Jun

08

Posted by : admin | On : June 8, 2017

By Erik Walsh
The News Staff Writer
ATHENS–Henderson County taxpayers are still paying for the 2007 crimes of Randall Mays after Commissioners approved payment of his capital murder case June 6.
Only Precinct 4 Commissioner Ken Geeslin opposed the payment, which totaled $21,514.47. This time the expense will go toward a mental evaluation for Mays, who was convicted in May of 2008 for killing Henderson County Sheriff’s Office Deputies Paul Habelt and Tony Ogburn.
Geeslin said he is upset the country is still paying for Mays’ crimes and wonders why the county tried to convict him of a capital offense.
Mays was sentenced to death for his crimes and scheduled for execution in March 2015, but the court of appeals delayed the process claiming Mays might not be competent to receive the death penalty. Henderson County picks up the resulting bills for the defense because it is a capital case.
Commissioners also approved the Keep Athens Beautiful and Light Up Athens organizations to decorate the Henderson County Courthouse and lawn this winter.
Dressing up the courthouse with festive lights and decorations is a tradition in Athens, but Commissioners are compelled to go through with the vote each year anyway due to a premise use policy put in place five years ago. According the Henderson County Judge Richard Sanders, the property isn’t a public forum, but individuals or private groups can be contracted to place displays on the property.
In other business, Commissioners approved:
• a payment of $19,000 from Sportsman’s Paradise Property Owners Association for materials to repave 1,200 feet of Mallard Street in Precinct 3;
• a right-of-way permit for the East Cedar Creek Fresh Water Supply Corporation;
• a request for a refund for overpayment of taxes from the Henderson County Tax Assessor/Collector in the amount of $8,586.45;
• payment of regular bills in the amount of $620,047.76.

Jun

08

Posted by : admin | On : June 8, 2017

The News Staff Reports
MABANK–It’s time to polish your boots and dust off your chaps. Western Week in Mabank is coming!
The rodeo begins on Friday night at 8 p.m. at the Alene and Andrew Gibbs Memorial Arena on Business 175 in Mabank. Each event is sponsored by the Mabank Volunteer Fire Department.
Rodeo events include calf roping, breakaway roping, saddle bronc, ranch bronc, steer wrestling, team roping, ladies’ open barrels, bull riding, bareback and calf scrambles.
The festivities this year begin on Saturday, June 17 with the Third Annual CASI Chili Cook-Off at the Mabank Pavilion. Registration time begins at 9 a.m., with bean turn-in time at noon and chili turn-in time at 1 p.m.
The Rodeo Queen Rehearsal will be held at the arena Monday, June 19 at 7 p.m. Rodeo queen nominees have already started pouring in, so the competition is bound to be tough this year.
Tuesday, June 20 is game day. The games begin at 6:30 p.m. with the ever-popular bed races set for 7:30 p.m.. Join the fun at the Mabank Pavilion. This is always a don’t-miss event.
Wednesday at 7 p.m. is the Queen’s Dinner at B-n-R Country.
Saturday is a jam-packed day with the Rodeo and Western Week Parade kicking off the events at 4 p.m. starting at the arena. Line-up begins at 3 p.m. .
The rodeo start time is 8 p.m. both Friday and Saturday, with a street dance after the rodeo Saturday evening at the pavilion.
Come celebrate the rich heritage of Mabank at the Rodeo and Western Week.

