Didier Drogba Leads Chelsea to First Ever Title

Didier Drogba added to his growing legend by scoring a dramatic header in the 88th minute to bring his club Chelsea to a tie with favored Bayern Munich at their home stadium, then he heroically won the match with a penalty kick to give Chelsea a 4-3 advantage and its first-ever European Champions League title.Drogba’s contract with Chelsea expires next month, so it could have been the theatrical 34-year-old’s last match with the British club. He couldn’t have gone off in a more dramatic fashion, lifting his club onto his shoulders after team captain John Terry was suspended for the final match. Drogba, who is from the Ivory Coast, later called his winning penalty kick his “best ever goal.”Bayern Munich scored first and held the league for much of the tense match until Drogba’s header with just minutes left pulled desperate Chelsea into a tie.“He’s a hero. Without him we’re not here,” said Lampard, who scored with Chelsea’s third penalty. “I’d love him to stay. What he did tonight he’s been doing all his career.”A total of seven starters from the two teams were suspended for the game, giving it an unsettled feel that home team Bayern was quick to take advantage of. The win guarantee Chelsea a spot in next year’s Champions League tournament, which is crucial to the team’s finances and elite status. read more

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Blake Griffin Gets 95 Million Extension From Clippers

Blake Griffin said he did not want to leave the Los Angeles Clippers and it looks like he will be the centerpiece of the franchise —  and wrecking rims in L.A —  for years to come.The powerful and explosive power forward agreed to a five-year extension with the Clippers worth as much as $95 million if he is voted an All-Star starter again or named to a second All-NBA team next season under the so-called “Derrick Rose Rule” in the new collective bargaining agreement.“I feel good about them (the Clippers),” Griffin told ESPNLosAngeles last weekend at Team USA’s training camp in Las Vegas. “Like I’ve said, everything’s been positive. Everything’s been moving forward. It’s been a good experience. I’m not a believer in breaking up something that’s working.”The Rose rule allows a player finishing his rookie contract to make 30 percent of a team’s salary cap — up from 25 percent — if he’s twice been voted an All-Star starter, twice been voted All-NBA or won an MVP award.Under another clause in the new CBA, rookies may extend their contracts by four years. However, a team may designate one player to sign a five-year extension.Griffin was always going to be the Clippers’ designated player, according to sources within the organization. However, had Eric Gordon not been traded to the New Orleans Hornets last December as part of the Chris Paul trade, it might have created a problem.With Griffin the only player on the Clippers’ roster in line for such an extension and his place in the league firmly established — he was the rookie of the year in 2011, as well as a two-time All-Star — he will receive the designation.Griffin’s extension would begin with the 2013-14 season. He would be able to opt out of the final season of the contract but is otherwise committed to the franchise through 2018.Since drafting Griffin No. 1 overall in 2009, the Clippers have tried to surround him with a mix of talented young players and veterans that could help him succeed and the franchise to win. read more

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Cougar DJ Hayden Nearly Dies From Injury In Practice

Houston Cougar cornerback D.J. Hayden was close to death when he suffered massive internal bleeding after a routine collision with a teammate in practice.The Houston team doctor said 95 percent of those who suffered the kind of injury Hayden did dies. He tore the inferior vena cava, the large vein that carries blood from the lower half of the body back to the heart. That injury is unprecedented on a football field.“This injury has never been seen or reported in association with a football injury and is more associated with high-speed motor vehicle injuries,” head team physician Dr. Walter Lowe said in a release. “The type of injury D.J. had is 95 percent fatal in the field and we are all very thankful for the coordinate response from the University of Houston trainers, EMS paramedics, the trauma team at Memorial Hermann and operating surgeon Dr. John Holcomb.”Given his low odds of survival at the time of the injury, and that it happened on a football field during practice, the efforts to save Hayden’s life had to be incredible. The school said Hayden is in stable yet critical condition, according to CougarsDen.com.Hayden, a senior, was Conference USA’s Newcomer of the Year last season and was earned second team All Conference.“D.J. is a tremendous young man and has been a great asset to our program, both on and off the field,” coach Tony Levine said. “I ask that everyone continue to keep D.J. and his family in their thoughts and prayers. We are very fortunate to have some of the nation’s top physicians and medical facilities just minutes away from our campus and I would like to extend our appreciation for their efforts on Tuesday evening. We thank you for respecting the privacy of D.J. and his family at this time. We look forward to supporting D.J. on his road to recovery.” read more

