A 9-year-old girl is lucky to be alive after she was rescued by firefighters.

The girl was home alone in Orange City, Florida, when a makeshift meth lab in the family’s garage caught on fire.

A neighbor called emergency workers at about 3:45 p.m., after seeing smoke coming from the garage.

When firefighters arrived at the home, they found the 9-year-old home alone. She was unaware of the fire.

The child’s mother, Melissa Berry, and her boyfriend, Jonathan Coburn, both 35, came home to find firefighters battling the blaze.

Berry and Coburn who lived at the house together with the young girl, leased the house and claim that they had no idea that there was a meth lab in the garage.

The two were arrested and charged with child neglect and manufacturing methamphetamine amongst other charges.

The child was placed with a family member.

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A New Jersey mother says her fifth grade son’s school has repeatedly taken her child’s lunch and thrown it away over unpaid cafeteria balances -- despite having apologized for doing as much in the past.

“This to me is a form of bullying," Amy Ross told NBC 10 after the latest incident, earlier in January, involving her 10-year-old son, Jake, who has a form of autism called Asperger’s Syndrome, and officials at Smithville Elementary School in Galloway Township, N.J. “It’s between the parents and the cafeteria. It’s not between the child and the lunch lady. Let the kids eat their lunch."

Ross’s questioning of the school comes the same week the Salt Lake School District in Utah made headlines for doing the same thing.


A New Jersey mother says her fifth grade son’s school has repeatedly taken her child’s lunch and thrown it away over unpaid cafeteria balances -- despite having apologized for doing as much in the past.

“This to me is a form of bullying," Amy Ross told NBC 10 after the latest incident, earlier in January, involving her 10-year-old son, Jake, who has a form of autism called Asperger’s Syndrome, and officials at Smithville Elementary School in Galloway Township, N.J. “It’s between the parents and the cafeteria. It’s not between the child and the lunch lady. Let the kids eat their lunch."

Ross’s questioning of the school comes the same week the Salt Lake School District in Utah made headlines for doing the same thing.

The Salt Lake Tribune reports Uintah Elementary School officials in Salt Lake City replaced about 32 elementary school students' $2 lunches with fruit and milk on Tuesday because of insufficient or negative balances.

The Tribune cites a school district spokesman as later ..... (article cut to save bandwidth)

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Dr. Zenko Hrynkiw was at Brookwood Medical Center Tuesday morning when he was needed for emergency brain surgery miles away at Trinity Medical Center.

The problem was the sudden snowstorm had locked down traffic, and the neurosurgeon didn’t get farther than a few blocks by vehicle.

“The cell service was bad so we were fading in and out,” said Steve Davis, charge nurse in the neuro intensive care unit at Trinity. “At one point, I heard him say, ‘I’m walking.’”

Davis had alerted authorities, and they were looking for him. There were supposed sightings, but no one could find him.

“The police were looking for him,” Davis said.

Hours had gone by since the initial contact in the morning.

“He finally called me and said, ‘Where’s the patient? What’s the status?’” Davis said. “He spoke to the family and went off to surgery.”

It was an emergency surgery for a traumatic brain injury. Hrynkiw is Trinity’s only brain surgeon, Davis said.

“Without the surgery, the patient would have most likely died,” Davis said. “But he is doing well.”

Davis said he and colleagues at Trinity were estimating the hike to the Montclair Road hospital at about eight miles, although Google Maps puts it at about six. The extreme weather Tuesday has been blamed for five deaths statewide and it stranded untold thousands away from their homes.

“This just speaks volumes to the dedication of the man,” Davis said. “When I saw him, all I could say is ‘you are a good man.’ “

Davis said Hrynkiw takes good care of himself and frequently walks for exercise.

The doctor was hardly the only person to walk miles through the storm. Roads around metro Birmingham were still lined with thousands ..... (article cut to save bandwidth)

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A bizarre incident was caught on a store surveillance video.

A man walked into a One Stop Store in Stretford, United Kingdom, and took two bottles of beer.

He then walked up to the counter and demanded the 51-year-old female worker to give him a discount of £1 (about $1.65).

When the cashier explained that she cannot give him the discount, the man removed a gun from his waistband.

The horrified store clerk told the gunman that police were on the way.

He was not happy about that, and rather than getting into trouble, the man put away the gun and said: "I do not want that.”

He took only one bottle of beer and paid £3 for it. The store clerk gave him the proper change.

The suspect then placed the change into a charity box and left.

Police are taking the incident very seriously, as the female worker was shaken by the incident.

Police are looking for the suspect before he strikes again.

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(Reuters) - Police on Friday recovered the piece of cloth stained with the blood of the late Pope John Paul, a day after they found the stolen gold and glass case which once contained the relic.

They told a news conference in L'Aquila, east of Rome, that they found the fragment in the garage of two men who were detained for having stolen the reliquary last week.

Bishop Giovanni D'Ercole told the same news conference he had pieced together the reliquary and the cloth after police found them in bits on successive days.

The recovered piece of fabric was missing just a few filaments of cloth and gold thread, he said.

"I think John Paul has forgiven them. I think we have to do the same," D'Ercole said of the men, believed by police to be drug addicts.

The reliquary and a crucifix were stolen from the isolated mountain church of San Pietro della Ienca last weekend.

The cloth was a fragment of the cassock that John Paul was wearing on May 13, 1981 when he was shot in an assassination attempt.

Relics of saints and other holy figures are often displayed in reliquaries to be venerated by the Catholic faithful.

The late pope, who is due to be declared a saint on April 27, loved the mountains in the Abruzzo region because they reminded him of those in his native Poland. He would slip away secretly from the pressures of the Vatican to hike and ski there in the early years of his papacy.