Jun

08

Posted by : admin | On : June 8, 2017

PfohSheltonCMYK

Special to The News
FLORENCE, Ala.–The Mabank High School duo of Justin Shelton of Seven Points,and Dakota Pfoh, of Eustace brought a five-bass limit to the scale Saturday weighing 17 pounds, seven ounces to win the 2017 TBF/FLW High School Fishing National Championship on Wheeler Lake in Florence, Ala. The win earned the team trophies, the title of national champions and each angler a $5,000 scholarship to their college of choice.
A field of 13 teams competed in the event, which launched from Joe Wheeler State Park in Rogersville. The Mabank High School duo won by an eight pound, two ounce margin over second place Harmony High School from St. Cloud, Fla., who weighed in five bass totaling nine pounds, five ounces. Mabank’s 17 pound, seven ounce limit was greater than any limit weighed in by the YETI FLW College Fishing National Championship teams that fished Wheeler for three days prior to the high school event.
The key to the Mabank pair’s win was one key area on the main lake of Wheeler that was loaded with bait. They camped on the spot all day long.
“We found one place in practice and kind of left it alone,” Shelton said. “We went in there today and wore them out.”
The spot was located near some large barge tie-offs. A ledge sloped up to a shell bed that was about five feet deep on top. Above the shell bed was a two-foot-deep island. Pfoh and Shelton positioned above the shell bed and cast out, dragging jigs back up the slope. They also circled the island, which produced a key fish but also gave the shell bed time to replenish. Each time they fished through the main spot again produced another keeper.
Their jigs were either black and blue or green-pumpkin and rigged with matching Strike King Rage Craw trailers. While the jig bite was key, according to Pfoh the team also caught a couple of fish on a Strike King 5XD crankbait and a Bass Pro Shops Speed Shad swimbait, Texas-rigged with a screw-in weight, which they worked through some grass.
Both anglers graduated in 2016 – the year they qualified for this championship. Shelton is attending community college and working, while focusing on his fishing. Pfoh is angling for a fishing career as well. Both hope to land on a YETI FLW College Fishing club.
Cole Thompson and Nick Cora, both of Harmony High School in St. Cloud, Fla, finished second in the tournament. Hunter Schneider and William Halbig from Lawrenceburg Tigers finished third, Cole Drummond and Piercen Lynch of South Caroline were fourth and Parker Davis and Aaron Stephens of Alabama rounded out the top five.

Jun

08

Posted by : admin | On : June 8, 2017

Log Cabin Boat Ramp
The News Staff Reports
LOG CABIN—The City of Log Cabin marks its 30th anniversary with a celebration at 10 a.m. this Saturday. The city will hold a dedication ceremony of the “Gene Bearden Memorial Boat Ramp” in the city park with a celebratory meal to follow at the Red Barn.
In the 1980s the town began as a retirement development called Log Cabin Estates, located between the Caney Creek and Clear Creek arms of Cedar Creek Reservoir. The community incorporated in 1987, and in 1990 the population was 487. That figure increased to 733 in 2000. Current population is estimated to be 717 according to the city’s website.
Roger Eugene “Papa Gene” Bearden served the community of Log Cabin as a member of the City Council, Mayor and Mayor Pro-tem. And this was all after retiring from Southwestern Bell Telephone with 30 years of service.
From all accounts, Bearden was a “bigger than life” character, dedicated to his faith, his family and his community. He was instrumental in the implementation of the city’s new water treatment and sewer system, water tower, community park, fishing pier, boat ramp and dock. He and his wife Judy were married for 45 years before his passing in April 2014 at the age of 66.

Jun

01

Posted by : admin | On : June 1, 2017

ATHENS–District Attorney Mark Hall reports that the Henderson County Grand Jury for the January-June term 2017 returned 35 True Bills May 17. In addition, six cases are indicted under seal. They include:
• Kawliger Lee Connelly, 41, Kemp, indicted for Possession of Controlled Substance (PCS).
• Cecil Ray Collum, 49, Malakoff, indicted for Bail Jumping and Failure to Appear.
• Walter Edward George, Jr, 49, Mabank, indicted for Assault.
• Jack Roy Thornton, 31, Kemp, indicted for Failure to Comply with Registration Requirements.
• Matthew Wayne Harris, 34, Athens, indicted for two counts of PCS.
• Matthew James Davis Moreland, 18, Athens, indicted for two counts of PCS.
• Ernest Raydell Smalley, 24, Athens, indicted for Manufacture or Delivery of a Controlled Substance in Penalty Group One (PG1).
• Bruneswick Lakeith Jones, 45, Athens, indicted for PCS.
• James Randolph Sockwell, 36, Athens, indicted for PCS.
• Gary William McCord, 23, Trinidad, indicted for PCS.
• Donald Preston Walsh, JR, 33, Tyler, indicted for Assault.
• Joshua Michael Ochoa, 38, Malakoff, indicted for PCS.
• Jared Isaac Galindo, 31, Gun Barrel City, indicted for Aggravated Assault.
• Amy Lynn Smith, 37, Trinidad, indicted for PCS.
• Ivory Lewis Brown, 70, Athens, indicted for Theft.
• Becky Lynn Kemp, 38, Brownsboro, indicted for PCS.
• Casey Wayne Housewright, 36, Trinidad, indicted for PCS.
• Justin Tyler Beamon, 25, Mabank, indicted for Unlawful Possession of Firearm and Aggravated Assault.
• Joseph Anthony Ask, 34, Athens, indicted for PCS.
• Angelina Francesca McNabb Ferguson, 44, Tyler, indicted for PCS.
• Jesus Salidavar (a.k.a. Armando Zavala), 33, Athens, indicted for Evading Arrest or Detention.
• David Wayne Sumrall, 46, Malakoff, indicted for Assault.
• Tray Daniel Walters, 24, Kemp, indicted for Evading Arrest or Detention.
• Cynthia Ann Sonoff Hodges, 46, Corsicana, indicted for PCS.
• Maurice Cartez Miller, 38, Athens, indicted for PCS. Callie Lanae Chalk, 25, Kemp, indicted for PCS.
• James Robert Huffaker, 58, Kemp, indicted for PCS.
• Bobbie Renee Carroll, 42, Kemp, indicted for Prohibited Substances and Items in Correctional Facility.
• Travis Brax Davis, 19, Murchison, indicted for Burglary.
• Roger Allen Coleman, Jr, 46, Mabank, indicted for Forgery.
• Javier Castaneda, Jr, 18, Athens, indicted for Burglary.
• Scotty Lemond Barker, 34, Athens, indicted for Burglary of Vehicle.
• Brad Wesley McGuire, 26, Athens, indicted for PCS.
• Christopher Emil Mireles, 33, Tyler, indicted for Aggravated Robbery, Unauthorized Use of Motor Vehicle, Burglary, three counts and Unauthorized Use of Motor Vehicle.
• Billy Ray Clark, 48, Athens, indicted for PCS.
• Tray Daniel Walters, 24, Kemp, indicted for Evading Arrest or Detention.

