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Source: MedleyStory

Canine buddies form special bond

It’s a buddy story born amid homelessness and suffering.

Chachi and Jonie formed a special bond with each other on the streets of Savannah, Georgia, and their devotion has pulled at the heartstrings of the local community.

According to animal control officers, both are strays and were found roaming the streets. At the time, Chachi – a long-hair Chihuahua mix – was suffering with a horrific eye infection.

Jonie, a white lab-pit bull mix, was carrying her stricken friend around gently secured in her mouth. Witnesses have told authorities that Jonie was seen occasionally licking Chachi’s swollen eye, attempting to ease his pain.

"It's not every day we get to see such devotion between two special dogs like this," said Animal Control Officer Christina Sutherin on the Savannah-Chatham Metropolitan Police Facebook page. "They are both such sweet animals. But the relationship they share just sets them apart.”

The veterinary staff at the Metro Animal Shelter could not save Chachi's ruptured eye, but they have been able to nurse him back to help. And earlier this week, the pair was reunited during a visit.

On the Facebook page, staff members described the emotional reunion as the two buddies whined, caressed and cuddled.

The dogs have been put up for adoption and animal control officials hope they will be taken in by the same home.

“It would be wonderful if we could find a home that could take both of them,” Sutherin said. “But that is not always possible."

Published: Wed, 23 Jul 2014 10:45:49 -0700

Medical mystery: Baby who can’t open mouth celebrates first birthday

The Scott family is seeking help: What is wrong with Wyatt?

Wyatt Scott celebrated his first birthday in June. But while guests enjoyed traditional party fare, Wyatt was required to obtain nourishment through a G-tube.

Since his birth, Wyatt has not been able to open his mouth.

According to “Good Morning America,” Wyatt was born in Ottawa, Canada, in June 2013. Since then, doctors and specialists have been baffled about why the otherwise healthy baby cannot open his mouth. Dr. J. P. Vaccani, Wyatt’s doctor, has diagnosed the condition as congenital trismus, but the root cause of the condition remains a mystery.

CT and MRI scans did not reveal any abnormalities, such as extra tissue or a fused joint that often causes congenital trismus. What tests have revealed is that Wyatt suffers from lockjaw, and has impaired motor function which impacts his swallowing ability.

These symptoms have caused anxious moments for the Scott family, with several choking episodes that prompted 911 calls and hospital stays.

After one such choking incident, doctors fitted Wyatt with a G-tube, which allows his liquid food to be delivered through his stomach instead of a tube in his nose.

The Scott family has launched a website, What's wrong with Wyatt? seeking the public’s help in finding out the cause of Wyatt’s puzzling condition. The website contains medical background information on Wyatt, including suggested diagnoses, tests performed and the specialists the baby has seen in the first year of his life.

 

The website also contains a gallery of Wyatt, who despite his serious medical condition appears to be a happy baby. The family maintains a blog and social media accounts to keep readers updated on Wyatt’s condition.

Published: Wed, 23 Jul 2014 09:34:09 -0700

Boy helps brother with disabilities complete triathlon

It's being called a story of extraordinary brotherly love — an 8-year-old boy determined to have his younger brother with special needs live a full, normal life helped him complete a youth triathlon.

Noah Aldrich said, "He most of the time doesn't get what I get to do. Like when I play sports, he has to just watch. I just wanted to finish with Lucas." (Via KIVI)

The boys' parents told NBC older brother Noah pulled and pushed 6-year-old Lucas the entire time as he swam, biked and ran in the Y-Not Mini Triathlon in Boise, Idaho, earlier this month.

According to KTVB, Noah pushed Lucas in a jogging stroller for the course's 1-mile run, pulled the stroller behind his bike for the 3-mile ride and made the 200-meter swim with a harness around his chest that was attached to a raft holding his brother.

More often than not, we see stories like this of parents helping their children with special needs compete in races and other events. (Via New York Daily NewsNBC)

But 8-year-old Noah's remarkably mature decision to help his brother came as no surprise to his family.

According to a blog about Lucas on the Aldrich family's CaringBridge page, Lucas was born with a rare genetic condition that's left him unable to walk, talk or eat on his own.

But even though he's only 8, Noah knows not to let that stop him from doing normal things with his brother every day. (Via NBC)

"I like everything about him; he's perfect. We go on walks. We just walk around the neighborhood. Are you having fun, little buddy?" said Noah. (Via KTVB)

Siblings have teamed up like this before.

