East McKeesport police officer commended for actions in fire
By Michael DiVittorio
Published: Friday, Sept. 13, 2013, 3:36 a.m.
East McKeesport officials honored a borough police officer on Thursday for his actions during a fire last month.
Mayor Robert Howard and council president Kathleen Lipesky presented officer Eric Hess with a letter of commendation.
Hess responded to a fire on Aug. 17 around 1:30 a.m. at 640 Pittsburgh St.
Upon his arrival he found the homeowner, Thomas Blotzer, on the roof of his porch, holding his dog.
“Mr. Blotzer was not able to exit the house due to the severe smoke condition inside the house,” Howard explained during the council meeting. “Officer Hess was able to get both Mr. Blotzer and his dog off the roof and to safety.”
Blotzer was evaluated by medical personnel at the scene. Hess put the dog in his police vehicle and continued to investigate the fire. No injuries were reported.
“This young man is a great animal lover,” Lipesky said. “And that helps when there's a dog caught in a fire. He also is very good to everyone he sees. He's someone we're proud of because he's helpful and gentle and yet in charge all at the same time. We really appreciate this police officer.”
Hess thanked borough officials for the recognition.
Councilors accepted the resignation of part-time patrolman Josh Byers.
Howard said Byers served the borough for more than a year and is taking a job in another municipality.
Council ratified hiring part-time officers Mike Sharp of Whitehall and Andrew Tantanella of Turtle Creek. The mayor and councilors were involved in the hiring process. The recently acquired officers have been on the force for a little more than a month.
“They're going to help fill our schedule to where we have two police officers on all shifts because we take care of the boroughs of Wall and East McKeesport,” Howard said. “They're learning and following directions.”
The resignation and hirings bring the department to three full-time and eight part-time officers.
Council authorized Glenn Engineering to advertise for a new garbage contract. The current contract with Waste Management expires at the end of the year.
Officials said a pancake breakfast benefiting United Volunteer Fire and Rescue is scheduled for Sunday from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. at the Senior Citizen Community Center, 539 Chicora St. Cost is $7 a plate for adults, $4 for youth, and children ages 3 and younger eat for free. Price includes all-you-can-eat pancakes, a beverage and dessert.
Michael DiVittorio is a staff writer for Trib Total Media. He can be reached at 412-664-9161, ext. 1965, or firstname.lastname@example.org.
Show commenting policy
TribLive commenting policy
You are solely responsible for your comments and by using TribLive.com you agree to our Terms of Service.
We moderate comments. Our goal is to provide substantive commentary for a general readership. By screening submissions, we provide a space where readers can share intelligent and informed commentary that enhances the quality of our news and information.
While most comments will be posted if they are on-topic and not abusive, moderating decisions are subjective. We will make them as carefully and consistently as we can. Because of the volume of reader comments, we cannot review individual moderation decisions with readers.
We value thoughtful comments representing a range of views that make their point quickly and politely. We make an effort to protect discussions from repeated comments either by the same reader or different readers.
We follow the same standards for taste as the daily newspaper. A few things we won't tolerate: personal attacks, obscenity, vulgarity, profanity (including expletives and letters followed by dashes), commercial promotion, impersonations, incoherence, proselytizing and SHOUTING. Don't include URLs to Web sites.
We do not edit comments. They are either approved or deleted. We reserve the right to edit a comment that is quoted or excerpted in an article. In this case, we may fix spelling and punctuation.
We welcome strong opinions and criticism of our work, but we don't want comments to become bogged down with discussions of our policies and we will moderate accordingly.
We appreciate it when readers and people quoted in articles or blog posts point out errors of fact or emphasis and will investigate all assertions. But these suggestions should be sent via e-mail. To avoid distracting other readers, we won't publish comments that suggest a correction. Instead, corrections will be made in a blog post or in an article.
- McKeesport man wanted in shooting nabbed in Elizabeth Township
- Oakmont father-son team’s efforts help add Mon Valley names to police memorial
- McKeesport crews prep for new KaBOOM! playground
- Markosek supports McCord for governor
- Crews fill Duquesne sinkhole
- Serra Catholic High School friary to house foreign students
- McKeesport student to celebrate Jackie Robinson’s legacy
- Munhall dispatch to switch to county 911 by end of May
- Officials in North Versailles fed up with littering
- 5 Operation Pork Chop defendants sentenced to 5 years probation
- West Mifflin mayor seeks to use county airport ‘to its fullest potential’