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Posts published in “Day: May 24, 2007”

“Drive Through Service” at Highlands Post Office

HIGHLANDS– A quiet afternoon last Wednesday was shattered by an auto crashing through the front door of the Highlands Post Office, travelling through the lobby, knocking out a wall of postal boxes, and ending up inside the sorting area only a few feet from work stations of 3 postal employees.
There were no injuries, as the employees were at other areas of the building or had left for the day, according to supervisor Rosemary Williams, whose desk was only about 3 feet from the car’s path.
The driver, 78 year old Gloria Dean Morgan of Crosby, also was not injured. Authorities believe she mistakenly pushed on the gas in forward gear, trying to free her car from a parked HIGHLANDS– A quiet afternoon last Wednesday was shattered by an auto crashing through the front door of the Highlands Post Office, travelling through the lobby, knocking out a wall of postal boxes, and ending up inside the sorting area only a few feet from work stations of 3 postal employees.

There were no injuries, as the employees were at other areas of the building or had left for the day, according to supervisor Rosemary Williams, whose desk was only about 3 feet from the car’s path.
The driver, 78 year old Gloria Dean Morgan of Crosby, also was not injured. Authorities believe she mistakenly pushed on the gas in forward gear, trying to free her car from a parked position partially mounted on the handicap ramp.
Her 2007 Cadillac was heavily damaged, and the front entrance of the building, and about 300 mailboxes were destroyed.
It is expected that new postal boxes will take several weeks to arrive and new doors several days.
Postal employees remember that this is the second or third time that a car has driven through the entrance, the last time occuring about 5 years ago.

Crosby VFD’s Bronto does it all

By LEWIS SPEARMAN
CROSBY – The local volunteer fire dept. has a new truck that can put firefighters where ever they need to be for rescue, and contain chemical and house fires with foam and water.
The 114 Foot Bronto Aerial Platform Truck, made by Emergency One, first arrived here May 14 and may be in service as early as July 4 once the crews have been trained for it and all forms of new equipment have been added.
According to Chief Alan Kulak, “The manufacturer will send out trainers to help us do extensive training in order to certify my people to be qualified to operate it.”
According to Russell White, “The capabilities of this truck is going to increase our capabilities immensely. You’d be amazed at the stability even at the elevated heights which is very helpful in rescue situations. The hose mounts on the platform are capable of spraying 2000 gallons per minute and the air tanks on the arms provide air to firefighters on the platform when fighting fires inside the smoke or fumes.”

Chief Kulak stated, “I did an assessment of the district, we have an estimated hundred plus buildings here or coming that we would need this truck to use on: the new church complex, the high school, the middle school, the new Wal-Mart, two chemical plants. In fact the chemical plants help to fund the foam system; KMCO and Arkema contributed $5500 went 50 – 50% to pay for that system in case they had a fire at their facilities. This truck is going to come in handy if we have to rescue from office buildings, hotels or two plus story buildings. ”
Randy Foster of Harris County ESD#80 board indicates, “A lot of study went into determining what would best suit the needs of this community and we determined this truck will best meet our communities needs now and into the future. This is the only truck of its kind in southeast Texas”
“In our last ISO audit (that provides our protection classification,) we were just on the borderline of needing a new ladder truck and actually exceeded the need with the new high school the Super Wal-Mart, Mount Rose Church in Barrett Station that put us over the limit for a standard ladder. This truck can handle those buildings. Hopefully, with this truck and some changes we are planning in the future we can get our ISO classification even lower once they come out and re-audit us. Every time we make improvements they re-audit us.”

Rodeo Tough Enough to Wear Pink featured

Tickets to the Crosby Fair & Rodeo are available online at crosbyfairandrodeo.net. The rodeo Cook-off begins Friday, June 1 with a Cody Kouba, Roger Creager concert and party with parade and cook-off the following day. Sunday June 3 is Hispanic Heritage Day with music and a rodeo. The rodeo auction is to be held Wednesday, June 6. Thursday, June 7 through Saturday, June 9 the Crosby Fair & Rodeo show will feature PRCA Rodeo and concerts from Stoney LaRue and Wade Bowen; Friday, June 8 is Shriner’s Night and will have Jason Boland and Aaron Watson. Saturday’s concert will feature Blaine Larson and Charlie Robison.

