Traffic to slow as students return
Traffic on Oahu roads is expected to slow down Monday when about 220,000 students from public schools and the University of Hawaii return to class.
A three-week winter break will end for an estimated 180,000 public school students, while 20,000 UH undergraduate and graduate students will be heading back to the Manoa campus for the spring semester, officials said.
An additional 20,000 students from UH community colleges on Oahu and UH-West Oahu also go back to school Monday.
Public school teachers had their first work day of the year yesterday, said Education Department spokesman Greg Knudsen.
Students from most private schools have already resumed classes, according to the Hawaii Association of Independent Schools. Hawaii Pacific University begins its spring semester Jan. 22 with about 8,500 students.
Speaker to discuss hepatitis C
Jennifer Lee, who worked for many years at the St. Francis Liver Center, will discuss hepatitis C treatment and side effects at a free event at 6 p.m. Thursday in Suite 226 (the Life Foundation) at 677 Ala Moana Blvd.
The presentation is sponsored by the Hepatitis Prevention, Education, Treatment and Support Network of Hawaii, HepCats Support Group and Access Care Today.
Police, Fire, Courts
Driver dies in head-on collision
A 34-year-old man was killed and a woman seriously injured last night after a pickup truck and car collided head-on in Kahuku.
Emergency Services Department spokesman Bryan Cheplic said the male driver of the truck was pronounced dead at the scene at 7:21 p.m.
The woman, who was driving the car, was taken to the Queen's Medical Center in serious condition.
Police shut down Kamehameha Highway at Marconi Road while traffic investigators conducted an investigation of the scene.
Man's return brings tears of joy
A 67-year-old Pacific Palisades man whose disappearance was widely publicized was found on the mainland and returned home early yesterday.
Ronald B.D. Lee left his Aupaka Street home Dec. 5 and was not seen by his wife until yesterday. Linda Lee said she was glad her husband is alive and to be able to touch him again.
"I still couldn't believe it, but it's the best feeling of all," a tearful Linda Lee said yesterday at a news conference.
"I've learned one thing," she said. "If you have a loved one, touch them every day."
Lee thanked the public, the police and the media for their support and assistance in her husband's safe return.
Ronald Lee, whose only prior medical condition was partial hearing loss, returned in good health, she said.
Police Capt. Frank Fujii commended the media for keeping the story alive and said that police received a few phone calls from the mainland this week that enabled them to pin down his location.
Police and Linda Lee were reluctant to reveal details of where Ronald Lee was during his disappearance and how he got to the mainland.
Police did say that they do not know exactly how long he had been on the mainland, that he was on Oahu part of the time he was missing and that no criminal activity was connected to his disappearance.
Linda Lee said she appreciated the support from strangers. "Their hugs were the best thing that ever happened to me," she said.
Lee had been spotted by a family friend Dec. 12 at Pearlridge Center appearing unshaven and disoriented, and again spotted getting on a bus on South King Street.
Parents find baby unconscious in bed
A 1-month old Liliha infant died early yesterday morning after being found unresponsive in his parents' bed.
Police said the parents of the baby boy reported putting him to bed in their queen-size bed at 8 p.m. and later going to bed with the child between them.
The father awoke at 3:30 a.m. and discovered a portion of his pillow covering the infant's face and the boy unresponsive, police said.
The baby was taken by ambulance to Kuakini Medical Center, where he was pronounced dead.
The case has been classified as an unattended death.
5 people homeless after fire in Hauula
A fire destroyed 30 percent of a Hauula house yesterday, leaving five people homeless, said fire Capt. Frank Johnson.
Firefighters responded to the 1 p.m. alarm. The fire was brought under control in 10 minutes, Johnson said.
No one was home at the time, he said. The American Red Cross is assisting the family.
Fire investigators had yet to determine damage estimates or the cause of the fire yesterday.