Daily Newspaper and Travel Guide for Reeves County, Trans-Pecos, Big Bend of West Texas
March 17, 1998
TxDOT engineer seeking local input
By GREG HARMAN
The Texas Department of Transportation (TxDOT) has already
spent over $700,000 on its storm sewer and sidewalk paver
project on the east side of U.S. 285 north of Interstate 20,
and plans two more installments to come, which will bring
the project's cost to near the $1 million mark.
Pecos Area Engineer Doug Eichorst II said the next two
installments will cost an estimated $100,000 apiece.
TxDOT has been busy lately. Road paving and in-town projects
in Balmorhea and work on landscaping a rest stop at the
Highway 17 Interstate 10 junction near Saragosa have cost
the state agency over $240,000.
But, as the total budget figures come back to him from the
U.S. 285 paver project, Eichorst can't help but wonder,
"Could we have spent that $1 million someplace else more
Now, he is calling for the creation of a beautification
committee, to be comprised of representatives of the city,
county, state and any interested civic organizations, to
brainstorm their way to a master plan for the Town of Pecos
"We really need the buy-in from the rest of the community,"
said Eichorst yesterday, "I've posed it to the county and
city to come up with other names, starting with logical
places like the school and the tree board."
Eichorst, who appeared before the Pecos City Council with
his proposal last Thursday, said he hoped to have a
"kick-off" meeting sometime in the next couple of weeks. He
said that until recently there had been small projects here
and there, but what was needed was an overall theme that
would bring consistent attractiveness to Pecos.
The federal government decided several years ago that state
agencies, such as TxDOT, must use 1 percent of their
finances on beautification and "landscaping type ideas,"
said Eichorst, in order to attract tourism to the states.
But there are shortcomings to TxDOT going it alone, he
Because it is a state agency, TxDOT is restricted to only
performing this work on state property. But, they can help
devise an overall design to be acted upon by other groups.
The state transportation department may provide all drawing
and drafting services, and provide engineering help and a
licensed irrigator, Eichorst said.
County Judge Jimmy Galindo said the effort sprung from early
conversations he had with District Engineer Joe Morales
several years ago. "I asked about the possibility of
providing more pavers on U.S. 285 and if (the county) could
borrow a landscape architect."
The TxDOT architect proved to be too overloaded with
projects in Odessa to help out, but was able to drive around
town with Galindo and Eichorst. "I discussed with the Bureau
of Prisons about the possibility of establishing a
horticultural vocational training program inside the prison,
and they were all for it," Galindo said. "They are waiting
on us to implement it."
He added that the master plan for beautification of Pecos
would benefit by involving community groups in ways similar
to the `Adopt-A-Highway' programs, by helping to keep
developed areas clean and watered.
"We will need the help of civic organizations to really make
this a community project . . . We'll be able to do a lot
with the resources we have available," Galindo said.
At the Reeves County Detention Center, Warden Rudy Franco
said that such a program had existed in the past but had not
been active in the last few years. "We are in the
preliminary stages of setting up the VT horticulture
program," he said.
Eichorst and Galindo both envision using native plants and
rocks to create a running theme that would require little
upkeep. "What we need is something appealing that is also
low maintenance," said Eichorst. "Something lasting that can
take the wear and tear over a long period of time."
This expression of pride by a community, said Eichorst,
could also help to draw more businesses and travelers to the
Eichorst hopes that soon open-style meetings will be
engaging the community as a whole to come up with the future
plans together. "I want everyone to be able to say what they
want to say but still keep everyone involved," he said.
Oil plant victim listed in critical condition
By GREG HARMAN
A Monahans man is listed in critical condition this morning
in a Lubbock hospital, after suffering second and third
degree burns over seventy percent of his body when two tanks
burst into flames at the American Oil and Gas Plant just
north of Kermit on Sunday.
Tommy Wiltz, a Monahans native, had been in the process of
filling a tanker truck when the accident occurred, about
10:45 a.m. on Sunday morning. Wiltz was taken first to
Winkler Memorial Hospital in Kermit, then flown by air
ambulance to the burn ward of University Medical Center in
A spokesperson for K N Energy, the owners of the plant, was
unavailable for comment, but according to a report in the
Odessa American it remains unknown what initially caused the
An official at the Winkler County Sheriff's Office said an
investigation was being headed by K N Energy's insurance
Perea seeking new term
Pecos-Barstow-Toyah school board president Frank Perea has
become the second candidate to file to run in the
Pecos-Barstow-Toyah ISD race, with just one day left before
the filing deadline for all local races in the May 2
Perea filed this week to seek another three-year term on
the board. Two other three-year terms, held by Linda Gholson
and Earl Bates, are also up on May 2.
Louis Matta is the other candidate to enter the ring in his
quest for a position on the board.
Meanwhile, no candidates have filed so far for the three
Reeves County Hospital District board seats that will be up
Terms in Districts 1 and 3 expire this year, along with the
at-large seat for which all Reeves County voters are
eligible to cast ballots. These positions are currently held
by, respectively, Chel Flores, Jesus Prieto and Greg Luna.
Wednesday, March 18, is the last day to file to run in the
In the Town of Pecos City elections, all three incumbents
have filed for new terms, and are currently unopposed.
Mayor Dot Stafford is seeking a new two-year term, as are
incumbent councilmen Ricky Herrera and Danny Rodriguez.
