Missouri insurance regulators say Aflac to pay $1.6 million

Aflac Inc. will pay $700,000 to the state, an additional $700,000 to Minnesota and $200,000 to Idaho to settle allegations about its business practices.

Arsenal investors critical of how Kroenke runs team

Investors have accused owner Stan Kroenke of selling Arsenal's best players and replacing them with cheaper ones.

Residents, visitors tell what they like best about Fourth of July

In honor of Independence Day, two Missourian reporters wandered around Columbia and asked people the question: "What is your favorite Fourth of July tradition or memory?" Whether they were visitors just in town for the holiday or Columbia residents, everyone had something to say about why they enjoy the Fourth of July.

UPDATE: Ashland siblings electrocuted at Lake of the Ozarks

Alexandra Anderson, 13, and Brayden Anderson, 8, were electrocuted Wednesday afternoon while swimming near a private dock at the Lake of the Ozarks.

Second-generation immigrant struggles to find motivation of his parents

Ezana Gebru, 25, has idled in college for seven years and remains a semester away from finishing his degrees. His parents are Ethiopian immigrants, who, through dogged determination, narrowly escaped poverty and persecution to chase the American Dream. Now Ezana is trying to find his footing in his parents' world as well as his own.

Chestnut wins 6th straight hot dog eating title, downs 68 dogs

Joey Chestnut won his sixth straight Fourth of July hot dog-eating contest at Coney Island, downing 68 dogs and buns in 10 minutes on Wednesday to tie his personal best in a sweaty, gag-inducing spectacle.

Eureka! Physicists celebrate evidence of Higgs boson, the 'God particle'

With the discovery of  "the missing cornerstone of physics," scientists celebrate the apparent end of a decade-long quest for a new subatomic particle.

IN THEIR OWN WORDS: Springfield couple cites education, hard work, marriage for success

For this Springfield couple, the American Dream is about being comfortable. They'll explain what comfort is to them and how they achieved their personal American Dream.

IN THEIR OWN WORDS: Sarah Johnson, 38, St. Louis bookstore

Sarah Johnson, aka Jonesey, explains her life and what events led her to come up with her personalized version of the American Dream.

DAVID ROSMAN: Much of EEZ doesn't seem to fall under blight definition

Even with the governor’s signature, SB 628’s language concerning the definition of "blight" found in section 135.950 and 135.953, nothing will change.

J. KARL MILLER: A response to Boone County Democrats

J. Karl Miller offers a rebuttal to the Boone County Democratic Party Central Committee's guest commentary featured in the Missourian.

IN THEIR OWN WORDS: Caleb Foglesong, 18, Kirksville

Caleb Foglesong, 18, is a senior and the student body president at Kirksville High School. He analyzes the class divide within the high school and shares his theory of what makes children become successful in life.

Edwards knows team is better than results show

With nine races to go to set the Chase for the Sprint Cup championship field, Columbia native Carl Edwards is in danger of missing the 12-driver field.

Mid-Missouri Peace Coalition hosts Fourth of July gathering

The Mid-Missouri Peace Coalition held a peace rally in front of the Boone County Courthouse in order to promote its idea of a "peace economy."

Backyard fire in Columbia likely caused by fireworks, official says

Fireworks likely caused a backyard fire in north Columbia on Wednesday afternoon, Columbia Fire Department Capt. Don Zielinski said. The fire damaged grass and a portion of a shed.

Veterans return to Columbia after Honor Flight to Washington, D.C.

Veterans returned to Columbia early on the Fourth of July from the 19th Central Missouri Honor Flight. The group participated in a daylong trip to Washington, D.C.

IN THEIR OWN WORDS: Brett Moser, 26, Kirksville

I see some people who say that the American Dream is just getting by — it's just surviving. It's just doing what you have to do to put food on the table and make things work.

Missouri softball lands Florida transfer

Sami Fagan, who posted the fifth-best average in the Southeastern Conference last season, will have to sit out the 2013 season but will have three years of eligibility remaining.

IN THEIR OWN WORDS: Joel Booth thinks about history and the American Dream

Our generation has been given more than any other generation, and we have to retrain our thinking. Instead of being expected to be given something, we have to expect to earn what we’re gonna get.

Extreme heat, drought putting Missouri wildlife in danger

Across the state, experts say wildlife is being adversely affected by the heightened temperatures and dry conditions.