The Florida Times Union

Articles from July 23, 2003

12 Postal Police Jobs Eliminated; Inspection Service to Absorb Duties
Byline: Dana Treen, Times-Union staff writer In September, the U.S. Postal Service police force in Jacksonville will be dissolved in a reorganization that will also affect postal police units in six other cities as part of a nationwide reorganization....
2 Apartments Hit by Robbers; Invasions Not Likely Connected
Byline: Dan Scanlan, Times-Union staff writer Two Mandarin apartment dwellers lost stereo equipment, cash and other items in separate home-invasion robberies, one late Thursday at a complex in the 4200 block of Losco Road, the other Friday at one...
3 Face Charges in Beating
Byline: Dana Treen, Times-Union staff writer One man has been charged with attempted murder and a second man is being sought on the same charge after a Nassau County man was severely beaten for confronting them about selling marijuana in his neighborhood,...
4-H Members Put on Mock Session
Byline: R. Michael Anderson, Clay County Line staff writer Four Clay County teens, joined by one student from Jacksonville, returned home this week after participating in the 2003 session of the Florida 4-H Legislature held in Tallahassee July...
5 Attacks on Realtors Linked; Posing as Buyer, Man Robs Workers
Byline: Teresa Stepzinski, Times-Union staff writer BRUNSWICK -- A robber who posed as a prospective buyer, then tied up a Glynn County real estate agent last week, has been linked by police to four similar attacks in Georgia and Florida. Police...
A Close Read Can Reveal Small Wonders
Byline: Mark Woods, Times-Union columnist The ad is in the "Articles for Sale" section of the classifieds, after "aquarium," before "spa/hot tub," and right between "shipping container" and "sofa & loveseat." SINGLE MAUSOLEUM $3,000 or...
And It's All Done with Few ZZZ's
Byline: Anne Sponholtz, Times-Union correspondent Writing a weekly column can at times be a challenge. Once I hit the send key on the computer, which mysteriously allows my column to float through cyberspace to my editor's computer, the process...
Animal Control Policy Criticized; Audit: Euthanasia Rules Need Clarity
Byline: Matt Galnor, Times-Union staff writer Jacksonville's Animal Care and Control Division followed its procedures but should have had a clear, written policy on euthanasia in place when at least 40 of a Mandarin man's dogs were put to death...
Beach Changes, but Its Charm Remains
Byline: Bill Longenecker, Shorelines columnist Robert Moore has worked at the Publix in Atlantic Beach since 1988 after leaving the Navy. He is the inspiration for today's column. Robert told me he enjoys going to the library and searching the microfilm...
Beaches Short
CITY BEEFS UP SECURITY Neptune Beach has begun new security measures at City Hall following a memo from the city's Public Safety Director asking the city manager to tighten security. Public Safety Director Bill Brandt raised the issue after seeing...
Bible Study Groups a Community Project; Fernandina: 20 Churches Represented
Byline: Amelia A. Hart, Nassau Neighbors staff writer For Marie Stanley, the journey began with a friendly invitation from her new neighbor across the street to attend the women's Community Bible Study group in Fernandina Beach. It was an invitation...
Board Names Future Lake Asbury Junior High
Byline: Beth Reese Cravey, Clay County Line staff writer A junior high school planned for the Lake Asbury area has now officially been named Lake Asbury Junior High. The Clay County School Board tentatively decided on the name last month, but...
Brink's Manager Charged in Hijack; Armored Car Waylaid on I-95
Byline: Veronica Chapin, Times-Union staff writer A Brink's company branch manager who called in sick Monday was arrested that night after one of the firm's armored trucks loaded with more than $50 million was hijacked from Jacksonville, authorities...
Can Movie Put Sport Back on Track? Industry Bets on Picture to Win
Byline: Ben Volin, Times-Union sports writer Back in the late 1930s, Seabiscuit, a horse many deemed ill-suited for racing, became a national spectacle almost overnight with his record-shattering race times and rags-to-riches life story. Now...