Back in 2012, 9-year-old Conner Long and his 7-year-old brother, Cayden, were named Sports Illustrated's SportsKids of the year after they started traveling across the country to compete in triathlons together. (Via ABC)

​As for Noah and Lucas, they were able to finish the youth triathlon in just over 54 minutes. And their parents and even the announcer at the race that day said they couldn't be prouder.

Published: Wed, 23 Jul 2014 09:29:59 -0700

Plane crashes in Taiwan, 47 trapped, feared dead

A plane landing in stormy weather crashed outside an airport on a small Taiwanese island late Wednesday, and the transport minister said 47 people were trapped and feared dead.

Taiwanese Transport Minister Yeh Kuang-shih was quoted by the government's Central News Agency as saying 11 other people were injured when the plane crashed and caught fire while making a second landing attempt.

Yeh was quoted as saying the flight, operated by Taiwan's TransAsia Airways, carried 58 passengers and crew members.

The news agency had earlier quoted a local fire brigade chief as saying that 51 people had been killed.

Flight GE222, a twin-engine turboprop ATR-72 aircraft, was heading from the southern port city of Kaohsiung to the island of Penghu in the Taiwan Strait, according to the Taiwanese news agency.

It crashed outside the airport in Xixi village, and pictures in local media showed firefighters using flashlights to look at wreckage in the darkness.

Penghu is a lightly populated island that averages about two flights a day from Taipei.

The flight left Kaohsiung at 4:53 p.m. for Magong on Penghu, according to the head of Taiwan's Civil Aeronautics Administration, Jean Shen. At 7:06 p.m., after saying it would make a second attempt at a landing, the plane lost contact with the tower.

Visibility as the plane approached was 1,600 meters (one mile), which met standards for landing, and two flights had landed before GE222, one at 5:34 p.m. and the other at 6:57 p.m., the agency reported.

But it appeared that heavy rain reduced visibility and the plane was forced to pull up and make a second landing attempt, the report cited the county fire department as saying.

Taiwan was battered by Typhoon Matmo early Tuesday morning, and the Central Weather Bureau warned of heavy rain through the evening, even though the center of the storm was in mainland China.

Shen said the plane was 14 years old.

In October 2013, a Lao Airlines ATR-72 crashed during a heavy storm as it approached Pakse Airport in southern Laos, killing all 49 people on board.

Published: Wed, 23 Jul 2014 08:32:52 -0700

Huge schizophrenia study finds dozens of new genetic causes

A consortium of hundreds of researchers has released what's been dubbed the largest study ever into the genetic causes of mental illness. The illness in focus: schizophrenia.
 
The study, published in Nature, compared the DNA of around 150,000 individuals spanning clinics all over the world.
 
They found 108 places on the genome that tend to be different in people with the disease than in people without.
 
Of those 108, 83 are totally new findings, meaning the possibilities for research into the genetic causes of and treatments for the disease have now more than tripled. 
 
Schizophrenia affects around 1 percent of the population, according to the National Institute of Mental Health. Some of the common symptoms are hallucinations involving any of the five senses, delusions, particularly feelings of persecution, depression-like symptoms like apathy and lack of pleasure, and what the NIMH calls "disorganized thinking."
 
One of the trademark symptoms is hearing voices. Artist Sue Morgan tried to tell Nature what that's like earlier this year.
 
"I can hear various conversations, and there's a particular set of conversations which are two people having a telephone conversation and I'm intercepting it."
 
And CNN's Anderson Cooper got a taste recently when he tried a "schizophrenia simulator."
 
"It makes you feel completely isolated from everyone else around you. You don't want to engage in conversation with other people, you find yourself wanting to engage in conversation with the voices in your head."
 
There are drugs that help people manage the hallucinations and delusions, but LiveScience says, "No medications with fundamentally new ways of treating schizophrenia have been developed since the 1950s."
 
That might change with the help of the new study. And while DNA can't account for all of the risk factors for schizophrenia, the researcher in charge of the study, Michael O'Donovan, told the BBC understanding the genetics is a huge first step.
 
"What it does do is give the opportunity for lots of further research really firmly based in a solid foundation of knowledge to understand the biology."
 
The National Institutes of Health estimate the U.S. will spend more than $230 million on schizophrenia research this year.

