Coming up on News 7-
Fire breaks out at Melrose towers seriously injuring one person and forcing
seniors to evacuate-
Some Roanoke Firefighters are taking a gripe to court. We'll tell you what
they're mad about.
Plus beware scam artists who come out in the spring.
News 7 is next.
Fire broke out tonight
at a high rise where seniors live-
Everyone at Melrose Towers was evacuated. Firefighters think a cigarette may
be the cause.
SUPER=03-Fort Davis, TX;
Police shot and killed one Republic of Texas member- another
man is still at large in the woods.
Roanoke firefighters and Emergency Medical Technicians are switching between
Some firefighters don't like that.
They took they're fight to court. We'll find out what happened.
Plus Robin says some showers are on the way.
Join us for News 7 at Eleven.
An elderly woman is in very serious condition tonight after a fire at
Roanoke's Melrose Towers apartments.
The fire started in Veda (VEEDA) Linkswiler's seventh floor apartment.
Fire officials say it appears the blaze started on the couch.
They say Linkswiler was on oxygen, and the fire may have been sparked by a
IN Q=she was burned
((THOMAS TYREE/DISTRICT CHIEF; SHE WAS BURNED, HER LEG, PORTIONS OF HER FACE,
THE EVACUATED HER OUT AND SHE WAS TRANSPORTED TO THE HOSPITAL. THE FIRE'S UNDER
CONTROL, THE SPRINKLER SYSTEM WAS ACTIVATED, THERE'S SOME WATER DAMAGE AND SOME
SUPER=01-Thomas Tyree/District Chief
OUT Q=some smoke damage
The building's sprinkler system extinguished the fire before it could spread
outside the seventh floor room.
Residents evacuated the building when they heard the alarm.
IN Q=I went up
((REBECCA SIZEMORE/7TH FLOOR RESIDENT; I WENT UP THE ELEVATOR END AND STARTED
KNOCKING ON DOORS, THIS LADY WAS ASLEEP AND DIDN'T HAVE HER HEARING AIDS IN,
GOT HER UP AND THEN JUST STARTED KNOCKING ON DOORS AND GOT ALL MY HALL AND
STARTED DOWN THE STAIRS. ))
OUT Q=down stairs
The fire marshal is still investigating.
A move to relieve the stress on emergency medical technicians is agitating
some Roanoke city firefighters.
New assignments have firefighters and E-M-T's swapping jobs.
While both have the required training, some firefighters say a lack of
experience is a serious problem on both sides.
IN Q=what's going to happen
((RON MATHEWS/ROANOKE FIREFIGHTER; WHAT'S GOING TO HAPPEN IS PEOPLE ARE GOING
TO HAVE LESS EXPERIENCED FIREFIGHTERS DOING MEDICAL SERVICE, YOU'RE GOING TO
HAVE LESS EXPERIENCED MEDICAL PEOPLE DOING FIRE SERVICE AND THE PUBLIC IS NOT
GOING TO BE SERVED BY THIS.))
SUPER=01-Ron Mathews/Roanoke Firefighter;
OUT Q="served by this
Mathews filed a grievance, but a Roanoke judge rejected it today, saying the
Chief has the authority to make assignments as he sees fit.
The chief says reducing on-call hours for E-M-T's will improve service.
IN Q=by de-stressing
((JIM GRIGSBY/FIRE AND EMS CHIEF; BY DE-STRESSING, WE CAN PUT SOME OF THE
MEDICAL PERSONNEL ON THE ENGINE AND BRING THE ENGINE PERSONNEL OVER ON THAT
AMBULANCE TAKING SOME OF THAT STRESS OFF SO WE THINK IT'S ACTUALLY GOING TO BE
A BETTER LEVEL OF SERVICE, CERTAINLY NOT ANY DEGRADING OF SERVICE.))
SUPER=01-Jim Grigsby/Fire & EMS Chief;
OUT Q=degrading of service
Twenty-four more firefighters will take the same grievance to court this
Some workers in Danville may be out of a job. One of that area's largest
employers is closing a factory.
