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This Hour: Latest Kansas news, sports, business and entertainment

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New auto parts facility to open in KC, Mo. area

RIVERSIDE, Mo. (AP) - A subsidiary of a Canadian automotive supplier is building a new manufacturing plant in the Kansas City area.

Martinrea Riverside LLC held a groundbreaking ceremony Thursday for an automotive parts facility near Interstate 635 in the community of Riverside.

About 290 people are expected to be employed at the plant. They will make engine cradles and automotive assemblies for General Motors' Fairfax assembly plant in nearby Kansas City, Kansas.

The Missouri Department of Economic Development has offered the company more than $3.2 million of incentives through a tax credit and job training program.

The company is a subsidiary of Martinrea International Incorporated based in Ontario, Canada. Matrinrea employs more than 12,000 people at 38 facilities in eight countries. This is its first plant in Missouri.


Lightning hits tree, breaks windows at school

WICHITA, Kan. (AP) - Crews are cleaning up at a Wichita elementary school where a lightning strike left windows shattered in several classrooms.

KFDI-FM reports no children were injured following the strike around 9 a.m. Thursday at Woodman Elementary School. But second-grade teacher Julie Nelson says children were frightened as glass flew.

The lightning bolt hit a tree just outside the building. Principal Jana Epperly says branches and other debris broke windows in at least eight classrooms.

Students had just arrived for the day but were not yet in their classrooms when the lightning hit. Several second- and third-grade classes were moved to other rooms.

A student's grandfather was outside the school and was hit by flying bark. His injuries were described as minor.


2 men end federal lawsuit over Kansas voter ID law

TOPEKA, Kan. (AP) - Two elderly northeast Kansas men have dropped a federal lawsuit challenging a state law requiring voters to show photo identification at the polls.

Attorney Jim Lawing said Thursday that Arthur Spry and Charles Hamner asked to have the case dismissed because a trial wasn't set until next year and they found requests for personal information intrusive. The two men live in a retirement home in Overbrook.

U.S. District Judge Kathryn Vratil in Kansas City, Kansas granted their request Wednesday for a dismissal.

Spry and Hamner sued Secretary of State Kris Kobach after their votes in the November 2012 election weren't counted because they couldn't produce valid photo ID.

Kobach said Thursday it's unlikely the men would have prevailed because a photo ID requirement doesn't violate the state or U.S. constitutions.


Kansas man lost after WWII finally laid to rest

(Information in the following story is from: Leavenworth (Kan.) Times,

LEAVENWORTH, Kan. (AP) - A Topeka man whose plane went down during a post-World War Two operation has finally been laid to rest in his native state.

Hundreds of people lined the streets Wednesday in Leavenworth to honor 2nd Lieutenant Verne Gibb, who was a pilot during the war and afterward. His cargo plane was lost on a flight between Burma and India, likely because of bad weather. Five other people on the plane also were lost.

Despite several searches, the crash site was never found and the six men were declared dead. Gibb's remains were later found and were positively identified in October 2013.

The Leavenworth Times reports several of Gibb's family members attended Wednesday's service, including his daughter. None of them were available for comment after the service.


Donor pledges $25 million to University of Kansas

LAWRENCE, Kan. (AP) - The University of Kansas says one of its graduates has pledged a $25 million donation for scholarships and other purposes.

Officials announced the commitment Thursday in a news release that also said the donor has asked to remain anonymous.

The university says the donor appreciated the education he received as well as the scholarship support that helped him attend KU. He said he had been thinking for years about helping KU in his estate plans.

Eighty percent of the $25 million gift will benefit the KU Alumni Association's outreach programs. The rest will be divided equally between support for alumni scholarships and the Greater KU Fund, which supports priority needs.

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