Monday Judge Carl Thibodeaux made the hardest decision he’s ever had to make. Calling it quits as County Judge. He wanted to serve another term badly but those aware of his past health problems knew there might come the time when he would have to choose between his health and the stress. Over the years, Thibodaux has had heart problems resulting in several stints. Going through the annual budget process always took its toll. No county judge in the past 60 years that I’m aware of has been more dedicated, always on the job with his door wide open. No county judge prior to Thibodeaux ever voted on every issue. It’s not necessary except in case of a tie. Judge Thibodaux never shies away from any issue. He takes any heat that comes his way and lives with the decisions he makes. The longest serving county judge in Orange County history serves us well. There is no doubt in my mind that if he chose to run he would be re-elected. No he wouldn’t have changed parties because it’s the way he came to office and he strongly believes a national party has nothing to do with local representation. “The Judge” has 15 more months and one more budget to go through. We hope he gets to fulfill the remainder of his term and his health doesn’t get in the way. I could fill a sheet full of improvements made during his leadership. When he goes he’ll leave some big shoes to fill.*****I’ve got to move on. Please come along, I promise it won’t do you no harm.

All House Speaker John Boehner had to do was call for an up or down vote on the senate bill. Let the hair go with the hide. It would have been an easy out for everyone, especially for the Speaker. He was threatened by Tea Partymembers, led by Eric Cantor and Paul Ryan, who are joined at the hip with Sen. Ted Cruz, a new Texas senator who arrived in Washington just nine months ago. Canadian born Cuban, Cruz, unheard of a year ago, has stepped on anyone in the way to raise his national visibility. Nine months ago Marco Rubio was the rising star of the GOP. Cruz stepped on him, calling Rubio liberal for trying to pass an immigration bill. Cruz displaced him. Rubio once led the polls, today he’s dead last. Cruz, in mounting his fight against the Affordable Care Act, turned his political career with a one act play. He figures to be the only winner if he can catapult himself into the Republican nomination in 2016 by carrying the early states. He has set himself up as the  leader of the Tea Party. Right now Cruz and Rush Limbaugh are the face of the Republican Party. Oddly enough, Cruz has a better chance at getting the GOP nomination than getting re-elected in Texas in 2018 when the tide will have changed. Cruz has a targeted following, those who will suffer are those who followed Cruz’s lead and shutdown the government. Mark my word, Republicans from the White House to the Courthouse will pay a price. Meanwhile, Cruz moves on to acquire personal power. The Republican Congress outsmarted themselves. They sent a bill to the senate that exempted veterans and others from the shut down. Their gamble was that President Obama would reject the entire bill, instead, e rabbed it up and signed it into law. The‘Horse Head’ was that they were going to blame Obama for turning his back on the military. He left them with egg on their faces. The Tea Party doesn’t vote for anything. Their MO is created on one crisis, after another. Next is the debt ceiling. This one is dangerous and could cause a global meltdown. At some point the American people will say enough. Maybe as early as the next election.

I had to laugh when I heard that former County Commissioner John Dubose was going to run as a Republican for county judge. Anyone who has followed local politics as long as I have knows that John was the most conservative commissioner that served in many decades. That includes the present court. Some may be more vocal but not more reasonably conservative. Two main things stand out about John, his knowledge generally, plus 12 years on the court. The other is his leadership qualities and what I’ve seen since he was mayor of Bridge City and the many improvements he brought to a growing city. He’s not radical in his reasoning. It’s never about himself. He has little ego. Raised as an orphan boy, who worked to educate himself, he’s always been dedicated to service. He calls it pay back for  his well being. I think everyone knew that John would be a candidate for county judge when the time came for Thibodeaux to give it up. The first question I was asked was how he and Commissioner John Banken would work together. I’ve been around politics for a long time and here’s what I know. Over and over again, I’ve seen candidates run against each other and when the dust settled they emerged as friends, in some cases best friends. Banken and Dubose are both grown men. They know the job is not about themselves, it’s about doing the people’s business. That doesn’t mean they might not disagree but both are reasonable enough to work it out and not let it spill over in the public. I know there is no one more qualified to replace Judge Thibodeaux. About that “R” behind his name, I’ll save that comment for another time.

