June 16, 2013 1:00 AM

Here is a look at the top stories of local interest published in The Indiana Gazette during the week of June 9-15.


A nonstop relay across the country, from Los Angeles to Boston, began June 7 and will come through Blairsville on June 26. More than 1,000 runners, including Blairs-ville resident Errin Miller, are a part of the relay called One Run for Boston, which honors and will raise money for the victims of the Boston Marathon bombings on April 15.

In three weeks, the relay will travel more than 3,000 miles through 14 states. When runners sign up for the race, individually or as a group, they make a contribution to The One Fund Boston. Money raised, according to the website, is being used to help the people most affected by the Boston Marathon bombings.


Authorities reported a Derry Township man was killed over the weekend when he wrecked his motorcycle and was hit by several vehicles on Route 30. Adam Smoker, 30, of Bank Street, was declared dead at the scene, according to the Westmoreland County coroner’s office.

According to Coroner Ken Bacha’s news release, Smoker’s eastbound motorcycle ran onto a grass-covered embankment just west of Hollow Tavern at 2:08 a.m. on June 9. Smoker fell from the cycle near the centerline of the highway, where “multiple passing vehicles” struck him. Smoker wore no helmet, the coroner reported. State police at Greensburg have released no information about the accident.


Tom McConnell was introduced as the 10th women’s basketball coach at Indiana University of Pennsylvania on Tuesday. McConnell, 53, is a 23-year veteran of the coaching ranks and previously worked on men’s and women’s staffs at the Division I level at St. Francis, Wake Forest, Marquette, Colorado, Dayton and Old Dominion. He spent the last two years at Old Dominion as a women’s assistant. McConnell said he views making the move to IUP as a perfect fit and the place he wants to be his last stop of a long career.

About a dozen members of McConnell’s family and several of his friends as well as IUP administrators, coaches and athletes were in attendance at the Kovalchick Convention and Athletic Complex when he was introduced as the head coach. McConnell succeeds Jeff Dow, whose contract was not renewed after last season despite a 108-40 record in five seasons.


A Westmoreland County man accused of hindering officials from reaching a dying woman now faces much more serious charges. State police on Tuesday charged Brandon Crowe, 31, of Arnold, with a second-degree felony count of aiding suicide, accusing him of helping Julie Madeley, 39, to take a lethal dose of an antipsychotic medication, Seroquel, in late March in West Wheatfield Township.

Investigators also charged that Crowe stole Madeley’s property, including jewelry from her body and valuables from her pockets, while her life was slipping away. Prosecutors exchanged the criminal charges Tuesday when Crowe appeared for a scheduled preliminary hearing in the Clymer district court. Judge George Thachik boosted Crowe’s required bond from $50,000 to $75,000 and returned him to Indiana County Jail to await a preliminary hearing on July 2.


The White Township supervisors have authorized a study of the area at Lenz Road and Oakland Avenue by a traffic engineer in anticipation of development and how it could affect traffic safety and congestion. A traffic engineer will review a 2010 traffic study, site plans and maps, and provide four options for the area in the form of conceptual drawings, said Milt Lady, township manager.

Possibilities include new connector roads or the relocation of Lenz Road. The cost of the study is $4,000, Lady said. Results will be available to the supervisors in 30 to 60 days.


Country music artist Craig Campbell will perform a concert at this year’s Indiana County Fair, officials have announced.

The concert is scheduled for 8 p.m. Aug. 26, and admission is $8 and includes parking, fair admission and carnival rides. Passes to the 151st Indiana County Fair will not be valid the day of the concert.

Campbell’s hits include the track “Fish” from his self-titled debut album, which has more than a quarter of a million downloads. “Family Man,” also from his debut album, was a top 15 hit and was featured in HBO’s “True Blood.”

His most recent releases include “Outta My Head” from his sophomore album “Never Regret,” which was released May 7 and has reached No. 27 on country music charts.


Indiana County and its municipalities will receive $679,011 from the state’s Marcellus shale impact fee collected on unconventional natural gas wells last year.

Of that, the county will get $386,709, and the county’s 38 municipalities will get a combined $292,302, according to information released by the office of state Sen. Don White, R-Indiana.

The impact fee is paid to the state by drillers of unconventional natural gas wells.

Through a complex state-derived formula, some of the fee money is retained and used by the state, and some is distributed to counties and on down to municipalities.

The amounts that each municipality will receive range from $96.43 in Smicksburg Borough to $61,407 in Cherryhill Township.

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