Oscar winning actor/comic Robin Williams, 63, was found dead in his Tiburon, California home around noon Monday, Aug. 11. Tiburon is across the Golden Gate Bridge north of San Francisco. His death was a suicide due to asphyxia (death by hanging). He had been battling severe depression of late. Robin was considered a comic genius, a versatile actor beloved by several generations. Baby Boomers first became acquainted with him in 1978 as Mork on TV’s Mork and Mindy. Many remember him as a D.J. in 1987’s “Good Morning Vietnam.” He was one of the most beloved entertainers of our time. Depression is a desperate disease often unnoticed by others. A victim is often alone in a crowd. You never know those who might be suffering, Williams appeared to be an unlikely victim.*****We were disappointed and sad to learn that our friend of many years Judge Don Peters is in a Beaumont hospital. He is reported to not be doing well and may have suffered a stroke. There will be a benefit blood drive for the Judge Sunday, Aug. 17, from 1 p.m. to 5 p.m. at the Bridge City Fire Station. Your help would be deeply appreciated. Our best wishes and prayers go out to Judge Peters.*****We spoke with Judge Derry Dunn, in the hospital in Houston Tuesday. He says he is healing, off of strong antibodies, but still can’t put weight on his legs. He’s very bored but thankful Jane has been with him. He was packing up to come home Tuesday in time for supper. It may be sometime before he can operate his tractor. For now he’s thankful to be recovering, back home and looking forward to the day when the gulf water bacteria is just a memory.*****We were sorry to learn that Karen Jo’s  mother-in-law, former Bridge City teacher Sally Vance, had broken her back. We don’t know much about it but Karen is by her side in Dallas. Speedy recovery.*****Sharon Wooley tells us that Bridge City High School teacher Karen Tomlin is in ICU with high fever and a bacterial infection. She is very ill. Please pray for Karen, husband Jeff and children Dustin and Sarah. Best wishes to all of our friends and readers on the sick list.*****Now I must be moving on. Please come along, I promise it won’t do you no harm.
Last week I had a keen interest in the outcome of the republican primaries. Why? Well, I saw it as an attempted power grab by the Tea Party to control the votes in the U.S. senate if in the November election the Republican Party is successful in capturing the senate. They just need a net gain of six to take control. Last weeks results, plus the earlier wins by established republicans in Mississippi, Kentucky and South Carolina, along with the clean sweep beating down all six Tea Party challenges, dealt a blow to Sen. Ted Cruz and other extremist. Cruz has little influence in the senate. His power is more in controlling a dozen or more congressmen that he uses to under mind Speaker John Boehner’s efforts on by-partisan issues. If the GOP did take over the senate, Tea Party wins last week would have given Cruz a strong voice in who would become the senate majority leader. Cruz and company had pulled out all the stops and spent millions to unseat senators Lamar Alexander, of Tennessee and Pat Roberts of Kansas. The Tea Party has tried everything to destroy President Obama but he is not their only target. They are desperately trying to destroy the Republican Party as it is. They want to replace it with candidates with their extreme views. Republicans blame Tea Partiers for squandering the party’s shot at senate control in 2010 and 2012. Months ago Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell vowed to “crush” Tea Party candidates. He knew if Cruz and the Tea Party prevailed in this year’s senate races, he would have no chance to become majority leader. The Tea Party has said no to everything from immigration to a jobs bill. They have been responsible for shutting down the government. The Republican Party feel the six for six win last week over Tea Party candidates, plus the previous two wins, gives them a better chance to take over the majority in November’s General Election. Primary wins by Tea Party candidates would have increased the chances of democrats maintaining control of the senate. What is galling however to the GOP establishment were the millions of dollars spent by outside Tea Party groups against GOP candidates this year. They feel those donations could be used in tough battles with democratic candidates in the general election. Their odds are better after sweeping the Tea Party but a GOP takeover is far from a done deal. In fact, even if the GOP takes over, they may do so without their leader McConnell, who is in a dead heat with Grimms in Kentucky. Also, a 2016 win by Hillary Clinton is sure to return the congress to democratic control, making it much easier to work with a centrist republican senate and a democratic congress. Don’t bet the farm that democrats will lose the senate. If so it will be for only two years. That’s my take.
