Feb

01

Posted by : admin | On : February 1, 2018

Sarah Nicole Henderson
The News Staff Reports
ATHENS–Sarah Nicole Henderson, the mother who stands accused of murdering her two young daughters, pleaded not guilty to all charges during her first court appearance last Friday in the 392nd District Court, under Judge Scott McKee. The Henderson County Grand Jury returned indictments against Henderson for multiple charges including two counts of Capital Murder of a child under ten years of age, Attempted Murder, and Assault on a Public Servant.
A District Court Judge set her bonds at one million each on the two capital cases along with $50,000 each on the other two.
Henderson was arrested on Nov. 2, 2017 at her home in Indian Oak Harbor Subdivision for the murder of her two young daughters, ages 5 and 7, by shooting them in the head with a firearm. It was also alleged that she attempted to shoot her husband as well, resulting in the attempted murder charge.
The Assault on a Public Servant arose two days later while Henderson was being held in the Henderson County Jail, where she is accused of striking a detention officer while he was attempting to release her from restraint.
Henderson is being represented by two attorneys, Steve Green and John Youngblood. Judge Scott McKee issued a gag order and gave the attorneys a trial management order which included a trial date and other dates pertinent to proceeding to trial.
If convicted of capital murder, Sarah Henderson could face life in prison without the possibility of parole or the death penalty. Henderson remains in the Henderson County Jail.

Feb

01

Posted by : admin | On : February 1, 2018

IMG_6728 TR BB #15 CMYK

By Bodey Cooper
The News Staff Writer
TRINIDAD–The Trinidad Trojans’ varsity basketball squad fell on hard times as they lost to an explosive Slocum Mustangs’ team on Friday night.
The Mustangs were all over the Trojans immediately, forcing Trinidad Coach Bo Martin to call a timeout just :23 into the first quarter.
The Mustangs continued their tear with a 16-0 run in the first before the Trojans finally got on the board, courtesy of a basket by Antywon Shofner.
The Trojans would add two more points but trailed 27-4 after a tough start to the game.
The Trojans tacked on just four more points in the second quarter to head into halftime trailing the Mustangs 41-8.
The Mustangs outscored the Trojans 13-4 in the third quarter to take a 54-12 lead into the final eight minutes of regulation.
The Trojans finished off the contest with five points in the fourth quarter, including the last two by Demajeigh Hampton, on their way to a 57-17 loss on their home court.
The Trojans are at home Friday, Feb. 2 on Groundhog Day, but are hoping they don’t have a repeat performance as they face Oakwood at 7:30 p.m. at home.

