The Florida Times Union

Articles from October 31, 2007

2 Officers Receive Medals of Valor, Rarely Awarded
Byline: DAN SCANLAN Two officers. Two burning trucks. Two Medal of Valor awards. Jacksonville Sheriff John Rutherford handed out the medals at a ceremony Thursday, honoring the two men who braved flames to save the life of someone trapped...
A 25-Year Vision for the Future of Nassau County
Byline: Donna Lynne VanPuymbrouck Creating a vision plan for the next 25 years in Nassau County is vital to the future of our community. We at the Amelia Island-Fernandina Beach-Yulee Chamber of Commerce, in partnership with the government of Nassau...
Acclaimed Musicians in New Trio Play at Fine Arts Series
Byline: TAMARA McCLARAN Trio Virtuosi is made up of three established and internationally known soloists. But as a trio, it's newly formed and in the midst of its first touring season. As part of that tour, the group will be performing on Sunday...
A.M.Stir
Byline: DAVID CRUMPLER RANT AT A LOSS FOR WORDS There are two types of people in the world: those who find crossword puzzles easy to work, and those who don't. I start out the week thinking I'm a member of the first group, but as the week...
'A Party to Murder' Is Fast-Paced, Entertaining, Deadly
Byline: TAMARA McCLARAN Just in time for Halloween, the Atlantic Beach Experimental Theatre has brought together a cast of veteran performers and newcomers for an entertaining murder mystery in the classic style of Agatha Christie. A Party to Murder...
Beach Shorts
VOLUNTEER AT SHELTER A daytime center that provides meals, showers and medical assistance for homeless people needs volunteers to prepare and serve turkeys, mashed potatoes and all the traditional fare for the Thursday, Nov. 22, Mission House Thanksgiving...
Beauty Isn't Disney; It's Moments
Byline: Mark Woods I believe there are two kinds of people in the world. Those who think Disney World is indeed the happiest place on earth. And those, like me, who think it's a 25,000-acre torture chamber. I have this hunch that, contrary...
College Smackdown; Bulldogs Celebration Bad Enough, but Defense Lost It
Byline: Eric Corbett Classless. Flagrant. Over-the-top. Cheap. Dramatic. Brilliant. Effective. Gutsy. Passionate. Desperate. Emotional. Cathartic. Ingenious. Gamesmanship. Memorable. Hypocritical. Genius. Unprecedented. Brazen. Orchestrated. Disrespectful....
College Smackdown; That Celebration Strategy Was the Best Call of the Year
Byline: Trey Dennard Let me go ahead and take an unsportsmanlike penalty for excessive celebrating right here in the first sentence! I think Coach Mark Richt's challenge to his team to rush the end zone and take a celebration penalty on the first...
College Smackdown; This Week Is FSU's Big Opportunity and Florida Fans, Do the Numbers 42 and 30 Mean Anything?
Byline: W.D. Rodeffer To be honest, I was very concerned about the Duke game, and it was not even basketball season. Duke is starting to act like the Vandy of the ACC, and I am not quite sure who we are acting like. I was just hoping we would not...
Community Hospice Will Offer 'Hope for the Holidays'
Byline: SANDY STRICKLAND Community Hospice of Northeast Florida is offering "Hope for the Holidays." The free event, created for families, friends and caregivers who've experienced the death of a loved one, is from 6:30 to 8 p.m. Tuesday, Nov....
County Will Use Food-Grade Auto Fuel; A Biodiesel Program Will Soon Be Ready with Fuel for 250 of the County's Vehicles
Byline: CHRISTINA ABEL Fried chicken, french fries, onion rings - not the scents one would expect when following one of St. Johns County's vehicles. But with a new biodiesel program in the works, that's what's in the air. Joe Stephenson, the...
Crist's Property Tax Push Begins in Jacksonville; with the Proposal Passed and Signed, It's Up to Voters on Jan. 29
Byline: JIM SCHOETTLER Already having counteracted property tax cuts by eliminating some city programs and approving various fees, Jacksonville officials have decried losing up to $75 million next year if more property tax relief is approved. ...
