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Trials have been scheduled for the father of a murdered Evansdale girl.
Thirty-six-year-old Daniel Morrissey is awaiting trials for misdemeanor domestic assault and drug charges. They’re unrelated to the disappearance of his daughter, Lyric Cook, who disappeared with her cousin Elizabeth Collins in July of 2012.
The girls’ bodies were found December 5th, 2012 in a wildlife area in Bremer County.
Morrissey’s trials have been delayed several times but have now been scheduled for July 8th in Davenport.
He remains in custody at the Black Hawk County Jail.
It’s a routine surgery that is performed a million times a year in the U.S.
But now gallbladder surgery is being performed at a higher level with less complications and less scaring right here in Des Moines.
Tim Mullen said when he needed his gallbladder removed he thought that meant an in-depth procedure.
“I just assumed the whole time I would have the three holes like everyone told me about so when I heard there was an option I was all for it,” says Tim Mullen of Bondurant.
That option was a new technique called single site surgery, recommended by his Doctor Jeff Maire at Mercy Medical Center.
The new technique is a less invasive option to under-go the same procedure.
“A single site is where we use one incision to remove the gallbladder, and we use several ports through that which takes away all of those other incisions,” says Dr. Maire.
The surgeon makes that incision in the patients belly button and uses a port that allows robotic tools to go in and out.
The doctor sits feet away and performs the entire operation from a console, which Doctor Maire says is a win-win.
“Having the doctor be comfortable is very important for fatigue for the surgeon and when we`re up doing long procedures that turn out to be difficult it`s defiantly a benefit to have the robot there, are visualization is excellent and we can do a lot safer procedures that way,” says Dr. Maire.
For Mullen it was an easy decision that left him with little side-effects.
“After the procedure there was tenderness to the incision a little bit but the effects of the surgery were immediately noticed. I didn`t have any more pain when I ate, I was able to return to my normal diet, I had zero issues with it. I felt immediately better after having the surgery,” says Mullen.
There is minimal scarring, minimal pain and very low blood loss, most patients leave the day of and are able to go home.
The surgery is relatively new, and has only been at Mercy Medical Center since the first of the year, but has quickly become the fastest growing procedure at the hospital.
Mullen says less than a week after surgery he was back to work and back to his normal routine.
“It`s one of the best things I’ve ever done, I should have done it two years ago actually,” says Mullen.
Doctor Maire says the robotic option has provided a safer alternative to a routine procedure for everyone involved.
“It is a sign of the times, it`s technology, it`s advancement in procedures and I think that`s all for the betterment of the patient,” says Dr. Maire.
Mercy Medical Center performed over 500 robotic procedures last fiscal year.
Funeral services are set for a toddler who drowned at a state park near Jefferson this week.
Three-year-old Ransom Cummings’ funeral will be Sunday at 5:00 p.m. at the dwelling place in Jefferson. The family will hold a visitation after the service and a burial will be held privately.
Ransom died Tuesday after he wandered away from his mother at Spring Lake Park.
A group searched for the boy for a half hour before finding him in five feet of water near the end of a dock.
There will be no new trial for a northern Iowa man who shot and wounded his ex-wife, their two-year son and his ex-wife’s boyfriend eight years ago.
The Iowa Court of Appeals rejected an appeal by Richard Guidry. Guidry was convicted in 2006 on two counts of attempted murder.
The shooting happened on a county road near Pocahontas.
Police say Guidry used a 12-guage shotgun to shoot Holly Newhouse-Guidry in the arm, two-year old Tristan Guidry in the face, and Scot Blasey in the head.
They all survived, but Blasey was left with brain damage and unable to walk.
In his appeal, Richard Guidry argued he had ineffective counsel from his lawyer.
Earlier today, isolated, slow moving thunderstorms have dropped 4.5″ of rain this morning in Afton (Union County) as well as nickel size hail. The heavy rains created flash flooding, including filling up five foot deep ditches with rain and hail, and had water three feet deep flowing over roads just west of Afton.
80s are in the forecast through the end of the week. There will be chances for isolated storms late in the day or early morning. Very typical of summer storms that bubble up in the late-day hours.
The weekend will be warm and humid. A chance for strong or even severe storms will target the area Sunday.
The trial of a northwest Iowa man charged with killing his mother and kidnapping a young woman has been moved because of pre-trial publicity.
