Fran and Paul

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<p>Gun law difficulties50 centsWASHINGTON (AP) One early focus of new gun regulations by President Barack Obama and some lawmakers would reinstate a federal ban on assault weapons, a law widely regarded as imperfect. The ban, which existed for 10 years until 2004, would have made it illegal for the young gunman in Connecticut to use the 30-round magazines that allowed him to shoot so many elementary school students before he reloaded. But the ban and other U.S. gun laws wouldnt have prevented his mothers purchase of the powerful assault rifle or the especially deadly ammunition that he used to kill 26 people. A generation of U.S. gun</p> <p>The Crescent-NewsDHS goes to Rossford, WhitmerThursday, December 20, 2012laws and the inherent compromises intended to balance constitutional gun rights and public safety reflects the intricacies of applying government policy to stem acts of mass violence. Since July, there have been at least four mass shootings that killed 47 people and wounded dozens more in Connecticut, Colorado, Oregon and Wisconsin. The killing of 20 children and six adults in a Newtown, Conn., elementary school appears to be a tipping point that pushed Congress and the White House toward tackling new gun laws. Obama on Wednesday directed Vice President Joe Biden to produce recom GUn, Page A12</p> <p>ON THE ROAD</p> <p>SPORTS | B1</p> <p>Defiance, Ohio</p> <p>hrist mas</p> <p>special</p> <p>Policies have attempted to stem acts of mass violence</p> <p>Jack Palmer/C-N Photo</p> <p>After two years of personal tragedy and chal- Christmas. They are pictured with their two chillenges, Paul Drasutis and Francine Meyer-Drasutis dren, Andrew Meyer (left) and Josh Meyer, as are eagerly anticipating a normal and relaxing well as their English bulldog, Benny.</p> <p>lemonade CHRIstmasCouple readjusting after plane crash, Afghanistan deploymentmaking an emergency landing near the intersection of Christy and Nagel roads, about seven miles north of Defiance. hey have endured a plane We had just started dating, said Francine. Both crash, his 12-month tour of of us were lucky to survive. Afghanistan and the death of Paul spent just one night in the hospital, but both their fathers. Francine wasnt as fortunate. And thats just since 2010. I broke my back and left arm. They took me to With those onerous days Defiance Regional Medical Center and transferred behind them, Paul Drasutis and me that same day to Toledo Hospital. I spent three Francine Meyer-Drasutis are weeks in the hospital and had two surgeries. Doctors looking forward to a normal and put two rods in my back, and 16 screws and a plate relaxing Christmas. in my arm. They said the recovery period would be Im still adapting, its only been three months long and that I would have to learn how to walk all since Ive been home from Afghanistan, said Paul, over again. who works at the local GM plant and is a member of With three minor children at home, Francine had the Ohio Army National Guard. Coming home after other concerns besides her condition. being gone a year is a huge readjustment. The first time Paul visited me in the hospital he The two of us have been through a lot the past told me not to worry. Not only would he take care of couple years, added Francine. Now its time to me, he offered to move into my house and take care make lemonade out of all those lemons. of my three kids (at that time a high school junior, The Defiance couples tumultuous times began on sophomore and fourth-grader). For a man without a bright Sunday afternoon in May 2010 when Pauls children to offer to do that, well, that was really speKitfox Speedster fixed-wing aircraft crashed while cHrIstmAs, Page A12 By JACK PALMER</p> <p>Ohio AG open to arming trained school staff membersBy MARC KOVACC-N Capital Bureau</p> <p>COLUMBUS Ohio Attorney General Mike DeWine indicated Wednesday that he is open to local school boards arming trained teachers, principals and staff as a means of responding quickly to shooting incidents. If I was on a school board ... I would seriously</p> <p>T</p> <p>palmer@crescent-news.com</p> <p>MIKE DeWINE consider having someone in that school who may be an ex-police officer, someone who has significant train DewIne, Page A12</p> <p>Holiday lighting contest</p> <p>Charity care goes down a bitBy DARLENE PRINCEprince@crescent-news.com</p> <p>Jenny Derringer/C-N Photo</p> <p>Defiance Citizens in Action hosted a holiday lighting contest this month, with top winners chosen in the categories of traditional, contemporary and characters. Winning displays belonged to Bonnie Shock, 800 Wemor Ave., tra-</p> <p>ditional; Dave and Loretta Schroeder, 721 Emblanche Drive, contemporary; and Robert and Cheryl Yeo, 1064 Valley Forge Drive, characters (pictured). Proceeds from the contest will benefit Relay for Life of Defiance.