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  1. Puzzle Pieces: Dozier's neglected cemetery yields more bodies than expected, but names are harder to find

    Human Interest

    TAMPA — There wasn't much left of the boys.

     University of South Florida assistant professor Dr. Erin Kimmerle watches over excavation efforts in the Boot Hill cemetery at Arthur G. Dozier School for Boys in Marianna, Fla. on February 5, 2014. [EDMUND D. FOUNTAIN   |   Times]
  2. Ground Truth: In Dozier's neglected cemetery, a search for lost boys and the reasons why they died

    Human Interest

    MARIANNA — The darkness started to fall on the pines and the kudzu-covered fields and on the little cemetery when a thundercloud erupted in the distance, and everybody down in the graves stopped digging …

    The remains of a child, later identified as George Owen Smith, wait to be loaded into a van at the Boot Hill cemetery on the campus of the Arthur G. Dozier School for Boys. [EDMUND D. FOUNTAIN   |   Times]
  3. Federal report says IRS could do more to regulate charities


    The IRS doesn't have the manpower to go after charities that flout the law, and it could do more to help state regulators target crooked operators, according to a federal watchdog report made public today.

    Isolated hundred dollar cancer ribbon on a white background.
  4. PolitiFact's Lie of the Year for 2014: Distorted claims on Ebola virus


    Thomas Eric Duncan left Monrovia, Liberia, on Sept. 19 for Dallas. Eleven days later, doctors diagnosed Duncan with Ebola.

    Eight days after that, he was dead.

    Jeff Hulbert of Annapolis, Md., holds up a sign Oct. 24 in front of the White House. Hulbert was calling for a mandatory quarantine for people who have returned from Ebola-affected countries in West Africa. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s guidelines on the issue of quarantines were disputed by the governors of New York and New Jersey.
  5. In Pahokee, football serves as a way out

    Human Interest

    PAHOKEE — On the day he thought would change everything, Fred left home early while his siblings, nieces and nephews slept. He skipped breakfast, not even a Pop-Tart. His stomach was tight with excitement.

    The summer before his junior year at Pahokee High, Fred decided to focus on raising his grades, and to get away from friends who might be a bad influence. So he transferred to Everglades Prep charter school across town. He often stayed in class to work and ate a late lunch by himself.
  6. Tampa homeless program uses unpaid, destitute residents as steady labor force, revenue source

    Special Topics

    TAMPA — Before every Tampa Bay Buccaneers home game, dozens of men gather in the yard at New Beginnings of Tampa, one of the city's largest homeless programs.

    New Beginnings of Tampa residents walk into Raymond James Stadium on September 7, 2014 in Tampa. The men, many of them homeless, work concessions in exchange for shelter and food. [EVE EDELHEIT   |   Times]
  7. An item from the past renews memories for World War II veteran

    Human Interest

    NEW PORT RICHEY — In the shade of the screened-in garage, on the faded floral cushion of an old patio chair, Ed McCarron waits for the mailman. There isn't much else to do each day. ¶ He's almost 90. He can barely see, can hardly hear. He can't drive. His world is contained: a phone call from his daughter, …

    Ed McCarron was a U.S. Marine private first class with the 11th Regiment, gun division, on Guadalcanal in the Solomon Islands during World War II. Here he sits in his New Port Richey home.
  8. At end of newsman's career, 'family movie' celebrates tiny town where John Wilson got started

    Human Interest

    By Jay Cridlin | Times Staff Writer


    Longtime WTVT-Ch. 13 news anchor John Wilson stands outside his family’s home in Big Stone Gap, Va. The bridge leading to the property is named for his father.
  9. FSU shooter's friends tried to get help for him months before the shooting


    When she met him in the parking lot, the sight of him jarred her. Gone was the dapper, carefully dressed man who had taken her on dates for most of the past year.

    Myron May, the FSU shooter, stayed here in Wewahitchka during the three weeks before the shooting. May, far right, is engrossed in a book while friends socialize.
  10. Trauma fees growing across the nation at 'absurd' rate


    Ben Taub General Hospital in Houston runs one of America's most distinguished trauma centers, taking on thousands of severely injured patients every year.

