Mark Memmott

Mark Memmott is one of the hosts of NPR's "The Two-Way" news blog.

"The Two-Way," which Memmott helped to launched when he came to NPR in 2009, focuses on breaking news, analysis, and the most compelling stories being reported by NPR News and other news media.

Before joining NPR, Memmott worked for nearly 25 years as a reporter and editor at USA Today. He focused on a range of coverage from politics, foreign affairs, economics, and the media. He's reported from places across the Unites States and the world, including half a dozen trips to Afghanistan in 2002-2003.

During his time at USA Today, Memmott, helped launch and lead three USAToday.com news blogs: "On Deadline," "The Oval" and "On Politics," the site's 2008 presidential campaign blog.

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The Two-Way
6:48 am
Mon July 8, 2013

'Devastated' Quebec Town Waits For Word About Missing

Comforting each other: A group of young women in Lac-M├ęgantic, Quebec, on Sunday. People there are waiting to hear the fate of 40 people still missing after Saturday's train derailment and the massive explosions that followed.
Mathieu Belanger Reuters /Landov

Originally published on Mon July 8, 2013 4:53 pm

With 40 people still missing after massive explosions Saturday in the center of their town, the people of Lac-M├ęgantic, Quebec, begin the week "with fears that the death toll from a weekend rail disaster could surge," CBC News writes.

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The Two-Way
6:14 am
Mon July 8, 2013

10 Killed In Crash Of Alaska Air Taxi

Police and emergency personnel stand near the remains of a fixed-wing aircraft that was engulfed in flames Sunday at the Soldotna Airport in Alaska.
Rashah McChesney Peninsula Clarion

Originally published on Mon July 8, 2013 12:11 pm

One of the worst civilian aviation accidents in the state in at least 25 years killed all 10 people aboard an air taxi in Alaska on Sunday, the Anchorage Daily News writes.

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The Two-Way
5:43 am
Mon July 8, 2013

Dramatic Crash Video Among Latest Clues In Asiana Accident

Asiana Flight 214, a Boeing 777 aircraft, after Saturday's crash at San Francisco International Airport.
NTSB/Contra Costa Times MCT/Landov

Originally published on Mon July 8, 2013 10:19 am

  • On 'Morning Edition': NPR's Richard Gonzales reports

"Oh my God ... oh my God ... oh my God."

That was plane spotter Fred Hayes' reaction Saturday as he videotaped what turned out to be the crash of Asiana Airlines Flight 214 in San Francisco.

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The Two-Way
4:39 am
Mon July 8, 2013

Dozens Killed By Shots Fired At Pro-Morsi Gathering In Cairo

A wounded man is helped from the scene Monday in Cairo after shots were fired during a protest against the ouster of President Mohammed Morsi.
Mohammed Saber EPA /LANDOV

Originally published on Tue July 9, 2013 4:44 am

(This post was last updated at 5:45 p.m. ET.)

An already dangerous, volatile situation turned even deadlier early Monday in Cairo when dozens of people were killed at a protest outside the Republican Guard facility where it's believed ousted President Mohammed Morsi is being held. Most of those who died are reported to have been among a large group of Morsi's supporters.

Update at 5:45 p.m. ET. Date Set For Egypt's Election

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The Two-Way
1:31 pm
Sat July 6, 2013

Developing: Boeing 777 Crashes At San Francisco International

Traffic backs up on Route 101 after the crash.
Sarah Rice Getty Images

Originally published on Sun July 7, 2013 5:47 am

Two people died Saturday in the crash-landing at San Francisco International Airport of Asiana Airlines Flight 214 from Seoul, South Korea, San Francisco's fire chief says.

Fire Chief Joanne Hayes-White says everyone who had been on board the flight is accounted for.

National Transportation Safety Board chairwoman Debbie Hersman said investigators were being deployed to the scene.

"Obviously, we have a lot of work to do," she said, noting that it was too early to tell what had caused the crash.

