Philip McManus (“Mr. Phil”) the former Branch Director of the Boys & Girls Clubs of Greater Washington – Germantown Branch (as well as, the former Branch Director of the former Rockville Branch and the former Silver Spring Branch) passed away on Dec 4, 2021.

Those who knew him described him as a role model and mentor to thousands of youth in the Montgomery County region, especially the Germantown area, for over 30 years.

His memorial service will be this December 13, 2021, 11:00 AM at
Resthaven Funeral Home

9501 Catoctin Mt. Hwy.

Frederick, Maryland 21701

Philip Taliaferro “Phil” McManus, 61, died peacefully at his home in Frederick, MD on Saturday, December 4th. Phil was born in Orleans, France on May 2, 1960. As a member of an Army family, he attended primary and secondary schools in Columbus, OH, Petersburg, VA, Munich and Berlin, Germany, and Fayetteville, NC. He graduated from Southwestern Oklahoma State University in 1985 and went on to play professional basketball around the globe in Ireland, Portugal, Mexico and Belgium.  

After retiring from professional basketball, Phil began his career with the Boys & Girls Club of Greater Washington in December 1990 as the Education Director at the Montana Terrace Boys & Girls Club, Washington, D.C. In succession, Phil served as the Program Director at the Rockville Club and was promoted to the Branch Director. Phil went on to establish a site in Silver Spring at the Capt. James E. Daly Elementary School in 1999 where he served as the Branch Director and in 2002 made a home at the new Germantown Club.  

Key initiatives developed under Phil’s leadership at the Germantown Club include SMART Moves (teen character development), Passport to Manhood (boys’ rites of passage), and Keystone Club (teen leadership). Phil also developed key partnerships with Boys & Girls Club Board Members, Montgomery County government officials, and local businesses as a part of successfully raising the profile of and funds for the Germantown Club.  

He is remembered by family members, friends and co-workers for his great sense of humor, his tremendous generosity of spirit, and his tireless work ethic in supporting and mentoring friends and family. He is survived by his beloved wife Sherrye; son Christian; granddaughter Cheyenne; brother Kenneth; nephews Michael and David; Uncle Abraham; mother-in-law Annie Bland; sister-in-law Ava Robinson; and numerous cherished cousins. He was predeceased by his parents COL (Ret) Booker and Mary McManus, and father-in-law SFC (Ret) Loyd Fowler, Sr. 

A memorial service will be held at Resthaven Funeral Home, 9501 Catoctin Mtn. Hwy. (U.S. Route 15 North), Frederick, MD 21701 on Monday, December 13, 2021 at 11:00 AM. In lieu of flowers, the family asks that donations be made to the ALS Association ( or the Germantown Branch of the Boys & Girls Club of Greater Washington ( A livestream of Mr. McManus’ service may be viewed from his obituary at . 


Updated on 10/26/21 at 1:55pm with additional information from The Washington Post

A fifth grade student at Farmland Elementary School has died, according to a letter sent home to the Rockville elementary school community.

According to a report from WJLA, “The student reportedly got ill inside the classroom and the school nurse was called. The school nurse determined 911 needed to be called. The school was placed into “shelter in place” mode while first responders tried to help the child. The child was taken to an area hospital where they were pronounced dead.“

The Washington Post writes that “school officials in Montgomery said they do not know the child’s cause of death but said the medical emergency came on suddenly at 9:50 a.m. Monday, not long after classes began at Farmland Elementary School, in the North Bethesda-Rockville area.”

School officials have also stated that they cannot comment on any possible connection to Covid-19, as they do not have any information on what caused the sudden illness.

The school will continue to have qualified staff onsite to support students and staff as they deal with this loss in the days ahead.

The letter to the Farmland Elementary School community can be seen below.

“Good evening, Farmland families:

As a follow-up to my earlier communication, where I shared an onsite emergency, resulting in having
emergency personnel on-site, it is with sadness that I inform you of the sudden death of one of our
5th-grade students.

