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Archive 2001

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Daily Newspaper and Travel Guide
for Pecos Country of West Texas

Top Stories

Monday, October 15, 2001

Prison's delayed Open House set for Tuesday

Staff Writer
PECOS, Mon., Oct. 15, 2001 -- The scheduled tour of the latest addition to the Reeves County Detention Center, which was called off last month following the terrorist attacks on the United States, will take place on Tuesday, beginning at 9 a.m. at the prison located on the southwest side of Pecos.

The tour and Open House for the general public will feature the work done as part of the RCDC II project, a 1,000-bed addition that was completed late last year. RCDC staff will conduct tours of the facility for local residents and also provide a tactical demonstration. The tours will run from 9 a.m. to 11 a.m. and 1 p.m. to 3 p.m.

The 1,000-bed addition doubled the size of the prison, which primarily houses federal minimum-security inmates under a contract between Reeves County and the U.S. Bureau of Prisons. Currently, the county is in the process of beginning work on another addition to the facility, RCDC III, which will bring capacity up to 2,960 inmates.

The RCDC II tour had previously been scheduled for Wednesday, Sept. 12, but due to the terrorist attacks on Sept. 11 at the Pentagon near Washington and at the World Trade Center in New York, officials at the facility decided to reschedule the tour for a later date. Officials said part of the reason was the attacks grounded all U.S. commercial airlines, preventing U.S. Bureau of Prison officials from flying in from Washington for the event.

Registration will be conducted in the lobby of the new RCDC Administration Building, located at the southwest corner of the facility on Locker Road, one-half mile west of Highway 17.

Children 13 years and older may accompany an adult during the tour. No cellular phones, pagers, shorts, tank tops or flip-flop shoes will be allowed.

Blood drive at RCH nets 42 volunteers

Staff Writer
PECOS, Mon., Oct. 15, 2001 -- The staff of Reeves County Hospital and United Blood Services appreciated the help from numerous people who chose to donate blood at this weekend's special blood drive held in the RCH lobby.

Director of Program Development/Community Services for Reeves Count Hospital Nancy Ontiveros said that 42 people showed up to give blood, which helps the local blood supply.

"We had 34 units (of blood)," she said. "Forty-two people showed up to give blood but many of them were deferred due to their iron level."

The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has made regulations on the blood screening interview process tougher, according to Ontiveros, therefore the people who donated blood this weekend had a longer wait than usual.

"The process took longer," she said. "The FDA have new regulations that require more extensive questioning of the individuals."

"The FDA now requires additional questioning in the interview process to insure that the blood is safe for the person receiving it."

Ontiveros said that each prospective donor receives a "mini-physical" before they can donate blood along with the extensive health questions.

She said the mini-physical checks the donors' temperature, blood pressure and iron level before they are allowed to donate.

Once the United Blood Services receive the donated blood, each unit is put through 101 tests before the blood is used to make sure it is safe.

Because of the extensive interview process, Ontiveros said that some people had to wait for as long as two hours before they could donate their blood.

However, Ontiveros said that the donors were very patient, which she appreciates.

She explained that there is a critical nationwide blood shortage right now along with an extreme shortage here in Pecos.

Ontiveros said that this weekend's blood drive was held in efforts to restore the local blood supply as well as help the victim's of the Sept. 11 disaster.

"We held it to replenish the local blood supply which at this time has diminished," she said.

Ontiveros explained that Pecos has been hit hard by the nationwide blood shortage because it is a rural community that sits next to two major highways.

Because Interstate 10 and 20 are so close to Pecos, many accident victims on those roadways, along with the other area highways, come to RCH to receive treatment.

"There is a desperate need for every type of blood," Ontiveros said.

Plans are already being made for a community wide blood drive to be held in December, according to Ontiveros.

"The next one will be a regular one and everyone will be able to donate," she said.

The drive in December will be held on a weekday in a more central location in town.

"We want to hold that one downtown in a centrally located area," Ontiveros said. "We hold drives in different locations to see if we can attract more people."

Front's blowing dust shuts road, more winds predicted

PECOS, Mon., Oct. 15, 2001 -- Fall winds that approached the area's high velocities this past spring shut down Highway 17 south of Pecos and caused some minor damage and power outages Friday afternoon and evening.