</p> <p>Charity care provided by not-for-profit hospitals has been on the increase in some parts of the state, particularly in the northeast, but appears to be going slightly down in this area due to an improving economy. According to the Ohio Hospital Association (OHA), in Ohio by state law, families with incomes at or below the federal poverty level receive free, medically-necessary care from</p> <p>hospitals. In 2010, Ohio hos- those below it. (The federal pitals provided more free poverty line is $15,130 for care to individuals above two people and $23,050 for the federal poverty line than cHArItY, Page A7</p> <p>Classified B9-12 Comics B8 Court news A10</p> <p>InsIde today</p> <p>Deaths Lifestyle Outdoor</p> <p>A5 Sports B6 TV B5 Weather</p> <p>CHeCK tHese stoRIesB1-5 B7 A12</p> <p>onlIne crescent-news.comA5 A5 A5 Facebook.com/ crescentnews Twitter.com/ crescentnewsDix Communications</p> <p>Township trustees have good news Paulding 4-H looking for new members Hicksville woman to be sentenced</p> <p>For home delivery, call 419-784-5441, ext. 234</p> <p>ITALIAN CHEESE BREAD NOW OPEN319 E. 2ND ST. 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Visit our website at www.littlecaesars.com</p> <p> A12</p> <p>weather/news</p> <p>The Crescent-NewsThursday,December20,2012</p> <p>Reclining Sofas From</p> <p>Kens Furniture1710 Jefferson Ave., Defiance 419-782-6801 1-800-678-4838 Visit Our Website: kensfurnitureinc.com Store Hours: Mon 9-8; Tues, Wed, Th, Fri 9-5:30; Sat 9-4 Closed Sunday Family DayDISCOUNTERS OF FINE FURNITURE</p> <p>$</p> <p>699</p> <p>Huge Mattress Sale GOING ON NOW!Feature of the Week</p> <p>&amp; MATTRESS CENTER</p> <p>RECLINERS2 Forstarting at</p> <p>$</p> <p>6 OR 12 MONTHS NO INTEREST**with approved credit</p> <p>499GUN</p> <p>Serta Perfect Sleeper Mattress Queen Size Seth)</p> <p>(Plus</p> <p>FREE DELIVERYtal defective or has been committed to any mental institution from buying a gun. Yet Jared Loughner, who has pleaded guilty earlier this year in the deadly 2011 attack on thenRep. Gabrielle Giffords in Tucson, Ariz., and has at times been forcefully medicated to treat his mental illness, was not ruled by a court to be mentally ill before the attack. Investigators are still sorting out the past of 20-yearold Adam Lanza, the gunman in the Newtown school killings. But since he didnt buy the guns his mother owned the firearms and kept them in the familys home federal laws wouldnt have affected Lanzas access to them. Tom Diaz, a senior policy analyst at the Violence Policy Center, said lawmakers should focus on a weapons firepower. In the Colorado theater shooting and the deadly attack at a suburban Portland mall, police said the accused shooters used AR-15 assault rifles, versions of which were outlawed under the 1994 ban. Diaz said bullets fired from those types of guns are powerful enough to pierce all but the highestgrade, military-style, bullet-proof vests. Its designed for battlefield use, Diaz said. Gun control long has been a politically difficult subject. The fact that this problem is complex can no longer be an excuse for doing nothing, Obama said. The fact that we cant prevent every act of violence doesnt mean we cant steadily reduce the violence. The president, who expended little political capital on gun control despite a series of mass shootings in his first term, bristled at suggestions that he had been silent on the issue during his first four years in office.</p> <p>$399</p> <p>DEWINEFrom Page A1</p> <p>ing, who had access to a gun in school, he said. But youd have to be very careful about it. Im not saying everyone in school should be armed, but someone who knows exactly what they are doing and who has that gun under lock and key but who can get to it instantly out of their office. Thats something that I think I would at least debate and talk about in a school. But, he added, Each school is different. Each school has unique needs. And each school has the culture of that community. DeWine made the comments during a press conference Wednesday, where he announced plans to develop training for teachers to respond to shooting incidents, like the one that occurred in Newtown, Conn., that left more than two dozen people, most of them young children, dead. DeWine called teachers the real first responders in such shooting incidents, and it makes sense to be training them as well as law enforcement officers. Michael Sawyers, acting superintendent for public