Dan River says it will phase out its Riverside mill over six months.
Right now the plant employs 350 people.
There WILL be job losses-- but Dan River isn't saying how many.
The company says many of the Riverside workers will be transferred to Dan
River's Schoolfield complex.
Other employees will get first crack at any newly created jobs in other
The company says the shutdown is a result of its multi million dollar
modernization in Danville.
Gunfire erupts in the Texas Mountains- one Republic of Texas member is dead-
Another is surrounded by police tonight.
SUPER=03-Davis Mountains, TX;
Officers say the man who was killed was firing at police dogs and choppers
overhead- when police returned fire.
The second man is believed to be inside a two mile area.
((WE HAVE A DPS HELICOPTER ABOVE. A BOARDER PATROL CHOPPER ABOVE AND WE'RE
MOVING MORE RANGERS THEY HAD FANNED OUT AND WERE CONVERGING A CONSIDERABLE
LARGER AREA NOW THAT WE KNOW WHERE THE SHOOTING IS COMING FROM ALL THE RANGERS
ARE CONVERGING ON THAT AREA.))
SUPER=01-Mike Cox/Dept. of Public Safety Spokesman;
OUT Q=CONVERGING ON THAT AREA."
The fugitive is one of the two men who escaped from the compound last week.
Timothy McVeigh's sister described her brother's political views under oath
including his belief that government agents in Waco, Texas gassed and burned
the people inside the compound.
She identified letters Timothy McVeigh wrote- caling agents in Waco fascist
tyrants who deserved to punished.
Jennifer McVeigh says at the end of 1994, her brother said he was no longer
in the propaganda stage and was now in the action stage.
Before testifying Jennifer says she stands by her brother.
((JENNIFER MCVEIGH/TIM MCVEIGH'S SISTER: HE'S JUST A NORMAL PERSON HE'S NOT
THIS EVIL THING THEY'RE PAINTING HIM TO BE. HE'S LIKE YOU AND I.))
SUPER=01-Jennifer McVeigh/Tim McVeigh's Sister;
OUT Q=like you and I. (shakes head)"
Jennifer McVeigh continues testifying tomorrow.
She exchanged few glances with her brother.
But when she smiled, he would smile.
GRAPHIC=roanoke city seal
Citizens groups in Roanoke want more of the city's 161 million dollar budget
spent on young people.
Their comments at tonight's public hearing centered on a proposed "city-wide
Three community groups want to copy the programs at the West End Center.
But they say the proposed budget doesn't give them enough money to help the
young people in their areas.
IN Q=WEST END CENTER
((TOM MCMICHAEL: WEST END CENTER HAS A BROAD BASE OF FUNDING AND WE HAVE A
BROAD BASE OF FUNDING. I THINK THE ISSUE IS WITH THIS WELFARE REFORM... THESE
NEEDS WILL BE EXAMINED AND GET SEVERE IN A SHORT PERIOD OF TIME. ))
SUPER=01-Tom McMichael/Presbyterian Community Center;
OUT Q=PERIOD OF TIME
Some residents in the Southeast section of the city say they're being
IN Q=they have not
((PAT DILLARD/PRESBYTERIAN CENTER: THERE HAS NOT... 15-20 YEARS AGO. ))
((PHILIP CHAGNON: IT'S NOT JUST THE ....KIDS IN WHOLESOME ACTIVITIES. ))
SUPER=01-Pat Dillard/Presbyterian Community Center; :00
SUPER=07-Philip Chagnon; :11
OUT Q=wholesome activities.
City Council is expected to finalize the budget next week.
HARD MUSIC UNDER
The image of the single homeless person could be changing. When we return
we'll see how families are making up a larger part of the homeless population,
and from Florida, we'll see how a jury hands a tobacco company a big victory.
wx ad lib
MUSIC UP FULL
SUPER=82-0.13''/minus 0.38''/10.15''/minus 2.75'';
SUPER=83-Down 0.90 foot/Down 0.47 foot;Lake levels
A big legal win today for tobacco giant R-J Reynolds.
