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Newspaper and Travel Guide
for Pecos Country of West Texas

Tuesday, May 23, 2006

‘Relay for Life’ surpasses goal for fundraiser

Organizers for the Annual Relay for Life event held this past weekend at the Martinez Field exceeded their goal for raising funds for the fight against cancer by over $20,000.

“We raised about $57,000,” said organizer Karen Hornberger, who had said that their goal for this year had been set at $35,000. It was the second year in a row the group had set a $35,000 goal for funds to go to the American Cancer Society, after the 2005 event brought in just $30,000.

The Relay for Life was held from 7 p.m. Friday through about 8 a.m. on Saturday, and several awards were handed out Saturday morning during the closing ceremony.

Games and other activities were held throughout the night as walkers made their rounds around the track.

The ‘Best Campsite Award’ went to Reeves County Hospital; the ‘Most Spirited Team Award’ was received by Reeves County Detention Center III, the Geo Group; ‘Super Team’ was Reeves County Hospital and the most money raised by a group was Wal-Mart. “They raised over $10,000,” said Hornberger.

The most money raised by an individual adult was Kimberly Acosta who raised $1,500 and the most money raised by an individual youth was Bradley Shaw, who raised $421.

Bessie Osborn gave the survivor and caretaker talk. Osborn’s husband died of cancer recently and she herself is a survivor, according to Hornberger.

The camp that made the best stick animal was American Home Health, which used one with a photo of their boss Leo Hung, on top, while the best car went to the Pecos Nursing Home. “We had a wonderful turnout,” said Hornberger. “The heat kind of hurt us a little, but we still had a great turnout and lots of fun.”

She said that they had cut the survivor lap short, because of the heat.

“We’ll probably try to have it in April next year,” said Hornberger.

Area participants included: Trans Pecos Bank, American Home Health, Pecos Nursing Home, Reeves County Hospital, Reeves County Detention Center III (GEO Group); Austin Elementary School, Catholic Daughters, Wal-Mart, Texas-New Mexico Power Company, Winkler County Credit Union, Pecos Citizens Police Academy Alumni Association and Crockett Middle School, who had two campsites, one for the school student council and one formed by the teachers.

“We’re thankful we had such a great turnout and that we had the opportunity to exceed our goal,” said Hornberger.

Commissioners OK ADA fixes for rec building

Reeves County Commissioners approved improvements to bring the Reeves County Recreation Center into compliance with federal laws on the disabled, and made $900,000 in payments on the Reeves County Detention Center, during their regular meeting held Monday morning in the third floor courtroom.

The county approved the changes at the recreation center, in conjunction with the Pecos-Barstow-Toyah ISD, to bring the facility into compliance with the federal Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA), after inspectors had found violations at the site.

“The licensing and regulations commission cited several deficiencies at the high school racquetball courts,” said Reeves County Judge Jimmy B. Galindo. He told commissioners the county had spent $12,000 to put in compliance ramps and other components.

“There were 11 deficiencies that needed to be corrected and they said that as long as they give a time frame,” said Jimmy Dutchover, P-B-T ISD Transportation Director who is also serves as a paid county consultant.

Dutchover told the group that the Pecos-Barstow-Toyah ISD board had already authorized the board to do what they needed to do with the 46-year-old facility, which is used by both the public and Pecos High School students under an interlocal agreement.

“I spoke to Lorraine (Day, the architect who is currently in charge of the project), and she said she would send us the steps and with your approval we can move forward,” said Dutchover.

The project will consist of widening the doors to the gym, converting one of lobby bathrooms and lowering one of the mirrors and sinks to accommodate the handicapped, according to Galindo.

“Our contract is for paying utilities only, so we need to do another agreement,” said county auditor Lynn Owens.

In other action, commissioners approved the payments for the RCDC I&II lease payment in the amount of $495,000; the maintenance reserved payment in the amount of $29,166; the RCDC III lease payment in the amount of $345,226 and the RCDC III maintenance reserve payment in the amount of $29,166.

