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Friend recounts victim’s last moments before Houston explosion

first_imgiStock(HOUSTON) — A deadly explosion that left two people dead and sent shock waves throughout the city was felt by one of the victim’s friends, just after they spoke on the phone.Bobbie, a friend of one of the victims, told ABC Houston station KTRK-TV that the two were on the phone when the victim arrived at the Watson Grinding and Manufacturing just before 4:30 a.m. Friday, when the blast occurred.“He goes, ‘Hey, something is not right.’ I’m like why? And he’s like, ‘I’m here in the parking lot at my job and I just smell something really, really funny’. He goes, ‘It smells like gas,’” Bobbie told the station.She said he then told her another co-worker arrived and the two were going to check out the issue.“He said, ‘I can hear a very loud hissing sound,’” Bobbie said.Not long after, she said she felt the explosion from her home about five miles away.Bobbie said she hasn’t been able to reach her friend since. She did not name which of the victims was her friend.Authorities identified the two victims who were killed as Gerardo Castorena and Frank Flores, both employees at Watson Grinding and Manufacturing.The manufacturing company issued a statement expressing its condolences to the families of the victims, but did not name the two employees who were killed.“Our hearts go out to the families and businesses impacted by this incident and to our community,” the statement read. “At this time, our immediate concern is the safety and well-being of everyone in the area and our employees.”The company was “working diligently” with federal, state and local authorities to investigate the accident, according to the statement.It was not yet clear exactly what caused the explosion, but Houston Fire Chief Samuel Pena noted there was a leak coming from a 2,000-gallon tank of propylene.Multiple homes and a nearby strip mall also sustained “significant damage” in the blast, which happened around 4:30 a.m. local time on Friday, Pena said at a press conference.Houston Police Chief Art Acevedo said a multi-agency arson investigation has been launched. He made a point to note that there is no reason to believe it was terror-related or an intentional act.It is protocol to conduct an investigation and it will look into whether all regulations had been properly followed prior to the explosion, according to Acevedo.A temporary shelter was set up at 4703 Shadowdale Drive and at least 48 people were sheltering there, according to KTRK-TV.Acevedo asked for the public to consider offering help and donating to the families who had been affected.“This is an area where it isn’t the most affluent, so my thoughts are with all the individuals, whether they rent or own, that will be potentially displaced,” Acevedo said.Copyright © 2020, ABC Audio. All rights reserved.last_img read more

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N.O.W. Counseling Dedicates New Facility To The Honorable Judge Trockman

first_imgN.O.W. Counseling Dedicates New Facility To The Honorable Judge TrockmanJANUARY 18TH, 2019 KATELYN PERRETT EVANSVILLE, INDIANAA new counseling center is open in downtown Evansville to help those struggling with addiction and mental illnesses.N.O.W. Counseling services has dedicated its new outpatient clinic location to Judge Wayne Trockman. They say it was dedicated to Judge Trockman for his work improving the way addiction is treated in the criminal justice system.N.O.W. Counseling includes individual and group therapy, relapse prevention groups, case management services, and meditation opportunities.Clinical Director Leslie Hagedorn says, “Create an environment of acceptance where everyone that comes through the door feels welcome, they feel respected,  they feel important and where all of those principles of recovery are really dedicated by the staff. It’s not just a building, it’s a culture that we are trying to develop.”The next project is opening a low-intensity residential program for men and women, and a specialized outpatient program for parents in recovery.FacebookTwitterCopy LinkEmailSharelast_img read more

