HARDWICK — Biology class may never be the same.
Students at Hazen Union High School in Hardwick will be saving the lives of a few amphibians this semester as they learn about anatomy with a dissection simulator.
The software, Digital Frog 2.5, was the prize awarded to Hazen Union by the education arm of People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals (PETA) after science teacher Teal Church submitted the winning essay in a contest explaining why the school deserved the new tool. The students started using it this month.
According to PETA, the tool allows students to “cut” tissue by using a digital scalpel to explore the animal’s anatomy. And unlike dead frogs that have been dissected, and killed, the old fashioned way — with knives — PETA says the new software teaches students about how frogs’ living bodies work and about their natural habitats.
“We’re delighted to help Ms. Church and Hazen Union take the lead in teaching biology with humane, modern methods,” said PETA’s Senior Vice President of Laboratory Investigations, Kathy Guillermo.
ST. JOHNSBURY — A Vermont company is finishing work on a $40 million expansion to its manufacturing plant in St. Johnsbury.
Weidmann Electrical Technology makes insulation for electrical transformers.
More than 260 people work at the plant, with an average annual salary of $52,000.
Vice President John Goodrich tells Vermont Public Radio (http://bit.ly/RE5Vap) the future of the plant was in question a number of years ago. He said a high U.S. corporate tax rate was one reason Weidmann considered going to another country. Its parent company is a family-owned Swiss firm.
Goodrich credits former Gov. Jim Douglas, legislators and local economic development officials for extending tax breaks to the company.
Weidmann’s federal tax liability was reduced through a program called the New Markets Tax Credit, administered by Housing Vermont.
NORTH TROY — An elderly Jay couple was killed Sunday morning when their car was hit head-on by another driver.
Edmund Moran, 82, and his wife Margaret Moran 76, of Jay, both died from their injuries, according to Vermont State Police.
Police said Edmund Moran was pronounced dead at the scene while Margaret Moran died at North Country Hospital in Newport.
Police said Alexis Gabree, 26, of St. Albans crossed into the Morans’ lane of travel shortly before the 9 a.m. accident on Vermont Route 105.
Gabree was transported to North Country Hospital for non-life threatening injuries, police said.
Police said that Edmund Moran was wearing a seat belt, and that Gabree was not. Both vehicles were destroyed in the accident.
State Police asked that if anyone witnessed the crash, they call the Derby barracks at 334-8881.
Jenna Pizzi Photo
Classes have been canceled at St. Johnsbury Academy today, out of respect for Melissa Jenkins, a science teacher at the school who was reported missing late Sunday night.
Headmaster Tom Lovett, speaking at a full school assembly this morning, told the school that it’s okay to experience whatever emotion they are feeling right now - he’s been through them all himself. But in the end, he said, “Love always wins.”
Students and faculty at the school are planning a fundraiser Friday where people will wear pink - Jenkins’ favorite color - in her honor. The school is starting an education fund for Jenkins’ 2-year-old son, who was found alone in her car, parked by the side of Goss Hollow Road in St. Johnsbury and still running, on Sunday night. Proceeds from the fundraiser will go to the education fund. Some local businesses have also expressed interest in donations. Check the St. Johnsbury Academy web site for details.
Police have said a body found in Barnet yesterday - about 12 miles from Jenkins’ car - is likely the missing teacher, although they have not made a final identification pending today’s autopsy on the body. The criminal investigation into her disappearance continues today, with “several leads” in the case, but police are not releasing much information in order to protect the integrity of the investigation. The Federal Bureau of Investigation is assisting State Police in the matter.
Outside Fuller Hall today, a hand-written sign read “We love you Miss Jenkins.” Paper bags — for holding candles — decorated with messages for Jenkins are lined up on either side of the side walk leading to Fuller Hall, a remnant of Monday night’s vigil for the missing teacher.
-Jenna Pizzi | Staff Writer
Stefan Hard / Staff Photo
ST JOHNSBURY — State Police found a body on Monday afternoon that is believed to be that of Melissa Jenkins, a 33-year-old St. Johnsbury woman who disappeared suspiciously Sunday night.
The body was found at approximately 1:30 p.m. near a remote pull off of Comerford Dam Road in Barnet, where State Police detectives said there appears to have been recent activity. Major Ed Ledo, criminal division commander, would not say that the body was a positive match for Jenkins. Continue reading
A St. Johnsbury man is dead after crashing into a tree off Route 2 in Marshfield on Sunday at 12:45 a.m.
Garth Drew, 43, was not wearing his seatbelt when he his 1999 Subaru Legacy crashed into the tree on the south side of the road. Drew was trapped inside the car and when emergency personnel arrived on scene, they determined Drew was deceased inside.
Preliminary investigation revealed that Drew was traveling west on Route 2 and for an unknown reason, his car started traveling in a southwesterly direction and went off the south side of the road and hit the tree.
The force of the impact crushed the front end, trapping Drew in the driver’s seat, according to police.
Members of the Marshfield and Plainfield fire departments used the “Jaws of Life” to extricate Drew who had been pronounced dead at the scene.
His body was transported to the medical examiner’s office in Burlington where an autopsy will be conducted.
The crash is still under investigation.