Athens News Courier (Newspaper) - July 12, 2009, Athens, Alabama
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Sunday, July 12, 2009
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Sessions in national spotlight
Alabama senator taking first turn as lead Republican at Supreme Court hearing.
No more stimulus
President Obama says program must be given chance to work before consideration is given to a second jolt for the still-ailing U.S. economy.
Penny Aden Jessica Braithwaite Brenda Dawes Andrew Turberville
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Cold case goes to court
Upcoming rape, sodomy trial stems from 19-year-old allegation
By JI AN Cod
Jiuiii ulht'tisiu'w s-i ()iiri('r.coin The upcoming trial of former Clements physical education teacher and coach Brian “Keith” McGuire on charges of rape, sodomy and sexual abuse stem from a 19-year-old allegation, records show.
McGuire, 49, of Jackson is scheduled to stand trial in l^uderdale County Circuit Court on July 20, the county where he graduated from high sch(K)l in 1978. It has been a long
journey for the Lexington native.
After graduating from Athens State University in 1994, he landed a job as physical education teacher and coach at Clement High School.
It was not long before his life began to unravel.
In early 2(X)2, a 12-year-old Clements girl told her mother McGuire had touched her breast while they were playing one-on-one basketball. A 16-year-old girl made a similar accu
sation against him.
He was never charged with a crime. But, alter a closed-d(X)r meeting. Limestone County school lx)ard members accepted McGuire’s resignation on March 7, 2002. Limestone County Sheriff Mike Blakely told The News Courier at the time that McGuire tcx)k a pt)ly-graph test that proved inconclusive. The sheriff also said McGuire admitted he might have ac-
See Trial, page 3A
A hero tells his story
NEWS COURIER/KAREN MIDDLETON
Medal of Honor Recipient Leo Thorsness proudly displays a painting in his Madison home of the F-105F "Wild Weasel" he was piloting when he was shot down over North Vietnam in 1967, beginning six years of captivity as a prisoner of war.
Alabama red, white and blue, says Medal of Honor recipient
By K.\REN MiDDLKlON kuiviitS^ iitlicnsiirw’s-courkT.coin Leo Thorsness spits out his words like the rapid firing of a Gatling gun.
It’s a story he’s told often since being released from the infamous Hanoi
Hilton in 1973, and he tells it with little preamble. He gets from his 1932 birth in Walnut Grove,
Minn., to meeting his wife, Gaylee, on his first day at South Dakota State University at Brookings, to joining the Air Force to getting shot down over North Vietnam and spending the next six years as a prisoner of war in about 90 seconds.
It’s the interviewer’s job to make him backtrack and fill in the gaps.
Thorsness, 77, of Madison-annexed Limestone County, is one of 96 Living Medal of Honor recipients. He^ speaks frequently at both formal and informal functions about his POW experience, two years of which was spent as the cellmate of Arizona Senator and former Republican presidential candidate John McCain.
His book about his six-year captivity, “Surviving Hell: A POW’s Journey,” was published in 2008 by Encounter Books of New York. McQain wrote the jacket blurb for the book: “Leo Thorsness, my friend and fellow alumnus of the Hanoi Hilton, shows why the North Vietnamese may have had our bodies but never controlled
See Medal, page 8A
2-state cJert out for RBC bank robber
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Authorities in two states continued to search Saturday for the man who robbed the RBC Bank in Capshaw Friday afternoon, a Limestone County Sheriff’s Department spokeswoman said.
Law enforcement agencies in Tennessee and Alabama have issued be-on-the-lookout alerts for the black man, who was wearing blue jeans, a blue T-shirt, ball cap and bandana.
Limestone County Sheriff’s Chief Investigator Stanley McNatt said Friday the man entered the bank about 3:20 p.m., pulled the bandana over his face, walked to a teller and demanded money. He was armed with a large, semiautomatic handgun.
I'here were three employees and no customers in the bank during the robbery. T’he suspect reportedly fled in a blue sport-utility vehicle, believed to be a Ford Expedition, heading west on Capshaw Road.
Anyone with infonnation about the robber or the robbery is asked to call the Sheriffs Department at (256) 232-0111.
West holding Legos robotics camp this week
By Jean Cole
For those of you who think of Legos as those tiny, primary colored plastic blocks that let you design square people, cars and houses, you iieed to get with the program.
Today, kids can use them to build workable robots with motors and microprocessors and they can even form teams to see who can do it best.
West Limestone High School’s Lego Robotics team will host a summer robotics camp from 9 a.m. to noon July 13-16 at the old West Limestone gymnasium.
The camp is for students who have completed third, fourth, fifth, sixth and seventh grades.
Cost of the camp is $30, which includes snacks for the day.
Students will work in teams to build and program Lego NXT robots.
“We’re going to do basic configuration and they will add attachments,” Patrick said. “They will build the robot and program them to play a game.”
Applications, which will be accepted until all slots are filled, are still available at the school ofiRce or by calling Jammie
See Robotics, page 8A
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