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City of South Bend, South Bend Cubs extend stadium agreement deal until 2041

first_imgIndianaLocalNewsSports City of South Bend, South Bend Cubs extend stadium agreement deal until 2041 Pinterest By Jon Zimney – January 19, 2021 0 214 Twitter Google+ Pinterest Twitter WhatsApp Google+ Facebook WhatsApp (Photo supplied/City of South Bend) The South Bend Park Board has approved a long-term extension to the existing stadium operations and management agreement with the South Bend Cubs.Professional baseball contributes roughly $25 million a year in direct and induced economic impact to the region, according to Aaron Perri, Director of South Bend Venues, Parks and Arts.Given that, the agreement between the City and the South Bend Cubs now goes until the year 2041.The deal comes as South Bend has been invited to move up to High-A status – bringing more talented players and a higher caliber of play on the field. Facebook Previous articleNCAA announces details regarding March Madness games in IndianaNext articleElkhart man sentenced for machine gun charge Jon ZimneyJon Zimney is the News and Programming Director for News/Talk 95.3 Michiana’s News Channel and host of the Fries With That podcast. Follow him on Twitter @jzimney.last_img read more

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Six alumni receive HAA Award for outstanding service

first_imgThe Harvard Alumni Association (HAA) has announced the recipients of the 2020 HAA Awards: J. Jacques Carter, M.P.H. ’83, Martin J. “Marty” Grasso Jr. ’78, Cecily Orenstein Morse ’62, Yoshiko J. “June” Nagao ’96, Julie Gage Palmer ’84, and Kenneth A. Powell, M.B.A. ’74.Established in 1990, the HAA Awards are presented annually to recognize alumni for their outstanding service to Harvard University through leadership and engagement activities.last_img

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South Africa to compensate Marikana massacre families

first_imgSouth Africa’s government will pay compensation to the families of the mineworkers killed by police in a wage dispute in Marikana in 2012.President Jacob Zuma said the families will be compensated, but details of the payments will be determined by an independent panel led by a judge.Police shot 34 miners at the Lonmin platinum mine, claiming they were acting in self-defence.The shooting shocked South Africa and the world at large, and was the most deadly police incident since the end of apartheid.The lawyers representing the families have reportedly welcomed the president’s announcement, saying the gesture was expected a long time ago by the families, most of whom had even lost hope.Many of the mine workers who died were sole bread winners for their families, and the compensation will be a welcome relief for the families.Opposition leaders in the country have argued that the matter should be brought to parliament so that they can weigh in on what a fair settlement would be.last_img read more

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EHS boys’ basketball team enters season among Class B North favorites