  11. Natalie Khawam, Jill Kelley's twin sister, opens up about effects of Petraeus scandal

    Human Interest

    TAMPA — The scandal swept through Tampa society like a late-season hurricane, taking down no less than the retired four-star general running the CIA.

    Natalie Khawam, left, Gen. David Petraeus, Scott and Jill Kelley and Holly Petraeus attend a party Jan. 30, 2010, at the Kelleys’ home on Bayshore Boulevard in Tampa to watch the Gasparilla parade.
  12. 19th Florida panther killed by car, tying all-time record


    On a Collier County road on Thursday, biologists found a female Florida panther that had been run over by a car or truck. The death of that 3- or 4-year-old panther marks the 19th roadkill death of one of Florida's official state animals this year.

    Cliff Coleman photographed a Florida panther on the Black Boar Ranch, a hunting preserve he manages which located just south of the newly created wildlife passage called the Lone Ranger Track, east of LaBelle. [Photo by Cliff Coleman]
  13. Heroin gaining ground among addicts in Tampa Bay


    Stephanie Otero sat on a bucket behind a duplex with a needle and two plastic bags of heroin.

    Stephanie Otero, 23, right, holding her 4-month-old son, Matthew, talks to Julia Prince, 68, of Tampa, before worship service starts at City Life Church in north Tampa on Oct. 22. Otero got treatment for her addiction to heroin and Roxicodone.
  14. Data shows wrong-way crashes aren't a new phenomenon in Tampa Bay (w/video)


    TAMPA — In February, four University of South Florida fraternity brothers died after a wrong-way driver slammed into their car on Interstate 275. Two weeks later, a man driving the wrong way in the same area killed himself when he smashed into a box truck. In August, another man died in a wrong-way crash on the …

    Chase Kaleb Leveille of Riverview died in this wrong-way crash on I-275 in February.
  15. Streams of checks from big donors break records in Florida

    State Roundup

    TALLAHASSEE — It's now official: This year's state elections are not only the costliest in Florida history, but are also the nation's most expensive.

    Months of mudslinging and millions of dollars in negative campaign ads comes to fruition Tuesday: Florida's Election Day. [iStock]
  16. Amy Hepker embraces transgender identity, but at great cost

    Human Interest


    At about midnight, Amy Hepker parks her 1993 Nissan 200SX directly under a light pole in the very back of a strip mall parking lot. A skittish little black cat she named Shadow jumps in the back window to watch her grab a few extra layers of clothes from the trunk.

    She feels old.

    Amy Hepker, 58, is transgender, but is now homeless and struggling to find a job and love as a woman. But she has faith.
  17. A girl falls for her teacher …

    Human Interest

    TAMPA — Addison Allen was 16, about to start her senior year at Tampa's Robinson High School, when the police called. They wanted to talk about the rumors.

    Addison Allen, 19, in her dorm at New College of Florida in Sarasota. She says that during her junior year at Tampa’s Robinson High School, she had a sexual relationship with her history teacher, Robert Lunsford. Lunsford denies it, saying Allen is lying because she was obsessed with him.
  18. At college football's lowest rung, games are matter of faith and creative financing


    Earlier this fall, someone posted a question on reddit.com: Are there two fake schools operating on the periphery of college football? One was called the College of Faith, in Charlotte, N.C., and the other was called the University of Faith, here in St. Petersburg.

    Anthony Givins, head football coach at the University of Faith, holds practice Oct. 9 in St. Petersburg. The school is not affiliated with any recognized college sports governing body.
  19. Perspective: On the run but not yet running


    On paper it is the ultimate team play: Two of the biggest names in Republican politics lending their imprimatur to midterm candidates across the country, showing up at rallies, dinners and raising money. All for the common good of the Grand Old Party.

  20. Maxwell: Florida's vital challenge: to save the Everglades (w/video)


    EVERGLADES NATIONAL PARK — The health of Florida's environment never should have become a partisan issue, but we keep electing officials who make it partisan. As a result, we see the continued degradation of our water and land and serious threats to many plants and animals.

    Historically, the Everglades ecosystem encompassed 18,000 square miles. Because of urban
and agricultural development, half of that remains. Scientists call it the “remnant Everglades.”