This week, we recognize all the youngsters who in the next few days will complete their high school years. Some day they will call the years they spent in school with their friends ‘the good old days’ because life will never again be the same. We take this opportunity to recognize and thank all the educators, who have chosen a profession that molds and prepares our youngsters to take on much more responsibilities. Until now, the graduates have been comfortable in the nest, enjoying life without all the baggage adulthood brings. As well as their family, their teachers have played a far greater part in their childhood than they now realize. Someday however, they will appreciate those teachers who were there in those formative years. Regardless of the friends they make along the way, there will always be that bond with friends who were former classmates. Even though everyone leaving school will go their separate ways, in their hearts they will never be too far from the joys of childhood. Best of luck to all the grads. Happy journey. Many parents have told me that no matter how proud they are of their graduates, they realize life will change for them also and they will be smiling through their tears on graduation day.***** I’d best move along. Come along, I promise it won’t do you no harm.


The 50th anniversary of President John F. Kennedy’s death will bring months of tributes, ending with the saddest of all November anniversaries on November 22. Many speeches, books, magazines, news stories, television specials and admirers will pay tribute to the forever youthful president who inspired millions and was cut down in his prime in Dallas on Nov. 22, 1963. He’s frozen in the minds of all of us who recall the event. To some degree, the JFK legacy has affected all nine presidents who followed him. That includes President Obama, whose name will be invoked in three anniversaries to be celebrated next month, June 10, June 16, and a trip Obama will make to Berlin ahead of the 50th anniversary of Kennedy’s “Ich bin cin Berliner” speech. Get ready to know JFK again. To us old enough, Kennedy and his murder was brought into our homes by television just minutes after the fact. That vision has never left our consciousness. You can also expect the conspiracy theorists to come with a slew of books. Forgotten in the six month celebration will be that Nov. 22 also marks 50 years since LBJ become United States president.


Pope Francis, born Jorge Bergoglio, in Argentina, to Italian immigrants, has been head of the Catholic Church worldwide only two months, yet he has shed some of the pompous symbols of papal power. The new Pope’s popularity is growing day by day. When he appears in St. Peter’s Square, the crowd shouts his name in every imaginable language and women hold out their babies to be kissed. He often gets off his pope mobile to shake hands, to hug and be hugged. Bergoglio wants to be the priest that everyone wants to have in his parish. Francis is steeped in the global issues of today and of the future. He is deeply concerned by what he calls the negative aspects of globalization. Pope Francis puts the poor front and center. He launched attacks on the global financial system that he calls “cult of money” that does not help the poor. Pope Francis has shunned the papal apartment. He lives in an communal setting in a Vatican residence where daily he delivers early morning mass. The renaissance vestments, golden crucifix and red shoes dear to Pope Benedict have been put away. There is a new and different pope in town


14 Years Ago-1999

Attorney Sharon Bearden held his annual bar party last week outside, behind he and Wayne Peveto‘s office building. Pickup trucks were used for sitting. Lawyer friends accused Bearden of making a windfall he wasn’t telling about. Sharon is known to be the most conservative liberal in these parts. Come December he will be saving a bunch when he quits sending money to Texas Tech. That’s where Jim Sharon is attending law school. *****While Judge Pat Clark is home recovering, a lady district judge from Houston, named Judge Dunn, will take his place. Two Judge Dunn’s at the courthouse this week,*****Jon and Lisa Drago now run the Drago True Value Hardware in Bridge City,*****Lester “Buckshot” Winfree was named “Small Businessman of the year” by the Bridge City Chamber and Scored Chapter 521. He owns Winfree Rice and Cattle Company. The son of Lawrence and Gladys Winfree was born June 24, 1939.*****In the 4A baseball playoffs, after LCM lost game 1 at home 5-4, senior left-hander Josh Grey pitched a shutout in game 2 to give the Bears a 6-0 win and another chance in the playoffs.  The Bears dealt the death blow to Carthage’s hopes in game 3 with an 11-5 victory. Grey pitched three scoreless innings. The Bears meet Brenham next in the quarter finals. *****Meanwhile, the Orangefield Bobcats squeezed by Huntington 5-4. Jeff Smith is Bobcat coach. They play powerful Lufkin Hudson next in a winner take all game. Orangefield was District 23-3A champions.

