Last week, a Federal Grand Jury indicted 13 Russians for meddling in our presidential election, a real attack on our democracy. President Trump puts blame everywhere but on Russia. He still refuses to enforce sanctions against Russia imposed by our congress.*****The winter games, the 2018 Olympics are in progress in Pyeongchang, South Korea. In the medal tracker, the U.S. is behind their regular pace. Some new Olympic stars will emerge but as a country, the U.S. will be disappointed unless they can have a late winning streak.*****Dominating the news is the killing of 17 high school students in Florida which I will write about next.*****Early voting has begun in Texas. Locally there are only contested races in the Republican Primary. Election Day is March 6. Early voting is easy, Orange Public Library, Bridge City Public Works, 220 Nitsche St.; Mauriceville Volunteer Fire Dept. 10691 Hwy. 62; Raymond Gould Community Center, Vidor.*****We are still operating with a short crew but things are looking up. I must move on. Please come along, I promise it won’t do you no harm. 


This is not breaking news, everyone by now, unless they have been under a rock, know about the Valentine’s Day massacre at Parkland Florida High School where 17 students were killed and 15 others wounded. The following is my way to record history. Our nation is under attack. Three of the 10 deadliest mass shooting in modern American history have occurred in the past five months, most recently, last week, at Marjory Stoneman-Douglas High School. If terrorists were shooting up our classrooms, the U.S, military would have already launched air strikes overseas in retaliation. These attacks are coming from within. Growing numbers of Americans are being massacred at churches, concerts, night clubs, and shopping malls and in too many classrooms. Meanwhile, the nation does virtually nothing to stop the slaughter. Leaders, like Florida’s Gov. Rick Scott and President Trump, complain vigorously about absolutely pure evil running amuck without a mention of weapons of war used to carry out these massacres. Trump spoke for seven minutes about thoughts and prayers, never once mentioning guns. Gov. Scott said he would discuss with the Legislature about increasing funs for mental health. Office holders, supported by the NRA just will not discuss the real problems in fear of the NRA cutting off donations. Despite 91% of Democrats and 75% of Republicans favor banning assault weapons. Sen. Bill Nelson said, on the senate floor, “An AR15 is not for hunting, it’s for killing.” This is a list of mass shootings in the USA in which AR15 style rifles were used. Feb. 24, 1984, Las Angeles, CA; Oct. 7, 2007, Crandon, WI; June 2012, Aurora CO; Dec. 14, 2012, Newtown, CT; June 7, Santa Monica, CA; March 19, 2015, Little Water, NM; May 31, 2015, Conyers, GA; Dec. 2, 2015, San Bernardino, CA; June 12, 2016, Orlando, FL (night club); Oct. 1, 2017, Las Vegas, NV (music festival); Nov. 5, 2017, Southerland Springs, TX. (church). It is estimated that Americans own more than eight million AR15 rifles, the most popular rifle in America. They’re accurate and shoot as quickly as you can pull the trigger. In most states you can’t purchase a drink until you are 21 but you can buy a weapon of war at the age of 18 and the brand is still developing. The time for kicking the can down the road should be over but lawmakers will only give lip service and do nothing until the killing happen again. They will continue to say, “Guns don’t kill, people do.” One way to reduce the carnage is dial down the killing power of these broken individuals by making it far more difficult for them to obtain their killing tools of choice, assault-style rifles with high capacity magazines. That’s easy enough to fix but congressmen and senators are gutless when going against the NRA. The student movement across the county, their march on Washington March 24, could make a big impact. These youngsters united carry a big stick. It’s time for more than thoughts and prayers. It’s time to stop the madness and I believe our youngsters are serious about that. It’s a reason to hold out a little hope.


