Region/digest 04/20/05

Wednesday, April 20, 2005

Holocaust survivor speaks at SEMO today

Nazi concentration camp survivor Maria Szapszewicz will speak at noon today in the University Center Ballroom as Southeast Missouri State University observes Holocaust Remembrance Day. The lecture is free and open to the public. Szapszewicz survived the Auschwitz and Bergen-Belsen concentration camps. She endured near-starvation and a typhus epidemic.

Senate approves bill on underage drinking

JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. -- Teens could lose their drivers' licenses or possibly a spot on the football team if they're caught drinking alcohol under legislation that won initial Senate approval Tuesday. Under the measure, school districts must establish a policy for punishing students who drink on or off school property. Details would be up to each district but could include kicking students out of school activities. The Senate narrowly passed an amendment preventing those under 16 who are convicted of being a minor in possession alcohol from obtaining their drivers' licenses until they turn 18, up from 16 1/2 under the original measure.

Four from Jackson hurt in accident on U.S. 61

Four Jackson residents were injured Tuesday afternoon in a three-car crash on U.S. 61, the Missouri State Highway Patrol said. Roderick Thompson, 22; John Thompson, 48; Christopher Johnston, 39; and Caleb Johnston, 10, were all taken to Saint Francis Medical Center in Cape Girardeau with minor injuries. The accident occurred when a vehicle driven by Roderick Thompson struck a vehicle driven by Christopher Johnson in the rear. Johnson's vehicle then struck a vehicle driven by 33-year-old Wendy Seabaugh of Jackson in the rear. Roderick Thompson was issued a summons for careless and imprudent driving.

Researcher exploring link between sunlight, sleep

ST. LOUIS -- Encouraged by initial results, a St. Louis University medical school researcher is exploring whether exposure to morning sunlight can help elderly nursing home residents have a better night's sleep. Dr. Julie Gammack, a geriatrician, said nine residents of a St. Louis nursing home reported a better night's sleep following two weeks of an-hour-a-day exposure to natural sunlight in a study last year. She plans a larger study of 25 residents at another nursing home.

-- From staff, wire reports

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