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Newsmaker: David McCleary

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'American Coyotes' Series

Traveling by Jeep, boat and foot, Tribune-Review investigative reporter Carl Prine and photojournalist Justin Merriman covered nearly 2,000 miles over two months along the border with Mexico to report on coyotes — the human traffickers who bring illegal immigrants into the United States. Most are Americans working for money and/or drugs. This series reports how their operations have a major impact on life for residents and the environment along the border — and beyond.

Tuesday, Aug. 27, 2013, 8:56 p.m.
 

David McCleary

Residence: New Alexandria

Age: 49

Family: Wife, Kelly

Education: Greater Latrobe graduate, 1981; bachelor's degree in special education from Indiana University of Pennsylvania, 1985; master's equivalency in education

Background: As a teacher in Derry Area School District for 26 years, McCleary worked with a program through his church, Latrobe United Presbyterian, to send books to schools in West Virginia, beginning about four years ago. He helped to start the KIND (Kids In Need in Derry) program, which subsidizes year-round closets — stocked with clothing and school supplies — at both the high school and the middle school. He is a past president of the Derry Area Education Association.

Noteworthy: Nominated by Derry Area High School principal Kathy Perry, McCleary was honored with a 2013 Education Hero Award from the Southwestern Pennsylvania Chapter of the American Red Cross for his work with the KIND closet and other service projects.

Quote: “Maybe I get a little more credit than I deserve because I had the idea, but the idea is the easy part. Nothing gets done by an individual. ... They're all group efforts. We're a rural district; we cover 109 square miles, but the focus is usually our schools. ... It's nice for us to be able to give something back.”

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