GONE BUT NOT FORGOTTEN

 The last few days have brought sad times with the loss of some good people who have left their mark on our community. A dear friend of many years, Roy Stephen Wingate, 89, died Jan. 12. His service will be held Friday at 2 p.m. at Claybar Funeral Home in Orange. A visitation will be held Thursday evening from 5 p.m. to 7 p.m. Roy was one of the most compassionate people I’ve known. He was a giver who always extended a helping hand to those in need. Roy could have been a very wealthy man but he gave away much of his service to help the indigent. He was a good attorney, but even more, he was a great person. Volumes could be written about his good deeds. He and wife, Chrystal took on great responsibilities and saw them to the end. Together, as co-chairmen of the 1976 Bi-centennial, they put on a flawless year of celebrations. Many, in the legal profession, who are still around, Sharon Bearden, Tommy Gunn, who started out with Roy, H.D. Pate, longtime friend,Joe Alford, Steve Carlton, Wayne Peveto, Judge Pat Clark and others will attest to the fact that with Roy principle always came first. Like so many others, I’m proud to have known this special person. Condolences to Chrystal, Stephen and their family. *****We also lost Darby Byrd,71, on Tuesday, Jan. 7. Services were held Jan. 10. Darby gave much to his community through his civic work. He always saw the good in everything. He would greet even a stranger with a smile.*****Many years, in the very early 1970’s, I had the good fortune to met a young couple, Ed and Juanita Smith, and I was impressed with them at the time and my admiration only grew through the years. Reece Edward “Ed” Smith, 71, died Jan. 5. Services were held Jan. 9. Ed had been an IBEW electrician for 35 years, starting in 1966. I was able to visit with him often when he worked for Bubba Hubbard. He and Juanita did a lot of church work and were very involved with the Orange Mardi Gras. They were recently named Grand Marshal. He was a good guy, a friend of many years. Everyone who knew him will miss him.*****Condolences to the family of Sheila Fite Stelly, 52, who passed away Saturday, Jan. 11. Service was held Tuesday, Jan. 14. Born in 1961, she was the daughter ofBill and Jo Fite, people I knew well, along with her grandparents theCunninghams. Sheila was the wife of West Orange Police chief Mike Stelly. She gave much of her time to volunteer work. *** I just wanted to acknowledge the above people who loved our community and gave much of themselves to improve it. Please see obituaries. *****Now I must move on. Please come along, I promise it won’t do you no harm.

 PERRY’S POLITICS TRUMPS GOOD JUDGEMENT

Gov. Rick Perry is looking toward making another run for the GOP nomination. In order to move to the right of fellow Texas Sen. Ted Cruz, Perry has to move more extreme right than extremist Cruz. Perry’s gold ring is to deny Texas citizens a right to Medicaid Expansion, despite the fact that the U.S. government will pay all the cost the first year and 90 percent the following years. Medicaid Expansion would help over two million Texans without health care coverage to get it. The U.S. would return $100 Billion to Texas that has already been paid by Texans. If Perry turns the money down, then our money will go to other states. The federal money would also be a big help to local governments who raise funds from local property taxes for hospitals and indigent care. Taxpayers in Texas will still pay federal taxes but the money will support Medicaid Expansion in other states, not Texas. It just doesn’t make sense to pay taxes to help others when our state is passing up the benefits. It’s absolutely shameful that Gov. Perry would short change the citizens of this state for his possible political gain. The odds are against Perry ever being president of the United States but it doesn’t mean he wouldn’t have great financial benefits. Like all candidates, he gets to keep the millions not used in his campaign to add to his personal wealth.  One issue Perry will run on is that while governor he didn’t raise taxes. Nothing could be further from the truth. Every fee under Perry has tripled. That’s a heavy tax on those who can afford it the least. Refusing to accept $100 billion dollars, strictly for political reasons, will burden Texas taxpayers to do what the Feds are offering to do for nothing. There is no reasonable reason not to take back our own money. The Texas Medical Association, Hospital Association, newspaper editorials, Chamber of Commerce organizations and other Medical organizations have urged Gov. Perry not to be foolish and to accept the Medicaid Expansion. It would not only provide health care but would provide many jobs and be a boost for our hospitals. Unfortunately, Att. Gen. Greg Abbott, wanting to stay to the right of his opponents for governor, now is saying “Me Too,” going along with Perry. Some day, regular people of Texas, will finally say “Enough Already.”