A change of venue request was granted Tuesday by a district judge, moving 21-year-old Kirk Levin’s trial to Fort Dodge in Webster County.
Levin is accused of killing his mother, 45-year-old Marilyn Schmitt, by stabbing and choking her at her home in rural Early on January 3rd. Schmitt’s body was discovered during an investigation into the reported kidnapping of a 21-year-old woman who was able to free herself from Levin.
Levin is charged with first degree murder and third degree kidnapping. His trial is scheduled to begin June 3rd.
The second largest jackpot in Powerball history will be up for grabs this weekend.
There was no Powerball winner in Wednesday night’s drawing. The jackpot was $360 million and has already jumped to an estimated $550 million. As sales heat up before Saturday’s drawing, the jackpot could climb even higher.
The biggest jackpot ever totaled more than $587 million.
The winning numbers in Wednesday night’s drawing were 2-11-26-34-41, with Powerball 32.
Two tickets did win $2 million, but those were not purchased in Iowa.
Isolated storms this morning south of I-80 will drop some decent amounts of rain in small areas. Chariton reported .7″ of rain so far while Ottumwa measured only .11″ this morning. Most of the rest of the state will remain dry.
80s are in the forecast through the end of the week. There will be chances for isolated storms late in the day or early morning. Very typical of summer storms that bubble up in the late-day hours.
The weekend will be warm and humid. A better chance for severe storms will hit the area by Sunday.
Good Morning! Still fighting off the Allergies this morning with coughing and a runny nose. I’m doing what the Dr said and still haven’t seen a lot of relief. I’m wondering if there’s something else going on. Our dry weather and the bloom of the trees make for a potent combo.
The story of an Urbandale teen targeted with a racist pamphlet makes you wonder how much progress we’ve really made where race is concerned. Out and out racism is largely gone from our laws and public policy, and Iowa seems to be a progressive state where race is concerned. That said, I wonder how much racism still bubbles under the surface. We are not the most diverse state. We have a lot of people who may have grown up in an all white or largely white community and so are not used to interacting with someone of another race. So here’s my question: To what extent do you think Iowans hold racist attitudes, even if they don’t exhibit them outwardly? I’ll be interested in the answer.
I didn’t buy a ticket for this one but that will change before Wednesday. $475 Million is a lot of money. I’ll open the floor for any suggestions on how to spend it… after I buy a new set of irons.
Looks like all of the people ready to pounce on Tiger Woods saying he was “lying” when he said he heard a Marshal give him the all clear before he hit last Saturday and disturbed Sergio Garcia…you owe the man an apology. The marshal in question came forward and said he did in fact say that to Tiger. The was no sinister intent to Tiger pulling a club as Sergio hit so as to get a reaction from the crowd. Two great articles on this story from Golf Channel. One sorts out the controversy, and the other talks about Sergio Garcia and his Victim’s mentality. I agree.
Speaking of golf I took the boys for their first ever trip to a real golf course yesterday. We’ve gone to a driving range before and hit balls but I wasn’t sure if they were ready to go with me and ride along for none holes. I confess to being slightly anxious about their golf future. I want them to play…selfishly because I want to be able to spend that kind of time with them. Golf has been a great connector for my Dad and I. I think it’s a game kids should learn because it’s one of a handful of sports you can play all your life. It teaches social skills. As a kid I got my first lessons in meeting and socializing with adults when I would go out to a golf course and play as a single. The game has helped me germinate and sustain friendships that I might not otherwise have. I love the game of golf and naturally because I’ve had a great experience I hope they would want to play as well.
But, I don’t want to be the Dad who pushes his kids. I feel like I’m just asking them to hate golf if I push too hard…so I am trying to take some good advice and letting my kids do what they want where golf is concerned. I broke that rule a bit Wednesday. I took JT with us, even though he said he didn’t want to go. I thought he would have a good time and so I asked him to try this new experience.
It went well. I never asked either boy to hit the ball, though they both carried their club around and hit a few times. I asked for their help and gently tried to teach some basic rules ad etiquette. They both told me they had a great time…I told them I was really glad they came and that I was proud of them for trying something new. When I asked what the best part of the outing was the answer came without hesitation: Cheese Puffs and Gatorade for a snack! They are still four.