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The Two-Way
1:09 pm
Sat July 6, 2013

VIDEO: Inferno In Quebec Town When Train Explodes

Originally published on Sat July 6, 2013 3:13 pm

At least one person has died, CTV News reports, after a freight train pulling tank cars full of crude oil exploded early Saturday in a small Quebec town about 160 miles east of Montreal.

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The Two-Way
11:54 am
Sat July 6, 2013

ElBaradei To Be Egypt's Prime Minister

Mohamed ElBaradei.
Mohamed Abid El Ghany Reuters/Landov

Originally published on Sat July 6, 2013 6:00 pm

(Click here for our most recent updates.)

The office of the interim Egyptian president is now backtracking on reports of the appointment of Mohamed ElBaradei as prime minister. NPR's Leila Fadel reports this comes "after the second-largest Islamist party in Egypt [Salfi el-Nour], which has so far been on board with the military coup, reportedly rejected the appointment."

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The Two-Way
10:45 am
Sat July 6, 2013

Year Later, 'Aaron's Last Wish' To Leave A $500 Tip Lives On

Aaron Collins, who wanted to leave a big tip.
Facebook.com/AaronsLastWish
  • Seth Collins on the decision to spread the tips around the nation
  • Seth Collins on being happy to show people that good things can happen

Sunday brings a sad memory for the family of Aaron Collins. It marks one year since the 30-year-old Kentucky man died.

But the heart warming story of "Aaron's last wish" continues.

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The Two-Way
9:05 am
Sat July 6, 2013

France's Marion Bartoli Wins Women's Title At Wimbledon

France's Marion Bartoli celebrates her women's singles championship at The All England Lawn Tennis and Croquet Club in Wimbledon.
Dominic Lipinski PA Photos/Landov

Marion Bartoli of France won the women's singles title at Wimbledon on Saturday, defeating Germany's Sabine Lisicki in straight sets, 6-1, 6-4.

It's Bartoli's first "Grand Slam" title.

Sports Illustrated was posting "live analysis" through the match. At the end, it wrote that:

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The Two-Way
8:41 am
Sat July 6, 2013

Giffords Reaches 'Responsible Gun Owners' At Firing Ranges

Former Rep. Gabrielle Giffords, D-Ariz., at a firing range in Nevada earlier this week. Her husband, retired astronaut Mark Kelly, was behind her.
Americans for Responsible Solutions
  • From 'Weekend Edition Saturday': Mark Kelly talks with NPR's Linda Wertheimer

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The Two-Way
7:26 am
Sat July 6, 2013

'Horrific Attack' On School In Nigeria; Dozens Dead

Nigeria.
CIA World Factbook

There's very disturbing news from Nigeria:

"At least 29 pupils and a teacher have been killed in a pre-dawn attack by suspected Islamists on a school in northeastern Nigeria, reports say." (BBC News)

The BBC's Will Ross, reporting from Lagos, adds that "it sounds like a horrific attack." Survivors say the gunmen set fire to buildings. Some of the students were burned alive, he reports, while "others were shot as they tried to run away."

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The Two-Way
6:26 am
Sat July 6, 2013

If Snowden Tries To Get To Latin America, Cuba Could Be Key

Former National Security Agency contractor Edward Snowden, who spilled secrets about the NSA's surveillance programs, has been condemned by U.S. officials. But he's been praised by some people around the world. In Berlin this week, supporters carried his picture at a demonstration.
Ole Spata DPA /LANDOV

Originally published on Sat July 6, 2013 7:22 pm

Update at 9:22 p.m. ET. Snowden Reveals Documents On Brazil:

Amid requests and offers of asylum in Latin America, Edward Snowden has apparently released documents showing that the U.S. spied on millions of emails and phone calls of Brazilians. NPR's Lourdes Garcia-Navarro tells our Newscast Desk the report, published in the Rio de Janeiro paper O Globo, was co-written by Glenn Greenwald, who has been covering the National Security Agency's programs.