Published: Wed, 23 Jul 2014 07:59:09 -0700

Pedestrian fatally struck in Sebastopol

A 58-year-old man died hours after being struck by a car south of Sebastopol on Tuesday night, according to the California Highway Patrol.

The collision was reported at 10:02 p.m. on state Highway 116 near Sparkes Road.

A 39-year-old Santa Ana man driving a 2014 Toyota Camry was going east on Highway 116 between 35 and 40 mph and saw a pedestrian walking on the right shoulder, according to the CHP.

The pedestrian then turned and ran directly into the path of the Camry, which struck him, CHP officials said.

The pedestrian was taken to Santa Rosa Memorial Hospital and succumbed to his injuries at about 3:30 a.m. Wednesday, according to the CHP. His name has not yet been released.

Alcohol or drug impairment are not suspected for the Camry driver. The crash remains under investigation, CHP officials said.

Published: Wed, 23 Jul 2014 07:55:29 -0700

Malaysia jet victims' bodies arrive in Netherlands

Two military transport planes carrying 40 coffins bearing victims of the downing of Malaysia Airlines Flight 17 landed Wednesday in the southern city of Eindhoven, and pro-Russian rebels shot down two fighter jets in Ukraine's restive east as fighting flared in the region.

Six days after the Boeing 777 was shot down over the battlefields of eastern Ukraine, the first bodies finally arrived in the Netherlands, the country that bore the heaviest toll in the crash that killed all 298 passengers and crew.

A Dutch Hercules C-130 that Dutch government spokesman Lodewijk Hekking says is carrying 16 coffins was closely followed by an Australian C-17 Globemaster plane carrying 24 coffins.

British investigators began work on a pair of "black boxes" to retrieve data on the flight's last minutes, while Dutch officials said they have taken charge of the stalled investigation of the airline disaster and pleaded for unhindered access to the wreckage.

The two military transport planes, one Dutch and one Australian, departed Ukraine at midday, and landed at Eindhoven Air Base where the flights were met by Dutch King Willem-Alexander, Queen Maxima, Prime Minister Mark Rutte and other government officials. Hundreds of relatives were also there, according to government spokesman Lodewijk Hekking. He said the planes carried 40 coffins in all.

"If I have to wait five months for identification, I can do it," said Silene Fredriksz-Hoogzand, whose son, Bryce, and his girlfriend Daisy Oehlers died in the crash. "Waiting while the bodies were in the field and in the train was a nightmare."

Ukraine and Western nations are pressing the pro-Russian rebels who control the crash site to allow an unfettered investigation, something Russian President Vladimir Putin said he would use his influence to achieve. Though confident that a missile brought down the passenger jet, U.S. officials say Russia's role remains unclear.

Ukraine's defense ministry said two fighter planes were shot down about 30 kilometers (20 miles) south of the site of the Malaysia Airlines wreckage. The separatist Donetsk People's Republic said in a statement on its website that one of the pilots was killed and another was being sought by rebel fighters.

While the insurgents deny having missiles capable of hitting a jetliner at cruising altitude, rebel leader Alexander Borodai has said that separatist fighters do have Strela-10M ground-to-air missiles which are capable of hitting targets up to an altitude of 3,500 meters (11,500 feet).

In fighting on the ground Wednesday, rebel leader Pavel Gubarev wrote on his Facebook page that his men retreated Wednesday from the villages of Chervona Zorya and Kozhevnya, on the Russian border about 45 kilometers (30 miles) from the scene of the crash. Gubarev said 30 rebels had been injured.

Britain's Air Accidents Investigation Branch said Wednesday that Dutch authorities had delivered the plane's voice and data recorders to the agency's base at Farnborough, southern England, where information will be downloaded. Experts will also check for signs of tampering.

The Dutch Safety Board, which is leading an international team of 24 investigators, and said unhindered access to the crash site is critical.

Spokesman Tjibbe Joustra told The Associated Press in a telephone interview that around 25 investigators already are in Kiev analyzing information including photos, satellite images and radar information, but have not yet gained access to the crash site.

"We haven't yet gotten guarantees about security for our way of working. If we go we have to be able to move freely," he said. "We hope to be able to get to the site soon."

Independent military analysts said Wednesday that the size, spread, shape and number of shrapnel impacts visible in an AP photograph of a piece of the wreckage all point to a missile system like the SA-11 Buk.

U.S. analysts have also concluded that an SA-11 was the likely weapon.