instruction for the state, added, Safety is paramount. Parents and guardians have to believe their children will be safe at school. ... Although we</p> <p>cant prevent everything, as illustrated by Connecticut, its our responsibility to do all we can on a daily basis to ensure kids come to school and have a safe, productive learning environment. Ohio schools already are required under state law to submit safety plans to the attorney generals office for use by law enforcement and other emergency responders who are dealing with incidents. Earlier this summer, DeWine chastised more than 150 schools that had failed to submit plans. He said Wednesday that he expected most to have plans on file in coming weeks. However, of the nearly 4,900 plans the office has in hand, most fall short of guidelines released in recent days by DeWines office and a task force that studied the issue, meaning the details are inadequate. DeWine said his office will be working with schools to improve the plans. We cannot, unless we barricade every school in this country, assure that theres never going to be a problem, he said. But what we can do and what is our moral obligation to do as citizens and as elected officials, is to minimize the risk, increase our odds of the kids surviving and decrease the odds of something happening.</p> <p>From Page A1</p> <p>mendations on new gun laws and pledged to push for them without delay. This time, the words need to lead to action, Obama said. The details of such laws have long stymied lawmakers. Gun control advocates say this has left significant gaps in laws that have not had and likely would not have much impact on recent deadly shootings. The 1994 ban outlawed specific weapons, including the Colt AR-15, UZI and TEC-9, and highcapacity magazines and clips that held more than 10 bullets. But the law didnt outlaw the caliber the approximate internal diameter of the barrel of any of the high-powered weapons used in the most recent mass killings. Also, federal law bars someone who has been adjudicated as a menI always like to spend Christmas Day relaxing with my immediate family. Its pretty much just a jammies day, we never get out of our pajamas. Its going to be great just sitting back and enjoy-</p> <p>CHRISTMASFrom Page A1</p> <p>cial. I think thats when I really fell in love with him, she added. By the time I came home from the hospital the kids were in love with him, too. Francines recovery was slowly progressing and by early December she was mobile with the aid of a walker. Thats when I suffered a bleeding ulcer that landed me back in the hospital, she said. I needed about 10 units of blood and was hospitalized another 10 days. I was looking forward to having a Hallmark home at Christmas, but I ended up wrapping presents in the hospital. They released me Christmas Eve. The following spring (2011), tragedy struck her family. My dad, Eugene Meyer, died in a fire at their home (near Sherwood). He was a U.S. Army veteran and very involved in the AMVETS (past commander of Defiance Post 1991 and also 9th District past commander). He was a wonderful man. His was a retired millwright at GM and everybody called him Farmer. Paul and Francine, engaged at the time of her fathers death, were married that summer. A few weeks later, he was notified of his upcoming 12-month deployment to</p> <p>Afghanistan. A native of Florida and alumnus of Louisiana State University, Paul had been moved to Defiance by GM in 2001 due to his prior foundry experience. My military service dates back 29 years, he said. I was active in the Marines for nine years, spent four years in the Army Reserves, went to college as member of the Air Force Reserves for nine years and since 2005 have been a member of the Ohio Army National Guard. I was never deployed during a war before 2003, but since that time Ive served three tours of duty. He had previously served seven months in Spain in 2003 and 18 months in Iraq in 2006-07. His new orders were to report for active duty in Afghanistan that September. I was gone an entire year except for about 10 days home last Christmas, he said. It was nice to see everyone, including my parents, but it was still a really difficult holiday knowing I had to go back right away. I had to squeeze so much in so little time, we were always in a hurry to go somewhere. Francine was encouraged to start a hobby during her husbands 12-month deployment. I took up antique furniture restoration and repair and it quickly became my passion, she said. The doctors still wont let me go back to work full-time,</p> <p>but they let me tinker with my antiques. I made our living room mantle out of old bed footboard and an...</p>