On Tuesday, Oct. 1, 2013, the Affordable Care Act began signing up citizens. The federal government’s health care website healthcare.gov opened for business at 8 a.m. Visitors will be able to navigate ways to shop for and buy health insurance that is now the law of the land. Despite the Tea Party element of the Republican Party’s attempt to kill the bill and remove funding for it, the exchanges opened Tuesday and will remain open for citizens to buy insurance until March 31, 2014. Your local insurance company might very well be in the exchange. If you have questions, calling a local agent might be your best bet, they can guide you in the right direction. All insurance policies will be sold by private insurance companies. The federal government doesn’t and will not sell insurance, it can be bought through the exchange. If you’re happy with your present insurance plan you can keep it. Buying from an exchange company is a choice not a mandate. For more information call 1-800-318-2596.

2001-12 Years Ago
Baseball sweethearts vie for homecoming queen. True beauties are Britanie Harrington, Emily Mills, Stacy Feverjean, Kayla Worthy, Jennifer Powell, Chelsea Updike, Melissa Reed, Tammy Chatlosh, and Robin Braxton. (Editor’s note: A dozen years have gone by and I wonder what life has brought to these young women. I do know Britanie is expecting her second child, lives in Spring, TX. I bet there are several babies who have been born to these former Bobcats.)*****The new “Miss Bridge City” is lovely Britney Elizondo.*****Tom and Jane Perrywere in New Zealand when they got the news that the U.S. had been attacked by terrorists on 9-11. (Editor’s note:Tom has since died and Jane moved away. We haven’t heard how she’s doing.)*****Longtime Orange First Baptist pastor Rev. Cooper Waters, 96, died Saturday, Sept. 28 in San Angelo.***Marvin Simar, 70, died Sunday, Sept. 29. Survivors include wife Jean, sons Paul and James, daughter Gina and mother Odette.***Other deaths: Myrtle Duhon Benoit, 75; Elton Myers, 75; Ethel Prejean, 79; Juanita Ayo Ducote, 77; Nell Burke, 63; Loretta WilsonSeibert, 69; Renae Walles., 92 and Robert Stone, 79.*****Jared Williams, former Bridge City star, is the starting middle linebacker for SFA University.*****Dr. Albert S. Pugh IV turns 50 on Oct. 7. Last week in the Penny Recordsomeone ran a baby picture of him sitting on the pot.*****Ducks Unlimited names banker Billy Burrow “Sportsman of the Year.”*****Former president, Jimmy Carter, turns 77 this week. His brother Billy, who marketed “Billy Beer”died a few years ago. (Editor’s note: President Carter turns 89 years old this week. We have five living presidents. Can you name them?*****The Orange Leader host open house for Opportunity Valley News and Roy Dunn, longtime newspaper publisher. The front page of The Leader featured a 20 year old picture of Roy and Bob Hope. (Editor’s note: Did I dream that or did it really happen? Yes, it did and it was a great party hosted by Leader publisher Craig Stark. Robert Hankins was acting editor. A new editor was coming.*****Airman Michael Chapman, USAF of Orangefiled graduates from basic training at Lackland.*****Bruce Aven, of Orange, hit’s a homerun for the DodgersSunday.

