I hope you had a good holiday weekend and everyone returned safe and sound. As far as us, we worked on the Fourth to get this issue out. We were still having internet problems but hopefully that‘s now been fixed. It took a near miracle to get a paper out last week.
We had absolutely had no internet service and a much needed phone line was down for several hours. We did some maneuvering that finally produced results but it took a long, nerve racking time. I would have bet it couldn’t be done but we have a very professional staff and by hook or crook, the paper was delivered to all the homes and businesses on time. Our readers have no idea what all goes into producing and publishing the Penny Record and County Record, plus our web site. All of it free to the consumer and delivered to most doorsteps. It’s all made possible by our family of advertisers. Please shop them when you can. A special thanks to you, our loyal readers, you make us the most read publications in Orange County. Hopefully things will go smoother this week.*****I’ve sort of dogged off so I’m far behind. Come along, I promise it won’t do you no harm.


Sixty years ago, we moved into our first home in Bridge City. The settlement was a far cry from what it is today. Texas Avenue was mostly a two and a half lane highway. Most of the streets were dirt. The citizens that were not natives worked at one of the Port Arthur refineries. They had moved to the east side of the Rainbow Bridge to get away from taxes and to be able to acquire enough land to have livestock, raise chickens, hogs and have a milk cow and plant a big garden. Most of the homes were on the south side of town, located on both sides of the highway. Some of the people I recall when I first arrived were the Bendy family, the Martins, Gus Garza’s family, Mayo Leblanc’s folks, the Sartins, Lafittes, Andersons, Kibbys, Blands and a few others. Baker’s Grocery store was located where CVS now is, on the corner of Hwy. 87 and Ferry Drive.  B.O. Sparkle, a large Cajun dance hall and the Midway Motel and Midway Liquor store were the first businesses coming into Bridge City from Port Arthur. Just a few businesses lined Texas Ave. We did have a movie theater. On the other end of town, the Buccaneer Restaurant was somewhat famous. A large feed store was across the road. There wasn’t any shortage of mosquitoes, at times they were unbearable. Off or any mosquito repellent hadn’t been invented yet. There was a lotion, I think made by Jergens that you could rub down with. It helped some. Sometimes they were so thick the sky would be black with them. Those times were really miserable for humans and livestock. However, like many other things, we became somewhat accustomed to the bites. Women had to fight the pest when they hung their wash on the clothes lines or took them in when dry. That was before most had washers and dryers. Most everyone worked out of Bridge City so it became known as a bedroom community. For the most part, it still is, with the exception those now retired. That is briefly the early days around present day Bridge City. On July 7, 1970, the city incorporated. It already had a water and sewer district and a small volunteer fire department but not much else. Law enforcement was handled by the Sheriff’s office. Buck Patillo was the constable, Shirley Swift, a highway patrolman, worked the highway traffic. Judge Toups was the Justice of the Peace. Bridge City was known as a speed trap. Swift and Toups had a pretty good thing going. After Judge Toups, Judge Andrus kept the game going. It wasn’t until Judge Martin Ardion took over that Bridge City’s trap came to a halt. Then Judge Flo Edgerly took over and she also wouldn’t put up with it. For the most part the city has had good law enforcement. Jim Custer was the first marshal and Wilson Roberts the first police chief. Wilson brought the first real law enforcement to the young city. Today, Bridge City has a fine police department under Chief Paul Davis. The department will soon move into their new station. The city has come a long way in its 46 years. Jerry Jones, city manager, is doing a good job. He joins a list of former managers who took their turn advancing the city. There aren’t many cows and chickens left and because of modern methods, the mosquito population is drastically reduced. Bridge City is a great place to live, to raise a family, and enjoy all nature has to offer. Sixty years ago, the area had no organized recreation for youngsters. Today they enjoy great facilities. We’ve come a long way despite setback by two major hurricanes. We’re proud to have one of the greatest school districts in the state. We take pride in our schools, city and community. Happy birthday Bridge City.


