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Send news of everyday life in our county, whether it's snapshots from family reunions, a local achievement, celebrations or simply good news you want to trumpet. To make a submission, contact Hometown Pinellas coordinator Malena Carollo at firstname.lastname@example.org (put Hometown Pinellas in subject line), by fax at (727) 893-8675 or by mail to Tampa Bay Times, Hometown Pinellas, P.O. Box 1121, St. Petersburg, FL 33731.
Homeless shelter helped by Eagle Scout: Eagle Scout Bernard Anthony Kazmierski III from Troop 431 of Blessed Sacrament Church in Seminole presented a check for $455 to director of Pinellas Hope Pam Long. Pinellas Hope is a temporary emergency shelter for the homeless located on 20 acres in Pinellas Park provided by Diocesan Bishop Robert Lynch. The check represents the remainder of funds that he raised after completion of his Eagle Scout project, which was an enclosed greenhouse. Kazmierski hopes the homeless will be able to start seedlings and plants to be transplanted into the gardens at Pinellas Hope.
Eagle Scout honored: Eagle Scout Riley Michaels, a junior at Seminole High School, was presented with an Eagle Scout Certificate of Recognition from the Clearwater Chapter of the Sons of the American Revolution for outstanding leadership and citizenship as demonstrated by his attainment of the rank of Eagle Scout. SAR compatriot Art Hays presented the certificate at Michaels' Eagle Scout Court of Honor ceremony in May at the Freedom Square Retirement Community's Roskamp Auditorium. Oakhurst United Methodist Church in Seminole sponsors Boy Scout Troop 355. Michaels earned 36 merit badges and participated in many local troop camping trips and other activities. He camped out more than 60 nights since becoming a Boy Scout. Michaels held several troop leadership positions, including patrol leader, senior patrol leader and troop musician. His Eagle Scout leadership service project involved planning, organizing and constructing a meditation garden at the Bay Pines National Cemetery in Seminole. This included the installation of a walkway of paver bricks, two sturdy weatherproof benches and landscaping at the Commitment Shelter in the cemetery. Michaels aspires to a career as an officer in the U.S. military.
Dunedin man celebrates 100th birthday: John Giammaria of Dunedin celebrated his 100th birthday in April. He was born in Riverside, N.J., in 1914 and moved to Florida in 1977. Giammaria worked for Mobil Oil Corp. for 34 years as a research chemist, pioneering oil refining processes and developing 49 patents for the oil industry. Giammaria enjoys classical music and watching his favorite baseball team, the Tampa Bay Rays. He played golf until his early 90s, scoring three holes-in-one on his 85th birthday. His secret to a healthy life is moderation and a solitary drink in the evening, which he has done for the past 60 years.
Chandlery named top retailer: Caroline Caudill, owner of the Chandlery, with stores in Tarpon Springs and St. Petersburg, was named by the Florida Retail Federation as the 2014 recipient of the Florida Retailer of the Year Award. The award, sponsored by FRF since 1999, honors retailers who blend sound business practices with commitments to their communities, customers and employees. A selection panel made up of small business owners and other retail experts ranked nominees based on their scores in several categories, including community service and business acumen. Caudill founded the Chandlery in 1994.
Sunstar recognized for EMS work: Sunstar Paramedics was recently awarded a 2014 Mission: Lifeline EMS Silver Level Recognition Award by the American Heart Association. The award recognizes Sunstar's success in implementing quality improvement measures for the treatment of patients who suffer a severe heart attack known as an ST elevation myocardial infarction. Sunstar was one of six EMS programs recognized in Florida, based on its efforts in improving STEMI systems of care and improving the quality-of-life for these patients.
Boy rings Stock Exchange bell for dad's company: St. Paul's School fifth-grader Alec Lucas rang the opening bell for the New York Stock Exchange in May in honor of his father's company, Heritage Insurance, going public. Heritage Insurance is based in Clearwater. It offers home, condo and rental property insurance through a large network of independent agents.
Discovery honors St. Paul's teacher: Out of thousands of DEN (Discovery Educator Network) Stars, St. Paul's School fifth-grade teacher Karen Zilhaver received the coveted DENthusiasm award for her work on the DEN Leadership Council. Zilhaver received a high number of nominations from other STAR Discovery Educators. The awards recognized greatness within the community and those who have gone above and beyond in the field of education. The award was presented to Zilhaver by Kyle Schutt, director of Education Outreach & Curriculum Integration at Discovery Education.
Air Force Airman Nicholas P. Davis, a 2013 graduate of Countryside High School, graduated from basic military training at Joint Base San Antonio-Lackland in San Antonio, Texas. Airmen who complete basic training earn four credits toward an associate in applied science degree through the Community College of the Air Force. Davis is the son of Nyki Seabrook and grandson of Donald Seabrook, both of Palm Harbor.
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Air Force Airman Sterling H. Booth, a 2013 graduate of Palm Harbor University High School, graduated from basic military training at Joint Base San Antonio-Lackland in San Antonio, Texas. Airmen who complete basic training earn four credits toward an associate in applied science degree through the Community College of the Air Force. Booth is the son of Ken Booth of Oldsmar.