A Florida jury decided the company is not liable for the death of Jean
Connor, a long-term smoker who died of lung cancer.
The jury found that the Winston and Salem cigarettes she smoked were not
dangerous and defective.
((PAUL CRIST/R.J. REYNOLDS' ATTORNEY: WE'RE OBVIOUSLY VERY PLEASED WITH THIS
SUPER=01-Paul Crist/R.J. Reynolds' Attorney; 00-03!
OUT Q=WITH THIS OUTCOME."
Connor died of lung cancer in 1995- just days after this video was made.
The 49 year old smoked three packs a day for more than 30 years.
((DANA RAULERSON/JEAN CONNOR'S SISTER: THEY KILL ONE HUNDRED AND SEVENTY
THOUSAND PEOPLE A YEAR AND SIX PEOPLE CAN'T SEE THAT. THEY LIED UNDER OATH.
R.J. REYNOLDS LIED UNDER OATH.))
SUPER=01-Dana Raulerson/Jean Connor's Sister;
OUT Q=lied under oath."
R-J Reynolds argued it should not be held responsible because
Connor knew the risks and chose to smoke anyway.
Friends and family today are mourning the death of Heritage High School
teacher and coach Dawn LaReau (la-ROW.)
LaReau died last week after the bicycle she was riding was struck by a
tractor trailer on Boonsboro Road in Lynchburg.
The 36-year old math teacher also coached the varsity girls basketball team
Students and faculty there were shocked by her sudden death.
IN Q=Well I think
((DR. ROGER ROBERTS/HERITAGE H.S. PRINCIPAL: WELL I THINK OUR STAFF MEMBERS AND
STUDENTS AS WELL, THEY'VE JUST BEEN HELPING EACH OTHER OUT AND THAT'S WHAT I'VE
ENCOURAGED THEM TO CONTINUE TO DO THROUGHOUT THE DAY AND THROUGHOUT THE WEEKS
SUPER=01-Roger Roberts/Heritage H.S. Principal; :00
OUT Q=the weeks coming.
LaReau also helped coach basketball across town at Randolph Macon Woman's
IN Q=She mean an
((JO TODD/RMWC BASKETBALL COACH: SHE MEANT AN AWFUL TO THE TEAM AND TO MYSELF
BOTH, IT WAS THE FIRST TIME I HAD HAD AN ASSISTANT COACH AND IT WAS WONDERFUL,
AND SHE WAS CERTAINLY A GREAT ADDITION TO OUR WHOLE PROGRAM.))
SUPER=01-Jo Todd/RMWC Basketball Coach; :00
OUT Q=our whole program.
Police, meanwhile, have completed their investigation into the accident, and
have sent the results to the commonwealth's attorney.
No word yet on whether charges will be filed against the driver of the
GRAPHIC=On the Street, On the Edge
**Note Anchor Tag**
The face of the homeless problem is changing.
More and more those faces belong to working families who can't afford a
home of their own.
In the first of a three- part series, "On the Street, On the Edge",
Kimberly McBroom has more.
IN Q=Seeing case worker Lynn Owens
SUPER=01-Lynn Owens/Homeless Assistance Team; :29
SUPER=07-William Howard; 1:06
SUPER=01-Donna Norvelle/Roanoke Human Development Coord.; 1:30
SUPER=03-Botetourt Co.; 1:38
OUT Q=McBroom, News 7
(( Seeing case worker Lynn Owens in her office at RAM House, you would never
know she had lived an entire year as a homeless person.
SOT tape 3 9:17:00
((I HAD A CHEVY CHEVETTE, AND THE SEAT LAID DOWN, SO THAT BECAME MY BED. ))
standup here ??
Several years ago, Owens had moved back home to Roanoke to care for her
When her mother was placed in a nursing home, Owens found herself with no
place to go.
At the time, she was attending Virginia Western Community College, and
working a couple of part- time jobs.
