Friday, March 15, 2024

The Roundup

Article Icon 1 SpaceX Nearly Completes Third Launch

SpaceX successfully launched its huge Starship rocket Thursday morning from Boca Chica. It was the spacecraft’s longest test flight yet, although the craft broke up during re-entry from orbit and splashed into the Indian Ocean.

Despite the re-entry failure, the mission was seen as a giant leap forward in spacecraft development. The Starship is the largest rocket ever built—bigger than the Saturn V used to send astronauts to the moon.

Thursday’s launch was the rocket’s third test flight. You can see a video of the Starship launching into orbit here.

Article Icon 1 Feds Sell Loot of Convicted Army Fraudster

Federal officials are moving to sell off 78 classic cars and 31 luxury homes belonging to Janet Mello, a former Army finance civilian who pleaded guilty to defrauding the military branch of $108 million.

Her accumulated stash is being brought to a federal storage facility in Gonzales County and awaits sale to prospective buyers. The seized properties across multiple states will soon be auctioned.

Mello, 57, pleaded guilty on March 7 to ten counts of fraud for diverting over $100M in federal funds to a fake company over eight years. Although she’ll face sentencing on May 29, the Army confirmed that she wouldn’t lose her retirement benefits. (Editor’s note: Yes, you read that correctly. She still gets her retirement benefits!)

Article Icon 1 Top Ten St. Patty’s Day Destinations

Looking for a place to celebrate St. Patrick’s Day? Texas towns offer a variety of options for thirsty celebrants.

For a weekend trip, head over to the town of Shamrock, where the town holds an annual Saint Patrick’s Day Festival with a wide choice of music, food, and parade.

In Austin, you’ll find the famed Jack and Ginger’s pub. Embrace your inner Irish and sample their selection of 82-plus beers on tap and Irish fare.

For even more Irish celebrations, check out this list of the ten best St. Patrick’s Day destinations.

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Around Texas

➤ Harlingen: The sole survivor of last week’s border helicopter crash is still in critical condition, with surgery expected soon. New York National Guardsman Jacob Pratt received multiple fractures and broken bones from the incident and remains on a ventilator. (More)

➤ Fort Worth: The Molson-Coors brewery strike is now in its fourth week and is causing traffic delays near I-35W and Alta Mesa Blvd. Over 400 union workers are slowing cars entering the facility as part of their labor protest. (See Video)

 Houston: Mayor John Whitmire has formed a five-member committee to review over 260,000 cases that were dropped without investigation by the city’s police department. The committee’s first meeting is set for March 20. (See the Details)

 Uvalde: The father of Robb Elementary shooting victim Uziyah Garcia has set up camp outside the police department, demanding the immediate firing of three officers involved in the school shooting incident. (Watch his Video)

➤ Amarillo: Firefighters have made considerable progress in containing the Panhandle wildfires. Windy Deuce is 94% contained, Smokehouse Creek is at 89%, and the Wellhouse Fire is at 100% containment. (Track the Updates)

Tyler native Kim Hill won over $17,000 and a paid vacation on Wednesday night’s Wheel of Fortune. She says the money will be put into self-publishing two books, the first being a devotional and the second on the value of being single. (See the Video)

Texas Sports

➤ Texas A&M has hired Nebraska Athletic Director Trev Alberts to take over as athletic director for the Aggies. Alberts resigned from Nebraska on Wednesday and will now oversee 650 athletes in 20 varsity sports at A&M. (Get the Scoop)

➤ The multi-million dollar defamation lawsuit against Cowboys owner Jerry Jones has been dismissed. A woman claiming to be his daughter could not prove Jones acted with malice when he refused to pay her any money. (More)

➤ Texas Tech beat No. 20 BYU 81-67 in the Big 12 basketball tournament quarterfinals. The Red Raiders led throughout the game. (Watch the Highlights)

The Business Of Texas

➤ Austin: Texas-based ICON, the company that once 3D-printed a house, unveiled new products at the SXSW festival, including low-carbon concrete, a robotic construction system, and a new AI platform. (See their Work)

H-E-B-owned Favor Delivery announced a new partnership with point-of-sale platform Toast. The partnership is meant to allow customers to order and pay for food delivery seamlessly. (Get the Details)

➤ Rockwall: Ballard Power Systems won $40 million in federal grants for the construction of a new fuel cell production Gigafactory. (More)

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Et Cetera

 Two brothers landed the two largest White and Black Crappies ever caught in the Concho River, each catching one on separate outings. Officials measured the fish at 1.4 lb., 12.5 inches, and 1.25 lb.,13 inches. (See the Photo)

 Seven K9 dogs received new bullet-and-stab-proof body armor from the Williamson County Sheriff’s Office. The vests were donated by Vested Interest K9s and valued at $1,800 apiece. (See Photos)

➤ Houston: Local water park Typhoon Texas is hiring over 1,000 positions for their upcoming season. Jobs range from lifeguard to operations manager. The park opens for weekends starting April 13 and full-time after May 27. (See Openings)

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The Polling Station

 Do you celebrate St. Patrick’s Day?

  1. Yes
  2. No

Thursday’s Results:

What eggs make up the perfect Texas breakfast?

  1. Fried: 39.4%
  2. Scrambled: 29.5%
  3. Poached: 9.4%
  4. Other: 8.2%
  5. None: 6.9%
  6. Boiled: 6.6%
Texas Trivia

Which Irishman that served as Spanish governor of Texas from 1767 to 1770?

Show me the answer

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