Canal to get good paddling

Ramblin' Rhodes: Country singer finding stardom elusive
Gary Allan made his recording debut in 1996, but he remains mostly unknown to country music fans.

Freedom of French music appeals to Russian pianist

Local artist displays fascination with light
A gable window, basking in the illumination of an eternal late afternoon. A lone figure at the beach, bisected by a shadow that draws attention away from the person and toward the luminescent pink bathing suit she wears.

Ramblin' Rhodes: Country singer finding stardom elusive

Schemers fill gothic opera
Somewhere between the grandeur of Tosca and the Americana of Oklahoma, the opera Regina occupies a unique position in the opera world.

Schemers fill gothic opera

Freedom of French music appeals to Russian pianist
Following a musical path that has led from her native Russia to Tel Aviv to Germany to the concert stages of the United States, pianist Eva Ostrovsky recently triumphed in Aiken at the Sixth Annual Josef Hofmann Piano Competition.

Canal to get good paddling
Originally built in 1845 to accommodate Augusta's transportation, hydropower and water needs, the Augusta Canal now serves another purpose.

Comedy uncommon for Neil Simon
The death of a spouse, the process of grieving and a realistic portrait of marital pitfalls are not the subject matter theater-goers traditionally expect from playwright Neil Simon -- subjects that form the core of his autobiographical play Chapter Two.

Local artist displays fascination with light

Marlins manager expects more from team

Braves bask in new streak

Ex-Braves prospect swinging game's hottest bat

Braves notes: Furcal at ease as lefty

Bullpen stellar for Jackets

Cardinals set HR mark with 50th of April

Luck fails to change for Henry County

Dye blasts two more homers

Braves notes: Reliever Rivera sent to Richmond

A perfect 10: Braves' streak lives

Giants top Marlins in 12

Reds topple Mets; Cubs rout Astros

Braves win 9th straight vs. Dodgers

Braves top Dodgers; win 10th straight

Church bloopers insightful

Powertel Inc. sales soar in first quarter
Powertel Inc., a West Point, Ga.-based wireless company that analysts say may be ripe for a merger with VoiceStream Wireless Corp., reported ``exceptional'' first-quarter results, company president and chief executive officer Allen E. Smith said on a conference call Thursday.

Georgia Tech seminar will focus on importance of e-business

Military may bolster economy

Military may bolster economy
ATLANTA - The state is preparing an initiative to tap the resources of its military installations in hopes of accelerating Georgia's high-tech economy.

Business briefs: Tech stocks deflect interest increases
NEW YORK -- Technology stocks regained leadership of the stock market Thursday, rising sharply and helping blue-chip names shake off economic reports that suggested more interest-rate increases.

Business briefs: Interest-rate jitters slam stock prices
NEW YORK -- Stocks tumbled Wednesday after the latest sign of economic growth brought interest-rate worries to the foreground for the first time this week.

Powertel Inc. sales soar in first quarter

Winn-Dixie will close store
Winn-Dixie is closing its newest grocery store in Augusta, the company confirmed Wednesday. The move is part of a major initiative to restructure and improve efficiency.

Winn-Dixie will close store

Area plant goes up for sale
BP Amoco's Augusta plant is on the market.

Business briefs: Interest-rate jitters slam stock prices

Area plant goes up for sale

Georgia Tech seminar will focus on importance of e-business
Companies, both large and small, need to recognize the advantages of e-business, according to Mike Parks, the manager of the Center for Manufacturing Information Technology at the Georgia Institute of Technology.

Business briefs: Tech stocks deflect interest increases

Supports government action in Miami

Dinosaurs had heart

Praises Reno `putting Elian first'

Is reminded of Hitler's raid tactics

Urges better bus service for Augusta
Since moving to Augusta 15 years ago, I've been a constant user of the city's transit system. It leaves much to be desired.John H. Roberts, Augusta

Calls for lawmakers to take stand

Blasts Columbia Co. GOP chief

Hastert not 'caretaker' House speaker

Resents cartoon attack on school

Blasts Clinton's militia tactics

Bashes Clinton over Elian's siezure

Notes tragedies of Gonzalez case

Applauds government's action

Protests arrogant display of power

Gonzalez case brings back memories of Nazi thugs

Points out how precious freedom is

Assails students' rude behavior

Paybacks, at a price

Voices support for Janet Reno

Puzzles over defense of ex-manager
I have been following the on-going saga of the Bush Field Airport commission and former manager Al McDill. It has become very apparent the most vocal proponents of Mr. McDill has been The Chronicle General Manager Julian Miller, who serves on the airport advisory task force and former Chronicle General Manager EdwardSkinner, who is the chairman of the Augusta Aviation Commission. L.D. Smith, Augusta

Backs asylum for Elian Gonzalez

Wonders what favors lawmakers got

On school bus reforms

Sludge: how perilous?