His secretary, now Cardinal Stanislaw Dziwisz of Krakow in Poland, gave the local community the relic.

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An emaciated man whose boat washed up on the shores of the Pacific’s Marshall Islands is reportedly telling a harrowing tale of being adrift for 16 months, surviving on fish, birds, and turtle blood.

The man—who only speaks Spanish—says he drifted more than 8,000 miles in his 24-foot fiberglass boat, after leaving Mexico for El Salvador in September 2012, the AFP reports. He had been traveling with a companion who he says died at sea several months ago.

Two locals discovered the man Thursday when his boat with propeller-less engines floated onto the reef at Ebon Atoll. He has long hair and a beard, and was wearing only ragged underwear, the report said.

"His condition isn't good, but he's getting better," Ola Fjeldstad, a Norwegian anthropology student told AFP by phone. Fjeldstad is part of a group doing research on Ebon-- the southernmost outpost of the Marshall Islands-- who was helping the man.

It’s been difficult to get more details on the man’s story because of a language barrier, but he told the researchers his name is Jose Ivan. He did say that he survived by eating birds and fish he caught with his bare hands, and drinking turtle blood when there was no rain.

No fishing gear was found on the boat and Ivan suggested he caught turtles and birds with his bare hands. There was a turtle on the vessel when it landed at Ebon.

"The boat is really scratched up and looks like it has been in the water for a long time," Fjeldstad said.

The locals who found Ivan took him to the main island, which is so remote there’s only one phone line at the local council house and no Internet. There he met Mayor Ione de ..... (article cut to save bandwidth)

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A 102-year-old man has broken his own world record after cycling 16.7 miles in one hour.

Robert Marchand set a new record in the over-100s category on Friday, beating his previous best distance in the race against the clock by 1.5 miles.

The Frenchman set his previous record two years ago.

The current overall world record for one hour is 30.9 set by Czech Ondrej Sosenka in 2005.

Marchand, a retired firefighter and logger, received a standing ovation and was surrounded by dozens of photographers at the finish line in France's new National Velodrome.

The 74m euro (£60m) complex officially opened its doors Thursday.

Supported by two assistants, he smiled and raised his arms and said: "It was very good, but at the end it started to become very hard.

"You have to know there are people who came from 600 kilometres away to see me today. It is incredible. That's all I can say."

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Russian men who down large amounts of vodka — and too many do — have an "extraordinarily" high risk of an early death, a new study says.

Researchers tracked about 151,000 adult men in the Russian cities of Barnaul, Byisk and Tomsk from 1999 to 2010. They interviewed them about their drinking habits and, when about 8,000 later died, followed up to monitor their causes of death.

The risk of dying before age 55 for those who said they drank three or more half-liter bottles of vodka a week was a shocking 35 percent.

Overall, a quarter of Russian men die before reaching 55, compared with 7 percent of men in the United Kingdom and less than 1 percent in the United States. The life expectancy for men in Russia is 64 years — placing it among the lowest 50 countries in the world in that category.

It's not clear how many Russian men drink three bottles or more a week. Lead researcher Sir Richard Peto of Oxford University said the average Russian adult drinks 20 liters of vodka per year while the average Briton drinks about three liters of spirits.

"Russians clearly drink a lot, but it's this pattern of getting really smashed on vodka and then continuing to drink that is dangerous," Peto said.

"The rate of men dying prematurely in Russia is totally out of line with the rest of Europe," he said. "There's also a heavy drinking culture in Finland and Poland but they still have nothing like Russia's risk of death."

Alcohol has long been a top killer in Russia and vodka is often the drink of choice, available cheaply and often homemade in small villages. Previous studies have estimated that more than 40 percent of working-age men ..... (article cut to save bandwidth)

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A woman got a shock when she went downstairs, started making breakfast and found a puma roaming around in her kitchen.

Amalin Haddad screamed as she made the startling discovery in the family home in the Lo Curro area of Santiago, Chile.

At first, she thought it was a dog but then realised it was a puma and promptly locked it in the kitchen before calling authorities.

Ms Haddad's son, Nicolas Selma, said he was awoken by his mother's screams and went down to see what was happening.

The two-year-old big cat did not attack either of them, or their dog, but footage showed it chewing on a window blind which ended up ripped apart on the floor. Furniture was also damaged.

Ms Haddad said: "I was making breakfast and all of a sudden … I thought it was a dog because I saw its legs first, but it was a puma. A puma, a puma like those you see in the zoo."

Her son told reporters: "I was sleeping when all of a sudden I heard screams, 'It's a puma!' I came down and we really had a puma locked in the kitchen."

The cat was then shot with tranquiliser darts by experts but it reportedly managed to take them out.

And it took them a while to remove the animal from the kitchen after it was eventually sedated.

Police said the animal was well cared for. It was probably a pet that had either escaped or was released into the wild and was trying to get home when it came across the Haddad house, they said.

Neighbour Carolina Herrera said: "The people from SAG [agricultural service] shot it with three darts so it would sleep so they could ..... (article cut to save bandwidth)

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An Arizona animal shelter has a rather large cat on its hands.

The Maricopa County Animal Care and Control recently received a 36-pound cat at one of its shelters in the Phoenix area.

The cat named "Meatball" is temporarily staying in an office at the shelter because he's too large to fit into a standard kennel.

The cat is not available for adoption.

Instead, the shelter is trying to place him with a rescue organization that helps overweight cats.

The shelter says Meatball is extremely friendly and says he can comfortably walk despite his weight.

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