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CNN Student News Transcript: October 29, 2007

  • Story Highlights
  • Learn about NASA's current mission to the international space station
  • Examine the role that arson may have played in the California wildfires
  • Discover how some U.S. Naval Academy alumni honored their fallen classmates
  • Next Article in Living »
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(CNN Student News) -- October 29, 2007

Quick Guide

Building the Space Station - Learn about NASA's current mission to the international space station.

California Burning - Examine the role that arson may have played in the California wildfires.

Run to Honor - Discover how some U.S. Naval Academy alumni honored their fallen classmates.



MONICA LLOYD, CNN STUDENT NEWS ANCHOR: It's a brand new week, and we're glad you're getting it started with CNN Student News. Hey, everybody. I'm Monica Lloyd. Let's kick things off today with a space-based Shoutout.


GEORGE RAMSAY, CNN STUDENT NEWS: Time for the Shoutout! How long is an astronaut supposed to sleep each day at the international space station? If you think you know it, shout it out! Is it: A) Four hours, B) Six hours, C) Eight hours or D) In space, you never sleep? You've got three seconds -- GO! Astronauts are scheduled for eight hours of sleep each day while aboard the space station. When it's time to get up, Mission Control in Houston sends music like this to wake up the crew. That's your answer and that's your Shoutout!

First Up: Building the Space Station

LLOYD: After they wake up, the astronauts can't spend too much time gazing out at that wonderful world, even though they do have a pretty good view. That's because there's work to be done, and right now, there's a lot of it. The space shuttle Discovery blasted off on a mission to the orbiting station last week, and they brought along a pretty big "to do" list. Carl Azuz tells us what's on it.


CARL AZUZ, CNN STUDENT NEWS: The International Space Station is a cooperative effort of 16 countries, and the latest mission there is kind of like adding a room to a house: There's a new section to install, a lot of heavy stuff to move around and the hope that when everything's done, more people will be able to visit. Let's start with Harmony. This is the "new room," so to speak. It's a module about the size of a school bus that'll connect the Japanese, European and American segments at the international space station.

MIKE SUFFREDINI, ISS PROGRAM MANAGER: We're well on our way to getting the ISS configured so that we can bring on our partners here over the next few months.

AZUZ: Like part of a home, though, you can't just plug it in. The space shuttle Discovery is currently "parked" in one of the spaces Harmony needs. So, it won't be until after the shuttle leaves that the remaining space crew will be able to put the new room in its permanent spot and open it up to visitors. Another part of this mission: repositioning a giant solar power tower. The laboratories aboard the ISS need electricity, and recent missions have added more power systems. So yesterday, astronauts stepped out on their second of five planned spacewalks to move one of the power stations. First, it had to be disconnected.

DEREK HASSMAN, LEAD ISS FLIGHT DIRECTOR: There was a number of power and data connectors that the crew removed, after which they removed four bolts, one at each of the four corners of the truss.

AZUZ: After it was disconnected, astronauts planned to use the space station's robotic arm to move the section. It's scheduled to be reconnected at a different spot on Tuesday. If you're dreaming of this kind of work and you don't mind just a wee bit of travel, Shuttle Commander Pamela Melroy has a piece of advice for you.

PAMELA MELROY, SHUTTLE COMMANDER: The most important message to all boys and girls: That you should look into your own heart and follow your dreams.

AZUZ: And they just may take you into orbit. Carl Azuz, CNN Student News.


California Burning

LLOYD: Back on the ground now in California, where officials are investigating the devastating wildfires that swept across the state's southern region last week. Twenty-three different blazes scorched parts of the area. Fourteen of them are now fully contained, and several others are expected to be put out in the next couple of days. Authorities say that two of these fires might have been started intentionally. The Rosa fire has been contained. It is considered to be arson-related. But officials say the Santiago fire, which is still burning, was definitely started on purpose. It has already caused an estimated $6 million in damages to Orange County. Jeanne Meserve has more on the arson investigation.


JEANNE MESERVE, CNN REPORTER: Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger lived up to his tough guy movie image, delivering an unambiguous message to those who started at least two of the fires that have ravaged thousands upon thousands of acres.

ARNOLD SCHWARZENEGGER, GOVERNOR OF CALIFORNIA: I want everyone to understand that we will hunt down the people that are responsible for that, and we will arrest them and we will prosecute them to the full extent of the law.

MESERVE: At the points where the Santiago fire was set, FBI teams mapped the terrain for future court exhibits, if anyone is ever caught and charged. Officials say the investigation is making progress.