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The Two-Way
5:44 am
Sat July 6, 2013

After Deadly Clashes, Cairo Is Calmer But Still Tense

A poster showing ousted Egyptian President Mohammed Morsi was hanging on barbed wire outside the headquarters of the Republican Guard in Cairo on Saturday. On the other side, guards stood watch.
Khaled Elfiqi EPA/Landov

Originally published on Sun July 7, 2013 11:08 am

(We most recently updated the top of this post at 2:05 p.m. ET.)

The death toll from clashes Friday and into early Saturday in Egypt now stands at 36, authorities say. That estimate, released just before 11 a.m. ET, was up from the 30 deaths that had been reported when the day began.

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The Two-Way
1:44 pm
Fri July 5, 2013

40 Years Of Disco Duds Prove A Teacher Can Be Awesome, Too

Dale Irby in 1973 (left) when his streak began, and in 2012, when the last of his 40 wonderful school photos was taken.
Courtesy of Dale Irby and The Dallas Morning News

One word came to mind this week when we saw the stories about Texas physical education teacher Dale Irby and how he had worn the same "groovy shirt and sweater vest" for every school photo in the past 40 years:

Awesome.

Before we explore his awesomeness, though, here's some background.

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The Two-Way
8:36 am
Fri July 5, 2013

That's 'My Son Screaming' On 911 Call, Trayvon's Mother Says

Trayvon Martin's mother, Sybrina Fulton, testifies Friday in Sanford, Fla.
Gary W. Green/pool Getty Images

Originally published on Fri July 5, 2013 4:40 pm

Update at 5:50 p.m. ET. The prosecution concluded its case Friday in the trial of George Zimmerman. Afterward, the judge denied a request by the defense to acquit Zimmerman of second-degree murder. The defense had argued that the prosecution had failed to prove its case against him.

Our original post:

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The Two-Way
7:54 am
Fri July 5, 2013

VIDEO: California Fireworks Mishap Injures Dozens

At least 28 people were injured Thursday in Simi Valley, Calif., when many of the fireworks at a July 4th celebration ignited too close to the ground. People there caught the accident and posted videos.
YouTube.com

There were some terrifying moments Thursday night at the July 4th fireworks celebration in Simi Valley, Calif.

As videos from the scene show, something went wrong and a large number of the explosives detonated much too close to the ground. One such video is posted here.

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The Two-Way
6:50 am
Fri July 5, 2013

Better Than Expected Job Growth In June

At a job fair in Los Angeles last month, job seekers filled out applications.
Kevork Djansezian Getty Images

Originally published on Fri July 5, 2013 8:48 am

More jobs were created last month than economists had expected, but the unemployment rate held steady.

The Bureau of Labor Statistics reported Friday that employers added 195,000 jobs to public and private payrolls. That's better than the gain of 165,000 that forecasters had predicted.

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The Two-Way
5:51 am
Fri July 5, 2013

Pope John Paul II Will Be Made A Saint

Pope John Paul II at Giants Stadium in New Jersey in 1995.
David Ake AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Fri July 5, 2013 8:03 am

Pope John Paul II will be made a saint, the Vatican announced Friday, according to Reuters and other news outlets, including Italy's La Repubblica.

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The Two-Way
5:13 am
Fri July 5, 2013

Egypt On Edge: Nation Braces For Protests Of Morsi's Ouster

Supporters of the Muslim Brotherhood hold a picture of deposed President Mohammed Morsi during a rally outside Cairo's Rabaa al-Adawiya mosque on Friday.
Mahmud Hams AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Fri July 5, 2013 8:14 pm

(Click here for updates.)

After ousted Egyptian President Mohammed Morsi's supporters in the Muslim Brotherhood called for mass protests Friday, there were reports of violence in the streets of Cairo and some other cities.

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The Two-Way
8:32 am
Thu July 4, 2013

As Southwest Finally Cools, Southeast Gets Drenched

That's a lot of hail: the scene in Santa Rosa, N.M., after the storm blew through Wednesday.
Santa Rosa, N.M., Fire Department

The good news from the National Weather Service:

"The Western U.S. will begin to cool on Wednesday after several days of record-high temperatures. Temperatures will still be hot in many locations, but will be closer to normal for this time of year."