Konrad Muzyka, Europe and CIS armed forces analyst at IHS Jane's, said the high number of shrapnel holes in the debris meant that only a fragmentary warhead like the SA-11 could have been used. "The Buk has a 70-kilogram (155-pound) warhead which explodes and sends shrapnel out," he said. The fact the shrapnel holes are folded inwards confirmed that the explosion came from outside the plane, he added.

Justin Bronk, military sciences research analyst at the Royal United Services Institute, said "the size of shrapnel holes is fairly broad, in keeping with what you would expect from a large missile like the SA-11."

The European Union on Tuesday imposed sanctions against more Russian individuals but refrained from targeting entire sectors of the Russian economy while waiting for clearer evidence of Moscow's role in the disaster.

Senior U.S. intelligence officials said Tuesday that Russia was responsible for "creating the conditions" that led to the crash, but they offered no evidence of direct Russian government involvement.

The officials, who briefed reporters Tuesday under ground rules that their names not be used, said the plane was likely shot down by an SA-11 surface-to-air missile fired by Russian-backed separatists. They cited intercepts, satellite photos and social media postings by separatists, some of which have been authenticated by U.S. experts.

The intelligence officials were cautious in their assessment, noting that while the Russians have been arming separatists in eastern Ukraine, the U.S. had no direct evidence that the missile used to shoot down the passenger jet came from Russia.

Published: Wed, 23 Jul 2014 07:45:05 -0700

Truck careens into San Leandro liquor store

A driver lost control of his truck late Tuesday night, slamming into the front of a San Leandro liquor store that was open at the time of the crash, authorities said.

No one was injured inside the store, but driver was taken to a local hospital for treatment. The store was heavily damaged.

City officials posted warnings on the House of Liquors located on Manor Blvd., declaring the building unstable because of the damage. A temporary post was put into place by firefighters to support the building’s roof.

“Currently, due to the uncertainly of the stability of the building, we are having to shore it up,” said Alameda County Battalion chief Chuck Palmer.

The crash remained under investigation and police were trying to determine if alcohol or drugs played a role in the crash.

Published: Wed, 23 Jul 2014 07:38:52 -0700

Arrests expected in StubHub cyber attack

Cyber thieves got into more than 1,000 StubHub customers' accounts and fraudulently bought tickets for events through the online ticket reseller, a law enforcement official and the company said.

Arrests were expected in a case that sprawled across international borders, said the official, who wasn't authorized to discuss it ahead of arrests being announced and spoke on the condition of anonymity.

Manhattan District Attorney Cyrus R. Vance Jr. was expected to hold a news conference Wednesday with London and Royal Canadian Mounted Police officials. A spokeswoman for Vance's office declined to comment Tuesday night on the case, which comes amid growing concern about data thieves targeting retailers and other consumer giants.

StubHub, which is based in San Francisco, said that the thieves didn't break through its security — rather, they got account-holders' login and password information from data breaches at other websites and retailers or from key-loggers or other malware on the customers' computers, spokesman Glenn Lehrman said.

The company detected the unauthorized transactions last year, contacted authorities and gave the affected customers refunds and help changing their passwords, he said.

It's unclear whether the digital prowlers then exploited their access to scoop up more information from the compromised accounts. The company and the law enforcement official wouldn't give further details Tuesday.

StubHub, owned by eBay Inc., is the leading digital marketplace for reselling concert, sports, theater and other tickets, offering brokers and fans a way "to buy or sell their tickets in a safe, convenient and highly reliable environment," as its website pledges. The company, which serves as an official secondary ticket market for such entities as Major League Baseball, this spring unveiled plans to become an event producer itself, selling tickets to a handful of its own concerts.

In the last year, major companies such as Target, LinkedIn, eBay and Neiman Marcus have been hacked. Target, the nation's second-largest discounter, acknowledged in December that data connected to about 40 million credit and debit card accounts was stolen as part of a breach that began over the Thanksgiving weekend. Even Goodwill Industries Inc. found itself announcing last month that shoppers' payment card data might have been stolen.

Ticket-sellers also have been targeted. The event ticketing service Vendini last month settled a class action lawsuit related to a data breach in 2013.

Since many people use the same passwords at multiple retailers, hackers who get hold of a password for one site often try it at another, Lehrman said.

Authorities generally advise consumers to protect against possible identity theft from such breaches by keeping close watch on their bank statements and using credit card monitoring services, among other tips.

