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AN AGGIE LINE: USU cheerleaders perform during the Aggies' final exhibition game. It's time to cheer for basketball. / Photo by Brianna Mortensen

Today's word on journalism

Friday, November 10, 2006

Q&A with Ed Bradley:

Q: What single issue should be covered more at CBS News?
A: Foreign news.

Q: Have you ever been assigned a story you objected to? How did you deal with it?
A: When I first started in New York at WCBS radio, the assignment editor automatically assigned any story that had a minority in it to me. I objected to being typecast and told him if I didn't get a variety of stories -- as other reporters did -- then I would take it up with the news director.

Q: If you were not in news, what would you be doing?
A: If I had the talent, I'd play bass guitar and sing in a kicking band.

--Ed Bradley, reporter, "60 Minutes," died yesterday of leukemia at age 65 (2006)

And the walls come tumbling down

24-7: Work crews labor through the night after demolition. / Photo by Brooke Barker

By Brooke Barker

October 17, 2006 | A crew in place: all ready for lights, camera and destruction! Extreme Makeover got underway Tuesday with a slew of spectators and volunteers vying for the perfect spot to sit and watch the walls come crashing in and possibly catch a glimpse of Ty Pennington, the show's host.

Jen Hamann and her sister Krystal Barlow came out around 6:15 a.m. with hopes to be near the front of the volunteer march to the site and have a good spot for the demolition. Despite the chilly temperatures, they managed to meet Preston Sharp, a member of the design team for the show and snag an autograph.

"I'm skipping a few classes, but I'll be back for a test this afternoon," Barlow, a USU student, said.

At around 10:15 a.m., the crowd began chanting, "Tear it down! Tear it down!" as two backhoes moved into place for the perfect shot for the show's camera crew-- after all, you can only completely obliterate a house once.

"It's been overwhelming," said Ati Velasquez. "There's been a lot of crying, laughing, smiling, and crying. It's a constant cycle."

Velasquez's family was selected Sunday for the show and is currently in the U.S. Virgin Islands until Sunday, Oct. 22, when their new home will be revealed. She recently married and no longer lives with her mother, Janet Pauni, and eight siblings.

"I'm looking forward to their reaction on Sunday," Velasquez said. She will be helping throughout the week as a volunteer on the house, which was her choice over the vacation.

"The producer of the show asked if I would have liked to go with my family, but I really think I'd rather help here," Velasquez said.


STUDENTS HELP OUT: USU students Heather Day and Miles Erickson collect trash off the street while the concrete is setting for the Paunis' new home. Both freshmen, Erickson and Day volunteered for the midnight-to-4-a.m. shift at the site. Because the concrete was poured at 11:45 p.m. Tuesday and needed a few hours to set, and the rest of the crew were digging for pipes, volunteers were doing jobs such as cleaning up the street around 1 a.m. Wednesday. "We brought the construction crew some water and food. They keep saying they're sorry there isn't much for us to do," said Day. "It's OK. Helping gives me such a happy feeling." Day started volunteering in the afternoon Tuesday and when she heard there could be a chance to serve during the night she jumped at it. "They called me in on standby and I came," she said. By the time Day and Erickson finished they had about two-and-a-half hours to sleep before class at 7:30. / Photos by Irene Gudmundson

Hundreds of volunteers besides Velasquez have gotten involved since Monday, bringing expertise or just extra hands to pass out water on-site.

Dick Sackett is one of those lending his time and crews to the project. Sackett is the Vice President of LeGrand Johnson Construction Company, the concrete provider for the home.

"It's been really exciting, and it's for such a good cause, but it's a little bit stressful too," he said. Sackett and his men added a 5 percent accelerator to the concrete mix, which means they had to get it in place in less time.

"The concrete has to set up much faster than normal because of the schedule, and so they can start building on it," said Sackett. "With colder weather, it takes a longer duration to set up."

The process is safe though, and the only reason most people don't use it on their own homes is because of the cost--- about an extra $60 per cubic yard. Sackett's crew kept the concrete warm throughout the night to speed up the process and prevent cracking, with electric blankets.

Sackett said the crew has been pretty excited about helping and even came out and helped clear out the house Monday, taking 25 loads to the Logan Landfill.

"We've just got to keep going," he said.

LeGrand Johnson Construction crews will also be working on the driveway, sidewalk and steps after finishing the footings and foundation.

Volunteers and crews will be working around the clock as what Ed Sanders, a member of the design team, called "angels without wings" earlier this week.

Ty Pennington goofs with reporters at the site of the Pauni house. / Photo by Rebekah Bradway


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