Your opinions on these or other topics are always welcome. Please feel free!
Have a great day!
Central College is being celebrated as one of the most ‘green’ colleges in the nation.
College senior Michelle Stewart found focus at Central College in Pella, “I realized that I didn’t know a lot about sustainability; I was really passionate about it and I had the drive but I really didn’t have a focus.”
The Princeton Review guide picked Central as one of 322 green colleges. The rating looks at a variety of factors from classes to buildings.
The Roe Center on the Central campus has a platinum LEED rating. It has a green roof and a radiant floor heating/cooling system among other features.
Central also has a vegetable garden on the west side of campus.
The green rating also considered Central’s curriculum including a minor in sustainability.
“The idea is that students with very deliberate ideas about careers whether it be accounting or education, or philosophy and religion or anything can still explore that interest in sustainability tack that on to a major and build that into that future career,“ professor of political science, Jim Zaffiro.
It’s Central’s first year on the list. Other Iowa colleges are making a repeat appearance on the Princeton review list including Iowa State University, the University of Iowa and University of Northern Iowa as well as Luther College and Maharishi University of Management.
The Story County Sheriff has been diagnosed with a Guillain-Barre syndrome according to a Story County Democrats email.
Sheriff Paul Fitzgerald was hospitalized in Ames last Wednesday with the disorder.
It’s an uncommon illness where a person’s immune system attacks the nerves. Weakness and tingling are often the first symptoms, but it could paralyze the whole body.
There is no word on the severity of Sheriff Fitzgerald’s symptoms.
The Story County Democrat email says Fitzgerald is being referred to Mayo Clinic. He is currently at Mary Greeley Hospital.
They say he would love to receive cards but is not feeling well enough for visits.
Although there is no cure, most people recover from the symptoms of Guillain-Barre syndrome.
(CNN) — Possible tornadoes ripped through north Texas on Wednesday night, killing at least six people and injuring more than 100 others, officials said.
The fatalities occurred when the storm struck a Habitat for Humanity neighborhood in the Granbury area, Hood County Sheriff Roger Deeds said. There were about 120 homes in the neighborhood and most of them were destroyed.
Fourteen people still missing and the death toll could rise, according to Deeds.
About 100 people were injured, said Matt Zavadsky, a spokesman for MedStar Mobile Healthcare.
‘The darkness doesn’t help’
Rescue workers searched for the missing and surveyed the damage in the early morning hours. But the full extent of the damage may not be realized until the sun comes up.
It may have been as many as three tornadoes that walloped the area, officials said.
A tornado may have touched down several times in Hood, Tarrant, Dallas and Parker counties, Zavadsky said.
“With these types of tornadoes, they touch down; they lift up; they touch down. They tend to hopscotch,” he said. “The darkness doesn’t help, but the crews on scene are doing a really good job to try and reach out to the folks who might be trapped or unable to get to a shelter or the triage area.”
There were reports of homes in Granbury being flattened with people inside, Hood County Judge Darrell Cockerham said.
In nearby Ellis County, a possible tornado knocked out power for many in the city of Ennis at about midnight, said Steve Howerton, city manager.
“Several buildings in the downtown historic district have been seriously damaged,” Howerton said.
Donna Martin, a worker at a local veteran’s organization, said some suffered injures.
“There are a lot of traumatic injuries,” Martin said. “My husband told me that a car was lifted in the air. It just came in and hit so fast”
City officials were sending school buses to affected neighborhoods to help with evacuations.
The National Weather Service warned that a mile-wide tornado reported by spotters had shifted its track and was moving “right at the city of Cleburne,” a community of about 15,000 people in north Texas.
“If you are in its path … take cover immediately to protect your life,” the weather service alert said.
Officials had not confirmed whether a tornado touched down in Dallas, but said the storm was capable of producing one.
(CNN) — New Orleans police said they arrested a suspect in the Mother’s Day shooting that left 19 people wounded this week.
In a post on its Facebook page, the police department identified the man taken into custody as Akein Scott, 19. It did not provide any more details on the arrest.
A SWAT team was used during the arrest Wednesday night in east New Orleans, CNN affiliate WDSU reported .
The shooting, during a festive Mother’s Day parade, renewed concerns about crime in the city.
It was the third holiday this year when guns have been fired into crowds, New Orleans Mayor Mitch Landrieu said.