Feb

01

Posted by : admin | On : February 1, 2018

Lance Gooden
By Pearl Cantrell
The News Staff Writer
ATHENS–A Republican candidates’ forum held at the Senior Center in Athens Monday drew a crowd of the party faithful to hear from filers for the March Primary Election. Early voting begins on Feb. 20 and the deadline to register to vote is Monday, Feb. 5.
Of the nine Republicans running for Congress to replace retiring Jeb Hensarling only Lance Gooden showed up to greet voters in U.S. Representative District 5. Gooden noted how very different the responses are in Dallas County on the subjects of “our rural values of gun rights, freedom from excessive taxation and banning sanctuary cities.”
“I will always have an open-door policy when I represent you in Washington, D.C.,” Gooden said. “Congressmen often get lost in D.C. That won’t happen when I’m in office,” he said, referring to their dis-attachment from the people they came to serve.
The other eight office seekers for District 5 in the House of Representatives are Bunni Pounds, Charles Lingerfelt, Dan Wood, Danny Campbell, David Williams, Sam Deen, Jason Wright and Kenneth Sheets, who were represented by their supporters with brochures and information.
Next up were candidates for the state house, including former officeholder Dr. Stuart Spitzer, retired Army colonel Earl Brunner, school board trustees Keith Bell and Ashley McKee.
Spitzer said his former experience at the State House and a career of holding people’s lives in his hands as a doctor qualifies him to analyze the state’s problems, diagnose the precise malfunction and develop a solution process to return the body politic to normal stasis. Brunner said his experience as both an intelligence officer and military aviator gives him the unique perspective to think and act decisively. Keith Bell said his years in public service on the board of Forney ISD, overseeing massive budgets and business acumen as an electric contractor make him the man to attack the inequities of school finance. As a Forney ISD Trustee and businessman: “I understand budgets and will make public education a priority of state spending.”
As an attorney, McKee pointed out that she represents others on a daily basis in hospitals, courtrooms, board rooms, school boards and when things are going south in a hurry. “I know where people are struggling and I’m really good at representing my clients.” She listed safety, closing down the border, public education and tax relief as the top issues the state faces and said they are all connected. “Every year, the money going toward public education becomes less and less. And with expected growth, these problems are going to get bigger, requiring critical thinking and people who problem-solve for a living and action,” she said. “I have the know-how, conviction and energy to get it done.”
Bell said he’s the one to make the state prioritize public education. Twenty years on the school board has given him a thorough understanding of school finance, he said. Secondly, he means to develop a workforce through public education that is ready to meet the needs of business. “As a businessman, I know more about what the job market needs in the way of skilled and educated work force, better than anyone,” he said. As part of the Texas License Safety Board, he told how in 2004 he became part of the process of getting a bill passed. “I have the experience to make it happen,” he said.
Brunner referred to the military acronym KISS in summing up his top issues will be those that increase the quality of life for all Texans, especially teachers, first responders and veterans. “When you provide more cashflow into the hands of public servants, it will have a positive effect in the economy,” he said.
Candidates for County Judge pitted experience against fresh approaches. Jeff Weinstein, a former assistant district attorney, businessman and law firm owner said Henderson County needs an Emergency Operations Center and upgrades for radio technology, especially for fire departments and mobile medical technicians. More needs to be done to decrease juvenile crime and drug use in the county, promising a 10 percent reduction his first year in office and a 25 percent reduction over the next four years with him at the helm – all without raising taxes, he said.
New father and 20-year county commissioner Wade McKinney addressed the need for better communications for first responders throughout the county as a challenge the East Texas Council of Governments had been working on through some failed attempts and announced a program is coming into Henderson County. He pointed out the many cost-saving steps the county has taken under his watch to get it to debt-free status today, while doubling the investment in the sheriff’s office from $5,000,000 to $10,000,000 over the last 12 years.
Weinstein presented facts from his bus tour about what bothers people in the county most. People are concerned about safety, want good paying jobs and high-speed internet, he said, noting that Trump lately announced he was going to make high speed internet available in rural America. “It’s like we’re listening to the same people,” he said.
All three candidates for McKinney’s Precinct 2 Commissioner seat weighed in. Josh Bardwell pointed to his 13 years working first under Commissioner Ronny Lawrence and then McKinney to spell out his expertise with road construction, its materials and the variables involved to get the best bang for the buck. David Conner, a licensed mechanic, said he’s built and maintained a few roads in his career and is experienced with the equipment needed to get the job done. Scott Tuley said his business experience and role on the Mabank ISD school board has prepared him to seek more grant funding for roads. As a distributor for the Dallas Morning News and a volunteer tanker driver for a local fire department, he said he knows some county roads are in really bad shape. “Everything I’ve been involved with, I’ve been a leader,” he said.
Conner stressed that as commissioner he would be open to everybody and would work with the sheriff to clean up crime in this area. He said he is also concerned for radio communications for first responders and would look to counties who have gone through these challenges to learn from their experience.
Bardwell said his priority is supporting law enforcement to fight illegal drug use, followed by keeping taxes low for a pay-as-we-go method and road improvements built on value and knowhow.
Precinct 5 Justice of the Peace Linda Brownlow and challenger Patrick Gresham agreed that listening to the common man who gets his “day in court” is the job of a justice of the peace and on the nature of the job being on-call 24-7 while keeping a 40-hour per week office hours. Gresham presented his long career in ministry working with both adults and youth as the best experience for doing the job. While Brownlow said doing the job is her qualification.
Brownlow said she has a very capable office manager to oversee the insurance agency she inherited from her father, not requiring time taken away from her duties as judge. Gresham said, if he were elected his church fully supports his stepping away from ministry to fulfill his duties.
Gresham says in his experience responding to unattended deaths will likely be the most difficult part of being judge. Seeing people in their very worst, neediest moments takes infinite patience and kindness. He feels his strongest qualifications are his patience and even temperament.
Brownlow said she finds arraignments the most difficult because she has their lives in her hands.
JP 2 Kevin Pollock said he shows respect to all parties which come before him and he follows the law. “But don’t take my word for it,” he said. “Ask anyone how it is in the JP2 court and you’ll get your answer.” His opponent former JP Dale Blaylock was not in attendance.
Lastly, Precinct 4 Commissioner Ken Geeslin, facing Kelly Harris, added his bits to round out the information about the county and the office, listing “Taxes, taxes and taxes” as the priorities with most voters. He pointed out that though the county collects the taxes on behalf of all the taxing entities, its portion is significant for its smallness comparatively. “The county picks off 48 cents per $100 of property value, of which 8.3 cents goes to maintaining the roads,” he said. “Wow!! Your commissioners sure are doing a hell of a good job to maintain roads on 8.3 cents, he said tongue-in-cheek. He compared that to the 12 cents taxpayers contribute to the community college and the lion’s share to local public schools.
He also said in Precinct 4 over the last seven years he’s been in office the country replaced one mile of culverts and 100 miles of roads were upgraded.
Geeslin listed eradicating drug use and child and elder abuse as a second priority of his campaign. He also touched upon economic development and infrastructure (radio/telecommunications). His background is in various areas of the telecommunications industry. That coupled with 22 years of military service; eight active in the U.S.A.F. and the rest with the CD and Texas Air National Guard “helps me find the devil in the details,” he said.
The Christian Life Center Church in Gun Barrel City is hosting a candidates’ meet and greet followed by an address by Rafael Cruz, father of Texas Senator Ted Cruz, starting at 6 p.m. and ending at 8 p.m., Tuesday, Feb. 6. The program is sponsored by Concerned Citizens in Christ.

