Even though my own father has long departed, crossed over to a place that awaits us all, I still hold some fond memories made a longtime ago. That said, I have found myself blessed through the years to have known and been befriended by salt of the earth men who either took me under their wing or looked out for my best interest, some older, some my age and others younger. Most are dads to their own children yet we have a brotherhood that bonds us. We know it without saying. It’s father-like, looking out for our flock. The special men we consider as having our back, who you know will always be there. You don’t wonder where they stand, you know. I’ve shared many throughout the years. On this Father’s Day, I’ll give thanks for being so blessed as to have a handful of special guys to ride down this journey with. They know who they are and they know where I stand when it’s time to saddle up. It goes without saying that’s my thanks this Father’s Day. I hope your life is so blessed, not only as a dad but also sharing those special father-like friendships. *****I’d best be going. I have a long way to go. I see Miss Pearl has sent in her Father’s Day poem. I look forward to reading it. Judge Janice remembered her dad in a special way. How thoughtful. Come along, I promise it won’t do you no harm.


Over the years we quoted Mattie Dellinger in this column. Miss Mattie wrote a weekly column for the Shelby County Light and Champion that was very similar to this Creaux’s Nest column. Mattie wrote her May 24 column that ran in “The Light” and four days later, on May 28, Mattie passed away peacefully at her home at age 101. For many years, she constantly provided the people of Shelby County with an abundance of unique stories of the past and her own personal observations. Not everyone agreed with her but she always had the facts to back up her opinions. Mattie’s voice, in Shelby County, spanned several decades. Many say her writings impacted not only East Texas and the state but also nationwide. She was a 98 pound lady, opinionated and smart, who over a lifetime built up quite an archive of newspaper articles, special reports and personal letters. Her entire life was spent in communication. She worked for years for the Houston Chronicle, Houston Post, Beaumont Enterprise, Shreveport Time and the Associated Press. She worked in radio several years and covered news and anchored for two television stations. Mattie’s “Party Line” radio show came on at 4 p.m., a must tune in to every day. Through the years Mattie received many special awards besides those for her writings but most important to her were her friendships. Mattie had the opportunity to meet and befriend many notable figures, Willie Nelson was one who when close by would stop by to visit her. In fact, Willie was an honorary pall bearer at her June 1, funeral. It’s said that Mattie made knowables out of local folks by publicizing them so much that everyone in Center knew them when they went downtown.

Mattie and her “Party Line” column is already missed in East Texas. Mattie Imelda McLendon Dellinger, 1911-2013 was born in Center, Texas on Oct. 1. She is survived by one daughter, grandchildren, great and great-great grandchildren. Special thanks to Millard “Neighbor Cox” Cox, the boy from Joaquin, who for many years has provided me with Mattie’s columns. I was a true fan. She was one of a kind. I remember her Sunday columns many years ago in the Houston papers. May she rest in peace.


7 Years Ago-2006

The Bridge City Cardinal baseball team ended a 33-6 season in the UIL conference 3A state baseball tournament in the semi-final round against Texarkana Liberty.-Eylan, 7-3. The Cardinals claimed the Region III championship for a second straight year. The loss to Texarkana came on the 16th birthday of sophomore catcher, Casey Jackson. Junior, Johnny Dishon, was a two-time veteran of the state championship tournament. Senior, A.J. Hecker, was trying to decide if he would play baseball for Lamar or be a place kicker for Stephen F. Austin. Cody Sparks is headed to Tulane to be a Division I defensive end. Pitcher, Broc Haymon, will join former teammates Derek Blacksher and Hunter Hayes at McNeese. Ace pitcher, Kevin Angelle, called a “Phenomenon” is weighing a pro contract with the Texas Rangers or except a full ride at Texas A&M. In his senior year he struck out 169 batters. Phillip Meeks and Jeff Stringer relieved Angelle in the Texarkana loss. Coach Bryant, in his third year at Bridge City has a 93-17 record and two trips to Round Rock state championship games. The Record website has posted 230 photos for sale. All proceeds will be donated to the Booster Club. By the way, Texarkana Liberty-Eylan was the third team out of their district. Bridge City was number one in the state all season. Texarkana never was ranked in the top 20. This Cinderella team beat Falfurrias, 2-1 to win the state championship. If B.C. and Texarkana would have played ten games, B.C. would have won nine. They were that much better at every position. You can’t beat a Cinderella team. (Editor’s note: I believe this Cardinal team and last year’s team were two of the best, all time Bridge City teams, however there have been so many great players through the years.)*****Bridge City Police Chief Steve Faircloth has overcome many difficulties but losing his wife Dorothy, age 55, on June 8, is the hardest blow yet. Services were held June 12. *****Father Jim McClintock, pastor at St. Henry Catholic Church, celebrates 20 years in the priesthood. He was ordained at St. Anthony, in Beaumont. A reception was held June 11 at St. Henry’s Activities Building. *****Services were held June 4 for James A. “Jim” Stelly, 79, at Claybar Funeral Home. Officiating was the Rev. Larry David, DeaconStelly had a long history of community service in Orange County. *****Thomas “Tommy” Broussard, 89, died June 9. A resident of Orangefield, he was an oilfield pumper for Cormier Well Service most of his life.

