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OSLO, MN (WDAZ-TV) -- An East Grand Forks woman is about to go on the trip of a lifetime. She's off to Guatemala to meet her birth mother -- after being separated as a toddler. WDAZ's Kenneth Chase tells us her warning for any potential adoptive parents A caregiver-- "We're going to take your medicine now ok?" with a special story. Dina Dementi was born in Guatemala. "I didn't grow up bitter. I became the person I am. Loving and caring of other people," Dina Dementi, Care Giver.
GRAND FORKS—A Grand Forks woman is grieving the loss of her dog after a neighbor found it dead in a trash can. She's demanding answers after seeing the condition her dog was left in. In an alley behind Jeannie Northburg's home is where a neighbor found 13-year-old Peanut. "It was in back here. In this actually this trash bin, he was curled up and his collar was missing," said Jeannie Northburg, Dog Owner, "There was no signs of maybe fighting with a dog or anything. He was just all curled up." The death has devastated Jeannie Northburg's family.
WALSH COUNTY—As dry conditions persist throughout the region one county is dealing with a spike in the number of grass fires this year. Walsh County has already had about a dozen fires in the last few weeks, about as many as the area usually sees each year. The area around Grafton, North Dakota has not had much rain causing the grass to dry out. The emergency manager says they have about two dozen volunteer fire fighters ready to respond within minutes, and on Tuesday their guard is up as they anticipate more fires are imminent.
GRAND FORKS—With sidewalk art and prayers children in Grand Forks are mourning the loss of their classmates. Kids at Lewis and Clark Elementary used chalk in front of their school to write messages to Aidan and Arianna Talmage, two of the three victims. Many of the drawings were from the fifth graders at the school. Counselors were on-hand at all of the schools in the district for children to talk to on Friday. It's all in an effort to comfort kids who may not know how to deal with sudden losses.
GRAFTON, ND -- A Grafton family struggling to keep their child healthy and in school. WDAZ's Kenneth Chase tells us why one parent says bullies are taking teasing too far.
THIEF RIVER FALLS—A small town police department is calling in some extra help to fight opioids in the community. Thief River Falls PD recently approved an agreement with the Bureau of Criminal Apprehension in Minnesota. The anti-heroin task force will allow the department to use BCA resources to solve crimes involving drugs like fentanyl and heroin. Police say they've seen a surge of drugs resulting in a handful of deaths.
POLK COUNTY—In Polk County, a local family is grieving after someone mysteriously killed their dog and left bullet holes in cars nearby. Molly Bye's dogs were outside Thursday night when she says someone shot and killed her labrador retriever named Shiloh. The family found the dog's body Friday morning. Nearby their neighbors found bullet holes in their cars and windshields. Bye says she's also concerned the shootings could've ended with more injuries or worse.
GRAND FORKS—Construction companies search for helping hands ahead of summer as they expect thousands of additional jobs to open up across the region. Representatives from RJ Zavoral and Sons say they expect to see a boom in construction projects. The HR manager says more projects require more crew members to drive trucks and do other construction work. The company joined 70 other employers at the Alerus Center on Thursday including some other construction companies searching for their next new hire at a job fair.
GRAND FORKS—A warning for military families asking you to watch what you say about a service members deployments. The Grand Forks Air Base posted this video on Facebook to remind friends and family be careful not to reveal any specific information about a deployment. It's all part of the military's operational security plans often called OPSEC. Department of Defense documents say you should not post details about departure or arrival dates on Facebook. They say that information can be easily accessed even if your account is private.
GRAND FORKS—The number of calls to 911 in Grand Forks last year rose by about 6,000, as more people reach out for help. That's a seven and a half percent growth. Staff at the Public Safety Answering Point say they received a whopping 87,000 calls altogether last year. Many of the calls were for domestic violence situations and concerned families asking police to check on a relative. Several others were for people considering suicide. Dispatchers say over the last decade the number of calls has risen each year.