Elk County camp destroyed by fire….Tioga County teen arrested for assaulting adult….several ID thefts investigated….Bears found to be carriers of lyme-disease ticks…Health Department updates region’s Covid cases…… https://soundcloud.com/gerri-miller-611294886/black-forest-broadcasting-podcast-december-17-2021

Thursday’s high, 60; Overnight low, 35







Elk County

An accidental fire destroyed a  30 x 20 foot camp and its contents in Spring Creek Township December 5.. The camp, on Park Lance Lane was owned by John Anderson of Ridgway. Damage is  estimated to be $90,000.

An elderly Maryland couple escaped injury in a one-car accident Wednesday night. According to Ridgway state police, 78 year old Betty Rice of Baltimore was going East on Route 949 when her Toyota Highlander went off the road and traveled 150 feet after colliding with an embankment. The SUV stopped after hit a concrete culvert. The driver and her 78 year old husband, were using seatbelts and were not hurt.

State police at Ridgway have cited a Kersey driver for following too closely after a rear-end collision Wednesday afternoon on the Boot Jack Road in Ridgway Township. Crystal Park failed to notice Katy Kucenski of Ridgway had slowed down for a turning vehicle and allowed her GMC Terrain to run into the back of Kucenski’s Chevy Cruze. Both drivers escaped injury.

Authorities   have investigated a couple more ID thefts. Someone used the ID of a 48 year old Ridgway man Wednesday to illegally obtain $386 in unemployment compensation.

Troopers  at Emporium are investigating an ID theft taking place Wednesday afternoon . Someone  illegally used the Social Security number of a 46 year old Emporium woman.

Cyber thieves illegally opened a bank account using ID information belonging to a 60 year old Emporium woman Monday afternoon.

The identity of a 48 year old Emporium woman was used in an unemployment scam Monday afternoon.

The theft of a garbage can on the Sizerville Road in Shippen Township Cameron County Monday is being probed by state police at Emporium. The plastic receptacle is valued at $25 and belonged to a 74 year old Emporium woman.

Tioga County

A Tioga County teenager has been charged for physical harassment in connection to an incident allegedly taking place Monday morning  on North Main Street in Tioga Township. Mansfield based state police allege the 17 year old boy made threatening remarks and gestures toward a 52 year old Tioga man

McKean County

Troopers at Lewis Run have investigated a couple of recent tangible thefts. Some scrap metal belonging to a 79 year old Saline, MI man was taken from the Windfall Road in Eldred Township between December 5 and 15. Police also checked out a theft on Looker Mountain Train occurring last Saturday. Authorities did not indicate what was stolen.

Drug possession  charges have been filed against 21 year old Anastasia a Kenyon of Port Allegany. Troopers claim when they stopped her 2003 Toyota Rav4 on Route 59 in Keating Township Tuesday morning, they found her in possession of methamphetamine and related drug paraphernalia.


The state Health Department has updated the number of confirmed Covid cases in the Black Forest Broadcasting Service area.









The spread of the blacklegged tick, the primary vector for the pathogen that causes Lyme disease, may be facilitated in Pennsylvania by animals that people rarely associate with it — black bears, according to researchers in Penn State’s College of Agricultural Sciences.

In a recently published study, the researchers reported on the presence, abundance and spatial distribution of ticks on black bears, with an eye toward better understanding the bears’ role in tick ecology and dispersal and improving on-host surveillance techniques for ticks.

American black bear populations in the Northeast have been rising substantially since the 1980s. Pennsylvania has seen a dramatic increase in bear numbers, with the estimated population doubling between the late 1980s and 2001 and continuing to rise in the last 20 years.

During roughly the same time frame tick-borne diseases in humans have risen significantly, with the number of cases reported to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention nearly tripling between 2004 and 2017. Lyme disease, which is caused by the bacterium Borrelia burgdorferi and is transmitted primarily by the blacklegged tick (Ixodes scapularis), is the most frequently reported vector-borne disease in the United States. Pennsylvania leads the nation in reported Lyme cases.

Black bears are known to host several species of ticks and can travel long distances — particularly male bears that may travel more than 100 miles when establishing a new territory . Researchers say  it’s important to understand their role in tick ecology and dispersal, especially in a region with high numbers of Lyme disease cases.

To assess tick presence, abundance, life stage, spatial distribution and seasonality, the research team examined 278 black bears in 21 central Pennsylvania counties — from the New York border to the Maryland line — between June 2018 and December 2019.

Researchers evaluated live, sedated black bears in cooperation with annual bear population research surveys conducted by the Pennsylvania Game Commission during the spring and summer months, as well as hunter-harvested bears brought to Game Commission check stations during the annual statewide bear-hunting season.

The researchers reported that the highest numbers of ticks found on bears occurred in the spring, with the next highest abundance occurring in the summer, and the lowest abundance found in the fall. “This likely relates to the blacklegged tick’s life cycle in the Northeast, with nymphs most active and abundant in the spring, larvae in the summer, and adults in the fall.

The research suggests that black bears may be an important factor in tick dispersal in Pennsylvania.


Zelma M. LEHMAN, 55, of Ulysses, PA, died Wednesday, December 15, 2021 in her home.  Born February 12, 1966, in Port Allegany, she was the daughter of Elwyn and Edna Tucker Eaton.  On June 6, 1998, in Ulysses, she married Stephen W. Lehman, who survives.  A graduate of Port Allegany High School, she was employed Sweden Valley Manor, Masterclean, Wagner’s Hardware, and Northern Potter School District.  Zelma was a member of Ulysses Area Improvement Association.  Surviving besides her husband, Steve, are:  five children, Amanda (Derek Phillips) Lehman of Pittsburgh, Jason (Heather) Klawuhn of Great Lakes, MN, Pamela (Brian) Liberatore of Canonsburg, Wallace (Kacy French) Eaton of Olean, NY, and Melissa Lehman of Pittsburgh;  five grandchildren, Alex, Nick, Brooklynn, Mason, and Rylee;  a sister, Millie (John) Dailey of Shinglehouse;  a brother, Raymond (Debbie) Eaton of Port Allegany;  nieces and nephews.  She was predeceased by her parents.  Friends may call at Olney-Foust Funeral Homes & Crematory, Ulysses, PA on Sunday, December 19, 2021 from 2:00 – 4:00 PM, with Funeral Services following at 4:00 PM.  Rev. Marty Zdrojewski will officiate.  Burial will be in Ulysses Cemetery.  Memorials may be made to Lustgarten Foundation Pancreatic Cancer Research at www.lustgarten.org.  Online condolences may be expressed at www.olneyfoust.com.