Stow teacher resigns after lying to police about racist messages

September 04, 2020

A Stow elementary school teacher has resigned after sending racist messages through social media and then filing a fake police report claiming she’d been hacked, according to police and school district officials.

Copley-Fairlawn For All demands changes from school district

July 25, 2020

A group of Copley-Fairlawn students, alumni and community members has made several demands of the school district, from changing its mascot to improving the way Black history is taught in classrooms.

Asian residents account for nearly 1 in 5 Summit County coronavirus cases

June 30, 2020

Asian residents make up just under 4% of the Summit County population but account for nearly 20% of coronavirus cases in the county.

Pulled over nine times, Fairlawn bicyclist wants more understanding from police

June 10, 2020

Sean Wade wants officers to be more aware of the people they’re interacting with, the past experiences they’ve had with law enforcement, the “microtraumas” they cause and the mental scars they leave.

Hundreds of coronavirus test kits arrive in Summit County damaged, unusable

May 13, 2020

As access to testing remains an issue during the coronavirus pandemic, hundreds of coronavirus test kits recently arrived in Summit County damaged and unusable.

Summit County gets $94.4 million in federal money but can’t spend most of it

May 06, 2020

Summit County has received nearly $100 million in funding from the federal government during the coronavirus pandemic but can’t spend most of it.

Coronavirus: Akron lawmaker calls for equal treatment for black patients

April 11, 2020

As deep-rooted racial disparities emerge when it comes to who are the most vulnerable during the coronavirus pandemic, a state representative from Akron wants the medical community to acknowledge and check its biases when treating patients.

Bats finding new ways to survive deadly disease in Summit Metro Parks

February 27, 2020

Biologists with Summit Metro Parks are studying how bats are using unique new locations other than the caves they typically use to hibernate to survive the spread of white-nose syndrome, a deadly disease in hibernating bats that’s decimating bat populations across the country.

As other shopping malls decline, Summit Mall thrives

January 19, 2020

As customers have shifted from shopping in person to shopping online, malls have suffered. But Summit Mall has withstood the fallout and is, in fact, thriving, with nearly every space in the mall occupied and a steady stream of visitors. Why?

Eleven-year-old Akron boy awaits kidney for transplant

January 18, 2020

The first thing Skyler Gordon wants to do after getting a new kidney is eat bananas.

Akron bride left without wedding venue after Rosemont Country Club closes

January 06, 2020

Five months after they got engaged on a balcony overlooking Lake Erie at Cleveland’s Rock and Roll Hall of Fame, Brenna McGovern and Emanuel Parks put down a $1,000 deposit on their dream venue: Rosemont Country Club in Fairlawn. But nine months before their Oct. 3 wedding, the country club has closed, and the couple is scrambling to find a new venue.

Judge validates Yellow Creek Watershed Conservancy District petition

December 20, 2019

After years in limbo and despite a lack of support from most municipalities in the Yellow Creek watershed, a Summit County judge has validated a petition that could lead to the creation of the Yellow Creek Watershed Conservancy District.

Summit County needs more foster homes

December 17, 2019

Nearly five years after their first placement, Amanda and Vanessa Burke — who both had rough childhoods growing up — have adopted three of the five children they’ve fostered and encourage others to consider becoming foster parents in Summit County, which has about 160 foster homes but needs a total of 300 to 400 homes.

New task force aims to improve nursing home care in Summit County

December 12, 2019

After a Beacon Journal investigation of a Copley nursing home that was found to be among the worst in the nation — and that closed after the newspaper's investigation — the Summit County Nursing Homes and Facilities Task Force will examine the condition of nursing homes and other long-term care facilities in the county and advocate for change.

State, local leaders praise plan for new Lordstown plant, but union remains skeptical

December 05, 2019

State and local leaders are excited about the announcement of a new electric vehicle battery plant that’s expected to add 1,100 jobs in the Mahoning Valley and that several said will put Ohio at the forefront of electric vehicle production.

The local autoworkers union also expressed optimism about the battery plant announcement, but its vice president said members remain skeptical.

Summit County Sheriff’s Office facing deputy shortage

December 05, 2019

Despite efforts to recruit new deputies over the past year, including the county paying for them to attend the police academy, the Summit County Sheriff’s Office continues to face a deputy shortage.

