The Florida Times Union

Articles from April 24, 2002

2 Help Cops Nab Suspect, Provide Role Models
Byline: Sandy Strickland, County Line staff writer When they saw a cop scuffling with a burglary suspect, two Chimney Lakes residents gave their children a lesson in civic responsibility. With their youngsters looking on, they tried to help the...
3 Girls See Mickey for Earned Dreams
Byline: Allison Schaefers, Nassau Neighbors staff writer Traditionally, schools recognize students for the three "R"s, reading, writing and arithmetic. But the Nassau County School Board recently recognized some students for the four "C"s: curiosity,...
78 Teens Honored as 'Students of Character'
Seventy-eight St. Johns County students were scheduled to be honored yesterday for their character at the second annual American Youth Character Awards banquet at First Coast Technical Institute. Honorees included 4 percent of the junior class from...
ABET Ready to Laugh about Playwright's Family in Crisis
Byline: Mark Faulkner, Shorelines correspondent It's fitting that the Atlantic Beach Experimental Theatre should wrap up its 10th anniversary season with Labor Day. Just like the protagonist in A.R. Gurney's comedic exploration of family, art versus...
Angry Robinson Leaves JU Behind for Pros
Byline: Teneshia Wright, Times-Union sports writer Now that Travis Robinson has left Jacksonville University to pursue an NBA career, the gag order Dolphins coach Hugh Durham placed on him during the season is no longer in effect. And Robinson...
Around the Bend Bus Driver Named Employee of the Year
Byline: Dan Scanlan, Times-Union staff writer St. Johns County school bus driver Betty Bass was named St. Johns County's 2002 School-Related Employee of the Year during the April 16 School Board meeting. Bass has been a bus driver for the St....
Autism a Puzzle for Parents Fernandina: Family, Friends Help Pieces Fit for Afflicted Kids
Byline: Allison Schaefers, Nassau Neighbors staff writer In many ways, Stephanie Willaford, 16, is almost like every other kid. She likes to gather with friends from her Girl Scout troop to talk about boys and other secret teen stuff. She loves...
'Blue Room' Avoids 'Peep Show' Play Tackles Feelings in Sex
Byline: Mark Faulkner, Shorelines correspondent Players By-The-Sea plans to show audiences that The Blue Room reveals more than just Nicole Kidman. Yes, it's the play that received quite a bit of media attention because of Kidman's skin-baring...
Bolles Girls in 2A Tennis Title Hunt
Byline: Jeff Elliott, Times-Union sports writer The Bolles girls tennis team pins its hopes for a state championship on three remaining singles players and the squad's No. 2 doubles team as the Lady Bulldogs finished the first day of competition...
Brunswick Library's Work Stalls Subcontractors Not Getting Paid
Byline: Terry Dickson, Times-Union staff writer BRUNSWICK -- Work has stopped on the $3.3 million renovation of the Brunswick library after subcontractors said the general contractor was no longer paying them, library officials said. Work was...
Bubba Begins PGA Grind in Greensboro
Byline: Michael DiRocco, Times-Union sports writer There's no telling what kind of professional golfer Bubba Dickerson will be. But if confidence is any factor, then the game's elite players soon might have a new peer. Dickerson, who is making...
Carving out a Dream Art Adds Whimsy to San Marco
Byline: John Carter, Times-Union staff writer The ongoing revitalization of San Marco Square took a flight of fancy last week when a bronze sculpture was unveiled on the east side of the historic shopping district. The 10-foot-tall sculpture,...
Cecil Team Trying to Win Boeing Deal
Byline: Karen Brune Mathis, Times-Union senior business writer DaimlerChrysler is Project Bluebell, and now we understand that The Boeing Co. is Project Bumblebee. Cecil Commerce Center representatives want to recruit both to the former Cecil...
Celebrating the Leaf Hempfest Arrests Total 18
Byline: Maggie FitzRoy, Shorelines correspondent Undercover police officers arrested 18 people Saturday during the Jacksonville Hempfest, a festival espousing the legalization of marijuana, at the SeaWalk Pavilion in Jacksonville Beach. Ten people...
Children's Advocate Makes Stern Warning
Byline: Beth Reese Cravey, County Line staff writer Only by increasing the attention and funding paid to children's issues will Florida get control of juvenile crime, crowded courtrooms and jails, said Jack Levine, a noted children's advocate. ...
