Night Mourners Pay Their Respects to Nelson Mandela
The world has come together to mourn the loss of Nelson Mandela, with his funeral expected to be one of the biggest in history. Leaders from across the world, including British Prime Minister David Cameron, ordered their flags to be flown at half mast today, in honor of Mandela. 7.2 million tweets were recorded in the five hours after the announcement of Mandela’s death.
South African President Jacob Zuma has announced the plans for the ten-day funeral period. Today was a day for national mourning and remembrance in South Africa, and next Tuesday a public memorial service will be held at the 95,000 capacity FNB stadium in Soweto, where Mandela gave his last public appearance, during the 2010 World Cup. His body will be put in an glass-topped coffin and placed in Pretoria’s government buildings for three days, before a public funeral followed by a private funeral for his family.
Nelson Mandela (1918-2013)
Former South African president, and one of history’s most beloved men, Nelson Mandela, has died at the age of 95. Mandela had bravely fought on the brink of death for years, but could fight no longer, and died at home with his family. South African President Jacob Zuma said, “He is now resting. He is now at peace.”
Mandela became a symbol of freedom when he led the fight against apartheid during his five years as leader of South Africa. He spent 27 years in prison before gaining power, and in the process becoming a worldwide icon. Leaders from across the globe have been quick to praise Mandela and wish their condolences to his family.
The Prelude Was Launched for the First Time Today
Shell launched the largest ship in history today. The ship, named Prelude, is a whopping 1,601 feet, 150 feet longer than the Empire State Building is high! The stats are staggering with this mega-ship, which Shell hopes to have refining liquid natural gas by 2017. It weights 600,000 tons, and has three 6,700-horsepower engines. It will process 175 Olympic swimming pools of liquid natural gas in a year.
Calling Prelude a ship is a bit of misnomer, since it will be moved to Western Australia and be anchored there, staying until 2042. Its mooring, along with a 305-foot turret, anchors the ship so well that it can easily withstand a Category 5 hurricane.. You’d think Shell would be proud of their record breaking ship, but they’re already planning on building a bigger one.
Okene Still Believes he Survived Thanks to Divine Intervention
The remarkable story of Harrison Odjegba Okene has been revealed as the video of his rescue was posted online this week, quickly going viral. 6 months ago, the ship Okene was a cook on a ship that suddenly sunk at about 4:30 AM. He rushed to one of the cabins, and built himself a platform of two mattresses as the cold water began to rise.
He spent three days in his tiny air bubble that formed, with only a single bottle of Coke. When rescue divers found the ship, they found the other 10 crew members of the ship dead. When they swam towards Okene, they thought he was another corpse, and reached out to grab him when he suddenly grabbed their hands. Experts say the cook wouldn’t have been able to survive much longer, as his oxygen was rapidly dwindling.
The Incident has Come Under Intense Scrutiny in the Country
Icelandic police have killed someone for the first time in the history of the nation’s police. A 59 year-old man was shooting his shotgun in his apartment in the capital city Reykjavik. When police arrived, he began to fire at them, so they threw tear gas canisters into his apartment.
However, this failed to subdue the man, and police eventually shot and killed the unidentified man. Iceland has one of the lowest crime rates in the world and shooting are virtually unknown. The police force has said it regrets shooting and killing the man, and counseling is being provided to the special forces team.
John McGarrigle Shows Reporters a Photo of his Father, Who Was at the Bar at the Time of the Crash, as he Desperately Searches for him
Scotland has held vigils and services for the 8 victims of a horrific helicopter crash that occurred earlier this week in Glasgow. A police helicopter crashed into The Clutha bar, which was packed at the time. The three men on the helicopter, two police officers and a civilian pilot, were killed, as well as 5 customers in the bar.
All Scottish Cup matches today held a minute of silence for the victims. Remarkably, a Glasgow firefighter, Frank McKeown, played in one of those matches, as his Stanraer side played against Clyde. McKeown had only an hour of sleep, but refused to even think about what he viewed as letting his team down by not playing. The two sides drew 2-2, meaning a replay will be required.
I’ve returned home, so now I have internet access once again, and my posts can return to becoming daily. Thanks for your patience, and I apologize for the days I missed.
Ison Was Believed to have Died When Nothing was Seen in the Place Where it Should’ve Been (Marked by a Cross)
Scientists and stargazers across the world are desperately hoping Comet Ison is still alive, for different reasons. The comet was declared “dead” after it failed to re-emerge from behind the Sun, with scientists believing the comet failed to survive its encounter. But recent photographs show a small speck that could be part of the comet.
Ison can’t be declared “alive” once again, as it may brighten and provide a brilliant show for stargazers, or it may fizzle out and simply disappear. Scientists are wishing the comet survived, because they long to study its course and how it may have survived a seemingly deadly collision with the Sun.
Japan and China Have Been Arguing Over the Islands for Years
The US has reaffirmed its support of Japan as the country’s ongoing dispute with China over islands in the East China Sea continues to grow. U.S. Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel called the Japanese Defense Minister, Itsunori Onodera and told him Japan’s treaty covered the islands, as well as commending the Japanese for “exercising appropriate restraint.”
China recently established a new airspace defense zone on the islands. In China they are referred to as Diaoyu, but the Japanese refer to the islands as Senkaku. The islands are tiny and uninhabited, but are in a key location in the East China Sea, and experts say China is testing Japan’s power by claiming the islands.
After Losing Their Title, the Richards were Determined to Reclaim it
The Richards family from Canberra, Australia has claimed the Guinness World Record for the world’s biggest Christmas lights display, with a whopping 502,165 bulbs. This is the second time the remarkable family has claimed the record, the first in 2011, with a little over 300,000 bulbs. Their neighbors are not impressed, with some refusing to speak to the Richards anymore.
31 miles of wire have been installed around their house to accommodate the bulbs. The amazing light display costs over $2,200 a month to keep up, but the sum has been donated by a generous local electricity company. David Richards insists that the majority of his neighbors support their Christmas spirit.
I apologize for the lack of posts lately. We are working out of state this week and don’t have access to internet most of the time, so I can only post when we do have access. By the end of the week, everything will be normal once again, and I can post daily.
The Roof Collapsed During Rush-Hour Shopping
Latvian President Andris Berzins has slammed the supermarket roof collapse that has killed 54 people since November 21st, with 7 more still missing. Three days of mourning have begun in the country as it faces its worst disaster since its independence, in 1991. President Berzins also called the collapse “our own made disaster.”
It is believed the weight of soil and other materials from a garden of the roof caused the supermarket’s roof to collapse. The last section of the roof fell today, which caused panic nearby. The collapse of the final piece caused a neighboring shopping center to shake violently, which drove customers outside, in a panic.