DAVID HALBERSTAM; Lessons from Korea
David Halberstam, a prolific author, was a great reporter. He may not have been a classic wordsmith, but his books were packed with the knowledge that he accumulated from tireless enthusiasm and hard work. Halberstam died last April at age 73...
ELECTION; 4 Seeking Seats on Woodbine Council
Byline: GORDON JACKSON WOODBINE - Four candidates for two at-large Woodbine City Council seats will square off in Tuesday's election. The two candidates with the most votes will serve the next four years as council representatives. Here is a...
Episcopal Volleyball Cruises to Semifinal
Byline: MARK BOLEKY The girls on the Episcopal volleyball team sure played like they had been here before, even though almost none of them had. The Eagles cruised to a 25-18, 25-8, 25-10 win over visiting Madison County in the Class 3A regional...
Flat Market Throws Stone at Second Tower; All-Glass St. John Joins Shipyards Condos on Hold
Byline: LIZ FLAISIG Development of a second luxury condominium tower downtown has been put on hold until the real estate market recovers. Private developer Hines announced late Tuesday The St. John would not be built next to the Aetna Building...
Florida Rock Deal Could Close This Year; Vulcan Reports Progress on Antitrust Issues during Earnings Call
Byline: MARK BASCH Vulcan Materials Co. CEO Don James said Tuesday that his company is making progress in resolving antitrust issues for its pending acquisition of Jacksonville-based Florida Rock Industries Inc., and he expects to complete the deal...
Georgia Briefs
AIDS INFECTION OF SEX PARTNER LEADS TO ARREST ATHENS - Police charged an AIDS-infected Athens man with felony reckless conduct for not telling a woman he had the deadly virus three years ago when the two had sex, Athens-Clarke police said. The...
Grandmother Knows, College Is Not Something to Be Skipped
Byline: Tonyaa Weathersbee When Anthony Carpenter was a child his grandmother, Pat Carpenter, probably let him get away with a few things. If she didn't, she wouldn't be Grandmother. But now that he's 17, there's one thing Grandmother is determined...
Gray Needs Only to Win, Not Be a Star
Byline: Sam Borden Here is what the coach of the Jaguars said this week in response to a relatively basic question in which he was asked to identify what his starting quarterback does well on the field: "I think we've talked enough about our quarterbacks...
Harry Potter Finds a Place in Halloween Fun; the Beaches Museum Hosts a Harry and the Hogwarts Party
Byline: MAGGIE FITZROY Dressed in a long black cape and big round black glasses and bearing a lightning-shaped "scar" on his forehead, 5-year-old David Heykens of Jacksonville Beach looked like Harry Potter Thursday afternoon. He also experienced...
Hicken Event to Award Prize Money to Competitors in Race
Byline: HEATHER CAMP They're not just raising awareness of breast cancer, they're bringing in world-class runners to do it. The 26.2 With Donna: The National Marathon to Fight Breast Cancer has announced it has raised $65,000 in prize money for...
HIGH SCHOOL GOLF ROUNDUP; Nease Boys Build Big Lead
Byline: GARRY SMITS The Nease boys golf team, chasing what would be a historic state title, battled adverse conditions to jump out to a big lead in the first round of the Class 2A tournament Tuesday at the Golf Club at Bridgewater in North Lakeland....
HIGH SCHOOL NOTEBOOK; Forrest Hunting for Elusive Title
Byline: JEFF ELLIOTT For First Coast High School, Friday's battle with Forrest for the district championship is old hat. For the Rebels, it's uncharted territory. At stake for both teams is the District 4-4A title and the right to play host...
INFANT MORTALITY; Saving Infants
The significant drop in Duval County's infant mortality rate may just be a one-year blip. A major decline in sleeping related deaths in 2006 played a large part in decline of the overall infant mortality rate that year. The decline has not continued...
It's Not Your Imagination; Violent Crime Is More of a Factor
It doesn't take a billboard or a stack of statistics to know that crime is a bigger deal in Mandarin than it used to be. Word gets around fast when there's a robbery, a shooting or a murder. And there is increasingly more to talk about. Consider...
