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Newsmaker: Richard Gazarik

Renatta Signorini
| Saturday, Sept. 30, 2017, 6:06 p.m.
Tribune-Review reporter Rich Gazarik has published 'Black Valley: The Life and Death of Fannie Sellins,' the story of a United Mine Workers of America organizers who was gunned down in August 1919 on the eve of the nationwide steel strike that engulfed Southwestern Pa. in labor violence. Gazarik spent nine years researching and writing the 137-page book. A book signing will be held Sunday at Alle-Kiski Valley Historical Museum.
(Barry Reeger | Tribune-Review)
BLR Fannie1210 1.jpg
story intended for publication December 10, 2011.
(Barry Reeger | Tribune-Review)
Tribune-Review reporter Rich Gazarik has published 'Black Valley: The Life and Death of Fannie Sellins,' the story of a United Mine Workers of America organizers who was gunned down in August 1919 on the eve of the nationwide steel strike that engulfed Southwestern Pa. in labor violence. Gazarik spent nine years researching and writing the 137-page book. A book signing will be held Sunday at Alle-Kiski Valley Historical Museum. (Barry Reeger | Tribune-Review) BLR Fannie1210 1.jpg story intended for publication December 10, 2011.

Noteworthy: Gazarik's second book “Prohibition Pittsburgh,” about the murder and mayhem surrounding a tumultuous era in the city and region, will be available for purchase Monday from The History Press . In the book, Gazarik details the illegal production of spirits and the wave of crime that followed it.

History appeals to Gazarik, who spent most days writing, visiting sites relevant to his book or poring over historical archives at the West Overton Distillery Museum and Pittsburgh universities, libraries and museums. He has been working on the prohibition book for the past year.

“I try to read everything I can about the subject I'm going to write about,” he said.

The book is available for preorder on Amazon and will be sold in area bookstores and Barnes & Noble.

Age: 68

Residence: Greensburg

Family: Wife, Lucy; son, Adam and daughter-in-law, Kellie; daughter, Katie

Education: Graduate of West Virginia University in 1972 with a bachelor's degree in journalism.

Occupation: Retired reporter for the Tribune-Review

Book plans: Gazarik's first book, “Black Valley: The Life and Death of Fannie Sellins,” was published in 2011 by the St. Vincent College Center for Northern Appalachian Studies about the labor activist who was killed in Natrona during an August 1919 mine strike.

Gazarik's third book, “Wicked Pittsburgh,” details the city's history of corruption. It is set for release in the spring.

His fourth book is a biography of the Rev. James Cox who, as pastor of Old St. Patrick's Church in the Strip District, organized a food distribution program during the Great Depression and later ran for president of the United States. That book is set for release in 2019.

A fifth book is being considered by two publishers, and Gazarik said he has ideas for three more.

Quote: “I haven't been able to turn off my journalistic curiosity. It's an extension of my life in journalism. I'm not one to sit around.”

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