There's snow in the hills, and ice to our south. What's ahead for us as Christmas nears?
Tonight on News 7, we'll see how the weather is creating problems across much of the country.
We are no longer under a winter storm warning-- But some snowfall will continue for several more hours.
For most of us precipitation will end before midnight.
Details coming up.
For the first time since the octuplets were born in Houston their father is talking to the media.
And a 13 year old Pittsylvania County girl says her mom and dad have given her life three times.
Stay tuned, News 7 at 5 is next.
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A major rescue effort at a deadly bus accident ... one of many weather-related incidents on this Christmas Eve.
Good afternoon, I'm Tonya Flory. Jean has the day off.
We'll have the latest on travel conditions shortly, but first, let's get you up to date on weather conditions in the region.
Andrew Freiden is in our weather center.
[Weather pro GFX]
The winter storm that made driving so treacherous yesterday is looking a little tamer today.
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Scott Goldberg has been checking the roads all over Southwest Virginia today and is back in Roanoke tonight.
( ad lib)
[SUPER=03-Clifton Forge; :00]
[SUPER=07-Wanda Crawford; :08]
[SUPER=07-Helen Newland; :24]
[SUPER=01-Howard Tingler/Va. Dept. of Transportation; :42]
[OUT Q=clean it up.]
When they woke up in Clifton Forge they saw -- for the first time this month -- a landscape that actually LOOKED like December.
[IN Q=it's a beautiful]
((WANDA: IT'S A BEAUTIFUL DAY. IT'S COLD. IT'S LIKE YOU WANT TO PLAY IN THE SNOW (LAUGHS).))
((natsound: kid wiping car window))
They winter storm that dumped ice yesterday turned kinder and gentler today.
Just enough snow fell to lift the town's spirits.
[IN Q=we got]
((HELEN: WE GOT REAL GOOD CUSTOMERS. DON'T HAVE ANY GRUMPY CUSTOMERS. THE DON'T WANT A LUMP OF COAL.))
[OUT Q=OF COAL]
((natsound: vdot trucks))
Of course, one person's pretty holiday is someone else's dirty job.
V-DOT road crews are working this Christmas...
Ready to clear the roads if the weather gets worse.
[IN Q=i really never]
((HAROLD: I REALLY NEVER LIKE TO SEE THE SNOW. I KNOW A LOT OF PEOPLE LIKE TO SEE IT FOR CHRISTMAS. BUT THEY DON'T HAVE TO CLEAN IT UP.))
[OUT Q=CLEAN IT UP]
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[Double Boxes=Tonya & Scott/Microwave][5-Amherst-Wreck]
State police say a truck driver may have been going too quickly for conditions when the rig flipped over and crushed a pickup truck carrying five people.
It happened around 11:30 on Route 60 about six miles east of Amherst. Police say the trucker was rounding a curve when he lost control.
Rescue crews spent forty- five minutes cutting the vehicle apart to free all five people inside.
No one was seriously hurt. Seat belts are credited for saving their lives.
The nasty weather may be responsible for a deadly tour bus accident outside New York City today.
Eight people are already confirmed dead.
22 people were heading for the casinos when their bus flipped several times as it left the expressway in New Jersey and went down an embankment.
A major effort to rescue survivors took hours.
The area received a couple of inches of snow overnight, but there is no word if that played a direct role in the deadly accident.
Some Virginia highways have been tough going today, thanks to very icy conditions.
In eastern Virginia, tree limbs fractured and fell under the weight of the ice storm this morning.
Interstate 64 was closed between Newport News and Williamsburg where freezing rain and ice covered the highway.
It re-opened later in the day, but is limited to one lane in
Large-scale power outages are the story in the Richmond area.
That means a kerosene-heated Christmas for the families who will have heat at all.
[IN Q=Power went]
((TONY TALBOTT/RICHMOND RESIDENT: POWER WENT OUT ABOUT 5:30, TRANSFORMER'S DOWN. TREES-- THEY SAY IT'S GONNA BE OUT FOR A GOOD WHILE. BORROWING A KEROSENE HEATER. GOT A CAMPING STOVE, SO-- Merry Christmas? YEAH MERRY CHRISTMAS.))