Supports use of force

Urges office complex on Belair Road

Sees Midland Valley cartoon as garbage

Raps cartoon as `trash'

Attacks cartoon about Midland Valley

Capsules
Indigent people living in Georgia who have undergone a solid-organ transplant can get help obtaining prescription medications at little or no cost through a new service offered by the University of Georgia College of Pharmacy.

Candy can be a work relief
One cold day, in an office not unlike your own, we found that our snowperson-shaped candy jar was empty. So was its top half. So was its neighbor, the bevel-cut candy dish.

Ground covers work well in those odd-shaped spaces
Probably the most underrated plants in the landscape, ground covers can be used to accent, blend and unify the other elements of the home garden.

A lawn of a different stripe
You've seen the orderly, alternating lines of dark and light grass at the ballpark and want to make your lawn look like the Lake Olmstead Stadium outfield.

Cold front puts brakes on Thurmond Lake angling

First Tee golf course takes shape

LPGA braces for return of Karrie Webb

Soling's heroics save Lynx

Grrrowl present Lynx's biggest challenge

Lynx pave way for other sports

Lynx earn league's praises

Wings and Avs resume fierce rivalry

Stars expect fiesty series with Sharks

Islanders bought by computer execs

Lynx stay alive

Russians leave nothing to chance at worlds

Church bloopers insightful
The weekend is drawing nigh, and I imagine we'll see a big drop-off in church attendance after Easter.

Capsules

Candy can be a work relief

Ground covers work well in those odd-shaped spaces

A lawn of a different stripe

River Watch plan angers residents

Jury finds defendant guilty of murder

Group seeks way to inspire voting
ATLANTA -- Competitions between rival colleges. Putting ``get out to vote'' ads on Coca-Cola cans. Even tying eligibility for HOPE scholarships to registering to vote.

Incumbents to face opposition this fall
ATLANTA -- Two high ranking Democrats from Augusta, Senate Majority Leader Charles Walker and House Speaker Pro Tempore Jack Connell, will face Republican challengers this fall.

Group wants to rebuild depot
AIKEN -- Using a tiny paint brush and a keen eye, artist Gail Dedmon replicated the old Aiken Passenger Depot on canvas to help a local group bring it back to life.

Training sharpens skills of law officers
It was billed by the instructor as a simple traffic stop simulation -- a video of a woman reaching into her car for her driver's license.

Lawsuit position argued

Teacher faces charges of child molestation
An Augusta woman authorities say accepted money from three boys in exchange for sex was arrested Thursday and charged with three counts of child molestation.

Jury finds defendant guilty of murder
The prosecution and defense already had agreed that Michael S. Sapp shot to death a complete stranger May 21. On Wednesday, a jury decided that Mr. Sapp's actions amounted to murder.

Straight talk
Marty N. Martenson, managing partner of the Martenson Law Firm in Atlanta, speaks at a seminar on avoiding employee lawsuits at the Georgia Department of Labor's downtown Augusta field office. The Thursday event was sponsored by the CSRA Employer Committee.

Murder trial begins for youth

Corps stops canal dredging
Dredging of silt from the Augusta Canal was halted Thursday over claims by the Army Corps of Engineers that the Augusta Canal Authority failed to secure necessary federal permits.

Across the area: Utility work to cut subdivision's water
The Augusta-Richmond County Utilities Department has announced that water will be shut off from 8:30 a.m. to 4 p.m. today in the entire Sandridge subdivision. The work being performed is in connection with the installation of the new 20-inch water line. For more information, call Brian Richards at 796-5010.

Programs aid urban districts
One of the keys to rebuilding urban neighborhoods has always been the ability to create jobs in areas with high unemployment rates.

Murder trial begins for youth
James and Lisa Stone were so desperate for crack cocaine that they haunted the public housing streets in the predawn hours of June 11, a prosecutor told a jury Wednesday.

