Posted by : admin | On : May 30, 2009

By Britt Thompson and Amanda Miles Thompson

From The Malakoff News
Friday, May 29, 1952

The Rev. K. A. Ecklebarger, pastor of the First Baptist Church at Buhl, Idaho, arrived in the city on Tuesday to fulfill his preaching engagement for the summer revival campaign at the First Baptist Church.

The visiting minister, who conducted the meeting



Posted by : admin | On : May 29, 2009

By Emily Lundy
Special to The News
Greener and prettier has Trinidad never been in a long time. And some rain continues to fall on us. Bucky Butler says the lake above us is full.

The Ardoins have left for Lousiana reportedly. Papa Joe loves it there.

Matt Green, the former superintendent’s son in Amarillo, is having some rough times with his intestinal ailment. We wish him the right treatment for a comfortable life.

Kaylee Callahan and Katie Newsome represent THS as the top honor students well. They are two blondes with brains and talent. Each has contributed time to her school in activities and club activities. They both choose college in their future and have always been respectful and grateful for their families and opportunities. We hope the path of life takes them where they want to go.

Avon Lane in Key Estates is having vision problems again as she did last year. She is seeing two specialists. She is the lady who honors people with angel-food cakes and also has dinners for special reason for no particular reason. Her husband is superintendent of Mildred Schools.

For the seniors of 2009 my advice is usually the same: Cross those tracks or Highway 31 soon after graduation even if by commuting to work or school. Go somewhere else to live for a while; then when it’s right, come back to stay or always to visit. Good luck for a successful life, one where you stand proud of what you do, no matter how menial or lofty. It takes us all to make the world livable. No job is too small if it helps others and is lawful.

Familiar and new names are on our list of friends and family who need our prayers or sympathy or concern: Evelyn Beavers, Raymond Tubbs, Lena Goodenough, Toni Steel, Joel Ardoin, Joe Mays, Eugene Berry, Loretta Fugate, Chester Bradley, Peggy Miller, Flora Robb, Harding Airheart, Joe Greenhaw, Thelma Smith, twins Dylan and Layne Dietches in Kyle, Texas, Mary Lou Hines, Billie Davis Westmoreland, Pat Jackson, John Henry Johnson, Hilah Gibs of Mabank; those in assisted or full care living-Martha Perry, Fran Edgar, Sam (Mrs.) Stiff, Joe Moser, Lawrence Moser, Eleanor Massey, Lorene Jackson, Roberta Staples, Gertrude Stanfield, Russell and Cecil Earl Yates, Geraldine Stanfield, Wretha Barfoot.

Remember graduation tonight (Friday, May 29) in the Trojan Dome at 7 p.m.

Too, pray for the safety of our soldiers. Bringing them home alive is what we all wish for, whenever they do come.

Congratulations to those who won spots of leadership in the May election. We want to keep our little community going; there is still hope for a better tomorrow in economics.



