Seminar provides disaster training for health professionals

Missouri is the perfect state to be a leading model in disaster prevention and response, according to Roberto Dansie, a psychologist.

“Missouri has the ability of helping people of very different backgrounds find common unity,” said Dansie, the recipient of this year’s International Center for Psychosocial Trauma’s Humanitarian Award.

Columbia girls to attend national student leadership conference

Columbia, your future leaders are in the making: Xiaoke “Jessica” Cui and Jamie Andes, both 14 and ninth-graders this fall at West Junior High School, will get leadership advice this month from moti-vational speakers such as Oprah Winfrey.

Both girls were selected to attend the 69th annual National Association of Student Councils National Conference, June 25-29 in Collinsville, Ill.


A May 22, Israeli, Palestinian bring message of peace, incorrectly identified the killer of Nadwa Sarandah's sister, Naela Kara'in. According to reports in the Palestinian Human Rights Monitor, Kara'in's killer was a Palestinian. Parents Circle, which sponsored the tour that brought Sarandah to MU on May 20, could not confirm that. Also, to clarify, Yitzhak Frankenthal founded the Parents Circle and headed it for nine years before stepping down in 2004.

Homicide investigation widens

Investigators are looking for a 34-year-old Fulton man identified as a “person of interest” in the death of a 28-year-old woman.

Francis H. Kempker lived across the street from Shawnda Reed, who was found dead in her home at 414 Tanglewood Way in Fulton on June 7, investigators said.

New pupils to get a helping hand

A program to help Columbia children get ready for school is scheduled to open in August.

On Monday, the Columbia School Board approved the Park Avenue Child and Family Development Center, a partnership between Columbia Public Schools and Head Start. The center is part of the school district’s Early Childhood Initiative, which seeks to expand programs that serve needy students to help close the achievement gap between students of different class groups.

A brother lost

James and Mary Lou Ballenger stood in the crowd reading aloud the names of each service area represented by dozens of utility crews before their trucks turned onto Broadway and passed beneath a large American flag.

Columbia. Monroe City. Higginsville. Hannibal. Fulton. Boone County. Centralia. Independence.

E-mail policy at MU to be clarified

The University of Missouri System does not have a clear and complete policy on e-mail privacy, and individual campuses are responding.

At its meeting last week, the MU Faculty Council approved forming a task force to recommend a clearer policy on e-mail privacy. The campus now follows broad system-wide regulations.

Methodist church’s crosses approved

A West Broadway church can go ahead with plans to erect three large steel crosses, including one as tall as a three-story building, after a decision by the city Tuesday night.

The Columbia Board of Adjustment voted 4-1 to let Community United Methodist Church put

Summer service

The MU Office of Service Learning reports that in the 2004-05 school year, 2,429 students completed 65,000 hours of community service. Now that a majority of students have left Columbia, there is a void in volunteer help.

Angie Azzanni, program coordinator for Granny’s House, a faith-based outreach program for the Douglass Park housing projects, said it loses about 20 of its 25 volunteers in the summer.

Court heals mental health

Judy Porter is not unfamiliar with the Boone County Courthouse. She has been to the courthouse to support her grandson, Brandon Stone, who has been charged with several misdemeanors during the past few years.

However, Porter couldn’t wait to get back to the courthouse on Tuesday. She sat anxiously in the third row of Courtroom 2-West waiting for the judge to call her grandson’s name.

Enrollment to rise at Rock Bridge

About 200 more students are expected to attend Rock Bridge High School this fall than in previous years, said Assistant Principal Kathy Ritter.

Ritter said the increase stems from redrawn boundary lines.

Iowa fire chief’s seminar to focus on safety

In more than 30 years of emergency fire calls, Mark Wessel had never experienced the loss of a fellow firefighter. That changed Dec. 22, 1999, when the Keokuk, Iowa, Fire Department responded to a duplex blaze that trapped a woman and her four children.

Three of Wessel’s firefighters and three of the children died in the fire that day.

Fees on disabled parking tags get new court review

JEFFERSON CITY — The U.S. Supreme Court ordered a federal appeals court Monday to reconsider whether Missouri can charge people with disabilities $2 annually for tags that allow them to park in reserved spaces.

The issue is whether the fee violates a federal law barring discrimination against the disabled by imposing a financial burden on the disabled seeking to park.

$100,000 donation will aid South Africans studying law at MU

An Arkansas man gave $100,000 to MU’s Law School to enable South African students and faculty to participate in its dispute resolution program.

The money from Geoffrey Oelsner Jr. of Fayetteville will provide grants to students and staff from the University of Western Cape in Cape Town.

Board adopts school budget for next year

On Monday night, the Columbia School Board viewed some of the results of last year’s decisions and then voted to adopt next year’s budget.

Last year, West Boulevard Elementary School was chosen as a site for the model school program because of the high poverty rate, behavior problems and low achievement at the school. At the meeting, West Boulevard Principal Vickie Robb presented the results of the first year of the program, which used research-based strategies to boost student achievement.

Jackson cleared on all counts

SANTA MARIA, Calif. — Michael Jackson left the courthouse Monday just as he entered it, a free but somber man waving to fans and blowing a kiss, after a jury rejected charges that he repeatedly molested a 13-year-old boy, gave him alcohol and held him and his family captive at Neverland ranch.

The jury of eight women and four men concluded that the evidence was not sufficient beyond any reasonable doubt that Jackson was a predatory child molester who groomed the boy with liquor and porn and then groped him. The jurors found him not guilty on all 10 counts.

Music and man prove hard for fans to keep separate

Whether as a happy-go-lucky child of Motown or a one-gloved thriller, Michael Jackson has successfully moonwalked through a trendsetting musical evolution.

His personal life, however, has been a long, strange story that has both entertained and confounded the public. His acquittal on molestation and other charges Monday is the latest chapter in a history of plastic surgeries, unconventional marriages and troubling public acts.

School days brighter

Eight-year-old Courtney Callahan wants to have perfect attendance this year at Newton Summer Adventure, Columbia’s main summer school, so she can help those in need. While other students are excited to use potential incentives on toys and school supplies for next year, Courtney plans to use her $100 to buy food for the Central Missouri Food Bank.

“I’ll probably give my money to feed the children,” she said. “I’m really worried about them not having food.”

Commissioner gets free ride to Hawaii conference

While the Boone County Commission has budgeted more than $7,000 to send county employees to a conference in Hawaii next month, they won’t spend a dime of it.

Only Southern District Commissioner Karen Miller will attend the annual conference of the National Association of Counties in Honolulu. Because Miller is a past president of NACo, the association covers all her expenses.

Treading Forward

MU senior Brian Robichaux gives a swimming lesson to 6-year-old Jessica Clark at the Hickman High School pool Monday. Fifteen trainees finished the city’s certification program over the weekend, cutting the city’s shortage in half. Applicants must be at least 15 years old and prove they are capable of swimming 200 meters, treading water for two minutes and retrieving a 10-pound weight from the pool before they are certified as lifeguards.