Anniversary for air base

The Leader's special section in today's newspaper commemorating the 60th anniversary of Little Rock Air Force Base tells the history, mostly in photos, of one of the premier military installations in the country.

Our man in Havana

It does not match President Nixon's opening to communist China in 1972 for boldness and certainly not for historical significance, but Governor Asa Hutchinson's visit to the little neighboring communist state of Cuba is noteworthy because, well, because he didn't need to do it but he did it anyway.

Foster care
needs you!

Arkansas' foster-care system needs our help, and that has never been more painfully obvious as when Michelle Hood spoke to the Jacksonville and North Little Rock Sertoma Clubs during a combined meeting last week at Southern Oaks Country Club.

Lonoke County Fair
takes GOP straw poll

One of the more interesting sideshows at the Lonoke County Fair last week was a straw poll by the local Republican Party committee asking fairgoers about their preferred presidential candidates.


The future of Asacare

Confusion and indecision rarely serve the public interest, but they can be useful for a government official in the throes of a terrible political dilemma. So it is for Gov. Hutchinson, who must somehow persuade quarrelsome members of his own party to accept a program they viscerally hate. You know what that is---Obamacare and particularly the giant part of it that has insured medical care for 250,000 Arkansans for much of the past two years.

Planting of tree
is symbol of hope

President Clinton on Friday helped dedicate a small sapling taken from the chestnut tree outside Anne Frank's window in Amsterdam and now planted in 11 cities in the U.S.

Base always on missions, target same

Commander says LRAFB a role model for others to emulate.

Next 60 years at LRAFB

Investment in runway proves base national asset, Brown says.

Colonel: Guards will get medals

Ceremony next week for airmen whose quick action prevented a potential massacre.

Deja vu: Refugees
from '50s to today

The scenes of Syrian refugees stranded last week at the two main train stations in Budapest brought back memories of the Hungarian revolution in 1956, when my family took a train from Budapest to the Austrian border in December ahead of the Soviet army that had crushed the uprising.

Lucille: mystery woman

A marker at the Twist Plantation in Cross County commemorates a fire that broke out during a fight at a dance hall where B.B. King was playing with his band.

Musicians who made
stars shine

Legacy/Sony Entertain-ment has issued "Dylan, Cash and the Nashville Cats: A New Music City," a two-CD compilation to coincide with the Country Music Hall of Fame and Museum's exhibition celebrating the music of several gifted studio musicians who backed not only Bob Dylan and Johnny Cash but many other stars who helped create the Nashville sound in the 1960s and beyond.

Lehoczky: A class act and witness to history

Istvan (Steve) Bela Lehoczky, the patriarch of the Hungarian-American community in Little Rock, passed away July 10 at the age of 82.


Pardons by Beebe
not as bad as Huck's

(This Nov. 15, 2014, political column won first place in the Arkansas Press Association's Better Newspaper contest for large weeklies.)
Gov. Mike Beebe has had a good record on pardons until this week, much better than Gov. Mike Huckabee, his predecessor.


The last time
King of Blues
sang at home

B.B. King, who passed away in his sleep in his Las Vegas home Thursday night at the age of 89, had been frail for years. Yet he kept performing until last fall, always willing to meet his fans and pose for pictures and sign autographs.

Mother recalls
end of horror

My 89-year-old mother spoke on Holocaust Remembrance Day on Thursday at the assisted-living facility in Florida where she lives. She spoke for 10 minutes about the horrors of the concentration camps, as did another survivor, a man who is a couple of years older than my mother.


Son of Delta:
Be a winner

Lloyd E. Shefsky is a retired international lawyer and entrepreneur who was born in Arkansas, raised in Chicago and is now semi-retired in Florida. He's still lecturing, consulting and writing books about living the American Dream through hard work, personal vision and playing by the rules.

Arkansas ain't ready
for reform

Paddy Bauler, who represented Chicago's 43rd Ward for 35 years, must be the patron saint of Arkansas legislators. [FULL TEXT]

Little girl tells Santa a wish for Christmas

When my friend Jack Sallee was with the Jaycees in Fayetteville, they'd put an ad in the paper at Christmastime saying that for $2 you could have Santa come to your place. [FULL TEXT]

Prison reform pushed

The Department of Correction wants $100 million for a new prison, but Sen. Eddie Joe Williams (R-Cabot) thinks that's a waste of money.

Pardons by Beebe
not as bad as Huck's

Gov. Mike Beebe has had a good record on pardons until this week, much better than Gov. Mike Huckabee, his predecessor.

