Associated Press

SMYRNA, Tenn. (AP) — Relatives say a Blue Angels pilot who died when his jet crashed in Smyrna had wanted to fly since he was a child.

A U.S. official identified the pilot killed Thursday as Marine Capt. Jeff Kuss. The official wasn't authorized to discuss the matter publicly and spoke on condition of anonymity.

Dolph Kuss says his grandson dreamed of being an aviator since a young age. And Kuss' mother, Janet Kuss, said in a 2014 newspaper interview that her son had "wanted to be a Blue Angel since forever."


NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) — Tennessee Gov. Bill Haslam announced the departure of Department of Correction Commissioner Derrick Schofield to take a job with a publicly-traded corporation that builds and runs prisons.

Haslam praised and thanked Schofield, who has led the department since 2011 and has been criticized frequently for his handling of staffing and safety issues. The 55-year-old Schofield will join GEO Group in Florida as an executive vice president for continuum of care.

MURFREESBORO, Tenn. (AP) — Middle Tennessee forward Reggie Upshaw will undergo surgery Thursday to repair a torn ligament in his left wrist.

School officials said Wednesday in a university release that Upshaw experienced "slight pains" during postseason play. According to the release, the pain returned the last couple of weeks and an MRI on Friday revealed a torn ligament.

MURFREESBORO, Tenn. (AP) — A Rutherford County sheriff's office administrator who faces federal charges has asked for a public defender to represent him, weeks after obtaining a permit to build a nearly $600,000 home.

Joe Russell, the chief deputy over administration, is charged with Sheriff Robert Arnold and Arnold's uncle, John Vanderveer, in a 14-count indictment pertaining to profiting from the sale of electronic cigarettes to inmates.

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RIVIERA BEACH, Fla. (AP) — A former Middle Tennessee State University professor has been accused of fatally stabbing his 79-year-old wife inside their Florida condominium.

Riviera Beach police spokesman Rose Anne Brown tells news outlets that investigators believe 78-year-old James Huhta stabbed Mary Huhta several times inside their Singer Island home and then jumped out the second-floor window.

He was taken to a hospital, where investigators say he admitted to the slaying. Brown says he’s being charged with murder.