Athens News Courier (Newspaper) - September 23, 2005, Athens, Alabama
Ride the Rails
10K run on Rails-to-Trails Oct. 1 sponsored by Elkmont Lions Club JBFall harvest
Limestone County agriculture update in a special section, SundayThe News-Courier
Serving Athens and Limestone County: A Community of Tradition and Future
Friday, September 23, 2005
Debbie Johnson of Athens
Subscriber of the day
Loss of a friend
It’s still hard to get a smile out of Hanson Me Bay, a week after the -year-old'cowboy lost Cotton, his best friend and favorite hose
Hey, Sound Off:
The way to honor a man is not to force feed his name to a community on a street sign. The way to honor a man is to teach what he taught to those who wish to learn more.
Hine Street was named for a man who gave his property and his service to the City of Athens and that is something to honor.
I hope our City Council doesn't allow Martin Luther King Drive to be shoved down our throats.
More Sound Off Valley, 5A
Horse & Farm 8A
Carrie Orr O’Barr Thelma Allene Rose Newman Benton Terry Jr.
Daily Bible Moment
№ y brethren, have not the faith of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Lord of glory, with respect oj persons.
322 Hhv. J1 \ «Athens 256-232-1051 Obit lint 256-771-0034
Rita aims for Texas
Course for coast stirs agonizingly slow exodus
HOUSTON (AP) — Hurricane Rita closed in on the Texas Gulf Coast and the heart of the U.S. oil-refining industry with howling 145 mph winds Thursday, but a sharper-than-expected turn to the right set it on a course that could spare Houston and nearby Galveston a direct hit.
The storm’s march toward land sent hundreds of thousands of people fleeing the nation’s fourth-largest city in a frustratingly slow, bumper-to-bumper exodus.
“This is the worst planning I've ever seen," said Judie Anderson, w ho covered just 45 miles in 12 hours after setting out from her home in the 1 louston suburb of LaPorte. “They say we’ve learned a lot from Hurricane Katrina. Well, you couldn’t prove it by me"
In all. nearly 2 million people along the Texas and Louisiana coasts were urged to get out of the way of Rita, a 400-mile-wide storm that weakened I hursday from a top-
See Rita, Page 2A
Mario Williams, 15, holds sisters, DeShonna and Dazyre, as the carload of eight family members from Baytown. Texas, fill up with gas Thursday in Houston before their trek to Victoria, Texas, to escape the path of Hurricane Rita.
Ex-Athens residents preparing for storm
Bn Tamiia Lovell
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Christy Gabardi, formerly of Anderson, has good memories ot time spent in Galveston, Texas but little did she know that the place where she got married could soon become threatened by a major hurricane.
She and her husband .Aaron married in a beachside ceremony along the gulf coast on June 4 and now reside in College Station. Texas. The college town, home of Texas A&M University, is approximately two and a half hours from the coast where Hurricane Rita could soon hit.
Just a few months ago friends and family, some from north Alabama, were in Galveston to experience or take part in their ceremony.
See Residents. Page 3A
Only time will heal Mississippi coast
B\ KlLIN K\ZEK
kellvui athensnews-courier.com At the Barnhill’s Buffet in Pascagoula, Miss., people fill plates and weave in and out of tables like any after-church gathering at a small-town restaurant.
Pictures on 13-14A
Dishes clink. Conversation buzzes. Babies cry.
Never mind that people are walking on concrete because the flooded carpet recently has been ripped out. Never mind
the Barnhill’s staff is wearing T-shirts that read: “Still believe. One bad storm, unlimited determination."
Never mind that most customers arc wearing wrinkled T-shirts and tlip-flops or that the typical conversation starter is: “Do you still have a house?"
On my most recent visit to the Mississippi coast, I find people trying to return to normal lives. On this exit oft Interstate 10, the only restaurant open is Barnhill's, and it has only been open for two days.
But in most places, it is e\ ident it will take much longer for lives and businesses to resume following the destruction of
I lurricane Katrina.
I drive, along with my daughter Shannon and News-Courier photographer Alissa Clark, the entire coast of Mississippi. We start down Interstate 59 and begin the journey in Wav eland, which is about 35 miles from New Orleans, then drive through Bay St.
I ouis. (iulfport. Biloxi. ( outlier. Pascagoula, then to Mobile and back to Interstate 65.
See Mississippi, Page 3A
Shelter from the storm
News-Courier Kim R\ nders
Brad Pullum sings at a benefit concert Thursday night at the Limestone Sheriff s Arena. Proceeds from the concert will go to victims of Hurricane Katrina. “Clear Title" and Billy Droze also performed. Pony rides were available for the children.
Space center empty, simulators protected in windowless rooms
Bn \1vrci\ Di nn
AP. lerospace Writer NASA’s legendary base for astronaut training and Mission Control was empty Thursday as Hurricane Rita aimed for the Texas Gulf Coast and posed a flooding risk to Johnson Space Center.
The space center was locked dow n, w ith the power turned off, and monitoring duties for the international space station were turned over to Russian flight controllers outside Moscow. The same thing happened in 2002 when another approaching stonn threatened the space center.
The most important items and work spaces shuttle sim-ulators, moon rocks and Mission Control arc in secure, windowless rooms, in buildings designed to withstand well above 100 mph winds, said Kyle Herring, a spokesman for the Houston space center.
Mission Control is on the second floor. 1 he shuttle simulators are located on the first floor of another building, but are elevated. I he.moon rocks collected bv Apollo astronauts from 1969 through 1972, as well as meteorites, are in an even more protected location on site.
Johnson Space Center, which employs about 13,000 people, is m a particularly flood-prone spot, on the eastern edge of Houston. It Mission C ontrol flooded or was seveicly damaged, additional flight controllers would be dispatched to Moscow to work from there for as long as necessary, said Allard Beutel, a NASA spokesman m Washiflgu a
A small group of flight controllers was sent to \usttn, Texas, and another to Greenbelt. Md., for consultation
See NASA. Page 3A