National News

Pandemic-delayed World Games open in Birmingham a year late

A global athletic competition is starting in Birmingham, Alabama, after a yearlong delay caused by the COVID-19 pandemic. The opening ceremony for the World Games 2022 is set for Thursday night at Protective Stadium. It will kick off 10 days of competition in nearly 40 sports around the metro area with more than 3,600 participants from about 100 nations. Events include non-Olympic sports including sumo wrestling, gymnastics, pickleball, martial arts and tug of war. Some competitions already have been held. Hundreds of people turned out in Oxford east of Birmingham for exhibition games featuring the USA Softball Women’s National Team.

Oldest Magellanic penguin at San Francisco Zoo dies at 40

The oldest Magellanic penguin at the San Francisco Zoo & Gardens has died at the age of 40. The zoo said the male, called Captain Eo, died Wednesday. He was one of the oldest penguins living under human care. Captain Eo arrived at the zoo in 1984 when 52 wild Magellanic penguins were brought in to found a colony on Penguin Island. Captain Eo had 26 children, 31 grandchildren and eight great-grandchildren. The zoo's assistant curator for birds, Quinn Brown, says Captain Eo “represented a part of San Francisco Zoo history and the penguin world that cannot ever be forgotten.”

Yellowstone flooding reveals forecast flaws as climate warms

Some weather experts say the recent flooding that devastated Yellowstone National Park underscores an urgent need to update how the government issues forecasts as extreme weather becomes more frequent. The National Weather Service had warned of rising rivers but failed to predict the calamitous June flooding that occurred in the park and neighboring areas of Montana. Weather experts say forecasting models based on historical records have become inadequate as climate change bakes the planet and massive rain events and heat waves become more common. No lives were lost in the Yellowstone floods but hundreds of homes were damaged and more than 10,000 people had to be evacuated.

Asian stocks higher after Fed says rate hikes may be needed

Asian stock markets are higher after the Federal Reserve said more U.S. interest rate hikes might be needed to cool inflation. Shanghai, Tokyo and Sydney advanced. Hong Kong declined. Oil prices fell more than $1 per barrel to stay below $100. Wall Street’s benchmark S&P 500 index gained 0.4% after notes from the latest Fed meeting said “an even more restrictive stance could be appropriate” to get inflation back to its 2% target. Fed officials acknowledged that could weaken the U.S. economy. Investors worry aggressive U.S. and European rate hikes to contain prices rises that are running at a four-decade high might depress global economic activity.

Mercury hold public rally in support of Brittney Griner

They shared laughs, smiles, memories. There also were tears, fears, unease. Through the range of emotions, one common thread bonded them together: Brittney Griner. Wearing “BG” shirts and holding signs, several hundred fans gathered for a public rally in support of Griner on Wednesday, hoping their sentiments would reach the WNBA player 6,000 miles away in a Russian jail cell. Griner has spent the past four months in a Russian prison and is currently on trial, accused of possessing vape cartridges containing cannabis oil when she arrived at the Moscow airport while returning to play for her Russian team. She faces up to 10 years in prison if convicted.

Ex-cop Chauvin to get federal sentence for Floyd's killing

Former Minneapolis police officer Derek Chauvin is about to learn his sentence for federal civil rights violations in the killing of George Floyd. A plea deal is in place that will likely extend his time behind bars while shifting him to possibly more favorable conditions in a federal prison. It calls for 20 to 25 years in prison. But the final decision is up to U.S. District Judge Paul Magnuson on Thursday. Prosecutors last month asked for the full 25 on the grounds that Chauvin’s actions were cold-blooded and needless. The defense has asked for 20 years, saying Chauvin accepts responsibility for what he did.

Stars we've lost so far in 2022 - June edition

We’ve had to say goodbye to some beloved musicians, athletes, actors and more. Here's a look at the stars we've lost so far in 2022, through June.