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WDBJ 7 news at Noon for 08/31/00
Authorities still aren't releasing the names of the victims in yesterday's fatal plane crash in Lexington, despite finding key items at the crash site.
And we'll have the latest on how Mother Nature is helping to fight wildfires out west, and how local firefighters plan to battle against the blazes in Texas.
Your forecast remains the same today as scattered showers are expected to continue with possible stormy weather. We'll tell you about the lengthy stay of the wet weather coming up.
Federal officials from the National Transportation Safety Board are in Lexington today trying to figure out why a plane crashed in the center of the city.
Meantime, State Police say the victims who died where two men from out of state. Tina Tenret is in Lexington with the latest information..
[Double Boxes=Kim ANCHOR/Tina Microwave]
Of all the help firefighters are receiving in Montana, the biggest help is coming from Mother Nature.
It's coming none too soon--
The cost of battling the western wildfires could exceed a BILLION dollars.
Bob McNamara has more.
(///// SOT /////)
[SUPER=03-Red Lodge, MT; :10]
[SUPER=01-Linda Wilson/Evacuee; :16]
[SUPER=01-Rand Herzberg/U. S. Forest Service; :43]
[SUPER=01-Bob McNamara/Reporting; :51]
[OUT Q=Bob McNamara, CBS News, Red Lodge, MT.]
TRACK: Finally, a break in the weather. Light rain in the mountains
above Red Lodge...was like a shower of hope...the nightmare would end
NATS/WOMAN: "...IT'S THE NEW MILLENNIUM WE GOT TO HAVE OUR COMPUTER."
TRACK: And yet...the Wilson's were evacuating...Taking what they
could...while they could..in case a nearby wildfire came down their
SOT LINDA WILSON/EVACUEE: "...I MEAN I LOVE THIS PLACE...I LOVE THE
MOUNTAINS BUT ITS NOT, ITS NOT LIKE LOSING A PERSON. AND ITS NOT LIKE
LOSING A LIFE AND WE HAVEN'T HAD ANY LIVES LOST IN THIS FIRE."
TRACK: Like most of the other remote back country fires that have
charred 700 thousand acres of Montana this summer...a blaze near Red
Lodge sent scores of people running for their lives.
SOT LINDA WILSON: "...IT SOUNDED LIKE A HURRICANE...IT WAS ALMOST LIKE
EXPLODING. YOU KNOW PINE TREES EXPLODE WHEN THEY GET HOT SO I DIDN'T
HAVE TIME TO SIT AROUND AND CRY ABOUT IT."
Track: Today, as cooler weather and cloudy skies took the heat off hot
shot crews....bulldozers plowed fire breaks to slow potential grass
fires from threatening nearby cabins. Some have installed sprinkler
systems on their roofs. While volunteer firemen scrape wood chips away
from cabin foundations.
SOT RAND HERZBERG/US FOREST SERVICE: "WE REALLY APPRECIATE ALL THE
VOLUNTEER HELP BUT THERE'S MORE THAN WE CAN HANDLE.
SOT BOB SANDMAN: "...YOU FOLKS THAT ARE OUT OF YOUR HOMES, THOSE OF US
ON THE FIRE TEAM WILL KEEP YOU IN OUR PRAYERS AND LETS JUST GET THRU
THIS THING TOGETHER."
TRACK: And together... means even the pets...
SOT/WOMAN (No ID) "..EVERY ANIMAL HAS AN EVACUATION PLAN. SOME WILL BE
TRUCKED OUT..SOME WILL BE TRAILERED OUT AND SOME WILL BE AIRLIFTED OUT.."
BM, CBSN, Red Lodge, MD
Wildfires are also scorching Texas.
That's where a group of local firefighters is going to help battle the flames.
The Forest Service is sending a dozen firefighters, five bulldozers and two support trucks to the eastern part of the Lone Star state.
The move is part of the Southeastern Forest Compact, an agreement between southeastern states to offer aid in times of need.
The team has had plenty of practice battling similar blazes.
(///// SOT /////)
[IN Q=Texas fires are...]
[SUPER=01-Chris Thomsen/Virginia Department of Forestry]
((Texas fires are alot like Virginia fires, especially down in the Piedmont. Land is level, the fuels tend to be alot more typical of Virginia where you have your oaks and your pine forests.))
[OUT Q=your pine forests.]
The firefighters will spend two weeks in Texas before they'll be sent home and replaced by another team of twelve.
A Danville woman's charge of malicious wounding has been upgraded to murder.
Sue Ellen Totten is accused of stabbing her boyfriend in the chest earlier this month.