10 Years Ato-2008

Moving ahead on technology. “People will increasingly interact with computers using speech and touch screens rather than keyboards,” Microsoft chairman Bill Gates said last week, “It’s one of the big bets we’re making.” He was in Pittsburgh in the final step of a farewell tour before he withdraws from the company’s daily operation in July. Gates is one of America’s great personal success stories. *****Despite gasoline supplies at their highest level in 14 years, oil companies are making record profits and paying outrageous management bonuses; the price at the pump could rise this summer to $3.50 a gallon without disrupting the domestic supply. By next fall, prior to the national election, prices will drop to around $2.25 a gallon, giving a big impression of cheap gas, down by over $1 a gallon. It will be an election mirage. Sen. Hillary Clinton is the only candidate with a plan to put excess tax on the oil companies who continue gouging at the pump. Oil companies who exceed a good profit. *****Happy birthday to the great state of Texas. On March 2, 1836, 172 years ago, Texas was declared an Independent Nation. *****Also happy birthday to a few friends. Marilyn Powell, Feb. 26, David Claybar, Feb. 27. *****Orange Savings Bank CEO Darby Byrd will step down to be replaced as president by Orange native Stephen Lee. Stephen being elevated to the top is a good move. Everyone who knows him has nothing but praise and considers him to be a good man. He’s one of Benis Lee’s three sons and like his dad, was raised in the banking business and has a strong affection for Orange County. We can’t say enough about the great job Darby and his folks have done with OSB financial services. The growth and expansion of the bank far exceeds the expectations at the time Darby and his stockholders took over Orange Savings Bank. (Editor’s note: Darby passed away a couple of years ago.)*****The ‘Daily Texan’ a daily newspaper that serves the 50,000 students of the University of Texas, Friday endorsed Hillary Clinton for president. *****Congrats to Coach Roc and his Lamar basketball team, who is now 11-1. They play again Wednesday night. Over 8,000 fans showed up for the last outing. They are putting Beaumont on the map.*****Speaking of that, I heard Beaumont mentioned on national television at least a dozen times since former President Bill Clinton appeared here last week. That was his third visit, before, during and after being United States President. *****If you haven’t visited Snappy’s for breakfast, let me recommend it to you. *****Our friend Mary Stanton hasn’t been seen in months. Last I heard she was working for Ray and Tina Cotton at ‘The Longhorn.’ *****Our longtime pal Joe Payne, at Harmon Chevrolet, is facing some health problems right now but Joe is the toughest little guy we know. He’ll battle through this and be fine. (Editor’s note: Ten years later Joe is working three days a week for Donnie Harmon at Harmon’s Pre-owned Autos.)


Ronney Dean Bornette, 48, of Orange, passed away Feb. 24. Funeral services will be held Wednesday, Feb. 27. He was a lifelong resident of Orange and worked as a pipefitter in the construction industry. Suvivors are his loving wife Margarita Bornette, daughter, Monica Bornette, sons, Ronney Bornette, Bryan Bornette and Aaron Bornette. step mother, Yvonne Bornette. ***** Graveside services for Charla Ann Collins, who passed away Feb. 21, will be held Wednesday, Feb. 27. She is survived by her husband, Curtis Collins, daughter Aleisha Davis, stepdaughter, Misty McKinney and six grandchildren.*****Josephine “Josie” Ratcliff, 95, of West Orange, died Saturday Feb. 23. Funeral services were held Tuesday Feb. 26. She is survived by her son, Gladmon, daughters, Jeanette Copeland and Leanette Stark, eight grandchildren and 16 great-grandchildren and nine great-great-grandchildren. ***** Charles Russell “Chick” Hebert, 85, of Orange died Monday, Feb. 18. Funeral service was held Friday, Feb. 22. He served in WWII in the US Navy and flew with the blimp squadron. He retired from Dupont after over 30 years of service. He is survived by daughter, Sue Ellen Hammons, sons, Randy Hebert and Guy Hebert, three grandchildren and four great-grandchildren.***** Ruth Dickey, 88, of Orange died, Sunday, Feb. 24. Funeral service was Thursday, Feb. 28. She was an avid square dancer with Merry Mixers. She is survived by son, Pete Dickey Jr., daughters, Sylvia Dickey Smith and Glenda Dickey Merrell, nine grandchildren, seventeen-great-grandchildren.***** William Harold O’Brien, 91, of Orange died Tuesday, Feb. 19. Funeral service was held Saturday, Feb. 23. He served in the US Navy during WWII and was instrumental in bringing city bus transportation to Orange. He also owned the Sinclair filling station on Green Avenue. He is survived by his children, Julie O’Brien Walters, Mike Wilson, Jeff Wilson and Patty Karlstrom, twelve grandchildren and five great-grandchildren.

