The Florida Times Union

Articles from May 17, 1997

10 Years Later, Impact Lingers A Wreath Cast in Sea, a Bell Tolls in Tribute
Bernard Seeley was standing watch at the helm of the USS Stark as it cut through the Persian Gulf 10 years ago today when he noticed a fog bank turn an eerie, pale blue. A ball of light emerged from the mist and headed straight for the...
15 Bands for Dancin' in Streets
JACKSONVILLE BEACH -- The bands strumming the music for Dancin' in the Streets are local performers who will offer today's crowd a variety of tastes. "There's a little bit of something for everyone," said David Jax, assistant music director...
2 Area Athletes Qualify for X (for Extreme) Games
Area athletes Katie Brown and Viorel Popa have qualified to compete in the X Games, ESPN's Olympics for extreme sports. Both are in-line skaters, and both made it through regional trials in Orlando last week to advance to the games in San...
35 Clay Pioneers Find Big, Happy Family
Edna Griffith never expected 35 people would show up at the organizational meeting for descendants of Clay County pioneers. "I had only made 15 information packets," said Griffith, who organized the meeting Saturday in the Orange Park branch...
5 Confused Souls in a Bar in Houston
ATLANTIC BEACH -- Five people caught at the crossroads of their lives are the subject of the Atlantic Beach Experimental Theatre's production of Nice People Dancing to Good Country Music. Set around a bar in Houston, this sharp comedy allows...
9 Ejected as Youth Teams Fight
Fists flew. Dugouts emptied. The fans stormed the field. No, it wasn't a major league brouhaha. The melee erupted Thursday night among two youth baseball teams, their parents and other bystanders at a Westside Jacksonville ballpark, police...
A1A Plan Dies; 9B Connector Pursued
One St. Johns County commissioner is hoping Butler Beach and Treasure Beach's loss could be a gain for Fruit Cove and Switzerland. The Florida Department of Transportation has dropped plans to use $2.6 million on a Florida A1A widening...
Another Bridge Injury Accident the Fourth on New Sidney Lanier
BRUNSWICK -- Glynn County firefighters assisted by an industrial crane rescued an injured construction worker yesterday from inside narrow form-work encircling a five-story tall concrete bridge support for the new Sidney Lanier Bridge. ...
Big Blue Making a Comeback
Ten years after the stock market crash, IBM is back. International Business Machines Corp. hit a record high of 177 1/8 this week. That may not seem like much of an accomplishment, given that everybody is hitting record highs in this bull...
Black Creek Speedway Residents Ask for Slowdown on Waterway
On many Sunday afternoons, Jerry Williams has a choice of where to watch people driving very, very fast. He can watch NASCAR races on television. Or he can sit on the dock behind his Middleburg home near the Main Street boat ramp and watch...
Bolles' Glass Slipper Finally Breaks
The Bolles baseball team had been calling itself a Cinderella team all season. The Bulldogs weren't ranked in the state poll and they surprised many people by advancing to the Class 4A North II regional final. And just when they thought...
Clay to Tighten Up on Home Repair Aid
County commissioners have agreed to seek tighter eligibility criteria for people who apply to the State Housing Initiatives Partnership program for free financial aid to repair their homes. What they want to do, commissioners said this...
Commission Approves Proceeding with Deal for New Cable Service
GREEN COVE SPRINGS -- The Clay County Commission has given a preliminary thumbs-up to a new telecommunications company seeking a franchise to provide cable television service in the county. The commission, after a two-hour public hearing...
Company Line Has Just Taken One Giant Leap
There is a new Jaguar coming, and Jaguar Cars Chairman Nick Scheele said it will be major competition for the current crop of mid-size performance and luxury sedans from Cadillac, BMW, Audi and Mercedes-Benz. Code-named the X200, about...
Convention Hotel Plans Still Alive
The deal to build a $52 million convention center hotel in downtown Jacksonville hit a wall last week in a flap over funding. But a member of both the City Council and the Duval County Tourist Development Council is crafting a compromise...
County Manager Gets 'Deserving' 3% Raise
GREEN COVE SPRING -- The consensus among Clay County commissioners was that County Manager Bob Wilson deserved some sort of merit salary increase. But the commissioners were nowhere near agreement about the amount of the pay raise when...
Diaz Saves 'Noles in ACC Tournament
ST. PETERSBURG -- It was bound to happen. After 25 1/3 consecutive innings of work by Florida State starting pitchers, coach Mike Martin went to his bullpen to finish the job started by Randy Niles in last night's Atlantic Coast Conference...
Environmental Measure Fought by City Officials
A state senator's bid to help an Alachua County cement factory is drawing fire from Jacksonville officials who say it might permanently freeze local environmental regulations on businesses in dozens of North Florida counties. Critics say...
Firefighters' `Test-Score' Hiring Raked
Jacksonville Fire Chief Ray Alfred wants to eliminate the positioning of firefighting candidates by test score, a process that he says has barred from contention qualified applicants -- including blacks and women. All applicants are state-certified...