Celebration of Playing; American Playground Founder Has His Day
Byline: Sandy Strickland, Times-Union staff writer It was a sight to warm the heart of Joseph Lee, father of the American playground. Under the towering pine trees at Drew Park on the Southside, more than 2,000 youngsters, clad mainly in yellow...
Chief to Retire; New Role Is Trainer; Brunswick Official Sought Job Change
Byline: Teresa Stepzinski, Times-Union staff writer BRUNSWICK -- Police Chief T.C. Cowan began his law enforcement career in Brunswick behind the wheel of a patrol car 34 years ago. Now, he's steering his career down another road. Cowan, 55,...
City Buildings Would Mean More Parking Downtown
Byline: Karen Brune Mathis, Times-Union senior business writer In a move that will provide more customer parking, the city wants to start construction in February on buildings that will house a plans and permits office and a court documents center....
City Council OKs Temporary Property Tax Hike; Workshops Set for Public's Input
Byline: Beth Reese Cravey, Clay County Line staff writer To provide flexibility during the upcoming budget review process, the Green Cove Springs City Council has approved a tentative property tax rate increase that would boost residents' tax bills...
Clay Appeals 2 Schools' FCAT Scores; Both Made Errors When Sending Tests
Byline: Beth Reese Cravey, County Line staff writer The Clay County school district has appealed the C grade that Orange Park High School received, based on students' 2003 assessment test scores, from the state Department of Education. Whether...
Clay's New Fire Station Jumps to Life; Green Cove Service Merges with County
Byline: R. Michael Anderson, Clay County Line staff writer The new crew at the main fire station in Green Cove Springs wasn't even on the job a half hour when the first call came in. Four members of Clay County Fire Rescue were officially assigned...
Club Keeps Swimmers in Pool; Athletes Improve Times during Year
Byline: Stephen Kindland, Clay County Line sports writer Coach Dan Medei has seen a number of boys and girls swim team members come and go during the course of a season in his three years at St. Johns Country Day School, and the on-again, off-again...
Coast Lines; Vaccination Registry Available
Families that move can now keep up with their children's vaccinations through a new registry now in use in 40 of the state's 159 counties. The Georgia Registry of Immunization Transactions and Services, or GRITS, will preserve a complete immunization...
Colorful Coach Leaving Rebuilt Orange Park Football Team
Byline: Stephen Kindland, Times-Union sports writer Despite an 8-22 record in his three seasons as coach of Orange Park High School's football team, Ron McCrone has several reasons to be proud as he heads for his new assistant coaching job at Southwest...
Community Notebook; Jaycees Host Soiree to Raise Funds for Snyder Building
Byline: John Carter, Staff writer A Saturday soiree is designed to spruce up a downtown church rebuilt after the city's great fire of 1901. The Snyder building at Laura and Monroe streets on Hemming Plaza served as a church and the base of an...
Condominiums Spark Debate on Building Heights
Byline: Caren Burmeister, Shorelines staff writer Developers and Jacksonville Beach planners face a debate over where to draw the line on building height rules meant to prevent towers like those along the oceanfront from going up elsewhere in the...
Conference Set for Expansion
At least nine high schools from Clay and St. Johns counties have agreed to expand the Florida Star Conference from its current four-school membership, and a 10th member will be added if Middleburg decides to join. Principals and athletic directors...
Construction, Class to Mix at First Bell; Fleming Island High Opens Aug. 7
Byline: Beth Reese Cravey, Clay County Line staff writer Despite the bricklayers outside, floor sanders inside and the host of other tradesmen still at work on various other parts of the Fleming Island High campus, the newly built school will be...
Corporate Earnings
FLORIDA ROCK INDUSTRIES INC. Jacksonville-based Florida Rock Industries yesterday announced record net income of $22.97 million, or 79 cents per diluted share, for the third quarter ended June 30. The results are a 18.7 percent increase over net...
