Soccer-dribbling Monroe fundraisers complete 250-mile mission

Published: Monday, June 03, 2013 @ 5:00 PM
Updated: Sunday, June 09, 2013 @ 12:29 AM

During their 13-day, 250-mile walk from Monroe to Toledo, four college buddies learned a lot about themselves, raised $3,000 more than their goal, and even named their soccer ball, their constant companion.

Three Monroe High School graduates — Jake Essig, 21, Derek Garde, 21, and Nick Streibick, 20 — and Isaac Beal, 22, of Greenfield, Ind., who graduated from Huntington University recently, won’t soon forget the Summer of 2013.

Last summer, as members of the Huntington (Ind.) University men’s soccer team, Essig, a 2010 Monroe High School graduate, and Beal attended a soccer camp in Toledo, where they were introduced to LifeLine Toledo, the city’s medical unit.

Since their bus is in major need of repairs and upgrades to keep up with the demand of its services, they decided to raise money and awareness by dribbling one soccer ball — named Wilson in honor of the volleyball in “Castaway” — among the four of them along U.S. 127.

After averaging about 20 miles a day, they arrived in Toledo at 5:30 p.m. Saturday, days before they expected, and immediately attended a community dinner there to celebrate their accomplishment.

They came up with a name — Dribble4Toledo — and decided to raise funds with a goal of $10,000. Essig said the group raised $13,000, thanks to the generosity of local companies and individuals who made monetary donations along the way.

The four guys all planned to carry 35-pound backpacks, and spend some nights sleeping along the road. But every night, they either slept in churches, homes and one night, in a hotel, courtesy of a gentleman they met.

The experience, Essig said, showed that if you display “energy, effort and a steadfast heart,” you can change this world, one dribble at a time.

“It gave us a great sense of accomplishment,” Essig said.

Throughout the trip, he said, the guys met the “nicest people in America,” those who housed them, fed them or simply gave them a thumbs up.

“They believed in us,” said Essig, who added they were joined for short stretches by others who wanted to volunteer.

Essig said there were two “close calls.” Both times, he said, in the final miles before the group reached Toledo, they were nearly hit by cars that were passing semis. They came within a foot or two of being hit, he said.

“A chilling experience,” he said. “One of us should have gotten hurt.”

When Essig’s parents drove him home Saturday night, he headed directly to the shower, then bed.

“It was nice to be home,” he said with a laugh.

But when he woke up Sunday and Monday morning, there was something missing. There was no duct taped soccer ball to dribble, no miles to log, no mission to accomplish.

“I can’t sit still,” Essig said. “I hope we have inspired others to go to action. We all have a lot to offer in this dark world at times. The power of one is amazing.”

Young father killed by rock thrown from overpass; teenagers arrested

Published: Sunday, October 22, 2017 @ 2:09 PM

A Genesee County Sheriff's Office investigator takes photos from an overpass on I-75 above the scene of a traffic fatality on Oct. 18 where a driver died after he was stuck by a large rock thrown from the freeway overpass. 
Terray Sylvester/AP
A Genesee County Sheriff's Office investigator takes photos from an overpass on I-75 above the scene of a traffic fatality on Oct. 18 where a driver died after he was stuck by a large rock thrown from the freeway overpass. (Terray Sylvester/AP)

Michigan authorities are investigating the death of a young father killed Wednesday night when a large rock thrown from an Interstate 75 overpass north of Flint in Genesee County hit his windshield, according to WDIV-TV.

>> Read more trending news

Police took several teenagers into custody Friday for questioning in the death of Kenneth Andrew White, 32, of Mount Morris, who was driving home from his construction job when the incident happened, local news outlets reported.

At least four other cars had been struck by at least 20 rocks thrown off the overpass and had pulled over before White’s van was hit, police said

The victim’s fiancée, Amy Cagle, had to tell their 5-year-old son that his father wasn’t coming home, WDIV reported.

"He was a good man and a good father," Cagle said.

She said she couldn’t understand how such a “senseless act, for it to be just a rock,” could “take him so soon.”

"I just don't understand what a person could be thinking to even want to do something like that," White’s sister, Alicia Waskoski, told WDIV.

