- The Washington Times - Monday, April 21, 2003

FLORIDA
Volunteers help stranded whales
BIG PINE KEY Volunteers worked yesterday to save seven critically ill pilot whales that became stranded in shallow water off the Florida Keys.
"Right now, we're keeping them supported, making sure they're able to breathe and doing what we can to keep them comfortable," said Laura Engleby of the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration Marine Fisheries Service.
The whales were among 28 that beached themselves Friday. Ten of them are unaccounted for and may have swam back into deep water. Seven died, and four others were euthanized, Miss Engleby said.

NEW JERSEY
Car injures 13 in crowd
JERSEY CITY A car accelerated out of control and plowed into a crowd exiting a Jehovah's Witnesses assembly Saturday, injuring 13 persons, police said.
The accident happened when a man waiting for his wife to exit the gathering was asked to move his car, officials said.
Henry Clax, 78, did not realize he had the car in reverse and backed into a car parked behind him. He apparently panicked, put his car in drive and accelerated, striking three lampposts and then the crowd.

CONNECTICUT
Ocean explorer gets federal grant
MYSTIC Ocean explorer Robert Ballard has received a $500,000 federal grant to help expand his high-tech system for giving people a glimpse of what's under the sea.
Satellites will soon beam the underwater exploits of Mr. Ballard and crews across the globe.
"We can, through this technology, take millions to the ocean floor," Mr. Ballard said.
Mr. Ballard, who discovered the wreck of the Titanic, said the first transmission will be in July, broadcasting images and data from ships and submersibles exploring the Black Sea.

GEORGIA
First armed pilots ready for flights
GLYNCO There is a minuscule chance, since a new law took effect yesterday, that a pilot on a commercial flight will be carrying a gun.
Saturday was graduation day for the first 44 pilots in a course at a federal law-enforcement training center. Additional pilots will complete their training in the weeks to come, meaning a gradual increase in the number of gun-toting pilots in airliner cockpits.
The pilots went through a week of classes, tests, drills and target practice required before they could be sworn in as federal flight-deck officers.

HAWAII
Tropical paradise is on drug-war front lines
OAHU When 20-year-old Christopher Aki confessed to the beating death of his girlfriend's 11-year-old half sister, shock washed over the tropical vacation paradise of Hawaii.
But the gruesome killing came as no surprise to the weary warriors on the front lines of the islands' fight against an old scourge that is battering large U.S. cities and others worldwide: the drug crystal methamphetamine, which Aki admitted to using the day before the killing.
Hawaii was one of the first places in the United States where the drug took hold.

KENTUCKY
Hatfields, McCoys claim victory
PIKEVILLE Descendants of both the Hatfields and the McCoys are claiming victory in a sequel to their famed clash of the late 1800s.
The feuding families were at odds about access to a hillside cemetery that holds the remains of six McCoys, including three who were tied to papaw trees and executed by the Hatfields in 1882.
A judge has ruled that McCoy descendants have a right to visit the cemetery, despite the objections of a Hatfield descendant who owns the land around it.
"The McCoys win," said Joseph Justice, a lawyer and McCoy descendant who represented cousins Bo McCoy of Waycross, Ga., and Ron McCoy of Durham, N.C. "The McCoys have access to the cemetery now."
John Vance, a Hatfield heir who owns the land and had put up "no trespassing" signs on the driveway leading to the graves, also claimed victory, because the judge's ruling barred the cemetery from being opened to commercial exploitation.

MASSACHUSETTS
Strip club recruits at school job fair
MASHPEE A club known for nude dancers tried recruiting workers at a high school job fair this week before embarrassed school officials asked its representatives to leave.
Junior Bethany Logan said Mashpee High School students were surprised and amused to see a sign for Zachary's Pub briefly displayed at the fair.
"It's a place in town that people are ashamed of, not a place where you want to see anyone from our school work," she told the Cape Cod Times.
Zachary's registered for the job fair under another name, Diamond Real Estate, which is club owner Richard Halpern's other business.

NEW YORK
Asthma affects 1 in 4 Harlem children
NEW YORK One in 4 children in the city's Harlem section have asthma, double the rate researchers expected and one of the highest neighborhood rates in the nation, a study found.
Dr. Stephen Nicholas, Harlem Hospital Center's director of pediatrics who led the study, said the effort to test every child in a 24-block area found that 25.5 percent of 1,400 children younger than 13 had asthma.

NORTH CAROLINA
Bus route closed after shootings
DURHAM Officials shut part of one bus route, and guards were hired to ride other routes after gunfire damaged three municipal buses in three weeks.
On Wednesday, several shots damaged windows on a Durham Area Transit Authority bus carrying four persons including the driver, police said. The previous week, a gunman reached through the window of a bus with 21 persons inside and opened fire, damaging windows and the engine.

OKLAHOMA
Hundreds remember bombing victims
OKLAHOMA CITY Families of the 168 persons killed in the bombing of the Murrah federal building carried flowers and mementos Saturday to the spot where their loved ones died eight years earlier and gave a standing ovation for the men and women fighting the war on terrorism.
Several hundred people packed the First United Methodist Church for the ceremony, which included 168 seconds of silence at 9:02 a.m., the time Timothy McVeigh's truck bomb exploded outside the building's day care center April 19, 1995.

PENNSYLVANIA
Fair group buys coffeepot building
BEDFORD The future is perking up for one of the country's last restaurant buildings shaped like a coffeepot.
The Coffee Pot will be sold to the Bedford County Fair Association for $1 to house fair memorabilia.
Lincoln Highway Heritage Park Corridor, which works to save roadside attractions, will pay about $80,000 to restore and move the building to the fairgrounds.
The Coffee Pot building, a stout brick structure with a concrete handle and spout, was built in 1927.

RHODE ISLAND
Fire victim leaving hospital
PROVIDENCE Kerrie Rock starts to laugh when she thinks about how good it will feel to wear shoes again, instead of those little socks with padded, no-slip bottoms.
She's been wearing those for two months while being treated for burns she suffered in the Station nightclub fire that killed 99 persons and injured about 200 others Feb. 20.
Miss Rock, 28, has undergone two skin-graft surgeries for burns she sustained on her back, hands and forearms.

TENNESSEE
Singer awarding college scholarships
PIGEON FORGE Country singer Dolly Parton will award four high school seniors in her native Sevier County $15,000 college scholarships.
Miss Parton, who graduated from Sevier County High School in 1964, started the Dolly Parton Scholarship in August 2000. With support from other sponsors and her Dollywood Foundation, scholarships have been added for students at Seymour High School, Pigeon Forge High School and Gatlinburg-Pittman High School.

TEXAS
Money raised for twins' surgery
RICHARDSON Fund-raisers appear to have surpassed the $125,000 they'd hoped to raise to offset surgery costs to separate 22-month-old Egyptian twins joined at the crown of their heads.
World Craniofacial Foundation director Sue Blackwood said Friday that about $83,000 in pledges and donations had been received for twins Mohamed and Ahmed Ibrahim.
A fund-raiser at Dallas Central Mosque raised $70,000 more in pledges and donations.

WEST VIRGINIA
College will seek tuition increase
BLUEFIELD Bluefield State College plans to propose the maximum allowable tuition and fee increase this week to the West Virginia Higher Education Policy Commission.
The college's Board of Governors determined late last week to ask for a 9.5 percent increase for its four-year degree program, moving tuition to about $1,420 per semester.
The school will also request a 4.75 percent increase for the technical and community college program, moving its tuition to about $1,250 a semester.

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