 

Published: Wed, 23 Jul 2014 07:05:40 -0700

Man beats cats to death with golf club for 'betraying' him

A man in Pennsylvania admitted to fatally beating his two cats with a golf club because he felt "betrayed" after they scratched him.

The Erie Times-News reports 32-year-old Christopher J. Bisbee pleaded guilty Monday to a second-degree misdemeanor of cruelty to animals and faces up to two years in prison when he's sentenced Oct. 7.

The Erie man applied for a first-offenders program that would have placed him on probation without a guilty plea, but was rejected.

>> Read more trending stories  

He told authorities he "struck both cats numerous times with a golf club until they no longer were moving."

A Humane Society officer acting on a tip found the cat carcasses in Bisbee's garbage in June 2013. Several people at Bisbee's residence implicated him before police say he confessed.

Defense attorney Stephen Sebald says Bisbee has "proactively sought mental health counseling" and a report from that doctor will be forwarded to the court before he's sentenced.

—The Associated Press contributed

Published: Wed, 23 Jul 2014 06:07:47 -0700

Sand tunnel collapse kills recent college grad at Calif. beach

Tracks in the sand near the shoreline of Francis State Beach, show the spot where people tried to rescue Adam Pye after a sand tunnel collapsed over the 26-year-old San Lorenzo man Monday afternoon.

His parents and family gathered at their house in San Lorenzo Tuesday, still in shock over the loss of the young man they say had a bright smile and a bright future ahead.

"A perfect son, a perfect brother, a perfect friend...a perfect cousin," said Debra Pye, in tears, holding a photo of her son.

Pye's parents say Adam's trip to the beach with close family friends was supposed to be a well-deserved rest for their hard-working son, who had just graduated June 14th from Cal State East Bay, with a major in business communications.

>> Read more trending stories

His parents say the 26-year-old had been helping friends dig a tunnel about 10 feet deep, when it collapsed about 5:30p.m. Monday.

"The girls came out of their tunnel, his tunnel caved in and they turned around and said, where's Adam, where's Adam?" said Kevin Pye, Adam's father.

The sand had trapped Adam. His father says the girls tried to save him, by holding up his head which was briefly exposed, before more sand gave way.

Friends and strangers on the beach ran to help.

"There were dozens, dozens of people from the beach, men, women and children pulling sand out of this hole," said George Fry, a camper from Utah who also rushed to help dig with his hands.

"You're just grabbing sand a little bit at a time," Fry told Bay Area TV station KTVU.

First responders from the Coastside Fire Protection District arrived about four minutes after the call.

"They were just starting to get to his head when our first crews got there," said Fire Captain Jonathan Cox who was at the scene.

Cox says Adam was unconscious when paramedics managed to clear sand away from his head and open his airway. After 35 minutes of digging, crews managed to pull him out. They performed CPR but were not able to revive him.

Pye's mother says Adam had worked hard since the age of 15, when he got a job selling concessions at the Oakland Coliseum. His parents say their son had worked his way through school, putting in 12-13 hours on the night shift at the Oakland Airport UPS facility and then turning around to attend school during the day.

"That was all he ever did was just school work and finally he graduated to say Mom, finally, now I have some time, I can rest," Debra Pye said.

Fire officials say while many people think of danger from waves and water at the beach, sand is an equal threat.

"It's extremely unstable, sand is in its nature. And it obviously collapsed extremely quickly," Cox said.

Fire officials covered the holes to make sure no one falls in. They say with so many people on the beaches during this season, they hope people will realize the danger that sand can pose.

Published: Wed, 23 Jul 2014 05:46:10 -0700

Police: Woman lived with dead mother for three years

Investigators say Chava Stirn didn’t just live with the body. She did so as if her mother was still alive.

Cops say Stirn posed the body at the dinner table every evening before putting it to bed every night, covers and all.

Neighbors in Brooklyn say they had no idea anything was going on.

It wasn’t until a worker went to search for a leak in the apartment that the horrendous scene was discovered.

When Stirn wouldn’t open the door for workers, they had to break it down. That’s when they saw the body.

“It’s a scene right out of ‘Psycho.’ This is one of the weirdest cases I’ve ever seen,” an officer told the New York Post.

“She may have been living there with the mom’s remains for two or three years. It’s a horrible scene,” they continued.

Police say Stirn was acting “erratically,” and was taken to a hospital for physic evaluation.