A January 21 shooting near a Martin Luther King Day parade left five wounded. Four people were hurt in a February Mardi Gras attack, the New Orleans Times-Picayune reported.
Police identified the teen as a suspect Monday after footage of the shooting was released.
Images of the parade, released by police Monday, show a man standing at the outskirts of a packed parade route. A moment later, he charges toward the crowd.
The surveillance camera images show the panicked crowd scrambling for cover. The man runs away, leaving people and bicycles scattered on the ground behind him.
A $10,000 reward had been offered in the case.
More fantastic weather over central Iowa today. Highs in the middle 80s and lots of sunshine. There were a few isolated showers…but most of the rain did not hit the ground because we had 20 to 30 percent relative humidity.
One of our photojournalists Roger Reilly… caught this video of the rain falling from the clouds…but not making to the ground. It almost looked like there was a funnel cloud within the rain.
In Dallas, TX tonight tornado damage is being assessed. A huge twister slammed into the Dallas/Ft. Worth metroplex. Megan Salois’ parents live in that area. They had a tornado pass about one mile from their home in Granbury. It was ground-zero for damage and injuries. As of 10PM…there were two fatalities reported.
Here is video of the tornado as Megan’s mom and dad watched it spin about a mile down the road from their home. http://www.facebook.com/photo.php?v=10151430404851130&set=vb.708101129&type=2&theater
Iowa Tornado Record… 356 days and counting without a tornado warning in Iowa. I like this kind of record.
If pride had a portrait…a face and a setting…if it had a scene and a story to define it…it might be here.
Between the hills outside Newton, the name of F.L. Maytag—once synonymous with high technology—lives on in an old-world craft.
“It’s looking nice, really nice, this is going to be some great cheese,” says head cheese maker, Bob Wadzinski.
A cheese maker’s day begins early, as milk arrives from small area farms. Heated and skimmed of its curds…knowing hands guiding the way.
“You want that hands-on touch because cheese making is a science, but it’s also an art,” Wadzinski says.
Once hooped, the curds are allowed to settle…turning helps expel some of the air between them, but time does most of the work, so we wait.
E.H. Maytag took over the appliance company from his father, but he was different…a quiet man with a love of animals.
“At some point the family story is that one of his children was sick and the doctor recommended fresh milk,” says Fritz Maytag, grandson of E.H.
E.H. didn’t just buy milk, he bought a herd of Holstein cows, built the barns, created a prize-winning dairy…and E.H., says his family, found a separate peace, there.
“She said the reason he liked cows was that they didn’t ask him questions,” Fritz Maytag laughs.
Blue cheese begins the aging process pure white with a coat of salt…there is still some air inside the rounds and after months in the cold, humid air of these caves they begin their transformation.
“So wherever that airspace is,” Wadzinski says, ”you’re going to have a vein or a little pocket for this Roquefort mold to grow and develop.”
E.H. Maytag’s dairy was a hit, but his son, Fred took over with different ideas.
What he liked was cheese…specifically ”strong cheese.”
“He went to Iowa State,” Fritz recalls, ”and he said to them ‘I love strong cheese, I’ve got the dairy farm, I’ve got the whole thing set up, I’ve got the milk…can’t we somehow make a really interesting cheese?’ Iowa State said ‘how about blue cheese?’”
Maytag Blue Cheese became one of America’s first mail-order food items…wrapped in foil, delivered promptly. Fred Maytag’s baby won awards, wooed presidents and brought smiles.
“I was with my father quite a few times when someone came up and said ‘Gee, Maytag…are you related to that wonderful blue cheese?’ And if you said that my father just bloomed I mean he loved that.”
What head cheese maker, Bob Wadzinski, loves is something a little unconventional.
“It’s got a nice bloom on it,” he smiles. “A bloomy rind.”
Beautiful mold. The cheese is ready…ready for more proud hands…wrapped lovingly as every Maytag wedge has ever been. In today’s world, small scale assembly like this is a luxury and the Maytags know it.
“Most family businesses cannot afford to do that because the family needs to live on the business,” Maytag says.
Fritz Maytag has made his own fortune. He rescued the famous Anchor Steam beer in San Francisco in 1968 and started the microbrewing revolution. His beer science connected back to the dairy.