Posted by : admin | On : May 29, 2009

When I hear people extol the wonders of free market capitalism, as Senator DeMint (Rep-SC) did April 21, 2009, on the floor of the Senate, I look for the axioms of their economic model; I look in vain.
Economic models tend to leave out the extremes of population and greed that we are now dealing with.
The question is: What is the degree of greed that threatens the entire economy? It seems to me that greed for wealth and fame sort of bumbled along for quite a while and then it burst out leaving devastation in its wake.
There was a scandal here, a scandal there; Tea Pot Dome, the Black Sox, the Mafia; annoying but nothing society couldn’t handle. But then it was breaking out everywhere; Enron, WorldCom, A.I.G., Madoff, sub-prime loans, Senator Stevens, the list goes on and on, and the foundation of the economy became Swiss cheese.
I am reminded of locusts. You get locusts, we would get them in the summer, but it’s no big deal. Until one year it is a big deal, the locusts swarm and they leave the fields behind them barren.
Greed for wealth and greed for power have always been with us and greed for power has historically been the most able to collapse whole societies.
Presently we are observing greed for wealth take its place in the sun. While power usually comes with money, in the current situation power seems to take second place to money.
I was watching the Miss USA Pageant the other evening. I couldn’t help noticing the difference between the talents Miss USA had to display and the talents Miss Navajo Nation had to show the judges. For example one skill that the Navajo women had to have that Miss USA contestants didn’t have to master was killing and dressing out a goat.
I watched a program about “diversity.” “Diversity” is a buzz word that I hear mentioned a lot on television.
But what kind of Diversity is meant. Racially diverse? Economically diverse? Hair color diverse?
There is something kind of weird about hair color.
Certainly if I have a group with one person in it, everyone in the group has the same color hair. This is true for any group with one person in it. Suppose that every group having four people in it has the same color hair. Now I consider any group of five people.
I take one person from the group, say Ed, and have him stand in the corner. Now I have four people left and since I am assuming everybody in a group of four people has the same color hair, these four people have the same color hair, say red. I put Ed back in the group and put Sam in the corner. Ed is now in a group of four people who must all have the same color hair, which must be red.
So if every group of four people has the same color hair, then every group of five people has the same color hair. Using this idea, if every group of five people has the same color hair, then every group of six people must have the same color hair. If every group of one person has the same color hair, which is obviously true, so must very group of two people. If every group of two people has the same color hair then every group of three people has the same color hair. Proceeding one step at a time it must be that every group of 6 billion people has the same color hair. But all the people on Earth are a group of 6 billion people so all the people on Earth have the same color hair.
This is a little known fact of the hair styling trade.
Thus Spake the Old Fogy, thinking that truth is stranger than fiction.



Posted by : admin | On : May 29, 2009

A young executive was preparing to leave the office late one evening when he found the CEO standing in front of a shredder with a piece of paper in his hand. “This is a very sensitive and important document,” said the CEO, “and my secretary has gone for the day. Can you get this thing to work for me?” – “Certainly,” said the young executive eagerly. He turned on the machine, inserted the paper and pressed the start button. “Excellent! Thank you!” said the CEO, as his paper disappeared inside the shredding machine, “I just need one copy



Posted by : admin | On : May 29, 2009

Services for infant Damon Deshay Smith, Jr., 4 months old, are scheduled for 11 a.m. Saturday, May 23, 2009, at Macedonia Church in Caney City with the Rev. La Wanda Robertson and Minister Shadenia Jones officiating. Interment followed at Steen Cemetery.

Damon was born Jan. 13, 2009, to parents Damony Deshay Smith, Sr., and Brenda Joyce Richardson. He passed away Sunday, May 17, 2009, at East Texas Medical Center in Athens.

He was preceded in death by maternal grandmother, Janie Richardson, in 2003.

Survivors include parents, Damon Deshay Smith, Sr., and Brenda Joyce Richardson of Athens; maternal great-grandmother, Anita Smith of Malakoff; maternal grandfather, Isom Richardson of Caney City; paternal grandfather, Roger Tarver of Malakoff; paternal grandparents, Shelia and Arthur Smith-Thomas of Malakoff; brothers, Devarrius Richardson of Athens, Deondre Richardson of Athens; sisters, Jamica King of Birmingham, Ala., Jamia King of Birmingham, Ala., Diajianna Richardson of Athens; uncles, Jermichael Hart of Malakoff, Isom Richardson, Jr., of Malakoff; aunt, Janice Richardson of Malakoff.



Posted by : admin | On : May 29, 2009

Services for Billy Don Harris were held Friday, May 22, 2009, at First Assembly of God Church in Malakoff. Mr. Harris was born in Gilmer, Texas, Nov. 26, 1945, and passed away May 19, 2009, in Dallas. Interment was in Post Oak Cemetery in Malakoff, under the direction of Tomlinson Funeral Home of Malakoff.

He lived in Sunnyvale, Texas, before moving to Emory, where he lived for the last 10 years. He enjoyed farming.
He was preceded in death by his parents, James Parker and Salley Harris, and his wife of 40 years, Patricia, in 2005.

