Monday, August 24, 2009


‘Extreme Makeover’ gets down to work

The “Extreme Makeover” TV show is in the Washington area to tape two projects in one week.

Crews and volunteers who arrived Saturday will transform the Fishing School, a nonprofit youth development organization in Northeast Washington, and also will rebuild the home of Nikema and Tamara Tripp in Hyattsville.

Derek LaVallee, a local spokesman for the show, said the new school will be three times bigger. He said both the Fishing School and the Tripp home will be built with energy-efficient features after their demolition on Sunday.

Burch Builders Group, which has offices in Warrenton and Alexandria, and Vienna’s G&M Contracting are donating their services to the projects.

The extremeness of the makeovers will be revealed Saturday.



Van kills woman on way to church

Anne Arundel County Police said a woman was struck and killed by a hit-and-run driver while on her way to church Saturday evening.

Police said Mary Collins, 59, of Glen Burnie, was standing on the sidewalk at the intersection of Baltimore-Washington Boulevard and Oak Lane NW when she was struck by a minivan. Police said the driver of the minivan lost control for unknown reasons and drove over the curb onto the sidewalk.

Miss Collins was taken to a hospital, where she died.

Police said the driver, Matthew Norwood, 26, of Linthicum, did not stop after the collision. Officers found Mr. Norwood and the vehicle later in the parking lot of a convenience store.


Birthday party guest assaulted, shot

Howard County Police said a man was shot after being attacked at a birthday party at a Veterans of Foreign Wars hall in Jessup.

Police said Daveonne Clay, 20, of Landover, was found a short distance from the VFW hall on Montevideo Road after the shooting was reported about 1 a.m. Sunday. He had been shot twice in the torso and was taken to a trauma center, where he was treated and released within several hours.

Police think a group of people assaulted Mr. Clay at the party, and the young man was running away when someone fired several shots.

The suspect is thought to be age 18 to 20.


Lightning blamed for apartment fire

Fire department officials said lightning caused a fire early Saturday in a garden-style apartment building in the 1900 block of Rochelle Avenue. The blaze did about $500,000 damage.

Heavy smoke was coming from the roof of the building when firefighters arrived, responding to an alarm about 5 a.m. The residents were evacuated and firefighters battled the blaze from inside, WJLA (Channel 7) reported.

Additional firefighters were called in a second alarm. The fire was under control in about 45 minutes.

None of the residents was hurt, although one firefighter was taken to a hospital for treatment of a shoulder injury. The Red Cross and the management of the apartment building were helping find shelter for those displaced.


Shipbuilding firm plans new facility

Chesapeake Shipbuilding is planning to build another prefabrication facility on its property on the Wicomico River.

Company officials said the facility will be the third it has built in the past two years.

Company spokesman Charlie Robertson said the facility is to be built on the site where an old building was torn down Wednesday and will include overhead cranes and automated equipment to accommodate the construction of hull sections for cruise ships and tugboats.

Mr. Robertson said the future looks bright for building tugboats and that Chesapeake is expanding and hiring new staff despite the recession.



University president’s home demolished

Crews tore down the off-campus residence of the Old Dominion University president last week. It had been vacant since Roseann Runte left the presidency in 2008.

The school’s foundation is building a $2.2 million, 5,400-square-foot home for the president that is expected to be completed next year.

The university decided to demolish it and build a new residence after surveys showed that the home did not meet code requirements and needed an overhaul.


Committee to start search for president

The search committee of the University of Virginia’s Board of Visitors has scheduled its first meeting for Monday as it begins to select the next president of the university.

A series of public forums is being held through Sept. 29 to aid the committee in its selection. Participants will be asked to identify the university’s challenges and opportunities over the next 10 years and what qualifications and leadership skills they think the next president should have.

After leading the university for 20 years, John T. Casteen III plans to step down as president on Aug. 1 next year.

From wire dispatches and staff reports

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