More here.  

Published: Wed, 23 Jul 2014 05:15:54 -0700

Giant flying bug with fangs discovered in China

Researchers in China have found what is clearly the most frightening looking insect ... ever. 

What's being called the Giant Dobsonfly has an 8.3-inch wingspan and snake-like fangs. 

It's not entirely clear how much force would have to be applied to kill the dobsonfly or what sound is made by the insect as it is squashed. 

But, we're entirely sure that the sound upon discovering a dobsonfly is a loud shriek, scream or cry. 

How long until this fly is found in the states?

Exactly.

Yahoo News reports:

According to the Insect Museum of West China, an expedition to the outskirts of Chengdu in mid-July returned dobsonflies with 8.3-inch wingspans and "giant snake-like fangs." 

Entomologists say the presence of the giant dobsonfly, native to China and Vietnam, is an indication of clean water nearby.

Large enough to cover the face of a human adult, this scary-looking insect is also known among entomologists as an indicator of water quality, says the museum.

The giant dobsonfly makes its home in bodies of clean water and is highly sensitive to any changes in the water's pH as well as the presence of trace elements of pollutants. If the water is slightly contaminated, the giant dobsonfly will move on to seek cleaner waters. (CNN)

Published: Wed, 23 Jul 2014 05:12:08 -0700

Teen slammed for taking smiling selfie at Auschwitz

While some may find selfies annoying, when do these photographs cross the line into poor taste?

Alabama teen Brianna Mitchell is learning the hard way after a recent trip to Auschwitz, one of the Nazi concentration camps used in World War II. While there, she snapped a smiling photo of herself and posted it on Twitter.

The image went viral and has been retweeted over 4,000 times, according to HLN. Mitchell faced a barrage of criticism, but also had many people supporting her, saying taking a selfie at a memorial is not that big of a deal.

According to the Daily Mail, Mitchell went on the trip in memory of her deceased father, who taught her about the concentration camps. She was happy that she was able to go on a trip that they had planned on taking together.

While Mitchell was initially shocked by the reaction her selfie generated, she now seems to be enjoying all of the social media attention. In subsequent interviews, she continues to defend her actions, claiming she would not do anything differently.

Published: Wed, 23 Jul 2014 04:28:19 -0700

Lost deaf, blind dog rescued from ravine, reunited with owner

Two Pennsylvania police officers are being credited with rescuing a missing and injured dog in Washington County.

Neighbors told WPXI-TV in Pittsburgh that they called police Monday morning after hearing painful barking coming from a ravine.

“It sounded like he was dying. The barks kept getting weaker,” said C.C. Edwards, who called 911.

Edwards said he and other neighbors couldn’t get near the dog because of the treacherous terrain. However, two officers showed up and were determined to save 13-year-old Boo-Boo.

The officers got to Boo-Boo and quickly realized he was injured and that’s why he couldn’t move.

>> Read more trending stories

The officers then started the difficult task of trying to get him out of the ravine without suffering further injury.

“One of the officers was really wiped out. He was sweating and he said, ‘It’s like a sauna down there.’ He didn’t know how the dog made it,” Edwards said.

But Boo-Boo did make it and was reunited with his owner, who thought his missing dog had died.

“I just got down bawling. I was accepting this is it,” said Sean Corcoran.

Corcoran said Boo-Boo, who is deaf and blind, went missing several days ago. He’s very grateful for the officers who helped save his dog.

“He doesn’t get around real well. His hips are going. I think he stumbled and fell,” Corcoran said.

Officials said Boo-Boo had a slipped disc.

Published: Wed, 23 Jul 2014 00:12:53 -0700

Must-see: Viral photo shows dog guarding its dying companion

A picture of a dog standing over its injured companion has gone viral – and now the dog needs a new home.

According to WSB-TV in Atlanta, Georgia man Michael Mason was leaving church when he said he noticed a dog standing on the side of the road. As he looked closer, he said he saw the dog standing over its injured companion. Mason turned back around, snapped one picture and shared it with a friend asking for help. He posted it online and it took off.

“The look on his face. ‘Can someone help me?’ He was watching over him like a guard dog,” Mason said.

>> Read more trending stories

The picture made even more rounds online after "The Walking Dead" actress Kylie Szymanski posted it on her Facebook fan page.

“I never thought it would happen to me (going viral). I wasn’t thinking about it. I was thinking about the dog,” Mason said.