10 Years Ago-2004
Buffalo from Louisiana swam across Sabine Lake and the Intracoastal Waterway before roaming the streets of Bridge City. Orange County Animal Control officer Will Winfree and volunteers rounded up the rogue herd of eight buffalo, three bulls and five cows. Will used Sylvia’s Rocking S pen on Roundbunch, loaded the herd and returned the buffalo to the Gray estate in Cameron Parish.*****Ginny Cox, “Neighbor’s” better half is home after a few days in hospital. She is one of the first to receive a stint; a new heart ornament that saves lives. *****Crude oil jumps to $46.58 a barrel, an all-time high. (Editor’s note: That was the Bush/Cheney years. Before the oil men left office oil by the barrel went up to over $100  never to come down again.)*****Health care and prescription drugs have gone up 49 percent between 2001-2004. *****Houston Republicans are releasing a well timed book criticizing John Kerry’s war record. These are the same folks who stopped John McCain in his tracks when he was leading George W. four years ago. McCain, a five year war prisoner, was accused of cooperating with the enemy and selling out the USA.*****The 2004 Jerry Hughes Realty team consist of Jerry, Darla Bertrand, Sherry Hommel, Pat Cailavet, Loretta and Debbie Hughes, Wayne Potter, Gertie Ewing, Rana Miller and Charles Cessac.*****GONE BUT NOT FORGOTTEN: Mary Louise Fitzgerald, 88, died Aug. 5.*****Rosa Mae Lavergne, 86, died Aug. 10.*****Dempsey “Ten Mile” Turner, 86, died Aug. 13.*****Rosemary Shannon, 86, of Mauriceville, died Aug. 9.*****Ada Bergeron, 87, of Orange, died Aug. 13.
35 Years Ago-1979
Charlotte Marks is still a patient at St. Mary Hospital. She has now regained consciousness since falling and receiving a head injury while working at Dairy Queen. Family members feel her condition has improved.*****Craig Fisette is having the time of his life this summer. He is in Strausburg, France for six weeks of study. On weekends he makes side trips to Switzerland, the French Riviera, Venice, Brussels, Netherlands and Paris.*****Julia Fudge is back at work at the Bridge City Police Department after recuperating from surgery. She is working with the new chief Andy Verret.*****Fannie Beaty can be seen running around town on a yellow Moped (bike). *****Last weekend Joe Kazmar hit a hole-in-one. It was his first and the first he had even witnessed. *****Rush Wood is the new sports information director at Lamar University. *****Juliette and Janey Patton, mother and daughter, celebrated birthdays last week. *****Karen Leslie Smith became the bride of Mark Hryhorchuk Saturday, Aug. 4. They are attending Texas A&M. *****Mary Teresa Mott became the bride of Mark Couvillion Aug. 4. *****Janet and James Fontenot celebrated their wedding anniversary August 13. *****Frank Manchac, Jr. will wed Lara Ann Pachar on Saturday, Aug. 18. The bride will be given in marriage by her uncle Neal Miller, Jr., former Orange  mayor. *****Vicki Curtis is now engaged to Frank Brown, son of Edgar and Betty Brown. Dr. Frank is teaching Artificial Intelligence at the University of Texas. They plan a December wedding.*****Doug Ballard is home from hospital in Houston after being treated for Spinal meningitis.*****Neal Bond, Bridge City school employee is hospitalized for surgery.*****Congrats to Lou and Arval Hebert on the birth of their twins, Michael and Anna.*****Former West Orange and Texas Longhorn baseball player, Andre Robertson of Orange, was named to the Sporting News All American Team which is compiled by the nation’s pro-scouting directors.Robertson was drafted by Florida State League where he is known as “Robbie.” (Editor’s note: Andre went on to play for the New York Yankees and is now employed by DuPont in Orange.)
