- The Washington Times - Monday, October 21, 2002

NORTH DAKOTA
Young eagle makes return to wild
MOFFIT A bald eagle spread its wings and soared over Long Lake National Wildlife Refuge in a triumphant return to the wild, five months after a storm blew the young eaglet from its nest along the Missouri River.
The Dakota Zoo in Bismarck cared for the bird for the summer, isolating it from people as much as possible to ensure a successful return to the wild.
"It's a neat experience to watch such a magnificent bird take off into the sky," said William G. Myers III, Interior Department solicitor general, who released the eagle over the weekend.

TEXAS
Graham, musicians draw record crowd
IRVING Billy Graham and contemporary Christian musicians drew a Texas Stadium record crowd on the third night of the Metroplex Mission.
An estimated 82,000 people attended the event, which included a 30-minute message from Mr. Graham and musical performances by Jars of Clay, Kirk Franklin and dc talk, ministry spokesman Larry Ross said.
"It was unbelievable the best behaved young people I've ever seen," said Bruce Hardy, general manager of the stadium where football's Dallas Cowboys play.

CALIFORNIA
Sailor survives fall from aircraft carrier
SAN DIEGO A sailor blown off the flight deck of the aircraft carrier USS Constellation by a jet blast was rescued Saturday after spending seven hours in the ocean off Baja California.
"We were not too optimistic about his survival," said the pilot of the rescue helicopter, Lt. Cmdr. Matt Sandberg of San Diego.
In a ship-to-shore telephone interview from the Constellation, Lt. Cmdr. Sandberg said the survival time in the estimated 62-degree water is 4 hours and that he didn't expect to see Michael Harris raise his arm in greeting when he spotted the rescue craft.

FLORIDA
Catholic diocese installs new bishop
PALM BEACH A church leader known for combating sexual misconduct by clergy was installed over the weekend as bishop of the Roman Catholic Diocese of Palm Beach, where two predecessors resigned amid scandals.
Bishop Sean Patrick O'Malley was installed before more than 1,800 people, including 200 clergy members, 14 bishops and the papal nuncio, the Vatican's top representative in the United States.

HAWAII
Gubernatorial race puts state in spotlight
HONOLULU To gauge how important the race for Hawaii governor is on the mainland, look at who's being booked for fund-raisers and rallies in the weeks before the Nov. 5 election.
For the Republicans, Environmental Protection Agency administrator and former New Jersey Gov. Christie Whitman hits town this week on behalf of gubernatorial nominee Linda Lingle.

ILLINOIS
Forest Service sued over reports
CARBONDALE A conservation group has filed a federal lawsuit accusing the Forest Service of illegally withholding reports on the health of two national forests where logging and forest management have been in dispute.

KENTUCKY
Highway yields to pioneer path
MIDDLESBORO Politicians, history buffs and a few hundred spectators gathered at a notch in the Allegheny Mountains known as the Cumberland Gap on Saturday to celebrate the unbuilding of a highway.
They came to dedicate the newly restored Wilderness Road, a footpath through the Gap traveled first by American Indians and marked out in 1775 by famed frontiersman Daniel Boone.
Located at the point where Kentucky, Virginia and Tennessee meet, the route served as a gateway for westbound pioneers but evolved in modern times into a dangerous stretch of pavement for drivers.

LOUISIANA
West Nile virus infects four dogs
NEW ORLEANS Four dogs with encephalitis symptoms had the West Nile virus, state officials said in one of the first signs the disease may be becoming more widespread in animals.
Three of the dogs died, state veterinarian Martha Littlefield said. They had symptoms that included seizures, trouble walking, "stargazing" and flinching at a gentle touch.
The virus may not have caused the disease, but veterinarians should consider West Nile a possible cause of brain or central nervous system trouble in dogs, Miss Littlefield said.

MISSISSIPPI
Town grieves deaths from mobile home fire
TCHULA This Mississippi Delta town grieved yesterday for six children who died in a mobile home fire, and the mayor pleaded for assistance to improve housing conditions in the county Mississippi's poorest.
A memorial service was held yesterday afternoon near the charred frame of the mobile home recently rented by Angela Williams for her family. Three of her four children and her sister's three children apparently died from smoke inhalation in the fire Saturday.