10 Years Ago-2006

On July 7th, the city of Bridge City marks 36 years since incorporating in 1970. In a statement Bridge City mayor Kirk Roccaforte said, “Thanks to dedicated mayors, council, staffers, employees, volunteers for boards, commissioners and citizens, Bridge City is what it is today, a great place to live. We are still in a recovery mode due to Hurricane Rita but I’m proud to say we are about 90 percent recovered. I estimate it will take two years of progress to return to normal after the hurricane.” (Editor’s note: What the mayor didn’t know is that in a couple of years the city would again be hit by Hurricane Ike. When you think of that double whammy, so close together, you realize what a great accomplishment the city has made. Those were bad odds to overcome.)*****Ken Lay, convicted of fraud in the Enron case and facing 25 years in prison, died following a heart attack on July 5. His ashes will be buried in the Colorado mountains. Lay didn’t come from old money; he was raised in poverty, in the tiny Ozark village of Tyrone, Missouri. His home didn’t have any services like indoor plumbing, electricity, etc. Lay’s upbringing instilled in him the drive to succeed, he accomplished the American dream. A fascinating life story, but he mistreated it with deception and many people were hurt. *****The Big Red Machine, a group of nine-year-old baseball players, will board a jet plane for a trip into the record books. They are ranked sixth in the nation. The Bridge City select team will face the nation’s best in the USSSA World Series in St. Louis. “Ranked sixth among 559 teams is no small achievement.” said Coach Ronnie Shugart. Shugart has a son and nephew on the team. Ryan Shugart is second baseman and Chase Shugart, a catcher and pitcher. Other team members are Blake Pruett, Logan New, Dillon Taylor, Tanner Doiron, Blane Slaughter, Tryce Howard, Corbin Voegeli, Bryce Carey, Drew Delarosa and Matthew Kress. Assistant coaches for the Big Red Machine are Mike Taylor, David Delarosa, Terry Doiron and Brad Pruit. Point of Interest. According to Coach Shugart, each player is designated two positions but all players can play any position. *****GONE BUT NOT FORGOTTEN Clint Sheppard, 32, died Saturday, July 8. Services were held July 12. A native of Orange County, he a lifelong resident of Deweyville. Clint was a member of Pipefitter’s Local 529.  He is survived by his wife Anita Sheppard, daughter Destiny, mother and step-father Erma and Ronnie Poole, father and step-mother Stanley and Christy Sheppard, sister Stacy Sheppard, brother Bryan Poole and their families.*****Garvin John White, 52, of Deweyville, died Saturday, July 8. Services were held July 11. He was a lifelong Deweyville resident and was a truck driver for the Road and Bridge Department of Orange County.  He is survived by his wife Debbie, mother Ruby White, brother Connie, sisters Ladona Bussell and Cora Sue Lawrence and numerous nieces and nephews.*****Harrell I. Gross, 78, of Orange, died July 5. Services were held July 8. Gross was born in Akron, Ohio and resided in Orange for 38 years. He was a retired maintenance supervisor for Owens Illinois and was a 21 year National Guard veteran. He is survived by his wife Elizabeth, daughter Frances Piegari, son Julian, brother William Gross, sisters Elizabeth Koontz, Sara Roundlett and their families.*****Paul Allen Nelms, 71, of Mauriceville, died July 8. Services were held July 10. He was retired from the United States Army and had served tours in Korea and Vietnam. He is survived by his sons Perry and Calvin Nelms, daughters Linda Collins, Elaine Dowd and Michelle Nelms, step-sons Rusty Honeycutt, Tim Honeycutt and Matthew Honeycutt.