We were sorry to learn of the death of Jack Jones, 86, who died Saturday, Aug. 9. Funeral services will be held at 10 a.m. Thursday, Aug. 14, at First United Methodist Church in Orange. Jack was a teacher, coach and principle at LC-M. He was a good man. Our condolences to Rosalie and her entire family. Please see obituary.*****Billy Hardee, of Bridge City, manager of Mauriceville Market Basket, is recovering from angioplasty surgery after finding out he had two aneurysms. The surgery was Aug. 11, which also happened to be his birthday. We wish him a speedy recovery. *****We hear Brandy Slaughter is involved in a new exercise group in Orange at Fit Life. The program is called The Live and Lead project. *****Rory Mellroy, of Ireland, wins PGA championship golf tournament Sunday at Valhalla Golf Club, in Louisville, Ky. He became only the fourth player in the last century to win four majors at age 25 or younger. Phil Mickelson closed with a 66 and was runner up for the ninth time in a major. *****I didn’t see any bright spots after watching the Houston Texans and Dallas Cowboys. I also don’t find much to get excited about with the Texas Longhorns and A&M Aggies. I had hoped I could find joy in watching the New Orleans Saints but my hopes are fading. *****Death on dirt track clouds NASCAR image. Driver Kevin Ward, Jr., age 20, was killed by Tony Stewart’s car when he ran onto the track.  The ripple effect could be enormous across racing series, sponsors and teams after Stewart’s car struck and killed Ward Saturday night at Canandaigua Motor Sports Park, in New York. The death is being investigated by the sheriff’s department. So far no evidence of a crime. Stewart has expressed sadness but this tragic death won’t soon go away. *****Tim Tebow has joined ESPN SEG Nation. A pre-game show, College Game Day, will air only from Southeastern Conference venues. The first show, South Carolina vs. Texas A&M,  will air Aug. 28,  Tebow says the hardest thing he had to do is walk away from being a quarterback in the NFL.*****Fresh female voices will be featured on Sirius XM’s “The Highway” channel. One of the new country voices is Clare Dunn, who has just released her new single, “Cowboy Side of You.” It is estimated that nearly 40 percent of radio listened to now is turned in to satellite radio. *****The Wednesday Lunch Bunch will dine at Novrozsky’s this week and at Robert’s next week. Everyone is always welcome. *****A few folks we know celebrating their special day in the next few days. First let me remember former Orange resident Fran LeMaster, who turned 100 Monday, Aug. 11. Many people here will remember her. She now lives in California. She was very active in this area especially with the First Presbyterian Church. She is still on the go and doing quite well. We wish her many years of good health. Belated happy birthday. *****On Aug. 13, our buddy of many years, a West Orange product, Clint Landry, father of BC baseball coach Chad Landry and a great guy to buy life insurance from marks another year. ***Also celebrating on this day isMonty Eshbach, Ken Phelps, Terry Walles and former B.C. homemaking teacher Linda Windham.***Happy anniversary toJames and Janet Fontenot celebrating their anniversary on this day. Best wishes and many more.*****Celebrating Aug. 15are talented Kristie Gunn, daughter of Cindy and Chris Gunn, Norma Smith, Brandi Arnold and Christine Johnson. They share birthdays with Ben Affleck, 41, Mike Connors, “Mannix”, 88, and Rose Marie, 90.*****On Aug. 16Gwen Boehme and Joe Sanders celebrate. They join Madonna, 55 and Kathie Lee Gifford, 60. *****Aug. 17 finds Henry Bland, reaching a ripe old age. Also celebrating are Nancy Finchum, Johnny Stimac and Jane Busby. They share birthdays with Robert DeNiro, 70, Sean Penn, 53 and Donnie Wahlberg, 44.*****Aug. 18 finds a beautiful lady Carolyn Ward celebrating. Also Ian MacCammond and Helen Gresham. This would have been the birthday of my late friend Gene Hidalgo. ***Celebrating also on this day is Robert Redford, 77, Rosalyn Carter, 86, Roman Polanski, 80 and comedian Andy Samberg, 35.***Happy anniversary also to former Record “Girl Friday” Nicole and Dusty Gibbs, who now make Oklahoma home.*****On Aug. 19, best wishes to Linda Tibbits, Brett Johansson, Pat Brown and Braydon Denison. They share a birthday with President Bill Clinton, 67, singers Clay Walker, 44 and Lee Ann Womack, 47. *****A few facts about August 16Babe Ruth died at age 53, in 1948. ***Elvis Presley died at Graceland at age 42, in 1977. ***Kathie Lee Gifford was born Aug. 16, 1953. *** Madonnawas born Aug. 16, 1958. ***On Aug. 16, 1954, “Sports Illustrated” magazine made its debut. Eddie Mathews, Milwaukee third baseman, was on the cover. (Editor’s note: Another treasure lost to Ike. Michael Jordan holds the record for covers with 49.)