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Patriots, New York Giants have a date in Super Bowl XLVI. SPORTS 1B

The Times Leader



J OE PAT E R N O : 19 2 6 - 2 012




Joe Paterno, who was at Penn State as either football head coach or assistant football coach for 61 years, died at 9:25 a.m. Sunday at 85.

Cancer takes legendary Penn State coach By DEREK LEVARSE


e had once been asked about the perfect ending. For Joe Paterno, life and football were often the same thing. “I think the perfect ending is, you drop dead at the end of the game after you kick the winning field goal,” Paterno joked in 2007 as he prepared for induction into the College Football Hall of Fame. “And they carry you off the field, and everybody’s singing, ‘So long, Joe! You’ve been wonderful!’ ” A perfect ending, by any definition, vanished in Novem-

ber. While uncertainty hangs over his legacy, support has not abandoned the Penn State coach, who died at 9:25 a.m. Sunday from lung cancer at age 85. “It is with great sadness that we announce that Joe Paterno passed away earlier today. His loss leaves a void in our lives that will never be filled,” his family announced. “He died as he lived. He fought hard until the end, stayed positive, thought only of others and constantly reminded See PATERNO, Page 10A

MORE/INSIDE A SCHOOL MOURNS: Students gather in State College and at Penn State Wilkes-Barre to remember Joe Paterno. Page 5A SPORTS WORLD REACTS:

Sports figures and former Penn Staters, both locally and nationally, react. Pages 1B, 2B IN HIS OWN WORDS: Former PSU writer Jerry Kellar sat

down with Paterno in 1998. Read the interview. Page 4B QUOTABLE: Sports, political leaders comment on JoePa. Pages 10A, 2B

ONLINE: A look at the life of Joe Paterno in a photo slideshow.


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IN THEIR WORDS “He died as he lived. He fought hard until the end, stayed positive, thought only of others and constantly reminded everyone of how blessed his life had been. His ambitions were farreaching, but he never believed he had to leave this Happy Valley to achieve them. He was a man devoted to his family, his university, his players and his community.” — Paterno family. “His legacy as the winningest coach in major college football and his generosity to Penn State as an institution and to his players, stand as monuments to his life. As both man and coach, Joe Paterno confronted adversities, both past and present, with Corbett grace and forbearance. His place in our state’s history is secure.” —

Pennsylvania Gov. Tom Corbett.

former Penn State running back Mike Guman.

“Whenever you recruited or played against Joe, you knew how he operated and that he always stood for the right things. Of course, his longevity over time and his impact on college football is remarkable. Anybody who knew Joe feels badly about the circumstances. I suspect the emotional turmoil of the last few weeks might have played into it.” — Nebraska

athletic director and former coach Tom Osborne.

“Few people are responsible for building something that will last forever. ... Coach Paterno was first and foremost an educator, whose immeasurable contributions to Penn State, the coaching profession and the entirety of college sports, will be felt Krzyzewski permanently. That is the legacy of a great leader.” — Duke basketball

coach Mike Krzyzewski.

“We came to Penn State as young kids and when we left there we were men, and the reason for that was Joe Paterno.” — Lydell Mitchell, a star

running back at Penn State from 1968 to 1972.

“It’s just sad because I think he died from other things than lung cancer. I don’t think that the Penn State that he helped us to become and all the principles and values and things that he taught were carried out in the handling of his situation.” —

Mickey Shuler, a Penn State tight end from 1975 to 1977.

“His influence on me personally was a lot more far-reaching than the playing field. ... Coach Paterno should be remembered and revered for his 61 years of service to the Penn State community, the many games and championships he won, and the positive influence he was.” —

Ex-PSU linebacker Paul Posluszny

“I’ve coached around 300 college games and only once when I’ve met the other coach at midfield prior to the game have I asked a photographer to take a picture of me with the other coach. That happened Spurrier in the Citrus Bowl after the ’97 season when we were playing Penn State.” —

South Carolina coach Steve Spurrier.

“We came to football games just to see Joe Paterno on the sideline when we were students. He was the reason we attended so much.” — Jamie

Bloom, Penn State class of ’92.

PATERNO Continued from Page 1A

everyone of how blessed his life had been. His ambitions were far reaching, but he never believed he had to leave this Happy Valley to achieve them. He was a man devoted to his family, his university, his players and his community.” Paterno leaves behind five children, 17 grandchildren and thousands of former players who viewed him as family. “We will always be teammates,” Paterno told his squad in his final meeting with them in November. His life has ended, but Paterno’s final chapter remains largely unknown. His six decades of service to Penn State as a football coach, an educator and a philanthropist stand against a stunning end in the wake of sexual abuse charges against his former top assistant. The truth is that the full story is known only to a small few, and many were still waiting to hear more of Paterno’s side. More, at least, than the brief few comments he made last week to The Washington Post, saying he wasn’t entirely sure how to handle the situation. Given that, just 74 days after he was fired by Penn State, opinion on Paterno remains divided. As he did throughout his Hall of Fame coaching career, Paterno received tremendous support from his former players and the Penn State football family. “We’re the men we are today because of Joe Paterno – all of us,” said Devon Still, the 79th and final first-team All-American to play for Paterno. “Penn State is one of college football’s iconic programs because it was led by an icon in the coaching profession in Joe Paterno,” said Bill O’Brien, the man tasked with replacing Paterno. “There are no words to express my respect for him as a man and as a coach. To be following in his footsteps at Penn State is an honor.” Paterno arrived in State College in 1950 after graduating from Brown University, cajoled by his college coach, Rip Engle, to join him as an assistant with the Nittany Lions. In 1966, Paterno took over for Engle and helped transform the university into a household name on and off the field, winning national championships in 1982 and 1986 and finishing his career with a Division I record 409 victories. For the time being, however, the Penn State name is still associated with a horrific child abuse scandal. That cloud also lingers over Paterno as the school’s most famous representative. He was never charged with a crime in an investigation that brought 52 counts of abuse of children against Jerry Sandusky and allegations of a cover-up by top university officials. Paterno did not fare as well in the court of public opinion, beginning with the state police commissioner. Frank Noonan stated his belief in November


‘We will always be teammates,’ Paterno, pictured in this Dec. 2007 photo, told his squad in his final meeting with them in November.


