The Mustangs of West Orange-Stark have played almost flawlessly over the last couple of games. Coach Thompson and his coaches came up with just the right game plan and the youngsters executed it. The boys stayed focused and didn’t commit the errors that had haunted them in the past. If the Mustangs can continue to avoid the foolish penalties and turnovers they will prove they can play with anyone. The on-the-field coaching by the staff throughout both games was very impressive. They made just the right calls and adjustments that were called for. Filling in for injured players by the younger boys has also been impressive. With their backup players, the Mustangs haven’t missed a beat. The Mustangs meet Sinton in the semi-finals Friday at Rosenberg. If the Mustangs play like they have in the last two games it’s a good bet they will be playing for the state championship. Special thanks to Mari Elen Jacobs who has done a great job covering the Mustangs, both in writing and photos, throughout the season. We look forward to her next two reports. First let’s put it on Sinton and then go meet the last challenger. *****Before I move on, let me correct an error in last week’s column. On a piece I did on Pearl Harbor the date read Dec. 7, 1943. How those things happen I don’t know but the correct date is Dec. 7, 1941. Anyway now that the record is straight I must move on. Plenty to do in a short time. I would be proud if you came along. I promise it won’t do you no harm.


We were sorry to learn of the death of Jerry Wilson, 71, who passed away Dec. 2. He was one of the unique characters that we’ve known down this road of life. Jerry upset many apple carts and didn’t care whose cart is was. He had the nerve to express his convictions publicly, different than those who would go behind your back in the dark of the night. Jerry was always above board. Radical in his beliefs, over the years we often clashed, but in the latter days came to understand each other. We decided neither was going to convince the other so we pooled our knowledge of what we agreed on. Jerry had more nerve than Bob Steele, a tough movie cowboy in my childhood; he didn’t back away for any man and would fight a buzz saw. He was a colorful guy and you may not always have liked the paint he used but had to admire that he wasn’t a phony. He was a Republican long before it was cool. He ran for County Commissioner as a Republican long before people voted for the Party instead of the candidate. He nearly pulled off an upset as the only local Republican candidate on the ballot. He would approach anyone, tell them his name, no one was a stranger to Jerry Wilson. He was often considered acting like a fool but he was no dummy, extreme mostly but also very wise. His actions often meant to provoke but he knew what he was doing. It worked. I can attest to that. You either liked Jerry are you didn’t. It didn’t seem to matter to him which you chose. Jerry did a lot of good in civic matters while rowing his own boat. Many of us will never forget how our paths crossed. I’ll never forget him as being unique, stubborn, honest and just a little off center from the rest of us. To his wife Judie, the children and their families, we send our sincere condolences. May he rest in peace. Where ever he’s at he will try to convert the place to the GOP. Please see obit.


