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Boudreaux.jpgThe attorneys and staff of Michael J. O’Connor & Associates had their pick of the litter last week when they announced that Jill Strunk of Pottsville and her Saint Bernard puppy, Boudreaux, were the winners of the “Cutest Pet Contest.” The content began in March when clients were asked to send a picture of their pets to the O’Connor Facebook page (www.facebook.com/mjoclaw). Pictures were posted on the Facebook page through May 1 and the picture of the pet that received the most “Likes” was named the winner. The prize was a brand new iPod Shuffle 2GB, an easy-to-use portable device for storing hundreds of songs.

Congratulations to Jill and Boudreaux! Who said you can’t teach an old dog new tricks?

This Friday (April 19), remember to wear blue and green in honor of the second annual National Donate Life Blue and Green Day in support of organ and tissue donation and in celebration of National Donate Life Month.

Donate Life America is a non-profit alliance of national organizations across the U.S. with a mission to increase the number of designated organ, eye, and tissue donors in order to save and heal lives. They are encouraging the public to wear blue and green on this day, to bring attention to the need for organ and tissue donors.

According to DonorRecovery.org, more than 117,000 people are on organ transplant lists.

On Saturday, April 13, staff from Michael J. O’Connor & Associates laced up their running shoes to participate in the first ever Yuengling Light Lager Jogger 5K run/walk in Pottsville. Sponsored by America’s oldest brewery, Yuengling, the run/walk attracted 2,500 participants as well as hundreds of spectators. But it wasn’t just a chance to run or walk the race route — part of the proceeds from the participant registrations were donated to Operation Gratitude, an organization that sends care packages with snacks, entertainment items, and personal letters of appreciation addressed to individually named U.S service members deployed in hostile regions, as well as their children left behind, and to Wounded Warriors, veterans, and first responders. After the race, letter writing stations were set up so participants and spectators could write notes to be included in the care packages. It was a great community event that we were proud to take part in!
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Pictured above from left to right: Mary Jo Link, Lorianne Link, Kathy Wagner, Bridget Burke, and Peggy Kellar
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Pictured above from left to right: Samantha Cody, Kathy Wagner, Lorianne Link, and Bridget Burke

Funding is still available for the Low Income Home Energy Assistance Program (LIHEAP), so the federal program’s deadline has been extended to April 26.

According to an article on the RepublicanHerald.com, LIHEAP provides financial assistance each year to low-income Pennsylvania families that meet its criteria. Families can use those funds to pay heating bills through a crisis exception program and a regular crisis program.

According to the Department of Public Welfare, the crisis exception program provides money if a heat source has been shut off or if a household is almost out of fuel. The regular crisis program provides funds in an emergency situation, such as lack of fuel, termination of utility service, danger of being without fuel and having a less than 15-day supply, having utility service being shut off within a 60-day time frame, and broken heating equipment or leaking lines.

We’ve been hearing reports of Schuylkill County residents receiving calls from scam artists pretending to be employees of their local electric utility provider. In some cases, the caller is asking for personal information, account information, and money. In other cases, the caller is threatening to have electric service to a home shut off if an additional payment is not made immediately.

According to PPL Electric’s January newsletter, don’t be fooled by these scammers. If you have a question about someone who called you claiming to represent PPL or any other utility provider, call PPL or the utility provider to verify what you are being called about. If things don’t check out, call your local police department.

PPL advises that although someone representing their company could come to your door, most visits to customers are scheduled ahead of time, so you know when they will be coming to your home. If someone claims to be from PPL and comes to your door, they recommend you follow these safety tips:

It’s become a tradition for the staff and attorneys of Michael J. O’Connor & Associates to celebrate Día de los Reyes Magos, or Three Kings Day, with the Hispanic community in Reading, and this year was no exception.

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Three Kings Day is one of the most celebrated Hispanic holidays, especially in Puerto Rico and Mexico. It takes place on Jan. 6, also known as the Epiphany. It commemorates the day when the Three Wise Men followed the star to Bethlehem, bringing gifts of gold, frankincense, and myrrh to baby Jesus in the manger.

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This year’s Three Kings Day was held on Monday, January 7th at the Casa de la Amistad senior center in the Centro Hispano Daniel Torres in Reading. The celebration brought together children from the YMCA of Reading as well as seniors from the center.