Some notes from a small-town editor trying to help build a big-time paper:
The response we get when we publish stories about animals is incredible.
Twice in 10 days, we carried a story about a dog, Remmy, who some thought was being abused by its owners.
The Central Pennsylvania Humane Society and Altoona police promptly looked into the case and determined the dog had not been abused.
That didn't stop our phones from ringing off the hook, from all parts of the country, to express outrage at the alleged treatment of Remmy. More than 200 comments were unleashed on altoona
mirror.com as well.
Worse, the family accused of mistreating Remmy was dealing with the loss of their home to a fire only days earlier.
The family has since willingly relinquished the dog to an animal rescue group.
Amazingly, this level of venom isn't expressed at people over child abuse.
What's that say about the priorities of some activists?
It's understandable that authorities delay confirmation of the dead pending the next of kin.
But shouldn't they work with families to issue a report before obituaries are printed? That was the case recently in the tragic Rothrock State Forest cabin fire that claimed four members of the Stitely family of Huntingdon.
Susan Stitely, who died along with her husband and two daughters, published a book, "Mystic Vows," a romance novel, in 2007.
Did you notice the short item recently in which two DuBois motorcyclists, driver William Rusonis and his wife, Debra, were seriously injured after the motorcycle they were riding hit a deer on Route 153 in Clearfield County on July 16?
The police report said the driver was not cited. Neither, apparently, was the deer.
Motorcyclists say a deer darting from the woods is among their greatest fears. Thankfully, the DuBois couple has been released from Altoona Regional Health System.
Facebook users are invited to "like" the Mirror, via altoona
mirror.com, as we provide brief headlines during the day of breaking news items.
I'm not sure I knew a bigger Notre Dame fan than Ed Smithe, who passed away last week at age 81. When Penn State and the Irish were playing regularly in the 1980s and early '90s, Smithe hosted a gathering and included me at an exclusive restaurant in South Bend.
At the final home game scheduled between the teams during that series, he got up and said how much the series had meant to him and made a toast to football and friendship.
Those present were fortunate to be in his company.
Mirror Managing Editor Neil Rudel can be reached at 946-7527 or firstname.lastname@example.org.