Friday, 02 November 2018 09:31

Ray Horner Podcast - 11/2/2018

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:17 - Remember, if you aren’t fully digital at home, this is the weekend we “fall back” with the time change. The panel opened Friday’s show talking about sleep, or lack thereof, and how they’re able to cope with their schedules.

10:52 - Akron Children’s Hospital has had Bill Considine in charge for 40 years, but that all changed this week. Grace Wakulchik is the new president and CEO at the hospital, and she talked to Ray about being prepared for the transition.

15:25 - Tammy Pescatelli got her start in standup at Hilarities Comedy Club in Cuyahoga Falls. Well, Hilarities has now become the Funny Stop, but she hasn’t forgotten her roots. She’s performing there this weekend, and being a Northeast Ohioan, she shared her thoughts on the Cleveland Browns.

22:20 - The world of comic books makes its way to Goodyear Hall this weekend. Michael Savene from the Akron Comicon joined Ray to give comic book enthusiasts some great access to the creators and exhibits.

25:50 - With Christmas around the corner and folks going shopping soon, our golf pro Dan Dauk talked about new clubs and equipment, especially for seniors hitting the links.

32:35 - Time to head to the front row with WQMX’s Scott Wynn. The big movie released this weekend is Bohemian Rhapsody, the new biopic on Freddie Mercury and Queen.

This week our 1590 WAKR Female Student Athlete of the Week is Theresa Damm, a senior basketball player from Our Lady of the Elms High School.

She says she got into basketball at an early age and as a senior leader, she wants to lead her team not only vocally, but by example as well.

"We have a young team, a lot of freshmen, so it's going to be a lot of them (the coaches) coaching, but also myself helping out the younger players learning the game," she says.

Coach John Reed echoed that sentiment as he offered his take on Theresa both as a player and as a person.

"She is a role model on and off the court and we are looking for her to model and teach the younger ladies how to play the game and how to do things the "Elms" way,"
he explained.

On the court, she will be expected to lead as well, Reed says.

"This will be her 4th year in the program in which she excels in every facet of the game and she has the ability to handle the ball and to post up."

Damm says that the Elms community is a very close one and they encourage leadership and being involved all across the board.

"Everybody really gets a fair shot at leadership and to have a voice, and to speak and be heard," she explained.


 Theresa is also her class vice president, and is involved in community activities such as volunteering at the Haven of Rest and the American Red Cross.

Upon graduation in the spring, Theresa plans on attending the University of Akron to study criminal justice and participate in the ROTC program. 

Our next 1590 WAKR Male Student Athlete of the Week is Nick Llewellyn, a senior football player from St. Vincent-St. Mary High School.

Nick says that the brotherhood amongst the football players and especially his fellow seniors was one of the things he most enjoyed during his time with the Fighting Irish.

"Not much has changed with our group, we were always fighting and shooting  for what we want, that was the main thing that kept us going all the way through."

He said that the alumni who played for the Irish also helped  guide the team as well.

"Everyone comes back and the whole school supports you, and it's a great family atmosphere," he said.

Llewellyn's coach, first year head coach Bobby Nickol talked about his grit and toughness on the football field.

"He's an Unbelievably hard working player and gives every ounce of his 160 pound frame to play a position meant for 200 pound guys," Coach Nickol said.

Nick 13 tackles, a forced fumble and an interception on Friday, their last game of the 2018 season.

As a young man, Nickol says Llewellyn is just as impressive.

"He has 4.0 GPA and is going to be highly successful in anything he chooses to do in life," Nickol continued. " He is the definition of a STVM student athlete."


 Nick is a two-sport athlete as a football player and a wrestler.

In addition to those things, he is also a Peer Minister, a member of the National Honor Society, and a member of the Irish Athletes for Christ, among other clubs and groups.

We wish Nick and Theresa the best in all of their future endeavors. 


Thursday, 01 November 2018 10:22

Ray Horner Podcast - 11/1/2018

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:17 - Bill Considine has been the head of Akron Children’s Hospital for 40 years, and though he’ll keep an emeritus title, he is stepping down. He talked to Ray about his time as CEO and the legacy he’ll leave behind, keeping it in good hands for Grace Wakulchik (who’ll join us tomorrow).

12:02 - A week before the election, the topic of birthright citizenship has been a divisive one, especially with the caravan headed towards the US border. Immigration attorney Farhad Sethna calls in to talk about the executive branch’s role here and how the laws could or could not be changed.

23:07 - Remember to “fall back” this weekend, as we turn our clocks back and get an extra hour of sleep. For many, the time change doesn’t affect us, but others have a real problem adjusting. Dr. Rajesh Tampi from Akron General talks about seasonal depression and how to properly cope.

