It's all about the creativity

Gary Reynolds is a leather-and woodworker in MVE's engraving department. Reynolds was incarcerated in 1979 and won't be eligible for release until 2028. It is the creative part of his job that he relishes. He hand-carves wooden state seals and designs leather purses, billfolds and ID holders for state employees and not-for-profits. In his free time, Reynolds teaches art classes and enjoys drawing antiques.

I-70 accident scene

Firefighters respond to the scene of a two-car accident at 4208 I-70 Drive which left one man dead and another with minor injuries.

Defective parts

Defective parts stand as stacks of scrap outside the EPC building in Columbia. The company says the assembly line’s efficiency must be improved for the company to stay in business, particularly the “first run” — the initial batch of a new product.

An empty employee cafeteria

From left, Jesse Dutton, Glenda Shackelford, Larry Houston and Tim Benton are the only assembly line workers still employed by Engineered Plastic Components. The room they are sitting in are would have been filled with workers only a few months before. Workers at EPC in Columbia convene in the building’s cafeteria for a break during the day. “It hurts to see everyone getting laid off,” said Glenda Shackelford, one of the last four employees still working on the assembly line. “It’s like family getting laid off.”

Working the assembly line

Larry Houston works on the only assembly line still operating at EPC. A year ago, four people would have been stationed along the line that he sometimes operates on his own.

Medical examiners investigate house fire

Boone County medical examiners investigate the scene of a fire that occurred in a trailer on Ray Lea Lane in Columbia. One man was killed in the blaze.

House fire leaves one man dead

Boone County medical examiners and law enforcement officials investigate the scene of a fire that occurred in a trailer on Ray Lea Lane in Columbia early Wednesday morning.

Humidity effects dumpster operators

Reginald Harper operates a garbage truck at the Columbia's Sanitary Landfill on Tuesday.

Heat takes toll on car

Roger Shuck examines his overheated Chevrolet Scottsdale truck on the side of U.S. 63 near Sturgeon around 2:30 p.m. on Tuesday.

Skulls on a shelf

Skulls decorate the office of MU professor David Geary. The skulls are a species of the Australopithecines and of the early bipedal primates.

Fans in firework stand

Madison Blumenschein, Ryan Kalbfleisch and Matt Myler rest in front of two fans inside the Bob's Fireworks tent on Tuesday.

MU brain analyst

David Geary is an MU professor who has done research on the evolution of brains. In a research experiment, Geary and associates discovered the human brain has quadrupled in size primarily because of social competition.

Pining for cool at Pinnacles Youth Park

Justin Lutz holds Orion Alexander in the Silver Fork Creek Falls at Pinnacles Youth Park on Tuesday. Alison Alexander and Jade Alexander sit on the shore.

Demarre Carroll draft possibilities

MU men's basketball player Demarre Carroll during a home game against California on Dec. 7, 2008.

Lyons prepares for draft

MU’s Leo Lyons dribbles in for a shot at the MU vs. Baylor University men’s basketball game in the Mizzou Arena on Saturday, Jan. 31. The Tigers won the game 89-72.

Ceramic figures at Peggy's Gifts

Ceramic figures are among the gift items for sale at Peggy's Gifts, owned by Peggy Hurst. The store opened Dec. 15.

Peggy Hurst, proprietor of Peggy's Gifts in Columbia

Peggy Hurst, proprietor of Peggy's Gifts in Columbia, checks her gift card inventory. Hurst opened the shop in December of 2008.

Lottery winners unite

Jim Wilson jokes with children from a St. Louis day care during a reunion of former winners in the Missouri Lottery at Saint Louis Science Center on Tuesday. The reunion brings together two dozen lottery-made millionaires, like Wilson whose father won $254 million in the lottery in 2007.

Tough times mean tighter pants for stress eaters

Leslie Fuller, 51, is pictured outside her home in Las Vegas. Fuller says she has gained back weight she lost due to stress eating.

Stress eating causes Americans to put on pounds

Leslie Fuller, 51, walks her dog Sirabi near her home in Las Vegas on June 13. Fuller says she has gained back weight she lost due to stress eating.