Administrative hearing set for Augusta educator
The Georgia Professional Standards Commission, a group that oversees licensing procedures for teachers, has asked to revoke the teaching license of a Hephzibah High School teacher.

Candidate to focus on safety questions

Site would unite pets, owners
The woman who helped get Beaufort's YMCA program off the ground almost a decade ago has a new mission.

Lawsuit position argued
COLUMBIA -- A federal judge will rule within a month on whether to grant class-action status to a racial discrimination lawsuit against four Savannah River Site contractors.

Camp helps volunteers identify birds
By the third day of birding boot camp, Krista Weatherford was beginning to get it.

River Watch plan angers residents
A few years ago, Robert Williams was hoping to save his Jamaica Court neighborhood from destruction in the path of a River Watch Parkway extension.

Jackpot generates revenues
What would you do if you won a million dollars? How about $100 million?

Event inspires senior competitors in Augusta

Physical training required

Son awaits identification
Chris Rich's only memory of his father is a picture in his mind of a brief moment before the U.S. Navy commander left for Vietnam.

Youths' release denied

Relationship prompts firing of deputy
HILTON HEAD ISLAND, S.C. -- A Beaufort County sheriff's deputy accused of having a sexual relationship with a 16-year-old girl was fired Monday after investigations by two police agencies.

Gunman not to be released

Across the area: Charge upgraded in battery incident

Camp helps volunteers identify birds

Across the area: Utility work to cut subdivision's water

Lynx pave way for other sports

Summary judgment sought in admission case

Teacher faces charges of child molestation

Across the area: Charge upgraded in battery incident
One of the two charges against the man authorities say attacked two women in two Augusta business' restrooms was upgraded Thursday to aggravated sexual battery.

Site would unite pets, owners

Engineer challenges incumbent
ATLANTA -- Georgia Rep. Ben Harbin's decision to side with Gov. Roy Barnes on education reform has helped spur a Republican primary challenge to the Columbia County lawmaker's re-election bid.

Sheriff's hopeful qualifies

Summary judgment sought in admission case
ATHENS -- Both sides in a lawsuit challenging the use of race and gender in admissions decisions at the University of Georgia have asked a federal judge to rule in their favor without further court proceedings.

Democrat to challenge Norwood

School officers equipped with guns
It's been seven years since Buddy Hendry has worn a gun belt on a regular basis.

Democrat to challenge Norwood
ATLANTA -- A Democrat from Lincoln County filed qualifying papers at the state Capitol this week to challenge U.S. Rep. Charlie Norwood's bid for a fourth term representing Georgia's 10th Congressional District.

Repairs to canal extended
The Augusta Canal, drained in early March for cleaning and maintenance, will remain dry an additional 14 days instead of being refilled this weekend.

Aiken exhibit showcases area goods, services

School board faces pressure of NAACP
The president of Augusta's NAACP chapter wants the state flags to come down from Richmond County schools.

Incumbents to face opposition this fall

Group wants to rebuild depot

Corps stops canal dredging

Repairs to canal extended

Lawyer announces his run for judge's seat
Augusta attorney Ben Jackson announced Thursday he is challenging an incumbent judge in this fall's election.

Group seeks way to inspire voting

Jury finds area teen-ager guilty of murder, robbery
Three days after Judson Harden turned 16, a jury found him guilty Thursday of murder and robbery, crimes punished in Georgia with a lifetime behind bars.

Woman's plea cuts sentence
AIKEN -- A murder case that has collected four years of dust at the Aiken County Solicitor's Office ended Wednesday shortly after it started when a circuit judge suggested that the accused killer plead guilty to a lesser charge.

Lawyer announces his run for judge's seat

Coroner supports baby bill
Coroner Sue Townsend has bad memories of the newborn babies who were dumped in the woods, hidden under mattresses and suffocated inside trash bags.

Straight talk

Event inspires senior competitors in Augusta
It takes more than six heart by-pass surgeries and a bout of can-cer to slow Bill Johnson.

Youths' release denied
AIKEN -- Two boys who authorities say told classmates they would bomb their high school and watch it burn, appeared Thursday for a second time in Aiken County Family Court, where a judge again ruled that they were too dangerous to go home.

Gunman not to be released
Ten years of hospitalization at a mental health facility after shooting a man and then exchanging gunfire with officers had brought Oscar Moore to the brink of mental stability and release back into the community.