40 Years Ago-1976

Louis Gay will get to celebrate his birthday in Hollywood on July 25, thanks to a gift of airplane tickets for him and wife Nancy from daughter Linda. She has a big party planned with important folks in attendance. *****Don Jacobs’ column, in the Opportunity Valley News, concerns Huey Meaux, Gordon Baxter and Freddie Fender. Bax was presented two gold records of Fenders’ big hits, “Before the Next Tear Drop Falls” and “Wasted Day’s and Wasted Nights,” by Huey. Bax was the very first disc jockey to play the records when they were released. Meaux, an ex-barber and Fender promoter, are longtime friends of Baxters. *****Fred, John and the crew at Bridge City Bank are offering bi-centennial savings bonds, issued July Fourth. *****The Gunns take annual vacation to Florida. Twelve folks, plus one great big dog, traveled in a motor home but will rent sleeping quarters along the way. Gunn Studio is closed this week. *****Stacy Savoy reaches the ripe age of eight this week. *****Bill and Patsy Nacol hold grand opening of their Nacol’s Jewelry store on MacArthur Circle.


Our friends Betty and Corky Harmon have been under the weather since they were involved in a auto accident some time ago. As of late Corky’s health has knocked him down. He’s as thin as a scarecrow. He needs to straighten up and come out and play. For 60-plus years he worked every day. We miss him now that he’s away. It’s not the same around the place without him.*****Lil’ Al and the crew down at Judice’s Cajun Café  have every Cajun dish you can think of, including Couche-Couche (cuch-cuch). This week they are featuring a nice juicy Ribeye steak and those unbeatable BBQ crabs, seasoned just right. If you have never visited the place or tasted the unique food, you need to put it on your list of things to do. You might even spot a picture of someone you know.*****Joey Chestnut retakes the crown, eating 70 hot dogs, beating last year’s winner, Matt Stonie, who only consumed 53 hot dogs. There was a time Bearden would have given them a run for their money.*****Speaking of eating, Peggy’s on the Bayou has changed business hours. See advertisement in this issue.*****Thelma Messer DeLoach and her husband Doug, have opened a new florist shop in the Avenue, on Texas Avenue, in Bridge City. “Truly Blessed” is operated by Thelma, who has many years experience. She does beautiful floral work. Twice before she has been knocked out of business, first by Hurricane Rita and then Hurricane Ike. She’s hoping the third time will be her charm. Give her a call or stop by. She can take care of all your floral needs, all at a more reasonable price.*****On July 6, St. Mary School employee Denise Mumbach celebrates a birthday as does Aaron Myers, Malaya Peveto, Alyson Smith and pretty Lori Winstead. They share birthdays with former U.S. President George W. Bush, 70, spiritual leader Dalai Lama, 81 and actor Sylvester Stallone, 70. *****On July 7, the City of Bridge City is 46 years old. Celebrating birthdays are our longtime friend, new mother, the lovely Major Donna Peterson. Also Judge David Peck is a year older. Here’s wishing him much health improvement in the coming year. This also would have been the birthday of the late Jerry Wilson. Celebrities celebrating on this day are Beatle drummer Ringo Starr, 76, comedian Jim Gaffigan, 50 and Olympic figure skater Michelle Kwan, 36.*****On July 8, Kee-Kee and Nancy’s daughter Elizabeth celebrates as does Margie Bean and Anita Hennigan. They join actors Kevin Bacon, 58, Anjelica Huston, 65, country singer Toby Keith, 55 and chef Wolfgang Puck, 67.*****On July 9 Patrick Halliburton, Steve Stanley, Clark Eastman, Linda Dews and Glenda Whitley celebrate. Also having a birthday on this day is former football player/convict O.J. Simpson, 69, country singer Emily West, 35 and actor Tom Hanks, 60.*****On July 10, our good buddy, everyone’s friend, Donna Riley, marks another birthday. I remember her as a teenager. Also celebrating are Henry Woodard, Connie Welker and Dawnie Wilkinson. Celebrities joining them are actress Sofia Vergara, 44, singer Jessica Simpson, 36 and Rascal Flatts singer Gary Levox, 45.*****On July 11, a special lady, just a sweetheart, Dayle Gunn Weatherford, celebrates another big one. So does Nurse Practitioner Lana Griffith, Michael Brinson, Laura Childress, Charlotte Stout and Peggy Hebert. They are joined by actress Lisa Rinna, 53, football player Andre Johnson, 35 and fashion designer Giorgia Armani, 82.*****July 12 finds a good friend, a nice lady, Christy Khoury celebrating. Also Sue Bearden, Joette Webb, Dera Breaux, Craig Simmons, Nancy Byers, Terry Myers and one of the good guys, Cleon Hogan. They join actor Bill Cosby, 79, fitness guru Richard Simmons, 68 and former boxer Julio Cesar Chavez, 54.*****The Wednesday Lunch Bunch dined at Robert’s last week. Donna Scales found her way to the gathering. She livens up any group. Christy Khoury, Brandy Slaughter and Pam Crew Honeycutt helped out. Marlene and Shirley Zimmerman played hooky. This week the Bunch dines at PK’s Grill, next week at JB’s. Everyone always welcome. *****If you’re looking to spruce up your place, now is a good time to call Pete at Coastal Landscaping. They do it all, from just mowing, weed eating or trimming bushes to a full landscape make over. I saw a place they worked on last week. They made it look like a picture right out of Southern Living. Tell Pete we sent you and he’ll treat you right. Give him a call at 738-2070.