Going Native Indigenous Plants Not Only Cut Down on Maintenance, They Attract Wildlife and Are Aquifer-Friendly
When gardeners rattle off plant names like needle palm, hop hornbeam, hearts-a-bustin' and big pipestem, it's a sure sign they've gone native. Switching to natives, plants that have been indigenous to the area since before European settlement,...
Haiti Trip More Than a Mission for Teen
To Jeff Stalnaker, Nadia was just a tiny figure in a black and white photograph. Until last month. The little girl in the picture became real to him during a missions trip to Haiti. There, the 17-year-old Rolling Hills resident got a...
Handicapped Parking Rules Are Enforced
Dear Call Box: I'd like to know if you can park overnight in a handicapped space. It's happening in my apartment complex, and I'd like to report it. -- No name. Dear Reader: Call the Enforcement Department at Jacksonville's Public Parking...
Idea Revived: City of Ponte Vedra Beach
PONTE VEDRA BEACH -- The possibility of incorporating Ponte Vedra Beach is once again in the spotlight following a forum on the issue hosted Wednesday by the Ponte Vedra Beach Chamber of Commerce. The chamber invited about 20 community...
International Consensus Agencies Come Together on Economic Development
When it comes to forging a unified front, Jacksonville's various international economic development officials and agencies often have acted more like Balkan rivals than allies. But now peace appears to be at hand. Two international development...
Jacksonville Journal
QUOTE, UNQUOTE "This is the worst incident I've seen or have been involved in." -- Allen Chavis, who has been umpiring youth baseball for 10 years in Jacksonville, said he was stunned by the brawl involving teams of boys ages 15 to 17....
Joe Looks to Take Next Step
Billy Joe was shuffled around town yesterday during his booster tour, shaking hands and telling stories, and describing the next big step for the Florida A&M football program to anyone who would listen. A hot coach, a hot program --...
Judge Grants Residents Pool Tax Reprieve
A Jacksonville judge has granted a reprieve to the residents of the Southern Villas of Mandarin neighborhood, holding off on a May 10 sale that could have seen their 12-year-old community pool sold by the city to pay years of back taxes. ...
Landrum Principal Promoted for Chance to Aid Thousands
PALM VALLEY -- The success Principal Bob Allten has achieved at Landrum Middle School, including being named a national Blue Ribbon School, is something St. Johns County Superintendent Hugh Balboni wants to generate on a larger scale. In...
Man Dies in Mobile Home Fire Officials Say Pre-Dawn Blaze Caused by Cooking Accident
A Westside Jacksonville man died yesterday in a pre-dawn fire that destroyed his mobile home. William Waters, 26, was found in his home in the 12500 block of Patty Drive following the 5:20 a.m. fire, said Ted Holmes, a fire department spokesman....
Melisa Moses Begins Gearing Up for the Olympics in 2000
Melisa Moses is on the move again. Moses, the Orange Park resident who finished fourth in 3-meter Olympic diving competition last year in Atlanta, is moving this month to Fort Lauderdale to begin training for the 2000 Olympics. She will...
Neighbor to Neighbor
Question: How much did traffic increase on the Fuller Warren Bridge when bridge tolls were removed in August 1989? Answer: Good question, in view of the decision this week to bar through traffic by trucks and buses weighing over 26,000 pounds...
New Cable's Expansion into Mandarin Hitting Snags
MediaOne's new Broadband cable television network has run into some problems as it expands its web of fiber optics cable around Mandarin. On April 8, cable installers damaged a water main in one Mandarin neighborhood. Two weeks later, vandals...
New Shipyard Chief Brunswick Facility, Navy Contract Candidate, Taps Ex-Mayport Officer
BRUNSWICK -- U.S. Shipyard Inc., one of four shipyard operators in the running for a potentially lucrative Navy contract, has tapped Oliver K. Spears III, former commander of the Navy's Regional Support Group at Mayport Naval Station in Jacksonville,...
Northside Teams Score in Softball
Jacksonville's Northside has made its reputation as the city's best area for high school basketball. It appears that reputation is getting threatened by another round ball, albeit smaller. Led by First Coast, one of the state's perennial powers,...
Parents Told about Pending School Laws
To Brenda Larkins, a $2 fine against students who habitually skip class might actually force some of them to stop. The expense, she said, could cut into their junk food allowance. "But that doesn't mean they will stay in school once they...
Perks Cut in Revised Alltel Deal Some Still Question Pact's Bottom Line
The Jaguars and Alltel Corp. yesterday produced a new stadium naming rights deal that omits perks and other items that an earlier proposal required the city to finance. The new deal drew generally favorable reaction from City Hall, although...
Police Briefing
Following are crimes and other incidents reported recently in Arlington to the Jacksonville Sheriff's Office. THROWING DEADLY MISSILES: Someone broke the window of a home in the 12000 block of McCormick Road about 10:30 p.m. May 10. According...
Public Safety
CLAY COUNTY A man disgruntled over not being offered a job threatened to kidnap a child Monday, according to a Sheriff's Office report. The report indicated that a 28-year-old woman residing in the 1800 block of Yukon Court contacted sheriff's...
