No one could have been kinder to me when I was growing up than the couple who lived next door. She was my Sunday School teacher and taught me my Bible lessons. He was my adult playmate, who always saved a sandwich for me in his lunch pail and brought me a big basket of candy bunnies for Easter. I spent a portion of every day in their household, and I loved them dearly. Still, I knew they both had feet of clay. The lady of the house often gossiped about her neighbors, and the man of the house was the neighborhood drunk.
I’ve repeated this story several times over the past few weeks. I usually have told it to people who couldn’t stop singing the praises of the former president. As you might notice, I do not respond well to hero worship. I have chosen not to enter any discussions about Ronald Reagan during a period when the country was mourning his death. In spite of the occasion, I had to say that I’ve never had a problem staying clear of idolatry. In my lifetime, I have met many people I’ve admired, but never anyone I’ve idolized.
By 10 a.m., Dan Beck has already begun walking his mail route, his feet beating out an inconstant but rapid rhythm against the pavement. Beck weaves his way down Ninth Street each week. He travels the grid of retail stores, restaurants and offices that constitute downtown Columbia.
He gradually alleviates the heft of his mailbag as he stops in at each store, quickly dropping off the envelopes and packages with a cursory wave to store owners.
As a young police officer patrolling the streets of the First Ward in the mid-1980s, Capt. Marvin “Moon” McCrary was often met with wary eyes, insults and indifference from residents.
He remembers people accusing him of being a sellout, calling him “Uncle Tom” and saying he was a black man obeying his master’s orders.
Even if Columbia had a Civilian Review Board to assist in investigating complaints against police, Columbia Police Chief Randy Boehm said it would not play a role in the current investigation of former officer Steven Rios.
Rios is currently being investigated in connection to the murder of MU student Jesse Valencia, whose body was found on East Campus on June 5. Boehm has repeatedly said Rios is not a suspect in the case at this time.
Arrow Rock bustled in the 1800s as a political and economic hot spot in Missouri. It boasted wealthy plantation owners, prominent doctors and Missouri governors.
Today the town, which was once populated by 1,000 people, is inhabited by only 70. A day trip to this place offers visitors a glimpse of what mid-Missouri was like a century ago.
The Pony Express rider who has watched over the City Council chambers from the canvas of Edward Buk Ulreich’s painting for the past 21 years is fading — his paint is slowly chipping and his fabric is beginning to fray. And soon, he won’t be there at all.
Next week, conservators from Page Conservation, working on behalf of the U.S. General Services Administration, which owns the mural as part of its Fine Arts Collection, will remove it from its place behind the council dais in the Daniel Boone Government Building and take it to Washington, D.C., to preserve it for posterity. There, it will be cleaned and restored to look as crisp as it did when Ulreich painted it in 1937. The mural will also be reunited and refurbished with its pair, “Indians Watching Stage in Distance,” currently housed in the old Federal Building. The Health Adventure Center sought to preserve this mural when it bought the Federal Building in September 2003.
Democratic state Senate candidates Chuck Graham and Tim Harlan agree on many issues. They both want affordable health care, plan to increase emphasis on higher education, think the funding formula for K-12 needs to be reconsidered and support worker’s compensation.
The two butt heads on one issue, however. In 2001, the Missouri General Assembly approved a bill to allocate $35 million to finance the building of a new basketball arena at MU. Bill and Nancy Laurie, private donors, had given $25 million for the building. Both Graham and Harlan were then House representatives. Graham sponsored the bill; Harlan opposed it on the floor.
A 32-year-old Columbia resident was shot in the chest Friday night on McBaine Avenue, Columbia police said. No suspects have been arrested yet; police are searching for three men in a dark-colored sport utility vehicle.
The victim was transported to an area hospital for treatment of a single gunshot wound to the upper chest. The victim’s identity and condition were unavailable Saturday.
ROCKAWAY BEACH — The town of Branson’s main industry is wholesome, family entertainment. Think Andy Williams and The Osmonds.
But the ringing of slot machines, the rattle of dice and the snap of a well-shuffled deck of cards threatens to drown that out, and it’s setting up a fight between the gambling industry and theater owners in the Ozarks.