Feb

01

Posted by : admin | On : February 1, 2018

IMG_6700 TR GBB #10 CMYK
By Bodey Cooper
The News Staff Writer
TRINIDAD–The Trinidad Lady Trojans struggled against the explosive offense of the Slocum Lady Mustangs as they lost their district contest Friday night at home.
The Lady Mustangs jumped out to an early 4-1 lead over the Lady Trojans.
They increased their lead to 12-1 after an 8-0 run before Erica Airheart answered with a basket of her own to make it a 12-3 deficit.
Tori Moody knocked down both free throws, followed up by a layup on a nice pass from Erica Airheart to cut the Lady Mustangs lead to 14-8.
Lady Trojans Coach Bo Martin picked up a technical foul with 2:18 remaining in the first quarter after a disagreement on some questionable calls early in the first few minutes of the contest.
The Lady Mustangs ended the first quarter on a 12-0 run to take a 26-8 lead into the second quarter.
Hallie Airheart went 1/2 from the line to cut the deficit to 31-12. Eric Airheart added another free throw to make it a 34-14 contest.
Hallie Airheart picked up the and-1 minus the free throw to cut the deficit to 50-20 heading into halftime.
The Lady Trojans added just 13 more points in the second half on their way to a 78-33 loss to the Lady Mustangs.
The Lady Trojans pick back up Friday, Feb. 2 at home as they face Oakwood starting at 6 p.m.

