Wednesday, August 29, 2012

Blue to Gold: Remembering Our Troops

You may have noticed our new "Remembering Our Troops" section. Whether you did notice or missed it, we wanted to share a little bit about the section.

We want to honor our American soldiers, specificaly those who give the ultimate sacrifice, and lose their lives in the service of the country. We are grateful for and respect them.

From now on, every time a US soldier is killed in combat, there will be a short post about them.

Kim Hedum has been gracious enough to commit to this effort. She herself is a blue star mom, and we hope that it stays forever blue.

We hope that the section sees no use, but it shall ensure that none are forgotten.

Each post for this section will start with "Blue to Gold".

Many people are not aware of the significants of flags such as the one pictured. They are kept in windows of houses across America.

Each star represents a family member who is in the military. Blue signifies that they are serving. Silver that they were wounded in combat. Gold that they were killed in action. A star is never replaced. If necessary it is sewn over with the new color of thread.

Cow Trapped in Tree

In Cumbria, England a cow had to be rescued from a tree.

The cow had fallen down a hill, into the branches of a tree, and become trapped.

Firemen were called out to rescue it, but had to wait for a winch to arrive, to life the cow.

A vet tranquilized the cow, even then fire crews wore body armor just in case the cow lashed out.

The cow is apparently fine, but bruised, and her owner is grateful to the rescuers.

Hundreds of Body Parts Found in Pensacola Storage Unit

A man in Pensacola, Florida made a rather unwelcome discovery after he bought the contents of a storage unit, at auction.

When he entered the unit he noticed a rather horrid stench, and found out why when he investigated.

Hundreds of body parts and organs had been stored in the unit, which had been previously owned by Dr. Michael Berkland.

Berkland formerly was a medical examiner for the state of Florida, from 1997 to 2003.

He had been let go for not filling out autopsy reports and suspicion of carrying out unauthorized autopsies.

Police suspect that the organs may have been stolen from bodies he had worked on, and are searching for Berkland.

Storage unit contents are often put up for auction, if their owner fails to pay for the rent for several years.

Pueblo Police Officer Wounded in Shooting

Pueblo County Sheriff received reports of a man shooting at cars near Hollywood Drive and Canterbury Lane, Wednesday morning.

An officer responded to the call and was shot twice before he returned fire and killed his attacked.

The officer is St. Mary Corwin Emergency and will recover.

Pueblo Police Department, County Sheriff’s Office, Colorado State Patrol, and the 10th Judicial District Attorney’s Office are all involved in the investigation.

Suspect Dies After Wheat Ridge Standoff

Just before 1pm on Tuesday, Wheat Ridge and Westminster police showed up at the Ramada Inn at 4700 Kipling Street.

They came looking for Gary Haney to arrest him for identity theft, criminal impersonation, and forgery.

Haney refused to open the door and stated he was armed.

Guests at the hotel were then evacuated.

After nine hours of standoff, SWAT forced entry into the room and shots were fired after Haney made threatening gestures with his weapon.

He was later declared dead at St. Anthony's Central Hospital, in Lakewood.

No officers were injured in the incident.

Two nation wide warrants were out for Haney, and it is unclear why he was in Colorado. 

Police Peacefully End Standoff in Downtown Denver

Denver Police surrounded a building at 2250 Lawrence Street Wednesday morning, shutting down the street between 22nd Street and Park Avenue.

A suspect in an auto theft task force investigation had apparently holed himself up there.

SWAT appeared in full gear, and ended up using a robot with a battering ram to gain entry.

Shortly after entry was forced several SWAT officers made their way in, and came back out with the handcuffed suspect.

Neighboring business and buildings were evacuated during the standoff.
This was the second standoff in two days for the metro area, following a deadly one in Wheat Ridge, on Tuesday.


WWII Bomb Found at Schiphol Airport

Schiphol Airport in Amsterdam is having a day of it.

Not only have they dealt with a hijacking scare, that luckily turned out to be just failed communication, but a bomb was also found at the airport.

Near Terminal C, an unexploded bomb from World War II was discovered this morning.

The 1,100 pound bomb was discovered at a construction site, and has been safely removed.

During World War II, the airport was a military base, and was bombed repeatedly by both sides.

It is now the fifth busiest airport in Europe.

Forty Percent Increase of West Nile Virus in a Week

On Wednesday, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention announced that cases of West Nile Virus are up forty percent from last week.

An increase was expected, due to the time of year, but this year has already seen very large numbers of cases.

So far there have been nearly 1,600 reported cases, sixty-six of which have been fatal.

Almost half of those have been in the state of Texas.