40 Years Ago-1978

Glenn Gill replaced David Wheaton as Bridge City Water District manager. Julie Duncan was selected as office supervisor of four women employees. *****Lowell Scribner celebrates a birthday. *****Wilda Martin and husband Lewis celebrate 25 years of marriage. *****Go Texan representatives from Orange County are Jack Hunter, Clyde and Bea Jordan, Sheriff Ed Parker and Wayne Frederick. *****The Bridge City-Orangefield Community Center reps declare, “Tape it up week” with signs reading “Lets Build It Now.” Citizens are asked to take one and tape it to their car windows to show they are backing the effort to build a community center in Bridge City. No public funds are being used for the center, the land was donated and funds raised from local families. *****Don Cole, owner of Cole Plumbing, filed for Place 2 on the Bridge City Council. The spot is being vacated by Billy Wright. Cole is challenged by Clifford Sneed. *****Curtis Fisette, son of Patsy and Harold, had knee surgery at St. Elizabeth Hospital. *****Janice Lapeyrolerie, a sophomore at Lamar, receives the Mamie McFadden Scholarship. She is working toward her Bachelor of Science Degree in nursing. *****The Western Store holds its grand opening. Congrats to Ms. Kathy Lucia on her nice new building on Green Avenue. *****Jack and Elaine White are going to be grandparents. *****Connie and Johnny Dorman became the parents of an 8 pound, 1 ounce baby boy Thursday. The 20 inch high youngster will be named Brandon. Proud grandparents are Vivian and Jack Dorman. Their daughter Donna gave them a grand daughter in October. *****Norman and Ginger Prince, along with friends Freddie and Denise Guyote, have just returned from a Red River, New Mexico, skiing trip. It was their first experience. *****Delores Cantu, a West Orange High grad, can be seen in her first feature role in ‘The Class Renegade,’ March 2, on NBC. Miss Cantu’s career started in 1972 when she appeared in the Miss USA and Miss Universe pageants representing Eastern Airlines as ‘Miss Hospitality.’ She has appeared in ‘The Edge of Night,’ ‘Love of Life,’ ‘Annie Hall’ and was in ‘Saturday Night Fever.’ She has done commercials for MacDonald’s and numerous others. She plans to come home for the class of ‘68 reunion. (Editor’s note: I wonder what Delores is doing today.)


The Wednesday Lunch Bunch dines at JB’s Barbeque this week and at Van Choate’s Tuffy’s next week. Everyone always welcome to break bread with some great folks.*****Our buddy George Holder tells us the J5 Tractors is the number one Mahindra dealer in North America. George is at the Buna store. He says they have great deals right now on all size tractors and Zero mowers. George is a good ole country boy. Tell him we sent you.*****A couple of years ago Robert Ramirez, owner of Robert’s Meat Market, took up raising cattle as new hobby. He is having a ball with no expectation of making any money. He has a prize bull he calls his hero who has produced 10 caves in the last few months. A couple of weeks ago, Robert even got a set of twins, not identical. He can always get away from the stress at his little ranch.*****I finally got in contact with my old buddy, former lawman, Wilson Roberts. For several months I had been calling the wrong number. He has been laying low since he turned 80. He wasn’t aware that Roy had been under the weather and in the hospital. He and V.J. didn’t know H.D. is in St. E’s. V.J. is still working at the granite place while Wilson takes care of the cooking and cleaning.*****I hear Marlene has had a ‘hitch’ in her come-along. Probably from long ago bad habits.*****Former Sheriff Chief Deputy David Bailey has been dining with the Lunch Bunch lately. He always has a story to tell.*****Judge Derry Dunn and Judge Joe Parkhurst both went to hospital last week for minor procedures.*****Be sure to go see Bruce and Donna Self out at Burger Town for their Friday Lenten special…the fish sandwich is great.*****In this week’s issue is a story on Texas Seceding from the Union on Feb. 23, 1861. Read it, you’ll enjoy it.