Jan

31

Posted by : admin | On : January 31, 2018

Knight obit

Sylvia Genova Norris Knight nee Wheeler was born Feb. 22, 1923 in Lark Harbour, Newfoundland to Janet Sheppard and William Wheeler. She passed away peacefully into the loving arms of her savior Jan. 27, 2018 in Forney surrounded by her family.
Sylvia spent many hours serving her community in Tool volunteering at church, East Texas Medical Center in Athens and The Library at Cedar Creek Lake.
She was a faithful member of The Women’s Club and Literary Club at Cedar Creek Lake and Order of the Eastern Star. She cared for many friends and neighbors during times of sickness and grief. She will forever be remembered for her sense of humor and loving devotion to her family and friends.
Sylvia is survived by her daughters Kathy Tucker and spouse Alan, Janet Norris and spouse Peter Baranowski, grandchildren Stephanie Schultz and spouse Jeff, Jennifer Steck, Daniel Gee and spouse Cristina, Melissa Hernandez and spouse Tony, great-grandchildren Jon Schultz, Lucas, Madeline, John and Ethan Steck, Tyler Hernandez, Dustin and Noah Gee, brothers and sisters Bill Wheeler and spouse Shirley, Garry Wheeler, Joan Bryant and spouse Eli and Irene Sheppard and spouse Ron.
In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to The Library at Cedar Creek Lake, 410 E. Cedar Creek Parkway, Seven Points, Texas 75143 or the charity of your choice.

Jan

26

Posted by : admin | On : January 26, 2018

McDonald Obit

On Jan. 20, 2018 Ora Dell McDonald was welcomed into Heaven by her family of Angels.
Funeral services were held Jan. 25, 2018 in the chapel followed by a graveside service at Baker Cemetery.
She was born Ora Dell Garland Jan. 29, 1935 in Lawton, Okla., to Clarence Garland and Patlonie (Reaves) Taylor.
Her father left the family when Ora was young and her mother met and married Ely Taylor who Ora loved as more than a step-father.
Ora lived much of her life in Dallas where she met her husband, Marvin Eugene McDonald, marrying him Nov. 11, 1953. They had two children together Dennis Perry McDonald and Lori D’Ann McDonald. They lived in Dallas on Oak Hill Circle until moving to Kemp in 1965 where they stayed while their house was being built in what would later become Seven Points.
Over her career, Ora worked for Liberty Insurance in Dallas, the State Fair of Texas, Gibson’s in Seven Points, Mabank Nursing Home and as a private caregiver. She was a devout Baptist attending Piedmont Baptist Church in Pleasant Grove then Calvary Baptist Church in Tolosa, where she was well known for her card ministry. She had everyone’s addresses and for years sent cards to church and family members for any and all occasions including; birthdays, get well, weddings, babies or just “thinking of you.” She received a special plaque from Calvary for this service.
She served on the Seven Points VFD Ladies Auxiliary from its start in the 60s. She helped with picnic fundraisers, Bingo concessions and any other support needed during the early years of the VFD.
She was an avid lover of country music and especially Waylon Jennings, who she saw many times in concert and had every album he ever released. If asked what her greatest accomplishment in life was, she would say, making sure her children, grandchildren and great-grandchildren knew the importance of having Jesus Christ as their Lord and Savior. She was a bright light in a dark world to all who met her.
Ora was preceded in death by her husband of 40 years M.E. McDonald, mother, father and step-father, daughter-in-law Cindy McDonald, brothers Jack Garland, Sr. and Jerry Garland, Sr., in-laws Roy, Ray, Ruby, Ruth, Mozelle, Preston, O’Dell, Duke, Jr., Jackie, Charlotte, Charlie, Dee and Tommy.
She is survived by her daughter D’Ann Martin of Waco, son Dennis McDonald and Freda of Trinidad, grandchildren Crystal Koller of Canton, Michelle Reed and Chase of Seven Points, Kandace Martin and Mike Chang of Waco, Daniele Garland of Texarkana, Delanna Foster of Ark., Lauren Garcia of Lubbock, Cody Hines and Anesia of Colo., Tina Killian and Brett of Mabank, great-grandchildren Dylon and Lane Koller, Chasity, Justin, Caleb and Jayden Reed, Marshall and Waylon McClure, Cayden and Zaylee Dell Chang, Kylie Killian, Nathaniel, Rachel and James Hines, Molly, Oliver and Stella Foster, Foster and Finleigh-Kay Garcia, great-great-grandson Evan Jace Koller, brother Bill Garland and Meja of Southlake, sisters-in-law Evelyn McDonald of Waco, Dorothy McDonald and Mozelle McDonald of Belton, best friend Shirley Cole of Fargo, N.D. and many more family and friends.
The family would like to say a special thank you to Melynda and Steve Ash, Janet and Stephen Neill and family for always being there to help when needed.
In lieu of flowers, donations can be made to the Seven Points VFD or Baylor Scott and White McClinton Cancer Center in Waco.
A personal tribute may be made online at www.andersonclayton.com.