[SUPER=01-Tony Talbott/Richmond Resident;]
[OUT Q=Yeah, Merry Christmas.]
Richmond International Airport is operating only essential services on a backup generator... with NO flights headed in or out anytime soon.
[SUPER=03-Dallas, TX; ]
Many other airports are struggling to stay open.
Some of the holiday travelers who were stranded at the Dallas-Fort Worth airport all night are getting to their destinations, but not all.
American Airlines has resumed some of its departures this afternoon, but it's still postponing others.
Only two-thirds of the flights are running on this -- one of the busiest travel days of the year.
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Next on News 7, police are on the lookout for a convicted child molestor, for reasons that go beyond the obvious.
And if you haven't had enough of Santa yet, check this out. We'll take you to a home where Saint Nick rules.
And on Healthcheck ... do women who wait to have their first child live healthier lives?.
Stay with us, there's more News 7 to come.
Bedford County authorities are searching for a convicted child molester who may now be endangering his own son.
[SUPER=04-Courtesy: Bedford Co.;]
Roger Lee Crouch failed to show up for his sentencing on December 16th..
police believe he is now on the run with his wife Linda and 20- month- old son Travis.
Travis suffers from a congenital brain deformity and needs continuous medical care.
[Take Pinnacle Page]
They're driving a blue Ford sedan with Virginia tags Y-Y-U- 6234.
Anyone with information can call the sheriff's department at 1- 877- 216- 4800.
A Martinsville teen is recovering today in a North Carolina hospital after a pipe bomb explosed yesterday in his hands.
18-year old Brushawn Sniblett suffered injuries to his hands and face and underwent some reconstructive surgery last night.
Sniblett was in the back seat of a car when the homemade bomb exploded.
There were two other people in the vehicle at the time-- but they were not injured.
One of them drove the car to the Martinsville Hospital.
Police believe Sniblett ignited the bomb and planned to throw it out the window of the car when it exploded in his hands.
No charges have been filed so far.
The malls are alive with the sound of business on this Christmas Eve.
Lots of people in the Roanoke Valley are ignoring the bad weather and getting that last-minute shopping done.
Retailers throughout the area say they've seen a steady stream of customers.
Most merchants will be closing in less than an hour, although dozens of convenience stores will remain open tonight and tomorrow.
Santa may be coming to town in just a few hours, but he may choose to stay a while at a California home.
Jenifer Sabih introduces us to a woman who has decorated her home with 800 Santa souvenirs.
[SUPER=03-Alhambra, CA; :00]
[SUPER=01-Mary Cassidy/Claus Collector; :13]
[SUPER=01-Jennifer Sabih/Alhambra, CA; 1:05]
[SUPER=01-Emmet Cassidy/Husband; 1:33]
[OUT Q="...CBS News."]
((FROM THE OUTSIDE YOU'D NEVER KNOW IT.BUT A RING OF THE DOORBELL AT THIS
IS YOUR FIRST CLUE THAT MARY CASSIDY IS NO CASUAL CHRISTMAS DECORATOR
SOT: (Mary Cassidy Santa Collector) "In the month of November we have no
social engagements, we stay home and unwrap Santa clauses, it's very
IN DECEMBER MARY DECKS HER HOUSE WITH CROWDS OF CLAUSE.800 AT HER LAST
SOT: (Mary Cassidy) "This is one of my favorites, but not my favorite."
THERE'S SANTA SURFING, SANTA BLOWIN SAX, SANTA STUFFED INTO A CHAIR.
SANTA SLEEPING, SANTA SCREAMING, SANTA SWINGING FROM CHANDELIERS.
SOT: "That's my favorite."
SANTA IN A BOX, IN A BOOK, ON A CLOCK, IN A KISS. AT MARY'S YOU CAN
WALK ON SANTA, COOK WITH SANTA, SING ALONG WITH SANTA.
NAT MUSICAL ONES TAPE
AND SOAP UP WITH HIM AS WELL.
SOT:" Here's a soap dispenser."
IF IT ALL SEEMS SOME WHAT SANTA CLAUS-TROPHOBIC HERE, NOT SO FOR MARY
WHO CAN TELL YOU CLEARLY WHY SHE LOVES SANTA SO.