County Charity Network Aims to Stop Enabling Clients
Byline: Mary Maraghy, Clay County Line staff writer Organizations that serve Clay County's needy plan to develop a countywide computerized database and referral system to better track clients seeking assistance so they can prevent abuse or double-dipping....
County Gets Good-Quality Dirt -- Cheap
Byline: R. Michael Anderson, Clay County Line staff writer Clay County officials received an offer they could not refuse. After all, they're getting something dirt cheap -- literally. A private contractor has offered to give the county 200,000...
County Schools Holding Meetings for Area Students
Byline: Beth Reese Cravey, County Line staff writer *******************CORRECTION July 26, 2003 Orientation at Orange Park Junior High will be Aug. 6, from 8 to 9:30 a.m. for grade seven and from 10 to 11:30 a.m. for grade eight. At Lakeside...
Dairy Farmers Turn Hay Field into Cemetery; Need Arose When Church Site Filled Up
Byline: Mary Maraghy, Clay County Line staff writer Dairy farmer Jerry Campbell said he always felt overtaken with serenity when working in his hay field in Green Cove Springs. "There was always a peacefulness that would come about," he said....
DEFENSE; Role-Playing
Democrats are expressing shock and surprise that the Roosevelt Roads Naval Station in Puerto Rico may close. But the news is not surprising. Among others, we noted that it would be a likely result if those demanding the closing of the Vieques training...
Developer Gets OK to Build New Homes; Marsh Landing Site of Development
Byline: Drew Dixon, Shorelines staff writer Some of the largest single-unit property lots ever offered in Ponte Vedra Beach are about to be on the market in Marsh Landing. An 85-acre development with just 20 single-home lots has been approved...
Duval Teacher Is State's Top Pick; Chets Creek Educator Honored
Byline: Cynthia L. Garza, Times-Union staff writer With a gasp and a few pats on the chest to settle her awe -- followed by a high-pitched "Wow!" -- Duval County public schools teacher Dayle Timmons accepted the honor as Florida's top educator last...
FAMU Prepares for Leap to I-A; but Move Up Might Prove Costly
Byline: Alex Abrams, Times-Union sports writer Troy State athletics director Johnny Williams received a visit in May from half of Florida A&M's athletics staff. Rattlers officials were looking into the possibility of upgrading their football...
Finincial Aid Service Disappoints Student; Little Help Comes despite $900 Fee
Byline: Beth Kormanik, Times-Union staff writer The pitch sounded good to Atlantic Beach resident Sherry Mitchell and her daughter, Melissa, when a company offered to fill out all of Melissa's financial aid forms and search for scholarships so she...
Food Program in Need; Meals on Wheels Looks for Drivers
Byline: John Carter, Times-Union staff writer How's his driving? In his opinion, wonderfully rewarding. He's a volunteer driver for the Meals on Wheels program that delivers hundreds of hot meals to disabled and elderly shut-ins five days...
Funds Raised for Surfing Accident Victim; Money Used to Make House Accessible
Byline: Caren Burmeister, Shorelines staff writer Friends and family are hosting a fund-raiser for a Jacksonville Beach man who was rescued by a 12-year-old girl after he broke his neck in a May 25 surfing accident. Charles Stephens, 45, is undergoing...
Gay Support Group Awards 6 Scholarships
Byline: Phillip J. Milano, River City News editor For Tanase Gheorghe Popa, a Southside resident attending the North Carolina School of the Arts, getting a scholarship from Parents, Families and Friends of Lesbians and Gays of Jacksonville isn't...
Ham Jam Planners Sue County
Byline: R. Michael Anderson, Clay County Line staff writer Nineteen months after Clay County commissioners gave the Ham Jam the heave-ho from Middleburg farmland, citing a zoning code conflict, the owners of the barbecue festival are suing the county...
HEALTH CARE; on the Wrong Side
Congressional Republicans are working diligently on behalf of the Democratic National Committee. Apparently unhappy at being in power, they are doing everything they can to earn defeat next year. So far, they have shown themselves to be capable...