39 Years Ago-1974

Jack King is elected zone chairman of the Lions Club at the district convention in Galveston. *****Wally Fowler, gospel singer, formerly with the Oak Ridge Quartet, visits Orange. He and Roy Dunn spend a day exchanging stories about when they both traveled with Dudley J. LeBlanc’s Hadacol Caravan. Wally was at the height of his career and many of his songs were recorded by other artists. He was the first to bring Hank Williams to Nashville and was responsible for much of Eddie Arnold’s success. Fowler gave Roy an autographed copy of his new album, “Jesus.”*****The McCullums open a music store on short Sixth Street in downtown Orange. *****Plans are all made for the big annual Water Festival to be held next weekend. *****Granny Harper’s birthday was celebrated in style with a big gumbo–35 gallons. The whole gang showed up at Millie’s Harper Valley place in Mauriceville. *****Orange Rainbow Assembly No. 48 installs officers. Miss Alicia Annette Young is installed as Worthy Advisor; DeDe Phillips, Worthy Associate; Kellie Hogg, Charity; Sunny Phillips, Hope; Kim McCauley, Faith; Hostess, Vivian Powell, Theda Ladd, Maxine Williams, Carolyn Calvo and Betty Hinson.*****Coach Arien “Bubba” Moye, WO trainer, is leaving. Coach Glen Green says, “We’ll miss him.”*****Debbie Hawks will wed Duane Johnson on June 1. *****Romona Dillard will say her vows with Roger Percy on May 31. *****Staci and Christy Segura celebrate birthdays together May 26. They are four and one.


A.J. Lemoine, Christina Cunningham, Jerry Jackson, Stacey LaRose, Brian Ousley, Clint Worthy, Kimberlea Worthy, Derek George, Nikki Barron, Nikki Fisette, Darrell Perkins, David Olson, Brad Spooner, Irene Storment, Florence Evans, Rebecca Cartwright, Jeannette Foster, Lauren Brownlie, Macey Joubert, Terry George, Wilda Hart, Rhonda Wilson, Brooke Edwards, Linda Wolfford, Shirley Griffin, Dorothy Slusher, Emily Culpepper, Gene Armand, Joyce Bourdier, Rollie Cardner, Sheila Deason, Claudia Lyon, Janice Prevost, Levastie LeBlanc, Nina Aven, Susan Broussard, Peter Modica Jr., James Baumgardner, John Gifford, Julie Lummus, Kathy Holland, Kayla Hickey, Miranda McClure, Donna Witt, Herman Dupuis, David Lopez, Harold Trantham, Matthew Jagoe, Brittany Yu, Brittany Chalmers, Glenn Fisher, Paige Ousley, Jade Ousley, Brooklyn Goldsmith, Aaron McNeil, Sandra Hoke, Donna Benefield and Donna Rogers.


Our friend Mildred Lemoine, who is Judge Janice’s sister, has been in a Houston hospital since February, nearly four months. Our prayers are with her and we know the family is grateful for all the prayers said for her recovery. *****This Saturday, June 1, from 12 noon to 4 p.m., Todd Landry, at Big Daddy‘s Crawfish, Bessie Heights Road in Bridge City, is having a big customer appreciation day. All proceeds will go to the “Cure Starts Now Foundation.” Come out and join the fun. Live music–boiled crawfish, only $10 with corn and potatoes and a Christian, family atmosphere. Fill up on fun and crawfish for a good cause. *****A few folks celebrating their special day. May 29 marks the birthday of two pretty good ole boys. The eldest first, longtime newsman Glenn Earl, who helped pioneer NBC affiliate television Channel 4, has spent the last few years in radio. Even though he often editorializes you can count on Glenn to get to the bottom of the story. ***Unlike Glenn, this next guy retired while on top of his game. Longtime peace officer, former Orange police chief and former acting city manager, Sam Kittrell, once our “Person of the Year,” is now part time employee, full time chief of Pine Forest. He did me a favor once and I’ll never forget it. Best wishes to you guys. ***May 30 is a very important day in the Dunn family. It’s the day Roy and Phyl’s first grandchild and Mark’s first daughter came along. Happy birthday to Dr. Amber Dunn. ***Also celebrating on this day is longtime friend, Bridge City dentist, Dr. David Olson. The two doctors share their birthday with Wynonna Judd, who turns 49.***May 31, finds Wilda Hart, Ronda Wilson, Florence Evans, Jeannette Foster and Brooke Edwards sharing their birthday with Joe Namath, former New York Jet quarterback, who turns 70. If you remember when he was a NFL star you’ve passed middle age. Clint Eastwood also shares this date and will be 83. ***June 1 is a special day for Linda Wolfford, Shirley Griffin, Rollie Cardner and Claudia Lyon. ***Celebrating on June 2 are Kayla Hickey, Miranda McClure, John Gifford, Julie Lummus, Peter Modica Jr. and Moma Aven.***June 3 finds  Herman Dupuis and Harold Trantham celebrating.***On June 4, Sanda Hoke has another birthday as does Glenn Fisher, Aaron McNeil and Donna Rogers. They share birthdays with Angelina Jolie, who turned 38. Happy birthday and best wishes to all. Please see complete list. *****We met a nice lady a few weeks ago who brought an antique calendar featuring Fred Bailey‘s place on Sabine Lake. I was surprised to learn this beautiful lady, who looks half her age, “Mitge“ Duhon, is Jude Turley‘s aunt.*****A bill to require Texas prosecutors to undergo training to ensure evidence is not withheld in most felony and misdemeanor criminal cases has been sent to Gov. Rick Perry for signing. House Bill 1847 would require that one of the three hours of ethics training that Texas lawyers undergo each year be related to discloser of evidence in all but class C misdemeanor cases. *****Judge Pete Runnels, the local Humana Insurance agent, says if you‘re turning 65 and have questions about Medicare, give him a call at 409-877-1594, 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. He will be glad to go over the program with you. *****Gov. Rick Perry calls a special session for Wednesday to take up redistricting. That should be a heated battle. Meanwhile, a federal court is gearing up to again take up a lawsuit by voting rights groups challenging Republican drawn redistricting maps passed by the legislature in 2011. However, our little part of Texas was shafted back in 2000 and we have taken a backseat to the Houston area in congressional races. Orange County, for the first time, doesn’t have a local state representative. Also Jefferson, Orange and other surrounding counties no longer have a local state senator. I’m not bothered as much about our representatives, national and state, being Democrats or Republicans as much as losing any kind of local control. We might as well not have a congressman for the good Steve Stockman, from Houston, will do for us. Perry and his troops will again do everything to gerrymander and keep Republican control but worse, they want to consecrate congressional power in the Houston, San Antonio, Dallas and Fort Worth areas, leaving rural counties behind like unwanted stepchildren. *****Tony Kanaan, after 12 tries, finally won the Indianapolis 500 and Kevin Harwick won the Coca Cola 600.*****West Orange-Stark freshman Nathan Hayes was elected class president of the student council for sophomore year 2013-14. Nathan will attend State UIL Solo/Ensemble in Austin. Good luck and congrats. *****The Wednesday Lunch Bunch will dine at Novrozsky’s this week and will be at Robert’s next week when Roy celebrates his birthday. Join him and the Bunch, everyone is welcome. No dues, no speeches, just good fellowship.