With this weekend being one of the biggest outdoor holidays for the US, people are being warned to be extra cautious about being near mosquito infested areas.

It can take up to two weeks for people with the virus to even get sick, and there are a whole slew of symptoms, including: headache, high fever, neck stiffness, stupor, disorientation, coma, tremors, convulsions, muscle weakness, and paralysis.

Some cities, especially Dallas, Texas, have begun aerial spraying in attempts to kill off the infected mosquito population.

BLUE to GOLD: Army Staff Sgt. Jessica M. Wing

ARMY Staff Sgt. Jessica M. Wing, 42, of Alexandria, VA, died August 27, in Kuwait City, Kuwait.  She was assigned to the 1st Battalion, 126th Aviation Regiment, Bangor, Maine.

BLUE to GOLD: Army Spc. Mabry J. Anders

ARMY Spc. Mabry J. Anders, 21, of Baker City, Oregon, died August 27, in Kalagush, Afghanistan, of injuries suffered from enemy, small arms fire. He was assigned to the 4th Special Troops Battalion, 4th Brigade Combat Team, 4th Infantry Division, Fort Carson, Colorado.

BLUE to GOLD: Army Sgt. Christopher J. Birdwell

ARMY Sgt. Christopher J. Birdwell, 25, of Windsor, CO, died August 27, in Kalagush, Afghanistan, of injuries suffered from enemy, small arms fire.  He was assigned to the 4th Special Troops Battalion, 4th Brigade Combat Team, 4th Infantry Division, Fort Carson, CO.

Duel in Denver

Saturday, September 8 at 7pm will be the day of the Duel in Denver, at Dick's Sporting Goods Park.

Team Canada visits Team USA for a rematch of the 2010 Federation of International Lacrosse World Championship gold medal game.

In that game, which took place in Manchester, England, the US beat Canada 12-10.

The Duel will begin the selection of the Team USA for the 2014 Championships and be the first game for new head coach Richie Meade.

The 2014 FIL World Championships will be held at Dick's Sporting Goods Park July 10-19, 2014, and this is the park's chance to show off before then.

At least forty countries and over a thousand players will be taking part in the championships.

Sherriff Arrested for Slapping Handcuffed Man

Charleston County Sheriff Al Cannon pleaded guilty, on Tuesday, of slapping a handcuffed man.

A twenty-four year veteran, of the South Carolina county, he will face a five hundred dollar fine and be sent to anger management.

The slapping incident happened January 30 after he and deputies were forced to shoot out the tires of a pickup, that had led them on a twenty-five mile long chase with speeds over one hundred and twenty miles per hour, after hitting a police vehicle.

Cannon admitted that the slapping was "inappropriate and was especially inappropriate for the head of a law enforcement agency to act in such a manner."

The booking of Cannon occurred at the Al Cannon Detention Center, which is named for the Sheriff.

Hijacking Scare Caused by Lack of Communication

Lack of communication from a Spanish airline pilot led to a hijacking scare over the Netherlands, on Wednesday.

Dutch air traffic control followed protocol when radio contact was lost and triggered a security alert.

F16s were scrambled, intercepted the airliner, and escorted it into landing.

Upon landing at Amsterdam's Schiphol airport it was surrounded by Dutch security officers who boarded the plane and searched it.

At this time the passengers are still being held on board, though as the plane has been cleared it is unclear why.

The Vueling aircraft had been flying from Malaga, Spain to Amsterdam, with one hundred and eighty passengers aboard.

Earlier in the day the airport had dealt with a bomb scare.

Three Georgians Killed in Fight Against Militants

Three Georgian soldiers were killed in a rescue mission on Wednesday.

Near the border with Russia, in the Kakheti region, militants had taken several civilians hostage.

Georgian troops were called into rescue the hostages on Tuesday.

During a firefight with the hostage takers three soldiers were killed, five were wounded, eleven militants were killed, and all the hostages were safe.

The standoff is continuing with six remaining militants hiding out in a gorge, surrounded by Georgian Interior Ministry forces.

It is believed that the group are extremists who crossed over from the Russian area of Dagestan, in the Caucasus.

Dagestan is an area that insurgents have tried to form their own Islamist nation in.

3 Year Old Told He Can't Sign His Name

A three year old in Nebraska has been told, by his preschool, that he can no longer say his name.

Three year old Hunter Spanjer is deaf and uses the SEE form of sign language to talk.

Grand Island Public Schools has a policy which forbids any use of any instrument that looks like a weapon, and they consider his signing to look like he's waving a gun.

His family have set up a Facebook page as a way to get their story out and as a petition against the school.

The ACLU and the National Association of the Deaf have joined the family's cause, defending the right of Hunter to say his name.