State program brings owners and lost goods back together

Dan Stookey, an owner of Cooper Travel Service Inc., has just received a nice surprise — $79 he didn’t even know about.

Stookey is one of more than 1.5 million Missourians who own property or are owed money but don’t realize it.

MU researcher studies alcohol, liver

Alcoholic liver disease affects nearly 2 million people each year and is the third-leading preventable cause of death in the United States. Right now, there is no cure, but an MU researcher was recently awarded a $1 million grant to begin searching for one.

Shivendra Shukla has put together a team from the MU School of Medicine to study the effects of alcohol on liver cells. Although Shukla’s goal is to eventually produce a drug that will prevent and treat liver damage from alcohol, the researcher’s first priority is identifying how alcohol damages the liver.

Fetch, Fido

Pictures of Leo, Carly, Kilts, Socks, Spook and others were lined up on a table for members of First Presbyterian Church to admire Sunday.

This public display of animal affection was all part of “The Pet Event,” one of five New Horizons Dinners where church members 50 and older eat, meet and mingle.

Protesters decry lack of diversity support

Senior Amber Flournoy was one of 100 MU students, faculty, and Columbia citizens gathered in front of Jesse Hall at 6 a.m. this morning to protest the lack of support for diversity on campus.

An article written by student Jenny Marinko in the most recent edition of MU Student News was cited as the "straw that broke the camels back," said many students.

Country jams

Betty White didn’t know what she was getting into 30 years ago, marrying a fiddler.

A few weeks after they were married, she went to the bathroom to find her husband locked inside, refusing to come out. She grew alarmed.

Selling off realty can be a fiasco

My husband and I decided that it is time to sell our lake house. With three levels and five bedrooms it was the perfect place for our children and their children to visit. But now that most of the grandkids are in school, they’re far too busy to spend time at the lake away from their friends and activities.

Putting a house on the market is a pain in the neck. First we had to fill out a six-page disclosure that I didn’t have a clue as how to answer some of the questions.

Philips plan assessed before final vote

The Columbia City Council will have its final vote Monday on Elvin Sapp’s proposal to develop the 489-acre Philips farm just southeast of the city limits. Sapp wants to annex and zone the land to allow for more than 750 homes and a mix of office buildings and shops, which, if built according to current plans, would be one of the largest developments in Boone County history.

Sapp’s spokespeople have repeatedly said he will pull the project if the council doesn’t approve it Monday.

Limbo Queen

About halfway through any given skating session at Empire Roller Rink, the first eight beats of the Limbo Rock snap the attention of dozens of children and even some adults. They stop what they’re doing and rush to the skate floor to claim their spots in line.

Once in line, the competition becomes intense as participants try their best to get as low as they can on skates to maneuver under the bar. This limbo differs from the on-foot style in that contestants don’t have to bend backwards. Instead, they bend forward over their legs, sometimes in positions similar to doing the splits, to get under the bar. The goal is still to be the lowest and to become that session’s limbo champ.

Graham resigns from committee

JEFFERSON CITY — Columbia lost a vote on Missouri’s House Budget Committee when Rep. Chuck Graham, D-Columbia, resigned from the committee Wednesday.

Graham’s resignation from the committee, which determines the House’s budget proposals, came just before the committee votes on its budget for next year.

Hopefuls’ opinions debated in forum

Incumbent Mayor Darwin Hindman and challengers John G. Clark and Arch Brooks sounded off against each other Friday at the Boone County Muleskinners meeting. Issues that will play a large role in the upcoming election, based on the Democratic club’s forum at Stephens College, are police-community relations, city growth, the Philips tract and unemployment. Each candidate had a chance to critique or praise city government and to share their opinions on each issue and ideas for future change.

Asked what the “biggest challenge” facing city government is now, each candidate had a different response.

Healing through prayer

Every Sunday morning, in the sun-filled foyer of the First Church of Christ, Scientist, Columbia, visitors and church members are warmly welcomed by both a smiling usher and an inspirational message from the religion’s founder, Mary Baker Eddy, in bold block letters on the front wall: “Divine Love always has met and always will meet every human need.”

The congregation is small — about 30 to 50 people attend services at the church’s chocolate-colored building on Broadway — which might make it easier for members to develop loving and familial relationships with each other, churchgoers said.

What’s next in the delegate process

As in other states, the results of Missouri’s Feb. 4 primary election are represented to the national Democratic Party by delegates, those who officially anoint the party’s presidential nominee at the Democratic National Convention in July. Missouri will send 88 delegates and 13 alternates to the convention, most of whom are bound to represent the state’s popular vote. The process is a lot like tryouts for a baseball team:

Feb. 26

Mayoral candidates’ fund-raising varies

Darwin Hindman isn’t taking the upcoming mayoral election lightly. He’s just spending lightly.

Hindman, who is opposed in the race by John G. Clark and Arch Brooks, raised only $800 through Feb. 21, according to a campaign finance report on file at the Boone County Clerk’s Office. Nearly half that amount came from a single contributor.

Carbon monoxide deaths ‘accidental’

The deaths of the two Columbia women and a 10-year-old girl were classified as accidental Friday after police said they found no sign of foul play.

The Columbia Police Department issued a press release stating that Pelagia “Peggy” Cuellar’s car had been running inside her closed garage for “quite some time,” causing carbon monoxide to accumulate within the house and the garage, which was located under the residence.

Film fest returns to its roots

The Rural Route Film Festival, born in New York City, is the brainchild of former Columbia resident Mike Schmidt and his friend Alan Webber.

But the festival’s subject matter takes viewers a long way from the Big Apple: cattle auctions and oil wells, prescription drug abuse in Kentucky, Texas camel treks and a farmhouse in rural West Virginia that doubles as a “pay-as-you-go” dental clinic.

Hunter gathering

With the deer hunting season officially over, hunters gathered at the 16th Annual Missouri Deer Classic to extend the season by comparing trophies and techniques.

Continuing today, it features seminars and more than 200 exhibits, including trophy and taxidermy displays, hunting equipment and apparel, a kid’s archery range and a pellet rifle range.

Center promotes religious diversity awareness

For a Muslim woman, a routine visit to a doctor or a stay at a hospital can become an unpleasant ordeal if the physician treating her is unfamiliar with the customs of Islam.

A request for a nurse to point out the direction of Mecca could be dismissed as the effect of painkillers.

Mo. guard to serve across United States

More National Guard members are being deployed to active duty, but they’re not going to Iraq.

Three units of the Missouri National Guard, totaling about 170 soldiers, will be deployed this weekend to various locations in the United States.

New laundry agitates some residents

Last summer, Kathy Williams sat outside watching construction begin on a new laundry facility across the street, something she said would make her life easier.

Six months later, she now finders herself wiping the top of a shiny white front-load washing machine with a stainless-steel industrial dryer spinning behind her. A Columbia Housing Authority resident, she has been hired part time to keep up the building.

Three found dead in home

Two women and a 10-year-old girl were found dead in their beds in a northwest Columbia home Wednesday night, the victims of carbon monoxide poisoning.

“Evidence at the scene clearly indicated that carbon monoxide poisoning caused the deaths,” said Sgt. Steven Monticelli of the Columbia Police Department. “We have questions that we’re still getting answers to before we can make a final ruling on whether it’s a homicide or accidental.”