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New Jersey girl, 6, remembered as 'bubbly' with 'haunting beauty' following tragic badminton accident: family

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The father of a 6-year-old New Jersey girl who died from head trauma after a freak accident involving a badminton racket on the final day of a family vacation recalled his daughter’s “bubbly” personality and the afternoon their family changed forever.

Jesse Morgan, whose 6-year-old daughter Lucy unexpectedly died after playing with her siblings, shared with Fox News Digital memories about his daughter.

“Her personality was very bubbly and also reserved at times,” he said. “Once you got to know her, she was very, very outspoken and a lot of fun. She was a tough kid and played soccer really hard.”

NEW JERSEY GIRL, 6, DIES IN TRAGIC BADMINTON ACCIDENT 4 WEEKS AFTER ASKING ‘HOW TO BE WITH GOD AND BE SAVED’

Lucy Morgan, 6, during the family’s vacation in Maine. (Jesse Morgan via New Creation Living Blog)

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Jesse recalled looking at pictures of Lucy with his daughter and wife, Bethany.

“My wife just made the comment that her beauty is haunting. Some of those pictures are just, she’s just so gorgeous, and her personality is so incredible,” he said.

Jesse recalled that Lucy was the “main cuddler” of their family of six.

“I just remember her coming up with her bedhead [hair] and just wanting to sit with you for a long time. Not restless, just wants to lie with you and snuggle up.”

Lucy with her three siblings while in vacation in Maine

Lucy with her three siblings while on vacation in Maine. Lucy told her parents the day of the accident it was the “best week of her life.” (Jesse Morgan via New Creation Living Blog)

Lucy Morgan and her family

Lucy with her two brothers and her father while on vacation in Limerick, Maine. Lucy was taken by medical helicopter to a nearby pediatric hospital before being transferred to a hospital in Portland, Maine. (Jesse Morgan via New Creation Living Blog)

Jesse, a pastor at Green Pond Bible Chapel in Rockaway, New Jersey, told Fox News Digital the family’s vacation was part of his sabbatical.

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“We were on our first week [of sabbatical] and it was, according to her, the best week of her life,” he said. “We did so many fun things.”

Photos shared by the family showed Lucy and her three siblings, Silas, Shiloh and Atticus, fishing and kayaking in Limerick, Maine, before tragedy struck.

“It was, according to her, the best week of her life.” 

Lucy and her mother, Bethany, and sister.

Lucy and her mother, Bethany, and sister. Jesse Morgan said he and his wife were reading and relaxing when the badminton accident happened. (Jesse Morgan via New Creation Living Blog)

The family’s idyllic vacation came to a sudden halt May 30, after the family enjoyed a leisurely lunch.

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Jesse said he and his wife were reading and resting in the backyard, and the children were playing badminton, when their son came to them “very concerned.”

“We went out, and we saw what had happened, which was just indescribable terror going from so quiet, so calm to an incredibly traumatic experience,” Jesse said.

Lucy Morgan and her mother in a hospital bed sleeping

Four days later, Lucy died from her injuries, the family said. (Jesse Morgan via New Creation Living Blog)

Lucy was unexpectedly struck when the shaft of the racket, which was being used by her 10-year-old brother, broke apart and flew into her skull.

“Due to a freak accident with a racquet that broke on a downward swing, a sharp piece had entered Lucy’s skull while she was sitting on the sideline and caused catastrophic injury,” Jesse explained in a series of blog posts on his blog, New Creation Living. “She was still breathing but unresponsive as I held her with Bethany crying out to God.”

AMERICAN MISSIONARIES KILLED BY HAITIAN GANG ‘GAVE EVERYTHING’ FOR PEOPLE THERE: FAMILY

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Lucy was taken to a local hospital before being moved to a hospital in Portland, Maine.

Lucy's prayer journal

Lucy had a prayer journal that she wrote and drew in. (Jesse Morgan via New Creation Living Blog)

Four days after the accident, Lucy succumbed to her injury.

“After significant thorough testing and even more repeated tests to be certain, brain death was declared at 1:32 a.m. on June 5, and her heart stopped beating around 4 a.m.,” Jesse wrote. 

“Lucy was with Jesus.”

The parents held onto the hope that Lucy “believed in Jesus’ death and resurrection.”

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“Lucy was with Jesus.”

SOUTH CAROLINA WOMAN’S HAND AMPUTATED AFTER BURNING IT IN FREAK ACCIDENT WITH HAIR DRYER

“Four weeks ago she asked Bethany how to be with God and be saved,” Jesse wrote. “Bethany explained it to her and offered to pray with her, but ‘Miss Independent’ wanted to do it herself. She went to her room and prayed to God to forgive her and that she believed in Jesus’ death and resurrection.”

