March 2010 Archives


Alberto Arroyo's Obituary from the New York Times.

The reporter used many different sources for this obituary. He cited past interviews with Sen. William Proxmire and Alberto Arroyo himself. He talked to both Henry Stern, the parks commissioner and Louis Torres, a friend of Arroyo's helping to execute his will.

My guess is that the reporter also looked at the three scrapbooks Arroyo kept. In it Arroyo saved clippings about himself. I assume the reporter looked at the clippings directly in his scrapbooks or searched online for information others reported about Arroyo.

There was also a documentary made about Arroyo that I am sure the reporter saw.

The lead has all of the parts of a typical obituary lead has, but the reporter arranges the parts in a different way. I think the way the lead is written hints at Arroyo's personality and therefore works. I get the impression he was a bit of a storyteller, but that people were more than happy to listen to stories of the interesting life he led.

While Arroyo's obituary lists his achievements, the story moves beyond that of a resume by showing the impact he had on the people around him. You can almost feel Arroyo's personality oozing through the writing.

Whether this was by conscious choice or due to a lack of information, the story is not bogged down in information about Arroyo's academic or professional life. Instead we see him through the eyes of those who were lucky enough to have encountered him.

Circulation of racist, homophobic, and pornographic e-mails Thursday has prompted an investigation of as many as 100 Australian police officers and led to the death of another, the Times said.

The e-mails, which circulated in the internal police e-mail system in the state of Victoria, were too shocking to be released, Simon Overland, police commissioner of Victoria, said. Those who introduced the material will be fired, NDTV reported.

Tony Vangorp, 47, shot himself Monday night at the police station. Vangorp, an officer for 30 years, faced potential job loss as a result of the e-mails, NDTV reported.

"There are a large number of police involved. I guess there are different degrees of seriousness, but it was quite widespread," Overland said. "If the public were aware of the nature of that material I believe that it would cause significant concern within the community," the Times reported.

The center of the investigation focused on one e-mail in which a non-Caucasian man was being tortured. Overland said the e-mails raised questions about the suitability of some individuals to continue with the Victoria police.

News of the offensive e-mails comes shortly after Indian and African groups criticized the police for being racist, the Times said.

"There is a culture of racism within the Victorian police force," Helen Yandell, director of the Springvale Monash Legal service told the Times. "It is an issue that needs to be addressed. I'm pleased that the police are taking such quick action on these e-mails."

While Overland acknowledged the death of Vangorp was unfortunate, he defended his handling of the situation.

"How can a community have confidence in this organisation if we allow racist, sexist, pornographic, inappropriate material to circulate freely?" Overland said to the Times. "We can't do it."

60 Minutes To Maintain Weight

According to a study, as women age they will need 60 minutes of moderate exercise a day to maintain their weight, Kare 11 reported.

The study, published in the Journal of the American Medical Association, suggests that women need more exercise than the current federal guidelines of 30 minutes a day, the Wall Street Journal said.

"I don't want people to throw up their hands and say 'I can't do it,' " I. Min Lee said, the lead researcher and a doctor and associate professor at Harvard Medical School and Brigham and Women's Hospital in Boston.

Researchers tracked the activity and weight of 34,079 healthy U.S. women for 13 years. The women, who participated in the study from 1992 to 2007, were all over the age of 45 and had a normal diet, the Wall Street Journal said.

If 60 minutes sounds time consuming, consider breaking exercise up throughout the day, into increments of 10 minutes or longer. Women can also replace 60 minutes of moderate exercise with 30 minutes of vigorous exercise and achieve the same results, Kare 11 said.

Women can work moderate exercise into their life by walking, leisurely riding bike, or by playing catch, the Wall Street Journal said.

Autistic Teen On Track For A Perfect Bracket

4.78 million people failed to pick the perfect NCAA tournament bracket, but an Autistic teen from the Chicago suburbs says he correctly picked all 48 games of the first two rounds, the New York Post reported.

Alex Hermann, 17, entered his picks in's Bracket Manager, with the help of his brother, Andrew Hermann, 24.

"I watched each team this year and saw the size of the player and looked at the stats," Hermann said, describing how he made his picks adding, "I'm good at math," NBC Chicago and the New York Post reported. does not monitor the Bracket Manager because picks can be changed after the tournament has started. Because of this, they will not confirm Alex Hermann's claims.

The Hermann's said they filled the brackets out together as a family before the games began. When asked if they have changed their picks, Alex's mother said, "No," NBC Chicago reported.

The odds of doing what Alex Hermann claims to have done are 1 in 13,460,000. The leader at ESPN's bracket already has four wrong picks.

