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Students deliver thank you letters to healthcare workers in St. Louis County

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Students deliver thank you letters to healthcare workers in St. Louis County

ST. LOUIS COUNTY, Mo. — Elementary school students in St. Louis County are showing their appreciation for healthcare workers by writing them letters of gratitude.

“Amazing, superheroes, awesome, excellent” — That’s how fourth-graders from Rose Acres Elementary School in the Pattonville School District describe the healthcare workers inside SSM Health Depaul Hospital in Bridgeton. On Tuesday, they had a chance to show them how much they meant in person.

“Thank you very much,” Seth Lovell, the Chief Nursing Officer of SSM Health Depaul Hospital said while a student handed him a handwritten letter.

The students are learning how to write letters during their writing unit. Mixing that skill with kindness month, the students decided to write letters for healthcare workers in their community. They were able to bring that skill to life as they handed the letters personally to the healthcare heroes Tuesday afternoon.

“Their kindness challenge was to be appreciative and say thank you to people around them, and they took the initiative to think about the healthcare workers here at DePaul and how they ultimately help to keep us at school,” Grave Burgos, a fourth-grade teacher said.

Kayla Newsome was one of the more than a dozen fourth-graders who took the time to write a letter to the healthcare workers and deliver it Tuesday. “It felt good to help and give somebody something that will mean a lot to them,” Newsome said.

“We had a lot of different emotions coming from our caregivers here. Some were laughing at some of the jokes that were in the letters, and some were really moved by the gesture from those in our community especially those in our local schools,” Lovell said. “A lot of focus on health care workers and service workers were really front-loaded.”

“Getting to hand out the letters that they worked really hard on is something they are going to remember forever,” Kirstie Hummert, a fourth-grade teacher said.

It’s a lifelong memory made and a boost these heroes needed.

“We often refer to caregiver burnout as an equation, of stress and that divided by support. We’ve seen the stress maintain or get higher and I think some of the focus from the support perspective has dwindled,” Lovell said.

He said a kind gesture like this will mean a lot to those still on the front lines.

“All of the education and the academics is important but how they felt and they make others feel is really what’s important to us,” Mary Spitzmiller, one of the fourth-grade teachers said.

The CFO read one letter aloud Tuesday:

“Dear healthcare worker,

Thank you for sacrificing the time with your families to save our families. I appreciate you for keeping the community strong and healthy, I’m thankful for saving our lives when we need it. Thanks for caring for us when we need it most. Thank you for making a difference every single day, we appreciate the hard work you guys are doing for our families. You make the world a better place and its because you’re in it. Keep it up you’re doing great

Smiley face, Sincerely (student name).”

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Wisconsin couple kills bear that attacked them in their home

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Ravens kicker Justin Tucker’s record-breaking kick honored as NFL’s Best Moment of the Year

MEDFORD, Wis. (AP) — A Wisconsin couple say they killed a bear that attacked them inside their home after they spotted it eating from their bird feeder.

The Taylor County Sheriff’s office said the attack happened around 11 p.m. Friday at a home near Medford in north-central Wisconsin. The couple told authorities that the bear charged through a window after they yelled at it to go away.

Both the husband and wife were injured before they were able to stab the bear with a kitchen knife. Eventually, the man was able to grab a firearm and kill the animal.

The man and woman were treated at a hospital for several bites and other injuries before being released. The couple’s children were asleep in their bedrooms at the time and were not injured.

The sheriff’s office said the bear was an adult female, and one cub was seen running off as the bear ran toward the home. State wildlife officials took the bear for testing. Authorities have not specified what kind of bear it was.

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Following draft combine, what comes next for Orlando Magic with No. 1 pick?

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Following draft combine, what comes next for Orlando Magic with the No. 1 pick?

Considering the Orlando Magic’s draft lottery history, nothing is easy during the scouting process that culminates with the NBA draft in New York.

But when taking into account what lies ahead for them, the easier part is behind the Magic.

Orlando landing the No. 1 pick in the June 23 draft gave the Magic full control. Now they have the pressure — which they welcome — of making sure they choose the right player.

“We have more work to do,” general manager John Hammond said on In The Zone with Brandon Kravitz. “Evaluation of watching these guys a little more thoroughly, a little more succinctly. Most importantly, a chance to actually spend time with them, get to know them, run them through a battery and find out everything we can.”

The Magic will start hosting workouts at their facility for prospects over the next few weeks, giving them a chance to make more in-depth evaluations than they did during the draft combine in Chicago — where many of the top prospects didn’t take part in scrimmages, on-court drills or measurements.

Duke’s Paolo Banchero, Gonzaga’s Chet Holmgren and Auburn’s Jabari Smith are considered the top players in the draft.

Hammond reiterated that Orlando will choose the player the Magic believe will be the best in the long run, not just who fits next year’s team better.

“You hate to be too cliché and say, ‘We’re going to go with the best player on the board,’ but I really believe that when you get to this level of the draft, you live by that,” Hammond said. “We can’t sacrifice a lesser player just because we have this need. I don’t think any need can be that great.”

But would the Magic lean on the guys on their roster for those evaluations?

