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CAMP HILL, Ala. (AP) — Caring for abused and neglected girls is Candice Gulley’s life work, and that's what she was doing when she helped load vans from an Alabama children’s home for a trip to the beach. The kids walked on the sand, ate seafood and threw an early, dinosaur-themed fourth birthday party for her son, Ben, during a week on the coast.

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CAMP HILL, Ala. (AP) — Girls have often lived a life of abuse, abandonment or neglect by the time they land at a Christian youth home in rural Alabama, but an annual trip to the beach with the director and her family offered them a bright spot in otherwise tough times.

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NEW ORLEANS (AP) — A decade-old lawsuit over the awarding of waste disposal contracts following Hurricane Katrina has been settled, avoiding a Monday trial and ending the latest chapter in a story that added to corruption allegations against a convicted former New Orleans mayor and included a shakeup at a U.S. Attorney's Office.

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ATLANTA (AP) — Eight children in a van from a youth home for abused or neglected children were killed in a fiery multi-vehicle crash on a wet interstate that also killed a man and his baby in another vehicle, the most devastating blow from a tropical depression that claimed 13 lives in Alabama as it caused flash floods and spurred tornadoes that destroyed dozens of homes.

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NEW ORLEANS (AP) — High winds and heavy rains buffeted coastal Louisiana and Mississippi on Friday as a disorganized and unpredictable tropical weather system churned through the Gulf of Mexico, forcing cancellation of Juneteenth celebrations in Mississippi and Alabama and threatening Father's Day tourism.

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AVERY ISLAND, La. (AP) — As storms grow more violent and Louisiana loses more of its coast, the family that makes Tabasco Sauce is fighting erosion in the marshland that buffers its factory from hurricanes and floods.

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PHOENIX (AP) — Dangerous, record-busting heat spread across the U.S. Southwest on Tuesday and into parts of Utah, Montana and Wyoming as a dome of high pressure hovered over a large swath of the region, pushing temperatures into the triple digits this week and intensifying the risk for wildfires amid a long-running drought.

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MIAMI (AP) — The second named storm of this year’s hurricane season, Tropical Storm Bill, strengthened slightly off the U.S. eastern seaboard on Tuesday, but not for long. It was expected to dissipate on Wednesday over colder water as it approaches the coast of Nova Scotia.

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CAMERON, La. (AP) — Scores of people in coastal Louisiana are still living in campers on dirt mounds or next to cement slabs where their houses once stood. Unresolved insurance claims and a shortage of supply and labor are stymieing building efforts. And weather forecasters are warning of more possible devastation to come.

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SAN JUAN, Puerto Rico (AP) — A private company on Tuesday took over the transmission and distribution operations of Puerto Rico’s power authority, which has struggled with blackouts and bankruptcy, corruption and mismanagement.

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