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Mega Parenting Event This Weekend

ATLANTA -- One of America's leading parenting experts is coming to Atlanta this weekend for three days of events aimed at helping parents raise principled, purposeful kids in today's complex world.

John Rosemond, whose nationally-syndicated column appears weekly in the Atlanta Journal-Constitution, will join with Connect With Kids founder Stacey Dewitt for the program at South Forsyth High School on Saturday, October 2, Marist School on Sunday, October 3, and Mount Paran Christian School on Monday, October 4.

Rosemond has written 14 books on parenting.  DeWitt is an attorney, an award-winning journalist, and mom who regularly appears as a parenting expert on 11Alive News and on other news outlets nationwide.

The events at South Forsyth High and Marist School cost $20 per person or $35 per couple.  The Mount Paran event costs $12 per person.

Earthquake Survivor Gets A New Arm


ATLANTA -- A life-changing trip to Atlanta is coming to an end soon for an earthquake survivor from Haiti.

Guerline Charles will return next week with a new arm and a full heart.

"I will go with everyone here in my heart," Charles said through her friend and interpreter Rachel Isons, who is also from Haiti. "I will not forget them. I will not forget the amazing love." 

Charles arrived in Atlanta in May to heal from the devastating earthquake that rocked her homeland.

When it hit in January, she spent two days trapped in the rubble of a school building with her arm crushed by concrete. She was the only survivor in her classroom.

Doctors decided there was no way to save her arm without risking her life.

"The minute they told me they had to amputate, yes, I did grieve and cry," she said. "Then I decided I need to live."

Interesting Georgia High School Mascots

ATLANTA -- Georgia high schools have some of the most interesting  mascots in the country. Atlanta.HighSchoolSports.net takes a look at some of them.

Brantley County Blue Herons: Brantley County's school is basically in a swamp about 20 miles from the Atlantic Ocean in Caney Bay. Though the Blue Herons are not a common mascot, they serve sports well. According to Nature.org, herons are "territorial and will aggressively defend their nests from interlopers."

Cairo Syrupmakers: The Syrupmakers will be at the top of any list of unique mascots. Though many people believe the name comes from Karo syrup, Karo is not from Cairo. Rodenberry's is the syrup that calls the South Georgia city home. The school's women's teams are referred to as Syrupmaids.

Is Texting-While-Driving Ban Making an Impact?

ATLANTA -- Early data from Georgia, and the most recent national study, suggest texting bans aren't as effective as most wish they were.

The numbers show a very heated law off to a very slow start.

READ: Highway Loss Data Institute Findings

In Georgia, Governor Sonny Perdue signed a texting-while-driving ban into law earlier this year; it went into effect in July and started getting enforced in August.

"Since then, we have issued 30 citations," said Trooper 1st Class Carlos Searcy of the Georgia State Patrol.

That's less than one per day.

Randi Passoff Passes Away

ATLANTA -- Loved ones will gather Friday to celebrate the life of Randi Passoff, a warrior in the fight against breast cancer and founder of the Atlanta 2-Day Walk.

A two-time breast cancer survivor, Randi was determined not to let the disease that kills thousands of women every year break her stride.

After the Avon Breast Cancer Walk left Atlanta in 2004, Randi had a plan. She took the reins and created the Atlanta 2-Day Walk for Breast Cancer, a 30 mile walk to raise awareness and money for breast cancer research. This year's walk runs Oct. 2 through 3. 

It's been seven years since the first one, and the organization Randi founded has raised nearly $7 million and awarded 107 local grants to breast cancer organizations.

DeKalb Gets Federal Funds to Fight Fat

ATLANTA -- DeKalb County is getting $2.35 million in federal cash to help residents slim down.

The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services is giving the grant to the DeKalb Board of Health and says it must be used for obesity prevention.

Initiatives can include promoting healthy eating, exercise and discouraging tobacco use.

The DeKalb grant is part of $31 million in federal funds awarded
to communities across the nation.

Other communities to receive funding include Mobile, Ala. and North Little Rock, Ark., along with the South Carolina Department of Health and Environmental Control.

Owners of Blighted, Foreclosed Homes in DeKalb County Face $1000 a Day Fines

DECATUR, Ga. -- The hammer's about to come down, hard, in DeKalb County on owners of foreclosed homes who let their properties deteriorate.

DeKalb is the first local government in Georgia to crack down like this; beginning October 25, owners of any blighted, foreclosed homes in DeKalb County will have to pay a fine of $1,000 a day until they fix them up and clean them up.

"Somebody's coming after them now," said Homeowner Brenda Pace Tuesday evening.

Her neighborhood's story is an old, sad one -- with, maybe, a new, happy ending.

Pace is President of the East Lake Terrace Neighborhood Association, off of Glenwood Ave. in DeKalb County.