It happened at 226 Winslow Street in Danville.
The victim, 49 year old Larry Neal Johnson died a couple of weeks after the crime at U-V-A Medical Center.
A hiker who had been missing since Saturday walked over 30 miles to get to the Roanoke Regional Airport.
That's where (Mick-Ale Sha-rove) Machail Sharov was found yesterday.
He was preparing to catch a flight to Georgia.
Sharov, who's been described as an experienced hiker, says he took a wrong turn on the Appalachian Trail.
His parents and search parties from all over the area were scouting the woods, but Sharov's goal was to get back to the Army on time.
(///// SOT /////)
[IN Q=I know I have]
((MICHAEL SHAROV/HIKER: I KNOW I HAVE TO BE IN COLUMBUS, GEORGIA TONIGHT SO I JUST WENT UP HERE AS FAST AS I COULD. HOW DID YOU GET HERE? I WALKED. YOU WALKED TO THE AIRPORT? YEAH. WHY DIDN'T YOU CALL YOUR PARENTS? I'M NOT SURE. I TRIED TO FIND A PHONE BUT THERE WEREN'T TOO MANY PHONES ALONG THE HIGHWAY. I DIDN'T SEE ANY. I'M SORRY.))
[OUT Q=I'm Sorry.]
Sharov flew back to Georgia last night.
Search and rescue workers were relieved to hear Sharov was safe and sound.
Law enforcement teams and about 70 search and rescue workers from three states scoured the mountains looking for Sharov (Shuh-ROVE).
They spent 24 hours roaming four counties.
The news that Sharov turned up safe after his four-day, 35-mile hike brought searchers more relief than resentment.
(///// SOT /////)
[SOT 15:20:18 - :31]
[IN Q=We had a]
((JOHN O'SHEA/RESCUE WORKER: WE HAD A SUCCESSFUL CONCLUSION ... WOULD HAVE BEEN MORE EXCITING IF WE DROVE HIM OUT OF THE WOODS ON AN ATV ... BUT WE FOUND HIM.))
[SUPER=01-John O'Shea/Rescue Worker;]
[OUT Q=we found him.]
Authorities have no estimates on the cost of the search as of yet.
They say Sharov can't really be held accountable because he did NOT know all the panic he caused.
A swimmer died from a shark attack just off the coast of Florida.
But he wasn't swimming out in the open water.
The attack occurred near St. Petersburg where sharks are rarely, if ever, seen.
Doug Meehan has the story.
(///// SOT /////)
[SUPER=03-St. Petersburg, FL; :04]
[SUPER=01-Edward Kabinski/Victim's Son; :13]
[SUPER=01-Yoli Pate/Witness; :34]
[SUPER=01-Doug Meehan/Reporting; :53]
[OUT Q=for CBS News I'M, Doug Meehan.]
Admirers of Princess Diana are keeping her memory alive today, the third anniversary of her death.
Hundreds of bouquets, stuffed toys, and photographs are part of a shrine in front of Kensington Palace.
Despite the stream of visitors this week, the national grief has subsided since 19-97, when Diana died at the age of 36 in a car crash..
(///// SOT /////)
[IN Q=Three years ago...]
((THREE YEARS AGO, YES, THERE WAS A BIG GRIEF AND IT WAS TERRIBLE MOMENT. UNFORTUNATELY, NOW, I THINK IT'S BECOMING MORE A THING FOR THE TOURISTS RATHER THAN FOR THE BRITISH. WE NEED TO JUST MOVE ON.))
[OUT Q=just move on.]
Meanwhile, a palace spokesman says the royal family is spending a private day "remembering and praying".
Controversy still clouds the accident that killed Diana and her companion, Dodi Al Fayed.
Dodi's father says he's suing U-S officials for allegedly covering up what HE calls a murder.
[GRAPHIC=R & B Communications]
Internet access in the Roanoke Valley may soon be 40 times faster.
R and B Communications announced plans yesterday morning to launch a digital subscriber line known as Rappid D-S-L.
The service will provide small businesses and home consumers a fast connection to the internet.
(///// SOT /////)
[IN Q=it basically]
((ALLEN LAYMAN/PRES. R&B COMMUNICATIONS: IT'S BASICALLY TURNS THE TELEPHONE COPPER WIRE THAT'S OUT THERE TODAY THAT TELEPHONE COMPANY'S USE INTO A HUGE SPEED INTERNET SERVICE.))
[SUPER=01-Allen Layman/R & B Communications President]
[OUT Q=internet service.]
