- The Washington Times - Monday, October 6, 2003


Illusionist still in critical condition

LAS VEGAS — Roy Horn, the illusionist of the Siegfried & Roy duo who was mauled by one of his tigers during a show at the MGM Mirage hotel, was able to communicate with doctors but still in critical condition and on a ventilator yesterday.

Officials said that even if Mr. Horn recovers, it’s not clear if he would ever be able to perform again.

MGM Mirage officials said yesterday it might be another day or two before doctors have a prognosis for Mr. Horn, 59, who was bitten in the neck and dragged off the stage. The performer underwent surgery late Friday and Saturday at University Medical Center.


Ranch marks 150th birthday

KINGSVILLE — The ranch considered the birthplace of American cattle-ranching marked its 150th birthday Saturday, holding its first livestock auction since 1988.

The 825,000-acre King Ranch, founded by steamboat operator Richard King in 1853, was built on the scruffy terrain loved by longhorn cattle.

“The King Ranch epitomizes Texas from its inception to our modern day,” said Gov. Rick Perry, who sat among the ranch’s shareholders at Saturday’s auction.


Former governor dies at 91

LITTLE ROCK — Former Arkansas Gov. Sid McMath, who had become a powerful prosecutor and the state’s leader by the age of 40, died at his home in Little Rock. He was 91.

Mr. McMath had been examined by doctors last week for an irregular heartbeat. He died late Saturday, son Phillip McMath said yesterday.

After serving in the military during World War II, Mr. McMath began a career in public service, becoming a prosecutor in Hot Springs and winning election to his first of two terms as governor in 1948.

“He was a young, progressive governor who had cleaned up Hot Springs and done real good things for Arkansas, real tolerant in race, and tried to do a lot for education and roads,” said Cal Ledbetter, professor emeritus of political science at the University of Arkansas at Little Rock.


Man retrieves stolen truck

CRESCENT CITY — When Joe Francis’ truck was stolen, he didn’t get mad. He just stole it back.

Mr. Francis was upset when the truck vanished from outside his work Monday — he didn’t have insurance to replace it.

Mr. Francis was on his way to Brookings, Ore., to buy a new car Tuesday when he spotted the purloined truck headed the other way. He swung around and followed. He trailed the truck until the driver parked at a home and went inside. Mr. Francis slipped into the truck and drove it away.

Mr. Francis quickly called the California Highway Patrol, and officers showed up to arrest a Folsom State Prison parolee.


Flights delayed for agent’s gun

DENVER — Up to a dozen flights were delayed and a concourse was sealed off over the weekend when an FBI agent reported his weapon and credentials missing. They were found 30 minutes later in a restaurant where he had eaten.

The agent, whose name was not released, apparently lost track of his bag when he left the restaurant to make a phone call, Transportation Security Administration spokesman Mike Fierberg said.

All planes at Concourse B gates were held after the agent alerted police, and passengers were not allowed to leave or enter the concourse, Mr. Fierberg said.


Yeager’s plane goes off runway

CLAYTON — A plane flown by famed test pilot Chuck Yeager went off a runway and into a ditch last week while taxiing after landing.

Mr. Yeager, 80, had a bump on his head but neither he nor his wife, Victoria, was seriously injured in the accident at Heaven’s Landing, said Mike Ciochetti Jr., developer of the new community built around a small airport.

Mr. Ciochetti said Mr. Yeager’s single-engine, two-seat military training plane was caught in a cross wind.

Heaven’s Landing is honoring Mr. Yeager, the first pilot to break the sound barrier, and other World War II aces by naming its streets after them.


Legislators tour crowded jail

HONOLULU — Several state legislators got a firsthand look at the crowded conditions during a tour of Oahu Community Correctional Center last week.

Senate Judiciary Chairman Colleen Hanabusa says she is concerned that overcrowding could leave the state liable to a federal lawsuit.

The jail was built to house 628 inmates in a cluster of modules, but now holds 1,130 inmates.


Foundation makes ‘genius grants’

CHICAGO — A woman who spent years documenting the civil strife in Sierra Leone and a gynecologist who pioneered treatments for victims of female genital mutilation are among this year’s recipients of “genius grants” from the MacArthur Foundation, officials said yesterday.

Corinne Dufka and Dr. Nawal Nour will each receive $500,000 to spend as they chose in recognition of their “exceptional originality in and dedication to their creative pursuits.”

The women are among two dozen “MacArthur Fellows” singled out by the philanthropical foundation for their achievements in disciplines ranging from ceramics to biophysics.


Newborn dies in shoe box

ST. PAUL — A newborn baby died late Thursday after its mother, a 14-year-old girl, apparently left the newborn in a shoe box in her room, police said.

Authorities were called to the girl’s house to check on the welfare of a newborn. There they found the baby already dead, police said.

Paramedics had been called to the house earlier in the evening when the teen complained of stomach pain, police said.

Paramedics determined the girl’s condition was not serious and told her mother to take the girl to the hospital. An hour later, police were called.

The girl told hospital officials that she had given birth and had placed the baby in a shoe box in her room, police told the Minneapolis-St. Paul Star Tribune.


Oldest American dies at 114

TRENTON, N.J. — Elena Slough, documented as the nation’s oldest person, died yesterday at the nursing home where her daughter had died three days before. She was 114 or 115, according to different sources.

Mrs. Slough died in her sleep at the Victoria Manor Nursing Home, where she and her 90-year-old daughter, Wanda Allen, lived, according to Judy Moudy, a supervisor at the Lower Township facility.

The Gerontology Research Group said Mrs. Slough was born on July 8, 1889, making her 114 years old at the time of her death. But Krista Rickards, director of marketing at Victoria Manor, said Mrs. Slough’s son had a 1930 document that listed his mother as being born in 1888, which would have made her 115.

What is not in dispute is that Mrs. Slough had been the oldest person in the United States since April, when Mary Dorothy Christian, born June 2, 1889, died in San Pablo, Calif.


Tiger, alligator share apartment

NEW YORK — A tiger and an alligator found in a Manhattan apartment were sent to an Ohio wildlife preserve yesterday while their owner recovered from bite wounds inflicted by the more-than-400-pound cat.

Police said Antoine Yates, 31, would face reckless endangerment charges after he gets out of a hospital in Philadelphia, where he fled. He was listed in good condition.

A team of animal control officers, police and Bronx Zoo workers removed the animals, both in good condition, from Mr. Yates’ fifth-floor apartment in a Harlem housing project on Saturday.


Town celebrates New York socialite

MEDORA — A century after her last visit to the rugged badlands of western North Dakota, Medora von Hoffman de Vallambrosa stepped off a horse-drawn carriage in the town that bears her name.

As she strolled into the ball in an elegant satin-and-velvet dress, Karen Nelson, dressed as Medora for the re-enactment Saturday, seemed every bit the New York socialite whose husband founded this town in the late 1800s.

She was met by about 150 others — most in period costume — who came to relive a 1903 ball Medora threw for Billings County during her final trip to what was then a rowdy Wild West town.

Medora, daughter of a Wall Street banker, married the Marquis de Mores in France in 1882, and the couple came to North Dakota to build a town and a meatpacking plant, but the venture failed.

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