Texas Department of Public Safety pilots monitor the Rio Grande River near Los Ebanos, Texas.
Credit Bill Kostroun / AP
Texas Gov. Rick Perry speaks at a fundraising event for the New York GOP earlier this month. Some think he may be highlighting border security in anticipation of a run for the White House.
Credit John Burnett / NPR
When a group of suspected illegal crossers spots DPS helicopters hovering over the Rio Grande, they run and hop back into this truck which speeds away from the river near Reynosa, Mexico.
Note: This is the first of a two-part series
The federal government claims the southwest border is more secure than it's ever been. There are more agents and barriers, more choppers, drones, sensors and hi-tech cameras than ever before.
Yet, state officials in Texas maintain the illegal flow of people and drugs is worse than ever — proof, they say, the border is out of control. To back up his rhetoric, Texas Gov. Rick Perry has declared his own war on the traffickers.
A Marine walks along a mud wall while conducting a search and clearing operation in Afghanistan's Helmand province, as the dust from a wheat thrashing machine falls like snow.
A very small number of Americans are now serving in the military — less than 1 percent. Some are looking for direction; others are inspired by a sense of patriotism or by a family member who served in an earlier war. In the series Who Serves, NPR looks at the troops who have made a decision few others have — to fight in America's wars.
In 1985, Chris Turner was convicted of the murder of Catherine Fuller. After spending decades in prison, Turner is now out on parole; he maintains his innocence. He is shown here in his childhood neighborhood in Northeast Washington, D.C., about 100 yards away from what was Fuller's home.
Credit Tim Cammett / M. Layton Photography
Turner took the field at the Washington Nationals baseball stadium, where he was recently honored as an employee of the month.
Credit Courtesy of Chris Turner
Chris Turner stands with his son, Chris Elliott, at the U.S. Penitentiary in Allenwood, Pa., about 16 years ago.
In the fall of 1984, in a rain-soaked alley in Washington, D.C., a street vendor found a tiny woman lying dead on the floor of a garage.
She was Catherine Fuller, a mother of six, who left home to run a quick errand and never came back. She had been beaten, sexually assaulted and killed all within sight of a busy public street.
The murder horrified and frightened the city. Over the next few months, police arrested 17 people in connection with the crime.
Peggy O'Brien Murphy receives a massage from therapist Loretta Lanz. O'Brien Murphy was among the participants in a study that found both relaxation and deep tissue massage are effective treatments for lower back pain.
Low back pain is second only to cold symptoms when it comes to complaints that send people to the doctor. Sooner or later, back pain seems to get most of us.
Now, a study in the July 5 issue of the Annals of Internal Medicine shows that massage is an effective treatment for lower back pain. In some cases, researchers report, the benefits of massage lasted for six months or longer.