Charlotte civil rights lawyer Julius Chambers has died at age 76. Chambers' law firm said he died Friday after months of declining health. In 1964, Chambers opened a law practice that became the state's first integrated law firm. He and his partners won cases that shaped civil rights law, including the Swann versus Charlotte-Mecklenburg Board of Education case on school busing. Chambers argued eight cases before the US Supreme Court, winning all. He also served as chancellor of his alma mater, North Carolina Central University, from 1993 to 2001.
MORE GUNS SEIZED FROM AIR TRAVELERS
The Transportation Security Administration says more travelers are trying to board airliners with weapons this year in North Carolina. More weapons than ever have been seized this year at airport security checkpoints in Charlotte and Raleigh. The Raleigh News & Observer reports that 18 weapons were seized so far this year at Charlotte Douglas International Airport, up from 16 in all of 2012 and 15 in 2011. At Raleigh Durham, passengers have given up 16 guns at TSA checkpoints so far in 2013, including a loaded 45 caliber pistol seized from an Army soldier last Monday. Only 11 guns were seized in all of 2011 and 2012.
REPAIRS BEGIN ON BLUE RIDGE PARKWAY
A 20-mile stretch of the scenic Blue Ridge Parkway remains closed this weekend north of Asheville, after a crack was discovered July 12. But help is on the way. Repairs have begun on the 300-foot crack near milepost 374 near the Tanbark Ridge Tunnel. The Asheville Citizen-Times reports that the crack is causing the northbound side of the parkway to slide away. A companion crack along the shoulder on the road's slope side was more than 100 feet long and a foot wide in places. Federal officials say the slope is stable enough to make a temporary repair. Workers will install a temporary bypass while they do the repairs. Officials hope to have the road open again by Labor Day weekend.
20,000 AT PANTHERS' FAN FEST
The summer is hot, but NFL football is on the way. About 20,000 people came out to Bank of America Stadium Saturday for the Carolina Panthers Fan Fest. Coach Ron Rivera said afterward that his team has been dragging in the summer heat as it practiced over the past week. But Saturday’s crowd help bring some energy to the practice. The pre-season begins Friday night when the Panthers host the Chicago Bears here in Charlotte. The regular season starts September 8th at home against the Seattle Seahawks.