Thursday, October 26, 2000

Tristate A.M. Report

Heavy users strain Type O blood supply

        It's not an emergency yet, but Hoxworth Blood Center is running low on type O blood.

        A handful of patients who needed surprising amounts of blood have temporarily drained supplies. For example, one person used more than 300 units this week after bleeding during an operation — which amounts to an entire day's collection for a blood bank that serves 24 hospitals.

        As a result, Hoxworth is running about 420 units below its desired levels. The blood bank is hoping for strong turnout at already-scheduled blood drives plus more people visiting its neighborhood donation centers, said spokeswoman Amanda Jaehnen. For information on giving blood, call 451-0910.

Postal Service hiring for holidays

        The U.S. Postal Service is taking applications for clerks and mail handlers to work the holiday season.

        Workers are needed at the bulk mail center in Sharonville from Nov. 4 through Dec. 31 and the air mail facility at the Cincinnati/Northern Kentucky International Airport from Dec. 2 through Dec. 31. The pay is $12 an hour with an additional 9 percent for hours worked between 6 p.m. and 6 a.m.

        Applicants must be at least 18 years old or a high school graduate, and pass a drug test and physical.

        Apply in person at the personnel office at the Main Post Office, 1623 Dalton Ave., from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday through Friday, or the Bulk Mail Center, 3055 Crescentville Road in Sharonville, 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. Tuesdays and Thursdays only. Information: 684-5167 or 684-5705.

Passerby pulls man from burning home

        A passerby who pulled a man from his burning Northside home Wednesday evening is being hailed as a hero by firefighters.

        Harry Edwards was walking children to football practice about 6:40 p.m. when he noticed smoke coming from the second floor of a home in the 3700 block of Llewellyn Avenue, District Fire Chief Paul Weber said.

        Mr. Edwards ran inside and was told that 67-year-old Johnnie Means was trapped on the second floor, Chief Weber said.

        Mr. Edwards, 32, of Borden Street in Northside, went back outside and climbed up on the front porch roof. He reached inside a window and pulled Mr. Means from a smoke-filled room onto the roof. Firefighters then arrived and used a ladder to get Mr. Means safely to the ground.

        “The quick thinking of Mr. Edwards unquestionably saved Mr. Means from serious injury or death,” Chief Weber said. “He is commended for his bravery.”

        Mr. Means and his wife, Ethel, were treated for smoke inhalation at the scene. Mrs. Means and another individual were on the first floor when the fire was discovered and were able to escape safely.

        The cause of the fire, which caused an estimated $30,000 damage to the second floor and attic, is under investigation.

Antique fair preview benefits food bank

        HAMILTON — The second annual Hamilton Antique Fair is this weekend at the Butler County Fairgrounds, and a special preview event will benefit the Shared Harvest FoodBank.

        On Saturday, for an early entry fee of $10, collectors may preview and buy items while dealers set up their booths from noon to 6 p.m. Each $10 donation helps pay for $100 worth of food for needy families, said Tina Osso, Shared Harvest's executive director.

        The main show is set for 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. Sunday, with more than 110 dealers expected.

        Information: Bruce Metzger, 738-7256, or www.queencity

Halloween Hike at nature center

        Cincinnati Parks will host a not-so-spooky Halloween Hike this weekend through the magic forest at Caldwell Nature Center, 430 W. North Bend Road.

        The hour hikes begin every 15 minutes from 7 to 8:30 p.m. on Friday and Saturday.

        The event is suited to children 4 to 8 years old. Forest inhabitants — a grumpy old troll, a friendly woods witch, the spirits of the seasons, a bat, a spider, a talking tree and more — will be along the trail to greet hikers. The cost is $2.50 per person. For reservations, call 321-6070.

UC, Miami frats to run for charity

        Phi Gamma Delta fraternities at the University of Cincinnati and Miami University — nicknamed Fijis — are initiating a fund-raiser this week called the Fiji Rivalry Run.

        Members will carry the game ball to UC for the homecoming game on Saturday from the Fiji house in Oxford in a 50-man relay. The fraternities are seeking corporate sponsors and per-mile pledges.

        Their goal is $7,500 for the Ronald McDonald House in Cincinnati.

        Spokesman John A. Fandrich, a philanthropy chairman for the UC chapter, said the next time Miami and UC play, the two houses will have competing relays.

        This year, in the inaugural event, they will cooperate and the “rivalry” will be between their football teams.

City discourages a sloppy tradition

        CHAGRIN FALLS, Ohio — A decades-long tradition of sliding down a pumpkin-covered hill could be coming to an end.

        Each year after Halloween, Chagrin Falls High School students smash and dump pumpkins along Grove Hill and then slide down the slippery hill. Last year more than 2,000 pumpkins were collected, and four people were treated for injuries.

        Now officials in this Cleveland suburb have decided that those who want to slide down the hill will need a permit, which requires a sponsor; proof of liability insurance; and payment of off-duty police officers to provide security. They also will need Village Council's permission to close the street.

Toledo Zoo trying for pregnant elephant

        TOLEDO, Ohio — Keepers at the Toledo Zoo are hoping a 19-year-old African elephant will get pregnant through artificial insemination.

        Researcher Dennis Schmitt this week will make three attempts to artificially inseminate Rafiki. She has a 30 percent chance of getting pregnant each time.

        Rafiki seemed to take the procedure in stride Tuesday. She rarely stopped eating during the hourlong process.

        If it works, a calf would be born in August 2002.

Police identify body without hands, head

        LIMA, Ohio — A mutilated body found in a cornfield without its hands and head has been identified as that of a Texas man, the Allen County Sheriff's Office said Wednesday.

        It took authorities two months to identify the body of Mario Alberto Parra, 45, of Houston, Maj. Larry Van Horn said.

        Investigators think the body was mutilated after the man died, to cover up the crime. There were no other visible injuries.

        They identified his body by tracing screws and rods that were placed in his back during surgery.


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Kentucky News Briefs
- Tristate A.M. Report