Author’s Archive: Gregory Berry

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AMES, Iowa — In their first ten games, mostly without their top offensive weapon, Iowa State is 8-2.  Now fans of the cardinal and gold may be one step closer to a team at full strength with Lindell Wigginton and Solomon Young.

“Wednesday if everything goes status quo as it is now, they’ll go half court.  Not up and down but live contact in the half court and evaluate them from there,” said head coach Steve Prohm.

Despite the winning record, the absence of Young and Wigginton, who was named preseason all-Big 12, was glaringly evident against the Iowa Hawkeyes.  The Cyclones were outrebounded by twenty and the team shot just 46% from the field.  Wigginton’s 17 points per game from a year ago would be a welcomed site for the team this Saturday against Drake in the Big Four Classic in Des Moines.  Prohm said, “I think Lindell will add a huge boost to our team. I think it makes our perimeter deeper, gives guys like Nick a rest and really Lindell brings experience and scoring punch for our team, another playmaker.  Solomon, when he’s healthy gives us an enforcer around the basket we need.  He’s a guy we missed the other night at Iowa. Just his toughness and physicallness around the basket.”

 

DES MOINES, Iowa–Iowa Department of Human Services Director Jerry Foxhoven gave a budget hearing Monday for the coming year that used few numbers but expressed optimism.

“We are a very efficient organization,” Foxhoven proclaimed during his presentation before Governor Kim Reynolds, Acting Lt. Governor Adam Gregg and top staff.

He added of his department’s goal, “Trying to focus on outcomes to improve the health of Iowans and create more predictable and sustainable Medicaid budget. There’s a lot of debate about that over the years. I know that you’ve heard it. But really the last couple of years, we have really made this much more sustainable, much more dependable and delivered much better services.”

In the documents that accompanied his presentation, Foxhoven requested $1,782,644,841, a two percent increase in general funds for the next fiscal year. Nearly $27 million of that $35 million increase would go to private companies that have taken over Medicaid delivery services.

A state audit found that privatized Medicaid will save $126 million this year, about half of what former Governor Terry Branstad once estimated. 

Privatized Medicaid has drawn repeated criticism from Iowans who contend cost savings have resulted from decreased services and delayed payments to providers.

Foxhoven said that fewer Iowans depend on his department’s services these days, something he credits to an improving state economy.

MADISON COUNTY, Iowa — We are waiting to learn the condition of a Madison County hunter shot in an accidental shooting Sunday morning.

The Madison County Sheriff’s Office says 39-year-old Ronald Butler was hunting with two other adults around 8:40 a.m. when he dropped his shotgun getting out of a vehicle. The gun went off and struck him.

Authorities say he was still conscious when first responders arrived to take him to the hospital, but they have not said how he is doing after getting flown to Des Moines for treatment.

 

MARION COUNTY, Iowa — One person is dead following a hunting accident in Marion County.

The Iowa Department of Natural Resources says it happened around 4:30 p.m. Sunday at Lake Red Rock.

The identity of person and the specific circumstances around the shooting have yet to be released.

The DNR is investigating the incident.

 

 

DES MOINES, Iowa — Des Moines police are searching for an armed robber.

The incidence occurred just before 9 p.m. Saturday night in the 3300 block of 61st St.

The victim says he was robbed at gunpoint while standing on his front porch.

Officers brought in a K9 unit but were unable to locate the suspect.

Investigators are now checking for fingerprints left on the porch to identify the gunman.

URBANDALE, Iowa — When Mrs. Claus was growing up she never had a Santa who could speak her language.

“When I grew up I had to go to see a Santa that didn’t know sign language and the other kids in line would make fun of me because of my speech,” Mrs. Claus said. “I never wanted to see Santa after that.”

Now, she is helping make sure every child has the opportunity to experience the magic of Christmas at the Special Santa event in Urbandale.

“It’s kind of cool that kids can see that he does know different languages not just English. So like, Santa knows maybe French, maybe German you never know,” Mrs. Claus said.

But Santa’s special talents didn’t end there. Kids with a wide range of special healthcare needs were able to get one-on-one time with their own St. Nick who knew exactly how to interact with every child, like Miles Fredericks, who has visual and hearing impairments.

“A lot of things startle Miles. So when you have a Santa that understands the impairments and is slow and gentle and is not startling and Mrs. Claus was able to warm Miles up to the touch,” Rita Fredericks, Miles’ Mom, said.

For James Haugh, just some extra time to talk with Santa made all the difference.

“He loves having people talk with him and as you can see he’s very happy and it’s a nice opportunity for a more one-on-one experience,” James’ Mom, Ellen Haugh said.

URBANDALE, Iowa — Get those packages ready! According to the United States Postal Service, the busiest mailing and shipping week starts on December 17.

Abbey Sires. who helps run an online jewelry business, said she makes a trip or several to her local post office, “All day every day we are back and forth.”

Sires said she is sending thousands of pieces of jewelry on Friday in hopes the pieces make it to their destinations before the busiest mailing and shipping week of the year.