“Stainless steel, sanitation, temperature control, microbiology…it’s the same thing!”
Four generations of men, each leaving his indelible, individual mark. Connected by their love of innovation, by the product which bears their name and by the pride coursing through all those associated with it.
“It’s amazing. If my father could see it? (laugh) It’s amazing.”
It’s more than that…Maytag Blue Cheese is an Iowa Icon.
I am not complaining, but where did Spring go? Did we even technically have one? Not in my mind- it went from snow to 90′s in practically a day! But now that it is finally nice, I’m ready.
To prove just how ready I was for the weather, I decided to start off the new season with a run. That was Monday- and I am still sore. (And by run, I mean a walk/jog for less than 2 miles.) But I had just bought new running shoes, so I had to get out there. (Take that people who laughed at me when I bragged about my new shoes- see? I run…)
While running, I got to thinking about goal setting. Every time the weather gets nice “becoming a runner” seems to be my goal. It’s a small goal, I know. But after doing a follow-up story on Mark Stiles and his family, I realized that even the tiny goals can make a huge difference.
About a year ago, Mark went in for a “routine” back surgery. He was a football player in high school, and still had some back pain because of that. It seemed like an easy fix, but there were complications. Now, months later, Mark still can’t walk. In fact, he can barely move. I first met mark a few months back, when he was still in the hospital. Now that he’s home with his family, I met up with him again. I noticed the differences right way. He was moving his upper body a little more- he could actually lift his arms shoulder-height. And he could stand up from his wheelchair. But that’s not what I was most affected by. I was most affected by Marks and Jody themselves. They were so honest with me about their journey- they never said it was an easy one. But they are so positive- so grateful for Mark’s improvements. They celebrate each small step towards getting back to normal, instead of focusing on the fact that they have to make those steps in the first place.
I naturally was curious about what they thought of the surgery. In what I sometimes feel is a “sue-happy” country, my mind automatically took me to that place. But theirs never did. They said they never really got a straight answer about what exactly went wrong, but that’s as far as they dug. They are instead focusing on moving forward- getting better.
Mark’s goals seem so small- raise your hand, stand up, take a step. But really, they are huge. It’s something I will now always keep in mind, thanks to this inspirational family.
That story aired last night- take a look by clicking here.
And HERE is the original story I did with the family awhile back.
Call it the “scenic route” from the Atlantic to the Pacific- four off duty Coast Guard members are using their leave time to drive a golf cart from California to Virginia in 28 days. They’re covering more than 3, 900 miles, at a top speed of 25 miles an hour.
Getting there in the golf cart is just one of their goals. They’ve also set out to meet as many veterans along the way as possible. Wednesday, their pit-stop was at the VA Hospital in Des Moines.
“I am from the era of Vietnam, that is a lost era. But yet this brings out all groups,” said Veteran Daniel R. Stanley, “These guys are actually active duty guys doing this on their own time and taking their leave that they could be with family or something else and doing this checking out the United States and seeing me, you know? So it’s cool.”
“We hear some funny stories and some sad stories. We want to hear all the stories. And let them know that the active duty guys and gals out there, we`re still caring about them and they`re our greatest generation and they’re not forgotten,” said Ray Rehberg with the United States Coast Guard, and part of “Carting for a Cause.”
They started on April 29th and plan to end on May 26th. They only have 28 days to do it since they are using their leave time. The next stop is Davenport.
For more information on their route, or how you can help them reach their goal of a $50,000 donation visit the Wounded Warrior Project website.
Cyclists gathered in downtown Des Moines on Wednesday night to honor fellow riders who have been injured or killed.
The annual Ride of Silence is part of Bike to Work Week.
The event began with a reading of the names of those bicyclists who were hit by cars in 2012. It was followed by a slow ride through the city.
Organizers hope the event reminds drivers to share the roads with cyclists.
As a black student in the predominantly white Urbandale Middle School, 14-year-old Donte Johnson says he’s seen his fair share of racial harassment. But never anything like this.
Another student left a KKK membership application on his locker. Donte’s mother complained to the principal, but says he sort of blew her off.
“He was like ‘they listen to it in the music and it’s on TV and comedians joke about it’ but that doesn’t make it okay,” says Tara Patterson
The superintendent says the student responsible was disciplined, but because of privacy laws the district can’t say what that discipline included.