Coming up on NEWS 7 at SIX:
Kind words for the boss from a woman just laid off by G-E in Salem.
And they've stepped up efforts to find a missing grad student from Tech.
We'll join the search in Fayette County, West Virginia later in the newscast.
Tonight on New 7 sports, we'll take a look back at a smoking day at Martinsville.
Steve Mason has out regular Monday night football report from Charlottesville.
And the first firing of postseason is announced in the big leagues as the Rockies ax Don Baylor.
Our heat wave comes to an end with another record but what about the drought? Let's just say, there is very little rain in sight.
They knew it was just a matter of time.
But that didn't make things any easier for the 100 General Electric employees who learned today that their jobs have been eliminated.
Scott Goldberg is in the NEWS-7 newsroom tonight.
Scott, this is the second, big layoff this year.
Why does the G-E plant in Salem need to keep cutting its workforce?
Keith, it's always about the bottom line.
General Electric cares very much about its stock value and its shareholders, and is very committed to posting strong earnings.
Lately, that has meant combining divisions within the company to make things work more efficiently.
And part of that strategy called "cost-cutting" means cutting jobs.
[SUPER=01-Marsha Robinson/Laid-Off Worker;13]
[OUT Q="...is still slow."]
(( It was people like Marsha Robinson who were sent packing.
She moved to Roanoke three years ago, then started working at G-E.
Now, she's moving out of her office; laid off from a job she didn't want to leave.
[SOT 11 32 38]
[IN Q=The people]
((MARSHA ROBINSON: THE PEOPLE I WORKED WITH WERE EXCEPTIONALLY NICE PEOPLE. I'M NOT JUST SAYING THAT. THE GENTLEMAN THAT WAS MY BOSS WAS AN EXCELLENT PERSON.))
Robinson is one of the hundred salaried employees G-E is letting go.
Add that to the 245-people laid off in January, and the Salem plant has cut close to 20-percent of its workers this year.
But Robinson said she understands.
[SOT 11 32 19]
[IN Q=GE IS]
((GE IS A NICE COMPANY. JUST HAVE TO THINK ABOUT THE BOTTOM LINE, LIKE EVERYBODY ELSE.))
[OUT Q=everybody else]
Robinson said she's not bitter; she has no hard feelings.
But many employees wonder how long this can go on.
It used to be that business slowed down, but didn't stay that way, and G-E rehired some of the laid-off workers.
This year business in Salem got off to a slow start... and so far, business is still slow.))
G-E did not say if more layoffs lie ahead.
The company DID say it has no plans to permanently close the Salem plant.
(QUESTION: What about the people laid off today? Is the company taking care of them?)
Yes, G-E has a reputation for being a good place to work.
It is giving the laid-off employees severance pay and benefits for a year.
G-E also offers placement services to help the workers find their next jobs.
He helped put his accomplice on death row.. today a Lynchburg man was sentenced for HIS role in an Appomattox County murder last year.
20- year- old Trevor Jones was given two life terms plus 35 years for the murder of Lisa Yvonne Crider in May, 1997.
Jones' and his accomplice.. Brandon Wayne Hedrick kidnapped, robbed and sodomized Crider.. then shot her in the head and dumped her body in the James River.
Jones' told a jury that Hedrick was the one who fired the fatal shot.. Hedrick got the death penalty.
Prosecutor Tommy Lawson says both sentences were "proper".
Meanwhile, the fate of another death row inmate is still in the hands of the U-S Supreme Court.
Tommy David Strickler was scheduled to die September 16th for the 1990 murder of Roanoke native Leann Whitlock.
Strickler's case was scheduled for conference today.
The high court is deciding whether he received a fair trial.
Carrol Eugene Humphries lost another round in his battle to stay out of West Virginia today.
He's charged with murder in Greenbrier County for allegedly hiring two men to kill a romantic rival 20 years ago.