“They are Christmas presents for a lot of people actually. We sell on Amazon so we’re shipping all of this to amazon and then they’ll go out from there,” Sires said.

With 20 percent more packages going in and out than previous years, postal workers said they are working until late in the evening to make sure presents arrive on time.

“They need to make sure that we can see their address. When they are out in the dark, it’s really hard to read the house address. So if they can leave the porch light on that would help a lot,” Natalie Welter, with USPS, said.

There are also some popular gift items that can’t be mailed through USPS.

“We can’t mail perfume, no tobacco products or alcohol. Lithium batteries, you need to make sure that they are installed correctly into the device and powered off. Any other type of battery needs to be removed from the device or shipped in the manufacturer’s original packaging,” Sherry Grandberg, with USPS, said.

In order to prevent package thefts, postal workers said it’s best to specify delivery instructions on the USPS website and check your front porch multiple times a day.

“So we have extra people come and deliver nothing but parcels. So sometimes you might see us come to your house two or three times day because of the volume we have in the back we Can’t get it all sorted at once,” welter said.

But most importantly, Abbey Sires said mailing packages early and on time makes all the difference for the Christmas season.

“On time, Oh it’s detrimental to our company if we don’t. I mean we have to get them in and out as quickly as we can just to beat the holiday rush and everything just to get them to amazon on time,” Sires said.

Christmas shipping deadlines:

  • For packages going to military members overseas they must go out before Dec. 11.
  • Priority Mail Express needs to be mailed by Dec. 22.
  • Priority Mail and First Class Mail needs to be sent by Dec. 20.
  • USPS Retail Ground needs to be mailed by Dec. 14.

DES MOINES, Iowa –Des Moines firefighters spent the frigid overnight hours on the scene of a house fire in the neighborhood near Roosevelt High School.

Two people living there made it out of the home, but they were sent to the hospital with burn injuries.

The fire started just before 1 a.m. at 825 41st Street. That’s across from the Des Moines Playhouse.

A neighbor says the man woke up to the flames and smoke and got his wife out of the house. He then ran next door for help.

Neighbor Grant Wilson said, “I got a banging on my window. Somebody was yelling, and I didn’t know what it was. I came my front door, I looked outside and didn’t see anything. I looked out my bedroom window, and I went back to my room and I called 911. And then I yelled outside, and then I finally heard my name. He said there’s a fire.”

The house suffered extensive damage. Investigators are now looking into the cause of that fire.

IOWA CITY, Iowa — At first look the final in this year’s Cy-Hawk showdown may have given the home team a victory for the fourteenth time in sixteen meetings but it also showed there is no downplaying of much this game means to the players on the court.   Iowa State broke into the game with an early 6-2 lead in a hostile environment but the Hawkeyes seemed unfazed and poised to feed off their home crowd.  Isaiah Moss caught fire from beyond the arc early and notched eighteen of his twenty points in the first half alone.  A put-back dunk by Tyler Cook before time expired in the first half gave the Hawkeyes a 45-38 edge at the break.

In the second half it was more of the same for Iowa.  Tyler Cook took over scoring a game high twenty-six points to go along with ten boards to help lead the Hawks over Iowa State 98-84.  Joe Weiskamp gutted out an ankle injury to chip in seven points and Nicholas Baer helped pour in fourteen points off the bench.  The Hawkeyes bench outscored the Cyclones bench 34-14.

For the Cyclones, they saw stellar play from Talen Horton-Tucker who led the team with 21 points. Marial Shayok was a difference maker and added 19 points but ISU shot just twenty percent from three and just twelve of twenty from the free throw line.

Emotions boiled over as the final buzzer sounded and the teams had to be separated without a final game ending handshake.

DES MOINES, Iowa–  A WWII veteran is being honored Friday for Pearl Harbor Remembrance Day.

Leo Greenwood from Iowa died back in 2005 and 13 years later his name is being added to the Pearl Harbor WWII Memorial Wall in Des Moines.

The wall was built nearly 30 years ago.

“This is the first time that we have ever added a name,” Mary Vanhorn with AMVets Iowa said.

Until recently there were 511 names etched into it.

“For the last six months we have gone through a verification process to make sure he rightfully should have been on here,” Vanhorn said.

Seaman First Class Leo Greenwood is the 512 name to be added.

“It was empty, and we were able to get the funding to get his name added to the wall,” Vanhorn said.

Greenwood’s name will be unveiled Friday during a ceremony to honor all those who served in WWII.

“We thought it would be nice to do it in conjunction with Pearl Harbor Day we didn’t realize President Bush was going to pass away- this is good timing to honor those veterans from WWII,” Vanhorn said.

Greenwood served 77 years ago when Japan bombed Pearl Harbor.

Greenwood was aboard the USS West Virginia when it sank.

“He swam below flaming water to get to shore along with a number of other survivors,” Vanhorn said.

Greenwood’s is believed to be the last WWII veteran from Iowa to be added to the wall, it signifies the end of an era.

No word about why Greenwood’s name was not added back when the wall was built.

The event is Friday at the WWII Memorial in Des Moines it starts at 11:40 a.m.