Sign up for our COVID-19 newsletter to stay up-to-date on the latest coronavirus news throughout New York By Ana BorrutoSunday marks 20 years since TWA Flight 800 exploded over the Atlantic Ocean several miles off Long Island, killing all 230 onboard, yet the debate over the exact cause of the tragedy rages on.The anniversary has brought new attention to old questions regarding whether terrorism, so-called “friendly fire,” or a technological malfunction brought the plane down. Theories have circulated since the disaster that Flight 800’s demise was the result of an errant missile fired by the U.S. Navy, or a terrorist. Victims’ families and loved ones joined first responders Sunday honoring all those who lost their lives.“Sometimes I go ‘Well, why me? Why did I survive and then my friends did not?’” said David Crane, a former TWA flight attendant who was on the same plane days before it crashed. He said flight attendants went through more advanced training after the crash. “It went from ‘How to handle hijackers’ to how to handle ‘if you survive, if there is a bomb on board,’ which is a totally different scenario.”The Boeing 747 destined for Paris fell from the sky 12 minutes after taking off from John F. Kennedy International Airport on the night of July 17, 1996. It ranks as the third-deadliest aviation accident in U.S. history. The victims are remembered at the TWA Flight 800 International Memorial at Smith Point County Park in Shirley.Among those hosting memorial events is Barry Donadio, who was an EMT at the time. He responded to the crash site after he and other first responders were told there were survivors. But once on the scene, they soon realized the sad reality that there were no survivors, as the bodies of passengers and crew members were brought ashore.“There are times you can be the best EMT, doctor, or whatever you are, and there’s sometimes nothing you can do other than pray for somebody,” Donadio said.The victims included 16 members of a Pennsylvania high school French club, American composer David Hogan and Jack O’Hara, executive producer of ABC Sports.Christine Negroni, an aviation journalist who was at the scene for six weeks covering the crash for CNN, recalled that she was on one of TWA’s 747s to Rome two weeks before the crash.“It feels very personal when you [try to] imagine what it was like to be those people,” Negroni said. “I did think about that quite a bit when I was out at the scene for CNN.”Negroni is the author of The Crash Detectives: Investigating the World’s Most Mysterious Air Disasters, which is due out in September, one of several books that explore the cause of Flight 800. Negroni doubts theories that a missile brought down the plane, as some witnesses have said. Four years after the crash, the National Transportation Safety Board concluded that the likely culprit was an electrical malfunction causing the fuel tank to explode.“Problems have been solved,” Negroni said. “Every catastrophe creates an opportunity to make a safer airplane.”Another book, TWA Flight 800: The Crash, The Cover-up, and The Conspiracy, by journalist Jack Cashill, released July 5, revisits theories that the plane was brought down by terrorists, by the U.S. military, or other means besides the NTSB’s narrative.But regardless of what brought the plane down, the victims’ friends and family hope the anniversary will help bring closure, while keeping their loved ones’ memories alive.
Linda Mae Hokey, age 72, of Brookville, Indiana passed away peacefully Friday, February 9, 2018 at Reid Health in Richmond, Indiana surrounded by her loved ones.Born March 23, 1945 in Laurel, Indiana she was the daughter of the late Chester S. & Opal I. (Tussey) Himes. She was united in marriage to Louis V. Hokey Sr., and he preceded her in death in 1992.Linda was retired from Sperry Rubber & Plastics in Brookville where she had worked for many years. In her leisure time she enjoyed dancing, rock & roll, playing cards, and dice. She was a lifelong Elvis fan. Linda loved to laugh and will be remembered as the life of the party. She had the ability to bring a smile to anyone with her quick wit and sense of humor like no other. In her final hours, Linda slept comfortably as her family surrounded her laughing, crying and sharing funny stories about vacations they took and the outrageous things she would say. She transitioned quietly listening to Elvis music. She did it her way!She is survived by a daughter, Carol L. Murrell Mahaney of Richmond, Indiana, her son Louis V. Hokey Jr. of Laurel, Indiana; six grandchildren, Brandon Combs; her first born grandson and best friend whom she adored; Shawn & Daryl Murrell, Tasha, David, and Kayla Hokey; 12 great-grandchildren, Brantley and Summer Combs, Madilyn & Preston Jones, Madison Terry, Mason & Elliot Hokey, Trenton Thompson, Triniti, Tyler and Tori Gabbard, Maci Durstock; four siblings, George Himes and David ‘Davey’ Himes of Brookville, Indiana, Barbara Milbourne of Dearborn Heights, Michigan, and Donna Foster of Brookville, Indiana.In addition to her parents and husband, she was preceded in death by her youngest son Billy Hokey who died in 1988; three sisters, Doris Burch, Betty Barber, Jenny Fay Himes; and a brother; Kenneth Himes.Family & friends may visit from 4 until 7:00 P.M. on Tuesday, February 13, 2018 at Phillips & Meyers Funeral Home, 1025 Franklin Avenue, Brookville.Rev. Wayne Ison will officiate the Funeral Services on Wednesday, February 14, 2018, 11:00 A.M., at Phillips & Meyers Funeral Home, 1025 Franklin Avenue, Brookville. Burial will then follow in Laurel North Cemetery in Laurel, Indiana. A memorial dinner will follow at the Laurel Community Center.Phillips & Meyers Funeral Home is honored to serve the family of Linda Hokey, to sign the online guest book or send a personal condolence please visit www.phillipsandmeyers.com .