In court today, Humphries' lawyers tried unsuccessfully to convince the judge to release him.
They claimed the extradition warrant is no good, because it wrongly labels Humphries a fugitive.
[IN Q=Mr. Humphries has fully]
((BILL PARKS/DEFENSE ATTORNEY; MR. HUMPHRIES HAS FULLY COOPERATED WITH EVERY INVESTIGATIVE AGENCY, THE ATF, THE FBI, THE WEST VIRGINIA STATE POLICE, THE VIRGINIA STATE POLICE, AND WE BELIEVE NOW THAT SOMEBODY OUT THERE'S MAKING A DEAL, AND HE IS BEING VICTIMIZED AGAIN))
[SUPER=01-Bill Parks/Defense Attorney;]
[OUT Q=victimized again]
Humphries appealed the judge's decision, so his extradition will be delayed for another 30 days.
His fight may outlast the Alleghany County jail itself, where he's being held without bond.
The jail is about to be demolished, and all inmates will be relocated by the end of the week.
Private businesses, city officials and residents are racing to save a Roanoke log cabin by Thursday.
That's when a judge will decide whether to demolish the home for safety reasons.
Amos Construction Company donated a couple thousand dollars worth of machines and manpower to clean up the historic Howbert House today.
It's a rare two-story, 19th century log cabin.
Contractors pulled up the porch in search of a slate floor underneath.
Historians hope to find a buyer, but it's no giveaway ... the cabin plus nine acres costs a quarter million dollars.
[IN Q=It is a high price]
((BRIAN SHELBURNE/ROANOKE VALLEY PRESERVATION FOUNDATION: IT IS A HIGH PRICE BUT I THINK WE HAVE A FAIR SHOT AT IT. THERE'S A LOT OF LOCAL INTEREST IN PRESERVING THE HOUSE. PEOPLE SEEM TO RECOGNIZE THE IMPORTANCE OF IT AND THE NEED FOR PRESERVING IT.))
[SUPER=01-Brian Shelburne/Rke. Valley Preservation Foun.;]
[OUT Q=for preserving it]
The Preservation Foundation has applied for grant money to buy the house and hopes for a response by November.
Realtors will discuss the cabin in a public meeting this Thursday night.
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The director of a troubled school goes to Richmond in hopes of staying open. That story is still ahead.
And later, the search for a missing Virginia Tech grad student. We'll have a live report from West Virginia.
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The 12-year old boy hit by a car last week remains in critical condition.
Antone (AN-TWAN) Green was riding his bike near Gibson Middle School in Danville was he was struck.
He was flown to Duke University Medical Center with serious head injuries.
That accident serves as an example of the importance of teaching bicycle safety.
At Schoolfield Elementary in Danville this afternoon, 130-students took part in a bike rodeo.
With helmets on, the children practiced their riding.
[IN Q=Each course is designed]
((LISA HALL/STATE FARM INSURANCE: EACH COURSE IS DESIGNED TO HAVE DIFFERENT SKILLS SUCH AS MANUVERING, STOP AND GO, THERE'S ONE WHERE YOU GO IN AND OUT OF PYLONS, AND IT'S BALANCE AND STOPPING CONTROL. IT'S DIFFERENCE STATIONS AND HOPEFULLY BY THE END OF THE RODEO THEY'LL LEARN SOME DIFFERENT TECHNIQUES THAT WILL MAKE THEM SAFER BICYCLISTS.))
[SUPER=01-Lisa Hall/State Farm Insurance;]
[OUT Q=them safer bicyclists.]
A local State Farm Insurance agency sponsored the bike rodeo, with the help of police and parents.
The headmaster of Botetourt County's Wilderness Leadership Academy made the trek to Richmond today in a last-ditch effort to save the school's license.
Colonel Gene Nervo declined to discuss the allegations against his school.
He also insisted reporters be banned from the hearing on allegations of student violence, staff negligence, and boys who say they were sexually assaulted by each other.