The dog, now named Herman, is at Fulton County Animal Services and he needs a new home. A vet was unable to save Herman’s companion.

“We are grateful someone stopped and cared enough to take a picture and share it to demonstrate the power of a dog's love. And this sweet animal didn’t leave his friend when she was injured,” said Cicley Gay with LifeLine Animal Project, a metro Atlanta shelter that works closely with Fulton County Animal Services.

“They do feel that companionship and when somebody is gone they miss them,” explained Kerry Moyers-Horton, a staff member with Fulton County Animal Services.

WSB-TV reporter Craig Lucie got to know Herman and he says he is a smart and kind Staffordshire Bull Terrier. Herman quickly figured out how to open the back fences at animal control.

He asked Mason if he would consider adopting Herman, and Mason said he would if his wife would let him.

Animal services officials said considering how friendly Herman acts around people, he must have come from someone's home. He is up for adoption, so if you are interested, contact Fulton County Animal Services.

Published: Tue, 22 Jul 2014 23:17:48 -0700

2 Investigates: Victim in fatal fire requested smoke-alarm be fixed weeks before

2 Investigates uncovered new details about the smoke detectors inside a public housing unit where a fire killed a mother and her 3-year-old son in April. According to documents 2 Investigates obtained, the victim submitted a work order weeks prior asking the San Francisco Housing Authority to fix the smoke detector.

Work orders submitted for broken smoke detector

2 Investigates submitted a records request to the San Francisco Housing Authority. According to the records, victim Esther Ionae put in a work order for a broken smoke detector at 76 Brookdale Avenue on March 31, 2014 approximately two weeks before the fire. The fire killed Ionae and her son Santana Williams.

“I think not only that it could have been prevented, I think it should have been prevented and unfortunately I think it may happen again,” said Christopher Dolan, an attorney for Ionae’s family.

The work order granted permission for an electrician to enter the unit even if no one is home.

Still, according to more Housing Authority records obtained by 2 Investigates, the electrician never entered and the smoke detector was not repaired.

Turned away at the door

The San Francisco Housing Authority hired an attorney as well as a private company to investigate the fire.

According to the company’s initial review, an unidentified woman turned the electrician away at the door three times.

“He knocked on the door and he was not allowed access,” said Kevin Cholakian, an attorney for the San Francisco Housing Authority.

Cholakian says the private company, Fire Cause Analysis, discovered three dismantled smoke detectors in a drawer.

The San Francisco Fire Department would not confirm or deny that but a fire department spokesperson told 2 Investigates the smoke detectors “may have been present but not in the place they should have been.”

“Now they're trying to say that they were stuffed in a drawer but they knew back on March 31st they were not working,” said Dolan.

Final fire department report pending

The San Francisco Fire Department is still finalizing its investigative report pending the medical examiner completing the victims’ autopsies.

 

Published: Tue, 22 Jul 2014 22:47:25 -0700

Recent-graduate killed in sand tunnel collapse

Tracks in the sand near the shoreline of Francis State Beach, show the spot where people tried to rescue Adam Pye after a sand tunnel collapsed over the 26-year-old San Lorenzo man Monday afternoon.

His parents and family gathered at their house in San Lorenzo Tuesday, still in shock over the loss of the young man they say had a bright smile and a bright future ahead.

"A perfect son, a perfect brother, a perfect friend...a perfect cousin," said Debra Pye, in tears, holding a photo of her son.

Pye's parents say Adam's trip to the beach with close family friends was supposed to be a well-deserved rest for their hard-working son, who had just graduated June 14th from Cal State East Bay, with a major in business communications.

His parents say the 26-year-old had been helping friends dig a tunnel about 10 feet deep, when it collapsed about 5:30p.m. Monday.

"The girls came out of their tunnel, his tunnel caved in and they turned around and said, where's Adam, where's Adam?" said Kevin Pye, Adam's father.

The sand had trapped Adam. His father says the girls tried to save him, by holding up his head which was briefly exposed, before more sand gave way.

Friends and strangers on the beach ran to help.

"There were dozens, dozens of people from the beach, men, women and children pulling sand out of this hole," said George Fry, a camper from Utah who also rushed to help dig with his hands.

"You're just grabbing sand a little bit at a time," Fry told KTVU.

First responders from the Coastside Fire Protection District arrived about four minutes after the call.

"They were just starting to get to his head when our first crews got there," said Fire Captain Jonathan Cox who was at the scene.