Aiken exhibit showcases area goods, services
Joann Hartley went to Aiken Expo 2000 in search of a job, but instead left feeling like a whole new woman.

Teacher faces charges of child molestation
An Augusta woman authorities say accepted money from three boys in exchange for sex was arrested at her home Thursday and charged with three counts of child molestation.

Sheriff's hopeful qualifies
Woodrow Fryer said he had to leave the Richmond County Sheriff's Department 14 years ago for a job at Savannah River Site because he wasn't making enough to support his pregnant wife.

Training sharpens skills of law officers

Neu: Richmond record is deceiving

Candidate to focus on safety questions
Increased crime prevention education and a larger police presence in neighborhoods are two areas Leon Garvin would focus on if elected sheriff of Richmond County, he said Wednesday.

Karl still teaching Bucks during playoffs

Ailing Sixers have backcourt pains

Pacers seek third weapon to use against Milwaukee

Knicks edge Raptors

Portland takes 2-0 series lead

Pistons plan adjustments without Hill

Carruth tries to block sale of assets

Mr. Edgar Lee
SANDERSVILLE, Ga. - Mr. Edgar Peterman ``E.P.'' Lee, 87, of Sparta Road, died Tuesday, April 25, 2000, at his residence.

Mr. Ray Johnson
WARRENTON, Ga. -- Mr. Ray Johnson, 73, of Rabun Road, died Wednesday, April 26, 2000, at Doctors Hospital, Augusta.

Mrs. Josie Frances Smith
HARLEM -- Mrs. Josie Frances Smith, 78, of Sanders Road, died Tuesday, April 25, 2000, at her residence.

Mrs. Katherine Diestelhorst
HEPHZIBAH - Mrs. Katherine Diestelhorst, 73, died Tuesday, April 25, 2000, at University Hospital, Augusta.

Mr. John Weeks
YONGES ISLAND, S.C. -- Mr. John Wingate Weeks, 85, died Sunday, April 16, 2000, at his residence.

Mr. Roy Hamilton
AIKEN - Mr. Roy Hamilton, 49, of DeSota Drive, died Wednesday, April 26, 2000, at his residence.

Mrs. Earnestine Warren
Mrs. Earnestine Warren, 80, of Emmett Street, died Monday, April 24, 2000, at University Hospital.

Mr. Oliver Hobbs
STAPLETON, Ga. - Mr. Oliver Hobbs, 90, of Kelly Road, died Tuesday, April 25, 2000, at his residence.

Mr. James Isaac
AIKEN - Mr. James Al Isaac, 68, of Lincoln Avenue, died Wednesday, April 19, 2000, at his residence.

Mr. Thomas Philbeck Sr.
AIKEN - Mr. Thomas Edward Philbeck Sr., 86, of Whitehall Place, died Wednesday, April 26, 2000, at his residence.

Jessee Hartmann
Jessee Allen Hartmann, infant son of Jacob and Dana Hartmann, died Wednesday, April 26, 2000, at Trinity Medical Center, Davenport, Iowa.

Mrs. Myrtle Ard
LEXINGTON, S.C. - Mrs. Myrtle Sanders Ard, 87, died Tuesday, April 25, 2000, at Lexington Medical Center Extended Care.

Mr. Thomas McMillan
EHRHARDT, S.C. - Mr. Thomas McMillan, 67, died Tuesday, April 25, 2000, at Providence Hospital, Columbia.

Ms. Annie Williams
Ms. Annie Ruth Williams, of Amsterdam Drive, died Friday, April 21, 2000, at University Hospital.

Ms. Wanda Elaine Milton
Ms. Wanda Elaine Milton, 45, of Davison Drive, died Thursday, April 27, 2000, at her residence.

Mr. Charles Weigle Jr.
GREENVILLE, S.C. - Mr. Charles H. ``Charlie'' Weigle Jr., 73, died Tuesday, April 25, 2000, at Greenville Memorial Medical Center.

Mrs. Gertie Walker
ATLANTA -- Mrs. Gertie Walker, 51, of Martin Luther King Drive, died Tuesday, April 25, 2000, at Grady Memorial Hospital.

Mr. Woodrow Paige
AIKEN - Mr. Woodrow H. Paige, 78, of Jehossee Drive, died Monday, April 24, 2000, at his residence.

