Nation roundup for November 28


Boy swept to sea is still missing

SAN FRANCISCO (AP) — Howard Kuljian and his family were out for a walk on a damp, overcast morning at Big Lagoon state beach on Saturday, playing fetch with their dog Fran as 8- to 10-foot surf churned the water just feet away like a washing machine.

Kuljian tossed a stick that took the dog down to the water’s edge, and in an instant, authorities said, a wave swallowed it, setting off a nightmarish scramble. In the end, Kuljian, 54, his wife Mary Scott, 57, and son Gregory “Geddie” Kuljian were all engulfed by the roiling waters after trying to save the dog, then each other. The two parents’ bodies were later recovered, but the Coast Guard called off a search for the boy.

The Humboldt County coroner’s office said Tuesday that the body of the 16-year-old boy still had not been found.

The couple’s 18-year-old daughter, Olivia, and Gregory’s girlfriend could only watch from the beach as the horror unfolded. The dog later made its way safely back onto the beach.

Mourners wore green again on Tuesday in a gut-wrenching tribute to teenage boy. Students at Arcata High School wore his favorite color as they tried to come to terms with the sudden, tragic loss of the well-liked family.

“His parents treated me like I was one of their own. They treated everyone like their own children no matter who it was,” said Jacob Swindle, a close friend of the family.

Stocks slide amid fiscal cliff worries

NEW YORK (AP) — Stocks slumped on Wall Street Tuesday after Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid said he was frustrated by the lack of progress in talks over the U.S. budget impasse in Washington.

The Dow Jones industrial average closed down 89.24 points to 12,878.13. The Dow and other indexes had been moving between small gains and losses for most of the day, then turned lower after Reid’s comments in the early afternoon.

“We have to get away from the happy talk and start talking about specific things,” Reid told reporters in televised comments.

The Standard & Poor’s 500 lost 7.35 points to 1,398.94 and the Nasdaq composite index lost 8.99 points to 2,967.79.

Worries about the budget talks have been hanging over the stock market for weeks. Stocks slumped immediately after the Nov. 6 election over concerns that politicians would be unable to reach a deal to trim the deficit before a Jan. 1 deadline.

If that deadline isn’t met, under current law a series of sharp tax increases and spending cuts known as the “fiscal cliff” will come into effect.

Suspect in girl’s death was friend

BENTONVILLE, Ark. (AP) — The neighbor charged in the killing of a 6-year-old Arkansas girl was a family friend, police said Tuesday.

Bentonville Police Chief Jon Simpson described Zachary Holly, 28, as “an acquaintance” and a family friend who is from the area. Holly is being held in the Benton County Jail on charges of capital murder, kidnapping and residential burglary.

Jersey Bridgeman, whose high-profile child abuse case last year sent her father and stepmother to prison, was reported missing the morning of Nov. 20. Minutes after a search for her began, Jersey’s body was discovered in an abandoned house two doors from her home in Bentonville.

Holly and his wife live next door to where Jersey was staying, police said. Court records show the couple was married in March. Holly worked at a fast-food restaurant, Simpson said.

Simpson said the couple didn’t have any children, but that Holly’s wife has a child who is “pretty much the same age as our victim.” Simpson would not give specifics on how well the families knew each other.

When asked if Jersey and the child of Holly’s wife were friends, Simpson said, “I think you could categorize them as family friends.”

‘Casablanca’ piano up for sale

NEW YORK (AP) — The piano used for the song “As Times Goes By” in the classic 1942 film “Casablanca” is getting another turn at fame.

The instrument is going up for sale at Sotheby’s in New York on Dec. 14, and the auction house estimates it’ll fetch up to $1.2 million.

It’s being offered by a Japanese collector on the film’s 70th anniversary.

The collector purchased the movie prop at a Sotheby’s auction in 1988 for $154,000.

Humphrey Bogart played Rick Blaine in the Oscar-winning World War II love story, opposite Ingrid Bergman’s character, Ilsa Lund. In a famous flashback scene, Rick and Ilsa lean on the piano at a Paris bistro. Sam, played by Dooley Wilson, plays and sings. They toast as Rick says: “Here’s looking at you, kid.”

 

Rules for posting comments