pointers:

Walking improves the circulation in your legs.

Losing weight reduces pressure on veins.

Low-heel shoes and flats exercise your calves.

Tight clothes restrict circulation.

Lying with your legs up improves circulation.

Sitting, especially with crossed legs, or standing for a long time cuts down on circulation.

Eating foods low in salt and high in fiber is beneficial. Salt leads to water retention and swelling. Not consuming enough fiber leads to constipation, which can contribute to varicose veins.

If you have a question, please write to

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Straight From Starrucca
By Danielle Williams

No Straight From Starrucca This Week

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Veterans’ Corner

This is the second of two columns dedicated to the Miner family.

Spc. 5 John D. Miner

John was a graduate of Tunkhannock High School, Class of 1961.

He enlisted in the U.S. Army on August 20, 1963, to August 19, 1966.

He completed basic training at the U.S. Army Infantry Training School at Fort Jackson, South Carolina.

On May 28, 1964 he completed a fifteen-week Manual Central Office Repair Course at the U.S. Army Southeastern Signal School at Fort Gordon, Georgia, where he received an “Honor Graduate” certificate for attaining the highest academic average in his class.

After completing Signal Corps training, he was assigned to the 206th Signal Company LB Fort Gordon, Georgia. In November, 1964 the company moved to Fort Bragg, North Carolina.

John served eleven months in Santo Domingo, Dominican Republic, from September, 1965 to August, 1966. Assigned to the 5th Logistical Command under 82nd Airborne located in Fort Bragg, NC, as Chief Maintenance man of a nine position switchboard.

He received his PFC rank (E3) in January, 1964; Spc. 4 rank (E4) March, 1965; Spc. 5 rank (E5) December, 1965.

He received the Armed Forces Expeditionary Medal and the National Defense Service medal.

John is the son of Elizabeth and the late William H. Miner of Tunkhannock.

Spc. 4 Edward D. Miner

Edward was a graduate of Boonton High School in New Jersey, Class of 1978. He enlisted in the U.S. Army in September of 1979, to September of 1982.

He completed his basic training at Fort Dix, NJ. He completed Mechanic School at Fort Ord, California. He spent fourteen months in Bamberg, Germany.

He received the Good Conduct Medal.

Edward is the son of Lula and Edward H. Miner of Friendsville, PA, and the grandson of Elizabeth and the late William H. Miner of Tunkhannock.

Spc. 4 William S. Miner, Jr.

William was a graduate of Tunkhannock High School, Class of 1982. He enlisted in the U.S. Army on July 21, 1982, to March 15, 1985. He completed basic training and Military Police training at Fort McClellan, Alabama. His first permanent station was Fort Meade, Maryland. From March, 1984 to March, 1985 he was stationed in Seoul, Korea with the Military Police 501st Battalion.

He received the Good Conduct Medal.

William is the son of Sandy and William S. Miner, Sr. of Mehoopany, and the grandson of Elizabeth and the late William H. Miner, Tunkhannock.

Lt. Col. Patrick S. Miner

Lt. Col. Patrick S. Miner is stationed in Okinawa, Japan with the 1st Battalion, 1st Special Forces Group (A) Airborne.

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