30:31 - This podcast was recorded on November 1st. If you live in Akron, there are not only still leaves on the trees, but many are still green! Our master gardener Jeanne Poremski gave us a little insight and even took some phone questions.

Thursday, 01 November 2018 09:04

Babysitter Arrested, Charged with Rape

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The Summit County Sheriff's Office says they've charged Sage Smerk, 18, with rape, after he admitted to sexually assaulting a 5-year-old girl he was babysitting.

The mother of the victim came home October 28th to find her daughter and 2-year-old son alone in the house, where Smerk was supposed to be watching them. She called Smerk, he admitted to the assault, and she then called the Sheriff's Office. After a short pursuit, during which Smerk pulled out an airsoft pistol and fired it out his window, Smerk was apprehended.

He's charged with felony rape, but facing more charges pending the investigation.

See the full press release from the Summit County Sheriff's Office below. 


On October 28, 2018, a mother came home and found that her 5 year old daughter and 2 year old son had been left alone for two hours by the 18 year old babysitter. The mother called the babysitter, identified as 18 year old Sage Smerk and inquired as to why he left the children unattended. Smerk indicated that he had sexually assault the 5 year old female. The mother immediately called the Summit County Sheriff’s Office and reported the incident. Summit County Sheriff’s Deputies located Smerk’s vehicle on Mayfair Road and they attempted to initiate a traffic stop. Smerk failed to stop and subsequently fled toward North Canton. During the pursuit, Smerk fired an air pistol out the window of his vehicle at the patrol deputies and ran several intersections before he was apprehended without incident on Maple Street in North Canton.

Smerk was charged with Rape (F-1) and Failure to Obey an Order of a Police Officer (F-3). Additional charges are pending the outcome of the investigation. \

Thursday, 01 November 2018 08:27

Children's Considine Steps Down, Wakulchik Steps In

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A major announcement from Akron Children's Hospital Wednesday, as Bill Considine, long-time CEO says he is stepping down, effective Thursday, and that hospital president Grace Wakulchick is taking over.

Considine, who's been at the helm for nearly 40 years, named CEO at the age of 32, will now move into the CEO Emeritus role through January, 2020.

See the full press release from Akron Children's Hospital below: 

Grace Wakulchik assumes the title of president and CEO of Akron Children’s Hospital, effective today (Thursday), as William H. Considine becomes CEO Emeritus. Wakulchik has been president of the enterprise since July 2017.

Considine, who has served at the helm of Akron Children’s for nearly 40 years, is one of the longest-serving hospital chief executives in the nation, and during his tenure, the hospital has grown into a nationally-known and respected independent, integrated pediatric health system.

“As president and CEO, Grace Wakulchik assumes full responsibility for the operations of the hospital enterprise,” said John Orr, chairman of the Akron Children’s Hospital Board of Directors, in an announcement to employees. “During her 26 years at Akron Children’s, Grace has held various leadership roles, and was named president last year. We are extremely fortunate that we have someone so well prepared to take on this role. Grace has both a clinical and business background, which will serve the hospital well. She has enormous credibility with the Children’s family, and embodies the hospital’s culture, heritage, mission and family-centered care.”

In his new role as CEO Emeritus, Considine will focus his attention throughout 2019 on child advocacy, in particular, continuing his work with state and federal lawmakers to establish stable and equitable funding for children’s hospitals through Medicaid and other programs. He will retire from his role as CEO Emeritus on Jan. 1, 2020.

Four decades of growth 
When Considine, at age 32, was named president and CEO in 1979, Akron Children’s had an annual operating budget of $35 million, 900 employees and the geographic footprint of one hospital building at the corner of Bowery and Exchange streets in downtown Akron.

Today, Akron Children’s has a budget of $1.8 billion, more than 6,000 employees, two hospital campuses (Akron Children’s Mahoning Valley in Boardman celebrates 10 years this December), and 60-plus locations, including a network of 28 primary care offices, four urgent care centers, affiliations with 30 school districts and dozens of special care nurseries and pediatric specialty care clinics throughout Northern Ohio. The clinical staff provides care in more than one million patient encounters annually.

Three regional health centers are under construction, and the Considine Professional Building, which has been undergoing an $84 million addition, opened in October. This follows the Kay Jewelers Pavilion, which opened in 2015, in reshaping the downtown Akron campus.

This growth – coupled with enviable financial stability – has continued during a climate when other hospitals have closed their doors or merged. But Considine’s steady leadership and commitment to keeping Akron Children’s an independent, locally-governed children’s hospital has not only set it apart, it has become the key to its success.

Considine and Becky, his wife of 46 years have devoted countless hours to Akron organizations and civic causes. Hoping to make an impact on children not only now but in the future, they donated $1 million in 2009 to create the Rebecca D. Considine Research Institute at Akron Children’s.