LaToya Jackson will be 57 on May 29; Melissa Etheridge, 52 and Annette Bening, 55. ***Wynonna Judd will be 49 on May 30. ***Clint Eastwood will be 83 on May 31; Brooke Shields, 48 and Colin Farrell, 37. ***On June 1, Morgan Freeman will be 76; Heidi Klum, 40 and Alanis Morissette, 39. ***Dana Carvey will be 58 on June 2 and Justin Long, 35. ***Angelina Jolie will be 38 on June 4;


Every night right after it got dark Leroy Desomeaux, a bird lover, would go out in da backyard and hoot like an owl, hoping to attract one. After a few days, Leroy’s plan worked. One night an owl, wit a deep voice, started answering him. For a year, every night Leroy an dat owl hooted back and forth to one an utta. Leroy him, even kept a log of dere nightly conversations.

Leroy tought he was on da verge of a breakthrough in interspecies communication wen his wife, Marie, had a chat wit her neighbor Mary Lou. “My husband Leroy him, spends his night calling out to da owls,” Marie said.

“Mais, dat’s odd, so does my husband Sustan. For bout a year, every night he talks to an owl him.”


In this graduation issue we are featuring all five of the schools in our distribution area. We thank all the schools for their assistance. We are also featuring our annual All Orange County Baseball Team and Class 3A All District Softball Team. Congrats to all the athletes.*****The weather experts are telling us to expect a more active hurricane season which begins this Saturday, June 1. No one really knows where a storm will go and where it will land. It depends on where the low pressure draws a storm in. I recall with Rita, the storm was supposed to go to South Texas because we were protected by a high. Without notice the high pressure backed up to Dallas and the low we were left with sucked Rita to our shore. You can’t predict a storm’s landing. On the other hand, the Gulf of Mexico is large, with a lot of targets, if it misses us by 100 miles, there is no damage. Five storms could enter the Gulf and have 3,000 miles to land. We probably have a better than 90 percent chance that a hurricane won’t visit us this summer. Remember, it goes only where the lowest pressure is. *****Twenty-four deaths in Moore Oklahoma last week is 24 deaths too many. Actually, it’s amazing that so many people survived when you see all the damage. I wouldn’t trade our hurricanes for their tornados. One thing I will bet on is that we’re in for a long, extremely hot summer. Outdoor work and activities will be miserable. *****Read us cover to cover. We thank the advertisers who sponsored this special graduation edition. My time is up. I thank you for yours. *****A final warning to all grads, don’t be a fool and try to drive if drinking. Be especially careful. Many young people are injured or lose their lives in celebrations this time each year. Have a great time. Take care and God bless.