Paterno’s teams captured national championships in 1982 and 1986. Here, he leads his team into battle in Sept. 1998.


Coach Paterno led the Nittany Lions to a record of 51-13 from the 2005 to 2009 seasons. He is pictured during a press conference in before the Blue-White Game in 2008.

that Paterno and others had “a moral obligation” to call police about an alleged sexual assault committed by Sandusky in 2002. That was the beginning of a circus-like atmosphere that engulfed Paterno and State College, leading to the coach announcing his retirement on Nov. 9, effective at the end of the season. “It is one of the great sorrows of my life,” Paterno said in a statement that morning. “With the benefit of hindsight, I wish I had done more.” Twelve hours later, he was fired by the school’s board of trustees. Paterno was prevented from speaking at his normal press conference the day before and little of his side of the story is known. Most dominant is a summary of a grand jury investigation that says Paterno was told of the alleged 2002 incident by an eyewitness, then-graduate assistant Mike McQueary. Paterno, who had said he was never told specific details about what exactly McQueary saw, took the matter to athletic director Tim Curley and senior vice president Gary Schultz, who oversaw the university’s police department. Both men have since pleaded not guilty to counts of perjury and failure to report abuse of minors. In his last public comments, made last week to The Washington Post, Paterno said he was hes-

itant to follow up on his meeting with Curley and Schultz because he was worried it would be seen as exerting his influence. “I didn’t know which way to go,” Paterno said. “And rather than get in there and make a mistake ...” Paterno finished the interview the morning of Jan. 13. Later that day, he was admitted to the hospital for the final time. His cancer diagnosis had been revealed by the family on Nov. 18 and he returned to the hospital in December after breaking his pelvis in a fall at his home. The visits for medical care had been increasing in recent years, because as the wins kept piling up for Paterno in the following years, so did the ailments. From 2005-09, Penn State went 51-13, putting the Lions in the top 10 in the country during that stretch. But Paterno wasn’t on the sideline for a handful of those victories. A sideline collision at Wisconsin in 2006 broke his left leg and damaged ligaments in his knee, briefly forcing him into a wheelchair. In 2008, he managed to break his right hip at an early-season practice while demonstrating, of all things, an onside kick. Despite becoming increasingly hobbled each week, eventually conceding his spot on the sideline to rest up in the coaches booth, he refused the inevitable surgery until after the regular season. He followed a similar pattern in

2011 after injuring his other hip in preseason practice when he was blindsided by a receiver trying to track down a pass. Though he tried to work his way back down on to the sideline, he would last for just a few quarters before adjourning upstairs. Before his cancer diagnosis, he battled colds and coughs and even a flu that forced him off the field during the middle of a game. He had Lasik surgery performed on his long-afflicted eyesight. By the summer of 2010, a gaunt Paterno appeared at Big Ten media days in Chicago after having to cancel alumni fundraising appearances because of digestive problems. He was promptly asked if he was going to coach until the day he died. Well? “People ask me why I’ve stayed here so long,” a healthier Paterno bellowed three months later to a still-packed Beaver Stadium crowd that was hanging around to celebrate his 400th career win. “And you know what? Look around. Look around.

“I stayed here because I love you all!” The message was as much for his players, who had carried him off the sideline on their shoulders one final time that October evening. It was for a loyal group of assistant coaches who had stuck with him through four out of five losing seasons from 2000-04. When school administrators sat down with him after that 2004 season to gauge his willingness to retire, Paterno responded that he need only be able to keep his staff together, and the wins would follow. As it turned out, he was right. Paterno was especially proud of his 2005 squad that put Penn State back in the national spotlight with an 11-1 record, a Big Ten title and a triple-overtime win in the Orange Bowl. That team featured the same coaching staff as the previous season and a group of dynamic freshmen giving an extra spark to some talented seniors. It was one of those seniors, Tamba Hali, who popped into Paterno’s head while telling stories before that 2007 Hall of Fame induction. A meeting with Hali from two months earlier was still fresh in his mind. Hali had walked into Paterno’s Lasch Building office, prompting a smile and a playful jab from his old coach. “What the devil are you doing here?” Paterno asked. Hali, a first-round draft pick of the Kansas City Chiefs, replied simply that it was his team’s bye week. “Whaddya want?” Paterno joked. “Every time I see you, you want something.” “I don’t want anything,” Hali answered. “I just want to tell you I miss you.” Paterno finished the story, pausing to compose himself. “Now,” he said finally. “Does that mean something?” His voice cracked. He drifted off.







“You could have become a good football player at many places but you wouldn’t have become the man you are if you didn’t go to Penn State.” —


After Penn State had four losing seasons in five years from 2000-2004, school administrators sat down with Joe Paterno to gauge his willingness to retire. Paterno said he could still win and in 2005 the Lions went 11-1. Here, Joe Paterno is seen running onto the field at the Orange Bowl on Jan. 3, 2006 after that season.

