Walker back in lineup

ST. LOUIS — Larry Walker, returning to the St. Louis Cardinals’ lineup Wednesday after missing five straight starts with a herniated disc in his neck, hit home runs in his first two at-bats against the Cincinnati Reds.

The often-injured outfielder hopes a cortisone shot he received on Monday will allow him to play to his ability. He’s struggled while dealing with several ailments this season, hitting .247 with seven home runs and 29 RBIs in 58 games. Walker, 38, has talked of retiring after the season.

MU trains firefighters in auto rescue

Pleasant Valley assistant fire chief Scott Clark knows that responding to an accident isn’t simply rushing to it. Now, many of his firefighters know, too.

“The fire department and EMS in general are pretty good at rushing in because that’s what we have always done,” said Clark, the training officer for the Pleasant Valley Fire Department. “Now, they’ll slow up a little more and find the hidden dangers.”

Priday named as Freshman All-American

Baseball America named Missouri outfielder Jacob Priday to its Freshman All-America Team on Wednesday.

Priday hit .305 in 60 games with the Tigers last season. He led the team with nine home runs and 67 RBIs.

Miss Mo. prepares for Atlantic City

Missouri’s contestant in the Miss America pageant started this year’s pageant bid as Miss Columbia.

But she’s never lived in Columbia.

Tighter rules sought in child murders

Bothered by the difficulty of charging the parents of 3-year-old Erica Green with first-degree murder, House Minority Leader Jeff Harris, D-Columbia, wants to toughen child-abuse homicide laws.

Erica was known as “Precious Doe” for years while Kansas City police struggled to identify her decapitated body, which was found in April 2001 in a wooded area near a church. Her head was found nearby in a trash bag a few days later.

Study: Italian stereotypes might fit Americans

From Don Corleone to Rocky Balboa, the popular portrayal of Italian and Italian-American men can be less than flattering. Think sleeveless T-shirts, gold chains and hot tempers.

Fuhgedaboutit? Forget about it.


About 500 children attended the 15th annual Rottmann Memorial Kids’ Fishing Clinic on June 11. A photo caption in the June 12 edition contained incorrect information. Marcia Flesner’s name was misspelled in a quotation with a story Tuesday about her collection of nursing books.

Academy attracts Mo.’s top teens

Kara Oberkrom is finishing her final week at the Missouri Scholars Academy and isn’t quite ready to go home.

“There’s a sense of community that makes (the program) great,” said Kara, one of 330 high school juniors participating in the three-week academic program. The scholars academy, run by the Missouri Department of Elementary and Secondary Education, is held each year on the MU campus and attracts teens and faculty from around the state.

Extra credit for Rainbow House

The Missouri Department of Economic Development has ap-proved $230,680 in tax credits for Rainbow House, an emergency shelter for abused and neglected children and regional child advo-cacy center.

Organizations apply for the tax credit as part of the Department of Economic Development’s Youth Opportunities Program. Rainbow House is now a beneficiary of the program.

Social Security plans questioned

Missourians United to Protect Social Security unveiled a report on Tuesday saying the Bush administration’s plans to privatize Social Security and reduce benefits would jeopardize the financial future of 386,120 rural residents statewide who receive checks each month.

“I’m really troubled that this administration would want to replace a program that has relieved more people living their golden years in abject poverty than any other program,” state Rep. Wes Shoemyer, D-Clarence, said during a news conference detailing the findings of the report.

A crush on crustaceans

While in graduate school at Virginia Tech University, Bob DiStefano won a $50 prize for dressing up in a homemade crayfish costume fashioned out of red foam and cardboard. More than 20 years later, he’s still getting paid to dress like a crayfish.

Granted, that probably isn’t in his job description.

Nursing an interest

A dozen years ago, Marcia Flesner, a clinical instructor at the MU Sinclair School of Nursing and president of District 7 of the Missouri Nurses Association, started collecting nursing books published before the 1950s with her partner, Diane Spalding.

By then, Spalding, a nurse practitioner, had been collecting old nursing books for years, and Flesner was drawn into Spalding’s collector’s world.

Area Briefly

Two more arrests have been made in connection with an armed assault on two people that occurred Monday in the area of Providence Road and Business Loop 70.

The male victim was shot in the shoulder and has been treated and released from a local hospital. The female victim was held at gunpoint and forced to drive east of Columbia until an assailant exited the car.

Attacked woman in serious condition

Seventy-two-year-old Earlene Bradshaw was sitting in her lawn chair, snapping beans for a dinner she was having with family and friends. Described as small but tough, Bradshaw was suddenly struck in the face with a board.

The blow, which was meant for her son, knocked Bradshaw backward in her chair, causing her to hit her head against the sidewalk. As of Tuesday evening, Bradshaw was in serious condition and on life-support. She was admitted to University Hospital on Monday night with internal injuries to her head, family members said.

Umpire’s love of the game still strong

It wasn’t supposed to be Max McLeary’s job to rub the baseballs before the Mavericks’ 16-2 loss to Kalamazoo Tuesday night.

That honor goes to the home plate umpire. McLeary was scheduled to work the bases.

Bucks select Bogut

NEW YORK — It sure was a g’day for Andrew Bogut. And not a bad night for the NCAA champions from North Carolina.

Bogut, a 7-foot center from Australia, was chosen No. 1 Tuesday night in the NBA draft by the Milwaukee Bucks, becoming the first player in five years with U.S. college experience to be drafted No. 1 overall.

Local channels vie for contract funds

A tug of war over cable fees among Columbia’s local broadcast stations dominated a city hearing Monday night. The Cable Task Force meeting was intended to allow the public to sound off on a new cable television contract to be written by the end of the year.

A 15-year franchise agreement between the city and cable providers Mediacom and Charter Communications ends Jan. 1, and the city wants to write a new contract by that time.

The big business of handbags

Born in the 14th century as a way for men to hold flint, money and a variety of objects, purses were once quite small. But the whims of society and the ever-brutal demands of fashion have come to force their growth and expansion. This year, women are catching the bug of big, and designers and retail stores are supplying larger handbags. Gone are the small shoulder clutches from last year.

“We’ve definitely gotten more big bags in,” said Jenna Hiller, employee of A Matter of Style at the Columbia Mall. Courtney Faron, manager of Britches, said that store also is stocking more large purses.

Tradition on Tap

A new restaurant in Columbia is brewing up some old favorites with some new twists. Grindstone Brewery at 47 E. Broadway opened on May 27.

“We’re improving ourselves quietly, and then we can promote the business,” says co-proprietor Sam Chou. “We want to be in tip-top shape before we promote ourselves.”

Mulder makes up for previous mistakes

ST. LOUIS — Mark Mulder ended a string of poor starts and Reggie Sanders backed him with a two-run home run, helping the St. Louis Cardinals beat the Cincinnati Reds 2-1 Tuesday night.

The Cardinals have won three of four, giving them an NL-best record of 48-28. They sent the Reds to their 15th loss in 17 road games.