MONTANA
Actor attends preview of haunted house
WHITEHALL Bill Pullman wasn't the attraction; it was the butcher's room, witch's kitchen, electric chair and corpses.
Mr. Pullman, a 48-year-old actor who starred in 1996's "Independence Day," was among those invited to a sneak preview of a haunted house at an old hotel.
"I tell you, someone grabbed the calf of my leg when I was in there, and I wasn't expecting that," said Mr. Pullman, who has a ranch nearby.

NEBRASKA
Football commentator meets old friends
KEARNEY John Madden's fear of flying has reunited him with some old friends.
The Monday Night Football commentator, who refuses to fly and goes from game to game in a custom-made bus called the "Madden Cruiser," first met the Kimple family in Kearney in 1990. He was photographed signing an autograph for them, and the shot made it into Sports Illustrated.
On Friday Mr. Madden was in Kearney again, and Kerry Kimple spotted the bus outside the Skeeter Barnes restaurant. Mr. Kimple found him in the restaurant, asked whether he had time to go get that old Sports Illustrated so he could sign it, and "I was out the door."

NEW MEXICO
Mayor will return donations from PAC
ALBUQUERQUE Mayor Martin Chavez said last week that he will repay "every penny" he received from a political action committee that paid more than $30,000 for travel and other expenses for him and his family.
Mr. Chavez said he regretted the controversy over his use of funds for the committee, which included donations from city employees and companies that do business with the city.
The committee, known as ABQPAC, was set up after Mr. Chavez took office in December and has raised about $111,000 from real estate and construction companies, city contractors and city employees.

OKLAHOMA
Sheen helps center mark end of campaign
TULSA Martin Sheen took a break from playing president on the TV series "The West Wing" to help a substance-abuse treatment center celebrate the end of its $5 million fund-raising campaign.
Money for the 12&12 facility will go toward expanding the residential-treatment program to about 350 beds. June Ross, executive director, said renovations will start in January and take a year.

PENNSYLVANIA
Investigation begun in trapped-miners case
SOMERSET State prosecutors are conducting a criminal investigation into the accident that trapped nine men underground for more than three days, the attorney general said.
In an article published yesterday in the Pittsburgh Tribune-Review, Attorney General Mike Fisher confirmed that his office has been investigating the accident July 24 at the Quecreek Mine in Somerset, about 55 miles southeast of Pittsburgh.

VERMONT
Study records higher mercury levels
BURLINGTON A study of Californians who loaded their lunch and dinner menus with fish shows that 89 percent wound up with elevated mercury levels in their bodies.
The research, presented during the weekend by San Francisco internist Dr. Jane Hightower at a symposium on environmental health in Vermont, is one of the first studies to document mercury levels in Americans who eat more fish than the Environmental Protection Agency recommends.

WASHINGTON
Boy found dead; mother hospitalized
MARYSVILLE A boy was found dead in a motel room, and his mother was treated at a hospital after an incident police described as an attempted murder-suicide.
Police were called to the City Center Motel about 2 p.m. Saturday after the manager discovered the body of the boy and found the mother unconscious.
"Speculation suggests that it was possibly homicide and an attempted suicide," Marysville Police Commander Rob Lamoreaux told Seattle TV station KING. The station reported that the mother had self-inflicted wounds to the neck and wrist.

WISCONSIN
Inmate mistakenly freed from prison
MILWAUKEE A man convicted of violating a restraining order was released from prison a year early after his file was mixed up with those of other inmates slated to be freed, officials said.
Five sheriff's officials were suspended, and a deputy inspector was stripped of his command over the mistake, which led to the release of Dennis Lee Eaton, 39, during the weekend.
Eaton's file said he was scheduled for release Oct. 19, 2003, and the officials let him out exactly one year early, Deputy Inspector Sherry Warichak said.

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