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DECISION 2012: Six pages of election coverage, INSIDE THE TIMES LEADER

The Times Leader




17th Congressional District Cartwright 140,634 Cummings 86,252

11th Congressional District Barletta 162,073








Stilp 115,495

116th Legislative District Toohil 14,603 Young 7,130

120th Legislative District Mundy 14,051 Kaufer 11,002

118th Legislative District Carroll 16,031 O’Connor 8,384

119th Legislative District Mullery 12,352 Arnold 7,963 AP PHOTO

Arizona Democrats celebrate as President Barack Obama is declared the winner of the presidential race at a Democratic Party gathering Tuesday, in Tucson, Ariz. Challenger Mitt Romney conceded in a speech before supporters in Boston and urged an end to bickering.

MORE INSIDE Attorney Matt Cartwright wins seat to represent the 17th Congressional District, Page 3A Incumbent Lou Barletta sends the pink pig packing, defeating Gene Stilp’s challenge for the 11th Congressional District, Page 3A Pictures from an old pizza party didn’t ruin Tarah Toohil’s night. The incumbent holds on for a second term as State Rep for the 116th legislative district, Page 3A Gerry Mullery captures a second term representing the 119th Legislative District, Page 4A Referendum questions successful in Kingston Township and Pittston, defeated in Butler Township, Page 4A Kane wins state attorney general race, Page 6A Democrats strengthen hold on the U.S. Senate, gaining seats in Indiana and Massachusetts, Page 7A GOP poised to retain control of U.S. House, despite trade-off of seats around the country. The net result is control. Page 7A Turnout high in many parts of U.S., including states impacted by Superstorm Sandy, Page 7A


Obama defeats Romney to win 2nd term as president By DAVID ESPO AP Special Correspondent

cede. He spoke in Boston to a crowd of supporters, saying the nation was at a critical point and urging Americans not to engage in partisan bickering. “I pray that the president will be successful in guiding our nation,” he said. But, after the costliest — and arguably the nastiest — campaign in history, divided government seemed alive and well. Democrats retained control of

Electoral votes Obama


270 needed to win



Romney’s pitch didn’t connect A N A LY S I S

Presidential race by states won Obama


WASHINGTON — President Barack Obama rolled to re-election Tuesday night, vanquishing former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney and prevailing despite a weak economy that plagued his first term and put a crimp in the middle class dreams of millions. “This happened because of you. Thank you” Obama tweeted to supporters as he celebrated four more years in the White House. Republican Mitt Romney called President Barack Obama to con- See OBAMA, Page 16A

Not called


R.I. Del. D.C. Unofficial results as of 1 a.m. EST

BOSTON — Mitt Romney staked his campaign on the economy, and the economy let him down. For years, Romney promoted himself as a turnaround artist, a corporate expert with extensive executive experience who knew how to make systems work. He would point to his See ROMNEY, Page 16A


U . S . S E N AT E

Democrats vote in force for candidates

Casey easily beats wealthy challenger

County goes Democratic in most races. Overall turnout was lower than in 2008.

Republican Tom Smith poured $16 million of own money into losing campaign.


WILKES-BARRE – The Democratic Party showed its strength in Luzerne County on Tuesday, giving large vote totals to President Barack Obama, U.S. Sen. Bob Casey and all statewide office seekers. Turnout, while stronger than the 35 percent seen in off-year elections, was down to 64.7 percent compared to 73.5 percent in the 2008 presidential election. And the county went Democrat-

A NEWS Local 3A Nation & World 8A Obituaries 10A, 11A


Voters in line outside the Trucksville Methodist Church education building faced about a 15-minute wait at 5:30 p.m. Tuesday.

ic in most races. In the contest for official final results posted online the White House, Barack Obama by the Luzerne County Bureau of outpolled Mitt Romney 63,970 votes to 57,979, according to un- See LUZERNE , Page 6A

Big Red

Crestwood wins playoff game. Story, 1B

Editorial B SPORTS B BUSINESS Weather

15A 7B 8B

C TASTE Birthdays Television Movies

SCRANTON – Surrounded by friends, family and supporters in his hometown, Bob Casey declared victory late Tuesday night in his bid for a second sixyear term in the U.S. Senate. In unofficial results, Casey, 52, defeated Tom Smith, a businessman and former coal com-

4C 8C 8C

Puzzles D CLASSIFIED Comics


pany owner from Plumcreek Township, Armstrong County, securing 2,820,482 votes, 53.7, percent of the

statewide total. Just before 11 p.m. Casey’s wife, Terese, introduced her husband, who took the stage in the grand Ballroom at the Hilton Scranton & Conference See CASEY, Page 6A

9C 12D 6

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SENATE Continued from Page 7A


President Barack Obama is embraced by a volunteer as he visits a campaign office the morning of the 2012 election, Tuesday in Chicago.



How Luzerne County voted in the presidential race, according to the county Election Bureau unofficial results

Continued from Page 1A

the Senate with surprising ease. Republicans were on course for the same in the House, making it likely that Speaker John Boehner of Ohio, Obama’s partner in unsuccessful deficit talks, would reclaim his seat at the bargaining table. Romney led narrowly in the popular vote with ballots counted in 74 percent of the nation’s precincts. But Obama’s laserlike focus on the battleground states allowed him to run up a sizeable margin in the competition for electoral votes, where it mattered. He won Ohio, Wisconsin, Virginia, Iowa, New Hampshire, Colorado and Nevada, seven of the nine battlegrounds where the rivals and their allies poured nearly $1 billion into dueling television commercials. Romney was in Massachusetts, his long and grueling bid for the presidency at an unsuccessful end. He won North Carolina among the battleground states. Florida remained too close to call. The election emerged as a choice between two very different visions of government — whether it occupies a major, front-row place in American lives or is in the background as a lessobtrusive facilitator for private enterprise and entrepreneurship. The economy was rated the top issue by about 60 percent of voters surveyed as they left their polling places. But more said former President George W. Bush bore responsibility for current circumstances than Obama did after nearly four years in office. That bode well for the president, who had worked to turn the election into a choice between his proposals and Romney’s, rather than the simple referendum on the economy during his time in the White House.