Here's How You Know It's Too Hot
Byline: Mike Clark, Times-Union Reader Advocate How hot is it? Not that we're complaining, but we asked our e-mail group to give us some catchy examples. If you'd like to join our group, send us an e-mail. -- My doctor asks if I ever have...
Home Finally Makes Move; Structure Nears New Site after Delay
Byline: Dan Scanlan, Times-Union staff writer A house that seemed doomed to be a permanent floating fixture of Jacksonville's San Marco coastline has finally made it to the shores of its new home in Green Cove Springs. As thunderstorms threatened...
House OKs Duval Veterans Cemetery; Creation Authorized for 4 Other Cities, Too
Byline: Ben Volin, Times-Union staff writer Jacksonville veterans are a step closer to having their own national cemetery. The U.S. House unanimously passed a bill Monday authorizing the creation of a national cemetery in Jacksonville and four...
How Do Kids Get to New School? Safety and Cost Must Be Addressed
Byline: Beth Reese Cravey, Clay County Line staff writer Less than a month before Fleming Island High School's planned opening, an issue is arising over how some of its students will get to class. Some Clay County officials want the school district...
Institute Members Build Playground
Byline: Christina Blakeney, Times-Union staff writer Sounds of laughter, excitement and teamwork rang in the air recently when Prudential Youth Leadership Institute members built a playground for homeless children at the City Rescue Mission downtown....
Issue Is Also for Men
Byline: Tonyaa Weathersbee, Times-Union columnist The epidemic of people in Jacksonville being killed by those whom they once loved worries Al Emerick. It worries him so much that he isn't waiting for women's groups or organizations for battered...
Keeping the Faith
Byline: Glenda S. Jenkins, Nassau Neighbors correspondent OLD-TIME SERVICE The community is invited to an Old Time Fellowship service at Little Mount Olive Baptist Church in Nassauville. The service will begin at 6 p.m. Saturday. The Rev. Alonzo...
Kids Take on Each Other at County Event; Participants Have Fun at Camp
Byline: Maggie FitzRoy, Shorelines staff writer Nine-year-old Olivia Wilson braced her feet firmly against the ground, bent her knees, and gripped a bristled brown rope in both hands. Nine Ponte Vedra Beach teammates who were lined up behind her...
League Mulls Title Game Options
Byline: Bob Thomas, Times-Union sports writer GREENSBORO, Ga. -- Acknowledging that a 12-team Atlantic Coast Conference is "optimal" from a financial standpoint, commissioner John Swofford said the league will move forward at 11 teams with plans...
Living His 'Unreal' Dream; Nassau: He Operates a Fish Camp -- and More -- on St. Marys
Byline: Amelia A. Hart, Nassau Neighbors staff writer Ask Stephen Beck about the beauty of the St. Marys River and the phrase you'll hear most often is, "It's unreal." "I love the river," Beck, 44, said. "It's like therapy. It's like you leave...
Many Call for Changes at Accident-Prone Crossing
Byline: Dan Scanlan, Times-Union staff writer The lawn near the intersection of Orange Picker and Brady roads was littered with debris from the July 16 accident -- smashed headlights, a piece of grill, two plastic children's swords and a scattering...
MPS Group Earnings on the Rise; Tech, Staffing Demand Lagging
Byline: Mark Basch, Times-Union business writer MPS Group Inc. yesterday reported higher second-quarter earnings, but it is still waiting for demand to increase for its information technology consulting and professional staffing services businesses....
Neptune Wants More Aid for Ditch
Byline: Christopher F. Aguilar, Shorelines staff writer Neptune Beach will ask the Florida Department of Transportation for a more generous proposal than it offered to last month, to have the city take over a controversial drainage ditch. The...
