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July 17, 2020 GMT

CORONAVIRUS GROUNDS THUNDERBIRDS AHEAD OF WYOMING SHOW

CHEYENNE, Wyo. (AP) — Coronavirus among U.S. Air Force personnel has grounded the Thunderbirds. The fighter jet demonstration team was scheduled to perform in Cheyenne, Wyoming, next Wednesday but has canceled because some team members have tested positive. Thunderbirds spokeswoman Capt. Remoshay Nelson says regulations prohibit the Air Force from saying how many personnel have the virus and their conditions, but none of them is a pilot. Most of the Thunderbirds’ scheduled shows are canceled amid public health orders banning large crowds. They were set to perform during the Cheyenne Frontier Days rodeo festival, which also is canceled because of the coronavirus.

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SPACE STATION POWER UPGRADES NEARLY FINISHED AFTER SPACEWALK

CAPE CANAVERAL, Fla. (AP) — Spacewalking astronauts have completed their part of a three-year power upgrade to the International Space Station. NASA’s Bob Behnken and Chris Cassidy replaced six more outdated batteries with powerful new ones Thursday. It was their third spacewalk in as many weeks involving battery work. Their fourth spacewalk next week will focus on other chores. The effort to replace the space station’s 48 old batteries began in 2017. They were replaced by 24 new lithium-ion batteries, so powerful only half as many are needed. One new battery shorted out in 2019 and two old batteries had to be re-installed. A final spacewalk remains, likely this fall, to wrap everything up.

ANNIVERSARY OF WORLD’S 1ST ATOMIC TEST FUELS NUCLEAR DEBATE

ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. (AP) — The nation’s top nuclear security official was in New Mexico yesterday to commemorate the 75th anniversary of the world’s first atomic explosion. The test is both revered for the scientific advancements it helped to usher in and vilified for the moral and diplomatic implications that still linger in its wake. Lisa Gordon-Hagerty, head of the National Nuclear Security Administration, says the Trinity Test in 1945 helped to avert wars and saved untold millions of lives over the years through advancements in nuclear medicine and science. For others, the atomic test in southern New Mexico and subsequent tests elsewhere have left a painful legacy.

LAS VEGAS MAN ARRESTED AFTER HOMELESS MAN DIES FROM BACKFLIP

LAS VEGAS (AP) — The Las Vegas Police Department has arrested a 28-year-old man after police say he offered a homeless man $6 to do a backflip and live streamed the stunt, which resulted in a spinal injury and death. Keonte Jones was charged with willful disregard of a person’s safety after filming 55-year-old Larry Coner attempting to perform a backflip and landing on his neck in June. Police say Jones streamed the encounter on Facebook Live, which shows Jones laughing and telling others around not to call for help. Coner was taken to University Medical Center and died June 30 from his injuries. Online court records don’t list an attorney for Jones.

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