Five stories that have North Texas talking: a lion injures a zookeeper at the Dallas Zoo; it’s the first day of school for most kids in North Texas; the Rev. Bill McElvaney has died; and more.
A lion bit and scratched a zookeeper at the Dallas Zoo over the weekend. The incident happened Saturday when lions were transferred in the off-exhibit lion house. The zookeeper didn’t secure a door, which allowed a female lion into the space. The zookeeper used pepper spray to escape, zoo officials say. The lion was sedated, but wasn’t injured -- she was doing well Sunday. The zookeeper was taken to a local hospital and was at home Sunday. “The lion was separated from the public at all times by three locked doors, and guests were never in danger,” the zoo said in a statement. The lion, as well as other lions, remain in their habitat, the zoo says.
- The Rev. Bill McElvaney, the United Methodist minister who officiated a same-sex wedding in Dallas in March, has died. He was 86. The Dallas Morning News reports that his death was announced Sunday to members of Northaven United Methodist Church, where he was emeritus pastor. McElvaney also was a former SMU professor. The News reports: “He was briefly suspended after officiating a same-sex wedding in March. He protested the Iraq War and construction of the George W. Bush Presidential Center at SMU.” McElvaney was a “tireless prophet and preacher” who “took bold stands” to help those who were often marginalized in society, Northaven pastor Eric Folkerth wrote in a note to the congregation.
- Monday is the first day back to school for many students across North Texas. Help KERA mark the big day! Parents and kids, teachers and administrators: We want to see your back-to-school pictures; your Tweets; your observations of what’s happening; memories of school days gone by; anything and everything related to the first day of school. Are you creative? Perhaps you want to send us a short audio postcard and email it to us at KERA. Or write down your note about the first day of school and snap a picture of it and send it to us. Tweet us at @KERANews and use the hashtag #KERAYearbook. Or send them to theKERANews Facebook page. Or email pictures and notes to us at firstname.lastname@example.org. We’ll post them on KERANews.org.
- Guess who’s the new traffic reporter on WFAA-TV’s morning news? A cop. WFAA is calling him “Corporal Nick.” His full name is Nick Bristow, according to Ed Bark, the longtime TV critic who operates UncleBarky.com: “The roly poly DeSoto cop, again in full uniform, still tends to skid in and out of his segments for WFAA8’s No. 3-rated early morning program. Whether he’ll emerge as an authority figure with a guy next door appeal remains to be seen. His most notable on-camera misdemeanor at the moment is a tendency to dart his eyes to the left (and viewers’ right) at the close of his segments. He’s still a bit stiff, too. But eye contact and body language can be learned if viewers are willing to play along with the D-FW market’s first full-time uniformed roads warrior.” WFAA notes on its Facebook page that Bristow continues to work for DeSoto police.
- Now you can check out the Dallas Museum of Art from your laptop. The museum has announced a redesigned digital database improves online access and representation of the museum’s more than 22,000 works of art. The DMA notes in a press release: “Prior to this launch, only 7,000 works of art were published online. Of those, approximately 3,000 were illustrated with images. Today, the Museum’s entire collection of over 22,000 objects is available to the public via DMA.org, and nearly 11,000 of those objects are illustrated with digital images.”