New Sutton Place Director Hopes for Community Action; Fernandina: Not New to Small Towns
Byline: Kandace Lankford, Nassau Neighbors correspondent At first glance, Thomas E. Jordan's large size can seem intimidating, but he quickly dispels that with his soothing voice and jovial manner. The broad-shouldered, bespectacled Jordan has...
Off-Field Games Are Risky Business; Injuries Can Cost NFL Players Millions
Byline: Teneshia L. Wright, Times-Union sports writer With a monthlong respite between NFL minicamp and training camp, Renaldo Wynn considered buying his first motorcycle. But the Washington Redskins defensive end and former Jaguars first-round...
OP Removes Interim Tag, Names Leasor Coach
Byline: Chase Goodbread, Times-Union sports writer Orange Park High School has named interim football coach Ted Leasor as its head coach for the coming season, just more than a week after the resignation of Ron McCrone. Leasor has 29 years of...
Owner Pleads Pets Case; Dogs Attacked 2 within Months
Byline: Dan Scanlan, Times-Union staff writer The owner of two dogs that attacked a 10-year-old girl and a 30-year-old woman on Cattail Circle in Julington Creek Plantation earlier this year has appealed a St. Johns County decision to put her animals...
Players Actor Gets Rave Reviews from Peers
Byline: Mark Faulkner, Shorelines correspondent If you saw a Beaches community theater show last season, odds are Trey Ryan was part of the cast. Appearing in five main-stage shows, Ryan performed leading roles in three and took home the Pelican...
POLICE BRIEFS; Man Arrested for Concealed Gun
Following is a list of arrests and crimes reported by Beaches-area police departments: ATLANTIC BEACH Police arrested a man July 13 and charged him with carrying a concealed weapon after he got into an argument with another man at the Waffle...
POLICE BRIEFS; Truck Crash Kills Middleburg Man Witness Reports High Speeds before Accident
Byline: R. Michael Anderson, Clay County Line staff writer A Middleburg man was killed Sunday afternoon when his pickup truck crashed into a drainage ditch in the 2500 block of County Road 209. A passenger in the vehicle was transported by helicopter...
Ponte Vedra Not Using Free Sign Program; State Pays to Mark Beach Access
Byline: Drew Dixon, Shorelines staff writer Even after being encouraged by the state to post free signs in beach access areas, St. Johns County continues to not mark all but one of the access points in Ponte Vedra Beach. A state government operation...
Principals Shift Positions at Clay Schools
Byline: Beth Reese Cravey, Times-Union staff The makeup of the Clay County public school principal roster has undergone seismic shifts in the past year. Nine Clay schools have gotten new principals since the start of the last school year in August.The...
Reaching out to Help; Youth Institute Members Build Playground
Byline: Christina Blakeney, Staff writer Sounds of laughter, excitement and teamwork rang in the air recently when Prudential Youth Leadership Institute members built a playground for homeless children at the City Rescue Mission downtown. "You...
Rebuilding a Life; Severely Injured Woman Still Has Dreams
Byline: Mary Maraghy, Clay County Line staff writer Jewels Rogers and her dog, Gems, moved from their home state of California to Florida five years ago, ready to make it on their own. She was 19 years old. She found an apartment in the Arlington...
Road Safety Suggestions Made; Options Include Medians, Fewer Driveways
Byline: Christopher F. Aguilar, Shorelines staff writer A consultant has suggested reducing the number of driveways into businesses along Mayport Road to improve traffic safety on the busy, commercialized road. Consultant Dan Kristoff, of the...
Rotarian Governor on Move; Orange Park Man Takes on Challenge
Byline: Mary Maraghy, Clay County Line staff writer Ken Smallwood fears his new Rotarian role may cause him to plump up. On July 1, the Clay County real estate broker became the district governor for Rotary District 6970, which encompasses 12...
Sam Young; Deputy Fire Chief Burns in the Kitchen
Byline: Kandace Lankford, Nassau Neighbors correspondent When the heat is on, Sam Young is cooking. Young, the new deputy chief of fire and rescue for Nassau County, enjoys the challenge of leading a team toward better ways to provide customer...
