Land O’ Lakes hoops coach retires after 31 years

Land O’ Lakes High School varsity boys basketball coach Dave Puhalski is ready for a timeout. After 31 years roaming the Gators sidelines, barking orders, drawing up plays, and molding boys into young men, the longtime coach announced his retirement following the 2019-2020 season. Puhalski’s swan song was a memorable one — sending off eight seniors to the tune of a 21-6 record, a 5A-7 … [Read more...]

78 floors up, blind man and guide dog survive 9/11

Michael Hingson felt a sense of calmness as he walked floor by floor — exiting the World Trade Center on Sept. 11, 2001. Hingson has been blind since birth and he, with his former guide dog, Roselle, had to work as a team to find their way to safety. Hingson, the author of “Thunder Dog: The True Story of a Blind Man, His Guide Dog and the Triumph of Trust,” recently shared his story at Saint … [Read more...]

When Alice saw Earl, ‘It was love at first sight’

Alice and Earl Angel were only teenagers when they met, but Alice knew instantly that he was the one for her. The couple — celebrating their 77th anniversary on Feb. 20 — recalled that first meeting. “In our little town, we had what you call a square,” Earl said. People would come to people watch there, or meet up with friends. “I come around the corner one evening, and I see this … [Read more...]

Olympic softball legend inspires at Pasco Chamber

To kick off its 27th annual Business Development Week luncheon, The Greater Pasco Chamber of Commerce brought in a keynote speaker to serve up a different kind of pitch — literally. It was two-time Olympic softball gold medalist and ESPN lead softball analyst Michele Smith, a Treasure Island resident who has family ties to Pasco County. Speaking at Spartan Manor in New Port Richey, the … [Read more...]

Navigating the choppy waters of divorce

It’s that time of year, when bakeries, florists and jewelers are busy — in the approach to Valentine’s Day. It can be a time of love, affection and euphoria — but also can be a painful trigger for those struggling through the turmoil of divorce. For one Wesley Chapel woman, it’s a time when existing or new clients may feel a particular need to turn to her for support. Hayley Lisa … [Read more...]

Inspiring others with lyrical rhymes

In celebration of Martin Luther King Jr. Day, Saint Leo University added a hip-hop element — showcasing the rapper Duke. The Jan. 21 event was a part of the school’s weeklong series, recognizing the iconic civil rights leader. Duke shared his story and inspirational words – sometimes conveyed through rap lyrics. He noted his lyrics often are influenced by the words of the slain civil … [Read more...]

Local teen attracts attention for her compassion, good works

Sally Campbell is living proof that teenagers can make an impact in their community. The 17-year-old’s compassion for people struggling with cancer inspired her to create “Sallybrating with a Cause,” a nonprofit that has provided arts and crafts, meals, goodie bags, live entertainment and fun activities for residents of Hope Lodge in Tampa. Hope Lodge provides temporary free lodging for … [Read more...]

He helped catch criminals, solve crimes for 50 years

Det. Roger Cockerill — who was instrumental in some of the Pasco County Sheriff’s Office’s  largest investigations — has retired from a law enforcement career that spanned a half-century. In Pasco, his work included investigations involving illegal drug trafficking, casino style gambling, prostitution and human trafficking. But his career in law enforcement began in February 1967 at the … [Read more...]

Troop 33 honors 11 Eagle Scouts

An Eagle Court of Honor celebrated the accomplishments of 11 young men recently at Our Lady of the Rosary Catholic Church, in Land O’ Lakes. Each of these members of Troop 33 received the rank of Eagle Scout: Evan Hernandez, Gabriel Vega, Michael Thibeau, Miguel Mockabee, Phillip Morrical, Spencer Huffman, John A. Turbessi, Cesar Arthur Castillo, Ethan Fuhrmeister, Louis Mooney Jr. and Matthew … [Read more...]

Principal of the year is surprised by honor

Principal JoAnne Glenn and her staff were conducting a training seminar — when Pasco Schools Superintendent Kurt Browning and an entourage cruised into the room with flowers, balloons, a cookie cake and an announcement. The superintendent offered Glenn hearty congratulations, as he announced she was the district’s principal of the year. School Board Chairwoman Colleen Beaudoin gave Glenn a … [Read more...]