37 Years Ago-1976
After trailing 14-zip at half time, the BC Cardinals came back to win 23-20 against South Park with just 28 seconds left in the game. The TD was debated. One official called it a TD and the other said Toney Mulholland had fumbled the ball just before the goal line. In the end, the TD was good. The team was led by QB Steve Bratton and fullbackKim Bryant, who kicked a field goal to put BC ahead 16-14.*****The West Orange Chiefs ambushed the Cleveland Indians 29-6. WO was led by Tony January, Randy Martell and Harland Robertson. The Chiefs defense was led by Doyle Hinds and company.*****Hebert of Beaumont used a strong second half air attack to completely blitz theLittle Cypress Bears 33-0. It just wasn’t the Bears night. Wade Kachtik had a 33-yard TD called back that would have tied the score 7-7 at half time. Bears field goal kicker Bubba Miller missed on attempts of 37 and 45 yards.*****Jack McCelland accepts federal job. The D.A. investigator will be replaced by Linus Hubbard.*****Elizabeth Smith Black will be 96 on Oct. 12. She is a resident at Polly’s Rest Home. She is the oldest living member of the United Daughters of the Confederacy. Her father was a veteran of the War Between the States.*****Texas Avenue Grocery is remodeling. Dick Bivens is turning loose of some of that money.*****Harry Stephens will be a year older on the 14th so he’s celebrating by having a big appliance sale. That’s the only way he could guarantee folks would come to his party.*****Leland and Vivian Morrow celebrate 39 wedded years. Thy are taking a trip to Hawaii.*****The law office of Wingate, Carlton and Gunn has open house.*****Willie Nelson,Waylon Jennings, Dolly Parton and Mel Tillis are big winners during Monday night country music awards. The MC’s for the show were Johnny Cash and Roy Clark.*****Mrs. R.L. Kibbe passed away last week. She was the daughter of early settler John Bland.***** The A.J. Lapeyrolerie’s, eight children plus grandchildren attended a family reunion in Gabriel, La.

We heard from our longtime friend Nancy McWhorter, formerly from Bridge City, who wrote a recipe column for The Record. She was such a nice lady. Every week she delivered the paper to those who couldn’t get out or were in nursing homes. Nancy is living in Minden, Louisiana, where she writes for the daily paper five days a week. She says it is a beautiful town with nice, friendly people but her heart is still in this area. She lost her husband Mac Sept. 1, 2011. She says, “I miss my Big Mac.” Nancy’s recipes, that were so popular, will again return to The Record and we’re glad of it. Check it out and let us know what you think.*****Big Lots Sunday Sale: 20 percent off entire purchase with coupon. See ad inside.***** If you’re looking to remodel or doing a makeover on your home, contact Russell Milligan at Innovative Designs. You will be impressed with what these folks can do.*****A benefit concert and link sale will be held for Richard “Diesel” Dunkin. Mark your calendar Sunday, Oct. 13, music by Brett Godwin and Friends, links, hot dogs etc. For T-shirts koozies and arm bands contact Stephanie Edgerly at 883-4483. All the action will take place at First Christian Church of Orange, 611-Ninth Street. Richard was injured in a motorcycle accident and is still in a coma. Your help will be deeply appreciated.*****Don’t forget the Lions Club Carnival Thursday, Friday and Saturday, this week and next. Always fun for the family and a worthy cause.*****A few folks we know celebrating their special days. Oct. 2, is a special day for our friends Millard “Neighbor” Cox and Ms. Ginny. They are celebrating their 65th wedding anniversary. Congratulations and best wishes in the future.***Celebrating birthdays on this day are Glenn and Jason Ray, Herb Spencer and Collin Stanley.***On Oct. 3, Darlene and Johnny’syoungest Jason Montange is a year older also Skipper Free’s boy Eddie Free celebrates as does everyone’s friendTony Fuselier.***On Oct. 4, pretty Bonnie Swanson celebrates, also U.S. Army veteran Jason Menard, a former Bridge City football player who Coach Les Johnson called “Little Giant.” A great guy who’s a career soldier. Happy birthday Jason.***** Bobbie Grossman Burgess is a year older. She and Judge Don have moved to the Austin area.Ruth Scales and John Cardner celebrate also.*** This day would have been our friend Don Shockley’s 76 birthday. He passed away on Aug. 30. A month has gone by and seems like last week. A lot of people say it’s not the same with“Cochise” gone.***On Oct. 5, our buddy Percy Bordelon turns 93. We’ve known him since he was 43. He’s one of the good guys.***Former Bridge City baseball star Jared Dillon, the proud son of Jimmy Dillon, celebrates. Also it’s a special day for Elicia Dillion and Darlene Stephens.***On Oct. 6, port director Jimmy Smith celebrates. Also longtime fireman Jerald Ziller, Charlie Dorman and Barbara Angelle.***On Oct. 7, Dr. Albert Pugh turns 62.***On Oct. 8, Lisa Havens, Bridge City Athletic Department secretary celebrates as does Elizabeth Van Metre, Ronnie Halliburton, Larry Welch, Darrell Fisher and Darrin Baudoin. Happy birthday to all. Please see complete list.*****Two beloved Popes will be declared saints in April. Pope Francis said Monday that Pope John Paul II and Pope John XXII will be declared saints April 27. It will be the first time two former Popes will be canonized the same day. Catholics are thrilled by the news. The timing of the ceremony, a week after Easter, will make April exciting and very busy on the Catholic calendar.*****We were sorry to hear that our friend Doug Harrington, since we spoke to him 10 days ago, has had to have surgery with six inches of his colon removed. He is in ICU at St. Luke’s in the Woodlands. He and Regina’s daughter Britanie had a baby girl the same day Doug was rushed to hospital. Regina had her hands full that day.*****We were saddened to learn about the death of Rev. Billy Long, 82. He was Ms.Pearl Burgess’ brother-in-law. He was a good man who served as pastor of many churches. Visitation will be Thursday, Oct. 3, at Calvary Baptist Church in West Orange, from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. Service will follow. Our condolences to his family. Please see obituary.*****The Wednesday Lunch Bunch will dine at Novrozsky’s this week and at Robert’s next. Everyone is welcome.