The group approved a contract between Reeves County and Linebarger, Goggan, Blair and Sampson, LLP, for the collection of delinquent taxes.

“We spoke with Ms. Zuniga and we told her about the 20 percent increase for delinquent taxes,” said Mark Flowers.

Flowers said that the 20 percent would only apply to taxes that are delinquent in 2007. “It will be a year before the 20 percent goes into effect,” said Flowers.

A payment to Howard’s Mechanical was approved in the amount of $11,875.

“The work has been done and we need the bond, it can’t be released until the bond is received,” said Owens.

Property bids were approved as presented including: 815 S. Almond in the amount of $400; 1217 S. Pecan in the amount of $500 and 805 S. Elm for $100.

New hires and salary changes included: Lorenzo Salinas, as a Tech I in the Road and Bridges Department at a starting salary of $19,773; Steven Lara in the Road and Bridges Department at $22,044 and part-time employees Simon Castillo and Jake Weinacht at $7 per hour.

At the Reeves County Sheriff’s Office, Eddie Sotelo, part-time at $7.50 per hour; at the Reeves County Detention Center III, commissary clerk, Norma Garcia at $18,720; Robert Taylor at $22,880 as armory/locksmith and at the Reeves County Detention Center I&II, $31,179.

RCH’s internal scanners see digital upgrade

Digital imaging technology, which has in the past decade worked its way down from cameras costing as much as a new car to being add-ons to cell phones people carry with them every day, is working it’s way into the field of medicine as well at Reeves County Hospital.

The hospital recently implemented a new system of digital imaging for X-Ray, CT scan and sonogram images, which staff members say will not only cut costs in the long-run, but speed up the ability of doctors to use the images and diagnose problems.

“The only other one I know of in the area is at Alliance and Medical Center Hospital (in Odessa). We’re pretty much in an exclusive area,” said Thom Anderson radiology department manager at the hospital. “A lot of small departments like this one all across Texas would salivate to have something like this.”

Anderson said the hospital made the decision to switch from film to digital images, spending $75,000 on the equipment to allow the hospital’s existing equipment to be converted to the digital format.

“The reason why we do this is for the mobility of information,” Anderson said, noting that the images can easily be e-mailed to specialists outside the area for diagnosis. “We’re able to take the information and get it to the people it needs to get in front of.”

He said instead of being captured on film, the images are received by a phosphorus material, which is then converted into a digital image for storing on a computer file. Those files can then be both called up on computer rendering stations within the hospital, or sent outside the hospital for analysis.

“We put the cassette in the rendered, and the image comes up right on screen,” Anderson said. The screens also permit the side-by-side view of images. “We can bring up X-rays from different times to compare,” he added.

The new AFGA system includes a server to store the digital images from the X-ray, CT scan and sonogram departments. “Most of the imaging companies like GE and Siemens are getting into the digital environment,” Anderson said. “The rules are changing in radiology on the type of (imaging) standards. This is the way it’s going, which saves money and does a better job maintaining HIPPA (medical record) privacy).”

Park St. home damaged in Friday fire

A fire early Friday morning in the 2200 block of Park Street caused heavy damage to a home and carport, according to local officials.

Fire Marshal Jack Brookshire said the home of Jo Ann and Fred Tucker was damaged by the fire, which apparently started in the front yard of the home. “As far as how the fire started, that hasn’t been determined,” Brookshire said on Friday. “I didn’t see anything that could have caused it.”

The home is located south of Yucca and Park streets, near the city’s Stafford Boulevard water substation. The south side of the home suffered the heaviest damage, and Brookshire said, “What it didn’t bur had smoke and heat damage.”

He added that three adults and a child who were in the home at the time were able to escape safely, but the family apparently did not have insurance on their property. Officials from the American Red Cross chapter in Midland-Odessa were asked to help, and provided clothing, food and replacement medical supplies.