James Could Start in Backfield for Gators; the Former St. Augustine High Star Is More Than Eager to Take on the Job
Byline: MICHAEL DIROCCO GAINESVILLE - Florida's smallest player might have a bigger job Saturday afternoon against Vanderbilt. Brandon James already has established himself as one of the nation's top punt and kick returners, but the 5-foot-6,...
Judge Denies Extra Time for Edenfield Murder Case; Attorneys Say They Don't Have the Resources, All Evidence to Prepare
Byline: TERESA STEPZINSKI BRUNSWICK - David Edenfield's attorneys contend they don't have the resources nor access to all evidence necessary to properly prepare his defense in the sexual abuse slaying of 6-year-old Christopher Michael Barrios Jr....
Just Call This Deer a Real Extrovert
Byline: WENDI ZONGKER BOULOGNE - Carly was a little wary of Backstrap when they met six months ago at the St. Marys River Fish Camp. Carly, a mixed-breed dog, and Backstrap, a deer, first met while Anne Shaver, Carly's owner and a fish camp resident,...
MaliVai's New Day for Durkeeville; City Officials Help Him Dedicate New Courts at a Neighborhood Center
Byline: JESSIE-LYNNE KERR The skies had threatened earlier to dump some rain and the gusty breezes would have made tennis difficult. So there was no tennis - but still lots of love in the air - as the ceremonial red ribbon was cut Tuesday to dedicate...
Man Poses as Helper to Rob Woman, 19; First, He Assisted Her with Her Stalled Car; Then He Pulled a Gun
A man who at first seemed to be a Good Samaritan ended up stealing a 19-year-old motorist's purse at gunpoint Monday morning, police said. She was exiting from Interstate 295 onto 103rd Street about 7:20 a.m. when her car, a 1995 Nissan Maxima,...
Meester Takes Pride in Rides
Byline: MICHAEL C. WRIGHT When Jaguars center Brad Meester isn't busy with his three daughters, Lilly, Emma and Chloe, he's into hunting, fishing and restoring classic muscle cars. Meester recently discussed some of his hobbies, growing up on a...
Morning Briefs
THREE ADVERTISING FIRMS BID ON JEA CONTRACT Three local firms are among the five bidders on JEA's second attempt to find an agency for a five-year, $7 million advertising contract. The Dalton Agency and On Ideas, both Jacksonville companies,...
My Mandarin Community; Bartram Blackhawks Baseball Team Is Having Tryouts Sunday
Byline: DAN SCANLAN Tryouts for the 14U Bartram Blackhawks baseball team are at 2 p.m. Sunday at Bartram Trail High School, 7399 Longleaf Pine Parkway in Northwest St. Johns County, just off Greenbriar Road. The team is open to Mandarin and St....
My Southside Community; Annual Jewish Book Festival Begins Monday
Byline: DAN SCANLAN The Jewish Community Alliance's 11th annual Jewish Book Festival comes to town from Monday to Saturday, Nov. 17, with five author events covering topics ranging from "chick lit" to jazz to Jewish life at the alliance at 8505...
Nassau's Speckled Trout Tournament Drawing Near
Byline: Capt. Jim Johnson Cool fall temperatures mark the beginning of some of the hottest fishing Nassau County has to offer the light tackle enthusiast. This time of year, the waters of Nassau offer fun lure or live bait fishing around our...
New Bus Service Is Attracting New Workers; the Route Takes Passengers from Downtown Jacksonville to Beaches and Ponte Vedra
Byline: CHRISTINA ABEL A new Jacksonville Transportation Authority bus route that takes riders from downtown Jacksonville to Ponte Vedra Beach and the Beaches has averaged about 30 riders a day for the past two months and officials expect its popularity...
New Residence Hall Is Coming in 2009 for Growing UNF Campus
As the University of North Florida grows, so does the demand for more student housing on campus. As part of UNF's 35th anniversary celebration, ground was broken last week on a new $86 million residence hall, Osprey Fountains, on the eastern ridge...