As a school community, we are working to balance offering respect and support to his family at this
sad time.

While we have not shared this loss with any of our students, our school psychologist and counselors
along with the district-level staff were onsite and available to support our students who were present
when the medical emergency occurred. We will continue to have qualified staff onsite to support
students and staff as we deal with this loss in the days ahead.

It is very difficult for all of us to face the death of a young person. Your child may be coming home with
questions and worries about this loss. Should you desire to discuss this loss with your child at home,
we have enclosed some suggestions that may prove helpful to you as you discuss death.

I know you join me in extending heartfelt sympathy to this family and the Farmland family during this time. When we receive information regarding funeral arrangements, I will share the information with you.

Your support during this challenging time for our school community is appreciated.

April D Longest
Farmland ES”


4 year old Iliana Hernandez of Silver Spring was killed in a crash that occurred a little after 10pm at the intersection of Georgia Avenue and Dexter Avenue near the Forest Glen area in Silver Spring, police said in a press release on Monday.

A GoFundMe has been created to help Iliana’s family with funeral arrangements.

Per the press release:

Detectives from the Montgomery County Department of Police – Collision Reconstruction Unit (CRU) are investigating a fatal collision involving three vehicles that occurred Thursday evening, October 21, in Silver Spring.

At approximately 10:13 p.m., 3rd District officers and Montgomery County Fire Rescue personnel responded to the intersection of Georgia Avenue at Dexter Avenue for the report of a three-vehicle collision.

The preliminary investigation has revealed that a black 2005 Acura RSX and a silver 2021 Honda Civic were traveling southbound on Georgia Avenue, approaching Dexter Avenue. The driver of a black 2020 Ford Fusion attempted to make a left turn from northbound Georgia Avenue to Dexter Avenue and was struck by both the Acura and the Honda. The Acura then left the roadway and struck a large decorative brick wall. The Honda and Ford remained on the roadway.

The Acura was carrying three individuals at the time of the collision. The driver and one of the passengers were transported to a local hospital with serious, but non-life-threatening injuries. The rear passenger, a four-year-old child (corrected from three year old) was transported to a local hospital with life-threatening injuries and was later pronounced deceased. The drivers of both the Honda and Ford were also transported to area hospitals with non-life-threatening injuries.

The name of the deceased will be released following proper notification of family. This is an active and ongoing investigation.

The Collision Reconstruction Unit (CRU) continues to investigate this collision.  Anyone with information regarding this collision is asked to contact CRU detectives at 240-773-6620.



Montgomery a county a police have confirmed one person dead and multiple people injured after a crash on Georgia Avenue at Dexter Avenue in Silver Spring (Forest Glen) last night.

The crash occurred around 10pm last night and involved at least two children being transported to the hospital.

No further details have been provided at this time.

Featured photo courtesy of Allison Papson’s tweet, seen below.


Updated at 6:22pm with additional information

Montgomery County Fire and Rescue Services encountered heavy fire upon arriving to the 19600 block of Wootton Avenue, near Hughes Road, in Poolesville.

A family of 2 adults, 3 kids, and 1 snake has been displaced. The family cat is currently missing and several goldfish did not survive. The fire originated in the kitchen and started due to unattended food/oil on the stove top.

There were approximately $200k in damages.

The fire was put out by 4:32pm and no injuries were reported in the most recent tweet by MCFRS PIO, Pete Piringer.



Vanessa Moya is in critical, but stable, condition after a driver ran her over twice in a Pike & Rose parking lot early Thursday morning.

We spoke with Adriana Moya, Vanessa Moya’s sister, who told us that a fight broke out in a parking lot at Pike & Rose between 2am and 3am. Adriana tells us that Vanessa attempted to help keep peace when she was run over by a driver. The driver then ran her over once more while speeding away from the incident.

Police is currently investigating the incident.

“You never think something like this can happen to you and then it does. We just want justice for my sister.” Adriana told us.