37 Years Ago-1976

Carl Parker is elected state senator over Chester Slay. *****Ed Parker elected sheriff over Sheriff Buck Patillo. *****Arthur Simpson elected county commissioner of Precinct 1. *****The H.D. Pates are touring the Big Bend country. *****John Martin elected Lion’s Club president. *****Roy, Phyllis and Karen Dunn are attending the Rotary International convention in New Orleans this week. They went a week early. Dennis Hall presented Roy with a new, hand engraved smoking pipe for the trip. *****Ralph Smith, Paul Eason and Tim Lieby went deep sea fishing last week. They caught a lot of fish, also bad sunburn and enough seasickness to last them all year. *****New Boilermaker’s Hall dedication and ribbon cutting held. Officers present were Dewey “Teddy Bear” Cox, business manager; B.E. Herford, president of Local 587; Harold Bowie, International president. *****The Bridge City and Orangefield communities to build center as Bi-centennial project. Estimated cost is $400,000. W.T. Oliver is campaign chairman; captains are Paul Cormier, Jimmy Hanson, Ralph Smith, Alvin Keown, Bernis Bobbit and Faye Linscomb. Officers of the non-profit organization are Bobby Smitherman, president; Cormier, vice-president; and Sandy Parkhurst, secretary. Roy Dunn is publicity chairman.*****Sharon Bearden has issued an in-office memo stating that none of the secretaries will be allowed to write a book about office happenings.*****To head in different directions starting this week are Betty and Joe Kazmar and Anne and Ernest McCollum.*****The Triangle Savings and Loan of Bridge City holds ground breaking. Roy Ingram is the new manager. *****Bill Clark landed a job with NBC Channel 4, in the electronic background. His friends predict he won’t be there long. He can’t stay away from radio. *****Jean and Ron Moreau attend their styling classes in Houston. The instructor was Vidal Sassoon, who is world renown. *****J.E. (June) Patillo was elected district clerk in 1912 and served six years. In 1918, he was elected tax assessor collector and served 12 years. After being in private business, in 1969 he became a deputy sheriff bailiff of the grand jury and is still serving in 1976.


Candice Steele, Magdalene Bryant, Jeanette Hubert, Frances Ragsdale, Jesse Walles, Pam Williams, Brook Doss, Caitlyn Villanoueva, Elizabeth Tran, Kaaren Kline, Sidney White, Ryan Kelly, Shawna Gauthier, Steven Crabtree, Desia Davis, Duane Anthony, Susan Fischer, Tamny Droddy, Selita Ernst, Carley Swenson, Sylvia Galbreath, Ben Perry, Betty Jean Lonadier, Brandon Duhon, Brandy Aldridge, Adam Dupuis, David Cardner, Charlie Burnaman, Faye Sherwood, Ryan Richard, Sherri Fruge, Tina Romero, Alex Eby, Carol Hall, Denise Vickers, Sharon Fisher, Beverly Perry, Elton Holmes, Christian Louvier, Jennifer Harrison, Leigh Ann Wilson, Ruby Bell, Alex Brent, Justin Johnson, Nathan Dean, Andrew Riedel, Belinda Welch, Marilyn Reeves, Mary Alice Hartfield, Janice Rabin, Nancy Haworth, Krystal Leonard, Shelby Turbeville, Vern Campbell, Amber King, Kyna White, Brandy Slaughter and Mary Stewart.