Mrs. Edith Hearst
LINCOLNTON, Ga. -- Mrs. Edith Mae Hearst, 80, of Hearst-Cebo Road, died Tuesday, April 25, 2000, at Doctors Hospital, Augusta.

Mrs. Emma Fintch
AIKEN - Mrs. Emma Fintch, 74, of Colleton Avenue Southeast, died Monday, April 24, 2000, at Aiken Regional Medical Centers.

Mrs. Alda Hawkins
AIKEN -- Mrs. Alda Mae Large Hawkins, 78, of Powell Pond Road, died Wednesday, April 26, 2000, at Aiken Regional Medical Centers.

Mr. Wade Roberts
BARNWELL, S.C. -- Mr. Wade Hampton Roberts, 74, of Hagood Avenue, died Wednesday, April 26, 2000.

Mrs. Doris Barton
Mrs. Doris Reed Barton, 81, of Martinez, died Thursday, April 27, 2000, at Doctors Hospital.

Mr. Timothy Wiley
WADLEY, Ga. -- Mr. Timothy ``Booster'' Wiley, 90, of Battle Street, died Sunday, April 23, 2000, at Jefferson Hospital, Louisville.

Mrs. Gloria J. Henthorne
Mrs. Gloria J. Henthorne, 71, died Tuesday, April 25, 2000, at Medical College of Georgia Hospital.

Mr. Craig Grady
LITHONIA, Ga. -- Mr. Craig M. Grady, 38, of Sutcliffe Square, died Friday, April 21, 2000, at Department of Veterans Affairs Medical Centers, Atlanta.

Mrs. Joyce Forte
GREENSBORO, Ga. -- Mrs. Joyce Ann Magin Forte, 56, of Timothy Road, died Thursday, April 27, 2000, at her residence.

Mr. Richard Swift
GRANITE FALLS, N.C. -- Mr. Richard Lawrence Swift, 59, of Villa Lane, died Thursday, April 27, 2000, at Hospice of Burke County.

Mr. James Rhodes Sr.
CRAWFORDVILLE, Ga. - Mr. James Herman Rhodes Sr., 53, of Bethany Church Road, died Tuesday, April 25, 2000, at Minnie G. Boswell Hospital.

Mrs. Lillie Warthen
NEW YORK -- Mrs. Lillie Pearl Warthen, 91, died Friday, April 21, 2000.

Mrs. Mary Chalker
GRAY, Ga. - Mrs. Mary Bea Chalker, 83, died Wednesday, April 26, 2000, at Lynnhaven Nursing Home.

Mr. Jesse Bradshaw Jr.
Mr. Jesse Bradshaw Jr., 67, of Augusta Avenue, died Tuesday, April 25, 2000.

Mr. Robert Davis Jr.
SANDERSVILLE, Ga. - Mr. Robert E. Davis Jr., 65, of Warthen Street, died Wednesday, April 26, 2000, at his residence.

Mrs. Josephine Carthens
WILLISTON, S.C. -- Mrs. Josephine Rudolph Carthens, 44, of Edwards Street, died Tuesday, April 25, 2000, at Aiken Regional Medical Centers, Aiken.

Mrs. Doris Raye
WILLISTON, S.C. - Mrs. Doris Franklin Raye, 70, of Baxter Street, died Tuesday, April 25, 2000, at Palmetto Richland Memorial Hospital, Columbia.

Mrs. Elizabeth Hall
AIKEN -- Mrs. Elizabeth Burwell Hall, 86, of Augustus Road, died Wednesday, April 26, 2000, at Pepper Hill Nursing Center.

Mr. Ray Johnson

Mrs. Joyce Forte

Ms. Wanda Elaine Milton

Mr. Oliver Hobbs

Mrs. Gloria J. Henthorne

Mr. Thomas Philbeck Sr.

Mrs. Gertie Walker

Mr. Craig Grady

Mrs. Edith Hearst

Mrs. Doris Raye

Mrs. Josephine Carthens

Ms. Annie Williams

Mr. Jesse Bradshaw Jr.