CHIEF CHIP PRATHER, ORANGE COUNTY FIRE AUTHORITY: Some very positive leads have been given to us, but they have got to track them down and make sure that they are legitimate.

MESERVE: Authorities have asked the public for information about a white Ford pickup truck seen in the canyon around the time the fire was started last Sunday. More than a thousand phone calls have come in to an arson tip line.

SHERIFF MIKE CAROMA, ORANGE COUNTY: A number of those phone calls have led us to individuals who we have now been able to have conversations with. We still have nobody that's a person of interest, and we clearly have nobody that's a suspect yet. But we're making progress.

MESERVE: The governor put it a different way.

SCHWARZENEGGER: If I were one of those people who started the fires, I would not sleep soundly right now, I tell you, because we are right behind you. As a matter of fact, if I would be you, turn yourself in.

MESERVE: More than 28,000 acres have already been scorched by the Santiago fire, and it is still big and dangerous. And if it weren't for some careless or malicious act, it never would have started. Jeanne Meserve, CNN, Santiago Canyon, California.


Finally No Termites

LLOYD: These wildfires have caused tens of millions of dollars in damage, and they've destroyed around 1,600 homes. This California couple actually saw their house in ruins on TV. And while they might have lost their possessions, they didn't lose their sense of humor. So, what could they possibly find funny about the situation? Well, they found a silver lining to losing their home: no house, no termites. When they came back home, they put up a sign with this pest-free proclamation, and they say it's helped pick up the spirits of some of their neighbors.

JIM HALL, RANCHO BERNARDO RESIDENT: When we came in with the sign, came in with the flag, people were applauding, they were running over. It just changed the attitude of most of the people here.

Spoken Word


SAN DIEGO CHARGERS FAN: It feels a little weird in a way, but I'm glad that we're back together. The air quality is not great, but I guess good enough for a game.

SAN DIEGO CHARGERS FAN: Cooking some carne and some pollo. Getting ready for the big game today.

SAN DIEGO CHARGERS FAN: We're not going to get burned out. We're gonna come back. We're survivors in San Diego. That's what it's all about.



LLOYD: Have you ever wanted to go behind the scenes at CNN Student News? Our blog gives you an exclusive look at what's going on when the cameras are off. You can find out how we approach a major news story or what we've got planned for future programs. Check it out and leave us your comments at!

Is this Legit?

RAMSAY: Is this legit? The U.S. Marine Corps is part of the Department of the Army. Nope. The Marines are in the Department of the Navy, even though the two are separate branches of the U.S. military.

Run to Honor

LLOYD: They might be separate military branches, but there's something that many Marines and sailors do share: an education at the U.S. Naval Academy. Future members of both services attend the school. And a dozen years after they graduated, alumni from the Academy's class of 1995 reunited this weekend to take part in the Marine Corps Marathon. As Fredricka Whitfield explains, it was more than a class reunion that brought the group back together.


FREDRICKA WHITFIELD, CNN REPORTER: To the untrained eye, this looks like just another foot race. But for a large group of Naval Academy graduates, it was a rare opportunity to pay tribute to fallen classmates.

JEFF WEBB, ORGANIZER: We've been to the funerals. We've been to the memorial ceremonies. We want to come together in a more celebratory environment. To just come together as a class to heal, to recognize them, to honor them.

WHITFIELD: The Naval Academy class of '95 has experienced more combat losses than any other Naval Academy class since the Vietnam era. Six members of that class have died in the line of duty. Among them, Major Megan McClung, a triathlete who herself ran multiple marathons, joined the Marines after graduating from the Naval Academy. She was killed in a roadside bomb attack in Iraq last December. McClung was 34 years old.

DR. MICHAEL MCCLUNG, MEGAN MCCLUNG'S FATHER: She really loved the Marine Corps. Of all the things that she loved, the Marine Corps was probably tops on the list.

WHITFIELD: All of those killed were accomplished in their own right. They were Marines, Navy Seals, pilots and flight officers. To honor their classmates, 135 alumni from the Naval Academy class of '95 ran in the marathon. In their memory, a small way to show their tribute.

BRAD ARTERY, RUNNER: You know, selflessness. They'll do anything for, you know, the country. So, this is the smallest, little thing I can do.

WHITFIELD: The Naval Academy class of '95 goes by the motto "Not for self, but for country," something they say their fallen comrades lived for and died for.




LLOYD: And that's where we say goodbye for today. But we'll see you tomorrow for more CNN Student News. Thanks for watching. I'm Monica Lloyd. E-mail to a friend E-mail to a friend

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