ROMNEY Continued from Page 1A

stewardship rescuing the scandal-plagued 2002 Salt Lake City Olympics, and his record at Bain Capital, the private equity firm he co-founded, in helping companies succeed. The Republican nominee tried hard to convince voters the economy should be doing better, that President Barack Obama lacked the knowhow to manage and improve it. Obama looked vulnerable. Just one year ago, his approval rating had sunk to 41 percent, driven down by a sluggish economic recovery and a disillusioned, divided public. But the numbers were just not bad enough to warrant replacing the president. The unemployment rate in October was 7.9 percent — a tick above

Obama 51.5%

Romney 46.7%

Mark Guydish/The Times Leader

Unemployment stood at 7.9 percent on election day, higher than when he took office. And despite signs of progress, the economy is still struggling after the worst recession in history. There was no doubt about what drove voters to one candidate or the other. About 4 in 10 said the economy is on the mend, but more than that said it was stagnant or getting worse more than four years after the near-collapse of 2008. The survey was conducted for The Associated Press and a group of television networks. In the battle for the Senate, Democrats won seats currently held by Republicans in Indiana and Massachusetts. In Maine, independent former Gov. Angus King was elected to succeed retiring GOP Sen. Olympia Snowe. He has not yet said which party he will side with, but Republicans attacked him in television advertising during the race, and Democrats rushed to his cause. Polls were still open in much of the country as the two rivals began claiming the spoils of a brawl of an election in a year in which the struggling economy put a crimp in the middle class dreams of millions. The president was in Chicago as he awaited the voters’ verdict on his four years in office. He

told reporters he had a concession speech as well as victory remarks prepared. He congratulated Romney on a spirited campaign. “I know his supporters are just as engaged, just as enthusiastic and working just as hard today” as Obama’s own, he added. Romney reciprocated, congratulating the man who he had campaigned against for more than a year. Earlier, he raced to Ohio and Pennsylvania for Election Day campaigning and projected confidence as he flew home to Massachusetts. “We fought to the very end, and I think that’s why we’ll be successful,” he said, adding that he had finished writing a speech anticipating victory but nothing if the election went to his rival. But the mood soured among the Republican high command as the votes came in and Obama ground out a lead in critical states. Like Obama, Vice President Joe Biden was in Chicago as he waited to find out if he was in line for a second term. Republican running mate Paul Ryan was with Romney in Boston, although he kept one eye on his reelection campaign for a House seat in Wisconsin, just in case. The long campaign’s cost soared into the billions, much of it spent on negative ads, some

harshly so. In the presidential race, an estimated one million commercials aired in nine battleground states where the rival camps agreed the election was most likely to be settled — Ohio, New Hampshire, Virginia, Florida, North Carolina, Wisconsin, Iowa, Colorado and Nevada. In a months-long general election ad war that cost nearly $1 billion, Romney and Republican groups spent more than $550 million and Obama and his allies $381 million, according to organizations that track advertising. In Virginia, the polls had been closed for several minutes when Obama’s campaign texted a call for volunteers “to make sure everyone who’s still in line gets to vote.” In Florida, there were long lines at the hour set for polls to close. Under state law, everyone waiting was entitled to cast a ballot. According to the exit poll, 53 percent of voters said Obama is more in touch with people like them, compared to 43 percent for Romney. About 60 percent said taxes should be increased, taking sides on an issue that divided the president and Romney. Obama wants to let taxes rise on upper incomes, while Romney does not. Other than the battlegrounds, big states were virtually ignored in the final months of the campaign. Romney wrote off New York, Illinois and California, while Obama made no attempt to carry Texas, much of the South or the Rocky Mountain region other than Colorado.

the 7.8 percent the month Obama took office, but well below the 10 percent peak of October 2009. The economy grew at a 2 percent clip in the third quarter — not robust, but hardly a recession. And consumer confidence, a key measure of voter sentiment, was up last month. “He felt the economy was going to be enough. It really wasn’t,” Colorado-based political analyst Floyd Ciruli said of Romney. The economy’s slow-but-steady improvement robbed Romney of his best argument for why people should vote against Obama, but he also failed to make a clear case for why people should choose him instead. Romney was dogged throughout the campaign by charges he was too quick to change his views, too inauthentic. Conservatives distrusted him because of his moderate

ways while governor of Massachusetts from 2003 to 2007. Moderates were wary because he seemed to shift sharply right during his presidential run. As a result, “he was everybody’s second choice in the (Republican) primaries,” said Lee Miringoff, director of the Marist Institute for Public Opinion. On issue after issue, Romney’s views seemed to change to fit his political needs. His quest for likability took a hit in September with the release of a video recorded at a fundraising event that put Romney’s campaign on the defensive. In the video, Romney said that 47 percent of Americans would vote for Obama “no matter what.” He characterized the president’s supporters as irresponsible “victims” who pay no income tax and are “dependent upon government.” The video, published online

by Mother Jones, reinforced the Obama campaign’s attack that Romney was an out-of-touch rich snob, a label he never quite managed to shake. “He defined Romney before Romney did,” said Ciruli, the pollster. Romney contended that his business success made him uniquely qualified to lead the country out of recession, but his huge personal fortune — worth up to $250 million — proved an impediment from the start. Romney repeatedly stumbled into awkward gaffes such as offering a $10,000 bet during a primary debate, referring to wife Ann’s “two Cadillacs,” and boasting of his friendship with “NASCAR team owners.” The off-the-cuff remarks made Romney vulnerable to accusations that he was out of touch with ordinary Americans struggling in the aftermath of the economic crisis.


Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney waves to reporters after he took questions on his campaign plane Tuesday.

ginia was closely linked to the presidential race. Republicans and Democrats in Massachusetts, North Dakota and Montana hoped that energetic campaigns and personality would lead to ticket-splitting by voters In Maine, independent Angus King prevailed over Republican Charlie Summers and Democrat Cynthia Dill in the race to replace Republican Sen. Olympia Snowe, who blamed partisan gridlock in Washington for her unexpected decision to retire after 18 years in the Senate. Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid, DNev., wasted no time, reaching out to King, according to a Senate aide. In Ohio, Democratic Sen. Sherrod Brown survived an onslaught of outside spending, some $30 million, to defeat state treasurer Josh Mandel. In Pennsylvania, Democratic Sen. Bob Casey survived a late scare from businessman Tom Smith, who invested more than $17 million of his own money in the race. Democratic Rep. Chris Murphy won the Connecticut Senate seat held by Sen. Joe Lieberman, the independent who was the Democratic Party’s vice presidential nominee in 2000. Murphy’s win marked the second straight defeat for former wrestling executive Linda McMahon, who spent $50 million of her own wealth in a failed effort against Sen. Richard Blumenthal in 2010 and more than $42 million this election cycle. Texas sent tea party-backed Ted Cruz to the Senate as the Republican won the seat held by retiring GOP Sen. Kay B. ailey Hutchison. Cruz will become the third Hispanic in the Senate, joining Sen. Bob Menendez, D-N.J., and Marco Rubio, RFla. In Florida, Democratic Sen. Bill Nelson triumphed in his bid for a third term, holding off a challenge from Republican Rep. Connie Mack. Republican groups had spent heavily against Nelson early in the race, but the moderate Democrat was a prolific fundraiser with wide appeal among Democrats and some Republicans in the Panhandle. Independent Sen. Bernie Sanders won a second term in Vermont. Democratic Sens. Sheldon Whitehouse in Rhode Island, Ben Cardin in Maryland and Tom Carper in Delaware were all re-elected. Cruising to

HOUSE Continued from Page 7A

Though all 435 House seats were in play, only around 60 featured truly competitive races. Democrats targeted many of the 87 members of the GOP’s tea party-backed freshman class of 2010 that swept the party to House control. Only about two dozen faced threatening challenges. As Obama’s lead over GOP challenger Mitt Romney shriveled to a near draw as Election Day approached, Democrats’ expectations for coattails that would boost their House candidates shrunk as well. Republicans, building off their enhanced control of statehouses, also did a robust job of protecting their incumbents and weakening Democrats when congressional district lines were redrawn after the 2010 census, especially in states like Pennsylvania and North Carolina. The economy and jobs dominated the presidential campaign, but there was little evidence either party had harnessed those issues in a decisive way at the House level. Both sides agreed that this year’s election lacked a nationwide wave that would give either side sweeping strength — as occurred when Democrats seized control in 2006 and expanded their majority in 2008, and Republicans snatched the chamber back in 2010. Democrats had predicted that waning public support for the tea party movement and disgust with gridlock between Congress and Obama would cost Republicans seats. They also said the House GOP budget and its reshaping of the popular Medicare health care program would wound House Re-

another term were Democratic Sens. Debbie Stabenow in Michigan, Kirsten Gillibrand in New York, Amy Klobuchar in Minnesota and Menendez in New Jersey. In West Virginia, Democratic Sen. Joe Manchin won a full term even though his state went heavily for Republican presidential nominee Mitt Romney. Tennesseans gave Republican Sen. Bob Corker a second term. Wyoming voters did the same for Sen. John Barrasso, and Republican Roger Wicker captured another term in Mississippi. King has resolutely refused to say which party he’d side with if elected, and the outcome of the presidential election and the final Senate lineup could influence his decision. Members of both parties have indicated that they expect King — former governor and one-time Democrat who supports President Barack Obama — to align with Democrats. One factor could be the million-plus dollars that Republican-leaning groups such as the U.S. Chamber of Commerce and Karl Rove’s organization spent on ads criticizing King. The arithmetic was daunting for Democrats at the start of the election cycle — they had to defend 23 seats to the GOP’s 10. Further complicating the calculation were Democratic retirements in Virginia, Wisconsin, North Dakota, Hawaii, Nebraska and New Mexico as well as the retirement of Lieberman. Republicans had to deal with retirements in Arizona, Texas and Maine. Republican hopes of reclaiming the Senate suffered a major blow when the GOP candidate in Missouri made awkward remarks about rape and abortion. Democratic Sen. Claire McCaskill was considered the most vulnerable incumbent, but Republican Rep. Todd Akin severely damaged his candidacy in August when he said women’s bodies have ways of avoiding pregnancy in instances of “legitimate rape.” GOP leaders, including Romney, called on him to abandon the race. Akin stayed in and is counting on support from evangelicals to lift his prospects in a state that favors Romney. Democrats and Republicans in a dozen states faced an onslaught of outside money that financed endless negative commercials and ugly mailings that left voters exasperated. The record independent spending — $50 million in Virginia and $40 million in Wisconsin in addition to $33 million in Ohio — reflected the highstakes fight for the Senate.

publican candidates — especially after the fiscal blueprint’s author, GOP Rep. Paul Ryan of Wisconsin, became his party’s vice presidential nominee. From coast to coast, Democrats flooded the airwaves with TV spots linking GOP candidates to the tea party and to crusades to abolish Medicare and slash taxes for the rich. Republicans responded by tying Democratic candidates to Obama and his economic stimulus and health care overhaul laws, especially in areas where he is less popular. Going into Tuesday’s voting, Republicans controlled the House 242-193, including vacancies in two formerly GOP-held and three Democratic seats. Turnover was inevitable, and a large number of newcomers will be sworn into the House in January no matter what. There were 62 districts where no incumbents were running at all, either because they had retired or lost earlier party primaries or because the seats were newly created to reflect the census. When combined with likely losses by incumbents, the number of new House members in the next Congress could match the 91 freshmen who started serving in 2011 — a number unmatched since 1993. Polls underscored the public sentiment that Democrats had hoped they could use to their advantage. A CBS News-New York Times poll late last month showed just 15 percent of Americans approved of how Congress was handling its job, near its historic lows. And an Associated Press-GfK poll in August showed that 39 percent approved of congressional Democrats while just 31 percent were satisfied with congressional Republicans.