Friends, co-workers salute Hendrix at retirement celebration

By BOBBY HORN JR.
CROSBY—Dr. Don Hendrix, who has given Crosby ISD the past 21 years of his life as well as the past 42 years as an educator was honored on Saturday night with a retirement celebration.
The affair, held at the high school commons, featured a three-part program followed by a coffee and cake reception.
Serving as master of ceremonies, superintendent-elect Mike Joseph narrated a multi-media presentation on the life and career of Hendrix. Going back to his days as a child on a sharecropper’s farm and early years in Highlands to his graduation from Deer Park High, Joseph told how he moved from “Coach Hendrix” at Lyford High School to principal in Johnson City. During the presentation pictures of Hendrix with a mustache or wearing striped bell bottom slacks drew laughs from the audience.
“Crosby ISD will never be the same (without Hendrix),” Joseph said.
Following a standing ovation, a series of special presentations began.
The administration staff composed a humorous film called “Searching for Dr. Hendrix,” which concluded with a sentiment from Hendrix’s assistance Veronica Ramos that was felt throughout the audience “We will truly miss you.”
Each campus followed with their own creative tribute to Hendrix.

Crosby Kindergarten presented a DVD that featured a “Dr. Seuss-style” book tribute. Barrett Primary followed with the Crosby ISD version of “Jeopardy” featuring Hendrix trivia.
Newport Elementary gave Hendrix a basket of memories which included a photo of how he looked when he was hired in 1986, blueprints from the high school and his “final test,” a certificate for golf at Newport County Club.
Drew Intermediate’s presentation featured students performing a traditional Mexican dance and faculty as “The Drew Girls” plus ‘Rustina’ performing “Hard to Say Goodbye.”
Recognizing Hendrix’s love for Zydeco music, students from Crosby Middle performed a Zydeco selection.
Students from Crosby High created a video tribute which focused on Hendrix’s first day of retirement. The film concluded with Hendrix serving as an official Crosby ISD greeter, much like those at Wal-Mart. Hendrix was even given a red vest to wear, special retired superintendent parking sign and a “key” to the district.
Following an intermission the laughs continued with a “roast and toast”

Adventures in the garden

Did some sod busting this morning by digging up potatoes. Scratched around and below the plants for a few with my hand to see if I could find some. Bout the time a couple of nice ones were dug up something sharp went into and under the fingernail, right middle finger.
It was enough to make one want to say NO MAS but there is too much sweat labor invested in the potato patch to give it up. I decided then and there I was going high tech and used the shovel.
Managed to dig up about half bushel of red potatoes out of that little space. Took them in the kitchen and the Mrs. asked what I was going to do with all those potatoes.
Have been told not to wash the potato until you are ready to cook it.
One thing for sure, next year’s potato patch will not be planted as deep.

The briar patch is narrowing down with the blackberries. The birds have sure seemed to enjoy them. After the next picking, the patch will be trimmed and manicured for next year’s growth. By doing so, this will allow next year’s crop to produce more berries, up a bit higher rather than near the ground. Of course the upper briar branches are tied to a wire to grow up rather than over.
Thinking of planting purple hull peas next, when a bit more room becomes available in the little garden. As has been said before in Two Cents Worth, it’s amazing what you can do with dirt.
A little caveat to you pea/bean eaters – legume (big word that means opens along the seam, i.e., split in two) has been proven on yours truly that they will kick in the gout with its high purine content no doubt!
Grew up on peas and cornbread, guess one evidently needs to limit the serving of the other good stuff, eh?
Can ask the twins this day if they know what a bowl of special is, and they will tell you.
Tis peas, cornbread, diced tomato, diced onion and a glass of tea.
Taught the boys to eat hot peppers with that dish. Take itty bitty bites of pepper, not too much cause it’ll burn. Always eat a pinch of pepper with food in your mouth, other wise it’s too hot.
They have since discovered the day after hot too.

Investing for kids? Keep these dates in mind

If you have young children or grandchildren, you may want to start investing for them – and you should. As you invest, however, you’ll need to keep a couple of key dates in mind – because they can make a difference in your family’s tax situation and your control of your child’s or grandchild’s assets.
One important date to remember is the day your child or grandchild turns 17 – because that’s the last year he or she will be affected by the “Kiddie Tax.” The Kiddie Tax applies to unearned income – typically from investments held in the child’s name – above an annual threshold, which, in 2007, is $1,700. Of that $1,700, the first $850 of earnings is tax free, but the next $850 will be taxed at the child’s rate, which is typically 10 percent. Any income above that $1,700 will be taxed at the parents’ rate, which could be as high as 35 percent.
However, while your child’s or grandchild’s tax rate may be 10 percent, it doesn’t necessarily mean that every investment that generates $850 in earnings will be taxed at that same rate. For example, a child will only have to pay a 5 percent tax rate on income from most types of stock dividends. (At least, that’s the case for now; Congress is considering legislation that would subject the $850 – or whatever the future amount may be – to the 10 percent rate, no matter what the source of the income.)