10 Years Ago-2004

LSC-O to graduate 109 on Dec. 17. Troy Johnson, assistant district attorney, a native of Orange and graduate of West Orange-Stark, will be the guest speaker at commencement ceremonies. (Editor’s note: Today Johnson is County Court at Law Judge.)*****The Bridge City Rotary Club, formed in 1974, is preparing to celebrate its 30th anniversary. The club chartered with 25 members. Gerald Pesson was first president, Roy Dunn first recipient of the Paul Harris award. The dinner will be held Dec. 17, at the Bridge City Community Center. Charter members were Dr. David Olson, Bill Nickum, Roy Dunn, Dr. Joe Majors, Jerry Pesson, Doug Harrington, H.D. Pate, Butch Lusignan, Jimmy Hanson, Dr. Carlyle Dotson, Joe Fields, Louis Linder, Barry Weisman, Neil Bond, Hershel Mulligan, Bill Weisman, Tim Leiby, Don Castille, Paul Eason, Rev. Ed Robinson, Bubba Hubbard, Bobby Smitherman, Don Cole, Wilson Roberts and Gene Guillotte. (Editor’s note: I count 10 of those young members that have died since the club was charted 40 years ago. The Bridge City Rotary Club is still very active and meets each Thursday at noon.)*****BCISD is in search of a new superintendent. Sam Lucia, outgoing superintendent’s last day is Friday, Dec. 17. Asst. Joe Chenella has been named as the interim superintendent. Chenella says he does not want to move up to the position full time but is willing to serve as interim until someone is hired. Chenella said Bill Ortego has been hired by the school board as search consultant to find a new superintendent. Feb. 21, 2005 is the date set to fill the position. *****Junior Matt Leinard wins Heisman Trophy. Adrian Peterson, freshman, was chosen #2; Jason White, last year’s winner, came in #3; Utah quarterback Alex Smith, #4 and Reggie Bush,USC teammate of Leinard, was #5.*****Kirk and Shirley Roccaforte were in a motorcycle accident which sent Shirley to the hospital. She underwent surgery on her hand and suffered a broken leg. Kirk was banged up and bruised but we understand he is alright. *****Woody Carter turns 6-years-old Dec. 15. He shares birthdays with grandmother Patsy Carter.*****GONE BUT NOT FORGOTTEN: Jack Douglas “Jackie” Harmon, 75, passed away Dec. 9, at Memorial Herman Hospital in Houston. He was born in Orange March 13, 1929, to a pioneer Orange family. Ovie and Rosalie Harmon were his parents. At age 16, Jackie started in the used car business and later owned Harmon Chrysler dealership. He and his brothers, Corky and Don, purchased the Chevrolet dealership in 1969. He served as president for 20 years. He was preceded in death by son Rocky Lynn Harmon. Survivors are his wife of 57 years Jerry Nell, siblings Carlton, Don and Tom, sisters Janie Holton and Cynthia Fisher, children Sherry, Tim and Michael Clay Harmon.***Robert Bucklin, 64, Bridge City councilman, died Dec. 13. Arrangements are pending at Claybar Funeral Home in Orange.***Nelry M. Prince, 80, of Orangefield died Dec. 8.***Olga Balodis, 100,of Orange died Dec. 7.***Willie Ann Tinsley, 92, of Orange, died Dec. 10.***Pat Snyder, 52, of Orange, died Dec. 7.***Clarence A. Folsom, 77, of Mauriceville, died Dec. 10.***Heather Marie Lonidier Sizemore, 32, of Orange, died Dec. 7, in an auto accident.*****Beverly Frederick was honored for 25 years of service to Orange Savings Bank.*****Mark Dunn writes feature story on Orangefield Oil pioneer Paul Cormier and the boom-town era celebrated in Cormier’s museum collection. The museum is scheduled to open in January. An oilfield jail house, turn of the century saloon and oilfield boarding house are just a start of what will be on display. Cormier, 85, has collected historic items of the 20th century oilfield establishments that will fill twin 60X180 buildings. 

35 Years Ago-1979

Keeping the Cajun heritage alive and sharing it with newcomers to the area, W.T. “Boss Cajun” Oliver embarks on second Gros Boucherri. The Boucherri was a gathering of Cajun families in Louisiana to butcher and share their hogs. It’s a traditional winter event because, before the days of refrigeration, pork would spoil quickly. Cajuns never wasted anything edible. From pork they got cracklins and shortening. Besides cooking, the shortening was used to preserve pork meat in a jar by pouring it over the meat. As long as the air didn’t hit it, the meat would congeal and not spoil. Among the guests were new incoming Orange Chamber president Harmon Beauchamp and wife Mary, Lawrence and Ethel Foux, Bob Boudreaux, G.C. Fells, Ann Oliver was chief hostess. Other helpers and eaters were Ann Lieby, Bill and Martha Hughes, Roy and Phyllis Dunn and Carolyn and Frank Riddick. Out-of-towners were Jack Pevin and Bill Minert of Dallas, Bob Anderson, of Ohio and Van Grady from Mississippi. Two hundred and fifty guests attended Oliver’s hog killing and feast which was a big success.*****On Jan. 1, at the stroke of midnight, pretty Vicki Drake Curtis will become Mrs. Frank Brown. By the way, they are still married and living in Kansas. *****John Edgerly broke a bone in his foot at basketball practice, knocking him out for the season.*****Dedication of a historical marker and plaque for Claiborne West Park was held last Saturday at the soon-to-be-open park on Cow Bayou off of IH-10.*****Al Barbre is basketball coach at Bridge City. The leading scorer is David Ess. He also leads in rebounds. *****A few of the students on the Bridge City principle’s honor roll in the 12th grade: Billy Bryant, Louis Garriga, Darrell Gurney, Barbara Hryhorchuk, Shelly Pate and Paul Zoch; 10th grade,Georgia Fleming, Brenda Berry and Fred Zoch; 9th grade, Frank Angelle, Cheryl Pesson and Tammie Waddell. *****Tony Dorsett, of the Dallas Cowboys, became only the second NFL running back to rush for over 1,000 yards in each of his first three seasons. The other was John Brockington, of Green Bay. Dorsett has lost only one fumble in over 200 carries. *****The lovely Inez Hearne celebrates another birthday this week. Louis Dugas will celebrate on Dec. 12., Diane Prince on the Dec. 14, Todd Murdock turns 16 on Dec. 15.***** Former sheriff Chester Holts and Iva will celebrate 52 years of marriage on Dec. 19. R.J. and Marty Conway celebrate on Dec. 12, Betty and Corky Harmon celebrate their special day on Dec. 14.*****This week, Carl Thibodeaux and his crew will be moving the West Orange Pharmacy to a nice, new building next to the office of Dr. Jones.