 HOW SLOCUM GOT U.T.’S STRONG 1ST COACHING JOB

Congrats to Coach R.C. Slocum on his latest, most deserving award and recognition. I really enjoyed the in-depth feature story, written by Joe Kazmar last week in the County Record. Kaz, from the old school of sports writers, is most likely one of two most knowledgeable sports writers still around today. A side note that wasn’t in Joe’s story is how R.C. got Charlie Strong, new head coach at the University of Texas, his first coaching job. He even bought his plane ticket to Southern Illinois, allowing Strong to have a 20-minute interview with Coach Roy Dorr.Strong got the job as an assistant. He went on to work for such coaches asLou Holts, Urban Meyer and Ron Zook. He then got the head coaching job at Louisville. Strong’s life story is interesting and fascinating. The boy from Batesville, Ark. Population 248, born out of wedlock, is writing his own history. He now faces a great challenge at Texas as leader of the Longhorns.

TURNING BACK THE HANDS OF TIME

10 Years Ago-2004

Kathy and Daniel Ray’s business, Daniel’s Electric, to be honored at Bridge City Chamber’s “Business of the Year” at the annual Taste of Bridge City celebration, Jan. 20. Sue Bailey will be honored as the “Citizen of the Year.” Terry Steubing will serve as master of ceremonies. *****Congressman Jim Turner has announced he will not be a candidate for reelection. He is considering using the $1.5 million left in his campaign account to run for governor. Turner said that redistricting is the pinnacle of a Republican 30 year march to dominance. The goal is to have one predominate party in Texas. *****Jim Arrons, former Bridge City High School principal lost a long hard battle against cancer. He died Sunday, Jan. 11, in Oklahoma. Service will be held in Vinton on Jan. 15. *****OTHER DEATHS: Michael d. Merritt, Sr., 37, died Jan. 11. He was a native and lifelong resident of Orange. ***W. Earnest Meadows, 63, died Jan. 11. Born in Lufkin, he had lived in Orange 50 years and had retired from Orange Fire Department. ***Dorothy Seiffert, 75, of Orange, died Jan. 8. *****Happy birthday to Colby Choate who turned 7 years old on Jan. 11. *****Former B.C. football star, Johnny Dearing, turns 50. He celebrated with friends at the New Orleans/Cowboy game in Dallas. *****Marjorie Marie ‘Tootsie’ Scales turns 71. *****William Sonnier kills first 8-point buck near Junction Dec. 28. *****The City of Pinehurst is calling an election to allow beer and wine sales in restaurants. Mayor is Ricky Trevino, City Manager is C.R. Nash. *****The Wednesday Lunch Bunch will visit “Mama Red” at Gary’s on IH-10. Always a great meal at Gary’s. Two Bridge City NFL stars are in town after their teams were eliminated from playoffs. Matt Bryant, with the NY Giants and Jason Matthews, with the Tennessee Titans. (Editor’s note: Jason has retired but Matt, who had a great year, is still with the Atlanta Falcons.)