The Year Ahead
As Considine, 71, moves into his role as CEO Emeritus, he will continue to work with the Children’s Hospital Association and the Ohio Children’s Hospital Association on child advocacy. Events at Akron Children’s throughout 2019 will celebrate his four decades of service, including a child advocacy conference in June and a gala celebration in October at Stan Hywet Hall & Gardens.

New Leadership
Wakulchik, 62, began her career as a registered nurse. In addition to receiving her bachelor’s and master’s degrees in nursing from Case Western Reserve University, Wakulchik earned a MBA from Kent State University and completed the Johnson & Johnson Wharton Fellows Program  in Management for Nurse Executives at the Wharton School and Leonard Davis Institute of Health Economics at the University of Pennsylvania.

As chief operating officer, she oversaw the construction of Akron’s Children’s $200 million Kay Jewelers Pavilion, featuring a new emergency department, neonatal intensive care unit and outpatient surgery center. Using Integrated Lean Project Delivery, the building was complete two months ahead of schedule and $60 million under budget.

She guided the installation of Akron Children’s electronic medical record transformation and MyChart patient portal with an investment of $47 million in 2012. She has also played key roles in initiatives to improve patient access, guide regional growth and help the organization achieve the highly-respected designation as a Magnet facility from the American Nurses Credentialing Center.

According to Orr, the Board of Directors has worked diligently with Considine in developing a seamless transition plan throughout the past three years.

“This plan will build on the hospital’s enormous growth and success and maintains our special workplace culture and focus on family-centered care,” said Orr. “The board is very pleased with the manner in which everyone is embracing the transition. Bill Considine and his wife, Becky, have given their all to Akron Children’s and this community. Words will never capture our admiration for his leadership and service. This transition is a testament to his values and belief in the Akron Children’s mission. He and Grace have seamlessly realigned responsibilities and the hospital’s momentum has not missed a beat.”

Wednesday, 31 October 2018 10:11

Ray Horner Podcast - 10/31/2018

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:17 - A local invention is looking to change the way seniors can get in and out of cars. It’s called Slide N Ride, and it will be available for purchase at Acme Fresh Markets. Slide N Ride got some help from students at Archbishop Hoban, and the inventor and students talked about their process in studio.

16:15 - Speaking of Hoban, the Knights continue to be one of the best football programs in the state, headed by coach Tim Tyrrell. He talked to Ray about his upcoming matchup against Mayfield.

22:56 - Julie Barnes from Summit County Children Services called into the show less than a week before the election to discuss Issue 8. For the first time in three decades, there is a levy renewal, and she discussed it.

27:04 - The 7-3 Manchester Panthers are set to take on Sandy Valley on Friday. Jim France talked to Ray about his program.

32:37 - Dr . Joe Congeni stopped by to talk about Kevin Love and his toe injury that may sideline him for over a month.

41:37 - Time now for the Academic Exam, brought to you by the Akron-Summit County Public Library. Today, Hannah and Cara from Barberton High School faced off.

Tuesday, 30 October 2018 12:20

Akron Jewish Community Hosting Vigil

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The Akron Jewish community mourns the loss of many innocent people and those who were severely wounded at Saturday’s shooting at the Tree of Life Synagogue in Pittsburgh. Our thoughts and prayers are with our brothers, sisters, first responders and community members who were impacted by this horrific crime of hate. Together we stand with all of Pittsburgh and the victims in the face of this terrible violence. May the memories of those who lost their lives be for a blessing.

We invite the entire Akron community to join us for an interfaith community vigil “Standing Together” on Thursday, Nov. 1, from 5:30 to 6:15 p.m., at the Schultz Campus for Jewish Life located at 750 White Pond Drive in Akron. Community members of all faiths, backgrounds and neighborhoods are invited to join the gathering.

Clergy from Anshe Sfard Synagogue, Beth El Congregation and Temple Israel will lead the public in prayer. Interfaith community members and public officials have been invited as special guests.

Doors open at 5 p.m. Due to heightened security, no large bags or backpacks will be permitted. For more information, please call 330-867-7850 or visit

If you would like to contribute to a special fund for the victims of the tragedy in Pittsburgh, please click here

Tuesday, 30 October 2018 11:12

Man Assaults Roommate Over TV Volume

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Akron Police were called to a home in the 500 block of East South Street, Monday night around 11:30, on a report of a man who was assaulted by his roommate. 

When officers arrived, they found the 59-year-old victim who had been hit in the head with a wrench, allegedly by his roommate, 56-year-old Gary J. Thompson. 

The victim was transported by EMS to Akron City Hospital with non-life threatening injuries, according to the police report. 

