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Daily Newspaper and Travel Guide
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Wednesday, July 31, 2002

Odessa duo wrestling with operating show

Staff Writer

PECOS, Wed., July 31, 2002 -- Anyone who has ever wondered what it would be like to watch two  grown men pound each other with trash cans and chains will have the  opportunity to see first hand the pain and destruction during a  professional wrestling match this weekend in Pecos.

West Texas Championship Wrestling will make their Pecos debut at 8 p.m., this Saturday at the Reeves County Civic Center. Roadhouse, a band out of Wink, will also be performing at 7 p.m., that night.

Co-owner of WTCW Terry Pantera said that the company was formed in January as a result of a merge with three other companies.

"It started with three other companies and we merged them together to make a new company," he said.

Pecos Area Chamber of Commerce Director Linda Gholsen said that the Chamber decided to bring the wrestlers into town to give area residents some family entertainment.

Gholsen explained that the owners of WTCW contacted the Chamber to see if Pecos would be interested in hosting a show.

"They contacted us because they've been here before at the schools," she said. "It's just something different to have in town. It'll provide lots of entertainment for people in the area."

Approximately 20 to 25 wrestlers from all over the United States will be performing at this week's match, which is one of the many stops across Texas that the group makes.

WTCW is based out of Odessa and is co-owned by Pantera and Kathy Montgomery, who happens to be the first woman owner of any wrestling organization.

The Equalizer, who is one of the many wrestlers performing on Saturday, explained that no other organization is truly owned by a woman. He said that women might be portrayed as owners in other organizations, however in reality they are not.

"She actually owns it," he said. "We've very proud of that fact."

Pantera has been in the wrestling business for 15 years and was born into a wrestling family.

He explained that his father was a professional wrestler along with his cousins, who recently retired from World Championship Wrestling (WCW).

As a child, Pantera said he wasn't interested in getting into the business after seeing all the injuries and sometimes deaths that are a result of the wrestling.

"I never wanted to get into the ring," he said.

However, all that changed when he was 10 years old. That's when Pantera decided he did want to become a wrestler.

"After that it was an obsession almost," he said.

Pantera will be defending the tag team title this weekend in Pecos, giving all wrestling fans a chance to watch a good match.

Life was a little different for Montgomery since she was not born into a wrestling family like Pantera.

Montgomery has been around the wrestling community for several years but never fully participated in the companies.

She is starting her eighth month as co-owner this week with WTCW.

Montgomery said that being the first female owner of a wrestling organization is often scary but she is enjoying it.

"It's a challenge," she said.

Pantera said that Montgomery is good at what she's doing and is proud to work with her.

"Here's something that couldn't be done and she's doing it," he said.

The Equalizer said that it takes a strong woman to stand up to a man like him and tell him he couldn't do something.

Montgomery credits Pantera for helping her learn everything she needs to know from day to day.

"He's taught me a lot," she said.

As for The Equalizer, he said he's been in the business for eight years.

This big, bad wrestler is from Crane, grew up in Imperial and played high school football for Midland High.

After graduating, he decided to go into the U.S. Army where he served as an Airborne Ranger in Somalia and Desert Storm and received two Purple Hearts and a Silver Star.

The Equalizer said that after leaving the military he decided that wrestling was the natural way to go.

"It kinda seemed like the logical thing to do," he said.

Now, The Equalizer serves as the "bad guy" for the WTCW and has wrestled such people as the Road Warriors and Jake the Snake and has also worked out with WWE's The Undertaker.

"I make sure that the belts stay where they're at," he said.

The Equalizer has also been featured on the front page of the sports edition of the New York Times.

Pantera said that all the members of his company are open to the public and enjoy speaking with the fans after the matches.

"We're very much into being around the public," he said.

Pantera said that the group enjoys seeing the excitement on the kids faces who come to see their shows, however they don't want those same kids going home and trying to perform like the wrestlers they see.

He said that anyone who is interested in learning how to wrestle doesn't need to try it themselves, they need to be trained.

WTCW has a training school, which is open to anyone interested in becoming a wrestler.