Sanctuary Treats Tiger's Dental Ills
Byline: Christina Blakeney, Times-Union staff writer This was not your mom's root canal. Or your dad's, for that matter. Try one for a 160-pound female Siberian tiger named Sasha. Los Angeles veterinary specialists Scott Amsel and Fred...
Schools Hold Breath on Funding; $258 Million Budget Tentatively OK'd
Byline: Beth Reese Cravey, County Line staff writer The Clay County School Board and its budget writers have their collective fingers crossed. The board Thursday tentatively approved a 2003-04 budget of $258.1 million that, because of increasing...
Sheriff's Office Getting More Bang for Its Buck; New Guns Save Money, Meet Officers' Approval
Byline: R. Michael Anderson, Clay County Line staff writer The Clay County Sheriff's Office, like many other law enforcement agencies around the country, is trading in its 10mm handguns for a sidearm that U.S. military officers have been toting...
Shooting on Southside; Boy Accidentally Wounds Playmate
Byline: Tia Mitchell, Times-Union staff writer *********************CORRECTION July 14, 2003 A child shot Tuesday at a Philips Highway mobile home park is 10 years old. Because of incorrect information provided by Jacksonville police, the boy's...
SPENDING 101: A MATTER OF BALANCE; Teens' Needs vs. Wants Parents Should Start Talking to Children about Personal Finance at an Early Age
Byline: Laura Diamond, Times-Union staff writer As Allison Fields prepares for her freshman year at the University of Florida, her family makes sure she has everything she needs. They've registered her for classes. They've bought her new clothes,...
State's Proposals for A1A Draw Concern; Nassau: Residents Skeptical of Plans
Byline: Amelia A. Hart, Nassau Neighbors staff writer A meeting last week on the Florida Department of Transportation's plans to widen Florida A1A from four lanes to six drew a fair amount of public participation before the meeting but little comment...
St. Joe Earnings Expected to Remain Strong for Year
Byline: Mark Basch, Times-Union business writer The St. Joe Co. yesterday said earnings from its real estate development activities, excluding one-time items, rose in the second quarter. And with activity expected to remain strong for the rest of...
Student from Episcopal Wins Acceptance to Naval Academy
THREE CHEERS -- Richard Anthony Kopp Jr. has been accepted into the U.S. Naval Academy in Annapolis, Md., as part of the class of 2007. He received his nomination from U.S. Rep. Ander Crenshaw, R-Jacksonville. Kopp, a 2003 cum laude graduate...
Students to Make a Pledge; 'I Can Achieve' Plans a Rally
Byline: John Carter, Staff writer They believe in belief. "When young people have faith that they can accomplish something, they have a very good chance of making that a reality," said Carlton McGee, a director at the Laurence F. Lee Boys &...
Summer Fest Sizzles This Weekend; Jacksonville Journal
Live music, food and many sun-and-surf activities will be featured at the annual Summer Sizzler Beach Festival Friday and Saturday in St. Augustine Beach. The festival begins at 6 p.m. Friday at the St. Augustine Beach pavilion with the Summer Sizzler...
Taking a Healthy Approach; Groups Try to Help City's Residents
Byline: Sandy Strickland, Times-Union staff writer There's a massive initiative under way to improve the health of Jacksonville's 1 million-plus residents. Sixteen coalitions have been formed to address issues ranging from asthma to diabetes...
UCF Student Honored as Leader
ACHIEVEMENTS -- Jessica Ariella Jenness has been selected by the University of Central Florida as one of the country's outstanding campus leaders by Who's Who Among Students in American Universities and Colleges. She is the daughter of Bill and...
Writer Extols Yoga; Her Advice: Sit Down and Write
Byline: Linda McDonald, River City News correspondent Black embroidery garnished the pale yellow shawl that embraced an array of Mexican delicacies at a recent Florida Writer's Association Ladies' Tea. The hostess, Westside resident Ruth Barnaby,...
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