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Laurels & (no) lances: Plans, jobs, pugs and pink

October 6, 2018

Pam Mikica of Apollo shows off Hope, a rescue pug from Guardian Angels Pug Rescue at Pugfest Saturday, Sept. 29, 2018.

Laurel: To Cheswick’s zoning hearing board. A move by board officials on Wednesday essentially moves forward plans for an O’Reilly Auto Parts store. Officials determined a parking variance is not required for the proposed store, which would be located at 1112 Pittsburgh St.

That’s good news not just for the store but for Cheswick, which would rid itself of a vacant property. It’s hard to make an argument that a new business would be damaging to the borough.

Laurel: To the employees of Charley’s Philly Steaks at Pittsburgh Mills. All of them. Kudos to Chris Gott for getting a job and making his own money, something that’s hard enough for anyone to do sometimes. But here’s an ovation for the people who helped make that possible, the ones already working at the restaurant, the people who have known Gott for years as a customer.

They rallied around the 30-year-old who lives with autism. When they found out they could hire someone to hand out samples, they immediately thought of Gott. They showed that anybody can stand on their own but nobody should have to stand alone. That’s a lesson that nourishes body and soul.

Laurel: To Patti Levay of Latrobe, founder of Guardian Angels Pug Rescue. She started saving the smoosh-faced pups three decades ago and has helped rescue and find homes for hundreds of the small dogs ever since. On Saturday, the organization hosted the annual Pugfest event bringing the big-eyed pets and the people who love them together to raise money and keep the rescue going. Here’s to a woman whose heart is truly in the work.

Laurel: To the Westmoreland Hospital Auxiliary and the Greensburg Art Center, which are giving a laudable example of successful collaboration with the ongoing “Comfort and Hope Exhibit” in the Excela Westmoreland Hospital’s hospitality shop.

In observation of October’s designation as Breast Cancer Awareness Month, the two organizations held a “Pink the Shop” open house event on Sept. 26 to introduce the month-long exhibit. Auxiliary members turned the hospital lobby’s gift shop into an explosion of pink, from food to décor to merchandise, and art center members and instructor artists donated art work for raffle or sale.

All proceeds will benefit Excela’s cancer care efforts, a hospital spokeswoman said. According to auxiliary volunteer member Sally Ann Novak, the women of the auxiliary, who run the gift shop, wanted to show support for other women and reinforce the auxiliary’s purpose of benefiting patients.

Residents are encouraged to browse the exhibit. They can add a pink ribbon to a tree in memory or honor of a loved one, and purchase chances on or buy paintings and note cards and other items to support the effort throughout October.

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