SOT: " Because they're fun they're jolly they remind you of your
JUST TO SET UP ANTA'S REQUIRES THE INDUSTRY OF ELVES. IN MARY'S HOUSE
THE ENTIRE MONTH OF NOVEMBER IS DEVOTED TO GETTING 800 SANTAS OUT OF
STORAGE AND SETTING THEM UP
NAT EMMTE : "Well"
Track: THAT'S EMMET MARY'S HUSBAND. WHO, IF YOU LOOK CLOSE, SEEMS TO
BEAR AN UNCANNY RESEMBLANCE TO OLD ST. NICK. PERHAPS FROM LIVING IN
SUCH CLOSE QUARTERS WITH CLAUSES FOR TWO MONTHS EVERY YEAR FOR THE PAST
SOT:" No no never get sick of Santa Clause."
HIS WIFE'S COLLECTION MAY CROWD THE PLACE A BIT.BUT EMMET SAYS, THERE
ARE PLUSES.AT LEAST HIS WIFE IS EASY TO BUY FOR.))
Coming up next, more ice in the Carolinas ... how about here? Andrew has the latest.
And those three balloonists are now over the Pacific, but new dangers could lie ahead. That's next, when we return.
They're past the half-way mark .. three balloonists hoping to complete an around-the-world trip.
American Steve Fossett and his two crewmates crossed over Japan earlier today.
Now they're over the Pacific ocean, with a lot of miles to cover before they're
back over land again.
If all goes well, the crew members are hoping to be over North America -- above either the northwestern United States or Canada -- by late tomorrow.
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[health music under]
The Hokies and Cavs both have some big Christmas wishes. Roy Stanley is still ahead with sports.
Next on health check --
is rural life TOO laid back for your health.
And a Pittsylvania County teenager is celebrating Christmas this year thanks to her family giving her a life saving gift.
[SOT 56:51-:57 bite from 6:00 vo/b]
[IN Q=They're great.]
((STEPHANIE NEAL: (LOOKING, LAUGH) THEY'RE GREAT, THEY'RE GREAT.))
An incredible story tonight about a Pittsylvania County girl who has undergone two kidney transplants in two years.
Each time Stephanie Neal needed a transplant, one of her parents stepped up to be the organ donor.
Christy Hubley has this special story of family bonding.
[IN Q=All of the presents]
[SUPER=03-Pittsylvania Co.; :00]
[SUPER=07-Debra Neal; 18]
[SUPER=07-Stephanie Neal; :40]
[SUPER=07-Mike Neal; 1:09]
[OUT Q=News 7, Pittsylvania County.]
(( All of the presents underneath the Neal family Christmas tree can't compare to the gifts Stephanie Neal has received from her parents.
When she needed a kidney transplant two years ago, her father donated one of his.
And last summer, when that kidney failed, her mother didn't think twice about giving up one of her organs.
[IN Q=Anything to keep her]
((DEBRA NEAL: ANYTHING TO KEEP HER OFF OF DIALYSIS. IT DIDN'T MATTER TO ME THEY COULD USE BOTH KIDNEYS. IT DIDN NOT MATTER TO ME. I DID NOT WANT HER TO GO THROUGH DIALYSIS.))
[OUT Q=go through dialysis.]
Stephanie is doing well.
[NATS in the kitchen]
She's helping Mom get ready for holiday parties...and thanking God she's not too ill to enjoy the festivities.
[IN Q=I'm glad I don't have]
((STEPHANIE NEAL: I'M GLAD I DON'T HAVE TO BE ON ANTIBIOTICS. YOU KNOW THERE WAS MANY CHRISTMASES WHERE I'D HAVE I-V ANTIBIOTICS AND BE SICK AND YOU KNOW DIDN'T FEEL LIKE CELEBRATING.))
[OUT Q=feel like celebrating.]
Despite all of her surgeries, Stephanie is like any other 13-year old.
She loves to play with her dog Rugsby and enjoys writing poetry.
[IN Q=Be thankful for what you]
((BE THANKFUL FOR WHAT YOU HAVE BEEN GIVEN. BE THANKFUL FOR THE LIFE THAT YOU ARE LIVING.))
[OUT Q=you are living.]