Summit Metro Parks celebrates ‘Bert Szabo Day’

December 04, 2019

Bert Szabo is one year older than the Summit Metro Parks park district, where he worked for more than three decades and where he continues to volunteer at 99 years old.

County paying Summit Metro Parks $50,000 after sewage spill

November 26, 2019

Summit County is expected to pay Summit Metro Parks $50,000 as part of an order from the Ohio Environmental Protection Agency after an estimated 6 million gallons of untreated sewage spilled into a park district conservation area last year.

Summit, Cuyahoga counties reach $260 million deal with drug companies in opioid case

October 21, 2019

Summit and Cuyahoga counties reached a tentative $260 million settlement with most of the defendants in the landmark opioid trial an hour before opening statements in the case were set to start in federal court.

Q&A: The landmark opioid trial explained

October 19, 2019

Here’s everything you need to know about the landmark opioid trial involving Summit County that’s scheduled to begin Monday, Oct. 21, 2019, in federal court in Cleveland.

Girl Scouts open STEM-inspired program center at Camp Ledgewood

October 10, 2019

Over the decades Julie Brandle spent at Camp Ledgewood — first as a 7-year-old Girl Scout, then as a camp counselor, then as a leader for her daughter’s troop — she never imagined she’d get to leave a permanent mark on the property.

But Brandle, president and co-founder of Metis Construction Services in Kent, helped create the Girl Scouts of North East Ohio’s Chickadee Program Center at Camp Ledgewood.

Summit County’s first facility for homeless female veterans opens

September 26, 2019

Tanzania Johnson, a single mother and U.S. Air Force veteran who has been staying with family members, will move with her 6-year-old daughter to Summit County’s first housing facility for homeless female veterans and their children, Summit Liberty House.

Former Summit official expected to continue working with county on $7,000 monthly retainer

September 18, 2019

A former Summit County official who left to take a job in the private sector last month is expected to continue his work with the county.

Summit County facing potential lawsuit over jail inmate’s death

August 27, 2019

The estate of a 35-year-old woman who died of dehydration while detoxifying at the Summit County Jail last year will sue the county and the jail’s former medical provider if a settlement can’t be reached.

Piece of tree where love took root saved for Akron couple

August 27, 2019

When Mike and Annie Gerard got engaged 30 years ago, Mike carved their initials in a tree. The tree recently fell in a storm, but thanks to some help from Summit Metro Parks, Mike and Annie now have the cherished section of the tree.

Engineer’s office considers options for Yellow Creek watershed

August 25, 2019

After spending months studying the Yellow Creek watershed, an engineering consulting firm has suggested several ideas to mitigate flooding, erosion and other stormwater issues in the watershed primarily located in Bath.

‘We’re in trouble': Peninsula could run out of cash by 2023

August 24, 2019

A quaint village nestled in the heart of Cuyahoga Valley National Park is going broke.

After 15 years, Twinsburg park stream restoration nearly done

August 10, 2019

After 15 years of work, Pond Brook will soon no longer be a straight, stagnant, unshaded ditch but a meandering stream supporting a variety of fish, birds and otters.

Woman and cat — both with few years to live — find home with each other

August 06, 2019

Rebecca was diagnosed with pulmonary fibrosis about a year ago, with a prognosis of about three to five years. Gummy Bear the cat has feline leukemia and had all her teeth removed because of abscesses and infections. The pair found a home with each other.

Summit Metro Parks digging at Mary Campbell Cave

July 29, 2019

Mary Campbell was definitely a young girl who lived in Pennsylvania in the mid-1700s. And she was definitely captured by Native Americans and returned to her family years later.

But her presence at a rock formation named after her in Gorge Metro Park along the boundary between Akron and Cuyahoga Falls isn’t so definite.

National park volunteer, 89, encourages helping others, giving back

July 22, 2019

An 89-year-old woman who volunteers in four positions at Cuyahoga Valley National Park encourages people to give back and help others.

After amputation, Stow police officer returns to work

July 17, 2019

After falling off the roof nearly two years ago, Joe Hepler has undergone 13 surgeries, including a below-the-knee amputation of his left leg. He recently returned to work as a patrol officer with the Stow Police Department.