SOT TAPE 3 9:16:24
((LYNN OWENS/HOMELESS ASSISTANCE TEAM: IN THAT YEAR, I LIVED WITH RELATIVES
SOME. I SLEPT IN MY CAR. I STAYED-- OCCASIONALLY, I WOULD TAKE MONEY AND JUST
STAY IN A MOTEL WHEN I SHOULDN'T HAVE DONE THAT. BUT IT WAS JUST KIND OF A
BREAK, KIND OF A VACATION AWAY FROM MY HOMELESSNESS, ACTUALLY. AND IT WAS A
REALLY SCARY TIME. ))
Now Owens has made a career of locating and counseling homeless people.
Like herself, many are working people who had bad luck.
William and Sherry Howard were both laid off from their jobs at the same
Like their counselor, the Howards spent months living in their car.
SOT tape 3 10:13:37
((WILLIAM HOWARD: SOMETIMES, WE'D START IT AND LET IT RUN FOR FIVE OR 10
MINUTES, KNOWING WE DON'T HAVE THE MONEY TO BUY GAS. WE STILL RAN IT JUST TO
KEEP WARM. PLUS, WE HAD A HEAVY BLANKET IN THE CAR, AND WE JUST WRAPPED UP
CLOSE TOGETHER. ))
Stories like these are not uncommon.
City officials say many working people live from day to day, and are at
risk of losing their homes.
SOT tape 7 9:31:19
((DONNA NORVELLE/ROANOKE HUMAN DEVELOPMENT COORD.: WHEN WE DID THE INITIAL
STUDY 10 YEARS AGO, 10,000 HOUSEHOLDS IN THE ROANOKE VALLEY WERE IDENTIFIED AT
IMMEDIATE RISK OF HOMELESSNESS. THIS MEANS THEY'RE ONE PAYCHECK AWAY. ))
Norvelle also cautions against getting caught up in a stereotype of the
SOT tape 7 9:35:58
((NORVELLE: NOT EVERY PANHANDLER IS HOMELESS, OKAY? NOT EVERYBODY WITH A
BOARD AT THE INTERSECTION OF AN INTERSTATE IS HOMELESS, ALL RIGHT? ))
A 1995 survey found 25- percent of the homeless were families-- showing
homelessness is no longer a solitary problem.
SOT TAPE 3 10:17:46
((WILLIAM HOWARD: IF YOU'RE BY YOURSELF, YOU MIGHT BE ABLE TO MAKE IT A LITTLE
BIT EASIER. BUT WHEN YOU HAVE SOMEBODY WHO IS BY YOUR SIDE CONSTANTLY DAY IN
AN DAY OUT, YOU HAVE TO THINK OF THAT PERSON ALSO. ))
Kimberly McBroom, News 7.))
SS=On the Street, On the Edge
Tomorrow in the second part of "On the Street, On the Edge", we'll hear
from more working people who suddenly found themselves homeless. And we'll
find out where they can find help in the Roanoke Valley.
SOFT MUSIC UNDER
Stay with us, coming up next American Airline pilots vote on a new contract,
and even though they appear to be on the right track, we'll tell you why
organizers of a successful fundraiser say they will have to make some changes
before next year.
MUSIC UP FULL
An American Airlines deal takes off tonight.
The airline and its pilots union have ended a bitter contract war-
Tonight pilots ratified a new five year contract.
Just under 70 percent of the pilots voted yes on the deal.
Pilots will receive raises of more than 9 percent through 2001.
American is the nations largest domestic carrier.
The Better Business Bureau is hoisting the warning flag this spring.
Officials say be skeptical of individual home-repair contractors who show up
at your door unexpectedly.
If the person offers you an unbelievable deal... you might be one step away
from being taken by a scam artist.
IN Q=People fall
((FRAN STEPHANZ/BETTER BUSINESS BUREAU: PEOPLE FALL FOR THEM ALL OF THE TIME,
AS MUCH WARNING AS WE PUT OUT AND WE'RE TALKING ABOUT PAVERS, SEALERS, ROOFERS,
LANDSCAPERS. THINGS CONSUMERS SHOULD GET LOCALLY. ))
SUPER=01-Fran Stephanz/Better Business Bureau;
OUT Q=get locally
Law enforcement officials say it's important to be careful... because in
some cases, there's very little authorities can do.