More winds are expected as part of another cold front this afternoon, and the National Weather Service is predicting winds up to around 40 mph this afternoon and evening, though that would still be less than the gusts that arrived with Friday's cold front.

Visibility went to zero Friday evening for a while in Pecos when strong winds blew in to town as part of a cold front that passed through the area. The winds blew throughout the afternoon, but weren't strong enough for Texas Department of Transportation crews to shut down Highway 17 due to blowing dust until around 6 p.m.

One accident was also reported on Highway 17 due to the blowing dust conditions, and winds in Pecos were clocked at 75 miles an hour, according to Pecos Municipal Airport Manager Isabel Blanchard.

The cold front dropped temperatures in Pecos from the upper 80s to the low 40s by Saturday morning, though the area escaped the more severe weather that occurred to the north and east and forced postponement of a number of high school football games Friday night in cities to the east of San Angelo.

The front also dropped mid-day temperatures on Friday into the upper 30s as close to Pecos as Ruidoso, N.M., though by Saturday skies had cleared and temperatures were back up into the 80s on Sunday.

Tuesday morning temperatures are expected to be back down around 40 degrees, following a low of 47 degrees today.

RCH sets Tuesday program on breast cancer awareness

Staff Writer
PECOS, Mon., Oct. 15, 2001 -- Women can survive breast cancer and lead productive, healthy lives, but early detection is critical.

Early detection through self-exams is the key to more treatment options and a dramatic increase in survival rates, according to Nancy Ontiveros, Director of Program Development/Community Services at Reeves County Hospital.

"Early diagnosis can prevent breast cancer," said Ontiveros.

Reeves County Hospital will be hosting a breast cancer awareness/self breast exam program at 6 p.m. Tuesday, in the hospital classroom.

Women will be taught how to perform self-breast examinations, will receive information on the importance of clinical breast exams and mammography.

Each person attending will receive monthly planners to record when to perform self-exams each month, as well as other little incentives, according to Ontiveros.

"This program is being conducted in conjunction with Breast Cancer Month, which is celebrated in October and National Mammography Awareness Day which is Oct. 19," said Ontiveros.

Cancer is the second leading cause of death in Reeves County, and Reeves County Hospital wants to encourage women to detect the problem early and avoid tragedy late in life, according to Ontiveros.

The hospital is a part of the West Texas Chronic Disease Consortium, which focuses on providing education to its' residents on cancer, heart disease and diabetes.

"Due to the declining number of women who receive mammograms, this is the first effort that Reeves County Hospital is taking to emphasize the importance of prevention and early detection," said Ontiveros.

There is no registration fee and the program will be offered bilingually.

Individuals interested in registering can call Reeves County Hospital at 445-3551, extension 350.

Elementary school 'Credit by Exam' dates, deadline set

PECOS, Mon., Oct. 15, 2001 -- Credit by Exam will be held at all the Pecos-Barstow-Toyah ISD elementary schools.

Deadline to register for Credit by Exam is this Friday at any of the elementary school counselor's offices.

A student must able to score 90 percent on each subject matter test at the grade level that he or she wishes to skip in each of the following areas: language arts, mathematics, science and social studies.

This Credit by Exam is for students in first through sixth grades..

Test dates are Thursday, Nov. 15 and Friday, Nov. 16, at the respective elementary school campuses and individuals can sign up at any of the respective campuses counselor's office.


PECOS, Mon., Oct. 15, 2001 -- High Sun. 79. Low this morning 47. Forecast for tonight: Clear and cool. Lows in the lower 40s. NE winds 15 to 25 mph this evening: Diminishing after midnight. Tues. Mostly sunny. Highs near 70. Light and variable winds in the morning: Becoming south 5 to 10 mph by afternoon. Tues. night: Mostly clear. Lows in the lower 40s.

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Pecos Enterprise
York M. "Smokey" Briggs, Publisher
Division of Buckner News Alliance, Inc.

324 S. Cedar St., Pecos, TX 79772
Phone 915-445-5475, FAX 915-445-4321

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Copyright 2001 by Pecos Enterprise