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Human Race

Human Race

Issue: "Ready or not, here we go," March 28, 2009

DIED: Radio legend Paul Harvey, whose hearty "Hello, Americans" greeted an estimated 22 million listeners tuning in to his News and Comment and The Rest of the Story programs, died Feb. 28. During more than 57 years in broadcasting, Harvey, 90, delivered homespun news reports-peppered with his trademark pauses-and became known as "the voice of Middle America" for his unapologetic conservative commentaries. He and his late wife of nearly 68 years, Lynne, were long-time attenders at Chicago's Fourth Presbyterian Church.

TRANSITIONED: Focus on the Family founder Dr. James Dobson stepped down last month as board chairman of the ministry, marking the next step in a transition plan started six years ago. His wife, Shirley, also left the board, enabling them both to spend more time with family. Dobson, 72, will continue to host the ministry's radio broadcast and write its monthly newsletter. Retired Air Force Lt. Gen. Patrick P. Caruana, a board member since 1996, assumed leadership of the board.

ASSASSINATED: Gunmen shot and killed Guinea-Bissau President João Bernardo Vieira, 69, just hours after his longtime rival, Gen. Batiste Tagmé Na Waié, died in a bomb attack. Waié supporters reportedly blamed Vieira for the death of the general, who was chief of the armed forces. That sparked the retaliatory killing March 2 in the politically troubled West African nation. Former parliament speaker Raimundo Pereira will serve as interim president until elections are called within two months.

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DIED: Playwright Horton Foote, who won an Oscar for his screen adaptation of Harper Lee's To Kill a Mockingbird, died March 4 at the age of 92. Foote's plays, including his Pulitzer Prize-winning The Young Man From Atlanta, frequently featured characters and storylines that captured the essence of everyday life in small-town America.

APPOINTED: The Evangelical Council for Financial Accountability (ECFA) selected Dan Busby to serve as the new president of the national accreditation organization. Busby is the author of two tax and finance manuals for ministers and churches that Zondervan annually revises and publishes.

RECOVERING: Former first lady Barbara Bush, 83, underwent open heart surgery March 4 to replace her aortic valve. Doctors expect her to make a full recovery.

KNIGHTED: British Prime Minister Gordon Brown announced March 4 that Queen Elizabeth II will bestow an honorary knighthood on Sen. Edward Kennedy, D-Mass., 77, for his work in bringing peace to Northern Ireland and promoting health care and education around the world.

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