IN Q=If the person
((TOM KINCAID/ROANOKE COUNTY POLICE: IF THE PERSON TELLS YOU THAT HE'S GONNA DO
A ROOFING JOB FOR YOU AND HE CHARGES YOU A TREMENDOUS AMOUNT OF MONEY BUT HE
DID WHAT HE SAID HE WAS GONNA DO, THEN MANY TIMES YOU DON'T HAVE MUCH
SUPER=01-Tom Kincaid/Roanoke Co. Police;
OUT Q=much recourse
Officials recommend you:
Check the person's license plates. If the tags are from a different state,
Don't sign a contract until you read it thoroughly.
Ask for references.
And make sure you get other bids before agreeing to have any repairs done.
SUPER=330-Clouding Up/Showers Likely/48-50/Shower Early/Then Breezy/64-68;
SUPER=331-Increasing Clouds/Shower Late/50-55/Turning Partly/Sunny/66-68;
SUPER=332-Increasing Clouds/Showers Late/47-49/Partly Cloudy/And Breezy/63-65;
SUPER=333-Showers Likely/By Midnight/48-50/Clouds And/Early Showers/63-66;
SUPER=334-Scattered/Showers/48-50/Clouds And/Showers Early/58-60;
And speaking of jobs.
Rick Pitino will likely announce today if he is leaving Kentucky to take over
the Boston Celtics.
He reportedly is being a 10 year, $70 million dollar contract.
The Blacksburg Indians failed to beat Byrd last night, but they still
clinched the Blue Ridge district's regular season title as the two teams
battled to a 1-all tie in double overtime.
SUPER=03-Vinton/Indians vs. Terriers; :00
Byrd head coach Jeff Highfill was understandably a little anxious last night
as his fell behind 1-to-nothing.
But his nerves would calm down just a bit when #15 Greg Johnson put the pill
in the left corner net to tie the game at 1-all.
The Indians had a number of chances to end the game in regulation, but Byrd's
defense was tough with goalie Roger Wimmer.
SUPER=34-Blacksburg/1/William Byrd/1/Double Overtime;
And the game ends in a 1-all tie in the double overtime.
The NBA playoffs resumed last night down in Houston as the Rockets and Sonics
hooked up in game one of their best of seven western conference semi-final.
The Rockets were swept out of the playoffs in four games by the Sonics last
But remember, the Rockets did not have Charles Barkley last year. Sir Charles
hits the three pointer for a 16 point lead in the third.
Shawn Kemp will try to keep the game from getting completely out of hand with
the power move inside.
But the Rockets would answer with the other two parts of their trifecta.
Clyde Drexler hits the three pointer to expand the lead.
And then the man, Hakeem Olajuwan, goes baseline and drops in the easy one.
The Rockets beat the Sonics 112 to 102.
The Philadelphia 76ers showed Larry Brown the money yesterday afternoon.
The former Pacers boss, who resigned last week in Indiana was given a 5 year
$25 million dollar contract to bring the glory days back to the city of
((LARRY BROWN/NEW 76ERS HEAD COACH:))
SUPER=01-Larry Brown/New 76er's Head Coach; :00
OUT Q=...SEE THAT CONTINUE."
Brown has only had 2 losing seasons in 24 years of coaching. He will have
complete control of the basketball operations on and off the court.
The folks in Philly had their minds on the hardwater last night as their
Flyers skated against the Sabres in game two of the eastern conference
semi-finals in Buffalo.
SUPER=03-Buffalo, NY/Game Two; :00
The Flyers won the first game, and last night they started fast - Mikael
Renberg gets the opening tally to make it 1-zip at the 4:47 mark of the first.
Then Chris Therien lights up goalie Steve Shields at 16:49 mark to make it a
It would end 2-to-1.