A few folks celebrating birthdays in the next few days. Feb. 21: Getting a year older on this day are pretty Paulette Stevens, Chris Menard, Beverly Satir, Misty Song and Jim Izer. Joining them are actors Jennifer Love Hewitt,  38,  Corbin Bleu,  28, Kelsey Grammar,  62, and comedian  Jordan Peele,  38.*****Feb. 22: Celebrating today are Amanda Newman, Chad Boatman, Jasmine Lindner and Leslie Braus. Celebrities celebrating on this day are  actors Drew Barrymore,  42,  Julie Walters, 67, basketball player Julius Erving, 67 and Pop singer James Blunt, 43.*****Feb. 23: Judge Brint Carlton, Misti Bishop, Juanita Sullivan and Matthew Bland all celebrate today. Joining them are actors Dakota Fanning,  23,  Kelly MacDonald,  41,  Niece Nash,  47.*****Feb. 24: Joe Hebert, Dalton Bonds, Regina Harrington and Scarlett Fontenot have birthdays today. Also celebrating on this day is boxer Floyd Mayweather, Jr.  40, actors Billy Zane, 51, O’Shea Jackson, Jr., 26. *****Feb. 25: Asst. Bridge City Chief/Orangefield school board member Brad Frye celebrates today. Also a year older is Doris Byrd and Zelda Jones. Joining them are wrestler Ric Flair,  68, comedian Chelsea Handler, 42, and actress Tea Leom, 51.*****Feb. 26: Celebrating birthdays today are Angela Brinson, Betty Sherman, Claudia Williams and Amanda Beeson. They are joined by rock singer Michael Bolton,  64,  actors Carlos Esparza, 27, and Teresa Palmer, 31.*****Feb. 27: A special Happy Birthday to these special folks, Anna Belle Rost, Gretta Brinson and David Claybar who all celebrate on this day. Having birthdays also are pop singer Josh Groban, 36, comedian James Perry, 30 and actress Kate Mara, 34.


One morning last week at daylight, Rufus Tibodeaux found his friend Clovis Comeaux on da lot behind Tee-Boy’s Bar & Grill, apparently looking for sumting him.

“Wat’s dat you looking for Comeaux?” He noticed that Clovis had da left side of his head in his palm.”

“Tib, I hate to told you, las night I got in a fight with Leroy Broussard and he cut off my ear him, I’m here trying to find my ear before somebody run over it.”

Thibodeaux say, “I’ll help you look for it.”

After a little while, over in da shell, Tib pick up something dat look like an ear. He holler at Comeaux wat was still holding his head to hide dat ugly place. “Comeaux, look wat I find, I tink dat’s you ear for sure.”

Clovis say, “Tib, put dat ugly ting down, dat’s not my ear, I can told you dat.”

Tib say, “How you know dat you?”

“Well Tib, because mine had a pencil on top of it.”



Monday morning, while watching MSNBC, I was surprised to see Cameron Cruse, who is the wife of George Cruse, Jr., of Bridge City. The television feature was about Cameron and friend Lisa Bradley’s R. Riveter handbag business. Both ladies are military spouses. A few years ago they founded and started making handbags out of recycled military materials, such as tents, retired uniforms etc. In 2015, the ladies appeared on the TV show ‘Shark Tank’ which landed them an investment deal with Mark Cuban that led to making the company very successful. Today, the Southern Pines, North Carolina Company has a military-spouse work force around the nation. The retail price of the bags runs from $200 to $250. Uniquely well worth the cost, the bags are all handmade, different styles and made in the USA by military wives. (A side bar: George Jr. is serving time overseas in the Air Force. In the meantime, his mother Kirby Ridley Cruse, of Bridge City, has been in North Carolina helping daughter-in-law Cameron with the youngsters while she runs the business. George Sr., local milk man, stayed home to see that our local stores have fresh milk. He says George Jr. will soon have his 20 years in the military and will retire with high ranking. Most Bridge City folks will remember George Jr., as a high school track star.) *****Please shop our family of advisers. *****The “Skeeters” are coming, call Pestco before they invade. Take care and God bless.