Church Clears Way for Community Center
Byline: Dan Scanlan, Times-Union staff writer A church that has occupied one of Mandarin's busiest street corners for the past 21 years will soon be rubble, as St. Joseph's Catholic Church clears away the unused sanctuary to make way for a two-story...
Churchill Downs Visitors Eat Up Kentucky Flavor
Byline: Joanne McClellan Egnor, County Line staff writer Many transplanted Meadowbrook residents are from West Virginia, Kentucky and Tennessee and this time of year sends us scrambling for our families' handed-down recipes for mint juleps. The...
City Opposes Bad Behavior on Balconies Clubs Deny Crowds Throw Bottles, but Permits at Risk
Byline: Caren Burmeister, Shorelines staff writer The owners of two downtown Jacksonville Beach nightclubs have been ordered to stop customers from throwing bottles from the balconies and other unruly behavior or the city will close the upper-level...
Community Notebook Wesconnett Elementary Will Celebrate Its 75th Birthday
Byline: Sandy Strickland, Times-Union staff writer Wesconnett Elementary School will celebrate its 75th birthday with lots of old pictures, a neighborhood combo, covered-dish dinner, classroom tour and address exchange time. The Westside school's...
Concerns Voiced at Meeting
Byline: Dan Scanlan, Times-Union sports writer They came slowly and steadily over the three-hour open house, 115 Southside residents interested in finding out how bad experts say the intersection of Baymeadows Road and Southside Boulevard might...
Could Jimmy's Next Draft Job Come as GM?
Byline: Mark Woods, Times-Union sports columnist It's hard to pick a moment that best summed up the absurdity of the NFL Draft weekend. But if forced to select one, I go with Sunday afternoon, when ESPN prepared to switch its coverage over to...
County: Code Official in Violation Callahan: Higginbotham Home Said Built without Permits
Byline: Amelia A. Hart, Nassau Neighbors staff writer Nassau County's building official is urging the county's code enforcement agency to throw the book at Callahan Building Inspector Tommy Higginbotham. According to Building Official Whitey...
CSX Creates Path for Next Company Chief Action May Signal Headquarters Move
Byline: Christopher Calnan, Times-Union staff writer Yesterday's appointment of CSX Transportation President Michael Ward to the parent company's board of directors paves the way for Ward's ascension to CSX Corp.'s top position and the corporate...
Day Has Animal Magnetism Event Rallies Behind Planet
Byline: Tracy Spengler, County Line correspondent Warm breezes and sunshine provided an ideal backdrop for Saturday's ninth annual Clay County Earth Day celebration at the Clay County fairgrounds in Green Cove Springs. Hosted by the Clay County...
Douglas Anderson Grad in Washington
Byline: Cindy Holifield, Times-Union staff writer THREE CHEERS -- Megan Soliah has been selected by the John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts in Washington for an internship this winter and spring as part of the Center's Vilar Institute...
Event Defines a Hero Effort Avoids Typical Celebrities
Byline: Sandy Strickland, Times-Union staff writer The students clustered around the piece of charred rubble, stroking it almost reverently. Their reactions ranged from anger to awe. "It makes me angry to see this and think somebody has that...
Ex-Cop's Lawyers Renew Bid for Change of Venue
Byline: Jim Schoettler, Times-Union staff writer Attorneys for ex-Jacksonville cop Karl Waldon are asking a judge to move his murder trial out of the city for a second time because of pretrial publicity, which they suggest could be influenced by...
Ex-Sailor Guilty in Child Sex Case He Draws 20-Year Sentence, No Parole
Byline: Gordon Jackson, Times-Union staff writer WOODBINE -- A former Kings Bay sailor was sentenced to 20 years in prison, without parole, after he pleaded guilty to repeatedly molesting the stepson of a shipmate over a two-year period. Investigators,...
Family Questions Road in Man's Death
Byline: R. Michael Anderson, County Line staff writer At 31, David H. Cowart decided it was time to put surfing and snowboarding aside and grow up, finish college, maybe get married and settle down, relatives said. But he didn't get the chance....
Fast Play 'Half-Life' Back with a New Twist
Byline: Robert McGinty, Times-Union sports writer Many of the best first-person games of the last couple of years owe quite a bit of inspiration to Half-Life, one of the first PC games to incorporate theatrical elements into a challenging storyline....
FCCJ Honors Maintenance Manager Who Gets Job Done
Byline: Amelia A. Hart, Nassau Neighbors staff writer Many people take courses at Florida Community College at Jacksonville to learn new skills on their way to a new job. Randy Harden also is studying at the college to improve his job skills....
