DALLAS ― As we take a look back on 2009, the news stories that stood out centered on issues that affected us all … all year long.
From sickness to the economy to dangerous weather or dangers averted, it was a year that many North Texans will never forget.
The lines out in front of the health department summed up what could have been the biggest story of the year. The story line was fear. The culprit was the swine flu.
Although only a few actually died, the random and swift nature of some of those deaths had schools closed, hospitals full and everyone relearning how to sneeze.
The other story dominating our lives was the economy.
General Motors shut down for two months. Nortel in Richardson filed for bankruptcy. Cities slashed budgets and construction cranes came to a halt.
The owner of the Texas Rangers and Dallas Stars came to default on a $500 million in loans.
But another sports owner celebrated excess with the record breaking opening of the most luxurious stadium on the planet. Yet a few months earlier, high winds caused his team's flimsy indoor practice facility to collapse.
Another sports figure also suffered a deflating event, the arrest of Dirk Nowitski's fiancé, Cristal Taylor, who had guarded her extensive criminal past.
Criminal behavior is something no one expected of former Dallas Mayor Pro Tem Don Hill and his wife, but both were convicted on multiple counts of bribery and extortion in the city hall corruption trial.
The FBI also got its man in perhaps the most chilling and sinister plot ever in Dallas. Hosam Smadi, a Jordanian national, thought he was about to blow up Fountain Place tower in downtown when the would-be act of terrorism blew up in his face. The explosives he planted were fakes.
And police work in Dallas will soon take a new face as Police Chief David Kunkle announced his retirement after more than five years on the job … a long tenure for Dallas, and for many North Texans a very long year.