SEMINOLE HEIGHTS, Fla., April 27 (UPI) -- A Florida woman got some good news when she learned a dark spot on her lung was a seed that had been lodged there for almost 30 years.
Blanca Riveron, 62, of Seminole Heights, was convinced she had lung cancer, WTSP-TV in St. Petersburg reported.
Riveron said her daughter Melody, who lives in Cuba, reminded her on the telephone she inhaled a seed from a fruit called rispero in 1984. Riveron said she could not believe the seed would still be there after all that time.
But she discovered the truth while sitting in a traffic jam when she had a bad coughing fit and the rispero seed came out. The seed also explains why she has suffered from a bad cough for decades that doctors diagnosed as asthma or pneumonia.
Riveron's breathing has improved remarkably.
"She's even been able to blow up a balloon for my son. She had never been able to do that," another daughter, Dayana Noda, said.
Congress hopeful's son admits tire slash
KINGSTON, Tenn., April 27 (UPI) -- Police in Tennessee charged Republican congressional hopeful Scottie Mayfield's son for cutting a car tire belonging to the incumbent's campaign manager.
Kingston Assistant Police Chief Gary Nelson said Michael Mayfield, 33, is charged with vandalism under $500 for damaging a tire on the 2005 Audi belonging to Tyler Threadgill, campaign manager for U.S. Rep. Chuck Fleischman, the Chattanooga Times Free Press reported Friday.
Scottie Mayfield is challenging Fleischmann in the Republican primary for the state's 3rd Congressional District.
Nelson said Michael Mayfield confessed to cutting Threadgill's left rear tire stem Tuesday morning at the Roane County Courthouse.
"This kind of activity has no place in campaigns and we are regretful that it happened," Scottie Mayfield said in a statement Friday.
"Michael will be making his own apology to Mr. Threadgill and has made several attempts to reach him by phone today," Mayfield said. "Michael is prepared to make full restitution for the damage that was done to Mr. Threadgill's tire."
Immigrants know more about U.S. government
CINCINNATI, April 27 (UPI) -- U.S. adults are far less informed about their government than immigrants who take the naturalization test, a group of researchers said Friday.
The Center for the American Dream at Xavier University in Cincinnati conducted a survey that was part poll and part pop quiz. While 97.5 percent of would-be citizens pass the civics portion of the test, many citizens were unable to answer the most basic questions about the Constitution and government.
"We certainly don't expect everyone to know all the answers," said Michael Ford, the center's founding director. "For example, does it matter if we don't know how many amendments there are? No. But almost 60 percent don't even know what an amendment is."
The center found that college graduates do worse than immigrants with 82 percent getting the equivalent of a pass. Among those who graduated from high school or did not finish, the pass rate was only 44 percent.
In spite of the dismal showing, respondents said they believe U.S. citizens should have a knowledge of government. More than three-quarters, 77 percent, said adults should be able to pass the civics test and 60 percent said it should be a requirement for high school graduation.
Fairbank, Maslin, Maullin, Metz and Associates surveyed 1,023 native-born adults by telephone from Feb. 29 to March 11. The margin of error is 3.1 percentage points.
Man dies after bullet in head for 94 years
TURLOCK, Calif., April 27 (UPI) -- A California man who lived for 94 years and six months with a bullet in his head has died at the age of 103.
William Lawlis Pace, who was certified as a Guinness World Record holder in 2006 when he had lived for 89 years with the bullet in his head, died Monday at the Covenant Village retirement home in Turlock, The Modesto Bee reported Friday.
Pace said in 2006 the bullet entered his skull when he was accidentally shot by his brother, Marvin, in October 1917. He said doctors decided surgery would be too risky and left the bullet in place.
Guinness said Pace, who is survived by two sons, had a final record of 94 years and six months with the bullet in his head.
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