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Vandergrift Man Headed To Altoona To Send Message About Clergy Sex Abuse

VANDERGRIFT (KDKA) -- Robert Mizic, 45, of Vandergrift will be joining several other abuse victims and drive to Altoona Tuesday evening.

They will be protesting outside a church there, where the local bishop will be holding a prayer service for victims of sexual abuse.

Mizic says he was abused by a priest both sexually and physically decades ago while growing up outside Philadelphia.

The priest who abused him, he told KDKA-TV's Ralph Iannotti, never apologized or was never prosecuted, even though he went to police to complain not long after the incidents took place.

Mizic came out publicly several weeks ago about the abuse he suffered, just after a statewide grand jury reported widespread abuse of perhaps hundreds of children in the Altoona-Johnstown Diocese, by as many as 50 priests and others.

Investigators say the alleged wrong-doing was covered up by at least two former Altoona-area clergymen to protect the image of the church.

Mizic said, "We will not be loud Tuesday night, we'll hold signs to get the message out. We need justice, not just apologies from the Catholic Church."

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Mizic said he didn't want other children to have to experience what he went through.

"In the end, it's about the future," he said. "It's about kids that are being injured and harmed by priests, and by others."

Mizic now lives in Vandergrift, Westmoreland County.

The Johnstown-area nishop is holding three services for sexual abuse victims this week, the first one was Monday night in Johnstown.

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