Nine-Hole Golf Course Is Being Constructed near Old Landfill Site
Byline: DAN SCANLAN Mandarin's mountain will soon have a nine-hole golf course to complement the condominium project that was begun more than four years ago. Construction has already begun on the Roy Case-designed Sunbeam Hill Golf Course, which...
No Criminal Charges for Barnes; but He Will Face a Probation Hearing
Byline: PAUL PINKHAM Prosecutors won't pursue criminal charges in Jaguars tackle Khalif Barnes' most recent traffic mishap but will look into whether Barnes violated probation on a prior drunken driving conviction. Duval County Judge James Ruth...
Physical Therapist Pleads to Fraud Scam; His Seven-Month Scheme Stole More Than $700,000
Byline: TERESA STEPZINSKI A physical therapist has admitted scheming with his wife, a Wayne County doctor and the doctor's wife to steal more than $700,000 in government health-care reimbursements over a seven-month period. Scott T. Bowlin, 43,...
Police Briefs; Couple Loading Car at 9:15 A.M. Are Help Up by Men with Gun
Byline: DAN SCANLAN Two men robbed a couple early Oct. 26 as they were packing a car outside an apartment complex at 8343 Hogan Road. But the gunman and his accomplice didn't get much before they ran off. Police said a 25-year-old woman and...
Police Briefs; Crash Victim Robbed While Waiting for Police
Byline: SANDY STRICKLAND First, a 34-year-old man was the victim of a hit-and-run crash. Then, while waiting for police in the 1900 block of University Boulevard, he and his girlfriend were robbed at gunpoint. The victims were sitting in a 2007...
Police Briefs; Hall of Terror Man Charged with Sex Crime
The following is a compilation of reports from Beaches-area police departments: JACKSONVILLE BEACH - A 37-year-old volunteer at Adventure Landing's Halloween Hall of Terror was arrested Friday on a charge of lewd and lascivious molestation involving...
Police Briefs; Pair in Black Hoods Break into a Home, Try to Enter Another
Byline: DAN SCANLAN Two men in hooded, black clothing broke into a home early Oct. 24 in the 9100 block of Shalamar Court and burglarized it. A neighbor told police the hooded pair were seen again, trying to get into another home on the block....
Police Plan: Make Sure Air Show Crowds Stay Safe; to Prepare, Authorities Practiced in a Scenario Involving a Terrorist Attack
Byline: DREW DIXON The simulated helicopter crash following a simulated terrorist attack at a mock air show Thursday morning in Jacksonville Beach was intended to prepare people for the upcoming Sea and Sky Spectacular. The scenario could hardly...
Port Authority Donates Dirt to Help Save House; Dredging from a River Is Being Used to Shore Up a St. Johns County Home
Byline: TIMOTHY J. GIBBONS Dirt dredged from the bottom of the St. Johns River was put to more productive use Tuesday as the Jacksonville Port Authority gave some of the sand to a family whose house is on the verge of collapsing into the ocean....
PROPERTY TAX PLAN; Counties Starting to Count the Cost with a Plan in Place, They Can Estimate Their Losses
Byline: J. TAYLOR RUSHING TALLAHASSEE -- Property tax relief in Northeast Florida would come at a high cost to local governments, nearly $300 million over five years for Jacksonville and $74 million over the same period for Duval County public schools,...
Pruette Opposes Diverting River Water; the Neptune Beach Councilwoman Has Drawn Up a Resolution for a Vote
Byline: DREW DIXON Neptune Beach City Councilwoman Harriet Pruette is wondering why her city is alone in fighting a proposal to divert water from the St. Johns River in Central Florida instead of letting it continue to flow northward to its mouth...
Rescued from Guana, She's Looking for a Good Home
Byline: MAGGIE FITZROY She has big brown eyes. She loves to curl up in the laps of kind humans and give them kisses. She also likes to run and play, despite her disability, and is looking for a loving home - one worthy of "a princess." ...
Sea and Sky Spectacular Returns with Blue Angels in Starring Role; the Popular Air Show Is Expecting Thousands of Spectators
Byline: CAREN BURMEISTER JACKSONVILLE BEACH - Sonic booms will reverberate across the Beaches this week as the U.S. Navy Blue Angels soar at speeds up to 700 mph and leave vapor trails across the sky. The Blue Angels are darlings of the Jacksonville...
