John Lorinc | WABE 90.1 FM

John Lorinc

Host, Weekend Edition, Producer and Reporter

One week after his 21st birthday, John Lorinc entered the world of radio at WBHV in State College, Pennsylvania.

A few months after graduating from Penn State University’s College of Communications, Lorinc returned to his hometown of Pittsburgh.

That’s the city known for its three rivers and residents who put french fries in their salads.

While in Pittsburgh, John worked at WRRK, doing morning news and traffic for the “Quinn in the Morning Show.”

John also had a classic rock shift at WRRK on Saturday nights, which is why he never needs to ever hear songs like “Hotel California” and “Stairway to Heaven” ever again.

Lorinc also wrote record reviews and interviews with musicians for the now-defunct Rock N Roll Reporter, in McKees Rocks, Pennsylvania.

In 2000, Lorinc moved to Atlanta and worked at CNNRadio for a decade as an anchor/reporter.  He also produced a weekly music feature called “Measure to Measure.”  Among the musicians who were on the show included: Ronnie Wood of the Rolling Stones, Ray Manzarek of the Doors, Jon Bon Jovi, Bonnie Raitt, Big Boi of Outkast, Smokey Robinson, Trace Adkins and Miranda Lambert.

Other career highlights include winning a GABBY Award for a WUGA story on Athens-based singer/songwriter John Keane and writing an excerpt in Larry Kane’s New York Times’ best-selling biography "Lennon Revealed."

Lorinc has been with WABE since 2012.

Alison Guillory / WABE

The Georgia Department of Transportation is returning roads to the way they were before the March 30  Interstate 85 bridge collapse.

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GDOT is closing the Buford Spring Connector southbound at I-85 tonight. That will allow crews to return the on-ramp to I-85 South back to one lane.

Thursday night, GDOT closed a few roads as parts of Buford Highway, Sidney Marcus and Piedmont Circle were returned to their usual configurations.  

David Goldman / Associated Press

Weather permitting, the Interstate 85 bridge could reopen this weekend, nearly a month-and-a-half after it collapsed from a fire. However, that doesn't mean it will be smooth sailing throughout the area near that site.

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The Georgia Department of Transportation is resurfacing roads from the Brookwood Split to Clairmont Road.

Some of that work was started during the bridge construction.

David Goldman / Associated Press

There is a light at the end of the tunnel ... regarding the I-85 bridge.

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Gov. Nathan Deal made it official Wednesday: The part of the interstate that  collapsed in a fire in March will reopen Monday, at the latest.

That's about a month ahead of schedule.

Atlanta resident David Rucker says he's not surprised state and local officials made sure fixing the roadway was done as quick as possible.

John Lorinc / WABE

On June 1, 1967, the Beatles released their eighth album: "Sgt. Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band."  

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It was an immediate hit, topping the U.S. charts for 15 weeks and 27 weeks in the U.K.

One person who got a copy of "Sgt. Pepper" during the legendary "Summer of Love" was WABE's "Morning Edition" host emeritus Steve Goss.

He was a teenager in Rhode Island at the time and his girlfriend got him a copy.

Russ Bynum / Associated Press

The major wildfire burning along the Georgia-Florida border isn't slowing down, and the weather is helping to fan the flames.  

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The blaze in the Okefenokee Swamp started last month and has scorched more than 210 square miles of swampland.

Now, the fire has stretched across the marsh and is inching toward nearby neighborhoods.

Tasnim Shamma / WABE

The cost of filling up your car with gas is going down in Metro Atlanta.

That trend is expected to continue as we head toward the summer driving season.

Right now, AAA reports gas prices here have been falling about half-a-cent to one-cent per day.

"So if that trend continues, we're likely to be about $2 a gallon or less by the summer time," AAA spokesman Garrett Townsend said.

Falling crude oil prices are a main factor for the drop, but there are other factors as well, Townsend said.

Courtesy of USDA

More than 2,100 pounds of chicken sausage from Perdue Foods is being recalled.

Officials with the Gainesville-based company say the products might have pieces of plastic inside.

The recall is for 24-ounce packages of Perdue Harvestland Italian Style Organic Chicken Sausage with a sell-by date of June 25, 2017.

There are no reports of injuries or illnesses in connection to the recall.

courtesy of the dekalb county sheriff's office

A DeKalb County law enforcement officer is hoping to clear his name after a weekend arrest.