Mr. Thomas McMillan

Mr. Richard Swift

Mrs. Katherine Diestelhorst

Mr. Woodrow Paige

Mrs. Mary Chalker

Mrs. Elizabeth Hall

Mrs. Myrtle Ard

Mr. Timothy Wiley

Mrs. Doris Barton

Jessee Hartmann

Mr. John Weeks

Mrs. Earnestine Warren

Mrs. Lillie Warthen

Mr. James Isaac

Sees Midland Valley cartoon as garbage
In response to the editorial cartoon in the April 20 Chronicle, I was very disappointed to see something so tasteless. Lauren Smith, North Augusta

Dinosaurs had heart
Sometimes a giant leap forward in scientific knowledge raises more questions than it answers.

Critiques Rants & Raves remarks
I read the Rants & Raves. Some of the comments are so-so, but some are not. Nellie M. Pierce, Augusta

Sludge: how perilous?
The Environmental Protection Agency makes up more rules than it can enforce, as evidenced by its inability to manage sludge disposal.

Hits cartoon critical of gun shows
A syndicated editorial cartoon appearing recently in The Chronicle perpetuates several myths and outright lies regarding gun shows and background checks for firearms sales. Mike Mitchell, Martinez

Paybacks, at a price
There's nothing illegal about it, but you wouldn't know it from the insinuations: State Sen. Charles Walker, D-Augusta, bent over backward to help the cemetery industry whittle away at a law backed by the funeral industry.

Expresses outrage over INS raid
I am outraged and sickened by the actions of the Immigration and Naturalization Service. Why couldn't they have left Elian Gonzalez where he was until the appeals were over? Beth Scott, Augusta

Hastert not 'caretaker' House speaker
IF THE QUESTION on a TV quiz show is ``Who is Dennis Hastert?'' would you know ``the final answer''?

Striking down God
The latest example of carrying the separation of church and state doctrine to illogical extremes comes from a ruling by the 6th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals. A three-judge panel voted 2-1 that Ohio's state motto -- ``With God, all things are possible'' -- unconstitutionally endorses Christianity.

Supports government action in Miami
Elian Gonzalez belongs with his father, his sole surviving parent. This is true for any child, unless the parent is clearly unfit. Politics has no place in this basic human value. William G. Collins Jr., Aiken

Praises Reno `putting Elian first'
As a retired Army officer and a person who works daily with prison inmates, I can tell you that the best way to bring a potentially violent situation to a close with the least danger to everyone concerned is with overwhelming force. Glenn Link, Evans

Praises true, timely message
I find it utterly disheartening that so many people completely miss the point of a message. Rick McKee's cartoon was a very true and timely statement: The marriage of ignorance and evil produces violence. Elizabeth Boyette, Jackson

Backs asylum for Elian Gonzalez
Since conservatives oppose illegal immigration, liberals accuse conservatives of hypocrisy because of their support for 6-year-old Elian Gonzalez in this immigration case. Ralph Buchanan Jr., North Augusta

Slams Janet Reno's rescue tactics
After watching Janet Reno's storm troopers grab Elian in Miami Saturday, it occurs to me she does not belong in this country, much less as the U.S. attorney general. She would do well in Communist Cuba. Ron Chapin, Augusta

Urges better bus service for Augusta
Since moving to Augusta 15 years ago, I've been a constant user of the city's transit system. It leaves much to be desired. John H. Roberts, Augusta

Wonders if mom chose right country
Little Elian Gonzalez' mother gave her life trying to get her young son to a country where a corrupt government's jack-booted thugs would not come in the night and take him away to serve the political needs of the state. Dale W.Hemman, Evans

Gonzalez case brings back memories of Nazi thugs
The armed and masked federal raiders who spirited Elian Gonzalez away under the cover of darkness brought to mind my childhood memories of the Nazi Gestapo thugs who kidnapped the German Jews in the late 1930s. Bill Sherrill, Augusta

Is reminded of Hitler's raid tactics
Our country has become a police state, reminiscent of the 1930s and 1940s when Germany's Adolf Hitler and Russia's Josef Stalin had their police raid homes in the dark of night to carry off people at gunpoint. Pat O'Rourk, Martinez

Supports use of force
I am not and never have been a fan or supporter of President Bill Clinton or Attorney General Janet Reno. They are consistently devious in their interpretation of the ``rule of law,'' and only follow the law when it suits their purposes. Al Kotras, Augusta

Protests arrogant display of power
I strongly protest the actions taken by the Justice Department and the Immigration and Naturalization Service in seizing Elian Gonzalez. This violent and arrogant display of government power was totally unwarranted in any legal way. Soren McMillan, Augusta

On school bus reforms
School buses are front-burner issues for both the Richmond County and Columbia County boards of education.