FORMER FIFA referees Venton Mars and Sherwin Moore have retired from the beautiful game of football, having served a combined total in excess of 21 years.Mars, who served as a FIFA and National assistant referee, and Moore, a referee, both went into retirement over the January–February period.Both match officials have officiated in matches across the Caribbean Football Union, CONCACAF and FIFA regions.Mars began his FIFA career in 2004 while Moore began in 2013.In an invited comment, Chairman of the Referees Committee and Executive Committee Member Dion Inniss said the institutional memory of the technical personnel should be preserved:“Sherwin and Venton are the true embodiments of service to the game. Now that they are no longer active officials, we look forward to them using their experience and knowledge gained over the years to mentor future match officials.”
USC joined a collaborative effort Sept. 10 to stabilize and reinvigorate the Charles R. Drew University of Medicine and Science after CDU’s two-year struggle to expand the university without the support of Los Angeles County.After CDU was cited by Los Angeles County for repeatedly putting patients in danger of injury and death, officials disassociated the university from its teaching hospital, Martin Luther King Jr. Hospital. CDU students’ guaranteed access to a training hospital was revoked and the school’s enrollment decreased by 50 percent. The school’s subsequent loss of financial support greatly reduced its ability to send students into resident programs.With the cooperation of the former CDU Board of Trustees, leaders from USC, Catholic Healthcare West, Cedars-Sinai Medical, Kaiser Permanente, The California Endowment and UCLA have formed a new governing board to redirect the financial management of CDU.A board of councilors, comprised of senior health care and education leaders from the different universities, will advise the Board of Trustees.“The university is not slowing down. Its board has been reconstructed and reinvigorated. The new board will map out a plan to rescue the university,” said Fred MacFarlane, spokesman for the CDU Board of Trustees.Now with the guidance of two new boards, CDU is on the way to recovering from a series of financial strains, MacFarlane said.Hopeful that the downward trend was only temporary, the university broke ground on a nursing school that opened last month. With no significant increase in enrollment or funding, CDU is struggling to make loan and insurance payments for the new nursing facility.No entity, USC or otherwise, has announced any financial commitment to the university to date, MacFarlane said.The dean of USC’s Keck School of Medicine and member of the CDU Board of Trustees, Carmen Puliafito, said the board’s mission is to help CDU explore strategies to remain financially viable.“CDU has done a great job reducing disparities over the years. It’s the only historically black medical school west of the Mississippi so it has had a significant role in producing minority doctors. We will provide guidance to the university as it goes forward,” Puliafito said.The board hopes that under its new leadership CDU will be able to establish an agreement with the Martin Luther King Jr. Hospital projected to re-open in early 2013, MacFarlane said.The Martin Luther King Jr. Hospital was closed by the federal government in 2007 because of care problems. It will re-open and be run by a non-profit company.Enrollment at CDU could potentially be restored to the capacity it had in 2006 — before the university’s separation from Los Angeles County — if its medical residents and nursing students were guaranteed training and residency in a hospital, he said.As for the short term, the Board of Trustees’ first order of business will be getting CDU’s financial affairs in order.“A week ago, outlooks for the university’s financial situation were bleak. Now they are significantly brightened. That bodes well for the university and it bodes well for the underserved communities of South L.A., which CDU has served,” MacFarlane said.