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SPORTS: Dunmore Bucks fall in state title game. 4B


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SAVE on a seafood dinner at O-Live Restaurant. 12A

The Times Leader




Gunman kills 26 at Connecticut school, mother, himself Rampage is nation’s second-deadliest school shooting



In this photo provided by the Newtown Bee, Connecticut State Police lead a line of children from the Sandy Hook Elementary School in Newtown, Conn. on Friday after a shooting at the school.

Tragedy strikes small town of Newtown, Conn. By JOHN CHRISTOFFERSEN Associated Press

NEWTOWN, Conn. — A man killed his mother at their home and then opened fire Friday inside an elementary school, massacring 26 people, including 20 children, as youngsters cowered in fear to the sound of gunshots reverberating through the building and screams echoing over the intercom. The 20-year-old killer, carrying at least two handguns, committed suicide at the school, bringing the death toll to 28, authorities said. The rampage, coming less than two weeks before Christmas, was the nation’s second-deadliest school shooting, exceeded only by the Virginia Tech massacre that claimed 33 lives in 2007.

Police shed no light on the motive for the attack. The gunman, Adam Lanza, was believed to suffer from a personality disorder and lived with his mother, said a law enforcement official who was briefed on the investigation but was not authorized to discuss it. Panicked parents looking for their children raced to Sandy Hook Elementary in Newtown, a prosperous New England community of about 27,000 people 60 miles northeast of New York City. Police told youngsters at the kindergartenthrough-fourth-grade school to close their eyes as they were led from the building so that they wouldn’t see the blood and broken glass.

See NEWTOWN, Page 6A

Former pastor made false claim, center spokesman says By TERRIE MORGAN-BESECKER

WILKE-BARRE – The former pastor of a Wilkes-Barre church falsely claimed a cancer treatment center in Philadelphia was sponsoring a raffle to raise money to pay for his wife’s treatments, according to a spokesman for the center. Hugh McDermott, compliance director for the Cancer Treatment Centers of America, said the Rev. Eugene Lewis, for-


Eugene Lewis

mer pastor at First Church of Christ church, did not have permission to use the center’s name in soliciting donations for his

wife, Amy. McDermott also said Amy Lewis was never a patient at the cenSee PASTOR, Page 12A

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How shooting occurred By JOHN CHRISTOFFERSEN and JOCELYN NOVECK Associated Press

MORE/INSIDE PRESIDENT RESPONDS: Obama: Deaths highlight need for ‘meaningful action,’ 7A LOCAL REACTION: Schools use various tools to boost preparedness, 6A HISTORY: Recalling some of the world’s worst mass shootings, 7A PAIN IN A SMALL TOWN: Newtown was picture-perfect small town, 7A

NEWTOWN, Conn. — First, he killed his mother. Nancy Lanza’s body was found later at their home on Yogananda Street in Newtown — after the carnage at Sandy Hook Elementary School; after a quiet New England town was scarred forever by unthinkable tragedy; after a nation seemingly inured to violence found itself stunned by the slaughter of innocents.

Nobody knows why 20-yearold Adam Lanza killed his mother, why he then took her guns to the school and murdered 20 children and six adults. But on Friday he drove his mother’s car through this 300year-old town with its fine old churches and towering trees, and arrived at a school full of the season’s joy. Somehow, he got past a security door to a place where children should have been safe from harm. See SHOOTING, Page 6A

County scanning accepts ‘buddy punching’ Controller discovers employees can clock absent co-workers in time system. By JENNIFER LEARN-ANDES

The prior county administration selected the more expensive finger scan system because it was supposed to prevent this type of “buddy punching.” Workers must enter their personal employee code into a device and then wait until the system accepts their finger scan verifying their identity. But Griffith demonstrated Friday that employees can clock other workers in and out if they have

Luzerne County government employees can clock absent coworkers in and out on the county’s biometric time system because it accepts the wrong finger scan, county Controller Walter Griffith See SCANNING, Page 12A discovered Friday.

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Luzerne County Controller Walter Griffith, center, and Kingston resident Brian Shiner watch county controller’s office auditor Patti Llewellyn log in a co-worker who wasn’t present.

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Area schools prepare regularly In Luzerne County, various agencies including PSP used for training, drills. By MARK GUYDISH


A woman waits to hear about her sister, a teacher, following a shooting at the Sandy Hook Elementary School in Newtown, Conn., Friday.