Todd “Big Daddy” Landry tells us it’s going to be a good year for crawfish. Samplings have been running very high counts. That’s good news for all of us Cajuns and those folks who would like to be. Right now, Big Daddy’s is selling crawfish tail meat. Nice, large, fat, already clean tails ready for holiday cooking. See ad in this publication and call to place your order. These crawfish are local, home-grown crawfish, not dried out China ones.*****A big New Year’s Eve shindig will be held at the V.F.W. in Orange, featuring G.G. Shinn, Jivin Gene and friends. It’s going to be one heck of a big party. See advertisement in this publication for more information.  Make your reservations now. *****We ran into Lamar “Co-Co” Hardin last week. His daughter had brought him to Robert’s to feed his face. The old guy is looking good. Might-near 90 years ago, Co-Co was born on the Vermillion River at Abbeville, in a houseboat made out of a barge. The barge made its way to Orange where they lived on the Sabine River. They were docked at Market St. until they moved into a house. *****We were sorry to hear about the death of Jim Austin, who was a former Orange Olds/Cadillac dealer for many years. He was a prince of a guy. *****We are glad to report that Don Harmon has been moved to Baptist Beaumont rehab unit. He’s improved but still deep in the woods. Our prayers are with him.*****A few folks we know celebrating their special day: On Dec. 10, our longtime friend who we haven’t seen in way too long, David Claybar celebrates. David has always been one of my favorite people and his wife Peggy is a jewel.***Also celebrating on Dec. 10 are Cindy Briggs and Michelle Watson. They share birthdays with celebrity chef Bobby Flay, 49 and actress Susan Dey, 61, and Raven Symone, 28.*****Dec. 11, finds the “First Lady” of Starks Lucy Hanks celebrating another one, also Leslie Lyons, Rob Clark and Kent Sarver. They join Secretary of State John Kerry, 70, actress Rita Moreno, 82, Jermaine Jackson, 59 and Mo’Nique, 46.*****On Dec. 12, Shelby Hebert, Daniel Bates, Scott Deroune and Joel Fruge celebrate. They join Bob “The Price is Right” Barker, 90 and singer Dionne Warwick, 73. *****Kristy Kidwell, Hazel Smith and Dennis Lee all celebrate on Dec. 13. They join singer Taylor Swift, 24 and Alabama’s Randy Owen, 64.*****On Dec. 14, CPA Keri Michutka, Kandy Sartin, Danny Blacksher, Diane Bertrand and Hannah Carpenter all celebrate. They join actress Patty Duke, 67 and Astros’ Craig Biggio, 48 in celebrating. This would also have been our late friend Doug Harrington’s birthday. *** Dec. 14 is also Betty and Corky Harmon’s 58th wedding anniversary. *****On Dec. 15, the “First Lady” of Bridge City Shirley Roccaforte celebrates. Also having a birthday are Maac Hughes, Amanda Webb, Ken Pittman, Imogene Bland and Melanie Richter. This would also have been former Record editor Robert Hankins’ birthday. They join actor Don Johnson, 64 and Tim Conway, 80.*****On Dec. 16, our buddy James Brabham celebrates as does a special gal Elizabeth Uzzle, also Kitty Martin, Carol Allen and Michelle Gephart. They join ZZ Top’s Billy Gibbons, 64, actor Benjamin Bratt, 50 and Liv Ullmann, 75.*****We were sorry to hear that Margaret Louviere was admitted to the hospital for a few days after her 97th birthday Nov. 29. We wish her a speedy recovery. *****It was time to release the CIA torturing report and put that behind us. Push the reset button. Water boarding and other torture of captives is not who we are as a country. That bad period was in the Bush Administration, when Dick Cheney, Don Rumsfeld and Scooter Libby were running the torture chamber. The world needs to know the United States will not allow it. President Obama ended it when he came into office. *****Diesel Durkin is home after a little over a year in a special care facility. He will still need special care but thank God he’s home for the Christmas Holidays. *****Sen. Ted Cruz is at it again. He’s trying to use the Congress that he controls, to shut the government down. He’s a bad apple who has no influence with his Senate colleges. He is Sen. Joe McCarthy reincarnated. On Dec. 2, 1954, the US Senate passed a resolution condemning Joseph R. McCarthy, saying, “He had acted to senatorial ethics and tended to bring the Senate into dishonor and dispute.” Cruz has been very much as bad and the Senate should handle it. *****Norris Brandon is not a happy camper after someone jumped the back fence and stole his entire award winning persimmon crop. Norris raises large, beautiful persimmons, gives them special care year round and passes the fruit out to his friends..*****Carlos Vasek, TCU’s biggest fan ,is not happy that TCU was dropped out of the final four. To put salt in the wound, they dropped TCU to sixth place behind Baylor.*****The Wednesday Lunch Bunch will dine at Novrozsky’s this week and at Robert’s next week for the last gathering of the year. Come out and enjoy the fellowship. Everyone is always welcome. *****Don’t forget the big community pep rally Thursday, 6 p.m. at the West Orange-Stark High School gym. Let’s give the Mustangs a big send off for Friday’s game against Sinton, 7 p.m at Guy K. Traylor Stadium in Rosenberg.


