Coming up on News Seven at Six--a family mourns the death of four youngsters
and their grandmother, who died in a Roanoke house fire this weekend.
And cleanup is underway in West Virginia after tremendous flooding.
In sports, Clemson upsets Wake Forest the Bulls beat the Pistons and Chris
Parker is honored as the top amateur athlete in West Virginia.
A brief return of winter weather today-- as snow showers moved through the
But high pressure's going to clear the skies and warm us up by tomorrow.
Four young children and their grandmother died last night in a house fire in
Investigators say a faulty extension cord is to blame.
Denise Allen has more on what is described as one of the city's worst fires
in nearly 30 years.
IN Q=Smoke billowed
SUPER=03-Roanoke/Last Night; :00
SUPER=01-Tony Sheppard/Neighbor; :32
SUPER=01-Chief Jim Grigsby/Roanoke City Fire Dept.; :48
SUPER=01-Tina Fisher/Neighbor; 1:19
OUT Q=News 7
((Smoke billowed from the house on Stewart Avenue in Roanoke.
Inside six year old Mark, his brothers five year old Clyde, four year old
Patrick and their sister three year old Nancy, along with the childrens'
grandmother, Goldie Christie Duncan, were all trapped by the flames.
The mother of the children, Patricia Leftwich told fire fighters she smelled
She went downstairs to investigate.
The fire spread so quickly she was unable to get back to her children and
A neighbor dialed 9-1-1 and tried to help.
((TONY SHEPPARD/NEIGHBOR: SMOKE COMING OUT OF THE TOP OF THE HOUSE. KIDS
HOLLERING OUTSIDE THE WINDOW. WENT BACK IN MY HOUSE, PUT ON A COAT AND GRABBED
A FLASHLIGHT. WENT IN THE FRONT DOOR THERE WAS JUST TOO MUCH SMOKE.))
((CHIEF JIM GRIGSBY/ROANOKE CITY FIRE DEPT.: THE STAIRWELL TO THE SECOND FLOOR
IS IN THE BACK. THEY WENT AND WERE ABLE TO GET A FAIRLY QUICK KNOCK DOWN OF
THE FIRE AND WE DISCOVERED THE BODIES INSIDE THE HOUSE.))
The fire apparently started in the kitchen.
Investigators say a short in an extension cord connecting a space heater to
an electrical outlet is the cause of the fire.
Family members say Patricia Leftwich is in shock.
Neighbors say they too are devastated by the loss.
((TINA FISHER/NEIGHBOR: SHE WOULD SMILE AND WAVE. HAD A LITTLE ANGELIC FACE
AND I THINK THAT'S WHAT I'LL MISS MOST. SHE WAS SO PRECIOUS. I MEAN THEY WERE
((WE ARE DEALING WITH OUT FIRE FIGHTERS RIGHT NOW AND TRYING TO DE-BRIEF THEM.
IT'S A VERY EMOTIONAL ISSUE FOR ALL OF US. IT'S A TRAGEDY FOR THIS
Neighbors say Patricia Leftwich was planning to move her family this Friday.
In addition to the move family members say she was working hard to better
her life by studying to be a nurse.
Fire investigators say they'll finalize their investigation early this week.
But family members say their struggle to understand this tragedy may never
Denise Allen News 7.))
Family members say Patricia Leftwich lost everything in the fire.
The Red Cross will be taking donations on her behalf.
Wythe County authorities are investigating the murder of a teenager whose
body was found on a creek bank early this morning.
Sheriff Investigator Doug Cooley says the mother of the 17 year old victim
called the sheriff's department yesterday to report her son had been missing
Investigators became suspicious after questioning people who may have been
with the victim.
Cooley says one of three suspects charged in the case led deputies to a
creek on Route 6-18 last night.
19 year old Jason Dennis Hibbs and 20 year old Eric Dwayne Ball, both of Max
Meadows, are charged with abduction and first degree murder.
A 17 year old whose name has not been released is charged with abduction.
Investigator Cooley says the victim and Hibbs got into a fight at Hibbs'
Cooley says it's not clear whether the victim was dead when the three
suspects allegedly dumped him over the bank-- or he may have drowned in the
rain swollen creek.
A Lynchburg man is dead after an early morning shooting outside a night
Police responded to a report of shots fired at 3000 Wards Road.
Investigators say 24-year-old Robert Lewis Allen had apparently been
fighting in the parking lot outside a night club called The Glass House.