"We build champions," is the motto for the WTCW Training School and has put out wrestlers that are performing with the group and could possibly go further.

"We have a few that have the potential to go to WWE," Pantera said. The WWE, formerly the WWF, is the main professional wrestling organization in the United States.

Pantera said that anyone may apply for the training school and may call 915-556-2445 or 915-924-0700 for more information.

WTCW is now looking forward to the show this weekend and hope to see many fans in the audience, which promises to be good family entertainment.

"It is wrestling but as far as language we tone it down a lot," The Equalizer said.

This week's show will feature several matches including a triple threat hard-core match, a tag team match, a heavy weight championship match, an El Chelibre match and a woman's match.

Fans will be able to see The Equalizer, who will be performing with a broken rib, and Pantera.

Tickets are on sale at the Chamber of Commerce office, La Tienda, Bob's Thriftway and Movie Gallery for $9 per ticket. All tickets are general admission.

WTCW souvenirs will be for sale at the show.

Several members of WTCW will be signing autographs at the Oak Tree Inn, Wal-Mart and the Movie Gallery on Friday as well as after the show on Saturday.

Pantera invites everyone to the show on Saturday and said that it will surely be a good time for everyone.

"If you've never seen wrestling in person you've got to come see us," he said.

Searchers widen hunt for missing Ft. Stockton boy

Staff Writer

PECOS, Wed., July 31, 2002 -- The search for a missing 4-year-old Fort Stockton boy entered  its third day today, as officials widened the area of the search on the  north side of that city.

"There is no update, they are still searching," said Betsy Spencer, records clerk for the Pecos County Sheriff's Department in Fort Stockton.

The little boy, Schyler Lee Fain, was last seen at 11 a.m., Monday, when he wandered into the back yard of his great-grandparents home in a rural part of Fort Stockton.

"We don't suspect foul play at this time," said Pecos County Sheriff Cliff Harris.

He said that the four-year-old has been listed as missing since Monday, after his mother and family had searched for him for two hours.

Spencer said that authorities followed a lead from an employee with FedEx who reported seeing him at about 11:39 a.m., Monday, the day he was reported missing.

"They searched that area and it was an area that she had pointed out a little ways further than where the initial search began," said Spencer. "They searched a little larger area and all the way to Farm Road 1053."

The search continues and flyers are being passed out in bundles, according to Spencer.

"We want to let as many people as we can know about this missing boy and if they have seen him," she said.

Pecos Police Department Chief Clay McKinney said that he had contacted the sheriff's department in Fort Stockton and offered their assistance. "I offered to help them out, but they haven't said anything yet," he said.

The Fort Stockton Police Department, Pecos County Sheriff's Department, Fort Stockton Fire Department, Texas Department of Criminal Justice and local volunteers were still out searching for the youngster this morning.

A helicopter is also being used during the search, according to Spencer. "We also have a lot of volunteers out there," she said.

Schyler was last seen wearing a two-tone blue Nike T-shirt, with a red Nike check mark, white underwear and no shoes.

Harris said that Schyler went out to play in the backyard Monday morning about 11 a.m. "The family went out about 30 minutes later, believing he was there playing and didn't find him," said Harris. "After searching for him for two hours, they called us."

Harris said that the youngster had a habit of wandering off in the family's yard, since it was on outskirts of Fort Stockton and there was plenty of room.

"They still don't suspect foul play at this time," said Spencer. "They say it's just a case of a child wandering off and they're hoping to find him soon. "

If anyone has any information on the missing little boy, they should contact their local police department or the Fort Stockton Sheriff's Department at 915-336-3521.

P-B-T to wrap up summer open gym for students

PECOS, Wed., July 31, 2002 -- Open gym for Pecos-Barstow-Toyah summer recreation will continue at Crockett Middle School until this Friday.

For more information call 445-2721.

School is set to begin Monday, Aug. 19.

Local youth travels to Canada

Staff Writer

PECOS, Wed., July 31, 2002 -- Six young students from Pecos, along with one from Balmorhea,  one from Saragosa and two from El Paso, traveled to Canada with four  adults on July 21, to meet the Pope.