What a few natives are up to: Dist. Judge Buddie Hahn‘s wife, Carol, just returned from an 18 day trip to Morocco. She traveled with the Oats group who arranged for 15 travelers to experience Morocco first hand. Carol spent a night in a luxurious tent in the Sahara Desert and even rode a camel. That was horrifying she says. The Judge enjoyed 18 days of batching. *****Dist. Judge Dennis Powell and Connie just returned from a short romantic get away to a Louisiana plantation bed and breakfast. They won‘t celebrate their 32nd anniversary until October but to stay in good graces the Judge treats wife Connie to special little trips. ***Meanwhile, Judge Troy Johnson and his court-coordination, Dianna Edwards, share June wedding anniversaries. Stephen and Dianna celebrated 17 years last week, June 7. Judge Johnson and Veronica will celebrate 25 years on June 18. Surely the Judge is planning something special for the big one.*****Our longtime friend Essie Bellfield, former Orange mayor and now a councilperson, says she wants to praise and thank the two women and man who helped her last Saturday at Wal-Mart. She didn‘t get their names but wants them to know how grateful she is for their concern. *****Our district clerk, Vickie Edgerly rescued a Rhodesian Ridgeback puppy that was dumped in her neighborhood, starving and literally skin and bones. With vet care and Vickie‘s love, the puppy, named Bella, has a good home. Ridgebacks are good, loyal dogs. Mark has raised many and over the years has brought them to the office while working. In fact, “Raz” still hangs out here from time to time. *****Meanwhile, our county clerk, Karen Jo Vance, is living “Skeeter” free at her Bridge City home. She called Cindy, at Pestco, and they took care of the problem. *****Our prayers go out to a few of our friends who are battling illness. The latest we heard, Cimron Campbell, is due to start treatments. ***Jerry Wimberly was back in hospital last week. *** Also, our friend Don Harmon has completed his treatments for now and is working on getting his strength back. Please put these great guys on your pray list. Penny’s daughter Janet LeLeux will be having eye surgery soon on June 26. She was driving one day and suddenly started seeing double. They put her in a special lens like the one Hillary Clinton was perscribed after her fall. Both of Janet’s eyes will be operated on. They are fundraising to come up with the $4,000 deductible that has to be paid upfront. If anybody can help out there is a Janet LeLeux Benefit account set up at any of the Firestone Credit Unions.*****The Wednesday Lunch Bunch had a great gathering at Robert‘s last week. A large bunch showed up and everyone enjoyed Donna Scales’ famous Almond Joy cake. A lot of fellowship. Judge Thibodeaux drew the lucky chair. This week the Bunch dines at Novrozsky‘s and back to Robert‘s next. *****A few folks celebrating their special day. First a belated happy birthday wish to Judge Mandy Rogers, who turned 48 Tuesday, June 11, and looks great. ***Also belated wishes to Stacy Webb Hebert, her co-workers in the County Clerks office gave her a 40th birthday party. ***Belated happy anniversary to Rosalie and Joe Romano, celebrating 57 years.***Lyndia and T.W. Permenter celebrated their only great grandchild Rafi Latiolais’ second birthday on Monday, June 10. ***On June 12, Debby’s hubby, Curtis Hemington, turns 44. I’m sure Debby has something special planned.***Also on June 12, Jessie Walles, Pam Williams, Magdalene Bryant and Kaaren Kline celebrate.***OnJune 13, Shawna Gauthier, Tammy Droddy and Susan Fisher have their big day.***Celebrating June 14 are Carley Swenson, Brandon Duhon and Brandy Aldridge.***Also happy anniversary to Peggy and David Claybar.***June 14 is “Flag Day,” born in Philadelphia in 1989.***June 15 is the birthday of a special guy, Adam Dupuis, Ken and Nancy’s special child.***Also celebrating on June 15 are David Cardner, Sharon Fisher, Denise Vickers, Carol Hall, Sherri Fruge and Faye Sherwood.***On June 16, would have been our friend King Dunn’s birthday. We miss him. ***Celebrating June 16 is our longtime friend, cancer survivor Beverly Perry. I bet every birthday to her has special meaning. Keep on keeping on Bev. ***June 17 is a special day for one of our special people, Mary Alice Cole Hartfield, who is a year older. She get sweeter with age. ***Also celebrating is Andrew Riedel, Belinda Welch and Marilyn Reeves. ***June 18 is a special day for Brandy Slaughter. The David Self employee is involved in many community civic projects as well as being Bridge City Chamber president. ***Also celebrating on June 18 is Mary Stewart, Amber King and Nancy Haworth. Happy birthday to all. Please see complete list.*****Caleb Kellogg, who played baseball this season at the University of Louisiana at Lafayette, was drafted in the 17th round by the Baltimore Orioles. He is a teammate of Matt Hicks. Area fans will remember Caleb when he played his junior year at Bridge City where he and Matt were also teammates. He earned All District and was ranked the 30th Best Player in Texas. He moved back to DeQuincy where he finished 9-1 on the mound, with a .407 batting average and was First Team All Stater in football. He had 44 receptions for 972 yards and 15 touchdowns. Talk is if Matt has another good year with the Cajuns, he will be drafted as a reliever. *****Now here’s a whopper: Only in Texas: Last week a jury, in Bexar County, acquitted a man who killed an escort for not having sex with him. The jury found he was justified since he was trying to get his $150 back. Texas law allows citizens to use deadly force to prevent theft of property. Thirty-year-old Ezekiel Gilbert shot 23-year-old Lenora Fargo in the neck when she attempted to leave. She was paralyzed and died seven months later. Petty theft in Texas gets a life penalty but a guy with a gun in one hand and his penis in the other goes free for causing the death of a young woman. It’s the law of the gun in Texas.