Sheriff Jeffrey Mann is facing charges of indecency and obstruction.

The Atlanta Journal-Constitution quotes an Atlanta police report that says Mann exposed himself while walking toward a police officer Saturday night in Piedmont Park.

John Lorinc / WABE

The tornado warning issued by the National Weather Service for parts of metro Atlanta passed late Thursday night, but the mess remains.

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Winds reached about 40 mph in some spots.

"We have reports of trees down, and there was some minor damage at (Hartsfield-Jackson Atlanta International) airport. Some damage to the cargo buildings and cars on the ramp," said Verona Murrell, a meteorologist with the weather service.

Ivan Sekretarev / associated press file photo

One popular place in Buckhead won't be lighting up the sky this Fourth of July.

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The annual Lenox Square Fourth of July celebration won't have fireworks this year. That's according to the BRAVE public relations firm that represents Lenox Square.

Instead, Lenox officials say they are joining forces with Centennial Olympic Park's Independence Day Celebration to bring what they call the "Best Fireworks Show in Atlanta."

Martha Dalton / WABE

After weeks of silence, former Atlanta U.S. Attorney Sally Yates is expected to talk to members of Congress about contacts between Russia and members of the Trump administration during the presidential transition period.  

Yates will testify before a Senate panel Monday.  

She was acting U.S. attorney general in the final months of the Obama administration and in the early days of Donald Trump's presidency.

Jeff Chiu / Associated Press file

The small town of Temple, Georgia, has become the latest to consider easing penalties for marijuana possession.

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Last night, the city council there was deadlocked in a two-to-two vote on the proposal.

But after a special election in June, when a fifth council member is chosen, the matter will be brought up again.

John Davisson / Invision/AP file

Col. Bruce Hampton died hours after taking part in a celebrity-filled birthday celebration Monday night at Atlanta’s Fox Theatre.

The singer-guitarist turned 70 years old last week, and the event was honored with a four-hour show.

During the encore, Hampton collapsed while onstage and was taken to the hospital.

Shortly before 3 a.m., former Allman Brothers Band guitarist Derek Trucks confirmed on Facebook that Hampton had died.

Graduates line up before the ceremony at South High School, Thursday, Aug. 16, 2007, in Cleveland.
Tony Dejak / Associated Press

Students graduating from college this month may have a good chance of finding employment within Georgia.

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“The unemployment rate is basically back to where it was before the Great Recession. And we’re not staring into another recession for another year or two,” said Dr. Jeff Humphreys, an economics professor at the University of Georgia.

Something else giving the state a leg up: officials are aggressively fighting to boost Georgia's overall economy.

Ric Feld, File / Associated Press

Waffle House co-founder Thomas Forkner Sr., died Wednesday at his house in Johns Creek. He was 98 years old.

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Forkner, a DeKalb County native, went to John Marshall Law School prior to getting drafted into the U.S. Army.

According to a statement from the Waffle House, Forkner was a security officer for the Manhattan Project, which was responsible for producing the first nuclear weapons.

The Georgia Department of Labor announced Thursday that the new March jobless metro Atlanta was 5.9 percent. That is down from 6.1 percent in February and 7 percent from March 2014.
David Goldman / Associated Press

Metro Atlanta's unemployment rate dropped to 4.6 percent in March, according to the Georgia Department of Labor.

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That's down half a point from March 2016.  

"We have 103,000 more jobs today than we had at this same time last year, which is right at a 4 percent job growth over the year," state Labor Commissioner Mark Butler said.

Firefighters spent more than two months battling wildfires in north Georgia and in Tennessee this fall.
John Bazemore / Associated Press

Georgia’s wildfire season is underway, and true to form, a major blaze is burning land in the southern part of the state.

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The West Mims fire has scorched more than 36,000 acres around the Okefenokee Swamp.

It's just over 4 percent contained.

The Georgia Department of Labor announced Thursday that the new March jobless metro Atlanta was 5.9 percent. That is down from 6.1 percent in February and 7 percent from March 2014.
David Goldman / Associated Press

Good news for job seekers in Georgia.

The state's seasonally adjusted unemployment rate fell to 5.1 percent in March, according to the Georgia Department of Labor.

