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Are you ready for fall?
9/16/2021 9:09:02 PM

By Dr. James L. Snyder   With such a tumultuous summer, I’m glad we are now beginning the fall season. There for a while, I didn’t think it was going to come. But, contrary to my negativity, it has arrived, and I’m delighted. Summer wasn’t quite the way summers have been in the past. My family didn’t have many get-togethers and picnics like we normally do. However, we did have one, and that had to do for the summer. I’m hoping next summer we can catch up. During the past summer, the Gracious Mistress of the Parsonage said several...

Actor Michael K. Williams, Omar on ‘The Wire,’ dead at 54
9/7/2021 8:12:59 PM

By Michael R. Sisak and Andrew Dalton   NEW YORK (AP) — Actor Michael K. Williams, who as the rogue robber of drug dealers Omar Little on “The Wire” created one of the most beloved and enduring characters in a prime era of television, died Monday. Williams was found dead Monday afternoon by family members in his Brooklyn penthouse apartment, New York City police said. He was 54. His death was being investigated as a possible drug overdose, the NYPD said. The medical examiner was investigating the cause of death. Little, a “stick-up...

Sheriff's official claims retaliation for announcing Villanueva challenge
9/7/2021 8:08:50 PM

LOS ANGELES—A Los Angeles County sheriff's official running to replace Sheriff Alex Villanueva said Tuesday he is exploring legal options after he was demoted from chief to commander because of his campaign challenging his boss. "What the sheriff did today is not only wrong, it goes against every procedure, and rule, laid out in our department and across the county," Eliezer Vera said during a downtown Los Angeles news conference. "Alex decided to do something unprecedented for what are clear political reasons, this is unfortunate." Vera, a 32-year...

RFK’s widow to board: Sirhan Sirhan should not be set free
9/7/2021 8:05:55 PM

LOS ANGELES—Robert F. Kennedy's widow said Tuesday that his killer, Sirhan Sirhan, should not be freed, despite the recommendation of a parole board last month. "Bobby believed we should work to ‘tame the savageness of man and make gentle the life of the world.' He wanted to end the war in Vietnam and bring people together to build a better, stronger country. More than anything, he wanted to be a good father and loving husband," Ethel Kennedy, 93, said in a statement Tuesday. "Our family and our country suffered an unspeakable loss due to the...

USC football legend Sam ‘Bam' Cunningham dead at 71
9/7/2021 8:00:25 PM

INGLEWOOD—Sam "Bam" Cunningham, an All-American fullback at USC and College Football Hall of Famer who went on to become the New England Patriots' franchise leader in rushing, died Tuesday in Inglewood at age 71, according to the university. A cause of death was not immediately announced. Cunningham helped lead the Trojans to a 1972 national championship, capping his All-America season. He scored four touchdowns in the 1973 Rose Bowl, earning him MVP honors. Cunningham is also credited with helping spark the integration of college football in the Deep South,...

First responders nationwide resist COVID vaccine mandates
9/7/2021 7:53:46 PM

By Stefanie Dazio   Philadelphia—March 11, 2021. It was supposed to be a turning point in the coronavirus pandemic for Erin Tokley, a longtime Philadelphia police officer, Baptist minister and 47-year-old father of three. It was supposed to be the day of his vaccine appointment. Instead it was the date of his funeral. Tokley—“Toke” to his friends and family—died on March 3, becoming the Philadelphia Police Department's sixth confirmed COVID-19 death. Philadelphia officers first became eligible for their shots in late January and...

Remembering Tupac: Las Vegas killing unsolved after 25 years
9/7/2021 7:49:15 PM

By Jason Bracelin   LAS VEGAS (AP)—The last scene of his life unfolds in 12 grainy seconds. Tupac Shakur's swinging hard in the final footage captured of him alive. It's 8:49 p.m. on Sept. 7, 1996. Heavyweight champ Mike Tyson has just broken down Bruce Seldon without breaking a sweat at the MGM Grand hotel, dispatching his foe in 109 seconds, ending things with a left hook unleashed like a tiger from a cage. Shakur's hyped after the bout. “Twenty blows! Twenty blows!” associates recall him exclaiming upon Tyson's...

Black farmers awaiting billions in promised debt relief
9/7/2021 7:45:11 PM

By Roxana Hegeman and Allen G. Breed   BOYDTON, Va. (AP)—There was a time when Black farms prospered. Just two generations out of slavery, by 1910 Black farmers had amassed more than 16 million acres of land and made up about 14 percent of farmers. The fruit of their labors fed much of America. Now, they have fewer than 4.7 million acres. Black farms in the U.S. plummeted from 925,000 to fewer than 36,000, according to the U.S. Department of Agriculture's latest farm census. And only about one in 100 farmers is Black. What happened? They were able to...

Virus pushes some California hospitals near ICU capacity
9/7/2021 7:35:23 PM

SACRAMENTO (AP)—Hospitals in the heart of California's Central Valley are running out of beds in their intensive care units, state officials announced Friday, as a more contagious version of the coronavirus continues to spread primarily among the unvaccinated population. Hospitals in the eight-county San Joaquin Valley region have had fewer than 10% of staffed adult ICU beds for three consecutive days. State officials labeled it a “surge,” triggering special rules announced last month that require nearby hospitals to accept transfer patients. In Fresno County...

Wildfires, smoke snuff out outdoor adventures across U.S.
9/7/2021 7:26:33 PM

By Brian Melley   LOS ANGELES (AP)—Andy Farquhar's plans for an outdoor adventure have gone up in smoke twice this summer. The retired attorney and teacher from the Philadelphia area had planned to hike with a friend for several weeks on the Pacific Crest Trail north of Lake Tahoe until the second-largest fire in California history stampeded across the Sierra Nevada, closing a 160-mile (257-kilometer) stretch of the trail and blanketing the region in thick smoke. “I saw a satellite view of where we were going, and all it was was fire,” he...