We heard from Cuzzin Sostan. It seems his grandson, Pistach, got in some trouble wit da law. Judge Nunez done agreed to make a deal dat if Pistach would join da Army him, da judge would dismiss da charges. His papa Joe Breaux brought him to da Army recruiter and dey signed Pistach up and da judge dropped da charges. On da first day of boot camp, dat Army private issued him a toothbrush. Dat afternoon, da Army dentist yanked out a half dozen of Pistach’s teets. On da second day, da private came by and give Pistach a comb and hair brush. Dat afternoon, dey sent him to da Army barber who sheared his head. Pistach him, wasn’t so happy bout dat him. He didn’t want to go in da Army anyhow. On da turd day Pistach was issued tree jock straps. His papa Joe says da Army dem is still looking for Pistach. He’s AWOL him.


Today talk show hostess Savannah Guthrie said she would not help cover the Olympics in Brazil. She is expecting her second child and is concerned about the Zika virus linked to birth defects and miscarriages. Several athletes have also backed out of the games because of the country’s Zinka outbreak. Latin America is a concern because of areas with poor sanitization. A Zika infection can lead to symptoms such as rash, fever or joint pain but its also been linked to microcephaly, a condition in which a baby has an abnormally small head and likely other health problems.  Zika can lead to paralysis and death.*****Many polls are out on the presidential election. News polls change almost daily but there is only one poll that Vegas bookmakers use to set the odds on the election. The survey is the count of Electoral College votes. Right now the experts say Sec. Hillary Clinton has 255 sure votes in the bag. Only 15 short of the 270 needed to be elected. Donald Trump is sitting at  190, 80 short of the required 270. In order for him to win, he would have to run the board in all the toss-up states. That’s why the gamblers have Clinton a heavy favorite. I don’t see any way for Trump to close the gap, mostly because he says and does ignorant stuff. One thing to watch for is that Donald Trump will push his children to the top of the publicity ladder. He wants to pass the Trump brand on to the next generation. You’ll see more and more of them. Win or lose, he comes out good. Better if he’s president and they are running his not so blind trust. Don’t forget, it’s all about the money with Donald.*****I told you way back there when he was beating the other poor candidates that he would never finance his own campaign. Now he’s begging for money and asking the GOP to self finance him. What is really, really scary is to think about that looney with his finger on the button.*****I told you a long time ago that Hillary had broken a rule and shouldn’t have, but that she had not violated any law that she would be charged with a crime for. The FBI, after a year long investigation cleared her Tuesday. It was a lot to do over nothing really. The GOP and Trump will misrepresent it and call it rigged and that’s bull corn. The head of the FBI is a Republican appointed by George W.*****Well folks, I have to get out of here.. As I end this, our internet service is down again. I fear the paper might be late. Thanks for your time. Take care and God bless