A disaster was averted at Ellwood City’s library during a recent storm. Cindy Glogowski, a library aide, and Nancy Wallace, youth services coordinator, were working at the desk when Glogowski said she heard water running. Wallace looked up and saw what she described as a cascade of horrible yellow water pouring from the ceiling. She said it looked like a bathtub full of water being emptied. Wallace phoned her husband, Denny, to come and help, but he had already left home for a Masons’ function — and he was in his tuxedo. “There is nothing as useless as a man in a tux,” Wallace said with a laugh. Librarian Veronica Pacella was amazed to receive the call from Wallace saying the roof had fallen in and water was pouring down. Her first thought was, we don’t have a roof. The library is on the first floor of the Masonic Temple, with the Masons on the top floor. But there was no time to think about roofs as they snatched books from harm’s way. When the tomes were safely away from the water, staffers began a triage for them: dry, a little wet and wet. Those that had not been touched by the water were put in one pile, those that just had wet covers went into another and those that had water in them went into a third. They quickly wiped as much water as possible from the books and set the wet ones up to dry with their pages open. After sopping up the floor, they set a fan in motion, turned on the air conditioner and hoped for the best. “It was mainly our Indian history collection,” Pacella said. “Many of the books are out of print and are priceless. They are wonderful reference books full of information.” The staffers were able to save all the books. Pacella, noting the library was open at the time, said she was glad no one had been standing in that area when the ceiling tiles fell down. It was five minutes before 7 when the water poured in. An hour later and the library would have been closed for the night with everyone gone. They would have opened up in the morning and found the disaster, too late to save the books. Bill Blank, a member of the Masons’ house committee, said they are not sure what caused the problem. However, he said, he believes it was because the down spouts didn’t carry away June 19’s heavy downpour. The Masons are replacing the roof.

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