[IN Q=We are]
((ROBERT WHYTAL/STATE HEARING EXAMINER: WE ARE JUST HEARING EVIDENCE AND I WOULDN'T WANT TO COMMENT FURTHER ABOUT THAT. And so you would then make a recommendation? THAT IS CORRECT. And who does that recommendation go to? THAT RECOMMENDATION WOULD GO TO THE SUPERINTENDENT OF PUBIC INSTRUCTION.))
[SUPER=01-Robert Whytal/State Hearing Examiner;]
[OUT Q=Public Instruction.]
[SUPER=03-Botetourt Co./File Tape;]
If the state superintendent decides to NOT renew the Wilderness Leadership Academy's license, state officials say that will be a first in Virginia.
A strong day for some stocks on Wall Street, but not all.
[TAKE DOW & NASDAQ PAGE ]
The Dow rose 80 points to close at 81-09. NASDAQ was off by a little more than four points.
[ AE /ATT /Bell/Columbia/Crestar;]
[Dana/Dimon/Dominion Resources/First Union/First VA]
[General Electric/Kroger/Nationsbank/Norfolk Southern/Optical Cable]
[phillip morris/roanoke electric steel/trigon/wachovia/walmart]
Searchers in West Virginia spent much of today looking below the world's longest arch bridge, for a missing Virginia Tech student.
[Tale graphic map]
They're trying to find 24 year old Robert Kovack, who's been missing for more than a week, since leaving campus in Blacksburg.
The search is centered in Fayette County, West Virginia overlooking the New River Gorge Bridge.
That's where Teresa Hamilton joins us live with the latest.
[SUPER=06-Fayette Co., WV;]
( ad lib)
(Rollcue: "...discovered last week.")
[SUPER=01-Brad Mankins/West Va. State Trooper; :00]
[SUPER=03-Fayette Co./West Virginia; :10]
[SUPER=01-Virgil Berry/Searcher; :]
[OUT Q= "...in touch with us."]
[SUPER=05-Fayette Co., WV;]
( ad lib)
There's a new shelter for domestic violence victims and the homeless in Franklin County.
23 women and children should be able to move in within a month.
The Mod-U-Kraf home has conference and counseling rooms, plus a playroom and handicapped accessible bedrooms.
It triples the space of the old shelter next door which houses 10 people.
[IN Q=We definitely]
((CYNTHIA TREADWAY/SHELTER DIRECTOR: WE DEFINITELY HAVE A NEED. WE HAVE HAD FIFTEEN TO TWENTY WOMEN AND JUST AS MANY OR MORE CHILDREN WE'VE HAD TO TURN AWAY EACH QUARTER, WHICH IS A THREE-MONTH PERIOD.))
[SUPER=01-Cynthia Treadway/Shelter Director;]
[OUT Q=three-month period]
Treadway says the NUMBER of domestic violence victims is not growing -- but more people know help is available.
The new shelter cost more than 500-thousand-dollars, mostly grant money.
Local businesses donated some of the furniture and appliances.
Coming up tonight on the Big 7, UVa gets an out of conferecne break this week agaainst San Jose State.
Steve Mason will have that story, plus a big league manager has been fired today.
And, Rudd won the battle but Gordon continues to win the war. More on a hot day in the Ville and a hot points race coming up in sports.
Major league baseball's regular season wraps up tonight with the Cubs and Giants hooking up in a special playoff game to determine the wildcard team.
The Rockies forced this playoff by beating the Giants yesterday.
But this afternoon Colorado fired manager Don Baylor.
He's the only skipper in the Rockies' sixc year history.
The Rockies were 8 games under 500 this year.
He's been offered a job in the front office.
Wac power San Jose State visits Charlottesville Saturday. And in one sense, the west coast team will be a welcome site, considering the Cavaliers hardly had a day at the beach against Duke this past weekend. Steve Mason explains.
