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Burglars foiled by Amherst family


AMHERST, NY – An Amherst man and his two children interrupted a home burglary Saturday afternoon, confronting the would-be thieves in their home and giving police information that would lead to an arrest.

When they arrived at their Ransom Oaks Drive home just after 1 p.m., they found a car driven by a woman they don't know parked in the driveway. As the father went over to the car to speak to the driver, his son, age 17, and daughter, 13, entered the house. That's when they encountered a male intruder in their home.

Amherst Police say the son grabbed the burglar and his sister punched him, breaking his sunglasses.

The intruder escaped but police soon traced their vehicle to an address on Dodge Road. They arrested suspects Stacey Berke, 27, and Daniel Cimino, 38, and charged them with second-degree robbery and burglary, and grand larceny.

Amherst Schools, Police Partner For Unique Safety Program


AMHERST, N.Y. -- School tragedies like Columbine and Sandy Hook Elementary have transformed school safety. From visitor passes, to lockdown drills, schools take every precaution they can these days.

One district in Western New York is even farther ahead of the curve: Amherst Central Schools have local police on standby to access school video surveillance.

It starting with having to sign in and sign out. Next, it was locking the doors while school is in session. Next it was locking the doors while school is in session.

"We were actually able to fully do that district wide about three years ago, where each of our buildings now have the buzz in systems," said Superintendent Laura Chabe.

Even before that though, about five years ago, Amherst Central Schools were working on something bigger: Video surveillance that police could access in an emergency.

Challenge Gift to Help Create the Stella Niagara Preserve Will Match New Donations Dollar for Dollar

Challenge Gift to Help Create the Stella Niagara Preserve Will Match New Donations Dollar for Dollar

 

The Western New York Land Conservancy and the Friends of the Stella Niagara Preserve announced that they received a $200,000 challenge gift from a local couple, Pamela and Joe Priest, to help create the Stella Niagara Preserve, a new nature preserve on the Niagara River in Lewiston. When this $200,000 challenge gift is matched by the Buffalo-Niagara community, the project’s fundraising goal will have been met. The Land Conservancy is now asking residents, businesses and foundations to donate and match this challenge gift by June 1, 2015, in order to complete the project on time and open the preserve to the public later this year. 

Catholic Charities Appeal Week 2015 Opens with $7.43 Million Raised Toward $10.9 Million Goal

Catholic Charities Appeal Week 2015 Opens with $7.43 Million Raised  Toward $10.9 Million Goal

The Most Reverend Richard J. Malone, bishop of the Diocese of Buffalo, announced Tuesday, March 24, Catholic Charities’ 91st annual Appeal has raised $7,432,587.16 to date, representing 68 percent of the $10.9 million goal. The total includes monies collected and reported by parish volunteers during the opening weekend (March 21-22) of Appeal Week 2015, the period which marks the strongest push for parish donations.

The total reported is more than $500,000 short of where Catholic Charities’ officials and the Appeal leadership team hoped to be after the first Sunday.

Funds raised for Appeal 2015 support Catholic Charities’ 70 programs and services offered across 61 sites throughout the eight counties of Western New York, and the Bishop’s Fund for the Faith, which supports related ministries of the Diocese of Buffalo.
    

UB hosting celebration for both hoops teams


AMHERST, NY - The University at Buffalo is throwing a party to welcome back both its men's and women's basketball teams.

The men won their first ever MAC title and made their first trip to the NCAA tournament, losing a close game Friday to West Virginia. The women's team made it to their first-ever NIT tournament but they lost, too. Both teams still made Buffalo proud.

UB will host a public celebration for the teams Monday afternoon at 3 p.m. at Alumni Arena.


Amherst Man to Receive Kidney from Younger Brother


Amherst, NY - An Amherst man who was diagnosed with kidney disease when he was a little boy now needs a kidney transplant.

Frank Gengo did not have to look far for a donor though. He will soon receive a kidney from his younger brother, Chris.

"When I was a child, I couldn't do contact sports. That wasn't such a big deal. As I became an adult, and a father and husband, life was pretty normal. But during the past year and a half, as things have changed, I've had to lean a lot more on my family, my wife, my children," explains Frank Gengo.

Frank Gengo's kidney function has steadily decreased. In June, his doctors told him he would need a transplant.

"Both kidneys have such a minimal function that I'm at a point now where I'm going to need a kidney, or very soon I'll have to go on dialysis," says Frank.

Daemen’s Geppetto Festival to Bring New Life to Art of Puppetry

Daemen’s Geppetto Festival to Bring New Life to Art of Puppetry

The artistic talents of puppeteers from across the United States will be showcased in the second annual Geppetto Festival, named after the beloved woodcarver from the children’s classic “Pinocchio,” scheduled for April 15 as part of the Daemen College Academic Festival.

“The Geppetto Festival is intended to share enriching presentations and performances to help bring new life to puppetry,” said Cameron Garrity, festival director. “Whether young or young at heart, the festival will give audiences the chance to explore new avenues of puppetry beyond Sesame Street and other well-known shows.”