News

Providence – After 11 years at the helm, Colonel Edmund Culhane is retiring as Superintendent of the Rhode Island State Police. Governor Lincoln Almond announced today that the retirement would take effect on October 21. The governor also announced the promotion of Major Steven Pare to Colonel and Superintendent.

The Rhode Island National Guard is mobilizing its first troops to assist with the battle against terrorism. Forty-four members of the Rhode Island Air National Guard will be shipping out this week for active duty as part of a nationwide call-up of reservists. The guardsmen are members of the 143rd Rhode Island Air Wing.

The number of children in Rhode Island without health insurance has dropped to a record low. New statistics from the U.S. Census Bureau for the year 2000 show the number of children in the state without coverage has fallen to 2.4%. That is a decrease from 5.5% in 1999 and the lowest rate among any state in the country. The figures are based on the Census Bureau?s Curent Population Survey conducted in March.

Governor Lincoln Almond is backign President Bush's plan to federalize security at airports. For now, he is not taking up the president's suggestion to call up National Guard troops to provide extra security at T.F. Green Airport. The governor said in a statement he would consider using the National Guard, if there is any need later.

The Executive Director of the Rhode Island Airport Corporation says air travel in this country will never be the same. Michael Cheston welcomes calls for handing security duties at airports over the federal government. In the meantime,he says it's premature to conclude hijackers responsible for last week's terrorist attacks had assitance from workers at any airport. Hear Deborah Becker's conversation with Michael Cheston from WRNI's Morning Edition.

    While so many people were trying to get out of New York last week,WRNI producer Nate was trying to get in. He came away with these thoughts.

      People in Rhode Island and around the country have responded to last week's terrorist attacks with a spirit of giving. They're giving blood, money, goods, and time. Many donations are no longer being accepted. Experts say the magnitude of last week's events and all the media coverage has motivated people to become more charitable. Some local charities hope they don't later see decreases in donations for other causes. WRNI's Ellen Liberman prepared this report.

        Vigil

        More than 20-thousand mourners gathered at the State House last night to light candles and pray for the victims of terrorist attacks on Tuesday. Lieutenant Governor Charles Fogarty reminded the crowd that while the terrorists may have broken our hearts, they will not break our spirits. Family members of the nine Rhode Islanders killed were There, along with National Guard officer, firefighters, teachers, and parents hugging their children. More vigils are scheduled at churches and on college campuses across the state in the coming days.

        Providence – An estimated 20,000 people showed up at the Rhode Island State House last night for a candle light vigil in honor of those killed in New York and at the Pentagon this week. Many spoke of unity as they listened to messages from speakers. Including the Rev. Marlowe Washington, Governor Lincoln Almond, and Senator Jack Reed. Here are some excerpts assembled by WRNI?s Stephen Belter.

          North Smithfield – Among those most on edge in Rhode Island following the terrorist attacks this week are Muslims. With the investigation into the suicide plane crashes focusing on Muslim fundamentalists, Muslim and Arab Americans have felt under scrutiny. They are also among those who took part in Friday?s prayer services in Rhode Island. WRNI?s Av Harris prepared this report.

            Nine medical personnel from the naval station in Newport are in New York to help out following tuesday's attack.

            They join 21 doctors, nurses and red cross volunteers from the Rhode Island disaster medical assistance team who arrived in Manhattan yesterday.

            Firefighters from Warwick, Pawtucket, Bristol, Newport and other cities have been either called to New York or are waiting on standby. Yesterday 13 firemen from East Providence left for the City.

              Rhode islanders will be marking today as a national day of prayer for the victims of Tuesday?s terrorist attacks at noon. Bells will be rung statewide and Governor Almond is urging employers to allow workers to attend services.

              State leaders including the governor, Attorney General Sheldon Whitehouse and members of the state house and senate are hosting a vigil at 8 pm on the statehouse lawn.

              Rhode Islanders are marking today as a National day of prayer for the victims of Tuesday's terrorist attacks.

              Bells will be rung statewide and Governor Almond is urging employers to allow workers to attend services.

              State leaders including the Governor, Attorney General Sheldon Whitehouse and members Of the State House and Senate are hosting A vigil at 8 pm on the State House lawn.

                The Rhode Island National Guard says it is prepared to mobilize its members for recovery and security duties following the devastating terrorist attacks on Tuesday.

                President Bush has said he is considering activating reserves. Guard spokesman, Major Michael McNamara, says Rhode Island?s 3,500 Guard members were alerted on Tuesday that the magnitude of the attacks on the United States might mean that the Guard would need to respond. McNamara says members need to be ready, physically and emotionally.

                Planes are once again flying in and out of T F Green airport but with stricter security procedures in place. Officials say passengers should expect delays and arrive three hours before their scheduled flight times. They also advise passengers tocheck with their airlines to determine which flightswill actually take off or arrive.

                Logan airport in Boston is scheduled to open Saturdaymorning.

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