In the wind-swept prairie called Tornado Alley, the scene is eerily familiar: Homes smashed to splinters. Trees and telephone poles snapped like twigs. Piles of bricks, overturned cars and dazed survivors sifting through rubble in search of a precious photo or heirloom. A town in ruins.
As authorities suggested residents of a northeastern North Dakota city flee their homes earlier this week in case a rain-swollen dam burst, Daryl Thompson hurriedly prepared meals at his Main Street cafe for the emergency workers who would stay behind.
Gun owners in the only state still banning concealed weapons would win that right under a plan approved by the Illinois House on Friday, but the governor and other powerful Democrats oppose the plan because it would wipe out local gun ordinances _ including Chicago's ban on assault weapons.
After lengthy and wrenching debate, local leaders of the Boy Scouts of America have voted to open their ranks to openly gay boys for the first time, but heated reactions from the left and right made clear that the BSA's controversies are far from over.
A truck hauling an oversized load of drilling equipment hit an overhead bridge girder on the major route between Seattle and Canada, sending a section of the interstate into the river below as the driver watched the structure collapse in his rearview mirror.
With a growing sexual assault epidemic staining the military, President Barack Obama urged U.S. Naval Academy graduates Friday to remember their honor depends on what they do when nobody is looking and said the crime has "no place in the greatest military on earth."
After living nearly 20 years in their one-story brick home, Sherry and Larry Wells finally won the lottery _ for a state rebate on a home storm shelter, that is. A contractor finished installing the concrete bunker beneath the slab of their garage in early May. About three weeks later, the shelter saved their lives when a tornado that killed 24 people tore through their neighborhood.