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Hundreds gather in Modesto to pray for ISIS hostages

Hundreds gather in Modesto to pray for ISIS hostages

A gathering of hundreds was held at a Modesto church Friday evening to to pray for the safe return of Assyrian Christians taken hostage this week by Islamic State militants in northeast Syria. Among the more than 250 hostages taken from Assyrian villages in northeast Syria is former Modesto resident Hanno Amo. The vigil was held at St. Zaia Cathedral on Mable Avenue. The cathedral is a parish of the Assyrian Church of the East, Diocese of California. Stanislaus County has one of the United States’ largest Assyrian communities, estimated at about 20,000.

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Our View: There’s still not enough water to go around

It was more terrible news for West Side farmers Friday as the federal Central Valley Project told customers there would be a second straight year of “zero allocations.” That means they’ll get virtually no water. That, in turn, will mean a renewed emphasis on conservation throughout the state.

Blogs & Columns

Ken Carlson

Employer announces final layoffs and timing for closing AMR office in Salida

Employees at the American Medical Response billing center in Salida will continue working on borrowed time, but their employer is firm about closing the office in mid-August, according to recent letters to Stanislaus County’s Board of Supervisors. Centrex Revenue Solutions notified the county that another 66 employees will lose their jobs when the operation comes to an end in August. They include medical records employees, billing assistants, quality assurance specialists, a mail room clerk and supervisors who were not included in previous layoff notices.

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