Wendell Carter Jr. (Duke), Chuma Okeke (Auburn) and Jalen Suggs (Gonzaga) all went to college where one of the top prospects did, although none of them did at the same time as the players the Magic are considering.

“[Wendell] probably knows Paolo, somewhat, maybe from the Duke connection,” Hammond said. “I don’t know if Chuma has a real strong relationship with Jabari. The interesting one is Jalen Suggs and Chet are close. If we’re going to consult with one on one situation, that’d be it.”

The Magic also have the Nos. 32 and 35 picks in the second round.

They spoke with multiple players during last week’s combine who could be available when they’re on the board with one of those second-round picks.

Orlando will bring in prospects it believes could be available in the range of those second-round selections for workouts.

“This is kind of like the dating process — you don’t know who that person is until you actually live with them,” Hammond said. “That’s when you make the full commitment. We’re going to have to get to know them the best we can.”

This article first appeared on OrlandoSentinel.com. Email Khobi Price at [email protected] or follow him on Twitter at @khobi_price.

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Southern Minnesotans to vote in special primary Tuesday for Jim Hagedorn’s seat in Congress

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Southern Minnesotans to vote in special primary Tuesday for Jim Hagedorn’s seat in Congress

Voters in southern Minnesota will choose candidates in a special primary this week in the first step in a complicated process for filling the seat of Republican U.S. Rep. Jim Hagedorn, who died of cancer in February.

REPUBLICAN CANDIDATES

The GOP candidates Tuesday for the 1st District seat include Hagedorn’s widow, Jennifer Carnahan, who has leveled a series of bitter attacks in the final days of the campaign against two of her main rivals in the primary, state Rep. Jeremy Munson and former state Rep. Brad Finstad. She has labeled both of them as captives of “Establishment Republicans and the Washington Swamp.” And she has claimed that her husband made it clear before he died that he did not want Munson to replace him.

EARLIER: Jeremy Munson, with help of own money, leads fundraising for Jim Hagedorn congressional seat

Former President Donald Trump hasn’t endorsed a candidate to replace the staunchly pro-Trump Hagedorn, but Carnahan, of Blue Earth, has been making the most overt appeals to Trump supporters. Her website is loaded with photos and videos of her and Hagedorn with Trump, and of her appearances at Trump campaign events in 2020.

Carnahan was forced out as chair of the Republican Party of Minnesota last August after a prominent donor was indicted on child sex trafficking charges and former staffers complained of a toxic work environment. And she was sued by Hagedorn’s mother, stepfather and sister this month in a dispute over money they loaned to help cover his medical bills. But she’s painting herself as the best candidate to carry on her husband’s legacy — and Trump’s.

Munson, of Lake Crystal, is a founder of a hard-right faction that broke from the main Minnesota House GOP Caucus. He’s painting himself as the truest conservative in the race. He has been touting his string of endorsements from nationally prominent congressional hard-liners, including Sens. Ted Cruz, of Texas, and Rand Paul, of Kentucky; Reps. Jim Jordan, of Ohio, Scott Perry, of Pennsylvania, and Thomas Massie, of Kentucky; and former U.S. Rep. Michele Bachmann, of Minnesota. His website includes a photo of him at a Trump rally with Trump in the background.

Munson won 55% of the vote when 1st District Republicans met last month to try to endorse a candidate for the general election in November, but he fell short of the required 60%. Due to the accelerated calendar, the party hasn’t endorsed a candidate for the special primary nor the special general election Aug. 9 that will decide who gets to fill out the rest of Hagedorn’s term.

Finstad, of New Ulm, has the backing of several Minnesota GOP officeholders, including U.S. Reps. Michelle Fischbach and Pete Stauber of Minnesota, as well as the Minnesota Police and Peace Officers Association. And he’s been quick to remind voters that he was Trump’s state director for USDA Rural Development in Minnesota.

But Carnahan has attacked Finstad for clicking “like” on tweets perceived as anti-Trump and claims he’s a “squishy” Republican establishment figure who never truly supported Trump.

Other Republicans on the ballot include agricultural attorney Matt Benda, of Albert Lea, and state Rep. Nels Pierson, of Rochester.

DEMOCRATIC CANDIDATES

On the Democratic side, the endorsed candidate is former Hormel Foods CEO Jeffrey Ettinger, of Austin, who now chairs the Hormel Foundation.

His opponents include University of Minnesota law professor Richard Painter, of Mendota Heights, a former White House ethics lawyer in President George W. Bush’s administration.

Turnout for Tuesday’s special primary is expected to be low, and the process for what will follow is complicated.

The special primary and the Aug. 9 special general election are being held within the district’s existing borders. But Aug. 9 is also when Minnesota will hold regular primaries statewide.

The winner of the special general election, who will fill out the rest of Hagedorn’s term into January, presumably will also win the district’s regular primary that same day. That should give him or her an advantage heading into the November general election, which will determine who holds the seat in the next Congress.

Both the regular primary and the general election will be held within the district’s new court-adjusted borders. Redistricting this year didn’t change the political balance of the district much, so it still leans Republican.

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