Allen was transported to Lynchburg General Hospital where he died from gun
shot wounds to his chest.
The shooting happened around three this morning.
Police are not saying if they have a suspect.
Fire investigators are looking into a rash of mobile home fires in
Lynchburg this morning.
Two mobile homes in the 44-hundred block of Wards Road burned last night.
Firefighters responded to a third call around 6-30 this morning.
Officials told News 7 they secured the fire scene last night.
But when they returned to the area this morning the front door to one of the
burned trailers was open and another trailer was fully engulfed.
There is no word on the cause of the fires.
None of the mobile homes were occupied.
The investigation is on-going.
Flooding has caused a water shortage in Pendleton County, West Virginia.
Several of the county's water tanks have run dry.
Residents in the Town of Franklin have been asked to conserve water.
Public Safety officials also say residents should boil water for at least a
minute before drinking.
Pocahontas County and Greenbrier County are also struggling in the
aftermath of the flood.
The National Guard is removing debris and repairing bridge approaches in
Red Cross shelters are still assisting almost 300 people whose homes have
been damaged by water.
Most power and phone service in the area has been restored.
HARD MUSIC UNDER
Coming up on News-7,
They say the Christmas spirit should last all year.
But even if it doesn't, for many, the bills do!
We'll talk to a credit counselor who has some advice on how to deal with
holiday overspending that may now be catching up with you.
wx ad lib
Well, it looked a little like Christmas for some folks this morning--
A trough of low pressure swinging through the mid- Atlantic brought us
some snow showers.
But that moisture's headed east-- and high pressure's going to regain
control of our weather tonight and tomorrow.
Sunny skies and warmer temperatures as you head back to work.
We'll tell you all about it--coming up.
MUSIC UP FULL
The driver of a tractor trailer fell prey to icy road conditions in Roanoke
County this afternoon.
State police say the truck was travelling south on Interstate 81 near mile
maker 1-37-- when it lost control on a patch of ice on a bridge.
The truck then flipped on its side.
A Chevy Blazer was also involved in the wreck.
A Ft. Lewis fire truck was enroute to an unrelated call when the accident
unfolded right in front of them.
IN Q=This wasn't the
((WOODY HENDERSON/FT. LEWIS FIRE DEPT.: THIS WASN'T THE ORIGINAL CALL WE WERE
GOING TO. AND AS WE APPROACHED THE BRIDGE THE TRACTOR TRAILER WENT SIDEWAYS
AND I WAS CALLING INTO OUR DISPATCHER AS THE TRUCK WAS OVER TURNING.))
SUPER=01-Woody Henderson/Ft. Lewis Fire Dept.;
OUT Q=was over turning.
The truck driver and his passenger were not injured.
However, the driver of the blazer was transported to Roanoke Memorial
The name of that driver and his condition has not been released.
Christmas is just a memory, but now you may be getting little reminders of
the holidays in the mail.
And for some those little reminders come in the way of big bills.
Shoppers who bought on credit last month are getting the bills now.
And some are finding it difficult to pay up.
Credit Counselors say those who are in financial trouble after the holidays
usually have a history of bad budgeting.
Ed Garretson says many don't save, over-spend and are unfamiliar with their
IN Q=they forget
((ED GARRETSON/CONSUMER CREDIT COUNSELOR: THEY FORGET THA THEY'RE WEARING OUT
THEIR TIRES. THEY FORGET CHRISTMAS IS COMING. THEY FORGET THEY'RE GOING TO
HAVE SOME EXTRA MEDICAL EXPENSES. WHEN THOSE THINGS HAPPEN THEY'RE TAKEN BY
SURPRISE BECAUSE THEY HAVEN'T PUT ENOUGH MONEY ASIDE FOR THAT.))
SUPER=01-Ed Garretson/Consumer Credit Counseling;
OUT Q=aside for that
Garrettson says planning your spending and not using your credit cards will
help ease budgeting pains.
Consumer Credit Counseling offers a free budgeting class on the first
Thursday of every month.
Many of their clients actually cut up all their credit cards to show that
they're sincere about getting out of the red.
A Roanoke and a Pulaski company announce big expansion plans, and some
encouraging unemployment numbers for our area.
Len Besthoff recaps the week's top economic stories in southwest and central
Virginia with the News-7 Business Review.