D-S-L is already available to folks in Troutville, Cloverdale, and Daleville and will be available for the rest of Roanoke Valley in September.
((BOB GOODLATTE: CUSTOMERS NOW IF THEY LIVE IN THE PRINCIPAL AREAS WILL HAVE A COMPETITIVE ALTERNATIVE AND I THINK COMPETITION IS ALWAYS WITH THE EXPANSION FOR CONSUMERS.))
The communications company also announced plans to construct a new 4- and- a-half- million dollar facility.
The new building with be located next to their current site and will bring 1-hundred new jobs to the area.
When former Christiansburg Attorney Keith Neely goes back to court in custody next month he hopes he won't have to go by way of Oklahoma.
Neely's serving time in Morgantown, West Virginia, for drug trafficking.
The last time federal marshals brought him to Roanoke, his attorney says it took two months to get him back to Morgantown and they billed Neely for the trip.
(///// SOT /////)
[IN Q=I thought it]
((I THOUGHT IT COULD BE DONE A LITTLE BIT CHEAPER THAN IT WAS BY FLYING AN AIRPLANE ALL OVER THE UNITED STATES, BECAUSE HE DIDN'T GO DIRECTLY TO MORGANTOWN WHEN THE CASE WAS OVER IN ROANOKE. HE WAS FLOWN ALL OVER IN DIFFERENT PLACES.))
[SUPER=01-Max Jenkins/Neely's Attorney]
[OUT Q=different places.]
The 16-hundred dollar trip took Neely from Roanoke to Lexington to Lewisburg, West Virginia-- where marshals put him on the airlift for Oklahoma City.
He spent six weeks in Oklahoma, before they shipped him to Lewisburg, Pennsylvania... and only then drove him to Morgantown.
Neely is suing the F-B-I for access to his files, hoping to find something that'll prove he deserves a new tri
al. The next hearing is set for September 13th.[Senate-Race]
George Allen is leading the Senate race by 8 points according to a new poll.
At a campaign stop yesterday in Charlottesville, Chuck Robb attributed his underdog status to the fact that Allen had been governor more recently -- which he considers a higher profile position in the eyes of Virginia voters.
[IN Q=I'm not]
((SEN. CHUCK ROBB/(D) U.S. SENATE CANDIDATE: I'M NOT INTIMIDATED. I HAVEN'T BEEN INTIMIDATED FROM THE BEGINNING. BUT, HAVING SAID THAT, I'VE ACKNOWLEDGED FROM THE VERY OUTSET THAT THIS WAS GOING TO BE A TOUGH CAMPAIGN. I TAKE NOTHING FOR GRANTED. I'M NOT TAKING ANYTHING FOR GRANTED NOW. I'M GOING TO FIGHT HARD. MY MESSAGE IS JUST BEGINNING TO REACH THE PUBLIC CONSCIOUSNESS, AND IT WILL TAKE SOME TIME.))
[SUPER=201-Sen. Chuck Robb/(D) U. S. Senate Candidate; ]
[OUT Q=some time.]
A spokesman for Allen says his campaign is encouraged by the poll.
But Press Secretary Tim Murtaugh says Robb's held statewide office for two decades in Virginia, and by now, voters should be familiar with him.
The Washington Post poll shows Robb leading only in southwest and northern Virginia.
A former Roanoke City School Board member and longtime funeral home director has died.
Marilyn Curtis was 74.
Curtis was active in the Roanoke PTA before she joined the School Board in 1988. She served nine years.
Curtis was also well- known as a principal in the Hamlar-Curtis Funeral Home. She was the first female President of the Virginia Morticians Association, and held leadership positions in a long list of business, civic and community groups.
Authorities say it's a "miracle" no one was killed in a police chase on a Los Angeles freeway.
[SUPER=03-Los Angeles, CA;]
Six people were injured, though, including the driver of the car police were chasing.
Aurthorities say the chase started last night after they heard reports of shots fired.
A car speeding away from police in the WRONG lane of the freeway reached speeds up to 80- miles- per- hour.
After several close calls, the car finally crashed head-on into another vehicle, and then cart-wheeled into the center divider.
Police suspect the car was stolen.
Parking at Virginia Tech football games may be a little harder to come by following Sunday's storms.
The western part of Lot Nine was damaged by the torrential rain and fans trying to leave the game.
That lot will be closed for the rest of the season.
The eastern half of the lot will stay open and can fit 400 cars on a first-come first served basis.
Tech officials encourage "lot nine pass-holders" to use the B-lot on Price's Fork Road-- that lot is paved.