City / County Digest


October 15, 2007

Allegany County : Cumberland

LaVale couple among dead in plane crash

Authorities in Mineral County, W.Va., say four people, including a couple from LaVale, Md., were killed when their aircraft crashed after taking off from Greater Cumberland Regional Airport.

Airport manager Terry Malone says the plane was headed to Atlantic City, N.J., about 8:30 a.m. yesterday when it crashed into a barn four miles from the airport. The crash was not discovered until the afternoon, he said.

The Mineral County Sheriff's Office identified the deceased as pilot Earl Wilson Jr. and his wife, Sharon, of Fort Ashby, W.Va., and Gary and Carol Athey of LaVale, which is near Cumberland.

A National Transportation Safety Board investigator plans to meet with local officials today at the crash site.

Associated Press

Frederick County

: Frederick

4 charged in theft of city sculpture

Frederick police say two of the city's "Keys to Frederick" sculptures were stolen and that four men have been charged in one of the thefts.

Witnesses told police the men smiled at them as they took a 6-foot fiberglass key decorated with the American flag early yesterday from North Market Street, then loaded it on a truck.

Police later found the key and the four men at the home of the truck's owner. The men were charged with theft greater than $500 and conspiracy to commit theft greater than $500.

A key decorated with a Maryland flag was stolen yesterday from South Market Street, but police do not believe the thefts are related.

The 30 key-shaped sculptures displayed around the city will be auctioned next month to benefit the Frederick Arts Council.

Associated Press


: Silver Spring

Sale of art `trash' nets cash for church

A church whose members stumbled onto a valuable oil painting while cleaning out an old farmhouse in 1973 has sold the work for $90,000, about three times more than current members had hoped.

When Christ Congregational Church found the painting, an 1870 landscape of a Maine mountain by Virgil Macey Williams, members thought the dust-covered painting was trash. Church member Mary Ann Peterson held onto the painting, keeping it under a couch, until her husband got curious and contacted the Smithsonian Institution.

The buyer of View of Mt. Katahdin From the West Bank of the Penobscot River, who was not identified, plans to donate the painting to Colby College Museum of Art in Maine, The Washington Post reported.

After the auction house commission, the church will receive $82,800 that it plans to use to restore the farmhouse for use as a retreat and summer camp.

Associated Press


: Notre Dame

Information session scheduled Oct. 23

An information session on the College of Notre Dame's Accelerated College and Weekend College is planned for 6 p.m. Oct. 23 in Fourier Hall, 4701 N. Charles St. For more information or to make a reservation for the session, call 410-532-5500 or go to

Wicomico County

: Fruitland

New city hall planned for fast-growing town

Fruitland is one of the fastest-growing communities in Wicomico County, and officials there are planning a new city hall to keep up with that growth.

The U.S. Census estimates the city grew by about 12 percent, to more than 4,100 people, since 2000 and a dozen new developments are under construction or in the pipeline.

The city now has nine city workers and 19 Police Department employees working in the 20-year-old, 5,000-square-foot city hall. Officials plan to raze the building to make way for a new two-story, 16,000-square- foot city hall.

The city considered a new city hall elsewhere, but City Manager John McDonnell says the location at the corner of Main and Division streets is convenient for residents and shouldn't be changed.

Associated Press

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