In Balmorhea, school positions up for election include those
currently held by Paul Ward and Armando Mondragon. In the
city elections, positions available include those of mayor,
a position held by Ismael Rodriguez, and two council
positions, held by Rosendo Carrasco and Rosendo Galindo.
In Toyah, positions open are those of the mayor, a position
unoccupied at this time and council positions, held by
Howard Dennett and Linda Compton, while in Barstow, the two
incumbent councilmen, Robert Ortega and Benny Avila, have
filed for new terms. They are joined by Salvador Villalobos,
who has filed for the mayoral position held by Abram Flores,
who has decided not to run for re-election.
Cancer Society plans May relay at arena
By CARA ALLIGOOD
There will be a new event in Pecos this May, the "Relay for
Life," a community-wide, family-oriented fund raiser for the
American Cancer Society.
The relay will be held May 15-16 at the West of the Pecos
Rodeo Arena and everyone is invited to come out, participate
and enjoy the event, said Mark Edmiaston, an American Cancer
Society spokesman from their Austin office.
Edmiaston and Leesa McNeese, the local representative from
Odessa, held an information rally to let people know about
the event Monday evening at Pecos High School.
The relay started 13 years ago in Virginia and has grown to
become the American Cancer Society's national signature
event, Edmiaston said. To participate in the relay, teams
are formed from various organizations, such as companies,
churches or civic clubs. They raise money from sponsors,
then spend a night at the event.
The objective of the teams during the relay is to keep at
least one member of each team walking the arena throughout
the event. As long as one member of the team is walking, the
rest of the team members can enjoy food, entertainment, or
sleep if they tire during the night.
There are several reasons for holding a "Relay for Life."
Money is raised for cancer research, and cancer survivors
are honored, while Edmiaston said the community has a
wholesome, entertaining evening, and the society has an
opportunity to educate the public about cancer and the
services they provide.
A "Relay for Life" begins with a survivors' lap, where
people who have battled cancer make the first lap around the
arena. Also during the evening is a luminaria lighting, when
participants can light luninarias in honor or memory of
their relatives who have battled cancer, or still are
fighting the disease.
Teams set up camps, and different forms of entertainment are
found at different relays. The variety of food and
entertainment is limited only by the imaginations of the
participants and event organizers. However, there is no
alcohol or tobacco sale or use allowed during the health
care charity's event.
Anyone wishing to help the American Cancer Society's board
of directors organize the event, recruit a team, volunteer
their time as an entertainer or participate in any way
should call Marie Cardenas at 448-5286 or Nancy Ontiveros at
447-3551, extension 350, for more information.
Cancer survivors and their relatives are urged to call
either of the two and become a part of the event, McNeese
Services are incomplete for Jose Guadalupe G. Botello, 64,
who died Tuesday, March 17, 1998, at his residence in Pecos.
Martinez Funeral Home is in charge of arrangements.
Crecencio Rede, 55, died Sunday, March 15, 1998, at Midland
A rosary will be held at 7:30 p.m., today, at the Pecos
Funeral Home Chapel.
Mass is scheduled for 2 p.m., Wednesday, at Santa Rosa
Catholic Church with Father Antonio Mena officiating. Burial
will be in Greenwood Cemetery.
He was born Dec. 12, 1943, in Toyahvale, was a veteran of
the Vietnam War, served in the Armed forces in 1965,
received an honorable discharge, was a case manager at the
Reeves County Detention Center, a lifelong Pecos resident
and a Catholic.
Survivors include one son, Crecencio Rede, Jr. of Pecos; one
daughter, Terry Gerke of Midland; three brothers, Pablo Rede
of Pecos, Raymundo Rede of Odessa, Juan Rede of Lovington,
N.M.; two sisters, Maria Magdalena Garcia Ruiz of Midland,
Agapita Lopez of Lovington, N.M. and two grandchildren.
Pecos Funeral Home is in charge of arrangements.
Services are incomplete for Judy Trammell, 57, who died
today at University Hospital in Lubbock.
Pecos Funeral Home is in charge of arrangements.
High Monday 64. Low this morning 37. Forecast for tonight:
Partly cloudy with lows in the in the upper 30s and lower
40s elsewhere in West Texas. Wednesday, increasing
cloudiness with a chance of rain. Highs in the 50s and 60s
in West Texas, ranging upward to the 70s in the Big Bend.
Most of Texas will get a brief respite from the rainfall
that has produced flash flooding across a vast area of the
state. But the dry spell will be brief with forecasts
calling for a chance of rain Wednesday and Wednesday night.
The rainfall reprieve didn't come soon enough for dozens of
residents in north and central Texas who were forced to flee
their homes in the wee hours Monday. About 30 people
evacuated a mobile home park near Fort Worth when Big Fossil
Creek went over its banks. In Central Texas, Lampasas Fire
Chief Tommy Lindsey said he had to evacuate about 20
residents because of an overflowing creek. High winds in
McKinney were blamed for damaging the roofs and fences of
about 30 homes on Monday evening. Winds up to 50 mph in Port
Arthur were blamed for the collapse of roofs at a drug store
and a car dealership. Trees and power lines also were
damaged, but there were no injuries.
Mac McKinnon, 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 1998 by Pecos Enterprise