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Local News

  • Medical evolution: Robotic surgery arrives

    The da Vinci Surgical System brings high-tech medicine to doctors’ fingertips.

    Dr. Harvey Taub, a urologist at Associates for Urology Care, was the first surgeon to use the five-armed robot more than four years ago at Munroe Regional Medical Center.

    He recently gave a talk about the machine at Central Florida Community College. Residents listened as he explained the types of procedures the machine can be used for and its benefits.

  • Hygiene program helping needy children

    Soap, toothpaste and shampoo are some of the simple necessities in life. But, for more than 1,500 school-aged children living in Marion County, these necessities would not be readily available if it weren’t for the Homeless-Needy Children’s Personal Hygiene program.

  • Plant taken from store

    Blaise Bonaventure figures the thieves who made off with a plant from in front of his B-Healthy store in the Friendship Center knew what they were doing.

    Sometime between the close of business Saturday, June 6, and Monday morning, June 8, someone took off with a 6- to 7-foot schefflera plant. The plant was estimated to weigh  35 to 45 pounds.

    The plant had graced the store for about 19 years and many of those years outside.

  • Stacks of colorful scarves, afghans and hats line the tables of the Pine Run room — and each had a purpose.

    The mission of the newly formed Knit and Crochet Group of Pine Run is to help needy children. In January 2009, the eight women began sewing at the clubhouse each Tuesday. Six months later, they had made more than 100 clothing pieces.

  • Cretul talks stimulus plan, reductions

    State Rep. Larry Cretul (District 22) discussed the current issues facing the State of Florida at this month’s S.R. 200 Coalition meeting.

    The speaker of the House, who has an office on the Corridor, talked about the budget and ways to save money, the increased tobacco tax, President Obama’s stimulus package and Senate Bill 360.

  • Calf calamity

    When Thomas Wesley Harrell went to feed his cows one morning earlier this week, he encountered an unpleasant situation.

    He discovered that his three-month-old female calf was trapped inside a well, according to a press release from Marion County Fire Rescue (MCFR).

    Emergency personnel responded to Harrell’s location on the 5300 block of S.E. 34th Street at 10:24 a.m. and found the  calf trapped in the 12-foot-deep  well.

  • Visiting Don Garlits'

    To continue our Marion County museum series, suppose I told you Don Garlits Museum of Drag Racing is different from any other car museum. Suppose I said it is because Don’s museum doesn’t have any cars.

    He displays dragsters. And a dragster certainly isn’t a car, being mostly a monstrous engine bolted onto rails under a next-to-nothing body and having dinky bicycle wheels up front plus huge slick tires in back.

  • Park contest entries keep rolling in

    More than a week into the contest to name the newest county park on S.R 200, about 145 entries have already been submitted.

    In fact, Marion County Parks and Recreation Department received so many responses in such a short period of time that the e-mail system locked up, said Cynthia Fifelski, administrative assistant for the parks department. The system, which was set up to receive 100 suggestions, was down for about four to five hours on Monday. To ensure it does not happen again, the e-mail has been changed to receive more entries.

  • Every child is a winner Every child is a winner in church youth sports

    This is the theme at the second youth sports activity this year sponsored by Joy Lutheran Church.

    Since the public schools have had to cut back on sports activities, programs like this are important in the community. There are few Upward Christian sports programs in the area and the one at Joy Lutheran Church is the only one in southwest Ocala.

  • At OTOW: Knowing the vital signs

    What are the signs of a heart attack or stroke? What can a bystander do if someone is having a medical emergency?

    Joel Matthias, EMS captain of Marion County Fire Rescue, answered those questions and more during a recent talk at On Top of the World, as part of National EMS Week. He also gave residents some tips about what to do when an emergency occurs.