This week in history

This week in history

99 years ago in 1921

The handsome new store of the Walk-Over Boot Shop was to open to the public in Warren with a grand opening and reception. A cordial invitation to every man, woman and child in the city to visit the store located at No. 11 North Park Avenue was sent out from management.

Workmen had been busy for six weeks working on remodeling the interior of the store room and had completely transformed it. The entrance to the store was a work of artistic beauty and included two large vestibules to be used as show windows, furnished in panel effect with solid mahogany, inlaid with ivory and ebony. The woodwork was a marvel of skill and would serve as a model background and was to serve as a model background or the very fine stock of Walk-Over shoes for men and women, and a complete line of children’s footwear to be displayed there. The interior was finished with an ecru ceiling and cabinets and shelving of mahogany.

The firm, which included local people, was to carry a complete line of Walk-Over shoes for men and women and a complete line of children’s footwear.

Music was provided during the reception and souvenirs were to be presented to the guests.

70 years ago in 1950

A castoff suitor shot and killed a Warren woman and wounded her ex-husband, then took his own life at a West Market home.

The bloody shooting fracas interrupted the honeymoon plans of a newly wedded couple and followed a wedding reception at the home of Michael Bokan who was wounded. His daughter, Betty Jane, was married in the home and had planned to leave for her honeymoon.

The dead included Mrs. Helen Bokan, 38, who died at St. Joseph Hospital two hours after being shot in the head and Donald Leroy Snyder, 31, of Route 4 in Warren, who police said committed suicide by shooting himself in the right temple with a .38 caliber revolver after shooting the Bokans.

The shooting climaxed a threat by Snyder, who according to one of the Bokans’ three daughters, Margaret Ann, 20, vowed to kill Mrs. Bokan, a divorcee if she returned to her ex-husband.

Margaret said Snyder at one time had been her mother’s “boyfriend.”

The Bokans had been divorced but Mrs. Bokan had returned to her ex-husband’s home a week before the marriage of their daughter, Betty Jane.

Bokan was shot twice, once in the upper left abdomen and once in the left thigh as he grappled with Snyder, who attempted to force his way upstairs where Mrs. Bokan had taken refuge in her bedroom.

Mrs. Bokan was lying in a pool of blood at the head of the stairs on the floor of the second floor hallway. Snyder was slumped in a corner of the upstairs hallway.

25 years ago in 1995

News that two women whose loud praying disrupted several Pittsburgh-area church services had joined Queen of the Rosary Chapel had not rattled the prayer beads of parishioners.

“Yes, we knew that they were here,” said a woman parishioner as she left the 8 a.m. Mass at the church Sunday. “They’re welcome to come to our church. Our church is open to everyone.”

“I’ve read about it, but no one’s made a commotion here yet,” said another parishioner, Josephine Colecchi of Ravenna.

The women did not appear to be at the early service, before which the rosary was recited aloud by the entire congregation. However, a Youngstown television station reported the women did attend Mass earlier in the day. The church also held a 10 a.m. service.

The Pittsburgh Post-Gazette had reported that Joan Sudwoj and Cynthia Balconi had moved to Vienna in late spring and have been searching for a home to rent.

The two women were caught in the national spotlight after they were ordered by the courts to stay away from their home parish in Youngwood, Pa. They later were arrested for praying a rosary loudly at Blessed Sacrament Cathedral east of Pittsburgh.

The women had remained anonymous to the pastor and most of the parishioners, who shrugged and smiled when asked about the women: one man said he hoped they would continue to recite the rosary quietly.

“I don’t know whether they joined. I don’t even know what they look like. But I hope they don’t start that here,” he said.

Maryann Bower of Vienna said the women were welcome.

“Anybody’s welcome here. It’s God’s church,” she said.

10 years ago in 2010

Youngstown State University’s new president ,Cynthia Anderson, reminded the campus community that YSU students ranked “second to none across this country.”

Hundreds of campus and community members, including YSU faculty, staff and students, turned out to support Anderson during a welcoming celebration to mark her first official day on the job. Pete the Penguin, the YSU band and cheerleaders were on hand as well.

Anderson, 59, YSU’s former vice president of Student Affairs, became the university’s seventh president and the school’s first female chief.

Anderson made a few remarks outside Tod Hall, the YSU administration building, before going inside for a reception in her honor, where she greeted dozens of supporters who lined up to congratulate her.

“Everything we do now takes us to 2010. Student success and excellence. We want those words to be so much more than words. They need to become actions,” she said.

In addition to being the first female president, Anderson was also the first Youngstown-area native and first YSU graduate to serve as president in the school’s 102-year history.

Anderson succeeded Dr. David Sweet, who retired after 10 years at the post.

— Compiled from the archives of the Tribune

Chronicle by

Emily Earnhart


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