The odds of picking all four rounds correctly? 1 in 1,000,000,000,000. Alex Hermann has slated Purdue, his favorite team and brother's alma mater, to win it all.

*My link for the New York Post isn't working for some reason. I searched for the story again on their database and it comes up, but their link to it also has an error now. I have no idea why. I linked to my search of their database.

Prince Owes Carver County A Hefty Sum

Renowned musician Prince owes Carver County more than $500,000 in delinquent taxes from 2009, the Pioneer Press reported.

The list of delinquent taxpayers and their property information, published last week by the Chaska Herald, included Prince's $221,891 delinquent tax on Paisley Park Studios in Chanhassen. It is the largest late-tax amount for a single property in the state, the Pioneer Press and Star Tribune reported.

Prince also has seven properties listed under Prince R. Nelson for $260,485 and four Carver County properties listed under Paisley Park Enterprises for $24,085, the Star Tribune said.

The county sent Prince a letter on Feb. 15 notifying him of his late payments, taxpayer services manager Laurie Engelen told the Star Tribune. To her knowledge, Prince did not respond.

If Prince does not handle the payments by May, the county will file the delinquency with the court, the Star Tribune said.

Prince was also late for payments in 2006 and 2008. He paid them before the county published a delinquent tax report, the Pioneer Press reported.

Man Falls To Death In Mall Of America

A 22-year-old man died after falling four stories inside the Mall of America Wednesday night, the Star Tribune reported.

The man fell to the rotunda floor from the fourth story, near Cantina No. 1 restaurant, the Star Tribune said.

Bloomington Police said that officers responded to a call about a man with a knife. As officers approached, the man climbed over the edge of the railing and fell, KSAX reported.

"It sounded like a bomb went off," Janet Duncan, 36, said who was getting her nails done three floors above the rotunda floor, the Star Tribune reported.

Officers administered CPR to the man. He was still breathing and had a faint pulse when he was taken by ambulance to Hennepin County Medical Center. He died later.

This incident marks the third death this month at the Mall of America. One man jumped off a parking ramp to his death while trying to elude police and another man, found dead, was believed to have fallen off the edge of a parking ramp, the Star Tribune said.

An update from Kare 11.

Fifth Grade Class Fight For Veteran's Purple Heart

A local Maplewood class, moved by a World War II veteran's experiences, took action in hopes he would finally receive his Purple Heart, Kare 11 said.

Sara Paul's fifth grade class, from Weaver Elementary school, wanted to help decorated veteran Russell Anderson, 93, receive his Purple Heart.

Anderson, of Oakdale, was injured by enemy shrapnel on D-Day in 1944 and spent nine months in the hospital, Kare 11 reported.

The students met Anderson in November when he spoke to the class on Veteran's Day. Both his stories and his sadness at not receiving a Purple Heart stuck with the class, the Pioneer Press said.

The students, with the approval of their teacher, Paul, researched for two months, learning about topics such as why the Purple Heart is awarded. Then they sent officials essays they wrote about Anderson's story, the Pioneer Press reported.

"I think he deserves one," fifth-grader Robert Noel Anigbogu said. "I hope that he gets his Purple Heart, and he's happy. If he does, he won't be so sad," the Pioneer Press reported.

Currently the students' efforts are supported by U.S. Sens. Al Franken and Amy Klobuchar, U.S. Rep. Betty McCollum, Minnesota state Sen. Chuck Wiger, and the Maplewood and Oakdale city councils, the Pioneer Press reported.

The request for Anderson's Purple Heart was sent to the Army.

Anderson's family has tried for years to get him a Purple Heart, but their efforts have been hampered by a lack of paperwork confirming the nine months Anderson spent in the hospital, the Pioneer Press said.

"To the family, this is awesome," Ken Vick, Anderson's nephew said. "That the younger generation realizes what the generation before went through to keep this country a great country is a very great thing," Kare 11 reported.

The Purple Heart is awarded to those wounded while fighting in a battle for the United States. Documentation of treatment from a medical officer is required for the award, students told the Pioneer Press.

Local Restaurant Entrepreneur Leeann Chin Died

Leeann Chinn, the founder of the popular chain restaurants bearing her name, died Wednesday at age of 77 after a long battle with cancer, the Pioneer Press said.

Leeann Chin, born in Guangzhou, China in 1933, grew up working at her father's grocery store stocking shelves, sweeping, and delivering goods by bicycle, sometimes traveling 90 miles in a day, Kare 11 said.

After marrying, Leeann Chin moved to Minnesota in 1957. Despite not speaking English, she worked out of her home in Minneapolis as a seamstress, Kare 11 reported.

