The daily Nebraskan. ([Lincoln, Neb.) 1901-current, August 22, 1996, Page 2, Image 2

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    News Digest
Oklahoma police officer still trying
to regain rank after slapping teen-ager
STILLWATER, Okla.—Former Stillwater Police Sgt. John Jerkins is
still fighting to get his former rank back eight months being demoted for
slapping her teen-aged daughter’s boyfriend in the face.
In January, Jerkins got up in the middle of the night and found his
daughter and her boyfriend having sex on the couch, he snapped, and
slapped the young man in the face.
The officer was demoted and had his pay docked, despite a certain
amount of understanding from the governor on down.
“I would have slapped him a lot harder,” Gov. Frank Keating said.
An arbitrator is weighing Jerkins’ appeal. The city, which upheld his
demotion to patrolman—docking him $705 in pay and $350 in pension
benefits every month—is considering a settlement.
“This isn’t just about me,” Jerkins said. “It’s about parents and what
their duties and responsibilities are and what they can legally do in their
own home.”
While prosecutors deemed it assault and battery—one specialist said
the boy suffered a broken nose—they didn’t pursue charges because of
doubts they could win a conviction. Even the parents of the boy, who has
not been identified, declined to press charges.
Jerkins’ daughter later broke up cm her own with the boy shortly after
the incident and apologized to her parents, Jerkins said.
“All I can say Is that she’s a good girl and I love her dearly,” he said.
“She learned a lesson out of this thing.”
New Nasa satellite launched Wednesday
to study polar luminosity phenomena
ellite from a jet Wednesday on a mission to fly through the Northern and
Southern Lights and study die luminous electromagnetic phenomena above
both poles.
“Everything is going nominally, as expected,” said NASA spokesman
Carl Polesky.
The 400-pound Fast Auroral Snapshot Explorer was carried aboard a
Pegasus rocket launched from the belly of an L-1011 jet 60 miles off the
California coast. About eight minutes later, it vaulted into orbit.
Because the satellite’s orbit is designed in the shape of a narrow oval,
it runs the risk of passing too close to earth and burning up, NASA spokes
man Bruce Buckingham said.
“Its lifetime is limited,” he said.
NASA scientists hope the satellite can remain in orbit as long as five
years, but said they would be satisfied with much less.
“If we get one year out of it, then it’s a success for us,” Buckingham
Wyoming Democratic Sonata winner
easily beats space tower advocate
CHEYENNE, Wyo.—Former Secretary of State Kathy Karpan, who
now challenges Republican Mike Enzi for Wyoming’s Senate seat, re
cently won the state’s Democratic Senate primary by a 6-to-l margin.
Karpan had an easy time winning the race, being declared the winner
soon after the polls closed. She received 86 percent of the vote, while her
only rival, Mickey Kalinay, received 14 percent.
Kalinay’s sole campaign issue was advocating the construction of a
22,000-mile tower reaching into space.
Karpan praised Kalinay fa- running.
“It was just democracy in action for a guy who’s got an issue and gets
out there and makes a point,” she said.
Dole’s public image occasionally
affected by World War II injury
Presidential nominee
has found ways to deal
with crippling wounds.
DETROIT — It was a picture-per
fect campaign moment: Bob Dole, sit
ting with a gaggle of school children
at his feet, nodding along as parents
praised his education record. Until one
of the fidgety boys tapped Dole’s
knee, asked for an autograph and
started the other kids scrambling for
scrap paper.
Dole clumsily balanced papers on
his knee to write, then held an un
capped marker in his mouth to pass
back the signed scraps.
With only limited use of one arm,
autographs don’t comegracefully for
the Republican presidential candidate.
Somesituations can be near-calami
At a Fourth of July parade outside
Chicago, a man thrust his toddler at
Dole, who buckled at the knees and
nearly dropped the child before a Se
cret Service agent rushed behind him
to support the weight.
“I’m not supposed to lift anything
real heavy with my left arm,” he later
explained, “I don’t even do suitcases
or things like that.”
Dole eyes with envy footage of ri
val President Clinton tossing the first
pitch on baseball’s opening day, or
zipping through a crowd shaking
hands two at a time.
Dole said he did not feel handi
capped, though.
“It just takes a little longer and
there are some things you can’t do,”
he said.
It was in Italy in World War II that
Dole, then a 21-year-old Army lieu
tenant, was hit by an enemy shell. It
shattered his right shoulder, fractured
his neck and spine, and left him hos
pitalized for 39 months.
His recovery — learning to walk
again and dress himself, exhaustively
pulling at homemade weights to force
his left arm to work — has become
campaign lore, though Dole and his
staff once were loathe to speak of it.
“It’s sort of a two-edged sword,”
Dole said of his new, often awkward
openness — a campaign strategy
meant to show voters the candidate’s
human, heroic side.
His right arm useless, Dole learned
to write left-handed despite having
limited sensation in those fingers. He
typically signs autographs with per
sonal aide Mike Glassner holding out
a thick stack of folders like a portable
It can be painstakingly slow, but he
rarely demurs — except when asked
to sign an American flag or the front
of a young lady’s T-shirt. He’s been
known to hand back autographed cam
paign posters with an apology: “I don’t
write so good.”
“About the first time somebody asks
for an autograph, that starts a stam
pede,” Dole said. “You kind of hold
your breath and think ‘How am I go
ing to get all the way through?’”