 35 Years Ago-1979

Orange County lost three good men last week. Raymond Hubbard, Gus Foyle and Crip Trahan. *****Last week was the debut of Lynn Hall’sfirst column, “Skinned Knees to Car Keys.”*****TheRichard Newsome’s are the proud parents of William Richard Newsom III. He was born Jan. 1, in Houston. *****Kathleen Cook retires from the Orange Public Library. *****Judy Wyatt recognized as Bridge city “Citizen of the Year.” the award was presented at the 20th annual chamber banquet. Judge Don Burgess made the presentation. *****Cody’s Restaurant holds ribbon cutting. The new restaurant is located at 3130 16th St. in Orange. Steak specials range from $4.50 to $5.25. Owner of Cody’s is BHR Enterprises. Ray Comstock is manager. The building is being leased from Wayne Townsend, owner of Der Wienerschnitzel. The location was formerly the Fish ‘N Chicken. Participating in the ribbon cutting were Orange Mayor Inman and Pete Sterling, Orange chamber ambassador.*****Howard Jarvis “Mr. Proposition 13,” brings crusade to Orange. A great story was written by Betty Jo Spence, about the California tax reformer, for the Opportunity Valley News.*****Tuesday, Jan. 16, the first Republican governor in 100 years takes office. Bill Cements will be working with the Democratic House and Senate. *****Joe and Beverly Williams are taking Pat Lambert to the Super Bowl in Miami as a special birthday gift. Pat celebrates her birthday on Jan. 21. Her sister Mrs. M.E. White, along with the Williamsons sons, Shane and Cole, will also make the party.*****Robyn Lusignan will celebrate her 11th birthday Jan. 21.*****Marty and R.J. Conway will host the monthly gourmet club.*****Pat St. John Danko, formerly of Orange, has again been recognized as being an internationally renowned artist.*****H. Lew Malcolm, formerly of Orange, has been named manager of Economic Development for the Beaumont Chamber.*****The Dallas Cowboy coaches prepare for the Super Bowl game against the Steelers. Coaches are Tom Landry, Gene Stalling, Ernie Stautner, Mike Ditka, Dan Reeves, Jim Myers, Ermal Allen, Jerry Tubbs and Bob Ward. Chuck Noll is the Pittsburgh coach. Roger Staubach is the Cowboy quarterback. Terry Bradshaw is the field general for the Steelers. *****The Philadelphia Phillies baseball team claims to have already covered the additional $800,000 per year coast for the acquisition of Pete Rose. New ticket sales have passed $300,000, and radio revenue has gone up $600,000, both attributed to having Pete Rose in the lineup.

A FEW HAPPENINGS

A party for Wilson Stillwell, 101, will be held Thursday, Jan. 16, from 5 p.m. to 6:30 p.m. at the Fraternal Order of Eagles, 803 N. 28th Street. Pinehurst police chief Fred Hanauer will be the M.C. Everyone is invited to come honor this good man and share his birthday.*****Congratulations to the Bridge City Chamber for another great ‘Taste of the Bayou’ awards banquet. Also, congrats to outgoing chamber president, Brandy Slaughter, and her team for the great strives the chamber has made over the last 21 months. I know these people on the team and Brandy and that group worked tirelessly to build a strong and active chamber. Best wishes go out to new president, Lucy Fields. Lucy is a people person and a doer; she won’t let any grass grow under her feet. Jerry Jones, Bridge City City Manager, was a great choice for ‘Citizen of the Year.” Jerry has been just the right person during the trying times after hurricanes Rita and Ike. The city today is far better off because of his, and the city administration’s, efforts. *****Bridge City Bank was also a good choice to be picked as ‘Business of the Year’, the bank that grew up in our neighborhood. Well deserving also is our friend, Shirley Zimmerman, named ‘Ambassador of the Year.’ She’s everywhere. *****The football championships are all set. AFL pits Tom Brady and the New England Patriots against Payton Manning and the Denver Broncos at home. The game will be played Sunday, 2 p.m. on CBS. *****NFL championship features the San Francisco 49ers at the Seattle Seahawks house, where Earl Thomas and company await them. The game is Sunday, 5:30 p.m. Seismologists say Seahawks fans shook the ground under Seattle’s field during Saturday’s 23-15 defeat of the New Orleans Saints, causing another fan generated earthquake. It happened during a touchdown run by Marshawn Lynch. Three years ago, also in a game against the Saints, the same thing happened. Orange native Earl Thomas had a great day. He also directed the defense on the field. The crowd will be loud Sunday, only Seahawks fans can get tickets. Local folks will be pulling for Earl to go to the super Bowl. *****TheWednesday Lunch Bunch will dine at Novrozsky’s this week and will be back at Robert’s next week for a special gathering. Everyone is welcome. *****A few folks we know celebrating birthdays. On Jan. 15, Tyler Reves, Joy Hughes and Dee Culpepper all celebrate, along with Saints quarterback Drew Brees, who turns 35.***Jan. 16, finds Don Bailey, Gary Dearing, Clayton Gearheart celebrating.***Attorney John Cash “Jack” Smith celebrates on Jan. 17. On the other hand, Jack celebrates every day. He loves the good life. Also on Jan. 17, a nice lady, Gail Meadows, former Pinehurst councilperson, celebrates and Erin Hanks, Pattie’s oldest. They share birthdays with First Lady Michelle Obama, 50 and Kid Rock, 42. This would also have been the late Doug and Regina Harrington’s 33rd wedding anniversary. ***On Jan. 18, pretty Brenda Oliver celebrates and also Bonny Sarver, Dylan Huckebay and Tara Thompson. ***Celebrating on Jan. 19, are Candace Clark, Michael Amsden and Jimmy Whittle. ***On Jan. 20, coach Steve Griffith inches up the peg another year. Small ball don’t slow the game of life down. Others moving up a notch are Melissa Berry, Beth Fisher and Gloria Bertrand. This is also Martin Luther King Day. ***On Jan. 21, Joshua Schamber will turn 21. Also celebrating are David Doucet, Charles Arceneaux and Sarah Bonds. Happy birthday to all. See complete list.