“What a gift,” he said.

Lucy's prayer journal

Lucy Morgan wrote in her prayer journal that “God loves me.” (Jesse Morgan via New Creation Living Blog)

Picture in Lucy's prayer journal

Lucy’s prayer journal also contained drawings of the family and the Bible, her father said. (Jesse Morgan via New Creation Living Blog)

Jesse wrote that he and his wife were comforted after finding her prayer journal, saying it felt “as if God was writing with her.”

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“How a 6-year-old journals like this is beyond me. After that, she seemed to get writer’s block and just draw beautiful pictures of Bible stories and hearts.”



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New Hampshire

New Hampshire remains New England's lone holdout against legalizing recreational marijuana

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New Hampshire remains New England's lone holdout against legalizing recreational marijuana


CONCORD, N.H. — Legislation to legalize recreational marijuana in New Hampshire died on the House floor Thursday after advancing further than ever in New England’s only holdout state.

The House has passed multiple legalization bills over the years only to have them blocked in the Senate. This year, both chambers passed legislation, and the Senate approved a compromise worked out by negotiators from both chambers. But the House declined to go along, instead voting 178-173 to table it and let it die as the session ended.

The House-passed version had included a 10% tax, while the final version kept the 15% favored by the Senate, as well as the state-run franchise model the Senate wanted and the House strongly opposed.

Rep. Jared Sullivan, a Democrat from Bethlehem, said the compromise did little to change what he called an “ugly” Senate bill. He described it as “the most intrusive big-government marijuana program proposed anywhere in the country, one that ignores free market principles, will stifle innovation in an emerging industry and tie future generations of Granite Staters to an inferior model indefinitely.”

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Sullivan also pushed back against the suggestion that the law could have been tweaked next year to better reflect the House’s stance.

“Does anyone in here actually believe that we will be able to reel in a newly empowered government bureaucracy after they’ve spent millions of dollars?” he said. “Does anyone honestly believe it will be easy to pull back power from an unelected agency once they have it?”

Supporters had urged colleagues to pass the bill, suggesting that New Hampshire becoming the 25th state to legalize marijuana could be a tipping point for the federal government. Supporters also pointed to polls showing more than 70% of the state’s residents believe it should be legal.

“This bill does address what the people of our state want,” said Sen. Shannon Chandley, a Democrat from Amherst. “And besides being the will of the majority, it allows us to do what is really necessary, and that is to regulate.”

Devon Chaffee, executive director of the ACLU of New Hampshire, said lawmakers appear content in ignoring the will of their constituents and to continuing to needlessly ensnare people, including many Black residents, in the criminal justice system.

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“Marijuana legalization is not just a political squabble about the economic benefits,” she said in a statement. “The war on marijuana has real-life impacts.”

Republican Gov. Chris Sununu, a past opponent of such bills, had signaled more openness to the idea but stopped short of saying he would sign the latest measure.



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New Jersey

NJ family nearly crushed when massive ice chunk seemingly falls from plane, tears through home

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NJ family nearly crushed when massive ice chunk seemingly falls from plane, tears through home


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A New Jersey family was nearly crushed when a massive chunk of ice seemingly fell off a plane and crashed through the roof of their suburban home on Wednesday.

The frightening scene happened around 9:30 p.m. in Paterson, NJ when the Gomez family was seated at their backyard table less than 12 feet away from the impact zone, according to News 12 New Jersey.

The Gomez family was seated at their backyard table less than 12 feet away from the impact zone. News12 New Jersey

“Out of nowhere, you just hear a hollow sound coming down, and honestly, we didn’t think anything of it, and then you just hear a big DOOOOSH!” Sabrina Gomez told the outlet.

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Security footage from the backyard shows the family jumping out of their seats when they heard the chunk of ice plummet down to earth.

“It was big stones…I guess it was a big square. When it came down it smashed everything,” Paul Gomez said.

The Gomez’s home sits directly underneath several flight paths, according to the outlet.

“When we look up, it’s basically like a plane flying by,” said Sabrina Gomez.

The family then rushed to the front of their house, where they took a video of pieces of ice spread out all over the driveway.

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The frightening scene happened around 9:30 p.m. in Paterson, NJ. News12 New Jersey

“Honestly, it was a little terrifying, but thank God it didn’t hit anybody, and it hit the floor. It hit the roof thank God,” Sabrina Gomez shared.

The damage from the block of ice was so severe that they may need an entirely new roof.

Nobody was harmed when the ice came hurdling down onto their home.

The family filed a claim with the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) to investigate the ice they believed fell from a plane passing overhead.

