October 23, 2003
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Living the American Dream in a House From Sears

By Mitch Traphagen

PICNIC, FL - The cities were becoming crowded and polluted and crime was on the rise. An economic boom was on the horizon and advances in public urban transportation were making a commute to work a possibility.

At the very same time, in the offices of the world’s largest retailer, a group of executives decided to shape a failing mail order business in home building materials into a new force in American housing. More

Mitch Traphagen Photo

Car, School Bus Collide in Ruskin

By Mitch Traphagen

RUSKIN - Four people were airlifted to Tampa General Hospital with injuries stemming from a collision between a car and school bus on the corner of 7th Street SW and 21st Avenue SW in Ruskin. The accident occurred Monday afternoon.  More

Mitch Traphagen Photo

Court Battle Ends, the Fight Goes On

By Mitch Traphagen

The eyes of the world are on the Tampa Bay area as supporters for the parents of Terri Shiavo maintained an around the clock vigil at the Woodside Hospice in Pinellas Park. On Oct. 15, Pinellas County Judge George Greer ordered Shiavo’s feeding tube removed. Doctors have said she could survive for up to 15 days past that point. Her parents, Bob and Mary Schindler, and their supporters hoped that Governor Jeb Bush would step in to halt the court’s decision. On Monday, the Florida House passed a narrowly defined resolution allowing the Governor to issue a stay in cases involving withholding nutrition and hydration in patients. On Tuesday, the Senate approved the Bill and Gov. Bush signed it within an hour. Shiavo is currently at Morton Plant Hospital in Clearwater receiving fluids before the feeding tube will be re-inserted.  The action has been met with harsh criticism by Shiavo's husband, Michael, and his attorney, George Felos.

Pictured above, supporters outside of the Woodside Hospice in Pinellas Park pray and urge Gov. Bush to take action on Oct. 19.

Mitch Traphagen Photo

Prep Football Wrap Up

Area Prep Football Results

Area High School Football Schedules

Mitch Traphagen Photo

In The Archives:

Finding Florida:  Fire up the motorcycle and join the Observer News for a different type of travel story.  Tourist motels, road kill and a whole lot of heaven awaits.

Part One:  Searching From the Beginning
Part Two:  Heading Home
Part Three:  Back to the Islands

The Changing Face of South Hillsborough:  The rumors are flying about several big box retailers moving into south county. The facts, however, are few. Yet one in every ten new jobs created in the entire nation came from the Tampa-St. Petersburg-Clearwater Metropolitan area. South county communities are joining forces to become a strong player in that prospering market. How will all of the changes effect our communities and area businesses and what can south county shoppers expect from the future?

The three-part series is available on the web:

Part One - Welcome to SouthShore
Part Two - Meet the Neighbors
Part Three - It's a Bird!  It's a Plane!  It's a Home Depot!




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