Lennox, Hutcherson on Blue Note; Impulse back

Annie Lennox's new CD, "Nostalgia," from Blue Note includes a stunning version of "Strange Fruit," an anti-lynching song usually associated with Billie Holiday, who recorded it in 1937.

Is a life worth

a million dollars?

Almost half the parolees in Arkansas who serve a fraction of their sentences commit more crimes soon after they're freed.

Killer at our front door

Arron Lewis stood near the front door at The Leader one evening last month, and he knocked on the big glass window when he realized the door was locked.

Killer in Cabot's schools
3 times

Glen Martin Green, the killer serving a life sentence without parole, worked in Cabot schools three different times this year.

Cabot ends prison labor in schools

After a report here Saturday that a convicted murderer worked at Cabot Junior High North last week as a prison trustee, school officials decided Monday to ban prison labor in the district. [FULL TEXT]

Killer worked at Cabot school gym

A murderer who is serving a life sentence without parole was installing a wall mat this week at the Cabot Junior High North gym as part of a prison work-release program. [FULL TEXT]


When firm's comptroller
steals $1.1M

AGL Corp., the small Jacksonville manufacturer of laser equipment used for construction around the world, had been struggling for years. The company had trouble making a profit. There were layoffs and rumors about the plant shutting down. [FULL TEXT]

Genocide threatens minorities

A huge humanitarian disaster was unfolding last month while the western world and much of the media looked away. They focused on a tiny area on the Mediterranean controlled by a group of Moslem fanatics, who have held their own people hostage while provoking another senseless war with Israel. [FULL TEXT]

Strategy put own people in line of fire

A ceasefire seems to be holding in Gaza after a month of hostilities that killed and wounded 10,000 Palestinians – while fewer than 100 Israelis were killed and injured – in the wake of another monumental Arab military failure. [FULL TEXT]

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October 7, 2015

Justice of the Peace Aaron Robinson (right) on Monday swears in newly elected members of the Jacksonville-North Pulaski School District. From left, Jim Moore, Dena Toney, LaConda Watson, board president Daniel Gray, Marcia Dornblaser, Carol Miles and Ronald McDaniel. Superintendent Tony Wood wants the board to approve of asking voters for a 7.6-millage increase.

District wants millage hike

IN SHORT: Election and long-range plans need board's approval at Nov. 2 meeting. [FULL TEXT]

Planting of tree is symbol of hope

IN SHORT: President Clinton on Friday helped dedicate a small sapling taken from the chestnut tree outside Anne Frank's window in Amsterdam and now planted in 11 cities in the U.S. [FULL TEXT]

Hospital overdue on taxes

IN SHORT: Allegiance owes more than $2.1 million in unpaid federal and state withholding taxes, faces other problems. [FULL TEXT]

CabotFest this weekend

IN SHORT: Plenty of fun on Saturday with food, rides, music and much more. [FULL TEXT]

Sylvan Hills running back Ty Compton, 44, follows lead blocker Jonathan Hicks through a huge hole in a recent game. The Bears host Jacksonville on Friday at Blackwood Field.


Sylvan Hills wary of 1-4 Red Devils

IN SHORT: Bears not expecting easy game despite better record. [FULL TEXT]

AHSAA decides JNPSD to be 6A

IN SHORT: Director says association must follow the guidelines in its handbook. [FULL TEXT]

Cabot XC runners set several PRs

IN SHORT: Four girls and three boys run best cross country times in Chili Pepper. [FULL TEXT]

Razorbacks achieve a lot of firsts

IN SHORT: Saturday night, Arkansas finished. The Razorbacks overcame struggles on special teams and the defense held Tennessee to just three points in the second half en route to a 24-20 win over the SEC-East Volunteers in front of a crowd of 101,265 at Neyland Stadium. [FULL TEXT]

Tech. Sgt. Eric Sims, a 314th Aircraft Maintenance Squadron hydraulic systems craftsman, stands in the back of a C-130H at Little Rock Air Force Base. Sims received the 2014 Air Force Lt. Gen. Leo Marquez Maintenance Award.

Exceptional airman wins AF honor

IN SHORT: Tech. Sgt. Eric Sims recognized for outstanding maintenance. [FULL TEXT]


Letter from the front

IN SHORT: A young soldier from Lonoke County, who became a judge and prosecutor, fought in World War. [FULL TEXT]

Rebirth of Jacksonville's heart

IN SHORT: An effort is underway to return the city's original train station. [FULL TEXT]