The group attended a weeklong pilgrimage from July 21-27, where they met with other youths from 176 other registered countries.

The students were selected from parishes around the Pecos area to go to this year's "World Youth Day" in Toronto, Ont. According to Arturo Quintana, a sponsor of the trip, each of the catechist teachers selected two students who they thought would continue to be involved with the church.

"We want the youths to get more involved with the church," Quintana said. "The youth is the future of the church."

The "World Youth Day" was started in 1985, during the International Year of Youth by Pope John Paul II, when he invited the young people from around the world to join him in Rome on Palm Sunday. With the international event occurring only every other year, the "World Youth Day" takes place in Rome on Palm Sunday in the years it does not go outside of the Vatican.

In the past years the "World Youth Day" has been held in Denver, Manila, Paris and Rome, with each event sharing a messages such as "I come that they might have life, and have it to the full," "As the father sent me, so I send you," and "Teacher, where are you staying? Come and see." Each message is a message sent by the Pope to the students.

This year's message for the students was "You are the salt of the earth, the light of the world."

In 2005 the "World Youth Day" will be held in Germany.

According to Sister Elizabeth, the Toronto event was not just attended by Catholics. "There were youths from other denominations there," Sister Elizabeth said.

This year the students raised the money by holding car washes; bake sales and serenading mothers on Mother's Day

Arriving in Dallas last Sunday, the group faced some difficulties upon their arrival. Father Miguel Angel Sanchez and Jonathon Martinez were left behind because they did not have some papers required for them to enter Canada.

"We had some problems along the way," Martinez said. "But we finally got there because He choose us."

Leaving the two members behind, the remaining group arrived in Canada on Monday at about two in the afternoon for registration.

According to Sister Elizabeth, the group arrived at the airport where they were then shuttled to their hotel in Mississauga.

However, by staying in Mississauga, the group would have to get up early so that they could make their two-hour trip to the Exposition Center in Toronto.

"The hotel shuttle would take us to the airport were we would get on a bus to go to the subway station," Sister Elizabeth said. "We would take two different subways then take a mini-bus to the exposition."

Traveling to Canada was quite an experience for the group. They said it was quite different because four of them had never flown before and for all of them the food is some thing that they were not use to.

"They had different types of foods we are not accustomed to," Quintana said.

According to the group, a pass was required for them to get into each event being held.

Martinez said that even though he had to stay back for a few days, he feels that the group came closer as far as prayer.

"I got to see how universal the church is," Martinez said. "It was a very beautiful experience."

For Natalia Ornelas, the trip made her feel the grace of God.

"God is our only God and He will always be there," Ornelas said. "We are going to build the faith."

According to Ornelas, she said that she felt the grace of God after the Pope gave his speech.

According to the group they first got to see Pope from a distance of five to ten feet away.

"We camped out for four or five hours to get that position," Hector Garcia said.

Garcia also felt that a lot of friendships and relationships came out of the trip.

"A lot of the bonds within the group got stronger," Garcia said. "My spiritual site got stronger and everyone else in the group grew spiritually."

For Daniel Quintana, the trip made him see that the children are the light and the hope for the community.

"We must not be afraid of rejection," Quintana said. "Because God will always be there for us."

Quintana also felt that the group got closer as well as individually.

For Mari Mendoza, the group became her second family and she felt that the group was one of the lucky ones to see the Pope from such a close distance.

She also felt that God was with them when they did their seven-mile walk to the vigil.

"We can never go wrong in not believing." Mendoza said.

For Alessandra Carrasco, the trip helped her learn the beauty of the faith and the knowledge of knowing that God blesses them.

"We are the salt and the light," Carrasco said.

Paula Baeza felt that she became closer to God.

"I was not very close to God," Baeza said. "It was a very emotional experience. I even cried when I saw the Pope."

Baeza said that if she had to do it again she would. Other members of the group agreed with her but did say that they would learn how to pack lighter next time.

As a group, Sister Elizabeth said that she was very proud of them.

