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Posts published in “Day: March 26, 2015

Newport deputy retrieves Bulldog

NEWPORT – A Baytown homeowner was given an example of faith and law enforcement when she was reunited with her American Bulldog ward last week.

On March 24, the Padillas returned home from work noted their gate was open and one of their two dogs was gone. The mixed breed lab that remained was growling at his masters in suspicion.

So, they asked their neighbors, got on social media called Baytown P.D. and was referred to Animal Control. They made a report and got fliers printed to put up all over the neighborhood.

Most impacted by all of this was their 4 year old son. That night the family prayed and the son asked that his dog be returned by the weekend. Tuesday became Thursday and after prayers, Elizabeth Padilla asked her son, “You believe it, don’t you?”

“Yes ma’am!” he reacted quickly.

Meanwhile in Crosby, Deputy Greg Nason was on a side street from South Diamondhead Boulevard in Newport and sees a local man walking a dog without a lease. In Harris County the leash law indicates cats and dogs may not run loose or have access to streets or sidewalks in unincorporated Harris County. So the deputy asked the man that was walking near the chocolate American Bulldog, “Is that your dog?”

“Ah, yeah.” the man replied.

“How long have you had that dog?” asked the deputy.

“Well, I found it when I was out at my friends house the other day in Baytown.” the man said.

“What were you doing with your friends when you found the dog?” the deputy continued noticing that the man began to fidget and stammer.

“We were just having some burgers and I saw this dog, ya’ know just walking along the street.”

“What street? How did you get your hands on the dog?”

The Deputy called Animal Control in Baytown and asked about the chocolate American Bulldog and the woman at Animal Control said, “Well, yes deputy we have just gotten a copy of the flier from a local family and I am looking at it right now.”

Elizabeth Padilla showed up at a park in Newport to claim her brother’s dog, just in time to answer her son’s prayer before the weekend with all manner of papers and fliers for the deputy. Since then the extended family when hoping for anything they jokingly ask her son to pray it into reality. “We also pray in gratitude for Greg Nason.

Cody Bill breezes through House Committee

AUSTIN– “Eleven to nothing,” beemed Scott Stephens immediately following the House of Representatives’ Public Education Committee that heard testimony contesting if E.K.G tests should be done on new high school athletes.

According to State Representative Wayne Smith (R-Baytown to Crosby,) “On March 24, the Texas House Committee unanimously approved legislation relating to cardiac assessments of participants in extracurricular athletic activities sponsored or sanctioned by the University Interscholastic League (UIL). House Bill 767 will now be considered in the House Committee on Calendars and, from there, is anticipated to be deliberated on the House floor.”

Scott Stephens spoke fourth in committee hearing.

During testimony before the committee Stephens expounded on his personal loss and a barrage of facts related to the testing. One fact is that when the current high school athlete test was required the E.K.G. did not exist in anything like the compact and portable test that is available now. Thus far nine student athletes have been referred for intensive follow up or surgury. Sudden cardiac arrest is the leading cause of death among student athletes, although fortunately it is rare. It can happen when the heart has a structural defect or abnormal electrical signaling, conditions that show no symptoms.

Since the death of Cody Stephens in May of 2012, the Stephens family of Crosby, lead by father, Scott Setphens, has raised over $500,000 to offer the E.K.G. test to those school districts that could not afford or did not require the test. Scott met with state lawmakers to get a Bill to require E.K.G.s for students who play sports. “We test eyes,” Stephens said. “We test ears. Let’s test the heart.”

Representatives Sylvester Turner, Wayne Smith and Dan Huberty were supporters once having heard from Scott Stephens.

“The path chose me,” Scott said, “I didn’t ask to be here.”

“It was an easy decision to author a bill that would require heart screening for student athletes,” Representative Smith said. “If we can save even one kid’s life, it will be worth it.”

Opponents of the bill would balk at the mandatory nature, apparently ignoring the opt out clause within the bill. They also argued that the mandatory nature would decease accuracy of the evaluation.

Whatever – the committee voted 11 to 0, to recommend the bill to the House of Representatives. According to Repersentative Smith, “Cody Stephen’s story deeply resonated within the small town of Crosby in East Harris County, and his family has worked tirelessly to ensure other student athletes receive the heart screening Cody did not. Scott Stephens founded The Cody Stephens Go Big or Go Home Foundation following the tragic loss of his son. To date, the Foundation has screened 30,000 students across Texas by approaching school districts with grants to help establish a screening program for their athletes. In 2014, seventeen students received some form of heart surgery following the results of their heart screening, a surgery that could prolong their young lives.”