Jan

26

Posted by : admin | On : January 26, 2018

Burson obit

Funeral services for Howard Ernest Burson were held Jan. 26, 2018 at Payne Springs United Methodist Church with Rev. Roy James officiating.
Howard was born April 25, 1928 in Wills Points and entered into eternal rest Jan. 17, 2018 at the age of 89.
Howard served in the United States Navy during the Korean War. He worked for the United States Postal Service and retired in 1967. Howard then was then employed as a census worker.
He loved picking up cans and recycling. Howard was a member of the Mesquite Masonic Lodge and was De Molay Dad with his sons in Mesquite. He was a member of Cedar Creek Lake Masonic Lodge #1431 and past Master of Cedar Creek Lake Lodge.
Howard served as Rainbow Dad several years and served on the Rainbow Board #369, was the last surviving chapter member of Gun Barrel City Eastern Star #1114 and was a past Patron. He was a Knights Templar for Taylor Commandery in Gun Barrel City and Chapter and Council in Gun Barrel City #455 Dale E. Miller. Howard was a 65 year member of the Masonic Lodge.
He was an exceptional man who will be missed by all who knew and loved him.
Howard was preceded in death by his parents, wife Norma Jean Burson, who passed in 1984, sons Ray Burson and Rex Burson, daughter Pat Vern, daughter-in-law Donna Burson and two brothers.
He is survived by his wife Connie Burson of Gun Barrel City, son Tim Balton of Homa, La., grandchildren Michael Vern, Bart Burson, Britt Burson, Jason Balton and Jackie Sutton, six great-grandchildren, step-daughter Shonnie Murphy, step-grandchildren Case Murphy and Kyler Murphy, two step-great-grandchildren, other loving family members and many more friends.
In lieu of flowers, the family requests that donations be made in Howard’s honor to Cedar Creek Mason Lodge #1431 in Gun Barrel City, Texas or Scottish Rite Hospital at (214) 559-7650 or www.scottishritehospital.com.
A personal tribute may be made online at www.eubankcedarcreek.com.

Jan

25

Posted by : admin | On : January 25, 2018

The News Staff Reports
ATHENS–The No. 19-ranked Athens Hornets survived a scare in the second half for a 77-68 victory over the Mexia Blackcats Tuesday in Athens.
The Hornets are 21-2 overall and 3-0 in District 18-4A play.
Athens is scheduled to be back in action Friday at Fairfield. The varsity will play around 7:30 p.m.
The Hornets have three more games at home this season.
Those games are against Palestine Jan. 30, a non-district contest against Brook Hill Feb. 6 and the season finale against Fairfield Feb. 13.
The game against Brook Hill is senior night as six seniors will play their final game.
Those players are Lyons, Koehler, Bowman, Alec Scott, Taylor and Adrian Givens.
The Blackcats are 20-5 and 1-3 in district play.
The two teams are scheduled to meet again Feb. 9 in Mexia.
Athens was led in scoring by senior Miles Koehler with 21 points.
Senior Gary Lyons had 20, Javiry Bowman had nine while Rowdy Godwin and Chris Taylor had eight each.
Mexia was led by junior Chris Mathews with 18 points.
Davion Carter had 13 while Jaden Proctor and Gary McQuirter had 11 each. Travion Carter had eight, Jaquay Martin had six and Katy Griffen had one point.
Athens held a 45-25 lead at halftime as they looked to be in control of the game.
The Hornets held a 64-44 lead near the end of the third quarter, before Mexia went on a 10-0 run to get to within 64-54.
Travion Carter hit a free throw with seven minutes remaining in regulation.
The first basket for the Hornets came on a rebound by Godwin with 6:20 remaining in the game.
The Blackcats then went on another run to cut the Athens lead to three at 66-63.
The run was capped off by a free throw from Mathews with 4:10 remaining.
Athens then extended the lead to seven with back-to-back layups from Taylor and Lyons with under three minutes left.
The Hornets were able to ice the game with two free throws by Taylor for the 77-68 finale.
In the first quarter, the two teams played a tight game as Athens took an 18-12 lead heading into the second.
The final basket came on a rebound basket by Lyons at the buzzer.
In the second, Athens was able to continue a 12-0 run for a 28-12 lead with just over five minutes left.
Mexia ended the run with a free throw by Proctor at the 4:59 mark of the first half.
The Hornets were 17-of-24 from the free throw line, compared to 11-of-20 for the Blackcats.