"I am very surprised at how much they have responded," she said. "They were so apathetic when they first started to come to confirmation classes. They have changed through out the year."

As a group, Sister Elizabeth said that they came together to form a family. She said that the experience helped the students realize that they are not the only young students that live out the faith.

The group would like to thank the people that supported them and the families for letting their children travel such a long distance from home.

"We want to thank the parents for having enough trust in us with their children and allowing them to go with us," Arturo Quintana said.

With youths from 176 other countries they also felt that there was no such thing as a language barrier.

The group felt that it was a great experience because no matter where they went, a psalm could be sung and people would join in by either singing or dancing along.

According to Sister Elizabeth this is the first year a group of students travel to a "World Youth Day" but she said that they hope to continue providing such an experience for the youth.

The group would also like to invite other youths to join them in forming a youth group as well as a youth choir.

Barton marks 50th anniversary as bartender

Staff Writer

PECOS, Wed., July 31, 2002 -- `Don't hurry and don't worry' are the best advice one local bartender  can offer for a long and happy life.

Joe Barton celebrated his 50th year of working as a bartender at the Pecos Valley Country Club last Wednesday with a reception held in his honor. It's a job he thoroughly enjoys.

"You think I would work here for 50 years if I didn't enjoy it," said Barton, laughing. "Why would you want to go work somewhere else, when you don't know the people and everything is new and the job you already have is something you do well and enjoy."

He said that the people who work and patronize the country club are very nice to him. "They're all so good to me," he said. "I want to keep on working here for as long as my health permits," said the 86-year-old bartender.

Barton was one of six children who were raised on a "little rocky farm" in Liberty Hill.

In 1936, at the age of 20, Barton went to Fort Stockton to visit a cousin. "We were working at a motel and they had just begun to build motels and I could see that the motel was doing well," he said.

Barton moved to Pecos in 1952 from Fort Stockton, where he had worked for 16 years at the former Stockton Hotel, with a job waiting for him. "I didn't always want to be a bartender," he said. "I had been a waiter and had some bartending books."

Barton added he was kind of "fascinated" with the bartending books, which he read constantly. "I was waiting tables when I moved down here and had more experience in that," he said.

He said he has had quite a few people offer him a job. "But why leave something you already know and enjoy," he explained.

Barton has put his trademark on most of his drinks served at the country club. He makes his own mixes for Margaritas, Tom Collins and Bloody Mary drinks. "People say that my Bloody Mary's are the best they've ever had," said Barton.

Barton has seen generations of people at the country club. "I've met a lot of people and seen a lot of them grow up," he said.

"Take for instance, Mike Burkholder," said Barton. "I first met his mother and daddy, then him, then his children and now his children have children," he said.

"I like to watch kids grow up," he said.

Barton said he wanted to continue working at the club for as long as he could. "They told me I could stay here for as long as I wanted to, and that's what I'm going to do, stay here for as long as I feel like it," he said.

He added that while he still loves his job, he has to concentrate harder now while working. "Now, when I'm mixing my drinks I can't tell a joke or listen to one, I really have to concentrate," said Barton. "But I don't hurry, they just have to wait."

Before Barton said, he used to joke around and listen to stories, but since he's gotten a bit "older" he has to concentrate on what he's doing more. "I was 85 before I had to start taking a prescription for high blood pressure," said Barton. "Before that, I never took any kind of medication," he said.

Barton has no plans on moving anywhere, even though, his son, Don Barton, will be moving to the place where he was born. "He wants me to move there, but I don't have any plans to, I want to stay right here," he said.


PECOS, Wed., July 31, 2002 -- High Tuesday 93. Low this morning 70. Forecast for  tonight: Partly cloudy. Lows 70 to 75. Southeast winds 5 to 15  mph. Thursday: Mostly sunny. Highs near 100. Southeast winds 5 to 15  mph. Thursday night: Partly cloudy. Lows 70 to 75. Friday: Mostly sunny.  Highs near 100. Saturday: Partly cloudy. Lows 70 to 75. Highs near 100.

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