On the other hand, if a child invests in growth stocks – those that generally don’t pay dividends – he or she won’t generate significant unearned income until after the shares are sold. So, if you and your child or grandchild follow a “buy and hold” strategy with these stocks until the child is at least 18, he or she would only have to pay the capital gains tax, which is currently just 5 percent for people in the 10 percent tax bracket. (This rate drops to 0 percent for the years 2008 through 2010, but the proposed legislative changes would deny the 0 percent rate to children.)
Once your child or grandchild turns 18, he or she will no longer be affected by the Kiddie Tax. The age of 18 is also important if you’ve been investing for your children or grandchildren through either the Uniform Gift to Minors Act (UGMA) or the Uniform Transfer to Minors Act (UTMA). Essentially, UGMA/UTMA allows you to fund an account for a child, but limit the child’s access to the account until he or she reaches the age of majority – either 18 or 21 in most states. The child owns the account, but you are named as custodian, and you control the account until the child is no longer a minor. At that point, the custodial relationship ends and the child assumes control over the account.
In other words, once the child is 18 (or 21), there’s no guarantee that he or she will use the money for college, as you may have intended. So, if you really want to put all your child’s investment money into a college fund, you might want to consider a 529 College Savings Plan, which gives you significant control over the funds, along with tax advantages. Contributions are tax-deductible in certain states for residents who participate in their own state’s plan. You should note that a 529 College Savings Plan could reduce a beneficiary’s ability to qualify for financial aid.
In any case, if you’ve got investments earmarked for your children or grandchildren, be aware of the changes that will occur once they turn 17 and 18. Those years can be challenging enough without any financial “surprises.”

Armored car guard killed in accident

By BOBBY HORN JR.
DAYTON—An armored car guard was killed Tuesday when the vehicle in which she was riding overturned on Highway 146, south of Dayton.
According to Dayton Police, a vehicle from AT Systems was travelling northbound around 1 p.m. As the vehicle approached FM 1413 a southbound vehicle began top passed close to the armored car. Investigators say that the AT Systems driver, Jose Alaniz, move the vehicle closer to the right side of the road. When a rear wheel hit the soft shoulder Alaniz attempted to correct the vehicle, however he overcompensated sending the vehicle across the centerline.
The armored car struck the other shoulder and went into the ditch, rolling over onto its top.
When medics arrived they found Alaniz, shaken but not injured. A guard in the back of the vehicle was not so lucky.
Katinal Brown suffered critical injuries in the accident.
Memorial-Hermann Hospital’s Life Flight Air Ambulance was called to the scene. Originally a landing zone was set up near the accident scene, however medics decided that due to her condition she needed to be transported to Liberty-Dayton Community Hospital. Ground transport took to a grassy area behind Brookshire Brothers grocery in Dayton, where she was transferred to Life Flight.
A spokesperson for Memorial-Hermann said that Brown later died from injuries sustained.
Throughout the investigation, police from Dayton created a perimeter around the armored car to protect money and weapons inside until a second vehicle from AT Systems could arrive.
Police say they don’t believe the actions of the other car was an intentional attack on the vehicle.

Graduation held for area high schools

This weekend, students across the area will make that final walk as they graduate from high school.
Barbers Hill will hold commencement on May 26 at Eagle Stadium, beginning at 8 p.m.
This year’s valedictorian is Brian Bender. Salutatorian is John Oranger.
Also making the top 10 were Ashley Rodriguez, 3; Cameron Campbell, 4; Jill Robertson, 5; Leslie Browder, 6; Michak Moore, 7; Ben Farmer, 8; Chase berrera, 9 and Sarah Marshall, 10.
Dayton Bronco fans will travel to Beaumont for commencement on May 26. The ceremony will be held at Montagne Center on the Lamar University campus at 3 p.m.
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The top 10 of 2007 are Amy Clanton, valedictorian; Matthew Broyles salutatorian; Brenna Spence, 3; Jonathan Levi Tatum, 4; Jason Heilig, 5; Randi Kay Riley, 6; Jacob Barnes, 7; Jennifer Taylor, 8; Lena Meadows, 91 and Leslie Sutton, 10.
The Sterling High Class of 2007 will graduate on May 26 at Stallworth Stadium at 8 a.m.
The class’s top 10 are Eugene Martir, valedictorian; Alyssa Linares, saluatorian; Joshua Jagnanan, 3; Kari Whatley, 4; Thakur Jaini, 5; Azka Ashraf, 6; Lisa Cercaldo, 7; Paula Dancel, 8; Auusten Oliver, 9 and Lauren Adams, 10.
Commencement for Ross S. Sterling High School will be on May 26, beginning at 6 p.m.
To ensure the safety of graduates and audience members and maintain the dignity of the occasion, GCCISD has compiled a list of items that will not be permitted at Stallworth Stadium during the upcoming Lee and Sterling graduations.
Among the items that will be prohibited inside the stadium are balloons, weapons or firearms, air horns/whistles or other noisemakers, coolers or containers, fireworks or explosives, illegal substances, Frisbees and beach balls, laser pens, or knives of any size, including Leatherman’s and multi-purpose tools.