Michelle Watson, Shelly Motts, Bonnie Hopperton, Sean Ureta, David Claybar, Monica Placette, Cindy Briggs, Karri Piccone, Jo Lynn Mott, Kent Sarver, Kristine Cortez, Jim Sands, Cody Caples, Terry Fall, Leslie Lyons, Cody Caples, Tara Fountain, Nathan Vogt, Rob Clark, Shelby Hebert, Zackery Anderson, Arielle Foster, Joel Fruge, Scott Derouen, Bonnie Albright, Daniel Bate, Melissa Poydence, Hazel Smith, Melinda Swares, Kristy Kidwell, Dennis Lee, Hailey Tally, Jenny Duncan, Keri Michutka, Ronald Escamilla, Kandy Sartin, Tim Fix, Danny Blacksher, Danny Prosperie, Dorothy Jenkins, Hannah Carpenter, Ken Pittman, Amanda Webb, Linda Easley, Robert Hankins, Imogene Bland, Jeff Harrington, Ken Pittman, Kenneth Pittman, Maac Hughes, Melanie Richter, Shirley Roccaforte, Alex Harner, Belinda Broom, Brent Burris, Craig Reynolds, Dale Armand, Kitty Martin, James Brabham, Michelle Gephart, Bobby Adaway, Carol Allen, Elizabeth Uzzle, Michael Terry and Natalie Nimitz.


Asa Comeaux’s boy Arnold was marrying Oris Boudreaux’s daughter Evalyn. On da day of da wedding Asa took his boy Arnold aside and tole him, “Wen you get back from you honeymoon, you got to lay down some rules. Let you wife know dat da man is da boss him, and he can do wat he wants to, and for her not to forget dat,you understand wat you Papa is telling you?”

Arnold, him, he answer, “Yes sir, I’ll do dat, me.”

Wen him and his wife got home from dere honeymoon at Holly Beach, Arnold say to his wife, “Look here, I got to lay down some rules rat now, me. I’ll be home wen I want, at wat time I want, and I don’t expect any hassle from you. Da man is da boss, him. Wen I get home I expect a good meal to be on da table, unless I tell you I won’t be home for supper. I’ll go hunting, fishing, boozing and card playing wen I want wit my good buddies and you better not give me a hard time bout it. Dose are my rules. You have any comments, hanh?”

His new bride Evalyn look him rat in da eyes and say, “No, dats fine wit me Arnold, just understand dat dere will be sex here at seven o’clock every night, whether you here or not.”


Cheaper fuel helps business; savings adds up to more hiring and investments. Airlines, repair services, freight haulers, farmers and manufactures could save billions of dollars a year. Airlines are the largest winners; jet fuel prices have fallen to $2.46 but don’t expect them to pass the savings to passengers. Prices for West Texas Intermediate and Brent crude oil fell to a five year low Monday to $63.05 a barrel. It seems that oil prices may continue to drop but there comes a point when too low oil prices could start hurting energy producing states. When I predicted, several months ago, that gas at the pump would go down to $2.50 a gallon, I believed that would be the bottom. The low prices are a boost to the economy. A big help to working families. Gas has dropped $1 a gallon in the past year, a big savings for customers. Nobody can say happy days are here again but the outlook is very good and has been steady for quite some time. The stock market is at record levels, unemployment is down and the deficit has fallen so far you don’t hear the “Talking Heads” mention it any more. Although bitterly denounced by Republicans at every turn President Obama’s economic and energy policies have worked. Now if the legislatures would pass a minimum wage and a highway bill, the middle class would be lifted and up to a couple million jobs could be created to improve our infrastructure. Happy days could be here again. What is likely to happen, because of the extremist in the Congress, is more gridlock paralyzing the government. Folks have a short memory. They forget whose party was in control when the economy crashed and burnt in 2007, the worse recession since the great depression. Today, we’re on a high note. We need to give credit where credit is due. *****Well, I’ve come to the end of another column. I give thanks to the Big Man for allowing me to still be able to do this and communicate with you. I thank you for the time you spend with me each week. Read us cover to cover and please, whenever possible, shop our family of advertisers who make it all possible. We’re locally owned and operated and strive to make our community better. Take care and God bless.