Five stories that have North Texas talking: Guinness World Records recognized the 30-year-old Siamese as the world’s oldest feline; Fort Worth superintendent won’t resign over bathroom policy; what’s next for the class of ‘17?; and more.
A Siamese cat from Mansfield, Texas has indubitably lived his nine lives to the fullest, celebrating his 30th birthday on March 26. That accomplishment earned Scooter the Guinness World Record on Tuesday, surpassing the previous title-holder, 26-year-old Corduroy of Sisters, Oregon.
Although Scooter keeps busy traveling (He has visited 45 states.), owner Gail Floyd told Guinness, he maintains a life of simple pleasures: staying active, getting blow-dried after a bath and snacking on chicken every other day. Although he’s had his struggles — losing his mother at four weeks of age and undergoing medical treatment since breaking his leg in 2014 — he’s 10-15 years beyond the average lifespan of his breed.
Scooter’s longevity has become part of a Texas feline legacy —the oldest cat of all-time was Creme Puff, 38, of Austin, who died in 2005. Read about how Scooter stays young. [Guinness World Records, The Associated Press]
- Fort Worth superintendent says he will not resign per Lt. Gov. Dan Patrick’s request over district’s bathroom policy. Kent Scribner directed the employees of Fort Worth Independent School District to "acknowledge the gender identity that each student consistently and uniformly asserts," permitting them to use the bathroom that aligns with their gender identity. The Texas Tribune reported: “Patrick's call for Scribner's resignation comes during an increasingly tense battle over rights of transgender people across the country. North Carolina and the U.S. Department of Justice sparred over the state's House Bill 2, which would prohibit people from using public restrooms that do not align with their biological sex. Patrick and other conservative leaders have pledged to pursue a similar law during next year's legislative session in Texas.” Read more. [The Texas Tribune]
- Junior year is pivotal — it’s when high school students start deciding what comes after graduation. For Joel Luera, the decision came early. He currently takes college courses at Eastfield College as a part of W.W. Samuell Early College High School in Dallas. Luera’s always been a standout student — something KERA’s Stella Chávez has known since 2013 when she started reporting on his journey from eighth grade to senior year as a part of the ongoing project, Class of ‘17. But this year hasn’t been easy for Luera. Learn why in the new series, “American Graduate: What’s Next For The Class of ‘17?” [KERA News]
- In 2015, 102 people — the most ever — were killed in traffic accidents on Austin streets. There are several factors contributing to these crashes, like speed, distraction and impaired driving, but the city’s not sure why last year’s surge in fatalities happened. KUT’s project “The Road to Zero” will report on what the city is doing to address the main contributing factors and make Austin safer. Explore KUT’s full coverage thus far, including stories about traveling on foot, combating homelessness and establishing a Vision Zero plan. [KUT]
- Watch a Loveland firemen save 10 ducklings trapped in a storm drain. It was a slow day for The Loveland Fire Rescue Authority, but one mother was having the most harrowing experience of her life, so the team took the call. Watch the rescue captured by Loveland resident Don Oft of the Mother’s Day rescue. [WFAA]