After five years, missing Stow cat returns home

July 09, 2019

If you would have asked Lori Croghan before last week what happened to her Maine coon cat, Quill, who got out of her house five years ago, she would have been pretty sure of her answer. But against the odds — and the heavy traffic on nearby roads — Quill was found more than a mile away and came home.

Revere coaches replaced after drinking alcohol at football camp

June 25, 2019

The Revere school district removed its entire football coaching staff after the coaches admitted to drinking alcohol at an offseason football camp.

Part 3: Cuyahoga Falls embraces river through downtown

June 21, 2019

Over the decades of improvements to the river since the 1969 fire, including two dams in Cuyahoga Falls coming down in 2013, the city has embraced the river running through its downtown.

Part 2: How Akron is cleaning up the Cuyahoga River

June 20, 2019

Akron is in the midst of a massive $1.2 billion sewer project to stop untreated wastewater from overflowing into waterways, including the Cuyahoga River, the Little Cuyahoga and the Ohio & Erie Canal.

Part 1: Fifty years after fire, Cuyahoga River revival celebrated

June 19, 2019

Fifty years after the Cleveland fire that sparked a national environmental movement, the 100-mile Crooked River and its advocates are celebrating its restoration and looking ahead to even more revival.

Former FBI agent discusses hate going mainstream

May 29, 2019

After seeing a photo from the 1970 Kent State University shooting in middle school, Cynthia Deitle decided she wanted to work for the government to prevent something like that from happening again. Her decades specializing in police brutality and hate crimes, including 22 years as an FBI special agent, proved her wrong.

Local referees push for stronger penalties for assaults of sports officials

April 29, 2019

In his 42 years as a referee, Michael Porpora estimates he’s been assaulted by spectators about half a dozen times, from pushing and shoving to punching. He hopes bills in both chambers of the Ohio legislature that he and referee Andy Milligan helped get introduced will protect sports officials and compel parents and other spectators to act appropriately during games.

Mother says Chapel Hill Christian School kicked out kids because she’s unmarried, they have different fathers

April 18, 2019

An Akron mother says a Christian school in Cuyahoga Falls kicked out her two children because she’s not married and her kids have different fathers.

Gorge Dam might not be removed until 2023

April 09, 2019

It will be years before the Gorge Dam in the Gorge Metro Park is removed.

Community reaches out to children in need in Stow and Munroe Falls

April 08, 2019

Stow Munroe-Falls Superintendent Tom Bratten said over the last few years, the school district has seen between 12 and 24 students experiencing homelessness.

Akron will get 62 percent more to fix streets under state gas tax increase

April 03, 2019

Akron residents should see road conditions improve with a boost of more than $3.3 million from the state gas tax increase approved by Ohio lawmakers.

Stow preschoolers learn about world hunger, living on $2 a day

April 03, 2019

How do you get food to hungry children around the world? According to a group of 2- to 5-year-old kids at The Nest Early Learning Center, you could host an art show to raise money to buy food for them, or you could mail them yogurt, applesauce or a refrigerator full of ice cream.

Akron area’s first medical marijuana dispensary opening in Cuyahoga Falls

March 28, 2019

The first medical marijuana dispensary in the Akron area is opening in Cuyahoga Falls.

After losing spouses to cancer, two find love again

March 24, 2019

After Pam Matheny lost her husband of 51 years less than a year after he was diagnosed with an aggressive form of cancer, she never saw herself falling in love again. But then she met Ed Dietrich, who lost his wife of 37 years to breast cancer:

Do suburban residents pay attention to Akron? Depends who you ask

March 23, 2019

Beacon Journal/ reporters visited four Summit County communities  to talk with people in the suburbs about how they view Akron and the city’s role in the region.

Muslims, Jews discuss racism, hatred after New Zealand mosque shootings

March 19, 2019

For the last few years, the Islamic Society of Akron and Kent and Temple Israel have joined each other in monthly dialogues to learn about each other's faiths. After the shootings at two New Zealand mosques that left 50 worshipers dead, the two faith communities discussed racism, hatred and paths to change.