Jun

01

Posted by : admin | On : June 1, 2017

The News Staff Reports
CROSS ROADS–Eight Cross Roads High School softball players earned All-District honors in a meeting of District 20-2A/A coaches, including Gracyn Cunningham garnering Pitcher of the Year honors and her battery mate Bailee Stanfield earning the Class 2A Catcher of the Year award.
Being selected to the First Team All-District team was Hannah Latham and Marilyn Alvarado. Second team honors went to Lady Bobcats Haylie Wilcox, Sara Spivey and Macy Mattingly. Honorable Mention went to Bri Arden.
The Lady Bobcats also had seven players selected as Academic All-District members. Willcox, Spivey, Mattingly, Lathan, Alvarado, Stanfield and Cunningham each earned the distinction.
The Lady Bobcats made it to the Class 2A Regional Semifinals before losing to Joaquin 5-0 in a one-game playoff.

Jun

01

Posted by : admin | On : June 1, 2017

EthanSnowPitchingCMYK

The News Staff Reports
MALAKOFF–Ethan Snow led a group of five Tiger baseball players who earned a spot on the District 18-3A All-District Baseball team in a vote of district coaches at their end of the season meeting. Coaches from the district nominate players and the coaches vote on each player nominated.
Snow was named the Tri-Utility Player of the Year along with Palestine Westwood senior Kolton Bentley and Teague senior Brad Smith.
Being selected for first-team honors were senior Tyler Russell and Tyler Crawford. Garnering second-team honors were sophomore Cully McCoy and junior Jake Lee.
Most Valuable Player of the district went to Teague’s Jaylon Davis, Defensive Player of the Year was Cooper Jones of Teague and Offensive Player of the Year went to Rhett Read of Leon.
Pitcher of the Year was Franklin’s T.J. Brumley, Newcomer of the Year was Jarrett Fishbeck of Buffalo with Coach of the Year going to Teague’s Jeff Callahan.
The Tigers went 9-10 overall on the sason and 5-7 in District 18-3A play this season and missed the playoffs.

