Time was that when kids were planning future careers, they often put "train engineer" near the top of their lists. And there was no better way to get a feel for driving the tracks than to have a model train chugging around the Christmas tree or maybe set up all year long on a platform in the basement or in a spare room.

Those days have passed, of course, replaced by Fortnite and dozens of other video games and electronics that have captured the attention and imagination of players of all ages.



For the second straight year, three generations of Johncours will be expected to lead the Avonworth Antelopes football team as they embark on the 2018 season.

Senior quarterback Derek Johncour will lead the offense on the field with a full year of experience under his belt, while his father Duke Johncour begins his eighth season at the helm. What really makes the situation unique is that Barry Johncour, who coached his son Duke as a quarterback at Churchill several decades ago, has been with the team for some time as an assistant.


The Northgate School Board overwhelmingly agreed Monday not to direct the district’s superintendent to formally contact other school districts to gauge interest in a potential future merger with Northgate.

The decision by the board came after a mixed group of residents stated either that the tax increases projected for at least the next five years are not acceptable, or that they were willing to pay even more for their children’s education.


The legal dispute over a transitional housing program in Bellevue launched into full gear last week with the first of at least two lengthy sessions before the borough’s zoning hearing board.

The issue drew large, angry crowds to Bellevue Council meetings last spring when long-time residents of the townhouses on Laurel Avenue and Gilliland Place began receiving notices that their leases would not be renewed because all 46 units had become part of a master lease held by the Zero Six Eight corporation, which planned to rent them for transitional housing.



The Northgate Flames begin the 2018 season on Saturday when they host the Commodores from Perry High School.


James M. Aubelle James M. Aubelle, 66, of Emsworth, formerly of Swissvale, died Friday, August 17, 2019, after a nearly five year battle with cancer. He was the son of Mary Louise Aubele and the late Regis Aubele; brother of Regis, Edward (Patty), Michael (Joyce), Paul (Sherry), Mark (Gloria), Daniel (Terri), and the late Keith. Also many loving nieces, nephews, and great-nieces and great-nephews. Arrangements by the Thomas L. Nied Funeral Home, Inc.

Dorothy C. Vancheri Dorothy C. Vancheri, 91, of Avalon, died Saturday, August 18, 2018.


Editor -

Shame on them. That’s really the only thing that goes through my mind when I think about the Northgate School Board after Monday night’s discussion regarding the coming financial insolvency of the district. Shame on them!


“It’s a life-changing thing,” Lanae Lumsden told Avalon officials at Tuesday’s regular council meeting.

Lumsden and her family, including young children, live mere feet from the Jackman Inn in Avalon, where, on July 7, a local black man was attacked by a group of self-professed skinheads who pledged to “eradicate” the world of people of color.

“I need to know that my community takes these incidents seriously,” Lumsden said.


During a traffic stop on July 27, Avalon Police officers arrested David Roose, 46, of Renfrew and John Roose, 45, of Avalon, charging both with possession of suspected heroin.

Following a traffic stop on July 28, Murphy David East, 32, of Avalon, was charged with driving under the influence of alcohol.

On Aug. 1, a McKinley Terrace resident reported that someone had broken the front window of her home. Police say that no entry was made and nothing was stolen.


A number of personnel matters were approved by the Avonworth School Board at their Thursday, July 26, meeting.

Tommie Murray was hired as the assistant elementary school principal commencing Aug. 1, pending release from her current district, at a salary of $75,000 with benefits.

Ashley Randall was hired as a temporary professional employee with an assignment as a first grade teacher. Kathy Reichart was named Randall’s mentor for the school year.

Meghan Kelly was hired as a professional employee with an assignment as a second grade teacher commencing Aug. 17.


Bellevue Police received a report of an attempted burglary on North Balph Avenue on July 3.

An assault on Lincoln Avenue was reported on July 4.

On July 5, A bicycle was reported taken from a Division Avenue residence on June 4-5.

A Lincoln Avenue retail store reported shoplifting on July 7.

A resident of Teece Avenue reported larceny on July 7. A resident of Woods Avenue reported larceny on July 10.

A Lincoln Avenue retail store reported shoplifting on July 10. On July 14, a Lincoln Avenue retail store reported larceny.


With criminal charges still pending against six people associated with a “White Nationalist” hate group for the assault of a local black man in an Avalon bar last month, two events have been scheduled to express the community’s intolerance of racism and hate crimes, and to question the way the case was handled by Avalon Police.


Virginia Ruth (Butler) Miranda Virginia “Ginny” Ruth (Butler) Miranda, 83, of Bellevue, went home to be with Jesus and her beloved husband, Jim, on Tuesday, August 7, 2018. Ginny was the only child of the late James and Sophie Butler. She was preceded in death by her husband, James who passed away in 2017. She had a long and impressive career as a top-notch secretary working for a senator, a district attorney, an airline executive and retired as a public servant for Allegheny County. Ginny and Jim were active in several churches throughout the years.


