Officer turned away from the pollsBangor police officer James Dearing attempted to vote early in the Nov. 2 gubernatorial election, in full uniform, only to be turned away at the polls because he refused to relinquish his gun. The story quickly went viral and was linked by popular news aggregator The Drudge Report, amassing nearly 446,000 page views between four stories. Dearing voted on Election Day, gun and all, and the election warden who had turned him away was dismissed.
Amity triple homicideAroostook County was shocked in June when a father, his son and a family friend were stabbed to death in the small town of Amity. Thayne Ormsby was arrested a little more than a week later in New Hampshire and charged with the slayings. Police allege Ormsby confessed to New Hampshire police, saying the family was involved in drugs, but Ormsby has pleaded not guilty and the case has not yet gone to court. The original story and almost two dozen follow-up articles received almost 280,000 page views collectively, with the original story receiving more than 49,000 page views.
President Obama vacations in MaineIn July, in the midst of the BP oil spill, it was announced that President Barack Obama and his family would visit Mount Desert Island for a weekend getaway. The first family's vacation featured visits to Acadia National Park and lots of dining, including a stop at MDI Ice Cream and a date night at Havana restaurant. Speaking on "The View," Obama called the visit a rose in a month of thorns. The original announcement and several stories while the Obamas were in Maine totaled more than 253,000 page views. http://bdn.to/149015
Family blames gang members for teen’s deathBangor was stunned by the Jan. 27 death of 19-year-old John "Bobby" Surles, who reportedly was shot while defending a friend during a group fight on Cumberland Street. The family claimed the violence was gang-related, which again attracted attention from The Drudge Report. Three stories attracted nearly 231,000 page views.
Republicans take AugustaThe Nov. 2 gubernatorial election was close, and Mainers went to bed with independent Eliot Cutler and Republican Paul LePage virtually tied. The next morning, as the final precincts reported, the winner became clear and the Bangor Daily News declared LePage the winner at 11 a.m. Early in the afternoon, the BDN also projected that Republicans would take the Maine House and Senate, turning Maine red for the first time since 1964. The three stories garnered nearly 195,000 page views altogether. http://bdn.to/1hvh
Woman loses arm after dog attackA Prentiss Township woman's right arm was amputated after she was mauled by two dogs and came near death. Karen Stewart, 41, has spent weeks in the hospital since the November attack. Nine stories received more than 162,000 page views. http://bdn.to/161931
Mars Hill twins are high school valedictorian and salutatorianIn June, two 18-year-old identical twins from Mars Hill were named valedictorian and salutatorian of their high school, separated by only fifteen hundredths of a point. Brianna and Chelsea Hartin said they do almost everything together — join the same clubs, work the same jobs and even wore identical gowns and hairstyles to their senior prom. The twins also appealed to some readers visually, and with the help of news aggregators Fark and Digg their story reached more than 139,000 page views.
UMaine student dies in hit-and-runA BDN deliveryman found the body of 20-year-old Jordyn Bakley on a cold January morning. Police say the University of Maine student was killed in a hit-and-run by a drunken driver and left lying beside an Orono road for several hours. Police arrested a Garrett Cheney of South Berwick in April on charges including manslaughter and operating under the influence. Cheney is awaiting trial. Seven articles received 127,000 page views.
Travolta's dogs struck, killed at BIAMovie star John Travolta's family landed at Bangor International Airport in May on their way to Travolta's Isleboro mansion. His two small dogs were struck and killed by an airport pickup truck as the dogs were being walked on the tarmac. Two stories about the incident received a combined 105,000 page views. (Second story)
Troops still deploying to MideastIn August, while most of the nation was focused on overseas troops coming home, some soldiers were still en route to the Middle East via Bangor International Airport. “It’s funny because the big thing on the news as we were getting ready to leave was all the big hoopla about all the combat forces coming out, so all the soldiers and their families are asking, ‘Why are we going?’” one solider was quoted as saying. The contradiction caught the eye of Drudge and received almost 94,000 page views.
EMMC nurses go on strikeTalks broke down in November between Eastern Maine Medical Center and its nurses union, prompting the nurses to strike for one day. The hospital locked the nurses out for two days preceding the strike and brought in temporary replacements. All told, nearly a dozen stories received a combined 93,000 page views.
Former Marine shot at TogusA former Marine from Aroostook County was shot by law enforcement officers in July outside of the Togus veterans hospital. Lt. James F. Popkowski, 37, who was suffering from a rare form of cancer, reportedly wrote on a social networking site shortly before the shooting that the Togus director was 'a dead man walking' and fired a gun near the hospital before officers responded. The original story and more than a half-dozen follow-ups received more than 88,000 page views combined, with the original story receiving more than 33,000.