The not-so-good news if you're in the Southeast and have outdoor plans on Independence Day:

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The Two-Way
7:44 am
Thu July 4, 2013

Top Stories: Crisis In Egypt; Assad's Confidence

Originally published on Thu July 4, 2013 8:30 am

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The Two-Way
7:36 am
Thu July 4, 2013

Here She Is: Statue Of Liberty Reopens On Independence Day

She's open for visitors again.
Reena Rose Sibayan The Jersey Journal/Landov

Originally published on Thu July 4, 2013 8:37 am

It's an even more notable July 4th this year on Liberty Island in New York Harbor, where the Statue of Liberty is open for the first time since Superstorm Sandy pummeled the Mid-Atlantic region last fall.

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The Two-Way
6:59 am
Thu July 4, 2013

VIDEO: Toledo Driver Rescued After Huge Sinkhole Swallows Car

After a day's worth of heavy news from Egypt, let's take a quick break with something completely different.

Wednesday in Toledo, a sinkhole opened up under driver Pamela Knox's Chevy Malibu, and the aftermath of the vehicle's drop beneath the ground produced some impressive videos.

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The Two-Way
6:00 am
Thu July 4, 2013

Egypt Begins Dangerous New Phase As Interim Leader Steps In

People dance and cheer in Cairo's Tahrir Square on July 4, the day after former Egyptian President Mohammed Morsi was ousted from power.
Spencer Platt Getty Images

Originally published on Thu July 4, 2013 9:09 pm

  • From 'Morning Edition': Soraya Sarhaddi Nelson in Cairo
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The Two-Way
8:55 am
Wed July 3, 2013

As Mandela Lies In Hospital, Family Fights Over Kin's Graves

In 1990, Nelson Mandela (wearing a dark suit, pointing down) visited the graves of family members in Qunu, South Africa. A grandson's 2011 decision to move some relatives' remains to another site was followed by a lawsuit and court action.
Juda Ngenya Reuters /Landov

Originally published on Wed July 3, 2013 5:25 pm

Former South African President Nelson Mandela remains in stable but critical condition at a Pretoria hospital, where he's been since June 8 for treatment of a serious lung infection.

The anti-apartheid hero, who survived 27 years in jail and decades of oppression, is 15 days shy of his 95th birthday.

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The Two-Way
6:54 am
Wed July 3, 2013

Good Signs: Jobless Claims Dip And Job Growth Picks Up

A help wanted sign in the window of a clothing store in Pasadena, Calif., last month.
Kevork Djansezian Getty Images

Three reports Wednesday morning all offer at least modestly good news about the U.S. economy:

-- There were 343,000 first-time claims for jobless benefits last week, down 5,000 from the week before, says the Employment and Training Administration.

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The Two-Way
6:10 am
Wed July 3, 2013

Here's How One Weird Play Saved Homer Bailey's No-Hitter

Homer Bailey of the Cincinnati Reds during the no-hitter he pitched Tuesday.
Joe Robbins Getty Images

Cincinnati Reds pitcher Homer Bailey tossed the second no-hitter of his major league career Tuesday night as his Reds beat the San Francisco Giants 3-0.

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The Two-Way
5:01 am
Wed July 3, 2013

Egypt's President Morsi Is Ousted From Power By Military

Protesters gather at Tahrir Square. Morsi remained defiant as the military pressed the president and his political opponents to strike a compromise.
Amr Nabil AP

Originally published on Thu July 4, 2013 5:27 am

(Click here for most recent update: 7 p.m. ET.)

A huge celebration has begun in Egypt's Tahrir Square, after army chief Gen. Abdel Fattah al-Sisi proclaimed that Mohammed Morsi is out as president and the country's constitution has been suspended. The new plan calls for Egypt's chief justice to lead an interim government and set a date for early presidential elections.

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