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On The Lite Side

March 31, 1986

BOSSIER CITY, La. (AP) _ An elementary school principal will hit the roof because she challenged her students to read.

Sue Merritt dared 480 fifth and sixth grade students at Curtis Elementary School to read for 1 million minutes between Oct. 1, 1985, and April 30, 1986.

″We told them that if every student read 20 minutes every day, they would reach it,″ Ms. Merritt said.

She said she didn’t think they could do it.

But they did, by March 14.

Ms. Merritt is not angry about the results. She’s high on her students, but she’ll be even higher on April 18 when she’ll sit on the school roof from 8 a.m. to 2:30 p.m. She’ll be served lunch in a bucket hoisted by rope and will have a megaphone to communicate with the children.


PITTSBURGH (AP) - When William DelMonaco decides to get married, the sky’s the limit.

DelMonaco, 31, took girlfriend Pamela Caputo to the Mount Washington overlook Sunday on the pretense of admiring the view of sunny downtown Pittsburgh. What he really wanted her to see was an airplane towing a sign, ″Pam, I love you, will you marry me? Bill.″

″Pam, I’ve got to know. Will you?″ DelMonaco said as the plane flew by.

″Yes,″ she said.

As champagne flowed and the happy couple toasted each other with white plastic cups, DelMonaco said he wanted to do something special because ″Pam’s a special girl.″

The sign cost him $199, he said.

DelMonaco, an insurance salesman from suburban Coraopolis, met Miss Caputo about two years ago at the downtown branch bank office where she worked as a teller.

″I used to try to go to the bank as many times a day as I could,″ he said.

Miss Caputo said she has no special date in mind for the wedding, her first and DelMonaco’s second.

″Tomorrow’s fine with me,″ DelMonaco said.


NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) - Those who gathered at the Nashville Funeral Home wept tears of joy as they sat in pews marked ″Reserved Pallbearers″ and witnessed the marriage of Ruth Trammel to Alan Coffer.

Although the newlyweds admitted some of the 25 guests might have found the setting ghoulish, both said they were comfortable with the serene surroundings.

″I’ve been around here so much, it doesn’t bother me,″ the bride said at a reception in the funeral home basement following Saturday’s ceremony.

The new Mrs. Coffer, whose son Mike Porter is the funeral home’s owner, said her greatest concern was being nervous before her third trip down the aisle.

For W.W. Miles, minister of Fatherland Baptist Church, the ceremony was a homecoming of sorts. Miles said he felt at home in the chapel because the building used to be the site of his church.

″It feels like a church to me. I’ve preached a lot of sermons in here,″ Miles said.

Porter said he hopes the funeral home will become known for its marriage services.

″I feel like we’ll have more weddings. Young couples are looking for places to have weddings,″ Porter said.

The newlyweds will return to Vergennes, Ill., where they will reside on Coffer’s 889-acre cattle, corn and bean farm.

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