The Neals are thankful that Stephanie is bouncing back from her most recent transplant.
Everyone here is taking things one day at a time.
[IN Q=Down the road if]
((MIKE NEAL: DOWN THE ROAD IF SOMETHING ELSE HAPPENS WITH THE KIDNEY SHE'S GOT NOW, I DON'T KNOW WHAT WE'RE GOING TO DO. YOU KNOW UNLESS SOMEBODY ELSE IN THE FAMILY CAN DONATE ONE OR ELSE YOU HAVE TO GET ON A LOST AND WAIT FOR A DONOR.))
[OUT Q=wait for a donor.]
For now, the Neals are concentrating on Stephanie's recovery and praying for many more healthy Christmases.
Christy Hubley, News 7, Pittsylvania County.))
The father of the octuplets born earlier this week in Houston has taken a few moments away from his new family to speak to reporters.
I-K Louis (u-BOG-gee) says he is still stunned, but focusing his attention on his wife and eight babies.
[SOT tc 13:07:51]
[IN Q=The main]
((IYKE LOUIS UBOGI/FATHER: THE MAIN PREOCCUPATION RIGHT NOW IS THE HEALTH AND WELL-BEING OF MY KIDS AND MY WIFE. WHEN THEY'RE OUT OF THE WOODS, OTHER THINGS WILL TAKE PLACE.))
[SUPER=01-Iyke Louis Ubogi/Father]
[OUT Q=take place]
According to the team of doctors, seven of the eight babies are making progress and could be taken off ventilators soon.
The smallest baby will need assistance with her breathing for at least the next several weeks.
All are still in critical condition.
A new study finds that mothers who give birth to their first child later in life ... tend to live longer than those who start families early
[07NA - 07:26:42]
Researchers looked at old British records and found that women who lived well into their 80's and 90's had on average one or two children--
And they didn't start having their kids until their late 20's or older.
The authors of the study say women may be paying a physical price ... for giving birth and raising children at a young age.
People who live in the countryside may be too laid back for comfort.
[07NA - 07:26:42]
According to a survey by the Centers for Disease Control...
nearly 37-percent of rural Americans admitted they did not do any healthy physical activity outside of their jobs.
That number was much lower for their big-city counterparts.
Exercise has been shown to reduce the risk of heart disease and other
Thank You Tonya and good afternoon everybody welcome to the 2 minute ticker.
Virginia Tech and Virginia are gearing up for the bowl season.
[GRAPHIC=Music City Bowl]
The Hokies will meet Alabama December 29-th in the Music City Bowl in Nashville.
While Virginia has a New Years Eve date with Georgia in the Peach Bowl.
and both teams have big wishes for the Holiday season.
[IN Q="My only...]
[SUPER=01-Frank Beamer/Virginia Tech Head Coach; :00]
[SUPER=01-Adrian Burnim/Virginia Defensive Back; :14]
[SUPER=01-Derek Smith/Virginia Tech Tackle; :30]
[SUPER=01-Aaron Brooks/Virginia Quarterback; :36]
[SUPER=01-Keon Carpenter/Virginia Tech Defensive Back; :52]
[SUPER=01-Wali Rainer/Virginia Linebacker; 1:02]
[SUPER=01-Loren Johnson/Virginia Tech Defensive Back; 1:10]
[OUT Q=.....play our hardest."]
The six month dispute between the N-B-A owners and players is about to come to an end one way or the other.
N-B-A commissioner David Stern has met with union leader Billy Hunter in Los Angles.
This meeting took place after Stern set a January seventh deadline for canceling the season. An N-B-A spokesman said no progress was made in the meeting.
The dispute centers on players and owners trying to decide how to divide 2 billion dollars in annual revenue.
Today is the 177-th day of the shutdown. The last round of talks took place December 12-th.
Virginia Tech beats Coastal Carolina at the Cassell more on that at six. Tonya will be back in a moment.
Lots of folks are in the air, on their way home this Christmas.
So are some other critters.
Near Indianapolis, Indiana, four trumpeter swans completed their annual migration from Canada.
The journey took two weeks.
The swans flew the entire way behind a man flying a small plane to help guide them home.
This was one flight that the weather couldn't cancel.