Blasts Clinton's militia tactics
As I watched ``Comrade'' Clinton's armed thugs break into the home of Elian Gonzalez's relatives and take the child away at machine-gun point, I wondered how many of my fellow citizens finally realize how far this government has gone. Patricia VanHooser, North Augusta

Voices support for Janet Reno
Your new editorial page chief, Suzanne Downing, has proven that she lacks even a semblance of objectivity in the Elian Gonzales matter. Her three anti-administration diatribes are knee-jerk reactions following the lead of a minority of Republican leaders who initially accused Attorney General Janet Reno of acting without a legal warrant. Gene Rickaby, Martinez

Notes tragedies of Gonzalez case
I think the Elian Gonzalez situation has had a tragic beginning and ending. I sympathize with the Miami family. However, I think it is outrageous how the Cuban-American people are dealing with the situation. Kristin Trimble, Jackson

Resents cartoon attack on school
As a 1995 graduate of Midland Valley High School, and a soldier serving my country in South Korea, I am utterly disgusted at how The Chronicle could find humor in the tragedy at Columbine High School in Colorado, or what happened at Midland Valley High School in South Carolina. Pfc. Timothy Jones, Seoul, South Korea

Calls for lawmakers to take stand
After more than 20 years of service in the Marines, today I raised the flag on my house upside down. Robert Phelps, Martinez

Attacks cartoon about Midland Valley
I am a student at Midland Valley High School and am not ashamed of that in the least bit. That you had the audacity to draw and publish in last Thursday's editorial page cartoon was a huge mistake. Candy Maxwell, Graniteville

Applauds government's action
I applaud the actions of the U.S. Justice Department in returning Elian Gonzalez to his father. The government had no choice but to take that action. John Hopkins, North Augusta

Raps cartoon as `trash'
(Re the Midland Valley High School cartoon): That was certainly in poor taste and the students certainly could not help it. You ought to apologize to the students. It was the most distasteful thing I have ever seen in your newspaper. You need to build students up.Joe Embry, Martinez

Attacks Clinton, Reno decision
I served my country for 22 years. Until now, I have always thought that we have the best system -- flawed as it may be -- in the world.t Francine Trujillo, Augusta

Assails students' rude behavior
On the April 20 front page of The Chronicle was the phrase: ``Astronaut's mission involves speaking to hungry students.'' Bill Field, Augusta

Points out how precious freedom is
Why is my stomach churning? It isn't the coffee -- I haven't had any. It is the Elian Gonzalez thing. I cannot stop thinking about it. Devon Hope, Evans

Hopes for Elian's protection from harm
Elian Gonzalez and his mother left Cuba for a life with freedom. Unfortunately his mother lost her life, but Elian was miraculously saved. Carl W. Rafoth, Augusta

Slams anti-Confederate flag groups
The completeness of history can be surprising, shocking and sometimes shattering. Even so, people must continue to eradicate the myth and expose the truth. Donald R. Sturkie, Ridge Spring

Blasts Columbia Co. GOP chief
People like Bob Beckham make me glad I'm a Democrat. He makes a mockery of the Columbia County Republican Party. L. Johnson, Martinez

Puzzles over defense of ex-manager
I have been following the on-going saga of the Bush Field Airport commission and former manager Al McDill. It has become very apparent the most vocal proponents of Mr. McDill has been The Chronicle General Manager Julian Miller, who serves on the airport advisory task force and former Chronicle General Manager EdwardSkinner, who is the chairman of the Augusta Aviation Commission. L.D. Smith, Augusta

Says hype perpetuated hysteria
Re your cartoon concerning the events that occurred last week at Midland Valley High School: Dwayne Derrick, Aiken

Bashes Clinton over Elian's siezure
In the dead of night, the Castro-Clinton Peoples Police Force invaded a private residence and seized a 6-year-old boy at gunpoint so the president could honor his pledge to his friend Fidel Castro. Richard Lathan, Augusta

Wonders what favors lawmakers got
It's my understanding that state Reps. Ben Harbin, R-Martinez, Bill Jackson, R-Appling, and Robin Williams, R-Augusta, voted for S.R. 411, a bill that would allow the governor to appoint a replacement for any sitting legislator who might be convicted of a crime. Carl Mixon, Martinez