NEWTOWN Continued from Page 1A

Schoolchildren — some crying, others looking frightened — were escorted through a parking lot in a line, hands on each other’s shoulders. Law enforcement officials speaking on condition of anonymity said that Lanza killed his mother, Nancy Lanza, then drove to the school in her car with at least three guns, including a highpowered rifle that he apparently left in the back of the vehicle, and shot up two classrooms around 9:30 a.m. A custodian ran through the halls, warning of a gunman on the loose, and someone switched on the intercom, alerting people in the building to the attack — and perhaps saving many lives — by letting them hear the hysteria going on in the school office, a teacher said. Teachers locked their doors and ordered children to huddle in a corner or hide in closets as shots echoed through the building. Authorities gave no details on exactly how the attack unfolded, but police radio traffic indicated the shooting lasted only a few minutes. State police Lt. Paul Vance said officers arrived instantaneously, immediately entered the school, searched it completely and found Lanza dead. In addition to the 20 children, six adults were killed at the school; the principal was believed to be among the dead. A woman who worked at Sandy Hook Elementary was wounded. A law enforcement official speaking on condition of anonymity said investigators believe Lanza attended the school several years ago but appeared to have no recent connection to the place. At least one parent said Lanza’s mother was a substitute teacher there. But her name did not appear on a staff list. And the law enforcement official said investigators were unable to establish any connection so far between her and the school. Lanza’s older brother, 24-yearold Ryan, of Hoboken, N.J., was being questioned, but a law enforcement official said he was not believed to have had a role in the rampage. Investigators were

SHOOTING Continued from Page 1A

Theodore Varga and other fourth-grade teachers were meeting; the glow remained from the previous night’s fourth-grade concert. “It was a lovely day,” Varga said. “Everybody was joyful and cheerful. We were ending the week on a high note.” And then, suddenly and unfathomably, gunshots rang out. “I can’t even remember how many,” he said. The fourth-graders, the oldest kids in the school, were in specialty classes like gym and music. There was no lock on the meeting room door, so the teachers had to think about how

TEAM HELPS TRAGEDY The Scranton/Wilkes-Barre RailRiders will donate 10 percent of all sales from today’s Holiday Tent Sale to the families of the victims in the shooting at Sandy Hook Elementary school in Newtown, Conn. Cash donations will also be accepted at the sale which will take place from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. at PNC Field. “In the wake of something so awful, we just want to make a small contribution,” said RailRiders president and general manager, Rob Crain. “Our thoughts and prayers are with the families of the victims.”

searching his computers and phone records, but he told law enforcement he had not been in touch with his brother since about 2010. The officials spoke on the condition of anonymity because they were not authorized to discuss the unfolding investigation. At one point, a law enforcement official mistakenly identified the gunman as Ryan Lanza. Brett Wilshe, a friend of Ryan Lanza’s, said Lanza told him the gunman may have had his identification. Ryan Lanza apparently posted Facebook page updates Friday afternoon that read, “It wasn’t me” and “I was at work.” Robert Licata said his 6-yearold son was in class when the gunman burst in and shot the teacher. “That’s when my son grabbed a bunch of his friends and ran out the door,” he said. “He was very brave. He waited for his friends.” He said the shooter didn’t utter a word. Stephen Delgiadice said his 8year-old daughter heard two big bangs. Teachers told her to get in a corner, he said. “It’s alarming, especially in Newtown, Connecticut, which we always thought was the safest place in America,” he said. His daughter was uninjured. Theodore Varga was in a meeting with other fourth-grade teachers when he heard the gunfire. He said someone had turned on the intercom so that “you could hear people in the office. You could hear the hysteria that was going on. I think whoever did that saved a lot of people. Everyone in the school was listening to the terror that was transpiring.” Also, a custodian ran around, warning people there was someto escape, knowing that their students were with other teachers. Someone turned the loudspeaker on, so everyone could hear what was happening in the office. Gathered in another room for a 9:30 meeting were principal Dawn Hochsprung and Diane Day, a school therapist, along with a school psychologist, other staff members and a parent. They were meeting to discuss a second-grader. “We were there for about five minutes chatting, and we heard Pop! Pop!, Pop!” Day told The Wall Street Journal. “I went under the table.” But Hochsprung and the psychologist leaped out of their seats and ran out of the room, Day recalled. “They didn’t think


A mother hugs her daughter following a shooting at the Sandy Hook Elementary School in Newtown, Conn. Friday.

one with a gun, Varga said. “He said, ‘Guys! Get down! Hide!’” Varga said. “So he was actually a hero.” The teacher said he did not know if the custodian survived. Mergim Bajraliu, 17, said he heard the gunshots echo from his home and ran to check on his 9year-old sister at the school. He said his sister, who was uninjured, heard a scream come over the intercom. He said teachers were shaking and crying as they came out of the building. “Everyone was just traumatized,” he said. On Friday night, hundreds of people packed a Newtown church and stood outside in a vigil for the victims. People held hands, lit candles and sang “Silent Night” at St. Rose of Lima church. Anthony Bloss, whose three daughters survived the shootings, said they are doing better than he is. “I’m numb. I’m completely numb,” he said at the vigil. Mary Pendergast said her 9year-old nephew was in the school at the time of the shooting but wasn’t hurt after his music teacher helped him take cover in a closet.

Richard Wilford’s 7-year-old son, Richie, told him that he heard a noise that sounded like “cans falling.” The boy said a teacher went out to check on the noise, came back in, locked the door and had the children huddle in the corner until police arrived. “There’s no words,” Wilford said. “It’s sheer terror, a sense of imminent danger, to get to your child and be there to protect him.” On Friday afternoon, family members were led away from a firehouse that was being used as a staging area, some of them weeping. One man, wearing a T-shirt without a jacket, put his arms around a woman as they walked down the middle of the street, oblivious to everything around them. Another woman with tears rolling down her face walked by, carrying a car seat with a baby inside. “Evil visited this community today and it’s too early to speak of recovery, but each parent, each sibling, each member of the family has to understand that Connecticut — we’re all in this together. We’ll do whatever we can to overcome this event,” Gov. Dannel Malloy said.

twice about confronting or seeing what was going on,” she said. Hochsprung was killed, and the psychologist was believed to have been killed as well. A custodian ran around, warning people there was a gunman, Varga said.