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Javon Belcher Is Not The Victim Hes A Murderer

The views and opinions expressed in this article are those of the authors and do not necessarily reflect the views, policies or position of Atlanta Black Star or its employees Is anyone on the Kansas City Chiefs mad at Jovan Belcher, murderer? He killed a 22-year-old woman, leaving a three-month old motherless. He did this in a house with his mother in a nearby room. And yet his jersey still hangs in the team’s locker room as some sort of twisted memorial.Not cool.If he died as former Chief running back Joe Delaney did in 1983, drowning while trying to rescue three children in a lake, or as former K.C. linebacker Derrick Thomas did tragically from a massive blood clot resulting from a car accident in 2000 . . . then such a display would be appropriate.Delaney’s and Thomas’ names and numbers reside on the Arrowhead Stadium Ring of Honor – an appropriate place for fallen players who did not die from their own hand.Belcher killed himself – after killing his girlfriend. And for that, he should be shunned like poison ivy.It is a tragedy that Belcher, 25, took his own life after gunning down his girlfriend, but with the murder should come disassociation and anger, not sympathy.This is not a cold-hearted approach, but one born of empathy for Kasandra Perkins and her parent-less child; for her family that grieves the unnecessary death a loved one, including her cousin – the wife of Belcher teammate Jamaal Charles – who introduced her to the athlete that would take her life.And then there is his mother, Cheryl Shepherd, who was left to seek help for her dying “daughter-in-law.” You could hear her pain and fear in the 911 call recording. She’s making his funeral plans and left to raise his child, who will be a constant memory of the tragedy that will tug at her heart the rest of her life.After shooting his girlfriend, Belcher headed to the team’s practice facility to shoot himself in front of the general manager, head coach and his position coach. They are undergoing mandatory counseling for witnessing someone put a bullet through his own head. Think they will forget that moment anytime soon?More significantly, little Zoey will grow up and one day will be old enough to ask about her parents. How do you craft an answer that does not scar her for life?This is the carnage Belcher left behind. For that, he hardly should earn anyone’s sympathy – or a place in the Chiefs’ locker room.“I don’t know if it’s a shrine, or whatever you want to put it. It’s a tribute,” offensive tackle Eric Winston said. “He was a player on this team. We’re all struggling to reconcile the conflicting emotions we have.”No doubt, for the players, it is a difficult balance, but how did he earn a tribute? He killed a young woman.His teammates got dressed in suits and attended a memorial service for Belcher on Wednesday. They are hurt and confused, shocked. How could someone they thought they knew flip as he apparently did. Maybe it was brain injury that turned him, although any other known case of NFL players with such malfunctions have only hurt themselves. Maybe it was one false moment that he wished he had back the instant it occurred, although the multiple gun shots could suggest something different.Lots of maybes. . .Whatever the case, Belcher’s locker should be cleaned out and discarded like so much trash. He does not deserve the attention it brings or the sympathy it elicits.No one will know what drove a seemingly fine young man to such an awful tailspin. But he is not the victim here; he created the victims, and there are many.And for that, Belcher should be cast aside, at least figuratively. His mother has already said she will always love her son; that’s a mom for you. His friends certainly will have similar feelings.To onlookers, it is a bit frustrating and disheartening to see so much attention paid to a murderer. The attention and focus should go to the real victims in this horrible case – and to someone worthy, someone who can use the prayers and use the support.His daughter. read more

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Michael Sams Father Not Happy With Sons Gay Revelation

