Lehigh Valley

Coroner: Elderly man committed suicide during standoff in Bethlehem

Frank Story, 90, died in his apartment after firing shots

Coroner: Elderly man took own life during standoff

BETHLEHEM, Pa. - A police standoff ended early Thursday with the death of an elderly man in Bethlehem. Police said the man fired shots at them before taking his own life.

The incident began around 8 p.m. Wednesday in 1300 block of Winters Avenue, just off Schoenersville Road in Bethlehem, Lehigh Co.

Police responded to a report of a 90-year-old man who was threatening to shoot himself with a handgun.

Officials were able to safely evacuate Frank Story's 92-year-old wife and the couple's neighbors.

Police kept trying to get Story to surrender, with no luck, according to court documents.

Around 12:15 a.m. Thursday, Story fired the first of numerous shots, aimed from his apartment toward various outside locations, and at least one was aimed at members of the Bethlehem Police Emergency Response Team.

Several other shots were heard coming from the apartment that hit structures, vehicles and other objects in the area, according to documents.

By 2:45 a.m., Story, a World War II veteran and retired Bethlehem Steel worker, was found dead inside his home. His death was ruled a suicide.

"Everyone is in shock a little bit," said Debbie O'Donnell, a close friend, adding that the couple, married more than 66 years, didn't have children but loved animals. "He always fed bread to rabbits and squirrels got peanuts."

Several neighbors said Story had severe heath problems.

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