SEMINOLES NOTEBOOK; FSU Running Game Aims to Be 'Physical'
Byline: IRA SCHOFFEL TALLAHASSEE - Florida State's resurgent ground attack has produced a 100-yard rusher in each of the past two games, but the Seminoles will be hard-pressed to extend that streak another week. This Saturday at No. 2 Boston...
'Snitch Confession' Spreads across the City; A Prosecutor Says One Drug Suspect Used a Public Record Law to Intimidate Another
Byline: BRIDGET MURPHY Authorities said both men broke the law as part of a cocaine-trafficking ring that did hundreds of thousands of dollars of business in Jacksonville. One of them turned on some of his co-defendants, pleading guilty in exchange...
Status Still Uncertain for 'Canes QB Wright
Miami quarterback Kyle Wright was on the practice field Tuesday, but his status for the Hurricanes' game this weekend against North Carolina State remains unclear. Wright has a sprained left ankle and a sprained tendon behind his left knee. He was...
Take to the Court with Three Good NBA Choices
Byline: ROBERT McGINTY There is parity in the NBA this year, at least as far as video games go. With three titles to choose from and not really a drastic difference in quality between them, the best plan for a purchase would be to go with what you...
The Dawgs' Great Victory Echoed Long
Byline: Terry Dickson ST. SIMONS ISLAND - You would think folks would have returned to their everyday misery by now. Gas prices are headed back up. Economists say we're headed for a recession. The drought continues for most of Georgia. But...
Things That Go Bump in the Night in Fernandina Beach
Byline: KEVIN TURNER FERNANDINA BEACH - Fernandina history is rife with ghosts and hauntings, according to docents who lead Amelia Island Museum of History's ghost tours. Jana Rainey of Fernandina Beach recently went on the tour for the first...
This Car Fits My Needs Quite Well, Especially at 30 Miles per Gallon
Byline: Bill Longenecker Bill's new car adventure update leads off this episode of BillLabs, my semi-serious testing service for products to enhance beach life. My new car still smells like a new car after five months. With just over 3,000 miles,...
T-U 2
SCARY WISHES Happy Halloween. On the day of creepy, scary thoughts and deeds, here are some for the sports world: - Once Tim Tebow's shoulder heals, Urban Meyer moves him to linebacker to take advantage of his toughness (scary for opposing ball...
Unbeaten Pats, Colts Center of 'Circus'
Byline: Vito Stellino This is the year the NFL is having a one-game regular season. That one game is scheduled Sunday when the 8-0 New England Patriots visit the 7-0 Indianapolis Colts. Let the hype begin. "I think it will be a circus,"...
Up, Up and Upside Down: This Is No Roller Coaster; Writer Survives Ride in Stunt Plane, and So Does His Dinner
Byline: GORDON JACKSON Maj. John Klatt ruined roller coaster rides for the rest of my life. An Air National Guard pilot, Klatt is one of the nation's top aerobatic pilots. He took me for a 40-minute ride Tuesday to help publicize this weekend's...
Watch Who Answers the Door; Many Sex Offenders Aren't Allowed to Hand out Candy for Halloween Tonight
Byline: ADAM AASEN This Halloween parents aren't just worrying about toilet paper in trees and kids eating too much candy. Authorities want people to be aware of registered sex offenders who could be giving out treats this holiday. Under the...
Woman, 75, Beaten, Robbed at Post Office
Byline: KEVIN TURNER CALLAHAN - A 75-year-old Callahan woman was beaten and robbed Sunday inside the town's post office, the Nassau County Sheriff's Office reported Monday. Colleen Sapp was at the Callahan post office on Florida A1A at about...
Woman Gets a Shot at Stardom on Reality Show on Go-Cart Racing
Byline: MATT OLSEN A Westside woman is on her way to compete in a go-cart and car racing reality television show competition on Speed TV. Go-cart racer Kaitlin Mangham, 18, was selected to compete against other racers for a top-10 spot on Set-Up,...
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