He is survived by a very special love, Sherry Wright of Frisco, Texas; son, Jimmy Harris and wife Teresa of Royse City, Texas; daughter, Tammy and husband Jim Jenkins of Grand Prairie, Texas; daughter, Stacy and husband Richard Wiegel of Forney; brother, Red Harris and wife Vera of Sunnyvale, Texas; sisters, Lawana Bryant of Bridgeport, Texas, Sue Richardson of Diana, Texas, Shirley McDonald of Emory, Texas, Eva Fleming of Garland, Texas; and six grandchildren.



Posted by : admin | On : May 29, 2009

Memorial services for Tommy Lee Carter, 57, of Cross Roads, are pending with Carroll-Lehr Funeral Home, Athens.

Mr. Carter passed away Wednesday, May 20, 2009, in Athens.
He was born July 19, 1951, to Eugene and Louise Hope Carter in Malakoff. He attended Malakoff High School and enlisted in the US Army after graduation.

Upon discharge from the Army, he went to work as a master carpenter in Tomball. He moved to Cross Roads in 2007.
Survivors include brothers, Fred Carter and Gary Carter; sister, Sherry Carter Trammell; niece, Jennifer Hart; nephew, Jason Hardin; niece and husband, Mr. and Mrs. Robert Griffith; chosen family Aaron Thompson, Kathy Couch, Bobby and Kodi Carter, Alisha Pierce, Bridget Pierce, numerous nephews and nieces.

If desired, you may sign the guest register or leave a message of condolence for the family at



Posted by : admin | On : May 29, 2009

By Michael V. Hannigan

To borrow a phrase: The worth of a pile of rubble is in the eye of the beholder.

In this case, we are talking about a big, neat pile of rubble that could be worth a lot of money to taxpayers. Or a big, random pile of refuse that could pose a health risk to taxpayers. It depends on who is doing the beholding.
Late last week, Athens attorney Brian Schmidt delivered a letter to Henderson County Judge David Holstein’s office complaining about a large pile of concrete rubble located on land owned by the county between The Lindy Mall and Spring Creek Mobile Home Park in Malakoff. {{more}}

Schmidt, who represents Ray and Janet Brown, owners of The Lindy Mall, wrote, “… It is my belief that the manner in which the county is dumping material on this land poses a danger to the health, safety and welfare of the citizens of Henderson County. While the county over the years has used the property in various acceptable ways, the volume of materials … over the last several years has created a public and private nuisance to the surrounding landowners. Furthermore, the manner in which the county is dumping these materials has created a substantial health and safety risk that threatens to become a liability to the taxpayers of Henderson County.”

Pct. 1 Commissioner Joe Hall is in charge of the site and he admits there is a lot of concrete and construction rubble right now. Hall, however, sees that as a good thing for the taxpayers of Henderson County.

He said the material, which came mostly from the demolition of the Malakoff Middle School auditorium earlier this year, is good for filling in washouts around culverts.

“That is what this is so valuable for,” he said, adding the precinct doesn’t have anything else as cost effective it could use to prevent those washouts.

“The only other choice is to pour concrete,” he said. “You know we can’t afford that.”

Plus, he said, ground up the material is “the best road base you can get.”

Hall pointed to a pile of base rock the county purchased and said it cost about $16 a ton.

“And you could put a couple of tons in a pickup,” he said.
Once the rubble is ground up, Hall said, the county will hopefully have a large supply of base rock at about $8 per ton. Hall had a contractor measuring the pile on Tuesday to come up with an estimate for grinding the pile.

Hall said Commissioner Wade McKinney has used some of the material and said Commissioner Ronny Lawrence has asked for some.

“Talk to other commissioners, this stuff is valuable,” he said. “To other people it’s junk, it’s worthless; but to me it is beautiful.”

Dangerous Dust?
Schmidt doesn’t share the commissioner’s enthusiasm. He wrote that the material at the site is causing a large amount of dust “creating respiratory issues for local residents, business owners and customers.”

In his letter, he writes that concrete dust, or the Silica from it, has the potential to be very harmful, referencing a report from the United States Department of Labor Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA).

To limit the hazard, Schmidt’s clients have asked Hall to water down the rubble pile.