Cox says Adam was unconscious when paramedics managed to clear sand away from his head and open his airway. After 35 minutes of digging, crews managed to pull him out. They performed CPR but were not able to revive him.

Pye's mother says Adam had worked hard since the age of 15, when he got a job selling concessions at the Oakland Coliseum. His parents say their son had worked his way through school, putting in 12-13 hours on the night shift at the Oakland Airport UPS facility and then turning around to attend school during the day.

"That was all he ever did was just school work and finally he graduated to say Mom, finally, now I have some time, I can rest," Debra Pye told KTVU.

Fire officials say while many people think of danger from waves and water at the beach, sand is an equal threat.

"It's extremely unstable, sand is in its nature. And it obviously collapsed extremely quickly," Cox said.

Fire officials covered the holes to make sure no one falls in. They say with so many people on the beaches during this season, they hope people will realize the danger that sand can pose.

Published: Tue, 22 Jul 2014 22:39:53 -0700

'Water Cops' coming to Santa Clara

New enforcement officers will soon be monitoring the water usage of Santa Clara County residents.

The Santa Clara Valley Water District Board Tuesday night unanimously approved half a million dollars to hire up to 10 temporary personnel.

The plan is to have them respond to complaints about water wasters, a position some have referred to as "water cops".  The goal is to help decrease water usage across the county by 20 percent compared to last year.

"It's probably going to take us 30 days to put the plan together and hire the staff and get them trained and out in the field," said Jerry Delapiedra, the district's water use efficiency unit Manager. "So we're looking at probably end of August."

The additional enforcement will be looking for violations outlined by the state, including washing down driveways and sidewalks, using drinking water in a fountain that doesn't recirculate, washing a car using a hose without a shut-off nozzle, and excessive runoff from landscaping.

"Hey it's not a business-as-usual year," said Teresa Alvarado, the district's Deputy Administrative Officer.  "This is an exceptional drought.  We have to take exceptional actions."

Neighbors will be able to call in a complaint or simply upload photos of suspected offenders via the district's "Access Valley Water" app.

The District says it's already getting calls about water wasters and the number doubled in the last day to more than a dozen.

Water officials say while rates will not be going up, the cost ultimately will be passed on to water customers.

Some residents think the new plan is a waste of time and money since the water district can't enforce any fines but only educate customers.

"They have to call someone else to give you a ticket so what's the use of having them come around?" said resident Bob Palacios.

Published: Tue, 22 Jul 2014 22:33:28 -0700

Travelers say they won't let recent events change their plans

At SFO, many overseas travelers tell KTVU they are nervous about flying but say they refuse to allow recent events to change their plans.

The lines at check-in counters are long with summer travelers who say they're aware of world events that threatened the safety of air travel.

Some have tracked the path of their flight online, something they say they've never done before.

"It's rough. I know that security is pretty tight right now. It's a scary thing to think about after everything that has happened," said Kristine Saquilayan, an airline passenger who lives in San Francisco.

The FAA has banned U.S carriers from flying over certain countries and has deemed others potentially unsafe.

"All places where there are tentative governments in place, all under turmoil so not surprising that this is going on," said Mike McCarron.

He's a former U.S navy pilot who worked at SFO for 22 years. He says the FAA is likely to extend its 24 hour ban on flights to Tel Aviv.

"They're working with the FBI and the State Department, CIA , and the military for what information they can get as far as how the hostility is spreading or is there decline - whatever the case may be, " said McCarron.

He says the September 11th terrorist attacks, the missile strike on the Malaysia airliner and the rocket attack near the Tel Aviv airport are a sign of the times we live in.

"It used to be, when I was younger, a hijacker would make a political statement but he kept the people safe and release them and they would on their way. Now they don't care. They don't care about their own safety or anyone else around them so it's definitely a changed world," said McCarron.

Molly Zeiger, 19, of Danville recently returned from her first trip to Israel.

She tells KTVU as soon as her plane landed at the airport in Tel Aviv; she noticed a strong military presence.

And twice during her trip, she said she had to go to bomb shelters because of threats of possible missile strikes.

"We felt the fear. It's the kind of fear that no one should have to go thru," said Zeiger.

McCarron says despite recent world events, air travel is still very safe.

He advises passengers travelling oversees to check with the state department for advisories.

Published: Tue, 22 Jul 2014 22:23:51 -0700