For Craft, It's a Grin-Win Situation
Byline: Vito Stellino, Times-Union sports writer Jason Craft's trademark is his smile. The Jaguars' young cornerback always seems to be smiling -- even when a coach is lecturing him. "I got in trouble a couple of times with [secondary coach]...
Foundation Created to Help with School Hilliard: Group Helps Where Others Can't
Byline: Amelia A. Hart, Nassau Neighbors staff writer Hilliard Middle-Senior High School has become the second public school in Nassau County with a private fund-raising foundation. The Hilliard Middle-Senior High School Foundation is part of...
Hospitals Invest in Nursing Program UNF to Receive $1.1 Million
Byline: Tia Mitchell, Times-Union staff writer In an unprecedented collaboration, eight Jacksonvillle area hospitals pledged to donate $1.1 million over the next five years to the School of Nursing at the University of North Florida. Hospital...
In Education
COMPUTER CLASSES Working with Florida Community College at Jacksonville's Betty P. Cook Nassau Center, both chambers of commerce in Nassau County are offering computer classes. A Word 2000 class will be from 6 to 9:30 p.m. May 7 and 9; cost is...
JU Administrator Proves She's Up to Challenge
Byline: Dan Scanlan, Times-Union staff writer Catherine Morgan says she likes a challenge. The Jacksonville University professor and administrator got it when she was diagnosed with breast cancer almost a year ago while in the middle of her own...
Judge Drops Charges Second Case to Get Dismissed
Byline: Dan Scanlan, Times-Union staff writer A second Bartram Trail High School student charged six months ago with planting a hoax bomb in a hallway and causing a schoolwide evacuation had his case dismissed by a St. Johns County judge April 10,...
Kids Learn Safety at Bicycle Rodeo
Byline: Christopher F. Aguilar, Shorelines staff writer Students at Mayport Elementary School learned a lesson Friday that could save their lives. Children from kindergarten through fifth grade participated in the school's ninth annual Bicycle...
Lawmakers Called Back to Session Budget, School Rules on Agenda for Next Week
Byline: Jim Saunders, Times-Union staff writer TALLAHASSEE -- After careful negotiations aimed at preventing another embarrassing spat, Florida lawmakers will start a special session next week to try to pass a $49 billion budget and rewrite the...
Legacy Is One of Right
Byline: Tonyaa Weathersbee, Times-Union columnist About three years after downtown Jacksonville became a roiling mass of whites wielding ax handles at blacks who tried to eat at segregated lunch counters, Mildred Pearson's white boss, Bob Myers,...
Legislature Defends Redistricting Plan
Byline: Jim Saunders, Times-Union staff writer TALLAHASSEE -- Fending off charges that lawmakers gerrymandered the maps to increase Republican power, the Florida House and Senate yesterday called on the state Supreme Court to approve a massive redistricting...
Library Offers Services for People of All Ages
Byline: Charlie Dixon, Special to the Times-Union Libraries are really great places. Places to find a book or two you want to read or look up a fact you need for a term paper. They're good for all sorts of things like that, and plenty more you may...
Man Bitten by Shark in St. Augustine
Byline: Shawna Sundin, Times-Union staff writer ST. AUGUSTINE BEACH -- It took a shark only seconds to bite into Robert Stinson's foot Saturday morning, but he'll spend the next several months dealing with the damage the animal left behind. The...
Man Needs Help Saving Historic Ship
Byline: Charlie Patton, Times-Union columnist Peter Stoudt is passionate about saving a little piece of Jacksonville's history. Which seems a little odd at first, since Stoudt, a former dean at the University of Virginia, doesn't live in Jacksonville...
Martin Reports Roush Improving
Unable to talk because of the tubes in his throat, NASCAR car owner Jack Roush grabbed a notepad and wrote "1-2-3-4." He showed the numbers to driver Mark Martin, indicating he wanted to know the finishing order in the last Winston Cup race. To...
Mission Hopes to Be Labor Source
Byline: John Carter, Times-Union staff writer The Clara White Mission's Ju'Coby Pittman wants to make the mission a key labor source for the downtown's emerging hospitality industry. That vision will draw a little more into focus at 10:30 am....
Morning Briefing
CLUB VOTES 63-1 TO UPDATE NAME Members of the Northside Businessmen's Club voted 63-1 yesterday to name the group the Northside Business Leaders. The almost 50-year-old club had tried to change its name two years ago but the effort failed. The...
Name That Tune Can You Pick out the Imposters in Our 'Guess the Fake Country Song' Game?