IN Q=NAT SOT
SUPER=03-Buena Vista/File Tape; :05
SUPER=03-Wytheville/Thursday; :46 Quick
OUT Q=NAT SOT
Less than two years after it opened, the Montcalm Corporation shut down its
Buena Vista operations.
The company made fuel pellets out of recycled paper, and employed about 20
After several years in the planning stages, Roanoke Electric Steel will move
forward with a 14-million-dollar expansion plan.
The move will mean roughly 15 new jobs.
The Roanoke Valley has tied Northern Virginia for the LOWEST jobless rate
among the state's metro areas, coming in at three-percent.
Statewide, unemployment was four point two percent last November.
When you rank the state by MUNICIPALITY, our area had communities on both
the low and high end of the spectrum.
Bedford and Salem had some of the lowest jobless numbers, while Charlotte
and Bath counties had two of the highest.
By a two vote margin, workers at the Polymer Corporation in Wytheville voted
to join the Oil, Chemical and Atomic Workers union.
The final tally; 60 IN FAVOR, 58 AGAINST.
A sock manufacturer that employs 13-hundred people in Pulaski is about to
get even bigger.
The Renfro Corporation is investing millions of dollars into an expansion
that should create up to 450 new jobs over the next few years.
Checking the Dow Jones Industrial Average for the week, it rose 124-points,
closing at 5184-point-6-8.
Len Besthoff, with the News-7 Business Review.
HARD MUSIC UNDER
Still to come on News 7,
Virginians celebrated history today in Roanoke.
Many wore traditional attire as they honored Confederate Generals.
Stay tuned for that story and more.
MUSIC UP FULL
Some Virginians took time today to honor Confederate Generals Robert E. Lee
and Stonewall Jackson.
In downtown Roanoke members of the Fincastle Rifles dressed in traditional
confederate soldier attire, played bagpipes, and participated in military
They say the Confederate flag is a symbol of tradition and way of life.
IN Q=My ancestors bought
((LT. CMDR. JOHN BRISCOE/FINCASTLE RIFLES: MY ANCESTORS FOUGHT UNDER THIS FLAG
FOR THEIR HOME COUNTRY. IT IS SIMPLY OUR SYMBOL. THERE ARE SOME PEOPLE WHO
HAVE ABUSED IT AND WE DON'T STAND FOR THAT. BUT WE ALSO PUBLICLY PROCLAIM IT
AND WE CARRY THE FLAG PROUDLY.))
BUTT, BUTT, BUTT
((LT. CMDR. JERRY ALDHIZER/FINCASTLE RIFLES: MY GREAT GRANDFATHER DIED
FIGHTING UNDER THIS FLAG. WE WERE FIGHTING FOR SOUTHERN INDEPENDENCE FIGHTING
A NORTHERN AGGRESSION COUNTRY THAT INVADED THE SOUTH. THE SOUTH AT THAT TIME
WAS A DIFFERENT COUNTRY... IT WAS THE CONFEDERATE STATES OF AMERICA.))
SUPER=01-Lt. Cmdr. John Briscoe/Fincastle Rifles;
SUPER=01-Lt. Cmdr. Jerry Aldhizer/Fincastle Rifles;
OUT Q=confederate states of America.
A wreath of flowers was also laid at the foot of a memorial for the two
Drug addiction can destroy a person's life.
But at the Rescue Mission in Roanoke, there are success stories--people
who've managed to get their lives back on track.
Denise Allen reports each Friday they share their experiences, in the hopes
of helping others.
IN Q=i found
SUPER=01-Joy Sylvester Johnson/Rescue Mission; :18
OUT Q=news 7
IN Q=i found
OUT Q=save any body
These men are learning to save themselves.
Friday is rally day at the Rescue Mission.
Here all victories are celebrated.
IN Q=most of the
OUT Q= just shout it out
In the mission's drug recovery participants can get help with their
education, learn social skills and learn what it takes to be productive in
IN Q=they showed me
OUT Q=right with yourself
Robert Cutroni says now that he's off drugs he's able to make friends and is
rebuilding relationships with his family.
David Hockenberry came to the mission after nearly drinking himself to
Both he and Cutroni graduated from the program.
But they say they still get inspiration from the mission.
IN Q=i'm working in
OUT Q=you sober
The Rescue Mission's program is six months long and soon will be lengthened
to nine months.
A program for women is also planned.
Sylvester-Johnson says that will just give them more to celebrate on
Denise Allen News 7.
And coming up, The Bulls win their seventh straight game we'll check in with
Ferrum Head coach Bill Pullen.