first_img Mike MandellMike Mandell is the sports editor at The Ellsworth American and Mount Desert Islander. He began working for The American in August 2016. You can reach him via email at [email protected] Bio Hospice volunteers help families navigate grief and find hope – September 12, 2020 MPA approves golf, XC, field hockey, soccer; football, volleyball moved to spring – September 10, 2020 Latest posts by Mike Mandell (see all)center_img Ellsworth runners compete in virtual Boston Marathon – September 16, 2020 Latest Posts BAR HARBOR — A prolific offensive performance Saturday afternoon left one basketball fan in Mount Desert Island High School’s Bunny Parady Gymnasium in utter amazement.Using speed in the transition game, pinpoint passing and red-hot shooting to make basket after basket, the Ellsworth boys’ team was an unstoppable force in its second game of Saturday’s round-robin preseason tournament in Bar Harbor. When the buzzer sounded to mark the end of the first half, the aforementioned fan looked up at the scoreboard and shook his head in disbelief.“Sixty?” the bewildered fan asked himself rhetorically as the two teams left the court and filed into their respective locker rooms. “They scored 60 in one half? How do you even score 60 in one half?”In reality, the Eagles had scored 59 points in the first half of Saturday’s game against Sumner. Yet the exact number was merely a matter of semantics in this contest, a game in which Ellsworth showcased its status as one of the teams to beat in this year’s Class B field.Ellsworth’s J’Von James goes up for a shot during the first half of a boys’ basketball preseason game against Sumner on Nov. 30 in Bar Harbor. James, a transfer from Springfield, Mass., will provide athleticism and depth for this year’s Ellsworth team. BARRY GUTRADT PHOTOThis is placeholder textThis is placeholder text“We just couldn’t miss,” senior Connor Crawford said. “We have a lot of shooters and experience, and when we’re hot like that sometimes, it’s a lot of fun.”Ellsworth averaged 59.4 points per game a season ago, surpassing the 60-point mark 12 times and the 70-point mark four times. The Eagles’ best stretch of play came at the end of the year as they scored a combined 139 points in tourney wins over Winslow and Mount Desert Island to reach the regional semifinals.This year, Ellsworth returns the vast majority of a squad that went 14-7 last season. Even without Devin Grindle and Norman Jodrey, who had strong years defensively as seniors a year ago, with the players they do return, the Eagles have the pieces to be remarkably dangerous.“We’ve got a lot of kids back, and that’s a huge boost,” Crawford said. “We’re still trying to figure out our full rotation, but when you look around at our team, it’s hard not to be excited.”Jackson Curtis, who averaged 18.8 points and 7.3 rebounds in the regular season last year and was an All-Big East Conference first-teamer, is back for his senior season. Curtis put his offensive arsenal on full display Saturday with a stretch of four straight 3-pointers against Sumner after coming through in the paint late to spur Ellsworth to a 43-39 win against Fryeburg Academy in the Eagles’ tournament opener.This Eagles also return Darby Barry and Hunter Curtis, last year’s No. 2 and No. 3 scorers with 10.2 and 9.8 points per game, respectively. Barry propelled Ellsworth to the Cross Insurance Center last year with a 24-point effort in the Eagles’ preliminary round win over Winslow, and Hunter Curtis, Jackson’s younger brother, led the team in rebounds (8.1), assists (3.3) and steals (1.1) per game.Ellsworth’s other starting spots will go to Crawford and Austin Harris, two of the Eagles’ leading bench contributors a year ago. The Eagles’ bench this year will include returning forwards Brett Bragdon and Deyan Rich as well as J’Von James, a transfer for whom head coach Peter Austin has high hopes in 2019-20.(From left) Ellsworth’s Hunter Curtis, Austin Harris, Darby Barry, Jackson Curtis and Connor Crawford relax on the bench during the second half of boys’ basketball preseason game against Sumner on Nov. 30 in Bar Harbor. The Eagles scored 59 first-half points in an 86-37 win over the Tigers. ELLSWORTH AMERICAN PHOTO BY MIKE MANDELL“[J’Von] is very athletic,” Austin said. “He’s still trying to get to know my system, but eventually, I think he’ll be playing some pretty big minutes for us.”Ellsworth’s top challengers will include defending state champion Caribou, Northern Maine runner-up Hermon and Cross Center staple MDI. This year’s Class B North field also includes Houlton, which boasts one of the state’s top guards in Keegan Gentle and is moving up a class after claiming the Class C North crown last season.The best of that bunch could be Caribou, which ended Ellsworth’s season last year with a come-from-behind win in the regional semifinals. The Vikings bring back reigning Big East scoring leader Parker Deprey (19.4 points per game) as well as All-Big East honorable mention recipients Alex Bouchard and Isaac Marker. They will also add several players from a junior varsity team that went undefeated.“They’re going to be really good again,” Barry said of Caribou, which beat Ellsworth twice in the regular season prior to the two teams’ meeting in the Class B North semifinals. “We know there’s a good chance that it’s going be us and them again [in the playoffs].”This year, Ellsworth’s schedule includes its annual home-and-home series with Caribou and Presque Isle as well as home and away games against Hermon, MDI and Maine Central Institute. The 2019-20 season marks the first time in five years the Eagles will not face George Stevens Academy.Ellsworth’s first regular season game will be at home at 7 p.m. Wednesday, Dec. 11. That contest will pit the Eagles against a Washington Academy team that can be remarkably difficult to scout early in the season with its annual influx of transfers.“WA and MCI can be tough because you never know what players they’re going to bring in,” Austin said. “We can be good, but in this league, you can beat anybody and get beat by anybody. Our kids know they’re going to have to go out and earn it.”last_img read more

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