Byline: Nick Marino, Times-Union music writer When Kenny Chesney passed through town a couple of weeks ago, we got to thinking how She Thinks My Tractor's Sexy is a great name for a country song. Isn't that just perfect? Anyhow, we thought it...
Nassau Notes
PARKING DISCUSSION Fernandina Beach will host a meeting at 6 p.m. today in City Hall at Second and Ash Streets to discuss parking shortages downtown. The city is asking business, owners, residents and citizens for input on how to solve the problem....
Offensive Explosion Lifts Clay Softball
Byline: Bill Wesselhoff, Times-Union sports writer Clay exploded for eight runs in the bottom of the fifth inning to beat Gainesville 11-1 yesterday at Ridgeview in a game called by the mercy rule. The defending Class 4A champion Blue Devils...
Open Season for Jobs Coaches Eager to Test Rookies
Byline: Vito Stellino, Times-Union sports writer Jaguars coaches at this weekend's minicamp are going to be like kids unwrapping their presents on Christmas morning. They're anxious to get their first look at the 20 rookies -- nine drafted and...
Police Briefing Burger King Robbed by Masked Gunman
Byline: Dan Scanlan, Times-Union staff writer An undetermined amount of cash was stolen April 17 when a gunman forced his way into the Burger King restaurant at 11031 St. Augustine Road. Police said a 26-year-old employee was walking out the...
Police Briefing Diamond Merchant Robbed at Gunpoint
Byline: Dan Scanlan, Times-Union staff writer A 29-year-old New York City man was robbed at gunpoint April 17 of $200,000 worth of diamond jewelry while sitting in his car in the parking lot of the Holiday Inn at 9150 Baymeadows Road. Police...
Police Briefing Gas-Station Carjacking Yields Arrest
Byline: John Carter, Times-Union staff writer A 19-year-old woman was arrested at 1:30 p.m. Thursday in the 5700 block of Boqueron Court and charged with carjacking with a deadly weapon. Witnesses said the suspect and an unidentified man approached...
POLICE BRIEFS Employee Punched outside Bar
Following is a list of arrests and crimes reported by area police departments. ATLANTIC BEACH On Friday, police responded to a battery at Fly's Tie Irish Pub, 177 Sailfish Drive. An employee at the bar told police that a man came to the bar asking...
PRIVATE PROPERTY Gaining Ground
In 1981, a "temporary moratorium" was imposed on property around Lake Tahoe. It is still in effect. About 400 property owners in the area grew tired of awaiting the permission of politicians and bureaucrats to build homes on their own land, and...
Protecting Handicap Parking Council Wants Better Enforced Deterrents
Byline: R. Michael Anderson, County Line staff writer Members of the Clay County Council on Disability are doing their homework on a project aimed at getting law enforcement authorities to crack down on able-bodied people who illegally park in spaces...
Relay for Life Spells Hope to Those Fighting Cancer
Byline: Dede Webb, Special to the Times-Union The Northwest St. Johns County Chapter of the Relay for Life was held last weekend, with 37 teams entered and more than 450 people participating in the event. Sue Scovill, team recruiter chairwoman...
Restaurant Drops Plans to Build
Byline: Sandy Strickland, Times-Union staff writer A groundswell of opposition from Brierwood residents has led the Sonic Corp. to drop plans for a drive-in restaurant with roller-skating waitresses at Old Kings and Baymeadows roads. More than...
Review Board Balances Old, New
Byline: Caren Burmeister, Shorelines staff writer It's not always what you see, but what you don't see that shows how well the Ponte Vedra Beach Architectural Review Board is doing at keeping new construction in character with the community. ...
Sailor Quick to Come to Injured Mother's Aid
Byline: R. Michael Anderson, County Line staff writer Despite a driving rain and blustery winds swirling through Alltel Stadium one evening last month, Navy Cmdr. Curtis Stubbs and his two sons were having a good time at their first monster truck...
Sandalwood Tosses White Shuman's Relay Throw Seals 5-4 Win
Byline: Chase Goodbread, Times-Union sports writer Will Shuman took the relay throw and whirled, holding the game in his hand. Then, the Sandalwood freshman delivered like a senior. Shuman threw out White's Darrick Warren at home plate on...
School Map Now in Board Hands Attendance Zones to Be Set Soon
Byline: Beth Reese Cravey, County Line staff writer After nine months of studying, drawing, haggling and rethinking, the Clay County school district is weeks away from deciding controversial attendance boundaries for Fleming Island High School and...
