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N.C. Wreck Claims 4 Members of a Gwinnett Family

Washington County, N.C. - - The North Carolina Highway Patrol confirms four members of a family from Gwinnett County, including two young children, died after an SUV lost control in a weather-related accident Thursday afternoon.

The wreck, on U.S. 64, west of Creswell, happened around 12:20 p.m.

The dead are identified as 27-year-old Daniel Alvarez, who was the driver, 29-year-old Natalie Owens, one-year-old Ariela Alvarez and three-year-old Zacharia Alvarez. Ezeikel Alvarez, Zacharia's twin, survived and is being treated at a hospital.

Witnesses told the Highway Patrol that the Jeep hydroplaned on the highway, and went off the right side of the road. The vehicle then ran down a small hill, hit an embankment and flipped over into a canal.

Troopers say those killed appeared to have drowned.

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.

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.

Revisiting Week Five's HS Football Predictions

Fayetteville, GA -- Massey Matchups correctly picked the winner of 15 out of 17 games in Week Four. Did the computer predictor tool have similar results in Week Five?

In the Atlanta.HighSchoolSports.net's Game of the Week, Starr's Mill was expected to tie Whitewater 20-20. The computer regarded Starr's Mill as the better team, but gave Whitewater the benefit of home field advantage. Starr's Mill actually won the game 21-14.

Buford was supposed to make up for their 2009 loss to Lovett with a 26-19 win this year. The Wolves got their revenge, but the computer underestimated Buford. Coach Jess Simpson's team beat Lovett 37-14.

Week 5 Massey Matchups Predictions

FAYETTEVILLE, GA -- Starr's Mill at Whitewater handily won Game of the Week with 65 percent of the vote, but will it turn out to be the closest contest? Massey Matchups lets us know.

 The Region 3-4A Division B matchup should have playoff implications for the undefeated Starr's Mill Panthers and the one-loss Wildcats. Both teams are undefeated in their region since Whitewater's lone loss came at the hands of defending 4A champ Sandy Creek, who is now in 3A.  

The two teams are expected to play to a 20-20 draw. But if the game were at Starr's Mill's place or on a neutral field, Massey Matchups gives Starr's Mill the edge.

Teacher Has Secret Way Of Getting Children To Talk

"Is Mr. Lemur ready? Pass Mr. Lemur," Sherri Cline said to a group of third graders in the media center at Buford Academy.

As it turns out, Mr. Lemur is a stuffed lemur that Cline gives to kids to encourage them to talk. In Cline's class, Mr. Lemur's the only one with permission to speak.

"Mr. Lemur lets the children who like to talk, talk and for the children who are a little bit shy, Mr. Lemur, can talk for them," said Cline.

This is a steady job Mr. Lemur's had for many years.

"They love Mr. Lemur. He got a bath this weekend for this. To be on TV? Well, he's loved a lot," said Cline.

But, they don't love her any more than they do, Ms. Cline.

"I say "guys we're going to the media center today and the children say, 'yes'", said Lacretia Smith, a third grade teacher.

The kids soon learn their teacher and Ms. Cline have a special bond.

Week Five Game of the Week Nominees

HIRAM, GA -- The high school football season is wearing on and most teams are finally into region play. As far as the playoffs go, region play is all that matters, and Atlanta.HighSchoolSports.net's Game of the Week nominations are all down that alley.

Kell and Hiram are both 4-0 and battling it out for a playoff spot in the competitive Region 5-4A North. And making the postseason in a sub-region with seven teams is no easy task.

Kell has handed Grayson, Etowah, Woodstock, and East Paulding, all 3-1 teams, their only losses of the season. The wins would not be described as blowouts, though. The Longhorns have won their four four games by a combined 27 points.

Hiram is in the opposite position. The Hornets have been blowing through opposing teams, but their schedule has not been that tough. Hiram's four wins have come against teams with a combined 4-11 record.