A Dalzell Avenue in Ben Avon resident reported a disturbance on Aug. 1.

A Spruce Street in Ben Avon resident reported a disturbance on Aug. 3.

On Aug. 4, a Cypress Knoll Drive in Ohio Township resident reported disorderly conduct.

A Louise Drive in Ohio Township resident reported a civil dispute on Aug. 4.

An Overlook Drive in Ohio Township resident reported a disturbance on Aug. 4.

On Aug. 6, an Overlook Drive in Ohio Township resident reported a civil dispute.

A Louise Drive in Ohio Township resident reported a civil dispute on Aug. 7.


Luis Vargas, 31, of Cranberry Township, was arrested on July 8 for driving under the influence of alcohol.

After Avalon Police were dispatched to a thrift store on Ohio River Boulevard on July 9 for a two-vehicle accident without injuries, Cynthia Ann Milligan, 60, of Crescent, was arrested for being intoxicated.

On July 14, a hit and run accident occurred in the parking lot of an Ohio River Boulevard restaurant.

On July 14, a resident of Ohio River Boulevard in Avalon reported criminal mischief. The ignition of her vehicle had been tampered with and broken.


A fairly mundane e-mail debate among Bellevue Council members about whether the borough should spend $2,000 to access an app that would send notifications to borough residents quickly turned into personal attacks and the revelation of behavior that some officials might hope had remained behind the “closed doors” of social media.


Richard A. Barnhart Richard A. Barnhart, 82, of Bellevue, died Sunday, July 22, 2018. He was the husband of Charlotte (Schlarp) Barnhart; father of Karen (Daniel) Saunders, Donna (Nathan) Weinstein, Joanne (Stephen) Wanat and Elaine Saunders; brother of Elizabeth Outly, John (Sandra) Hart, and the late Raymond (surviving wife, Margaret) Barnhart and Marian Fitz; also survived by 13 grandchildren and three great-grandchildren, numerous nieces and nephews. Memorial donations are suggested to Good Samaritan Hospice. Arrangements by the Lawrence T. Miller Funeral Home, Inc.


A resident of Westchester Drive in Ohio Township reported a disturbance on July 20.

A resident of Laurel Avenue in Ben Avon reported criminal mischief to an automobile on July 20.

On July 21, a resident of Kensington Drive in Ohio Township reported harassment by communication.

On July 21, a resident of Bryson Avenue in Emsworth reported a disturbance.

Ohio Township Police officers responded to a disturbance at a Bryson Avenue in Emsworth residence on July 22.

A resident of Bear Run Drive in Ohio Township reported disorderly conduct and disturbing the peace on July 22.


Criminal charges were filed Wednesday against six people from across the state accused of the racially-motivated assault of a local black man in an Avalon bar on July 7.


Avalon Police Chief Tom Kokoski said Monday that six people will be charged with multiple offenses following what has been called the racially-motivated attack of an African American man in a local bar a week ago Saturday.


Several motions concerning personnel were approved by the Avonworth School Board during the July meeting. Approved were:

The transfer of five sick days for Brittany Rene Mills, speech and language teacher, which were accumulated during her employment with the Fox Chapel Area School District.

The letter of resignation from Elaine Tierney, high school learning support teacher, retroactive to June 25.

Tessa Babcock as a fourth grade teacher, commencing Aug. 17.

Sara Knable as a half-time elementary art teacher, commencing Aug. 17.


North Hills Community Outreach (NHCO) is partnering with first responders, the American Red Cross and the local municipalities in northern Allegheny County north of the City of Pittsburgh to ensure that families affected by recent flooding receive compassionate, effective assistance.


Northwest Bank will celebrate the five-week grand opening of its newly-opened region headquarters and renovated office located at 532 Lincoln Bellevue from Friday, July 13 through Friday, August 17.

The new office boasts a modern, open-concept layout, private office space, two drive-through lanes and a drive-through deposit ATM that allows customers to make cash and check deposits 24 hours a day, seven days a week. In addition to the renovated office, the newly-opened region headquarters shares the same location.


Elizabeth H. Nickeson Elizabeth H. Nickeson, 99 of Bellevue, died Friday, July 6, 2018. She was the wife of the late William F. Nickeson; and is survived by her son, Robert G. Nickeson of Natrona Heights. Elizabeth was a great lover of birds and poetry, and she showed kindness to all. She enjoyed volunteering for many organizations and community events. During her working years, she was employed as a medical transcriptionist at the former Central Medical Pavilion. Arrangements by the Orion C. Pinkerton Funeral Home, Inc.

Shirley M. Veneziale