Michelle Obama shares life insights with Cleveland crowd

March 17, 2019

Michelle Obama is still becoming, and she thinks the country is still becoming, too.

Stow pastor decides to continue pushing, praying for change in Methodist church

March 08, 2019

When United Methodist Church in Stow Pastor Karen Drotar first heard the church’s General Conference voted to strengthen its bans on same-sex marriage and ordination of LGBTQ clergy, her first thought was to retire and leave the church.

As government shutdown continues, food bank provides food for more than 300 families

January 24, 2019

Akron mother of five Jeaneen Bradford appreciates any help she can get keeping her fridge full and her kids fed. But Bradford, who uses SNAP, doesn’t know what the future holds after she received her February benefits early as the partial government shutdown continues.

DeWine pledges to improve children’s lives in his first visit to Northeast Ohio as governor

January 17, 2019

In his first address to Northeast Ohio as governor, Mike DeWine’s priority was a familiar one: improving the lives of the state’s children.

Tents come down as Akron clears out homeless encampment

January 03, 2019

After two weeks in a homeless tent city off Broad Street, Krystal Emch and her boyfriend of six months, Michael Smith, are moving on to a new campground. But they’re not leaving because they want to. Emch, who said she’s been homeless since she was 13, is leaving with Smith and two dozen because the city shut down the tent village.

Family grateful to bring baby home from NICU in time for Christmas

December 24, 2018

Callista and Jason Puchmeyer received one of the best Christmas gifts possible this year: finally bringing home their newborn daughter, Vincenza, a month after she was born with a rare blood disease following her mom’s high-risk pregnancy.

Two vehicles damaged by falling debris from bridge; drivers question why overpass stayed open

December 20, 2018

Two separate drivers said debris fell from a bridge that was previously struck by a truck hauling a bulldozer and smashed their windshields while they were driving. They question if the bridge and interstate are safe to drive on and want to know why nothing was done between the two incidents.

Stow group wipes out $9,000 in school lunch debt in five days

December 17, 2018

A group from Stow-Munroe Falls planned to reduce the district’s $9,000 school lunch debt. They hoped to put a dent in it by Christmas. They raised enough money to completely wipe out the debt for 515 students in five days.

Angel Tree Ceremony honors Summit County violence victims

December 03, 2018

During an annual ceremony hosted by the Victim Assistance Program, 1,133 victims lost to violence in Summit County in the past 24 years were honored and remembered, including Anthony Norman Jr., who was shot and killed in a car while shielding his young daughter.

Stow family thankful to be alive after near-death experience last Thanksgiving

November 20, 2018

This year, Matt and Amy Knabe will celebrate their first Thanksgiving as parents with their 10-month-old daughter, Lennon. It’s a holiday the Stow couple almost didn’t see — they nearly died of carbon monoxide poisoning in their home last Thanksgiving.

Small group turns out for peaceful gun rights talk at KSU

November 19, 2018

About 40 people gathered for a discussion on gun rights hosted by Kent State’s viral “gun girl," Kaitlin Bennett — unlike a tense Sept. 29 open carry walk that attracted about 150 supporters, twice as many protesters and hundreds of police and other peacekeepers.

‘The whole town was basically on fire.’ Akron-area native loses home in wildfire

November 13, 2018

Akron-area native Katina Scalia had no idea when she woke up that everything she and her family owned in Magalia, California, would be reduced to ashes within hours.

Is there a War of 1812 boatyard in Akron? Archaeologists working to find out

November 09, 2018

Could there be a 19th-century boatyard used to build ships for the War of 1812 hidden in a former Akron golf course-turned-park? A crew of archaeologists is working to find out.

‘It’s just common sense’: Kids propose gun violence solutions at Akron town hall meeting

November 08, 2018

A 12-year-old boy and his 10-year-old brother were among a handful of people who gathered at the Vernon Odom Boulevard branch of the Akron-Summit County Public Library to propose possible solutions to Akron’s gun violence problem.

Akron vigil mourns 11 killed in Pittsburgh synagogue shooting

November 01, 2018

More than 500 people packed into the auditorium at the Schultz Campus for Jewish Life in Akron to mourn the loss of the 11 people shot and killed at a Pittsburgh synagogue.

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