In the gym, crying fourthgraders huddled in a corner. One of them was 10-year-old Philip Makris. “He said he heard a lot of loud noises and then screaming,” said his mother, Melissa Makris. “Then the gym teachers immediately gathered the children in a corner and kept them safe.” Another girl who was in the gym recalled hearing “like, seven loud booms.” An 8-year-old boy described how a teacher saved him. “I saw some of the bullets going past the hall that I was right next to, and then a teacher pulled me into her classroom,” said the boy, who was not identified by

‘Wait for the good guys’ In a first-grade classroom, teacher Kaitlin Roig heard the shots. She immediately barricaded her 15 students into a tiny bathroom, sitting one of them on top of the toilet. She pulled a bookshelf across the door and locked it. She told the kids to be “absolutely quiet.” “I said, ‘There are bad guys out there now. We need to wait for the good guys,”’ she told ABC News.

The Connecticut school shooting Friday occurred just as area districts are reviewing their own security measures and updating staff training. The Luzerne Intermediate Unit has been administering a program designed by a private company called Seraph through funding with the Department of Homeland Security. Dallas Superintendent Frank Galicki said his district participated in the program this fall. “Each school brought in a team of approximately six to eight people – principals, supervisors, safety people, buildings and grounds staff – and each member was trained on what to look for” in conducting a school safety audit, Galicki said. The teams looked for weaknesses in school set up and procedures drew up a report and submitted it for review. The district is awaiting a response with final recommendations. “You look through the school thinking of different scenarios and using a different set of eyes, checking things like lighting at night, security doors,” Galicki said. The audit did find weaknesses in the district schools, though none were serious. “We are reviewing and enhancing security protocols in order to make sure everything is in place that should be in place,” he said. Older schools susceptible Training and procedure can only go so far, and older schools tend to be more susceptible to security problems. Dallas’s new high school, opened in 2011, has numerous cameras, a lobby at the entrance with locked doors between visitor and the rest of the schools, a metal detector at the student entrance and outside doors that sound alarms if propped open too long. Dallas Elementary, by comparison, is an older building with far fewer security features. Wilkes-Barre Area will go through the Seraph training and safety audits in January, Curriculum Supervisor Andrew Kuhl said, adding that a total of seven local districts have signed up for the training. But the district didn’t wait for the Seraph program to begin. Security Director Brian Lavan said the district trains staff for incidents – including “active shooters” getting into the school – several times a year. “We just did one at Heights Elementary,” Lavan said. “We tell them what it’s going to be like, what we learned from Columbine and other school shootings, what an active shooter’s mentality is when they come into the school.” The primary reaction is a “lock down,” with teachers locking classrooms and positioning students as out of site as possible, Lavan said, though the response may vary depending on the school and circum-

room to room, removing children and staff from harm’s way. They found Adam Lanza, dead by his own hand after shooting up two classrooms; no officer fired a gun. Student Brendan Murray told WABC-TV it was chaos in his classroom at first after he heard loud bangs and screaming. A police officer came in and asked, “Is he in here?” and then ran out. “Then our teacher, somebody, yelled, ‘Get to a safe place.’ Then we went to a closet in the gym and we sat there for a little while, and then the police were, like, knocking on the door and they were, like, ‘We’re evacuating people, we’re evacuating people,’ so we ran out.” Children, warned to close Police find shooter dead their eyes so they could not see Carefully, police searched the product of his labors, were

stances. The training is always updated as the district reviews any recent events, he added. While all “You look schools have electronic through latches and rethe school quirements for visitors to thinking of buzz in, sign in and be esdifferent to any scenarios corted destination, a and using a determined person may different force their set of way in, and Lavan conceded eyes, that can prechecking sent a difficult things like problem. “If their lighting at mindset is to night, se- come in and wreak havoc, curity it’s a pretty tough thing to doors.” deal with,” he Frank Galicki said. Dallas Wyoming superintendent Valley West opted out of the Seraph program, Superintendent Chuck Suppon said, deciding to bring in State Police during the summer to walk through the schools and offer advice. “They talked about certain issues they felt we need to tighten up at the high school, including the number of entrances,” Suppon said. Among other things, police saw a student prop open an outside door for a classmate. “We’ve been making the changes one at a time,” Suppon said. “This is an ongoing process.” The district also works closely with local police in each school, meeting with police chiefs on an annual basis. The district ran an “active shooter” drill about a month ago, he added. Security measures can go beyond staff. Suppon said about two years ago the student council raised money, consulted with local law enforcement and tinted cafeteria windows, making it harder for those outside to see in. If security measures fail And while it’s not something most people want to think about, the district also prepared for “reactive measures,” in case all the security fails, Suppon said. “The high school has put together buckets with class rosters and from 200 to 400 supplies such as medicines, in case something unfortunate would happen. “You always use a proactive approach, but no one can say it absolutely will never happen hear,” Suppon said. “Look at where these tragedies are happening. They are not happening in urban areas. They have metal detectors, they have dogs, they have security. It’s happening, unfortunately, in school districts like those we have in Luzerne County. You can’t sit and say it won’t happen here.” led away from their school. Gov. Dannel P. Malloy and other public officials came to the firehouse. So did clergymen like Monsignor Robert Weiss of Newtown’s St. Rose Roman Catholic Church. He watched as parents came to realize that they would never see their children alive again. “All of them were hoping their child would be found OK. But when they gave out the actual death toll, they realized their child was gone,” Weiss said. He recalled the reaction of the brother of one of the victims. “They told a little boy it was his sister who passed on,” Weiss said. “The boy’s response was, ‘I’m not going to have anyone to play with.”’

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