September 9th, 2008
Don Haskins was 78
The real-life coach who was portrayed in the 2006 film Glory Road, starring Derek Luke, has died. Portrayed in the film by Josh Lucas, Donald Lee Haskins coached the first basketball team ever to start five Black players. The 1966 Texas Western College squad went on to win the national championship against the University of Kentucky . Haskins later was assistant coach of the 1972 Olympic team. He died this week at age 78.
August 26th, 2008
Plane crash in Guatemala kills 10. A Guatemalan plane carrying 14 people crashed Sunday, killing 10 people, reports CNN. Eight Americans are among the dead. About 45 minutes after the Cessna Caravan 208 took off, the pilot started making calls about engine failure, according to the country’s director of civil aeronautics. But the air-traffic tower lost contact with the plane at 9:45 a.m. and it crashed in Zacapa, killing the pilot, co-pilot and the Americans on board. The other four passengers were taken to a hospital after the crash. “It seems like the pilot tried her best to make a safe landing in an open field but was not successful. On impact, the aircraft was split into pieces,” a Zacapa firefighter told reporters at the scene.
Civilians killed by Sudan’s government forces, witnesses say. Sudanese forces attacked a refugee camp in Darfur, killing at least 32 civilians early Monday, witnesses say. The witness accounts of the attack are chilling. More than 50 vehicles “packed with armed men wearing police and security forces’ uniforms … hit us with rocket-propelled grenades and machine guns,” resident of the refugee camp, Mandela Abdullah Mohammed, told The Associated Press. He also said the victims included many women and children. One rebel group spokesman from the Sudan Liberation Army claimed an even higher death toll – 45 people dead and 135 people wounded – due to the Sudanese soldiers “storming” the camp and attacking. “The government sent a strong military force and attacked the camp with the intentions of killing civilians,” another spokesman for the group told AP. A Sudanese military spokesman, though, insists they had good reason to fire on the camp. “They were surprised by heavy gunfire from within the camp. There was an exchange of fire and a number of victims,” the spokesman, Sawarmy Khaled, said. But the United Nations say they received reports about Sudanese police surrounding and attacking the camp in southern Darfur, which resulted in “injuries and deaths of civilians.” The United Nations would not give an estimate on the death toll, but a coordinator for nearby clinic run by Doctors Without Borders says that at least 65 people were admitted for treatment for gunshot wounds. Sudanese President Omar al-Bashir is facing genocide charges brought on by the International Criminal Court for allegedly supporting attacks against the nation’s ethnic Africans. Since fighting started in Darfur in 2003, about 300,000 people have died and more than 2.5 million have been made homeless.