She would often cook for her customers as a way to say thank you for their business. Leeann Chin became known for her lemon chicken, the Pioneer Press said.

"That wasn't what we ate at home," her daughter, Laura Chin, joked. "We mostly ate stir-fry," the Pioneer Press reported.

At the request of one of her customers, she began teaching others how to cook and also began cooking for more of her clients.

In 1980, Leeann Chin, 47, started her first restaurant in the Minnetonka Bonaventure shopping mall, the Pioneer Press said.

Initially Leeann Chin was concerned with whether or not her business would succeed, but students and former clients packed the restaurant. Celebrity Sean Connery also visited her restaurant and became an investor early on, the Pioneer Press reported.

In 1981, General Mills purchased a list of her recipes which were published in a Betty Crocker cookbook. General Mills later bought Leeann Chin's business in hopes of expanding the chain beyond the Twin Cities, the Pioneer Press said.

After General Mills unsuccessful attempt to expand her business, Leeann Chin bought her business back. She retired in 2002 and moved to Seattle.

Leeann Chin, Inc. released a statement Friday which said, "Leeann was an endearing woman who touched the lives of her employees and guests with her charm and hospitality and she will be sadly missed," the Pioneer Press said.

Leeann Chin is survived by five children and 11 grandchildren.

A service is planned for the Twin Cities at 1 p.m. March 27 at Normandale Lutheran Church in Edina.

Sex Offender Working As A Letter Carrier Was Reassigned

A registered sex offender working as a letter carrier was reassigned because of concerns that he was delivering mail in a San Diego suburb with many children, the Seattle Times said.

The Postal Service took Dana Kennette, 53, off his mail route in the Rancho Bernardo area and reassigned him to a job that does not deal with the public, the Seattle Times reported.

Kennette was convicted of lewd or lascivious acts on a child under 14 years of age in September 97. He has worked for the Postal Service since August 1983, the North County Times reported.

A letter to the Postal Service from Rep. Darrell Issa preceded Kennette's reassignment. In the letter Issa questioned the service's determination that Kennette was not a threat to the community, the North County Times said.

Kurt Bardella, Issa's spokesman, said that the reassignment did not change Issa's request for more information and validated the representative's concerns, the North County Times said.

Tensions remain high in the Rancho Bernardo area after another sex offender was charged with the murder of 17-year-old Chelsea King this month and after the remains of Amber Dubois, 14, were found last weekend. Dubois's death is under investigation, the Seattle Times said.

Three-Year-Old Mistook Gun for Wii Controller

A 3-year-old shot and killed herself after mistaking her stepfather's gun for a Wii video game controller, Fox said.

Cheyenne Alexis McKeehan of Norene Tenn., shot herself in the abdomen Sunday after finding the loaded gun sitting out on a table, ABC said.

Tina Cronberger told police that her daughter was used to playing a shooting game with the Nintendo Wii game controller and probably confused the real gun with the realistic black gun controller, Fox reported.

"It looks so real," Wilson County Det. Jeff Johnson said. "You can look at my glock, there are real similarities," Fox reported.

Cheyenne's stepfather, Douglas Cronberger, 32, took out his gun to check on a possible prowler outside their home and left it on the living room table when he came back inside, Fox said.

Cheyenne shot herself just feet from her mother, ABC said.

Michael Fahey, a reporter for the video game blog Kotaku, that children's toy guns are often brightly-colored or white so they aren't mistaken for real guns. Controllers similar to the Cronberger's are very unusual he added, ABC said.

"We're not looking at criminal intent," Wilson County Sheriff Terry Ashe said. "There was a terrible lapse of judgment here," ABC reported.

Fashion TV Banned In India

Indian officials banned Fashion TV for 10 days after discovering the station aired a show with partially nude women, the BBC reported.

The program, which aired in September 2009 and showed women with nude upper bodies, offended good taste and decency, officials said.

"The visuals were found to be obscene, denigrating women and were not suitable for children and unrestricted public exhibition," the Information and Broadcasting Ministry said in a statement, the BBC reported.

According to the statement, the ban started Thursday and will last until March 21.

Officials previously banned FTV for two months in 2007 after scantily clad models were shown on the "Midnight Hot" show, MSN reported. The suspension was revoked less than a month later after FTV issued an apology and promised not to show similar material again, MSN said.

Swiss To Vote On Animal Lawyers

Swiss voters voted against the proposal to appoint animals state-funded lawyers in court Sunday, the BBC reported.

