- Mayor Byron W. Brown on Monday fired his onetime political ally, Karla L. Thomas, after a report concluded Brown was justified in removing the human resources commissioner from her job, News Staff Reporter Brian Meyer reports.
- A Niagara Falls couple pleaded guilty Monday to second-degree manslaughter in the death last year of their 22-month-old daughter, News Niagara Reporter Thomas J. Prohaska reports.
- The U.S. Department of Transportation has vowed to "pursue enforcement action" against ticket sellers who fail to clearly identify which airline is flying each flight when customers use the Web to buy plane tickets, reports Jerry Zremski, of the News Washington Bureau.
The cold just keeps coming. According to the National Weather Service it is 14 degrees this morning, but feels like 2 degrees. Temperatures will range throughout the day from a high of 24 to a low of 12 with mostly clear skies.
Here are some of the latest headlines:
-Authorities on Sunday charged a 22-year-old loner with attempting to assassinate Rep. Gabrielle Giffords and killing others at a political event north of Tuscon, Ariz.
-News Washington Bureau Chief Jerry Zremski reports that although Democratic power may be waning across the Capitol, New York's two Democratic senators have never looked stronger.
-Three Kings Day, a Hispanic celebration that has been a 27-year local tradition, is losing the leadership that makes it happen each year.
-This weekend marked the opening of tobogganing season at Chesnut Ridge in Orchard Park. Check out this video taken at the chutes on Sunday:
The Bills are keeping their faith in quarterback Ryan Fitzpatrick.
The first installment of "Buffalo's Millionaire's Row," this month's focus of Forest Lawn's Sunday In The Cemetery Concert and Lecture Series, has sold out.
The event, with music provided by the Colored Musicians Club, will showcase the mansions of Delaware Avenue and the connection of some of their residents to Forest Lawn Cemetery.
If you missed out on tickets for today's lecture, you can catch Buffalo's Millionares' Row when it runs again on Jan. 23. Here's a full calendar of Forest Lawn events.
Sundays In The Cemetery take place at 2 p.m. on the second Sunday of each month from October until April in the cemetery's chapel at 1411 Delaware Avenue. Reservations are required. Tickets are $15 per person or $90 for a season pass and can be purchased by calling the Forest Lawn office at (716) 885-1600.
-The region's long-term jobless cling to the hope they'll be able to find work, but while the economy showed signs of improving last year, a U.S. Labor Department report released Friday shows companies aren't hiring enough people to make much of a dent in the unemployed population.
-The final group of 914th airmen spent precious moments with families prior to their deployment Saturday to southwest Asia. Here's a video captured as the group gathered in a hangar Saturday for the type of community send-off that has become common at the Niagara Falls Air Reserve Station:
-In sports, the Sabres finished off their road trip with an OT win over Phoenix to improve to 18-18-5.
Les Friedman of the Mikey's Way Foundation gives a high-tech gift to young patient this morning.
LANCASTER -- Christmas was two weeks ago but don't tell that to Les Friedman.
The president and CEO of Mikey's Way Foundation spent the morning giving out high-tech gifts to kids with life threatening diseases. It's just one of 14 similar events planned by the foundation for 2011.
"I know I'm a heavier set guy but I feel like Santa Claus all year long," he said. "It's just a tremendous feeling."
Eleven kids were given iPods, netbook computers and other Internet-ready gadgets today to help keep them connected, entertained and educated during long hospital stays.
The children were called up individually and Friedman helped them choose a gift from a stocked cart.
When they ran out of netbooks, someone from Mikey's Way drove to a Best Buy down the street to buy one for a boy who asked for one.
"The beauty of Mikey's Way is it's really that simple," Friedman said. "The child needs this to have his mind occupied while he's going through chemotherapy and feeling the side effects of the treatment. You don't hesitate."
Today's gift-giving in a theater at the Regal Cinemas on Transit Road marked the first Mikey's Way - Make-A-Wish Day. Mikey's Way -- which was founded by Friedman's late son -- usually gives its gifts out in local pediatric hospitals.
"They'll give out these gifts to these kids who aren't expecting anything and are in the middle of a treatment and are waiting the days out watching daytime TV, which is horrendous," said Ryan Erwin, board chairman of Make-A-Wish Foundation of WNY.
Tracy Cody's 14-year-old son, Chris, received a laptop today. He's undergoing treatment at Roswell Park Cancer Institute for a rare cancer.
"Knowing Christopher he'll play games," Cody said while her son was inside the theater watching a 3D showing of "How to Train Your Dragon." "He loves his online games -- Lord of the Rings right now."
A member of Team Russia displays his gold medal for cameras this morning at Buffalo Niagara International Airport.
10:42 a.m.: Watch Team Russia's departure from Buffalo in this video:
8:30 a.m.: Buffalo's extended guests have checked in and passed through security. Barring any complications at the gate, the gold medal winners should soon be on their way home to Moscow via New York City and Atlanta. Asked how the check-in process went today, a Delta Airlines official said, "Much better than yesterday." She said the players were polite and organized. She estimated the team is carrying 5,000 pounds of luggage.
Delta Airlines officials estimated the team of 30 players and coaches is carrying 5,000 pounds of luggage.
CHEEKTOWAGA -- Team Russia is again attempting to leave Buffalo this morning after its gold medal victory in the World Junior Championship.
The team left the Days Hotel on Genesee Street this morning around 7 a.m. with an NFTA police escort and is now gathered in the departures area of the Buffalo Niagara International Airport signing autographs and mugging for the cameras.
Their luggage -- including many hockey gear bags -- is strewn about the floor here as the team of 30 players and coaches prepares to leave on two separate flights.
The team was turned away Thursday from its Delta Airlines flight after airline officials claimed players were "unruly." There have also been allegations that the team was drinking heavily Wednesday night following its victory. But the team has denied the allegations.
Team media officer Mikhail Zislis thanked his hosts for their hospitality.
Asked if he had any parting words for his American hosts, Zislis told BuffaloNews.com Live, "Just support hockey as best you can."
The skies will remain mostly cloudy most of today in the Buffalo area, where the high will near 28, according to the National Weather Service. Lake-effect snow in Chautauqua and Cattaraugus counties will continue to weaken throughout the morning. The National Weather Service warns that untreated roads in the Southern Tier will continue to be slippery.
Here's a look at a few of the latest headlines:
- Gov. Andrew M. Cuomo gives his first State of the State address at 1:30 p.m. today in Albany. His chief themes are expected to be solving the state's fiscal problems and changing the ways of Albany, writes Tom Precious of the News Albany Bureau.
- The IIHF World Junior Championship wraps up today with the bronze and gold medal games. The United States will take on Sweden at 3:30 p.m., and Canada will face Russia in the gold medal matchup at 7:30 p.m. Both games will be shown on NHL Network. Catch the latest on The News' World Juniors page.
- Home sales in Western New York tumbled in November, but prices rose, reports News Business Reporter Jonathan D. Epstein reports.