Vanessa suffered fractures on her pelvis, ribs, arm, sternum, and also has a bleeding liver, according to a GoFundMe that has been created to help with medical expenses.

A graphic video of the incident that has been posted online can be seen in this link– viewer discretion advised.

Local Blues Icon Warner Williams Has Died
Warner Williams has passed away at the age of 91.  Williams, who was born in Takoma Park, often performed alongside Jay Summerour and Eric Selvy as Little Bit A Blues. Warner played at venues throughout Montgomery County and beyond, and would often stop by local open-mic nights at area bars and restaurants.
The band made the announcement this morning on their Facebook page:

Williams was a recipient of a 2011 National Heritage Fellowship awarded by the National Endowment for the Arts, which is the United States government’s highest honor in the folk and traditional arts.

According to their bio, Little Bit of Blues were known for playing in the “Piedmont blues style, a regional variant of the blues that developed in North Carolina, South Carolina, Virginia, Maryland and West Virginia.”



Detectives from the Montgomery County Police Department – Major Crimes Division have arrested and charged three individuals for the 2017 homicide of 17-year-old Christian Leroy Matthews in Silver Spring.

On March 21, 2017, at approximately 2:25 a.m., 3rd District officers responded to the 1000 block of Mondrian Terrace for a suspicious situation.

When officers arrived at the scene, they located Christian Matthews, unresponsive. Matthews was transported to an area hospital where he was pronounced deceased. The Office of the Chief Medical Examiner ruled the manner of death a homicide and the cause Asphyxia.

In March of 2017, Tysean Lipford, currently age 24, was arrested and charged with the First Degree Murder of Christian Matthews. In 2019, Lipford was found guilty of Second Degree Murder and sentenced to 30 years.

During the course of the investigation, 23-year-old twin sisters, Lemae Markia Matthews and Leaundra Kim Matthews, along with 25-year-old Daniel Juwan Howard were identified as potential suspects in the murder of the twins’ brother.

After four years of intense investigative work, probable cause was developed to charge the Matthews sisters, and Daniel Juwan Howard with first-degree murder.

Detectives applied for and received an arrest warrant charging each suspect with first-degree murder and conspiracy to commit first-degree murder.

Lemae Markia Matthews was arrested in Potomac on the strength of a Montgomery County arrest warrant.

Leaundra Kim Matthews was arrested in Takoma Park on the strength of a Montgomery County arrest warrant.

Daniel Juwan Howard was arrested in Silver Spring on the strength of a Montgomery County arrest warrant.

All three subjects are being held without bond at the Montgomery County Correctional Facility.

Courtesy of Montgomery County Department of Police


Montgomery County Executive Marc Elrich released a statement on the passing of Board to Education member Patricia O’Neill. The full statement can be seen below:

We are saddened to learn about the passing of Montgomery County Board of Education Member Patricia O’Neill. Her love of our children was only matched by her commitment to the constituents she served for nearly a quarter of a century.

Montgomery County lost a leader, public servant, and compassionate resident who was determined to make this County a better place for current and future generations. To honor her legacy, we need to continue the work she dedicated her life to.

I join all Montgomery County residents this evening in extending our thoughts and sympathies to Mrs. O’Neill’s family and friends as well everyone in our Montgomery County Public Schools community.


Montgomery County Board of Education President Brenda Wolff sent a message to the community announcing the passing of Board of Education member, Patricia O’Neill.

The message can be seen below:

The Montgomery County Board of Education regrets to announce that Mrs. Patricia O’Neill,  Board of Education member, passed away today, September 14, 2021. Mrs. O’Neill served on the Board for more than twenty years and the loss of her wisdom, passion and commitment will  be felt in the Montgomery County community for a long time. We are deeply saddened by Mrs. O’Neill’s passing and offer our deepest condolences to the O’Neill family.

