Pride shines in efforts to aid 'Sandy' victims


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Local efforts to help victims of Hurricane Sandy, particularly those in New York and New Jersey, continued to build throughout the week.

Today's edition is the fourth straight in which we've detailed one grassroots effort after another to get food, cleaning supplies and other necessities to our East Coast neighbors.

It's not surprising, of course, because this area is known for its generosity, even amid a reputation as the "depressed" coal region. Depressed, perhaps, in terms of economics, but never in heart.

We relish our role as the go-to source for those seeking to publicize their collection efforts. Keep the calls coming at 644-6397, extension 5 for the newsroom; or, remember, you can write to us about all things "Coal Region Community" at living@newsitem.com. The Coal Region Community column is published each Friday, although we'll certainly address more immediate needs as soon as possible.

Readers see the final truckloads produced by many, but it's always inspiring from our end that such tremendous public deeds start with just one idea, one phone call, one person.

While helping in the recovery of Hurricane Sandy is obviously a saintly cause, here's a reminder that six families in Mount Carmel are coping with tragedy as well this week after the devastating fire on East Second Street Wednesday morning. We'll report on any public efforts to help those folks as well.

Time flies

Preparing for election day typically involves a look back to last year. Doing so earlier this week, it seemed impossible that a year had passed since we saw had front-page headlines from the Nov. 9, 2011, edition: "Support 'erodes;' Paterno fighting for his job amid scandal; students rally for JoePa."

Yes, that was one year ago.

Smooth election night

So many potential obstacles were in place that could have derailed our election night operation -a predicted down-to-the-wire presidential race at the top of the list - but we're happy to report a smooth night.

Northumberland County election returns were finalized around 10:15 p.m. Seems the county's army of poll workers and election bureau folks have their system working very efficiently, and we appreciate the timely conclusion to their bustling day.

Touching tribute

Greg Maresca, longtime contributor to The News-Item's op-ed page in the Sunday edition, is a polarizing figure because of his politics. Nonetheless, I would encourage everyone to read his "Talking Points" column tomorrow. And grab a tissue first.

(Heintzelman, editor of The News-Item, writes "The Week In News" for each Saturday edition. E-mail suggestions or comments to andy_h@newsitem.com.)

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