Jan

25

Posted by : admin | On : January 25, 2018

By Denise York
The News Staff Writer
LOG CABIN–After discussion at their regular meeting Jan. 18, Log Cabin City Council decided to amend their policy to charge for labor and use of machinery to install culverts for citizens. Previously, the landowner would pay for the culvert and the city would install it for free. Mayor Pro Tem Judy Bearden said she was not aware of how long the city had been installing culverts at no charge.
There was some confusion as to whether the city currently charges the $25 permit fee that is required. Mayor Nolan said that the permit fee does not come close to covering the cost of putting in a culvert. Councilman Chris Martin advised that they didn’t want just anyone installing a culvert since if it were done incorrectly, it could cause problems if waterflow wasn’t right.
Council approved charging for the culvert along with labor and use of equipment to install the culvert. If the city does the installation, the permit will be issued at no charge. If a landowner decides to contract with someone else to install the culvert, they would pay the $25 permit fee to cover inspection of the project to maintain city standards.
In other business, council members:
• discussed holding a Town Hall meeting and decided to hold a workshop to determine agenda, date and time.
• heard financial reports for month of December which left an ending balance of $63,510.74 in the General Fund, the Water Dept. had an ending balance $49,670.57, Infrastructure balance was $18,047.61 and the road fund balance was $46,067.90.
• heard court collections totaled $5,554.00, $3,109.01 of which was local.
• heard police report for December, 74 citations, 28 of which were warnings. They made four arrests, and had 140 calls for service.
• heard the Public Works Dept. had six leaks for the month of December and two lift station call outs.
• heard the Volunteer Fire Department had one grass fire, responded to 11 calls during December. For the year 2017, there were 216 calls for service, 88 of which were in the City of Log Cabin.

Jan

25

Posted by : admin | On : January 25, 2018

Marc Allison lightened
The News Staff Reports
ATHENS–Sheriff Botie Hillhouse is looking for a suspect in a “bloody, vicious assault” at a residence south of Chandler Tuesday night. The attack leaves a man and his girlfriend hospitalized.
Twenty-nine-year old Marc Anthony Allison, Jr. is wanted for aggravated assault with a deadly weapon family violence after he attacked his 27-year-old brother and his brother’s 25-year-old girlfriend with a galvanized steel pipe just before 6:30 p.m. A steel ratchet wrench was also found.
Hillhouse reports Allison was seen fleeing the scene. Two children were at the home during the attack.
His brother remains in the hospital. The woman was treated and released, Hillhouse said.
A squad of deputies descended on the residence in the Forest Grove Subdivision south of Chandler following two calls reporting the assaults.
“These victims had multiple wounds to the head and face in the bloody, vicious assault,” Hillhouse said. “We know who did this and we have alerted authorities across the region, state and nation to be on the lookout for him.”
Allison is believed to be traveling in a rented 2016 gray, Dodge minivan with Florida plates, the Sheriff said.
“The kids are OK, in the care of family members,” Hillhouse said.
If you know any information in reference to Marc Allison’s whereabouts, please notify the Henderson County Sheriff’s Office at (903) 675-5128.