“Pat had years of institutional knowledge and a deep commitment to Montgomery County Public Schools,” said Board of Education President Brenda Wolff. “We have lost an impassioned advocate for children, students and our community. Mrs. O’Neill leaves a legacy of educational excellence that will guide our work for years to come.”

“Pat O’Neill was a fierce champion for staff, students and families and the impact of her work will live on for generations,” said interim superintendent Dr. Monifa McKnight.  “I am grateful for her service, her leadership, and her guidance and will miss her wisdom and partnership.”

Mrs. O’Neill was first elected to the Board of Education in 1998 and is the longest serving Board member in the history of Montgomery County Public Schools. Mrs. O’Neill was currently serving her sixth four-year term on the Board. She had served as president five times and vice president six times. Mrs. O’Neill was most recently serving as chairperson of the Board of Education’s Policy Management Committee and was a member of the Fiscal Management Committee.

Mrs. O’Neill was past president of the Maryland Association of Boards of Education (MABE) and past co-chair of the Washington Area Boards of Education. She  served on numerous advisory committees for education-related issues, including the Maryland Blue Ribbon Panel on Teen Pregnancy and the Maryland Comparable HSA Task Force. In 2006, she was named by then-Governor Robert Ehrlich to represent MABE on the Task Force on School Safety. Prior to joining the Board, Mrs. O’Neill was a longtime PTA activist in the Walt Whitman cluster and served in various volunteer and leadership roles. She served as the vice chair for the Montgomery County Public Schools Educational Foundation and was a member of the Foundation’s grants committee.

In 2015, Mrs. O’Neill was named one of the 100 Most Powerful Women by Washingtonian magazine. Mrs. O’Neill was a graduate of Walter Johnson High School and held a degree in Social Science from Southern Methodist University. Survivors include her husband, Rick, and two daughters, Jenny and Melissa, who are graduates of MCPS, as well as two grandchildren and her sister.  Services have not been planned at this time, but information will be shared in the coming days.


On Wednesday, an appeals court judge ruled that murder charges against Catherine Hoggle, a mother accused of killing two of her children in 2014, will not be dismissed.

Background of the case can be seen below, per the Maryland Court of Special Appeals: Catherine Hoggle is the mother of Sarah Hoggle and Jacob Hoggle. According to the State, the two children were last seen in the care of their mother on September 7, 2014. At that time, Sarah was five years old, and Jacob was three years old. Hoggle was arrested three days after the children disappeared. Officers interrogated her for several hours, but they did not learn the location of the children.

Within one week of the arrest, the State filed a series of charging documents against Hoggle in the District Court of Maryland for Montgomery County. First, the State charged her with two counts of neglect of a minor. Next, the State charged her with one count of obstruction of justice. Finally, the State charged her with two counts of abduction or unlawful detention of a child by a relative. An evaluator from the Health Department examined Hoggle, who had a history of schizophrenia. The evaluator concluded that Hoggle was incompetent to stand trial at that time.

On January 10, 2015, the district court found that Hoggle was incompetent to stand trial and ordered that she be committed at Clifton T. Perkins Hospital. As required by statute, the district court periodically reviewed the issue of Hoggle’s competency. On nine occasions from the date of commitment until September 2017, the district court found that Hoggle remained incompetent and that she continued to meet the criteria for commitment.

At a separate proceeding in March 2016, about 18 months after the initiation of the 3 misdemeanor case in the district court, a prosecutor informed the court that the State planned to charge Hoggle with the murders of her two children. The prosecutor said that the State had decided to delay the indictment so that the grand jury might be available, if needed, to investigate the disappearance of the two children. According to the prosecutor, once the State obtained an indictment, the State would no longer be able to use the grand jury as an investigative entity.

On September 14, 2017, the State dismissed all charges against Hoggle in district court by entering a nolle prosequi. On the same day, the State obtained an indictment charging her in the Circuit Court for Montgomery County with first-degree murder of Sarah Hoggle and first-degree murder of Jacob Hoggle.

More information about the case can be seen here.


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