Â Johnson County: At least 20,000 affected by water main break
Merriam Â A water main break in Johnson County Thursday closed nearly 30 schools, forced a hospital to bring in ice and bottled water and disrupted service to between 20,000 and 30,000 customers.
Water pressure dropped after a 24-inch main broke about 5 a.m. Water was restored to the area by mid-afternoon. The water is safe for bathing but residents were told to boil it for one minute before cooking, drinking or brushing teeth.
Byron Johnson, general manager of Water District No. 1, said officials believe that bolts holding the line together had corroded and broken. He said the line had been installed in 1977.
The Shawnee Mission school district canceled classes at almost 30 schools, many of which were to remain closed today.
Shawnee Mission Medical Center had no water for about three hours.
Â Crime: Weather vane of KFC icon reported missing to police
Colonel Sanders is no longer spinning in the breeze in Rudy Neugebauer's yard.
A nearly 5-foot-tall iron weather vane bearing the likeness of the one-time chicken kingpin disappeared from Neugebauer's yard in the 400 block of Arkansas Street.
Neugebauer got the Col. Sanders weather vane about a year ago from an acquaintance who once managed a KFC store.
The weather vane is iron and about an inch thick, Neugebauer said. The likeness of the colonel shows him holding up his cane and can be seen on both sides.
Neugebauer doesn't know when the weather vane disappeared. He reported it missing a few days ago to Lawrence Police.
Neugebauer said he welcomed calls at 841-8197 from anyone who might know the weather vane's whereabouts.
Â Rally: Light of Hope 2002 aims to raise awareness of abuse
Thousands of lights strung Thursday night from the gazebo in South Park drew attention to an epidemic that event organizers say many people aren't aware exists on such a large scale.
The lights represented children Â 300 in Douglas County and 13,000 statewide Â who have been victims of abuse or neglect.
In the photo above, Melba Towle, Lawrence, examines decorated T-shirts strung around the gazebo.
About 60 people turned out for Light of Hope 2002, an event organized by Douglas County CASA, Citizen Review Board, Kaw Valley Center, Rape Victim-Survivor Service, Women's Transitional Care Services and Kappa Alpha Theta.
Â Gasoline prices: Pump Patrol seeks best deal
The Journal-World has found a gasoline price as low as $1.32 at Conoco at Sixth Street and Crestline Drive and the Citgo stations at Ninth and Iowa streets and at 920 N. Second St.
If you find a lower price, call us at 832-7154. Be prepared to leave the name and address of the business and the price. Or go to www.ljworld.com/section/gasoline to join our Pump Patrol board.