Topless march in FarmingtonA University of Maine Farmington student organized a march in late April in which about two dozen men and women walked topless through the town, celebrating gender equality and Maine's indecent exposure law, which outlaws the exposure of a person's genitals but makes no mention of breasts. All told, stories about the event received nearly 83,000 page views, and a story about a similar event held earlier that month in Portland received nearly 22,000 page views. http://bdn.to/142378
Missing woman's body found under bridgeThe body of Jestina Cain was found in September under the Joshua Chamberlain Bridge in Bangor. Cain, a convicted sex offender, had been missing for several days with somebody else's SUV. Police say the death does not appear to be suspicious. The story received more than 61,000 page views.
Food stamp scamA BDN reporter observed two men emptying water bottles behind a Bangor Shaw's supermarket and turning them in for the deposit, a food stamp scam the store's employees describe as common. The BDN's original story in August and a follow-up in December with Attorney General Janet Mills saying the men could face criminal charges received more than 52,000 page views combined. http://bdn.to/151744
Subject of drug raid claims bust is bogusJames P. Fowler, 44, of Pittsfield claims the state owes him thousands of dollars after drug agents raided his home and confiscated 19 marijuana plants. Fowler says he was growing in compliance with Maine’s medical marijuana law. A story in May in which Fowler told his side of the story received 49,000 page views.
Deer's abnormal antlers stop trafficLucas Clark of Northport got the buck of the year in November. The 15-year-old bagged a 20-pointer with two main beams on its right side for a rack that left even veteran hunters stunned. The story received more than 43,000 page views.
Students horrified by bunny butchering stuntUniversity of Maine student Dane Bolding shocked his class in December when he produced a knife and a rabbit in his documentary filmmaking class, apparently to demonstrate how to butcher and skin a rabbit. “I feel like documentary films often put a lot in front of us,” Bolding told the BDN. “I guess that my intention was to really put something in front of the class.” The story received more than 42,000 page views.
Woman sets mark paddling N.Y. to MaineCathy Mumford became the first woman to solo paddle the 740-mile Northern Canoe Forest Trail when she arrived in Fort Kent in August. She completed her journey from New York in 58 days, and her story received more than 42,000 page views.
School suspends dances over grindingBangor High School suspended dances in January because of grinding and other types of dancing the school deemed inappropriate. Grinding, in which a girl grinds her behind into a guy’s lap, is popular at many dances, and the BHS principal described the students’ behavior as out of control. The story received nearly 42,000 page views.
Firefighters save colleague from heart attackCapt. John Prentiss of the Bangor Fire Department was thanking his co-workers around Christmas after they saved him from a heart attack while responding to an emergency call. “I wouldn’t be here today if it weren’t for those four guardian angels,” Prentiss told the BDN, referring to the four firefighters who brought him back from the dead. The story received nearly 40,000 page views.
Horses fall out of trailer, close interstateInterstate 95 was closed briefly in August after two horses belonging to a Palermo family fell out of the back of a trailer. The horses suffered relatively minor injuries. The incident received almost 39,000 page views.
Football players lift car off teammateA Rockland District High School football player was saved by his teammates when they lifted a car off him in October. John Gerry was riding on the hood of a friend's car when he slid off and was pinned under the Toyota. Six teammates and a couple of parents lifted the car off Gerry and held it up for 20 minutes while they waited for emergency personnel to arrive. The story received more than 37,000 page views.
Lepage hires daughter for administration postGov.-elect Paul LePage faced criticism in December when he hired his daughter Lauren to serve as the assistant to his chief of staff. Lauren LePage, 22, is a recent college graduate who will be paid $41,000 per year. Some Democrats accused the father of nepotism, while the incoming administration defended the hire of someone the governor-elect can trust. The story received more than 35,000 page views.
Sugarloaf accidentAt least eight skiers were injured in December when a ski lift at Maine's tallest ski mountain broke, dumping visitors 25 to 30 feet to the ground and stranding others until they could be rescued. The investigation is ongoing. The original story and a follow-up received 42,000 page views. http://bdn.to/162538
For many who read the news every day, lives may be remembered through a series of news events. Some of the bigger events are obvious and resonate with everybody — the Sept. 11 terrorist attacks, presidential elections, wars. Others are more personal — births, deaths, marriages and divorces. As the year ends, we’ve compiled a list of 25 of our most popular stories from 2010 you might remember as we enter 2011.
Here, based on the attention each received on our website, are the most-read stories of 2010. You can leave your thoughts on the year — including stories you think should have made the list — in the comments section below.