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Labor Commissioner Mark Butler says this is the lowest that rate has fallen to since December 2007.

 In this Sept. 29, 2014 file photo, Secretary of State Brian Kemp announces a March 6, 2012 date, as Georgia's 2012 presidential primary at a news conference in Atlanta.
David Goldman / Associated Press

On a day when Georgia is taking part in a special election that has national implications, news of voting equipment being stolen is likely the last thing most want to hear.

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But Georgia Secretary of State Brian Kemp found out about just that two days after equipment was stolen from a car in Cobb County and issued a statement saying that was "unacceptable."

Courtesy of GDOT

Atlanta commuters caught a break Tuesday morning: Repair work on Interstate 20 was completed a few hours ahead of schedule.

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Georgia Department of Transportation spokeswoman Natalie Dale originally expected I-20 to be reopened around noon, but shortly after 6 a.m., all westbound lanes of the roadway were repaired.

All westbound lanes around Candler and Gresham roads were shut down for hours after part of the roadway buckled Monday.

Ali Guillory / WABE

The Georgia Department of Transportation is being sued for the noise its making as it repairs the collapsed I-85 bridge.

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Fulton County Jail via AP

The homeless man accused of setting the fire that caused the Interstate 85 bridge to collapse March 30 has a high-powered legal team.

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According to court records filed last week, at least four private attorneys said they'd represent Basil Eleby pro bono. Those lawyers are Mawuli Davis, Tiffany Roberts, Gary Spencer and Lawrence Zimmerman.

Eleby is facing two felony charges of arson and damage to property.

CEO Mike Thurmond says DeKalb County has held 37,000 water bills since last year.

DeKalb County officials are meeting with the public today to discuss the area's water-billing problems.

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Representatives from DeKalb County Utility Customer Operations will take questions from customers at the Maloof Auditorium from 4 to 6 p. m.

Atlanta Mayor Kasim Reed refused to answer questions about the lawsuit and walked away from reporters.
Patrick Semansky / Associated Press

Atlanta's mayor has temporarily suspended non-emergency construction activity during the reconstruction of a collapsed section of Interstate 85.

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Mayor Kasim Reed's office said in a news release Monday that Reed issued an executive order suspending the work between 6 a.m. and 8 p.m. from Monday through Friday for parts of the city. Reed says the suspension of construction work is meant to help ease traffic congestion.

David Goldman / Associated Press

A slow parade of red brake lights illuminated the Atlanta highways Monday morning as motorists inched around the city in the wake of a bridge fire and collapse that shut down one of the main highways.

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Atlanta's mayor had warned motorists they'd face longer commutes Monday, as school buses, parents and workers returned to the roads after spring break.

Scott Audette / Associated Press

Otis Nixon, a former Atlanta Braves player who suited up during the team's "worst-to-first" season, is missing.

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Nixon was last seen Saturday morning when the 58-year-old left his house for a golf outing that he never appeared at.

Sunday night, the Woodstock Police Department went to social media asking for help in finding Nixon.

Cassandra Douglas / WABE

Severe storms that tore through the Southeast -- including North Georgia -- caused many travel headaches for people with tickets for Delta Air Lines.

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The Atlanta-based carrier was forced to cancel more than 3,500 flights and delay thousands of others over the past few days after severe storms on Wednesday caused backups at various airports, including Hartsfield-Jackson Atlanta International Airport.

Atlanta Dogwood Festival visitors
Courtesy of the Atlanta Dogwood Festival

One of Atlanta's most enduring events starts today and runs through the weekend.

It's the 81st annual Atlanta Dogwood Festival at Piedmont Park.

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"I don't want to be the one who says, 'Oh, it's got something for people of all ages.' But in this case, it actually does," said Brian Hill, the executive director of the event for the past 10 years.

Jay LaPrete / Associated Press

There's an initiative underway in Columbus, Ga., to become the first city in the world to test all of its senior citizens for Alzheimer's Disease.

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Neurologist Jonathan Liss is leading a three-year study and said about 40,000 people in Columbus are eligible to take part.

Cloudy storm skies over WABE studios in Atlanta.
John Lorinc / WABE News

Cleanup efforts are underway after severe storms tore through the Southeast on Wednesday.  

A long-track tornado was confirmed in Columbus, Georgia, and there are reports of at least three other suspected tornadoes throughout the state.

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