SUPER=31-Philadelphia/2/Buffalo/1/Flyers Lead 2 to 0;
Flyers head home with a 2 games to none lead, and the Sabres completely
frustrated in the series.
The Roanoke Women's lacrosse team found out today it will play Johns
Hopkins this Saturday in the NCAA Division III tournament.
The men's team opens the eight team NCAA tournament against Washington
College this Saturday at 1:30 in Chestertown, Maryland.
This afternoon, the Old Dominion Athletic Conference announced that Maroon
head coach Bill Pilat is the 1997 coach of the year.
((BILL PILAT/ODAC COACH OF THE YEAR:))
SUPER=01-Bill Pilat/ODAC Coach of the Year; :00
OUT Q=...an honor"
Roanoke senior goalie Chris Gordon is the ODAC player of the year. the
All-American amassed 166 saves this season.
IN Q=I think
((CHRIS GORDON/ODAC PLAYER OF THE YEAR:))
SUPER=01-Chris Gordon/ODAC Player of the Year; :00
Four Maroons made first team all-conference.
SS=Washington and Lee
While 3 Washington and Lee's Generals earned first team honors.
Still to come tonight, some local boxers are honored by Mayor Bowers, and
And the Glenvar softball team is again turning up the heat and district,
regional and state tourneys draw closer.
The Glenvar softball team is unbeaten in the Three River district and
looking for nothing less than a state championship.
And Steve Mason says they just might have the whole package this year to
make that a reality.
IN Q=first audio
SUPER=03-Roanoke Co; :00
SUPER=01-Amy Layman/Glenvar Senior Pitcher; :25
SUPER=01-Spike Harrison/Glenvar Softball Coach; :58
SUPER=01-Sheree Thompson/Glenvar Right Fielder; 1:27
OUT Q=...News 7 sports"
((Pitching. Often the cornerstone of Glenvar success. Amy Layman, along
with Hallie East and Kellie Julg have a combined ERA under one this season.
But the Lady Highlanders feel a fifth state title is possible because the
firepower is not just limited to the mound. Glenvar is batting over .370-- up
substantially from last year's .320.
The Lady Highlanders have won 14 straight district titles, reached the state
tourney 9 times and won the crown on four occasions.
But Layman's class, which includes two other seniors, has yet to win a state
Region C is hosting the Group A state tournament this year which means
Glenvar could play for the championship at either the Moyer Sports Complex or
at Greenhill Park. Steve Mason, News 7 Sports.))
And finally, a number of boxers fighting out of the Victory Gym in the
Roanoke City Boxing Association were recognized yesterday by City Council.
Four boxers picked up titles at the recent Virginia Golden Gloves
invitational in Norfolk.
Three others were runners-up.
And another won a collegiate championship in Annapolis, Maryland.
Congratulations to these guys and their first batch of honors.
The first running of the Advance Auto TRUST 500 had all kinds of chills and
thrills, but too many spills, according to organizers.
The go-cart race in downtown Roanoke raised roughly 40-thousand dollars for
TRUST, more than doubling the trouble center's previous fundraising high.
But a number of drivers flipped their vehicles, including the eventual
That has the race coordinator waving the caution flag, saying a number of
changes will take place if the event runs again.
SOT tape one 23:04:02
IN Q=We may
((DAVE FRANKLIN/TRUST 500 COORDINATOR: WE MAY PUT IT IN A NEW LOCATION, WE'RE
GONNA WORK ON THE TECHNICAL PART OF THE RACE, THE OFFICIATING. WE HAD A SMALL
GROUP OF INDIVIDUALS THAT WAS TRYING TO PUT ON A VERY LARGE EVENT. AND WE'LL
KNOW NEXT YEAR THAT WE NEED MORE PEOPLE TO HELP OUT TO MAKE THINGS RUN A LITTLE
SUPER=01-Dave Franklin/TRUST 500 Coordinator;
Dave Franklin says a number of potential sponsors who did not even take part
in the first race are already asking about next year's event.
W-D-B-J was among the local companies sponsoring the race.
It says it will probably continue in that role, as long as it believes the
race can be run safely.