5 things to know Wednesday, April 19

KNOXVILLE, Tenn. (WVLT)- 1. Vigil held for missing LMU student.

On Tuesday night, friends, family and teachers gathered to show support for the continued search of 48-year-old Veronica Casciato in a candlelight vigil on the LMU campus.

"We're hoping that the vigil will show people that we care, we love her, and that she'll come back home safely to us," one of Veronica's professors said.

Close to 50 people attended the vigil.


Loved ones say Veronica Casciato disappeared from her LMU dorm room Thursday, April 6 without a trace. They describe her as a very peaceful and caring person who loves animals and being in nature, as well as taking long scenic drives.

Casciato's family says she was last seen leaving the LMU Harrogate campus to put gas in her 2010 white Toyota Corolla just outside campus around 12:30 PM April 6.

2. Father travels to DC to get guardrails changed nationwide.

A father is taking his fight to the federal government hoping they will remove what he calls faulty guard rail end caps from every road in the country. He said he hopes no more families experience the pain he's gone through after losing his daughter.

Stephen Eimers left Knoxville Tuesday to travel to Washington D.C. to meet with the Federal Highway Administration and representatives from local lawmaker's offices.

He's taking a letter with him that was signed by six other families who said they lost loved one because of the Lindsay X-LITE guardrail end terminals.

The Lindsay Corporation said, "The X-LITE guardrail end terminal has successfully passed crash and safety tests and remains qualified for use on america's roadways. The equipment's inability to singly prevent every tragedy does not indicate a flaw or defect."


3. School bus safety measures advance in state Legislature.

Bills designed to keep school bus riders safe continue to advance in the Tennessee Legislature, with one measure requiring buses to have seat belts clearing another hurdle.

The bills came as a result of a deadly bus wreck in Chattanooga in November that killed six children and injured more than a dozen others.

On Tuesday, a House committee approved a measure that would require that all new school buses be equipped with seat belts. Some lawmakers have expressed concerns about restraints trapping children if the school bus caught on fire or was submerged in water.

"We must protect our children as they travel to and from school each and every day and ensure that their safety is not jeopardized," said House Majority Assistant Leader David Hawk (R-Greeneville), who sponsored the legislation to enhance transportation safety for state students. "It is my hope that this legislation will prevent incidents similar to those in Chattanooga and Knoxville from occurring in the future."

4. Former UT All American Bill Anderson has passed away.

Bill Anderson, co-captain of Tennessee's 1957 football team, who later played for the Green Bay Packers in Super Bowl I and was the longtime football color analyst with John Ward on Vol Radio Network broadcasts for three decades, passed away Tuesday. Anderson, who lived in Knoxville, was 80-years-old.

5. Safety worries dampen Chinese demand for N. Korea tours.

BEIJING (AP) - Some Chinese tourism companies are eliminating or offering fewer trips to neighboring North Korea as regional tensions and safety worries dampen demand.

Representatives of tour companies Ctrip, Caissa and China Youth Travel Service said Wednesday they are no longer organizing trips to North Korea.

State-run media in China and members of the public have been critical of hostile statements from North Korean leaders as the nation pursues a nuclear arsenal.

Caissa sales manager Zhao Cuili says most tourists are unwilling to go because of safety concerns.

The two biggest companies, China International Travel Service and China Travel Service, say they still offer multi-day trips to North Korea.

China International Travel sales manager Zhao Haiwei says passengers must take North Korean airlines after the Civil Aviation Administration of China suspended flights.