Jun

01

Posted by : admin | On : June 1, 2017

By Pearl Cantrell
The News Staff Writer
HENDERSON COUNTY–Just about 30 days after a tornado turned Teresa Melton’s world upside down, what she was able to salvage of her property was burglarized this past Memorial Day weekend – not once, but twice.
She first received news of the break-in while attending her son’s high school graduation. A friend, who has been helping her clear the property of debris sent her a text that the storage building and 40-foot container had been broken into. Sometime on Sunday, her property was hit again.
Melton told The News that she goes to the property on Farm-to-Market 2709, one of the hardest hit by the storms, every day to sort, clean and prep for rebuilding. She had been at the property until 11 a.m. on Friday, but hadn’t returned on Saturday before she got the text message. She and her son, Matthew, a member of the Eustace Boys Cross Country team had spent the morning preparing for his graduation set for 10 a.m. Saturday at the E.L Kirk Gymnasium on the Eustace High School campus.
Matthew’s cap and gown was one of the items that was retrieved unhurt following the April 29 tornado. “We had counted that as a good sign,” Melton said.
She reports a list of items taken, including two zero turn Cub Cadet mowers from Tractor Supply, two chainsaws, two saddles and assorted tack equipment, a 14-foot utility trailer made by FFA students from Montgomery ISD, where her newlywed husband was finishing out the year as the Ag teacher.
Also missing is a quantity of large cooking equipment, two four-wheelers – a Suzuki Quad 750 and a Honda 500, a front loading washer and dryer, unique artwork, including a photograph of a cowboy riding a bucking bronco, and a Canon printer. The computer was destroyed in the tornado.
These items and many others stolen were kept in a 40-foot trucking container, a storage shed and a box trailer all of which were locked.
She and her son have been living in a hotel in Mabank, as the property is uninhabitable, without water hookups and a residential shelter.
When she learned of the burglary, she said “her heart sank.”
“My heart was full of happiness for Matthew’s graduation and then it just went empty. How can people be so cruel as to kick you when you’re down,” she asks.
She did her best to keep her son from finding out on his graduation day, but when he did, he could hardly believe it. “He was more upset than angry,” his mother said. “It felt like another piece of his dad had been taken from him.”
Matthew lost his dad to cancer February 2016. His mother only recently was married again. In fact, on Tuesday, she and Matthew had traveled to the Houston area for her husband’s retirement celebration from Montgomery ISD. “We were planning to do the name changing after his retirement,” she said. Matthew is one of four Eustace graduating seniors who have signed up to serve in the U.S. Air Force.
Henderson County Sheriff Botie Hillhouse said several investigators are working the case. If anyone has any knowledge of the break-ins or has seen some of the suspect items, they should call the sheriff at (903) 675-5128.

May

25

Posted by : admin | On : May 25, 2017

Jumper Obit

Bro. John Mark Jumper of Trinidad left the walks of this earth and entered into his eternal home with our heavenly father on May 11, 2017.
John was born in Dallas to Samuel Augustus Jumper and Gladys Gertrude Chatham Jumper.
He married the love of his life Mary Elizabeth “Patsy” Hughes on April 21, 1951 in Cayuga. They celebrated 66 blessed years of marriage this year.
John retired from the Air Force after 20 years of service. He traveled and was stationed in California, Hawaii, Michigan, England, Japan and Texas during his career. While in the service he earned many medals and honors.
He is preceded in death by his parents Samuel and Gladys Jumper, brothers Bill Jumper, Stephen Jumper, Jesse Jumper, Daniel Jumper and sisters Mary Lucas, Bernice Green, Martha Rogers and Naomi Ruth Jumper.
John is survived by his loving wife Mary “Patsy” Jumper, daughters Elaine Wallace, Sharon Bamburg, Karen Hylla and husband Dan Hylla, grandchildren John Gray and wife Michelle, Jason Gray and wife Liza, Meghan Wallace and Kelli Marvel. His legacy continues with twelve great-grandchildren Ty Gray, Cheyenne Gray, Aidan Gray, Joshua Gray Landyn Gray, Chance McNabb, John Simpson, Rylee Marvel, Kyrstyn Yates, Kaylian Yates, Amiliah Kyer and Victoria Kyer.
Visitation was held May 19 at Huckabee-Tomlinson Funeral Home in Malakoff.
Service was held May 20 at Hilltop Worship Center with Bro. Tommy Hayes officiating. Interment followed at the Judson Cemetery in Cayuga.
Memorials can be made to Hilltop Worship Center in care of the mission’s department.

May

25

Posted by : admin | On : May 25, 2017

Peggy Smith

Peggy Smith, wife of local attorney Don G. Smith, died on May 19, 2017. She was a resident of Park Highland Nursing Home in Athens for the past several years.
In the mid 1930’s two angels were born in the Hill County to Harry and Ruby Griffin, twin girls Peggy and Patsy. Don was married to Pat for 30 years before cancer took her from him. Peggy had never married. Peggy and I were married in 1997. And the twins are together again.
I can see them now holding hands strolling along the streets of pure gold. I sure do miss y’all.
She was preceded by her twin sister, Pat Smith, who died on May 24, 1996.
Peggy is survived by her husband Don and various nieces and nephews.
Graveside services will be held on May 25, 2017 (today) at 10 a.m. at the Payne Springs Cemetery.
Tearfully,
Don