*****Anheuser-Bush is importing its first Mexican lager to the U.S. starting next month. Montejo will be available for the first time out of Mexico. It’s a great beer and will be very popular in Texas. *****Our friend James Hamilton brought us some fresh cut okra. It’s as good as any I have eaten and just the right size. He also brought fresh shelled pinto beans. Sure made Mama’s corn bread taste good last night.*****Welcome Little Caesars to Bridge City. That’s good news. They are located in the former Novrozsky’s building at Ferry Drive and Hwy. 87. Little Caesars will open for business next Tuesday, Aug. 19Curtis Breaux is the owner. (No kin to Sherlock Breaux.) Curtis’ daughter Louren will manage the pizza place. I predict it will be very popular. *****Orange County Treasurer Christy Khoury returned over the weekend from a week long county treasurer conference in Amarillo. All elected treasurers in the state attended. Christy says it’s a small world. One of the elected officials she met is Nelda Burton’s first cousin. She said they were kept too busy to meet a West Texas cowboy.*****Twenty years ago, Aug. 12, 1994, baseball came to a halt and didn’t return for 232 days. The Major League baseball strike that ended basketball superstar Michael Jordan’s baseball career. Also Bo Jackson, Sid Bream, Lloyd McCllendon and Hall of Famer Goose Gossage would never play again. That strike altered baseball history.
One day, Marie, wat lives way out at Pecan Island, sent her little boy Tee-Ned down to da pond to get some water for cooking dinner. As Tee-Ned was dipping da buket in da water him, he saw two big old eyes looking back at him. He dropped dat bucket and hightailed it back to da kitchen as fast as his little legs would carry him.
Marie axe, “Tee-Ned, where’s my bucket of water, hanh?”
Tee-Ned cried out, “I can’t get no water from dat pond Mama, dere’s a great big ol’ alligator down der!”
Marie answer, “Tee-Ned, don’t you mind dat ol’ gator, he’s been dere for many years him, and he ain’t never hurt nobody. Cher, he’s probably as scared of you as you is of him.”
Tee-Ned replied, “Well Mama, if he’s as scared of me as I am of him, den Mama, dat water it ain’t fit to drink no!”
President Obama has committed United States air strikes against militants in Iraq. You will hear that he’s the fourth president to lunch attacks in Iraq. The U.S. is not attacking the Iraqi people; we are protecting them from outside attacks from the terrorist organization ISIS. Pilots and drones hit specific ISIS targets. Many civilian Iraqis have been rescued and taken to safety. Thousands remain trapped on a mountain, scrambling for food and water dropped by the U.S. President Obama said Saturday that he would not commit ground troops in Iraq. Well, that brought out  Lindsey Graham and John McCain, who both proposed 16 months ago that Obama commit 40,000 troops to Syria. Today those boots on the ground would probably have grown to 100,000 or more. The two senators also wanted boots on the ground in Ukraine. Now they’re unhappy thatObama is not going to commit ground troops again in Iraq. The worse foreign policy decision in my lifetime was the invasion and occupation of Iraq by Bush/Cheney after Bush Sr. said it would be a disaster that Iraq would never recover from. NowGraham and McCain are fear mongering again. Graham is saying if we don’t destroy ISIS now, meaning full U.S. military force, they will come to our homeland and we will have to fight them here. I guess they will bring those old pickup trucks with the guns mounted in the bed. All that fear talk will be their talking points between now and the November elections. You can expect Hannity, O’Riely, Kelly, and others to pick it up claiming the President doesn’t know how to handle foreign policy. I believe he’s right, the American people are tired of war. The cost and sacrifice of young lives is too big a load. We have carried it for too long. President Reagan signed a law that we would never allow genocide anywhere in the world and if we can prevent it with air strikes that should be good enough. Not for the war mongers and weapon manufacturers who love war. It’s good for business and two of their favorite senators are Graham and McCain. For the next couple of months it will be “Pile it on Obama” time in order to hold his numbers low, despite their own popularity being in the teens. It’s all about politics so don’t be led into believing everything you hear. It’s mostly spin. *****My time is up, thanks for yours. Please read us cover to cover and shop our family of advertisers when you can. Take care and God bless.