And Clemson pulls off a big upset in the A-C-C knocking off sixth ranked
Clemson pulled off a big upset in the A-C-C this afternoon the 19-th ranked
Tigers beating 6-th Ranked Wake Forest.
SUPER=03-Clemson, SC/RAYCOM; :
Dave Odom and the Deacons working on a perfect conference record.
But Terrell McIntyre led the tiger attack in the first half this basket
gave Clemson a 16 to 11 lead.
Tony Rutland came out firing for the Deacons he hits this three pointer
but Wake Trailed 16 to 14.
The Tigers went inside against Tim Duncan Harold Jamison with the score
and the Tigers led 18 to 14 at the break.
Wake's Tony Rutland opened it up in the second half he hit back to back
jumpers and the Deacons cut the lead to 5.
But Clemson's Greg Buckner hit a SUPER=33-Clemson/=55/Wake
Forest/=41;big bucket the Tigers stretched the lead to 10 and Clemson beats
Wake Forest 55 to 41.
The Chicago Bulls won their 11-th straight game this afternoon beating the
Detroit Pistons 111 to 96.
SUPER=03-Auburn Hills, MI/NBA-NBC SPORTS; :
Scottie Pippen and Michael Jordan talk during a time out.
But Grant Hill said this is my house he takes in for the Slam and the
Pistons led 24 to 22.
Pippen and Jordan took over in the third quarter. Scottie pulls up and
hits the three Chicago led 60 to 43.
And when Jordan scored on the pump for two of his game high 36 points the
Bulls led the Pistons 67 to 50.
Chicago opened it up in the fourth SUPER=32-Chicago/111/Detroit/=95;
quarter leading by as many as 20 and the Bulls beat the Pistons 111 to 95.
SUPER=03-Toronto, ON/NBA-CTV; :
In Toronto, The Raptors hosted the Boston Celtics.
Junior Burrough gets out on the break and takes in for the slam but the
Celtics still trailed by seven.
Boston made a run for it in the second half but the Raptors hold on for
the two point win.
For that and all of the scores lets check the boards.
IN Q=FIRST SCORE
There are comeback players of the year in all sports and over in Ferrum
Panther head coach Bill Pullen may be the "Come back coach of the Year."
IN Q="On October
SUPER=01-Bill Pullen/Panther Head Coach; :16
SUPER=01-Chuck Ellis/Senior Forward; 1:00
OUT Q=.........this season."
((On October 28-th Pullen lost control of his pickup on a slick Franklin County
road and hit a tree. He was trapped in the vehicle for two hours.
After the rescue Pullen was in the hospital with several serious
((BILL PULLEN/PANTHER HEAD COACH: ))
((NAT SOT: ))
((But despite those injuries, Pullen was back on the bench coaching the
Panthers from a wheel chair and he just recently gave up his crutches.
And because of the injuries and a young team Pullen began to question his
((CHUCK ELLIS/SENIOR FORWARD: ))
((Pullen is back on his feet again but with a noticeable limp.
And even though he's still recovering from the injuries, his main focus is
getting the team back on its feet.
When we visited pullen the Panthers were 3 and 6 and 1 and o in the
((BILL PULLEN: ))
((Pullen may limp the rest of the season but his main goal is to get the
Panthers back to defend their Dixie Conference championship later this
Lynchburg's Chris Parker picked up a big award from the West Virginia
Parker, a tailback at Marshall university, received the Hardman Award the
oldest sports award for top amateur athletes in the state.
During the 1995 season the Senior tailback broke the Southern Conference
career rushing and scoring records.
Parker was named first team All-America by two groups and he was the
league's Offensive Player of the year after rushing for more than 18-hundred
yards and 18-touchdowns.
The Dallas Cowboys are ready to quiet the critics and give their head
coach Barry Switzer a Super Bowl ring.
Switzer has been critized by the media all season long. But he has the
respect of his Players.
And when it comes to comparing Switzer to former Cowboys head coach Jimmy
Johnson the players say Switzer is their man.
IN Q="Jimmy didn't
((EMMITT SMITH/COWBOY RUNNING BACK: ))
((NATE NEWTON/COWBOY OFFENSIVE LINEMAN: ))
SUPER=01-Emmitt Smith/Cowboys Running Back; :00
SUPER=01-Nate Newton/Cowboys Offensive Lineman; :21
OUT Q=......would retire."
SUPER=#C-380; Weather Roll