Michael Sam Sr., the father of Missouri football star Michael Sam who revealed this week that he is gay, was so upset when his son told him of his sexuality that he said he could not finish his meal.“I couldn’t eat no more, so I went to Applebee’s to have drinks,” Sam Sr. told The New York Times. “I don’t want my grandkids raised in that kind of environment.”He said he received a text message from his son that read, “Dad, I’m gay” last Tuesday. And while many have publicly applauded Sam’s son for his courage, the player’s father was less than thrilled. He told the Times that he’s “old school” and that the idea of a homosexual player in the NFL bothers him, even when that person is his own son.“As a Black man, we have so many hurdles to cross. This is just one he has to cross,” Sam Sr. told The Times.He told the newspaper that late Hall of Famer Deacon Jones, the leader of the Rams’ Fearsome Foursome who is credited with terming the word “sack,” is “turning over in his grave.”He told the newspaper, however, that he loves his son and hopes he makes it into the NFL.Sam led the SEC with 11.5 sacks, and 19 tackles for a loss. Many NFL draft projections see him as a likely mid-round pick, with some saying Sam could go as high as the third round, with a possible position switch to outside linebacker. He is rated as the 12th-best outside pass-rusher in the draft by ESPN Scouts Inc.His upbringing in Hitchcock, Texas, was filled with adversity. As such, he told ESPN that his decision to come out seemed easy compared to the tragedies he has had to endure.“I endured so much in my past: seeing my older brother killed from a gunshot wound, not knowing that my oldest sister died when she was a baby and I never got the chance to meet her,” he said. “My second-oldest brother went missing in 1998, and me and my little sister were the last ones to see him … my other two brothers have been in and out of jail since eighth grade, currently both in jail.“Telling the world I’m gay is nothing compared to that.”On Sunday, the defensive end told ESPN that his parents, who are no longer together, took the news well, which contradicts the comments from his father to The Times.“I told my mom and dad last week, and they just pretty much said, ‘We knew and we love you and support you,’” he said. “I’m their baby boy. I’m the first to go to college. I’m the first to graduate college. Something like this is just another milestone.”The Times reported that when Sam returns to his hometown he usually stays with friends instead of his family.“I’m closer to my friends than I am to my family,” Sam told the newspaper. read more

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WBNS stops student radio

The estimated 200 listeners of The Underground’s webcast of Ohio State football games might have to turn to other means of media to cheer on the Buckeyes this season.Steve Snapp, the OSU sports information director, told Aaron Stollar, director of the sports department at the Underground, to cease broadcasts of the games immediately. Stollar was told that WBNS – The Fan 1460 AM and 97.1 FM – has an exclusive $1.5 million deal for the rights to broadcast football games.The Underground had been offering a completely free webcast of the games, while WBNS’s service charges a monthly fee through the athletic department’s Web site. Both Snapp and Director of Athletics Andy Geiger denied that there is a charge for the service, Stollar said.Stollar admitted The Underground is technically in violation of the contract signed by WBNS, but that everyone at its station thought the games could still be broadcasted without a problem.“I guess The Fan sees our 150-200 viewers a week as a threat,” Stollar said.Scott Barthelmas, who announces OSU games along with Stollar every Saturday, calls the ordeal an “odd situation.”“We’ve been doing this a long time, and the communication from the athletic department has not been clear,” he said.Ruth Gerstner from Student Affairs said she was surprised the Underground had been allowed to broadcast games. She said anything other than the WBNS broadcast would be violating the contract made by the athletic department and WBNS, which holds exclusive rights to the games.The athletic department gave The Underground $3,000 in August in order to ensure the broadcast capabilities of the station. The Underground broadcasts many Ohio State sports, including football.In an article which appeared in the Oct. 3 issue of The Lantern, Snapp said it was important for students to hear a wide variety of games from the perspective of other OSU students. He also said Geiger wanted to assist the troubled organization so it could continue broadcasting games.“Student affairs tells us to be more visible, and get our name out there and advertise, and then we get shut down,” Stollar said.Barthelmas and Stollar both said they might be able to solve the issue and keep broadcasting the games on Saturdays, but they might need some help from Geiger, whom Stollar said is on their side.Numerous phone calls to Snapp and Geiger were not returned.“Nothing is final as of yet,” Stollar said. “This could still be worked out.” read more