Mary Margaret Thibodeaux, a nice, calm, very respectable lady went into Landry’s Drug Store and axe for Mr. Landry, da pharmacist. She look him straight in his eyes and said, “I would like to buy some cyanide me.”

Landry axe, “Why in da world, Ms. Thibodaux, you need cyanide, hanh?”

“I need to poison my husband Joe, me, ” said Mary Margaret.

Da pharmacist’s eye got big, big and he said, “Lord, Lord, Ms. Thibodaux, have mercy.” “I can’t give you no cyanide to kill you husband, dat’s against da law, dey would trow both of us in jail and me, I’ll lose my license.” “I can’t let you have no cyanide.”

Mrs. Thibodeaux reach into her purse and pull out a picture wat show her husband in bed with Agnes, da pharmacist Landry’s wife.

Landry him, he look at dat picture a long time him, den he turn to Mrs. Thibodeaux, “Well, now dats different, you didn’t told me you had a prescription.”


A lot is being made these days about top secret government surveillance programs. The revelations shouldn’t have come as a surprise. Forty years ago, I wrote an article predicting this day would come. Of course, at the time I didn’t envision online privacy invasion. I wrote about how Big Brother would someday be able to track all Americans. I was referring to Social Security numbers, requested on most transactions. I fought it for a couple years by making up seven numbers, any number but soon that didn’t work. I had to give in and conform but I knew we were coming into the age of all being tracked by the government. Next came the Oklahoma bombing, the government asked us to spy on our neighbors, domestic surveillance. Other measures were put into place also. Then came 9-11 and Osama bin Ladin, everything changed. With the support of the Congress and 60 percent approval by the American people the Patriot Act was born. Ninty-eight senators and an overwhelming majority of congress approved the right of the government, the National Security Agency, to track American’s phone calls and access vast amounts of data from online sources. These actions are not the making of the Republicans or Democrats, it was a bi-partisan action bent on our national security first. It’s not as bad as it appears. Calls are not monitored unless there is suspicion of possible terrorists acts. A new poll Monday shows 58 percent of Americans approve of the measures to keep our country safe. Forty years ago, when I wrote Big Brother, the big deal was wire tapping, which had its pros and cons. Today, the debate centers on Edward Snowden, a NSA employee, who exposed two sweeping U.S. online surveillance programs.  Some say he should be tried for treason, while others call him a hero for exposing a program that was fully approved by all three branches of government. Hero, traitor or something in between, what do you think? It’s a sure bet “Big Brother” is here to stay. *****Thanks for your time; mine is up. I think about Miss Mattie doing this kind of work at 101, only four days before she died. This is hard work. If you don’t think so try writing 3,000 words on various subjects. Take care and God bless.