Urges office complex on Belair Road
Columbia County, in the area along Belair and Stevens Creek roads, has been growing at a very rapid speed. A lot of residential construction is going on there. While the increase in housing is a healthy sign of growth and prosperity, it also means there will be more traffic ... Iqbal Khan, Martinez

Celebrates City Government Week
During the week of April 23-29, Harlem joins other cities across Georgia in celebrating Georgia City Government Week, set aside to recognize the services city governments provide and their contribution to a better quality of life. Our theme, ``Georgia's Cities: At Your Service,'' pays tribute to the role cities play. Shirley W. Tankersley, Harlem

Tejeda's victory sends Wolfpack to AAA quarters

Lewis-Grant is biggest title fight ever

Testimony of $100,000 payoff for Foreman-Schulz

MetroStars to host four international games

Heart, determination drive Butler boys

Other Gordon aims to get back on track

Simpkins leads S. Aiken in quest for first region title

Overtime: Lady Jaguar tennis team regional-bound

Simpkins, Merriweather split 100, 200

Acevedos are sisters in soccer too

Expanded schedule increases demands

Stewart struggles in second season

Racing facts: NAPA Auto Parts 500

Overtime: Rivers voted coach of year

Heritage eliminates Greenbrier's girls

Court is asked to deny Carruth visits with son

NASCAR still letting cheaters win

National parks buck trend of cleaner air
LOS ANGELES -- The nation's air-quality picture improved overall from 1989 to 1998, but grew hazy in many national parks, according to a report released Wednesday by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency.

Report warns of high cost of national missile defense
WASHINGTON -- A national missile shield that would offer limited protection from attack by smaller, newly armed countries would cost almost $60 billion through 2015, the nonpartisan Congressional Budget Office says.

AT&T launches record IPO
NEW YORK -- Shares of AT&T's wireless business began trading today, with bidders pricing the stock at slightly above the price set in advance in the biggest initial public offering in U.S. history.

Strong winds ground Atlantis -- again
CAPE CANAVERAL, Fla. -- For the second day in a row, stiff wind prevented space shuttle Atlantis from lifting off Tuesday on a mission to fix the international space station.

Supercomputer designed to improve weather forecasts
BOULDER, Colo. -- A new supercomputer in a federal research lab soon could let people know how much rain or snow to expect in their back yard.

New and stronger infectious diseases a growing global threat
Four reported outbreaks of unusual infections around the world have illustrated the surprising potential of new microbes to emerge and old ones to return with a vengeance.

Cyberviewing -- checking the kids from afar
NEW YORK -- Every Friday, Kimberly Sedlacek gets to watch her 4-year-old daughter's dance performance at her day care center.

Tibetan exiles complain of Chinese care of their homeland
NEW DELHI, India -- The Dalai Lama's supporters are charging that China has damaged Tibet's environment through careless exploitation of oil, water and timber resources.

Long-awaited gene therapy restores two babies to health
WASHINGTON -- In an exciting and long-awaited success, gene therapy has restored apparently normal immune systems to two French babies born with a rare, lethal immune disease sometimes called the ``bubble boy disease.''

Syria advances cautiously into online age
DAMASCUS, Syria -- In a liberalization effort that is remarkable by Syria's cautious standards, President Hafez Assad's government has begun embracing the information age, moving to modernize the economy and expand incentives for foreign investment.

Age doth not wither nor custom stale cow clone cells
Unlike Dolly the sheep, cloning of cows does not seem to speed up the aging process of cells, according to a new study.

EPA refuses to regulate coal waste
WASHINGTON -- The Environmental Protection Agency late Tuesday decided against regulating tons of ash and sludge from coal-burning power plants as toxic hazardous waste, a victory for utilities and a setback for environmental groups who have argued the waste is contaminating water supplies.

National parks buck trend of cleaner air

Strong winds ground Atlantis -- again

Cyberviewing -- checking the kids from afar

Report warns of high cost of national missile defense

New and stronger infectious diseases a growing global threat

Age doth not wither nor custom stale cow clone cells

Syria advances cautiously into online age

AT&T launches record IPO

EPA refuses to regulate coal waste

Tibetan exiles complain of Chinese care of their homeland

Supercomputer designed to improve weather forecasts

Long-awaited gene therapy restores two babies to health