Genesee County Sheriff's officers investigate the scene of a traffic fatality in Vienna Township, Mich. where a driver was killed when a rock thrown from an overpass on Interstate 75 north of Flint, hit his windshield.(Terray Sylvester/AP)

>> Related: Driver killed in freak accident after tire flies off truck, striking car on Georgia freeway

"To know they're putting lives in danger by just throwing rocks (from the overpass)."

The White family is collecting money GoFundMe page to help with medical and funeral costs.

Man kills 416-pound wild boar in front yard of suburban Houston home

Published: Sunday, October 22, 2017 @ 11:52 AM

Two wild boar cubs are pictured here. The boars grow up to become major nuisances in parts of Texas where a Houston-area man just shot a huge boar in his backyard.
DIETER NAGL/AFP/Getty Images
Two wild boar cubs are pictured here. The boars grow up to become major nuisances in parts of Texas where a Houston-area man just shot a huge boar in his backyard.(DIETER NAGL/AFP/Getty Images)

Wild boars are considered a pest in Texas, where the animals can cause significant property damage.

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So when Joe Clowers spotted a massive boar in the backyard of his suburban Houston home last weekend, he did what plenty of Texans do, he shot and killed it, the Houston Chronicle reported.

Clowers sent a photo of the 416-pound beast to the Gregg County Game Warden.

He also shared a photo of himself standing next to the huge animal. 

>> Related: Man kills 820-pound wild hog found in his front yard

Wild boar are a big problem in rural Texas and they’re increasingly showing up in suburban areas now, the Chronicle reported.

Jimmy Carter says he’d go to North Korea to help ease tensions

Published: Sunday, October 22, 2017 @ 8:42 AM

What You Need to Know about Jimmy Carter

Jimmy Carter said he “would go” to North Korea as an emissary for President Donald Trump, the former president told New York Times columnist Maureen Dowd.

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In a wide-ranging interview that covered topics such as the relationship between Trump and Russian president Vladimir Putin, Carter told Dowd he was eager to partner with the president on a diplomatic mission to North Korea.

Carter told Dowd he would be willing to go to North Korea amid the ongoing tensions over nuclear weapons.

"I would go, yes," he said.

Carter, 93, said he has talked with Trump's national security adviser, Lt. Gen. H. R. McMaster, about his intentions but was given "a negative response."

"I told him that I was available if they ever need me," he said.

It would not be the first time Carter collaborated with a president or traveled to North Korea in a diplomatic mission. In 2010, he negotiated the release of an imprisoned U.S. citizen.

Carter also flew to North Korea in 1994 over the objections of President Bill Clinton and made a deal with Kim Il-sung to help prevent a nuclear confrontation.

Fox offers Bill O’Reilly big contract after $32 million settlement, Gretchen Carlson reacts

Published: Sunday, October 22, 2017 @ 1:57 PM

Inside Bill O'Reilly

Fox News offered Bill O’Reilly a $25 million contract even though O’Reilly had agreed to settle a sexual harassment claim for $32 million, according to The New York Times.

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The Times reported that O’Reilly settled out of court with former Fox News legal analyst Lis Wiehl just months before he was dismissed from the network.

O’Reilly categorized the Times piece as a “smear article” about him and defended himself on his website.

“In its latest diatribe against Bill O’Reilly, the Times printed leaked information provided by anonymous sources that is out of context, false, defamatory, and obviously designed to embarrass Bill O’Reilly and to keep him from competing in the marketplace,” a statement on O’Reilly’s website said.

“In the more than 20 years Bill O’Reilly worked at Fox News, not one complaint was filed against him with the human resources department or legal department by a coworker, even on the anonymous hotline,” the statement continued. 

The New York Times has copies of two letters written by 21st Century Fox lawyers attesting to that fact.”

>> Related: Recently released details put a new spin on when Bill O’Reilly and Fox News parted ways

After O’Reilly tweeted a link to his post, former “Fox & Friends” host Carlson responded.

“Nobody pays $32 million for false allegations – nobody,” Carlson wrote.

Carlson settled out of court in 2016, after she left Fox News amid her own allegations of sexual harassment against then chiarmen Roger Ailes.