WASHINGTON — Many Americans are like a loaf of bread — soft, with one side round. Their choice of bread may be part of the reason.
Some researchers say white bread and other refined grains seem to go to the gut and hang out as belly fat.
Authorities say a leg and beheaded torso found one day apart in the Missouri River are part of the same set of human remains.
The Missouri State Highway Patrol said it was investigating the dismemberment as a single homicide after the Boone County medical examiner confirmed Thursday that the DNA of the two body parts matches.
The Discovery Expedition of St. Charles has lost its best friend.
Seaman, the Newfoundland dog who brought joy to thousands of people along the path of the Lewis and Clark expedition, died Wednesday. He was 20 months old.
John Sappington, prominent doctor, plantation-owner and resident of Arrow Rock, donated land for two cemeteries just outside of downtown prior to his death in 1856.
The Sappington Cemetery contains gravestones for Arrow Rock residents, several Sappington family members and two Missouri governors — Meredith Miles Marmaduke and Claiborne Fox Jackson. Marmaduke was Missouri’s eighth governor and served in 1844 after the death of Gov. Thomas Reynolds.
For a few seconds, I stood on a sun-burnt bronze circle planted into the ground to mark the country’s “center of population,” a few feet to the right of the cemetery in Edgar Springs.
For those few seconds on April 19, I stood in my black Adidas sneakers, put my feet as close together as I could, looked down and pictured myself balancing the United States on my finger — half the population to my left, half to my right.
Today we honor all of the Dads. My husband is the BEST Dad ever. And I have four sons and two sons-in-law who are showing signs of greatness. Every year around this time I start reminiscing about when my father was alive.
My Dad wasn’t the “Leave it to Beaver” kind of father. He was a gruff man who seldom smiled. That made it all the more magical when he did. He could curse like a sailor (although he was a career Army man) or be as gentle as a lamb when he held my infant son.
Seated comfortably at his station as doorman at Columbia’s Eastside Tavern, Josh Windle lifts the sleeve of his black shirt to reveal an image of an agonized Jesus tattooed upon his right upper arm. The Christian savior’s hair tangles around a gnarled crown of thorns from which blood drops to a wreath of roses around his neck.
Windle’s arm is so large, his skin is so white and Christ’s face so anguished that the effect is stark, even startling.
Boone County Circuit Judge Gene Hamilton declared a mistrial Thursday when jurors returned deadlocked after nearly nine hours of deliberations in the second-degree involuntary manslaughter trial of Marcus Floyd.
Assistant Prosecutor Richard Hicks said if there is a new trial, he imagined it would be a couple of months after a July 5 hearing date set by Hamilton.
Academic reform could hit MU’s athletics department hard this fall.
Both the MU Faculty Council and the National Collegiate Athletic Association are working on measures to increase graduation rates among student athletes.
The sun isn’t the only thing causing temperatures to rise this summer. Filmmaker Michael Moore’s latest production, “Fahrenheit 9/11,” is likely to set opinions ablaze across the nation and will soon be kindling reactions in mid-Missouri.
Based on the book “House of Bush, House of Saud” by Craig Unger, the movie critiques President Bush’s war on terrorism and alleges Bush family ties to Osama bin Laden. The title is meant as a further jab at Bush because it invokes “Fahrenheit 451,” Ray Bradbury’s novel about government censorship. Goodrich Quality Theaters confirmed the movie will come to the Columbia Forum 8 on June 25. Currently there are no plans for advance ticket sales, though sales for a Friday release typically start Tuesday or Wednesday before opening night.
The Ann Taylor Loft opened Thursday in the Columbia Mall, the fifth and final store to settle into the shopping center’s new Fountain Court.
Chico’s, Coldwater Creek, Jos. A. Bank and the Ann Taylor Loft recently joined an existing Talbot’s store as part of the mall’s new “lifestyle” area, a current trend in the mall industry that features upscale stores in an open-air setting, said Leslie McKay, the Columbia Mall marketing coordinator.