Jimmie Birden with the Red Cross said she would meet with the family to see what their needs were and to see about temporary housing following the fire. “If possible, we can help with the first month’s rent,” Birden said, adding the organization was working with Professional Pharmacy and Wal-Mart on replacement medication.

She said the Red Cross doesn’t collect money to directly go to family, “If donations come from a specific area, we try to allocate it back to that specific county.”

Brookshire said a fire that broke out about 4:45 p.m. on Saturday at Seventh and Almond Street only involved a grass fire in a yard behind a home. Fire crews were called out to the scene, but no damage was reported.

Meanwhile, the investigation into the cause of a May 12 fire that destroyed the former Foxworth-Galbraith lumber yard at Third and Ash streets remains under investigation.

Brookshire said following the blaze that workers tearing down part of the lumberyard were believed to have accidentally caused the fire, though a final determination has not yet been made.

“I still haven’t been able to talk to people about them cutting it,” he said. “I don’t want to say, but it looks like they were using a cutting torch to cut the sheds they were using to store the lumber, and set the grass on fire and it spread to the main structure. Less than two minutes after the building caught fire it was completely engulfed.”

Lubbock area motorcyclist dies in crash

A Lubbock area man was killed early Sunday morning following a motorcycle accident in Pyote, according to the Department of Public Safety.

Kenneth Harland Frizzell, 54,was pronounced dead at 3:37 a.m. Sunday by Dr. Art Johnson at Medical Center Hospital in Odessa, about 2 1/2 hours after the accident occurred.

According to the report filed by DPS Trooper Chris Ryan of Monahans, Frizzell was northbound on Pyote Street (Spur 247) at 1:03 a.m. while riding a 2000 Harley-Davidson motorcycle, when he left the road at Fifth and Pyote streets, went into the bar ditch on the east side of the 500 block of Pyote Street, which cause the motorcycle to roll over onto its right side.

Frizzell was still on the motorcycle when it hit the ground and suffered severe head injuries. Ward County EMS workers transported him from the scene, before being transferred to Odessa.

The DPS report did not say if alcohol was a factor in the early morning accident, which occurred on the old main north-south highway through the small Ward County community.

Tarin graduates in Mansfield

Justin Tarin is a 2006 graduate of Summit High School in Mansfield. He is the son of Rodolfo “Fito” and Esmeralda Tarin of Mansfield, the grandson of Andrew Rodriguez Sr. of Pecos, Prescilla Garia of Pecos, Chano Tarin of Verhalen and the great-grandson of Pedro Rodriguez of Pecos and Raul Tarin of Balmorhea.

Tarin plans on pursuing a degree in Sports Communications at St. Edwards University in Austin.

Jurado named an All-American Scholar

The United States Achievement Academy announced that Jennifer R. Jurado from Pecos has been named an All-American Scholar.

The USAA has established the All-American Scholar Award Program to offer deserved recognition to superior students who excel in the academic disciplines. The All-American Scholars must earn a 3.3 or higher grade point average. Only scholars selected by a school instructor, counselor, or other qualified sponsor are accepted.

Jurado, who attends Pecos High School was nominated for this national award by Eva Arriola, PHS Counselor.

Her name will appear in the All-American Scholar Yearbook which is published nationally.

“Recognizing and supporting our youth is more important than ever before in America’s history. Certainly, winners of the All-American Scholar Award should be congratulated and appreciated for their dedication to excellence and achievement,” said Dr. George Stevens, Founder of the United States Achievement Academy.

The Academy selects All-American Scholars upon the exclusive recommendation of teachers, coaches, counselors, and other qualified sponsors.

Jurado is the daughter of Joe Ray and Josie Nunez of Pecos.

Grandparents are Hector and Adelaida Jurado of Pecos and Rey Nunez and the late Ageda Nunez of Pecos.

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