Swiss voters will decide Sunday if state-funded lawyers will be appointed to represent animals in cases of animal cruelty, the BBC said.

With 1,000 signatures, Swiss Animal Protection pushed the issue to a national vote, the Star Tribune reported.

The Swiss government recommends voters reject the proposal because strict animal protection laws are already in place, the Star Tribune reported.

Supporters argue that animal lawyers would help deter violators of animal cruelty laws by ensuring they receive punishment, the BBC said.

"At the moment even if there are court cases the fines are tiny, laughably small," Marlies Widmer, a woman who runs a home for neglected animals said. "They don't deter people at all."

However Swiss farmers are worried that animal lawyers will cause unnecessary and costly court cases, the BBC reported.

"You know as a farmer I have always thought of an animal's welfare and dignity as an integral part of my job," Hans Staub, a dairy farmer said. "But animal lawyers, no, farmers won't vote for that," the BBC reported.

High School Student Received Detention For Bracelet

A New York high school student received detention from his science teacher after wearing a breast cancer awareness bracelet, Kare 11 said.

Nicholas Morgan's science teacher found his bracelet, which read "I love boobies," to be offensive and sent him to detention after he refused to take it off last Friday, WNYT said.

Nick's mom, Barbara Gifford, bought the bracelet as a birthday gift for Nick after he asked for it. He said the bracelet supported education and awareness about breast cancer.

Nick didn't want to take the bracelet off because he said he had a great aunt who died from breast cancer and an aunt fighting breast cancer. He did offer to turn the bracelet inside out, WNYT reported.

His teacher found the bracelet offensive because she lost a relative to breast cancer, WNYT said.

Superintendent Dr. James McCarthy said he hoped the issue could be resolved "where we're not encroaching on his rights and we're not impacting teaching or learning," WNYT reported.

A resolution came on Thursday when the school transferred Nick to another science class taught by a different teacher.

Nick's bracelet came from the non-profit group, Keep a Breast Foundation, which aims to raise breast cancer awareness among teenagers, Kare 11 said.

Woman Loses Two Fingers At The Zoo

A bear bit off a woman's fingers after she ignored warning signs and barriers in attempt to feed the animal at a Manitowoc zoo on Friday, the Huffington Post said.

The bear bit off 47-year-old Tracy Weiler's thumb and forefinger and partially severed her middle and ring fingers around 11:30 a.m., the Lacrosse Tribune reported.

The Lincoln Park Zoo closed for the day after the incident.

Weiler's boyfriend tried to pry the bear's mouth off her hand and was also bit. Weiler's 3-year-old granddaughter was not hurt, the Huffington Post said.

Alcohol played a factor in both adults Mayor Justin Nickel's office said, the Lacrosse Tribune reported.

Police said that the Asiatic black bear involved likely won't be euthanized, the Huffington Post reported.

School Bus Driver Allegedly Drove Drunk

Police arrested a school bus driver after he allegedly drove drunk with a special-needs student on board in Anoka on Wednesday morning, the Star Tribune reported.

Neil Carlson, 51, is being charged with driving a school bus while impaired and third-degree driving while impaired, the Pioneer Press said.

Carlson agreed to take a portable breath test and his blood alcohol level was 0.10. He was arrested on the spot, the Star Tribune reported.

A 13-year-old special-needs student in a wheel chair who cannot speak and an adult paraprofessional were on board, the Pioneer Press said.

Carlson was fired and a substitute finished his route on Wednesday, the Star Tribune said.

Minneapolis Parking Ban Lifted Early

Warm, dry weather led officials to lift the Minneapolis parking ban early, Kare 11 reported.

The 22-day ban, which prevented drivers from parking on the even side of the street, started on Feb. 11 and was supposed to last until April 1, KSTP said.

"It was just bad, just bad," David Hall, and Uptown resident said of the parking ban, Kare 11 reported.

Over the course of the ban officers wrote more than 6,600 tickets and towed 687 vehicles, KSTP reported.

The restrictions were put in place to assure that emergency vehicles could access homes along roads with snow buildup, KSTP said.


On Wednesday Obama gave a speech in the East Room of the White House. The following transcript and news story covers his speech about health care reform.

The first paragraph of the New York Times' article focused on his call for an "up or down vote" on health care reform and the timetable in which he hopes to pass the bill.

The second paragraph introduced a quote from Obama which added voice to the story. You also learn where and when the speech occurred.

In the third paragraph you learn the context and larger situation in which the speech occurred.

Throughout the rest of the article small points were made in reference to Obama's speech, but they were typically followed by reactions from other political officials.

This article seemed to focus more on reactions about the potential success or failure of the bill.

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