Birthdays This Week

Bill Pryor, Don Thompson, LaDonna Bell, Brennan Broussard, Carson Peet, Joy Hughes, Margaret Cavanaugh, Tyler Reves, Dee Culpepper, Don Bailey, Jon Mott, Joshua Schamber, Gary Dearing, Clayton Gearhart, Joel Meyers, Glenn Oliver, Jerry Ashby, John Green III, Matthew Lee, Milly Arnold, Gail Meadows, Tanner Wilson, Bob Couser, Brenda Oliver, Laverne Walles, Bonny Sarver, Dylan Huckebay, Mary Louise McKee, Misti Jagoe, Tara Thompson, Virginia Sanford, James Crabtree, Candace Clark, Jimmy Whittle, John Michael Foote, Lisa Costilla, Michael Amsden, Brenna Manasco, Melissa Berry, Beth Fisher, Gloria Bertrand, Joy Gilliam, Steve Griffith, Beverly Delahoussaye, Charles Arceneaux, Sarah Bonds, Millagro Foster and David Doucet.

CAJUN STORY OF THE WEEK

After a hard freeze, wen da sun come out, da fish dem really bite at da Whiskey Bay bridge. Doctor Babineaux him, really wanted to go fishing Friday so he axe his hired hand “Pooldo” if he would watch da clinic for a few hours and take care of da patients. If an emergency came up, he was to call Doctor Darby.  Pooldo say, “Yes sir, Doc.”  Late Friday afternoon, wen Dr. Babineaux return, he axe Polldo “How did it go?” Pooldo say, “Doc, I took care of tree patients me. Da first one had a headache so I gave him a Tylenol.” “Good,” said da Doc, “And da second one?” Pooldo say, “His stomach it was burning so I gave him some Maalox.” “Very good,” said da Doc. “Wat bout da turd one?” Pooldo say, “Doc, I was sitting here and suddenly da door flies open, a women rush in and she undress herself plum, take everyting off and lies down on dat table dere and shouts, “Help me! I ain’t seen a man in over two years!” “Lordy, Lordy, Pooldo, wat did you do hanh?” axe da Doc. “Mais Doc, I put some drops in her eyes me.”

C’EST TOUT

What is a big surprise to me is how many citizens I’ve come in contact with that don’t really know who is running for which political office. The primaries are just six weeks away and it just doesn’t seem to be that much interest. Folks see signs around the area but don’t seem to know what office they are seeking or how many are in the race. I don’t recall it being this strange before. It’s time to crank it up or it will be a lower than usual turn out. We need to do more to get the message out. We reach more voters in the county than any other media. Maybe we’re like everyone else, not realizing how soon the election is. I bet not one in 20 can name who is running for U.S. Congress. *****Meanwhile, Christie’s‘Bridge Over Troubled Waters’ hits the nation’s 24-hour news cycle. What will get him in the end is the drip, drip, every day a little more, until it cuts into the rock. If not Christie who? Christie was the only candidate that the polls show was competitive against Hillary Clinton. That leaves Rand Paul, Ted Cruz, Marco Rubio, Rick Perry, etc. All of them will now try to leapfrog over Christie. The most powerful GOP leader, Roger Ailes, CEO Fox News, will call that shot. If you notice, Fox News is protecting Christie and bringing up the IRS scandal and Benghazi to divert from the bridge scandal. A new book comes out today on Ailes. I can’t wait to read it.*****Well, I better get out of here but first, let me remind you that if you’re looking for a good pre-owned car or truck, check out the Harmon boys. See their ad in this publication. A little money down and they will tote the note. Their low overhead allows them to pass the saving on to the customer. Fresh new inventory. Come by and check them out before you buy.***** Thanks for your time, mine is up. Check out our family of advertisers, they bring you this paper, free of charge, each week. Take care and God bless.