The Ticker National and International News

By  John Hanlon

MARRIAGE: A judge in Michigan struck down the state’s gay marriage ban on Friday, March 21. Within 24 hours, hundreds of marriage licenses had been issued to same-sex couples. Opponents of the judge’s decision point to a 2004 referendum in which nearly 60% of voters were in favor of a state constitutional amendment recognizing marriage as between only a man and a woman.

[Associated Press]

AGE: A Michiana resident, who was the oldest American-born man in the United States, has died at the age of 110. Ethan Shelton credits his longevity to chewing his food slowly and eating lots of greens. He was born in Alabama in 1903, but moved to Berrien County, Mich., in 1947 and had lived there ever since. At his death, Shelton was the 68th oldest person in the world.


CRIMEA: Following Crimea’s vote to secede from Ukraine and join Russia, Russian President Vladimir Putin signed documents on March 21 to formalize the decision. The United States and European Union refuse to recognize the annexation and have enacted a variety of sanctions on Russia.

[Reuters, NPR]

BRACKET: March Madness is underway and that means basketball, basketball and, you guessed it, more basketball. Out of 11 million brackets submitted to, none turned out to have the perfect win combinations. Billionaire Warren Buffet, along with Quicken Loans, got in on the madness, offering $1 billion to anyone who correctly predicted the fate of each team.


FALLING: “Lucky” might have a new definition after the March 17 rescue of a Burbank, Calif., boy. The three-year-old got the attention of passersby when he started throwing toys out a third-story apartment window. After dropping several items out, he climbed out the window himself. Fortunately, a couple in the process of moving a mattress box spring had stopped below the window, catching the child in their arms and setting him on the bed.

[My Burbank]