Real League Takes Action
Running off at the typewriter . . . In honor of the councilmen who feel the Jaguars hoodwinked the city on the stadium naming rights deal, perhaps we should start referring to it as "No Tell" Stadium instead of Alltel Stadium. . . . Have...
San Mateo Teams Must Move to New Field
San Mateo Little League teams have competed for 29 years on the same home field in North Jacksonville. In December, however, the teams will have to move. Zion Jacksonville Partnership Limited, a New York-based company that owns the baseball...
Season for Haze -- and Pollution Warm Weather Brings Hazards
Now that temperatures are rising and days are getting longer, Northeast Floridians and Southeast Georgians can look forward to a fixture of summer -- hazy skies. While the haze generally is great for spectacular sunsets, it also is a sign...
Some Crops Hit Harder Than Others
Midway through harvest season, North Florida potato growers and agricultural experts are finding that damage from devastating rains three weeks ago may not be as bad as expected overall. But federal crop assessments still show a need to make...
Spirit of Restoration Reigns in Springfield Home Tour
When Arnold "Art" Bennett took a close look at the crumbling two-story structure for sale on North Market Street in Springfield, he wanted to run. But the colonial-revival house loosened pleasant memories of childhood days in old houses....
Still Doing Business at 80 'Pops' Operates a Tiny Fruit Stand in Jacksonville
James Hodge has no teeth, so the 80-year-old fruit salesman can eat only an occasional banana or grape from the downtown Jacksonville stand he's operated the past 18 years. But there's another reason Hodge, known as "Pops" to his regular...
St. Johns Developer Agrees to Help Ease I-95 Traffic
Future developments along Interstate 95 in St. Johns County may have to pay for road improvements to deal with growing traffic pressure, following the lead of developers of a massive outlet mall and other projects. Yesterday, the developer...
St. Luke's Nurse to the Rescue Honored
As a nurse and director of patient care for St. Luke's Hospital, Mary Lesperance is no stranger to matters of life and death. But last October, the Southside woman wasn't wearing a nursing uniform when she saved a man from nearly drowning....
Students but Not Amateurs Young Artists' Work Chosen for Museum
Many teenage artists dream of seeing their works hanging in a museum someday. Quite a few just had their wish fulfilled. Student artists from public schools in the Jacksonville area competed to have their work selected for "The Senior High...
Suspect Still Not Charged Serial Killing Leads Slow in Coming
ST. AUGUSTINE -- Six weeks after law enforcement authorities linked a North Carolina slaying suspect to the homicides of seven women in St. Johns County, investigators say they are making progress but have not filed charges. In early April,...
They Work Overtime for a Diploma
Ila Wood was labeled a special education student in the first grade. She had to repeat the second grade. She remembers always struggling in school. But when Wood walks across the stage to pick up her diploma from Mandarin High School next...
Three R's Not Enough for Schools, CEO Says
Getting back to the three R's of public education just won't cut it. The workplace needs public schools that teach children to think for themselves, work in a team and use technology. That was the central message delivered by a prominent...
Two Losses Eliminate Ospreys
PLANT CITY -- Getting a bid to the NCAA Division II South Regional hasn't been a problem for the North Florida baseball team. Winning once it gets there has. Since moving to Division II in 1994, UNF has made three South Regional appearances...
UF's Buth Well-Rested for Semis
GAINESVILLE -- She sat outside the courts for a month, a spectator away from the game that had consumed much of her 20 years in this world. Getting healthy had never been so enlightening. For the last four weeks of the regular season, the...
Victory for Jaguar Stylish XK8 Has the Snarl of an E-Type
The first words out of the security guard when the green Jaguar XK8 rolled up to the Times-Union were to be heard a lot more over the next week of driving. "Oh my gosh, that's beautiful," the guard said. Within the next few minutes, another...
What's in Future for Blue Cypress?
The first of several public hearings to decide what to do with Arlington's Blue Cypress Park has been scheduled for May 29. City Councilman John Crescimbeni, whose district includes Blue Cypress Park, said the consulting firm of Fleet &...
Wolfson Teams Win Track Titles
GAINESVILLE -- As expected, Wolfson senior Geno White blew away the competition in the Class 5A track and field championships in a 100-meter time of 10.66. What wasn't expected yesterday was that White's Artrice Ball also became a state 100-meter...
WWII Bombardier, Educator Honored as Volunteer 80 He Still Grieves for His Buddies on the B-17
With two engines on fire and their B-17 riddled by flak from German artillery, bombardier Lt. Bill Frye Jr. made his way toward an exit hatch and pulled the lever. At that moment the plane, nicknamed Wild Oats, exploded and catapulted the...
'Zero Tolerance' Calls Prohibition to Mind
Jacksonville Beach's "zero tolerance" policy on public drinking is causing waves. People are unhappy about being busted for breaking a law they didn't know existed and the cops are saying serves you right. Law-and-order folks say clean...