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Opinion March Madness doesnt always represent college basketballs best

Connecticut junior guard Ryan Boatright (11) points to the sky in celebration after the 2014 National Championship April 7 at AT&T Stadium. Connecticut won, 60-54.Courtesy of MCTI absolutely love the NCAA Tournament. Nothing comes close to beating it, in my eyes. The hustle, the close games, the heartbreak and jubilation — it is the ultimate sporting event.But it’s certainly not without its flaws.The Connecticut Huskies defeated the Kentucky Wildcats 60-54 to be crowned National Champions Monday night. But does this really make them top in the country?Obviously this is a massive accomplishment. UConn’s second national title in four years is something most fans can only dream about. But is it fair that surviving the tournament is the sole mark of the nation’s best team?The problem I often have with the tournament is that it is a simple reflection of which teams got hot at the right time. It’s not like that’s not a problem in other sports (look at the New York Giants’ two most recent Super Bowl wins, both of which saw the Giants playing on Wild Card weekend), but the tournament is so much easier to get into than the playoffs in other sports.Look at Ohio State basketball this year. It was a mediocre team, plain and simple. It had no semblance of an offense, no go-to scorer, no interior presence, and seemed to only excel at defending inbound passes.But the Buckeyes easily made the tournament. Dominating their exceptionally weak non-conference schedule and squeezing out a few big conference wins was enough for 25 victories, a lock to get in, despite a 10-8 record in Big Ten play.The Buckeyes didn’t find the magic that UConn did, though, as their season came to a close in their first tournament game against the No. 11-seed Dayton. But what if OSU had figured out how to score late in the season?If the Buckeyes had managed to get hot and make a tournament run, could you really say that a team that lost twice to Penn State was one of the nation’s elite teams? I don’t think anyone could watch its offensive strategy of passing the ball around the perimeter for 30 seconds and argue that.UConn finished the regular season ranked No. 18 in the AP Poll, just four spots better than the Buckeyes. Its season featured some good wins over Florida, Memphis, and Cincinnati, but despite 32 wins, it was still only good enough to earn a No. 7 seed.Kentucky didn’t even finish the season ranked in the AP Poll, although its name can be seen in the “others receiving votes” column.Are these the teams that can be narrowed down as the two best in the country? I realize basketball is more than just stats and polls, and the postseason is what it’s all about, but is it possible that winning the tournament creates an overrated legacy just a little?I’m not saying there’s a better way to determine the season’s champion. But when you look back on this season 10 years from now, will it be easily recognizable that Wichita State didn’t lose a regular season game or Arizona, Florida, and Syracuse spent a combined 15 weeks at No. 1? No, the only thing you will see will be UConn claiming the national title.I am not trying to take away this tremendous accomplishment by the Huskies, but is it right that a few weeks in March and April completely wash out an OK regular season? read more

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Football Ohio State coaches mostly rated meets expectation in 2016 performance reviews