“Mr. Brown has previously requested that Commissioner Hall assist the surrounding area by wetting the pile when the conditions for swirling dust are ripe. Commissioner Hall has repeatedly declined to do so,” Schmidt wrote.

Hall said the dust doesn’t come from the pile of concrete rubble. Instead, he said it comes from a pile of sand the county uses in culvert installations which was also on the site. That pile has since been moved to reduce the dust at The Lindy Mall, Hall said.

And about wetting down the pile?

“If I get that wet out there how many trucks do you think I could get in and out without burying one up to the axle?” Hall asked. “Common sense dictates we couldn’t do that.”
Schmidt additionally pointed out that prior to demolition, the Malakoff Middle School auditorium went through asbestos abatement. By referencing a MMS construction report which included instructions for if asbestos became “crumbled, pulverized, or reduced to powder,” Schmidt suggests that asbestos could be part of the Pct. 1 rubble pile.

“Although it is my understanding that the remnants of the building were to be delivered to an approved waste site in Corsicana,” he wrote, “they were instead dumped on the county property apparently at the request of Commissioner Hall.”

Hall doesn’t deny accepting the rubble. Hall said the contractor asked him if he wanted the material, and he gladly said yes.

As for the asbestos, Hall said, “(Schmidt) said it himself, it was abated.”

MISD Superintendent Dr. John Spies verified this week that the agreement which sent the remnants the auditorium to the county site was between Hall and the contractor, but did not include the school district.

Fences and Fires
Another issue for opponents of the pile is easy access. Up until a month ago, the pile sat out in the open. Since then, Hall has built a barbed wire fence around the 1.9-acre site.

Hall, however, had previously promised to erect a 6-foot chain link fence around the site.

“By Commissioner Hall announcing at a public meeting that he intended on taking specific remedial measure to address this safety issue (building the fence), then declining to take those remedial measure because of the cost involved, I believe the taxpayers of Henderson County have now been exposed to a great deal of potential lia bility should a curious child actually be injured on this property,” Schmidt wrote in his letter.

Hall said he understands the way his opponents feel, but added he didn’t realize the cost involved when he first suggested a chain link fence. The bid for a chain link fence came back at more than $25,000.

“I can’t do that,” he said. “If I would have done that, other people in the precinct would have said, ‘What in the world did you spend that money for!'”

Hall said the barbed wire fence makes the necessary point.
“The State of Texas says since I built that fence, my liability ends,” he said, “because (trespassers) have to physically cross that fence to get on government property.”

As for kids, Hall said, “Parents are responsible for their children,” adding that children from the mobile home park had not caused any problems for the precinct.

The pile of rubble isn’t the only contentious issue standing between the neighbors, there is also the burning.

“Another recent development with regard to the air quality in the area has been Precinct 1’s decision to begin burning plastic barrels, railroad ties and other unknown materials on the property wherein the precinct barn is located,” Schmidt wrote. “The burning of these hazardous materials has, to my knowledge, commenced only since my clients and others in the area began expressing concern about the dust that the previously referenced pile generates.”

Hall admits he has had to start burning brush in the precinct yard, but said it didn’t have anything to do with the controversy over the rubble pile. Instead, he said, the site where the precinct used to burn brush has been closed to him.

Pct. 1 workers collect brush in backhoes and trucks from the side of the road and while clearing drainage ditches, Hall said. In addition, up until this month Hall allowed area residents using the county dump at the back end of the precinct yard to stack their brush on the burn pile.

Hall said county workers are instructed to take out all the plastic and creosote railroad ties before burning, but admitted they didn’t always get everything.

In addition, area residents weren’t separating out plastic from the burn pile so Hall put an end to that practice. He is afraid that will just cause another problem, however.
“You know where we are going to find that brush now, don’t you?” he asked. “The side of the road.”

Hall said he has looked into buying a piece of land to store the rubble and use as a burning site, but said he hasn’t been about to find a suitable location.
In the meantime he has erected a dirt berm along the precinct yard fence to block the site of the yard from the mobile home park.

The Process
So what do opponents of the rubble site want? According to Schmidt, they want Commissioner’s Court to immediately:
1. Take action to remove the pile of concrete, rebar wire, dirt and other unknown materials that has accumulated on this property.

