Marianne Orris Kasch grew up in Seneca. Her mom Beth Orris is a well known community leader of song having taught chorus for years and leading the Venango Chorus. Marianne graduated from Cranberry and went to a fairly local college at Westminster.
Back in the early 2000s she met a German man named Christoph Kasch who was in a America as an exchange counselor near Butler. While at that camp he befriended Igor Krypa from Ukraine. They became fast friends.
Christoph married Marianne and they now live in Germany raising their family. Igor went back to Ukraine to become a Neurosurgeon and is also raising a family The Kasch's were in the process of fixing up a property they owned in Germany to start a bed and breakfast when another, more important need for the place came to light.
The war in Ukraine from an invading Russia.
Their friend Igor wanted his family safe and sent them, along with a friend's family to Germany to stay with the Kasch's who accepted them willingly with open arms. Seven Ukraine refugees have a safe harbor in these trying times in part to one of our own from northwest Pennsylvania.
The painting sold for 175 Euros which equals around 185 dollars.
This chance encounter in Butler Pennsylvania 20 years ago has brought this story from across the globe into some perspective that we're not all that far apart.
Two great friends are able to help each other in some big way. Igor still lives in Ukraine, but knows his family is safe, in part to someone he met here in northwest Pennsylvania.