Glenn Ray, Jason Ray, Ann Wilkinson, Collin Stanley, Herb Spencer, J.V. Chauvin, Jo Bramhan, Regina Pounders, Logan Bonds, Sherry  Baker, Alexandra Bates, Betty Roden, Bobby Romero, Eddie Free, Judy Craig, Bonnie Swanson, Ruth Scales, Carol Kennedy, Beverly Gill, Ryan Dubose, Kyle Ezell, Lori Ess, Sarah Armand, Tricia Prosperie, Candy Hughes, Dakota Rowley, Jami Anderson, Jessica Evans, John Cardner, Kevin Staudenmier, Tyler Miller, Brad Lanthier, Darlene Stephens, Elicia Dillon, Glenn Heil, Jared Dillon, Kay Bilbo, Jerald Ziller, Jimmy Smith, Mildred Gammage, Samual Woodall, Lori Harmon, Barbara Angelle, Cathye Liepy, Charlie Dorman, Inell Lingan, Connie Elkins, Mary Moore, Joby Brown, Elizabeth VanMetre, Nancy Amsden, Ronnie Halliburton, Sandy Frye, Shelly Rose, Blaine Huff, Connie Bland, Darrell Fisher, Larry Welch and Lisa Havens.

Joe Boudeaux was telling me bout his family and how dysfunctional some of dem are. He says his brudder, Otis, had been on a three day drunk and was staggering home from da liquor store wit a pint of whiskey in his back pocket dat he had bought wit his last penny. Stepping up on da curb Otis slipped and fell hard him on his backside. Struggling to his feets he felt something wet running down his leg him. He was overheard saying, “Please God, let it be blood.”*****Joe tole me his wife’s brudder TeeRay is sorry him. I axe, “Wat you mean hanh?” Well, TeeRay him went to see Dr. Gaspard and tole him he wasn’t able to do all da tings around da house he used to do. After da exam he said to da doctor., “Tell me in plain English wats wrong wit me. I can take it me.”
Doc Gaspard answer, “In plain English, you jus lazy you.”
“Okay,” said TeeRay, “Now Doc, give it to me in da medical term so I can tell my wife.”

I’ve come to the end of the line and I haven’t mentioned that Sen. Wendy Davis will announce Thursday that she is a candidate for governor of Texas. It will be an uphill fight. A personal poll I’ve been taking with women the last couple of weeks has been very positive for Wendy. I got some varied comments but most said it was about the good old boys club making decisions on women’s issues. She might run better than we think. She will definitely help down ballot Democratic candidates and slow down straight party voting. *****I’m looking forward to getting Chris Matthews’ new book, “Tip and the Gipper.” He recalls how Ronald Reagan and Tip O’Neil made politics work for the people. A far cry from today’s bi-partisanship. Chris wrote several books. I have his recent best seller, “Jack Kennedy, Elusive Hero.” Matthews is the host of MSNBC’S “Hardball” at 6 p.m. weekdays. He’s one of the most knowledgeable on TV today. *****My time is up. Please shop our family of advertisers. Check us out at TheRecordLive.com daily. Take care and God bless.