Ohio State coach Urban Meyer observes the field at Memorial Stadium prior to the Buckeyes’ season-opening 49-21 win over Indiana on Aug. 31 in Bloomington, Indiana. Credit: Colin Hass-Hill | Sports EditorOhio State football coaches, including coach Urban Meyer and each assistant coach who remains on the staff from the 2016 season, either exceeded or met expectations in their overall ratings, according to performance evaluations obtained by The Lantern through a public-records request.Meyer was reviewed by Athletics Director Gene Smith while Meyer evaluated every assistant coach. The reviews were conducted in June. Each assistant coach rated himself in a variety of categories and added comments and goals with input from Meyer. The head coach added overall comments at the bottom of the documents.Reviews of former co-defensive coordinator and linebackers coach Luke Fickell, former co-offensive coordinator and quarterbacks coach Tim Beck and former co-offensive coordinator and tight ends coach Ed Warinner were not completed because they departed before reviews took place. Urban MeyerDespite reaching the College Football Playoff, Meyer received a “performance meets expectations” when determining the competitive success of the program. “Reaching the CFP represents another milestone!” Smith wrote in Meyer’s review.Meyer earned an overall rating of “exceeds expectations.” He was given exceptionally high reviews for Ohio State’s off-field performance. “The academic performance of all students represented the best in many years,” Smith wrote. “Embedded with that is the ever growing positive culture. The young men represent the highest character almost across the board. Urban’s continued approach as an excellent community engager (all communities) is significant for the entire university.”According Smith’s review, Meyer’s performance exceeded expectations in the academic success of the program, commitment to compliance, “student-athlete welfare,” leadership and “public relations/donor relations.”  The head coach met, but did not exceed, expectations with his communication and budget management.Smith noted that Meyer should continue to strive for a team GPA of above 3.0, which, according to Meyer’s contract, would result in the coach receiving a $50,000 bonus. Meyer was told to continue to focus on “cultural and behavioral issues all students face,” to “think outside of the box on education about these issues” and to recruit “the most talented and gifted players and put them in position to win championships.” Greg SchianoDespite having only worked with the former Tampa Bay Buccaneers head coach for one season, Meyer called defensive coordinator and safeties coach Greg Schiano the “best coach I’ve worked with.”Ohio State defensive coordinator Greg Schiano shakes hands with players prior to fall camp on Aug. 5. Credit: Colin Hass-Hill | Sports Editor.In his first year with Ohio State last season, Schiano worked with Fickell as co-defensive coordinator and safeties coach. He is one of two coaches to give himself a five out of five — which means he exceeded expectations — in his overall rating as a coach.Unsurprisingly, given first-round draft pick Malik Hooker’s ascendance last season, Schiano earned positive comments from Meyer based on his unit’s strength and performance, development of his unit, and recruiting. The head coach also gave Schiano positive reviews for his leadership of the defensive staff, creativity in the system, loyalty and his demand of accountability.Schiano positively evaluated his unit’s productivity, position productivity, player development, teaching methods, “thirst for knowledge” and “selfless recruiting.” The defensive coordinator noted he should work on patience, enlisting Meyer’s support earlier in the recruiting cycle and turning administrative paperwork in on time.Larry JohnsonOhio State defensive line coach Larry Johnson walks to the practice field at fall camp on Aug. 5. Credit: Colin Hass-Hill | Sports Editor.Having developed and recruited one of the more dominant units in college football, it comes as no surprise that defensive line coach Larry Johnson was the second of the two assistant coaches who gave himself a five out of five overall rating, which means the coach exceeded expectations.Johnson earned positive comments from Meyer for his recruiting, player development, unit performance, loyalty, ability to get players to the NFL, “expertise at his trade” and his motivation of the team. Meyer wrote that Johnson should use his motivational skills more often.In the review, Meyer noted Johnson needed to work on continuing to develop young players and enhance defensive game planning.Kerry CoombsCornerbacks coach and special teams coordinator Kerry Coombs, whom Meyer calls an “elite coach,” earned high marks for his productivity and development of his players on the field. Coombs determined the cornerback play was “very effective” and highlighted the development of first-round picks Marshon Lattimore and Gareon Conley.Ohio State cornerbacks coach Kerry Coombs fires up the team prior to fall camp on Aug. 5. Credit: Colin Hass-Hill | Sports Editor.Coombs rated his recruiting as exceeding expectations and Meyer listed it as a positive. The cornerback coach noted the Buckeyes had a “very good [2017] class both in area recruiting and position recruiting.” But Meyer also noted Coombs had “too many misses in recruiting.”Given the loss of Lattimore and Conley, Meyer noted Coombs needed to work on development of young players and said it would be key for the 2017 season. He mentioned Coombs needed to continue enhancing special teams and work on game planning due to his additional responsibilities as assistant coordinator, defense.The head coach listed Coombs’ loyalty, special teams enhancement and motivation, enthusiasm and energy in all aspects of the program, staff chemistry, leadership of the freshman class and unit performance as positives.Coombs wrote that even though punt, kick return and kickoff units reached “Ohio State Standards” last season, the Buckeyes’ punt return must improve this year. The special teams coordinator also noted that Tyler Durbin, a walk-on kicker, exceeded expectations and punter Cameron Johnston was honored as first-team All-Big Ten. Zach SmithThough wide receivers coach and recruiting coordinator Zach Smith wrote his goals were to be the “Best in America” as a recruiter, wide receiver coach, unit leader and staff member, he was the only two coaches to give himself a three out of five — meaning he marginally met expectations — on his productivity and development of his players on the field.Ohio State wide receivers coach Zach Smith talks to junior wide receiver Eric Glover-Williams prior to fall camp on Aug. 5. Credit: Colin Hass-Hill | Sports Editor.Meyer wrote that Smith needed to work on the unit behavior, referring to “last year failures.” He also mentioned Smith needed to work on his unit strength, “equating the meeting room,” “personal matters,” “focusing on the task” and special teams.Smith earned positive comments for his creativity in recruiting, with his unit and the offense as a whole. Meyer noted Smith’s knowledge of the offense as a positive, but said he needed to use it. The receiver coach’s recruiting, adaptivity to new coordinators and enhancement of his unit’s offseason schedules, were positively evaluated by Meyer.The wideout coach wrote that he should enhance his productivity in recruiting, with the goal to “be the best.”Tony AlfordRunning backs coach and assistant head coach for offense Tony Alford gave himself a four out of five, meeting expectations for the productivity and development of his players on the field. Running back Mike Weber was named Big Ten Freshman of the Year in 2016 when he rushed for 1,096 yards. But Alford noted he needs to get more production from the backup running backs.Ohio State running backs coach Tony Alford prepares for practice at fall camp on Aug. 5. Credit: Colin Hass-Hill | Sports Editor.Alford earned positive reviews for his recruiting, “development of his unit,” loyalty, staff chemistry and “preaching of Ohio State culture.” Meyer noted that he has had “zero issues” with the running backs off the field and mentioned the unit had a strong cohesion.According to Meyer’s review, the third-year Ohio State assistant coach must work on “equating the meeting room,” game-planning, speaking in front of the team and becoming the best in the country.Alford wrote that one of his goals is to continue on the path of professional growth in order to obtain a head coaching job. He also listed having his unit held in high regard by the team and coaching staff as a goal.Greg StudrawaThough two players — right guard Billy Price and center Pat Elflein — earned first-team All-American honors last season, offensive line coach Greg Studrawa gave himself either a three or four out of five (both were circled on the evaluation) in terms of his overall rating as a coach.Ohio State offensive line coach Greg Studrawa coaches his unit at a fall practice on Aug. 5. Credit: Colin Hass-Hill | Sports Editor.He evaluated himself as a three out of five — marginally meeting expectations — for the productivity and development of his players on the field. Studrawa wrote he needs the unit to improve pass protection and finish blocks more consistently. The need for improvement extended off the field as the offensive line coach evaluated himself as marginally meeting expectations for his off-field social productivity and development, writing he needs to “continue to stress social behavior.”Studrawa wrote that his goals are to have the best offensive line in the country, improve at staying involved in players’ lives outside of football and a continuation of leadership development.Studrawa earned high marks from Meyer for his passion, creativity and productivity in recruiting, as well as his caring for players and family involvement.According Meyer’s review, the offensive line coach must work on improving his unit’s culture, specifically its toughness and fundamentals. Meyer also noted Studrawa needs to work on improving “unit pride,” his value in the offensive staff room, “ownership and understanding of the offense,” and his relationships with the staff, including strength and conditioning coach Mickey Marotti. Meyer also mentioned Studrawa need to work on his use of sarcasm. There is “no place for it,” Meyer wrote.View the full performance evaluations here: Urban Meyer, Greg Schiano, Larry Johnson, Kerry Coombs, Zach Smith, Tony Alford, Greg Studrawa read more