[IN Q=first audio]
[SUPER=03-Durham, NC/Cavaliers vs. Blue Devils;00]
[SUPER=01-Patrick Kerney/UVa Defensive End; :12]
[SUPER=01-Anthony Poindexter/UVa Leading Tackler; :30]
[SUPER=01-George Welsh/UVa Head Coach; 1:08]
[OUT Q=News 7 Sports]
It was so hot at the Martinsville Speedway yesterday that I acutally saw a robin pull a worm out of the ground using a pot holder!
And the crews almost needed one to get the drivers out of their cars.
[SUPER=01-Ricky Rudd/NAPA 500 Winner;:37]
[SUPER=01-Jeff Gordon/Winston Cup Points Leader; 1:30]
[SUPER=01-Jack Roush/Martin's Car Owner; 1:41]
[OUT Q=...IN HIS CAREER."]
(( The Virginia Museum of Natural History provided a Woolly mammoth for the prerace festivities, but not vene this Ice Age creature could help cool down the Martinsville Speedway.
Before driver introductions, NASCAR's finest were ducking for shade under a flatbed truck.
Eventual winner Ricky Rudd tried to beat the heat with some heel protection.
He didn't get a hot foot, but when his cool suit quit working, he almost passed out in the car.
He amazingly hung on to win.
For his efforts he got $102 thousand dollars and a snoot full of oxygen. He now has at least one win in 16 straight seasons.
((RICKY RUDD/NAPA 500 WINNER:))
While most of the drivers hung in there, many of the 81 thousand fans in attendance had to run for cover.
The oppresive heat burnt backs and sent most back to the concession stands in search of more fluids.
It was even nuttier at times on the track as wheels rolled, tires blew, and the Winston car what else but smoked.
Others spun and still more smoked, but the top two contenders for the title managed to hang on.
Jeff Gordon finished second with Mark Martin third.
Gordon leads by 199 points and needs only to finish fifth or better in the final 6 events to win the title.
((JEFF GORDON/LEADS MARTIN BY 199 POINTS:))
((JACK ROUSH/MARTIN'S CAR OWNER:))
The circuit heads to Charlotte this week, and keep in mind Gordon has never won a race in the months of October and November.))
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A ministry in Danville is celebrating an important anniversary: it has been spreading God's word to inmates for 20-years.
Good News Jail and Prison Ministry came to Danville in 1978.
It provides inmates with a full-time chaplain, worship services, and bible studies.
Former inmate Nancy Frazier says the ministry helped her find God and herself.
[IN Q=I came in as a Christain]
((NANCY FRAZIER/FORMER INMATE: I CAME IN AS A CHRISTIAN AND I THOUGHT THAT I KNEW THE LORD AND I THOUGHT THAT WHAT I WAS DOING WAS RIGHT BUT I WAS WRONG AND THE JUSTICE SYSTEM STRAIGHTENED THAT OUT FOR ME.))
((DAVID ABERNATHY/SENIOR CHAPLAIN: THE IDEA OF PUTTING A CHAPLAIN IN, A PASTOR IN THE FACILITY IS TO REALLY BRING A LIGHT TO A DARK PLACE.))
[SUPER=01-Nancy Frazier/Former Inmate; :00]
[SUPER=01-David Abernathy/Senior Chaplain; :11]
[OUT Q=light to a dark place.]
The ministry believes it can break the cycle of crime one life at a time.
So far this year, the ministry has counseled more than 700-inmates.
Some local residents plan to wear green ribbons at a council meeting tonight.
Jean Jadhon tells us what that's all about.
Keith, the ribbons are a protest over a recommendation from Salem's planning commission.
That group proposed a mixed-use development for what's known as the Elizabeth campus.
Neighbors believe the land across from the Salem Civic Center should be kept as open space.
They'll make their case to city council tonight,
and we'll tell you what the decision is tonight on News-7 at 11.
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