Thompson, meanwhile, has been booked into the Summit County Jail on charges of felonious assault. Included in the report was that Thompson attacked his roommate over the volume of the television. 

Tuesday, 30 October 2018 10:14

Ray Horner Podcast - 10/30/2018

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:17 - We’re now a week away from the midterm elections, which, in Ohio, include the governor race. Current attorney general Mike DeWine called into the show to discuss his campaign and his platforms leading up to election day.

11:27 - Not long after we got off the air yesterday, the Cleveland Browns said goodbye to head coach Hue Jackson and, eventually, OC Todd Haley. DC Gregg Williams is the interim head coach with the understanding that the Browns will be on the search for a head coach soon.

17:45 - It started as an interim position, but it was made permanent on Monday, as Dr. Cliff Deveny is now the president and CEO of Summa Health Systems. The Akron native talked to Ray about his tenure so far and what he foresees down the road.

24:01 - The Wadsworth football team is undefeated on the season, but have a big game against Wooster on the horizon. Justin Todd, the head coach, talked about his Grizzlies.

29:36 - Speaking of undefeated teams, Barberton has been trudging through their opponents this season. Head coach Tony Gotto talked about his Magics and their upcoming games against Tri-Valley.

34:09 - Back to the Browns. Fred Greetham from the Orange & Brown Report was in Berea for the bloodbath at Browns camp and he shared what he knows and has heard.

Monday, 29 October 2018 12:32

MOVIE REVIEWS - In Theaters Now

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Well, it's 40 years later and this series is still going and still a hit.  This version picks up 40 years after the original, and attempts to take us to back to the original story to a degree.

Jamie Lee Curtis stars in this, she still plays the same character as she did in the original, and she has a score to settle with Micheal Meyers who has been in jail for 40 years, but is now out as he has escaped.  Some of this really works, and some of this really doesn't.  My biggest problem is simply this.  Somehow, Micheal Meyers who is now 60-plus is still the awesome force he was then.  You can shoot him, run him down with a car, and about anything else, and he's not even phased.

There is a nice "creepy" factor to this and there is wonderful use of the incredible soundtrack as well.  This looks good, and outside of the Meyers gaffe, there is a decent script the work with here. But in the end, the star of this movie, is the nostalgia that surrounds it.  Fans love the idea of this as much as any frame of this movie.

Halloween.  Tons of hype. 


First Man

This is a huge role or Ryan Gosling and he delivers in the new Neil Armstrong bio-pic, First Man. Armstrong, of course the first human to walk on the moon, was a very complicated man, and this pic dares to go there.  This is more than just a NASA flick, it shows Armstrong in all facets of his life in the heat of the space race.  And to its credit, they show a man who is amazing, and very flawed at the same time.

This deals with his personal life, as much as his life as an astronaut.  The severe ups and downs he was dealing with both as a professional and as a husband and father.  What we have is a man who is not the warmest muffin in the tin, and one that takes tragedy and decides to lose himself in his work.  This also shows the extreme pressure the entire NASA family was under during the Gemini and Apollo Programs, as that is part of the story.

Gosling is terrific, and so the the very large supporting cast.  This takes us back beautifully to the Saturn V days of NASA, and the sets, costuming, styling, makeup and special effects are extremely good. The musical soundtrack is right on point, especially during the lunar scenes, and the use of actual NASA spoken footage is fantastic too.

This had a disappointing opening weekend money wise, and that's too bad.  Not enough action maybe for some, and the timing of this release is strange, as I feel more around the holidays may have been better.  This may be the best movie of the year that no one will really see.   Very, very good.

A Star Is Born

It will be a brave critic who will dare give a negative about this new version of a classic tale.  So many won't go there. And neither will I, as this is pretty darn good for the most part.  Bradley Cooper and Lady GAGA star in this nicely updated adaptation of the timeless story.  They both shine.  But she is terrific!

The music has been updated well, and for my eyes and ears, there could have been more of it.  The two things this movie needed was her, and new music, and they both deliver.  This will be the opportunity and the role of her career, as these kind of projects don't come around often, and she grabs it.  There is Oscar buzz about her here, and a nomination will happen, and probably a win. This is powerful, emotional and moving much of the time. There are some very poignant scenes that had the theater crying, and that's to its credit.

Truth be told, this had great pace to it and the 2 hour 15 is not really a problem.  There is a weakness or two.  For me, Lady GAGA, in her role was not an underdog enough at the beginning, and some of her written dialogue is tough to believe at times, but that fades.  Her rise to stardom is handled well after a shaky start, but it's not a deal breaker.  Cooper is good here, but his character is extremely one dimensional and that is fatiguing at times.  But again, there is far more to like here, than not.

A Star Is Born.  You'll love it, well done.

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