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Thoroghly Good birthday for city teen

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Rock band shows local boy they're good to the bone
Carol Fox, Mountain
Hamilton Mountain News Photo
PHOTO BY STEPHAN BALLING

(Sep 1, 2006)

It was a thoroughly good birthday present for 16 year old mountain resident David Colantino when his family told him he would be going to see his rock'n'roll heroes George Thorogood and the Destroyers for his birthday. What nobody knew was how much better things could get.

Dave, who has Down Syndrome, has been entertaining his family for years with his full volume renditions of Bad to the Bone and Get a Haircut and Get a Real Job, so when they found out the band was coming to Niagara Falls this summer they bought him a ticket. As Dave and his dad, Peter, were leaving Hamilton for the concert August 11, sister Sarah told him to take his birthday card with him. Why? Was the question on everyone's mind, but Dave still took the card, which plays Thorogood's hit song "Bad to the Bone".

As they stood in the lobby of the Fallsview Casino waiting for the show to begin, dad Peter noticed a man in black whom he thought might be connected with the show. He said he and his son were here for Dave's 16th birthday, and he wondered if the man might be able to have the card autographed. When the man saw the card, he said he knew George and the band would a big kick out of it.

"I'll take it backstage but I'm not sure whether I'll get it back to you before or after the show," said the man whose name was Paul.

Just before the show started, Paul was back with the autographed card and a drumstick the drummer had signed for Dave, who of course was thrilled.

Inside the concert, the band played the opening chords of Bad to the Bone, then stopped.

"I want to dedicate this next song to my new friend, Dave, on his 16th birthday," said Dave's idol, then launched into the tune amid loud cheers from the audience.

Later, at a restaurant, Dave was showing his treasures to the waitress, who summoned the rest of the staff to sing Happy Birthday as she brought a chocolate sundae for the birthday boy. Three tables of people sitting nearby had also just come from the concert, and joined in the singing and cheering.

Bikers fill up scholarship tank

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This story from the Akron Beacon Journal is a little late, but worth sharing...


Hundreds ride to help raise funds for fallen officers' kids

By Elbert Starks III

Beacon Journal staff writer

The roar of hundreds of motorcycles would normally be enough to elicit a few concerned calls to the police department.

On Sunday afternoon, however, hundreds of motorcyclists were mingling with Akron and Cleveland police officers during the fifth annual Police Memorial Motorcycle Run, a scholarship fund-raiser for children of officers killed in the line of duty.

The rally came to Akron, where more than 800 bikes parked along several blocks of South High Street near the Harold K. Stubbs Justice Center.

Robert Beck, president of the Cleveland Police Patrolmen's Association, estimated about 1,200 people -- officers and civilians -- rode in the procession.

At a cost of $30 for a single rider and $40 for two, the money raised is enough to provide for generous donations to the scholarship funds, officials said.

``I do it to support our fallen brothers,'' said rally rider Charles Curry of Cleveland.

Curry, who has been riding motorcycles for 20 years, owns a Harley-Davidson Road King. He has participated in all five memorial rallies and said he is honored to do so, though logging the 100 miles can be a bit grueling at times.

``It means a lot to come out and support the families of those who have lost someone,'' Curry said. ``It's draining -- that sun, then all of the heat off the bikes, it drains you. At the end of the day... well, everyone will be able to sleep tonight.''

The rally procession began in Warrensville Heights in eastern Cuyahoga County, then headed south toward Akron and back north, ending in Parma. Veteran musician George Thorogood was scheduled to perform later in the evening in honor of the rally participants.

Andy Ezzo, president of the Greater Cleveland Police Scholarship Fund, presented Akron Police Chief Michael T. Matulavich with a check for $2,500 during the rally, which featured the Akron Police Department's Honor Guard. The money will be used to pay the expenses of keeping the memorial flame in front of the justice center lighted at all times.

In his remarks to the crowd, Matulavich said the rally provided an opportunity to create friendships, camaraderie and support between officers and the community. He also reminded the audience to ``never forget the officers who made the ultimate sacrifice.''

After the rally, Matulavich said he was pleased that the event continued to grow.

``We cannot recognize our fallen officers enough,'' he said. ``The people who are doing this aren't ordinary, they're extraordinary. They're raising money for scholarships for the sons and daughters of those who have fallen. That's a great cause.''

- please read this story -

Here's an excerpt:

"A night of rock music and alcohol turned deadly for a Clute man when the SUV he was riding in flew 300 feet from a bridge and crashed, according to Angleton police.

The Lake Jackson driver, Jonathon Tyrel Battle, 26, remained in the Brazoria County Detention Center on Thursday on an intoxication manslaughter charge. His bond had not been set.

Jason Camp, the 26-year-old passenger, died before emergency crews arrived, said Angleton Police Detective Dale Meyer. A passing motorist called police about 6:45 a.m. Thursday after finding the 1995 Chevrolet Blazer by the CR 290 overpass at Highway 288. It is unknown exactly when the accident happened."

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