The family then rushed to the front of their house, where they took a video of pieces of ice spread out all over the driveway. News12 New Jersey
The Gomez’s home sits directly underneath several flight paths. News12 New Jersey

The chilling incident comes nearly a year after a chunk of ice weighing between 15 and 20 pounds struck a Massachusetts home, according to The Associated Press.

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Jeff Ilg and his wife, Amelia Rainville, were sitting in their home in Shirley when the block of ice came crashing through their roof in August 2023.

“We heard an explosion, basically,” Ilg said. “The loudest pop, bang I’ve ever heard.”

Ilgs bolted upstairs to check on their children, who somehow stayed asleep through the noise.

Jeff Ilg shows damage to his home in Shirley, Mass., where a chunk of ice landed on the roof on Aug. 13, 2023. AP

He then ran outside, seeing a giant block of ice on his back step and debris scattered around the backyard and roof.

Ilg grabbed a flashlight and began searching for damage but found no damage until he spotted the hole in the roof.

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He then went up to his attic where he found another chuck of the ice.

Jeff Ilg said he and his wife, Amelia Rainville, suspect the ice fell off an airplane traveling to Boston Logan International Airport. AP

“Sure enough, it was in there, and it was big,” Ilg told the outlet, saying the impact on the outside of their home was about 18 inches to 2 feet in size.

The couple assumed it fell from an airplane traveling to Boston Logan International Airport — which is about 47 miles away from their home.

Airplanes can ice up due to supercooled water, an unstable liquid that freezes when it hits an aircraft in the sky, according to the FAA.

“This can happen when an aircraft flies near the top of a cold air mass beneath a layer of warm air, such as during freezing rain ahead of a warm front in winter. As the aircraft flies through the warm, moist air that’s been sucked up into the cold, it hits the supercooled water in liquid form, which then freezes on the leading edges of the plane.”

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with Post wires



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Pennsylvania

Elections 101: Everything you need to know about election recounts in Pennsylvania

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Elections 101: Everything you need to know about election recounts in Pennsylvania


How does Pennsylvania recount votes?

Counties must submit their unofficial results to the Pennsylvania Department of State by the first Tuesday following the election, which is Nov. 12 this year. If unofficial results show the margin lies within half a percent for a statewide race like those for president or U.S. Senate, the secretary of the commonwealth will order a recount by Nov. 14, according to a Department of State directive. A losing candidate has until Nov. 13 to request a recount not take place.

Counties will then recount all ballots either by hand or using different tabulation machines than the election was initially conducted with.

The recount must begin by the third Wednesday following the election, which this fall will be Nov. 20, and results must be submitted to the secretary by the following Wednesday, Nov. 27.

In the case of precinct-level recount petitions, requesters must file their petition with the local Court of Common Pleas. A judge will then determine if it meets the legal requirements to take place.

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Can a recount change election results?

Recounts that change the outcome of a race are extremely rare, according to a study of statewide recounts by Fair Vote, a nonprofit focused on ranked-choice voting.

The group analyzed nearly 7,000 statewide races between 2000 and 2023, and found only 36 recounts in that time, only three of which resulted in a change of outcome.

“All three reversals occurred when the initial margin was less than 0.06% of all votes cast for the top two candidates,” according to the report.

According to the Pennsylvania Department of State, there have been seven statewide recounts since the 0.5% rule went into effect in 2004, and none of them changed the outcome of the race.

The most recent was in the 2022 Republican primary for U.S. Senate.

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In that race, Mehmet Oz beat Dave McCormick by 902 votes — a margin of 0.07% — triggering the recount. McCormick conceded before the recount was complete, but the count ultimately shifted the margin by only 49 votes, in Oz’s favor.

Voter-initiated precinct-level recounts are even less likely to affect the outcome of a race than those ordered by the secretary.

In 2022, when supporters of Republican gubernatorial candidate Doug Mastriano requested recounts around the state, they did not substantially shift the margin in areas where the requests were granted.

Recounts in four Westmoreland County precincts resulted in only a three-vote difference from the original tally. Columbia County also recounted votes in some precincts, and results changed by only one or two votes, officials said at the time.

Could there be a recount this year?

Whether there is an automatic recount of a statewide race this year depends on the margins of victory this November. Current polling indicates the presidential race may be close in Pennsylvania.

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If the margin is within half a percent, Secretary of the Commonwealth Al Schmidt must order a recount by Nov. 14, according to a calendar of this year’s election. Counties would need to submit the results of that recount to the secretary by Nov. 27.

It’s likely at least some voters will request precinct-level recounts, which could negatively affect the state’s certification process. This year, there is a hard deadline for Pennsylvania to provide its certified slate of presidential electors to Congress.

If precinct-level recount petitions delay certification as they did in 2022, the state could run up against that deadline and the courts may be forced to intervene.



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