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Local news briefs — Oct. 12


Man dies in crash

AKRON: A Cuyahoga Falls man was killed in a one-vehicle crash early Friday morning on Coventry Street in Akron, authorities said.

Mark E. Luster, 52, of Archdale Avenue, was driving a 2003 Dodge Durango north at 2:15 a.m. when he apparently went through a stop sign at LaFollette Street and struck a concrete retaining wall.

He was taken to Summa Akron City Hospital, where he later died from his injuries.

The Summit County Medical Examiner’s Office and Akron police were investigating the incident.

Car strikes home

AKRON: A routine traffic stop turned into a police chase that ended when a fleeing driver crashed into a home.

Authorities said police attempted to pull over a 2003 Nissan Altima at Euclid Avenue and East Avenue around 12:30 a.m. Friday.

As officers approached the car, the driver drove off and fled west on Euclid Avenue.

The driver lost control of the vehicle and crashed into the side of a house in the 1000 block of Diagonal Road. There were no reports of injuries.

Deontrey A. Simmons, 37, of South College Street, Barberton, was charged with willful fleeing and having an open container in a motor vehicle.

Next of kin sought

AKRON: Authorities were trying to locate the family of an Akron woman who died this month of natural causes.

Debra L. Gibbens, 52, was found dead inside her Diagonal Road apartment by her boyfriend Oct. 5. The Summit County Medical Examiner’s Office said Gibbens had a history of medical issues that contributed to her death.

Since her death, no family members have come forward to claim her body, investigator Gary Guenther said.

He said Gibbens may have had two adult sons, both of whom were last known to be living in Colorado.

Gibbens had previously lived on Wyley Street in Akron and Sweitzer Road in Green.

Anyone with information is asked to call the medical examiner’s office at 330-643-2101.

Trash collection

AKRON: Akron’s trash and recycling schedule will not be interrupted because of Columbus Day on Monday.

Collections will proceed normally all week, city officials said.

City wins awards

AKRON: Akron received two awards this week from the International Economic Development Council.

The city won the gold award for a Special Purpose Website for communities with 25,000 to 200,000 people for a website,, focused on the biomedical corridor.

Akron also received a silver award for Real Estate Redevelopment and Reuse for the Goodyear Tire & Rubber Co. headquarters project.

Deputy Mayor of Economic Development Bob Bowman and Development Manager Adele Roth accepted the awards in a ceremony in Philadelphia.

The International Economic Development Council is a nonprofit organization serving economic developers that has 4,000 members.


Road project

BATH TWP.: Motorists using the township’s main north-south artery — Cleveland-Massillon Road —will need to get ready for some traffic inconvenience.

Starting Monday, about 2.4 miles of that roadway — from 200 feet north of the intersection of Ghent and Cleveland-Massillon roads to Ira Road — are scheduled to be resurfaced, township Administrator Vito Sinopoli said.

The contractor, Shelly Co. of Twinsburg, will mill the existing pavement, making repairs as needed, then apply the asphalt, curbing ramps and new pavement markings.

Traffic will be maintained during the construction work, with a seven-day notice of any expected lane closures. Power equipment work in the residential areas is limited to the hours between 9 a.m. and 6 p.m.

Completion date for the project, costing more than $1 million, is Nov. 15.


Meet candidates

NORTH CANTON: The North Canton Republican Committee will host a Meet the Candidates Night from 5 to 7 p.m. Thursday at the Dogwood Park shelter on Seventh Street Northeast.

Area candidates will give brief remarks and be available for questions.

This event is open to the public, and refreshments will be provided.

For more information, call 330-453-6708 or email


Kent receives honor

KENT: The city received a Silver Excellence in Economic Development Award from the International Economic Development Council (IEDC.)

The honor, presented at a ceremony in Philadelphia this week, was in the category of Public-Private Partnerships for communities with populations of 25,000-200,000 and recognized the city’s downtown renovation.

Kent is “one of the leading organizations in the industry for innovation, creativity and successful strategies,” said IEDC chair, Paul Krutko. “These awards are meant to honor the organizations and individuals who are dedicated to making a positive change in their communities.”

Kent and its development partners combined to create a $110 million revitalization project that covered three city blocks and included 250,000 square feet of new mixed use space, a new hotel and conference center and an esplanade connecting Kent State University to downtown.


Crash kills driver

SUFFIELD TOWNSHIP: An Akron man was killed during a collision with a tractor-trailer early Friday in Suffield Township.

Edward P. Shuber, 86, was pronounced dead at the scene of the crash on state Route 43 near Randolph Road.

Ohio State Highway Patrol said a northbound tractor-trailer struck Shuber’s 2009 Mercury Sable about 7 a.m. as it pulled out of a driveway. The truck then struck a utility pole.

The truck driver, 41, of Green, was not injured. The crash remained under investigation.


Recognition dinner

CANTON: The Stark County Prosecutor’s Office will host its 38th annual Volunteer Recognition Dinner at 6 p.m. Oct. 24 at the Executive Event Center, 5211 Tuscarawas St. W.

This event, which is hosted in association with the Stark County Victims’ Rights Coalition, will feature a special guest speaker who will discuss her victimization and survival.

Volunteers who have helped crime victims recover and individuals who have participated in neighborhood and community crime prevention programs will be recognized. The victims’ rights coalition also will present six special awards.

Tickets are $25 each, and the deadline for reservations is Oct. 21.

For more information, call 330-451-7452.


Nature center open

AKRON: The Seiberling Nature Realm will be open for visitors from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday, Columbus Day.

The nature center, operated by Metro Parks, Serving Summit County at 1828 Smith Road, normally is closed on Mondays.

The park’s administrative offices at 975 Treaty Line Road also will be open on the federal holiday.

For more information, call 330-865-8065.

Society meeting

AKRON: The Scottish American Society will meet from 3 to 5 p.m. Sunday in the meeting room at Akron-Summit County Public Library, 60 S. High St.

Featured speaker will be John Whitacre, who will present A History of Men’s Hats.

The talk is free to the public. Free parking is available in the adjacent garage.

Grants presented

Dayton-based CareSource Foundation awarded 28 grants in Ohio totaling $215,000.

The foundation provides grants to organizations in health and human services domains with a focus on children’s health, issues of senior adults, community health issues, special needs populations and strategies to address the medically uninsured throughout the state.

Recipients included two Akron groups:

• Community Health Center received a $5,000 grant to provide comprehensive prevention education, treatment and housing services for those with addictive/compulsive disorders.

• Pregnancy Care of Summit County received a $5,000 grant to support education, health services and case management services for young, low-income mothers.


Tuition loan fraud

WADSWORTH: A Columbus State Community College student may have found a new way to pay for higher education.

A Ledgestone Drive man reported to police Wednesday that someone stole his identity and used it to apply for a student loan.

The man told police he received a call from a creditor looking for payment of a $4,000 loan used to pay for several classes at the college.

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