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New administrators named at Christ The King, Zaffuto on administrative leave

Several administrative changes have recently taken place at Christ The King Manor in DuBois.

A copy of an internal memo dated June 7, 2019, signed by Chairman of the Board Steve Brazinski and distributed to employees and residents of the nursing home reads, “As you are all likely aware, Sam Zaffuto is on administrative leave. Although change can be stressful and create anxiety, it can also lead to improvement and growth.”

The memo was addressed to “Members of Christ the King family.”

David Thomas has been named interim administrator. He comes to Christ The King with 30 years of management experience in nursing home administration, according to the memo.

On behalf of the board, Brazinski, in the memo, assured members that Christ The King Manor “continues to provide a continuum of care through the healing mission of Jesus Christ, empowering those we serve to live full and dignified lives.”

Brazinski, in the memo, assured members that Christ The King is “financially sound” and the board is committed to ensuring that this continues for many years to come.

Effective Monday, Brazinski said Edward Andrulonis joined the executive management team as Chief Operating Officer.

Andrulonis has more than 29 years of experience in finance, management, sales and customer service.

“We are pleased to have someone of Ed’s caliber and experience join our team,” Brazinski said in the letter. “In this new position, Ed will be responsible for the overall business operations of Christ the King to ensure effective operational and financial procedures are in place.”

According to the letter, Thomas’ “areas of expertise include census building, marketing, regulatory compliance, cost containment, and labor relations. Thomas is an analytical decision maker with excellent problem solving skills. He has been recognized for his ability to develop employers’ professional growth and performance.”

Christ the King Manor, located at 1100 W. Long Ave., DuBois, is a service of Catholic Charities in the Diocese of Erie. Since opening in 1971, Christ the King Manor has grown into a Continuing Care Retirement Community that offers a wide range of services to the elders of the community. This includes skilled nursing care, in-home services, personal care, memory support and specialized Alzheimer’s care and adult day care or independent living.

Contacted by the Courier Express, officials at Christ The King Manor said they have no comment on the changes at this time.

Peril in the Forest
Peril in the Woods- Cook Forest State Park provides a look into history with French and Indian War Encampment

COOKSBURG — Re-enactors representing French, British and Native American forces squared off along the Black Bear Trail for a tactical engagement June 8-9 as part of the Cook Forest State Park French and Indian War Encampment.

Cook Forest State Park Environmental Specialist Dale Luthringer said the event is staged annually and approximately 100-200 re-enactors representing French and British regiments, such as the Maj. Gen. Douglas Alexander Grahahm’s highlander divisions, colonial regiments such as the Ohio Rangers and Native American warriors take part.

Luthringer said the event features two battles each day but the encampment has much to offer in addition to the battles.

“This event is more than just battles. There are many different educational programs that happen on both days. It is a great opportunity to see history outside the history books,” Luthringer said.

Luthringer said no specific battles were recorded in the Cook Forest Area, but the French were present and the park has many Native American trails that would have been used by the tribes who fought in the war.

Re-enactors before the tactical engagement on Sunday spoke of what their characters would be doing before a battle and what stake they had in the war. Randy Rudecki, representing Graham’s 42nd Royal Highlanders, said the British soldiers would be taking stock of their inventory.

“We would be loading our cartridge boxes up, make sure our weapons were all in working order and making sure we have water in our canteens. We would be making sure we were ready to go when we were supposed to be ready to go,” Rudecki said.

Rudecki said the particular engagement for which he was preparing was representative of a skirmish that would have occurred if the opposing factions had met in the forest. Rudecki said the stakes for the British centered on trying to retain their ownership of the land, which brought them into confrontation with the French and the Native Americans.

John Bortniak and Bill Hug, representing the Le Compangie Franche de la Marine de Dumas, said while the French would be making similar preparations to those of the British, it would be hard to predict when this kind of battle would take place.

“Very often they are moving, they are on the march. They would be marching to meet the enemy somewhere on the trail,” Bortniak said.

Bortniak said both sides were fighting over the same territory and wanted control of the trade routes. He said the French had established a lucrative fur trade and were fighting to curtail British efforts to cut in on their trade.

“The British and the French both said each of their colonies reached all the way to the Pacific and each accused the other of intruding on their territory,” Bortniak said,

Jimmy Depace, who represented a woodland Native American, said many tribes were represented in the war, allied both with the British and the French. He said before a battle, they would be making preparations both physical and spiritual.

“Right before a battle they would be gathering their weapons, painting their faces and getting right with the Creator. They would do any spiritual rituals they would want to do, making sure everything was loaded and ready to go. They would also be saying goodbye to loved ones,” Depace said.

He said the tribes were fighting for nothing short of their very lives in the war.

“The natives had their survival at stake. They were fighting for whichever side would help them and respect their lands and way of life after the war was over,” Depace said.

Jyingling / David Maialetti/Philadelphia Daily News/TNS 

The Philadelphia Eagles signed quarterback Carson Wentz to a four-year contract extension on June 6.

Elaine Haskins / Elaine Haskins  

Hula hoop

DuBois Area Middle School seventh-grader Henry Myers does the hula hoop during the obstacle course in physical education class Thursday.

Johnsonburg veteran returns to Normandy for 75th anniversary of D-Day

JOHNSONBURG — A Johnsonburg man sat just to the right of U.S. President Donald Trump as he commemorated the 75th anniversary of D-Day last week.

Joe Scida, 94, is a U.S. Navy veteran who risked his life piloting landing craft into and out of the Omaha Beach area, transporting fellow soldiers during the invasion in 1944, said his son, Tom Scida.

Scida left England for the invasion on LFT 495.

Tom now lives seven doors down from his parents.

Scida met his 93-year-old wife, Kay, in England.

This isn’t Scida’s first trip to Normandy, though. He has returned seven or eight times, Tom said.

This time, Scida was among 16 veterans who traveled to France on the RMS Queen Mary II, Tom said. He travels with The Greatest Generations Foundation international organization based in Denver, Colorado.

TGGF is dedicated to honoring the sacrifices of all veterans who served in World War I, World War II, the Korean War and Vietnam, ensuring their legacies are told, retold and never forgotten, its Facebook page says.

Up until TGGF reached out to his father, Tom says he was reluctant to talk about his war memories. His first trip was around 10 years ago with many U.S. cadets.

“There are guys who get there and simply break down,” Tom said.

Fox 31 Denver newscasters accompanied the veteran, documenting the entire trip, his son added. A 45-minute video of the adventure is to be released soon.

“They kept asking him to go back because he’s a good representative,” Tom said.

Scida was also able to visit the gravesite of a good friend killed that day.

The phone was ringing off of the hook, Tom said, when family and friends saw Scida sitting next to the President on national television that day.

“We are all proud of him,” Tom said. “We are so thankful for what this organization does for veterans. They love them, and it brings peace to their heart.”