Getting through can take elaborate
choreography. In staging campaign ral
lies, aides must plot Dole’s path so that
when he leaves the platform — down
stairs specially equipped with left-hand
railings—he canangle along the rope
line of supporters from left to right, his
right shoulder faced away from the
reaching crowd.
As he worked an enthusiastic Mi
ami gathering recently, Florida Rep.
Ileana Ros-Lehtinen tugged at his right
arm, trying to pull him into the frame
of a supporter’s waiting camera.
Glassner, Dole’s omnipresent aide,
quickly swatted her hand away as the
congresswoman glared.
Secret Service agents share duty
pushing away the arms that naturally
clap Dole’s shoulder while posing for
“You have to do it in a way that you
don’t offend anyone because they just
don’t know,” Dole said. A shoulder pad
in his suits masks the injury and he
constantly grips a pen in his right hand
— “a barrier,” he calls it — to warn
Campaign strategy aside, whenever
a curious supporter asks why Dole
doesn’t shake with his right, he replies
casually, “Oh, I’ ve just been shaking a
lot of hands today.”
He’s had to turn down Little League
invitations because a baseball, for
Dole, is both difficult to pitch and awk
ward to sign. He must sit down, grip it
between his knees and leverage his arm
against his thigh.
When it came time to launch a
book-signing promotion for his up
dated autobiography, Dole took three
hours one day to pre-sign 700 adhe
sive labels so as not to hold up the lines
he anticipated at book stores.
“You know, I have a very short
name,” he joked. “If I were Nelson
Rockefeller, I’d be in trouble.”
Geologist gives details ol now-lamous
meteorite's discovery in Antarctica
WASHINGTON—Roberta Score
knew the rock was extraordinary when
she spotted it on an ice field among the
Allan Hills ofAntarctica.
But she didn’t consider that it could
be a messenger of life from Mars.
“It was just lying on the surface,”
Score said. “I always thought that rock
was special.”
It has taken almost 12 years for sci
ence to show just how special that rock
is. Known as Allan Hills 84001, the
potato-sized specimen is the Mars
meteorite that NASA researchers be
lieve may contain evidence of ancient
Martian life.
Scientists around the world are now
seeking pieces of the meteorite for
study, hoping to prove or disprove the
presence of life.
But Score said the day she found
the rock, Dec. 27,1984, the most strik
ing thing about it was its size and cola*.
Score, a geologist who works un
der contract with the Antarctic program
of the National Science Foundation,
was on her first expedition to the South
Polar continent. She was part of a team
of seven that was cruising on snowmo
biles among the Allan Hills looking for
At the time, Score said, she was
awe-struck at the vast field of feature
less, blue ice.
“There was pure ice with no rocks
around,” she recalls. “Anything that
you found in this particular ice field
was a meteorite.”
In one area, there were 15-foot-high
pinnacles of ice, carved by the dry po
lar winds from ice that was thousands
and thousands of years old.
iney are luce irozen waves or ice
sculptures,” Score said. “We were just
Just as they were leaving the pin
nacle area, her eye captured a spot of
color. It was the rock that is so famous
The National Science Foundation
meteorite exploration program collects
hundreds of meteorites each season
from the Antarctica. Many, like Allan
Hills 84001, have lain untouched in the
ice for tens of thousands of years.
Ralph Harvey, a Case Western Re
serve University geologist and leader
of the annual search for meteorites, said
that the Antarctic is an ideal place to
look for rocks falling from space.
“If you wanted to find things that
fall from the sky, you need to lay a great
big white sheet and then watch it for a
while,” he said.
Scottsbluff hospital saves life of chimp
SCOTTSBLUFF — There was a strange pa
tient in surgery at Regional West Medical Cen
ter: hospital staff helped to save a chimpanzee
with a lung problem.
Hospital staff did the surgery free for the 36
year-old chimp named Pani on Sunday at the
medical center because it had the $50,000 in
equipment needed for the operation.
Surgical nurses Julie McDonald and Christy
Jay said they treated the surgery as they would
any other.
“It was just like a furry small person,” Jay said.
The chimp had been near death at the River
side Zoo before the surgery. Zoo Director Caroline
Meek said Pani had been ill for two weeks and
antibiotics didn’t work. Chest X-rays proved in
conclusive until Meek brought them to Pat
Eastman in the hospital's radiological department.
Eastman immediately identified a pneumothorax,
or collapsed lung.
When a chest tube could not inflate the lung
enough, hospital staff offered to perform the sur
gery needed to re-inflate and repair the area in
the right lung where air sacs had ruptured. The
hospital performed the procedure free of charge
and all doctors and surgical staff donated their
Dr. Tom White, who performed the surgery
with Dr. LloydWesterbuhr, said the congenital
defect in Pani’s lung had created a leak in the top
of the lung. Doctors used a small scope inserted
in the chimp’s chest to cut and staple the dam
aged portion of the lung and seal the leak.
The relatively new procedure has been used
only five or six times on humans at Regional West,
White said, so it probably hasn’t been used much
on chimpanzees. He said the chimp’s anatomy is
almost identical to a human chest.
Linda Lund, operating room supervisor, said
there was no other surgery scheduled for Sunday
afternoon and there was no disruption at the hos
Photo of Broyhill Fountain and the Nebraska Union Baza by Mami Speck
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