2. Commission an environmental impact study on this site so that it might possibly be determined what the short-term and long-term ramifications are for the property and the surrounding area.

3. Build a fence suitable to ensure the safety of the children in the area as the county makes arrangements to safely dispose of or store the existing material.

4. Install a water-based dust control system as the county makes arrangements to safely dispose of or store the existing material.

“I believe that our government has a responsibility to its citizens to be good stewards of the land it procures,” Schmidt wrote.

In an interview this week, Schmidt said the Browns have not filed a lawsuit against the county and want to deal with the problem without going to court.

Hall, however, said that when the Browns brought in an attorney he had no choice but to refer the entire matter to the county’s attorneys.

“I talked to those people until they started talking lawyers and lawsuit,” Hall said. “I’ve learned if they say anything about attorneys my conversation is ended. It’s a tough lesson that cost me $15,000 to learn.”

In 2006, Hall was indicted for Abuse of Official Capacity for working on a church parking lot. In the end, Hall was not prosecuted, but the experience personally cost him more than $15,000. He said he is a little more cautious now when attorneys get involved.

NEXT WEEK: Commissioner’s Court, Malakoff City Council, and City Ordinance 102.



Posted by : admin | On : May 29, 2009

By Michael V. Hannigan

Changes are coming to Malakoff Middle School.

Tuesday night, the Malakoff ISD Board of Trustees accepted the recommendation of Superintendent Dr. John Spies to elevate MMS Assistant Principal Quintin Watkins to Interim Principal.

Watkins will take the place of outgoing principal George Hull. Athens ISD announced last week that Hull will be taking a position at Athens High School as assistant principal. {{more}}

“Malakoff ISD is indebted to Mr. Hull for the 10 years of leadership he has provided as the middle school principal,” Spies said Tuesday night. “The district wishes him success in his new endeavors.”

Watkins joined MISD two months ago as assistant principal, coming to Malakoff from Bruceville-Eddy ISD where she was the director of student services. Watkins spent five years at Bruceville-Eddy and also served as the assistant principal at the high school there.

The Cedar Creek Lake area is home to the Watkins family, however. Quintin Watkins spent six years at Mabank ISD and her husband, Brent, used to be a coach at Malakoff High School, a role he will be reprising next year.

“I am looking forward to working at Malakoff Middle School next year,” said Mrs. Watkins. “My husband and I are excited to be back home. Education has been my lifework for 23 years, and I truly look forward to every new year.”

The couple has two children, Sarah Marie, 19, who is pursuing a nursing degree, and son Skyler, 22, who is working on an education degree at Texas A&M.

Also Tuesday night, School Board President Rick Vieregge announced the school board committees for the next year.
Homer Ray Trimble, who is the board secretary this year, will be the chairman of the Facilities Committee. Trustees Belinda Brownlow and Clyde Tinsley will also serve on the committee.

Jan Shelton, who is the board vice president this year, will be the chairman of the Policy Committee. Trustees Todd LaRue and Pat Smith will also serve on the committee.



Posted by : admin | On : May 29, 2009

From Staff Reports

If you are going to file a protest against the valuation of your property, the deadline is fast approaching.
Property assessment notices went out the beginning of May to property owners whose property valuation changed significantly.

Monday, June 1, is the deadline to file a written protest with the county.

The deadline is usually May 31, but since that is a Sunday, it extends to the next business day, according to the protest form. {{more}}

Obtain a protest form at the County Appraisal Office, or print one off the Internet at
Once there select a county (such as Henderson or Kaufman) then the tab across the top that says “Forms.”

A long list comes up, so select the third one from the top which says “ARB-Appraisal Review Board forms” and then choose the first in the list – “Notice of Protest.” And print it out.

The form is standard and used by all counties in the state of Texas.

Be sure to fill in your telephone number, as the appraisal district office will call to see what can be worked out over the phone, which may save you a date before the review board, though a date with the board is automatically assigned when your protest is received.

Those protesting valuations of commercial property have 30 days from the date of the notice to file a protest.