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Stowaway mouse causes British Airways flight to be delayed for hours

first_imgA British Airways flight was delayed for hours because a mouse was spotted on the plane.Passengers had already boarded the 10.40am flight from Heathrow to San Francisco when it was announced there was going to be a delay.They were told they had to change planes, but were informed that it would be several hours before a gate would be available for the new plane. Now we are of course discussing the mouse’s potential travel looks. pic.twitter.com/3KlKe6OrdT— Midland (@midlandsound) March 1, 2017 Want the best of The Telegraph direct to your email and WhatsApp? Sign up to our free twice-daily  Front Page newsletter and new  audio briefings. A passenger told the BBC that it was announced that “a rather unusual occurrence has occurred”.They then said rules stipulate that planes cannot take off if a mouse is found on board.The passenger, called Carly, said: “I’m not sure people knew how to react. There was general disbelief.”center_img Just had my flight to SFO cancelled because of a mouse on board the plane. Could it not get a visa?? #britishairways— Mark Watt (@markwatt) March 1, 2017 Some passengers tweeted about the flight, with one writing a Haiku about the mouse.Another flight was provided for the passengers four hours later.British Airways said: “We know almost everyone wants to fly with us to San Francisco, but on this occasion there was one very small customer who we had to send back to the gate.”Everyone with two legs is now on their way to California, and we are sorry for the delay.”last_img read more

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Manchester attack hero stole purse from teenage victims grandmother while she lay

first_imgChris Parker A man hailed as a “homeless hero” after the Manchester Arena bombing stole the purse of a teenage victim’s grandmother while she lay stricken, a court has heard.Chris Parker, 33, is alleged to have taken Pauline Healey’s purse and its contents from her handbag while she was on the ground of the foyer.Mrs Healey’s granddaughter – 14-year-old Sorrell Leczkowski, from Leeds – was among the 22 people killed by Salman Abedi after an Ariana Grande concert in May.Parker is also accused of taking the mobile phone of another teenage girl, who cannot be named for legal reasons.He entered formal not guilty pleas to the two charges when he appeared at Manchester and Salford Magistrates’ Court on Wednesday.Prosecutors allege that Parker took a purse, containing bank cards, from Mrs Healey’s handbag as she lay on the ground.Ben Southam, prosecuting, said it was clear that the defendant provided “some limited assistance” to people injured at the entrance to the venue’s foyer, but it was the Crown’s case that he “equally” took the opportunity to commit the thefts. He told how he had wrapped an injured girl in a T-shirt and tending to a woman who passed away in his arms.More than £50,000 was raised for him on the GoFundMe website following reports of the help he had given.Minute by minute, how the attack unfolded Mrs Healey had attended the concert with Sorrell and Sorrell’s mother, Samantha.The grandmother later underwent 15 hours of surgery to remove shrapnel from her body and suffered multiple compound fractures to her arms and legs, while Sorrell’s mother was also seriously injured. Parker, who gave his address as Crumpsall, Manchester, was remanded in custody ahead of a hearing at Manchester Crown Court on September 13.District Judge John Temperley said the case was too serious to be dealt with within his jurisdiction and must be heard in a crown court.As Parker was led from the dock after the short hearing, he said: “I have done nothing. Absolutely nothing.” Following the attack, Parker had described witnessing the blast and tending to the injured.Speaking at the time, he said: “It knocked me to the floor and then I got up and instead of running away, my gut instinct was to run back and try and help. There was people lying on the floor everywhere.” Sorrell, who was a pupil at Allerton High School in Leeds, was hoping to be an architect and wanted to study at Columbia University in New York.On the day of her funeral, her family said: “Sorrell was only 14, but she was our rock, she kept us all grounded. She was such a clever, talented, creative girl, there was nothing she couldn’t do.”Abedi killed 22 people when he detonated a home-made bomb packed with metal nuts as shrapnel moments after the concert ended on May 22. Police have said they do not believe he was part of a larger terror network. Chris Parker, who was dubbed a ‘homeless hero’ after the Manchester attackCredit:MEN MEDIA Salman Abedi Salman Abedi detonated a home-made bomb packed with metal nuts after the Ariana Grande concertCredit:Facebook Want the best of The Telegraph direct to your email and WhatsApp? Sign up to our free twice-daily  Front Page newsletter and new  audio briefings.last_img read more

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