School Zone Lakeside Service Effort Going to the Dogs, Cats
Byline: Toi Jefferson, County Line staff writer Lakeside Elementary School is participating in a schoolwide community service project that began April 8 and continues through tomorrow. The students are collecting pet food to donate to the Clay County...
Search for Day Cares by ZIP Code
Byline: Mike Clark, Times-Union Reader Advocate Dear Call Box: Could you tell me where I can obtain a list of day-care centers? -- O.M., Springfield Dear O.M. We called the Florida Department of Children and Families, the regulatory agency for...
Stars and Stripes End Tenure in Flames of Honor, Service Ceremony Leaves Some Burning Inside
Byline: Terry Dickson, Times-Union staff writer As she watched flames consume the stars and stripes of the American flag, Christine Strickland said it seemed wrong somehow. But ceremonial burnings like the one carried out by Brunswick's American...
State Senator Begins Run in New District
Byline: Terry Dickson, Times-Union staff writer With his home sitting in a new district designed by Democrats, state Sen. Tommie Williams, R-Lyons, is shopping for a new vehicle. "I'm fixing to buy one that gets better fuel mileage,'' Williams...
Students Cook in Contest Senior Wins Third Place in Category
Byline: Christopher F. Aguilar, Times-Union staff writer Karen Young's classroom at Sandalwood High School is not your typical classroom. It's a full-sized working kitchen with large restaurant-sized metal stoves and smaller home-style stoves,...
Students Earn Awards at '02 Science-Engineering Fair
Byline: Cindy Holifield, Staff writer Area students fared well at the 2002 Florida State Science and Engineering Fair held in Lakeland recently. Of 37 junior high and high school students from Nassau and Duval counties who competed, 27 received...
Student Volunteers Noted for Variety of Good Deeds
Byline: Beth Reese Cravey, County Line staff writer Six Clay County high school students were among 48 young people from across North Florida recently recognized for their volunteerism. The students were recognized April 12 during the Prudential...
Surfing Legend Always Spirited
Byline: Bill Longenecker, Shorelines columnist Bobby Simpson, a lawyer living in Paris with dual U.S. and French citizenship, originally is from Jacksonville and now owns an old house in Atlantic Beach. In 1961, he was the first person with whom...
Surf's Up -- If Barely -- for Southeast Regionals
Byline: Beau Halton, Shorelines editor The waves technically were ridable through the weekend at the Eastern Surfing Association's Southeast Regional Championships at Huguenot Memorial Park on Fort George Island. But contest organizers conceded...
Tapes: Time to Fire 4 Minutes
Byline: Christopher F. Aguilar, Shorelines staff writer Atlantic Beach commissioners and residents viewed a police videotape and heard 911 recordings Monday that showed firefighters took just over four minutes to respond to a fire that heavily damaged...
The Answer Line Popcorn Tree Not for Giving
Question: I have a popcorn tree in my yard that gives me lots of little baby plants. I love this tree, so I potted some of these up and was giving them to my neighbors but one told me this was against the law. Is this so? Answer from Clay County...
The County Line
Serving Clay County readers every Wednesday and Saturday. FLEMING ISLAND BUSINESS EXPO: The Clay County Chamber of Commerce's Southeast Business Council is sponsoring an Explore Fleming Island Day on Saturday to promote business in the Fleming...
Tomcats Notebook
Byline: Jeff Walker, Times-Union sports writer NESMITH OUT INDEFINITELY Former Raines standout Carl Nesmith is out indefinitely as he and the Tomcats' doctors try to figure out what's causing a tingling sensation in the arms and legs of the receiver/defensive...
TV Says He's Guilty, So Let's Play Ball
Byline: Anne Sponholtz, Times-Union correspondent Did you see the trial the other night of actor Robert Blake? It was on all the cable networks. Lasted for hours. Blake, seated in a white sedan that was traveling the highways and byways of Los Angeles,...
Wolfson Girls Beat White for Track Title
Byline: Laurie Cason, Times-Union correspondent What a difference one week and healthy sprinters can make. That's what Wolfson coach Ron Brooks credits for Wolfson's win over White in the girls team competition during yesterday's District 1-4A...
Woman Charged in Shooting of Car Soured Alimony Dispute Ignited Rage
Byline: Dana Treen, Times-Union staff writer A courtroom alimony dispute turned violent yesterday, ending in a bullet-ridden car but no serious injuries after a Jacksonville man said his ex-wife opened fire on him outside the Duval County Courthouse...