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Weekly Newspaper and Travel Guide
for Pecos Country of West Texas

Wednesday, August 4, 2004

Gomez seeking Rangers’ help
with hunt for stolen rodeo cash

Reeves County Sheriff Andy Gomez said he has asked for the help of the Texas Rangers in investigating the theft of between $10,000 and $12,000 in cash and checks from the West of the Pecos Rodeo on July 2.

“The Ranger in this area has retired, so we’re waiting on that,” Gomez said last Friday, while adding that he expected help from the state law enforcement agency to begin sometime this week.”

A box containing the cash and checks was stolen from the press box at the Buck Jackson Rodeo Arena near the end of the July 2 show. Deputies said Delia Moore Walls, the secretary for this year’s rodeo, said she asked two other people in the announcer’s booth if they could carry a gray plastic money box and a clipboard containing rodeo information from the booth down to the secretary’s trailer, located on the north side of the chutes.

Walls said she left the box on a banister inside the booth. However, the two named by Walls said they never heard her request, and the box ended up being left unattended inside the room. Walls said she came back about 10:50 p.m. to find the box missing. Several people were questioned the evening about the theft, and information on people who may have been in the back hallway of the press box. The restroom adjacent to the announcer’s booth in the press box has been used in recent years not only by rodeo officials working the event and cowboys entered in the rodeo, but by fans in the VIP booth, built five years ago just to the north of the main press box.

Gomez said along with getting the Texas Rangers involved in the case, he said West of the Pecos Rodeo Committee President and Pecos Police Chief Clay McKinney was going to get a list of those in the press box and VIP area the night of July 2 to help with the investigation.

The probe is being handled by the sheriff’s department because the press box at the rodeo arena is outside the city limits.

Dedication ceremony held
for Balmorhea’s new gym

Staff Writer

Dedication ceremonies were held Monday evening in Balmorhea, for the Balmorhea ISD’s new gymnasium, the final project that was part of a $1.6 million bond issue to improve the district’s educational and extracurricular facilities.

A ribbon-cutting ceremony was held outside the building, following addresses to the crowd of about 100 by superintendent Mary Lou Carrasco and Balmorhea school board president Jesus Matta. The gym itself already had gotten its first official usage earlier in the day, when Balmorhea’s volleyball team held its first pre-season workouts.

“Today is not only a dedication day for the new gym, but a celebration day for the whole community, and especially for the students,” Matta said.

In addition to volleyball, the gym also serves as the dressing room and weight room for the Bears’ football team, which also started preseason practice on Monday.

“It’s a lot better than what we’ve had in the past,” said head football coach Adolfo Garcia, who also coaches the boys’ basketball team. “At least we have some showers this year; we didn’t have any last year.”

Both the boys and girls locker rooms now include whirlpool baths and washers and driers for the team uniforms. The only concerns voices were about the size of the weight room and the capacity of the stands, which seat about 150 people.

“With the crowd we had here last year for the Fort Davis game, there may not be enough,” coach Abel Garcia said of the available seats in the gym. However, he did add that because the district now has two gyms available for basketball, the Bears would host a tournament for the first time during the 2004-05 season.

Carrasco introduced officials in charge of the construction project, and them turned the ceremony over to Matta, who thanked former Balmorhea Superintendent Elizabeth Saenz for her work on the project.

“She was key to acquiring funding for all our construction,” he said, referring to the matching funds the district received after voters approved the $1.6 million bond issue in 2001.

“A little over three years ago the superintendent and the board went on an inspection tour of the cafeteria, the old gym and the high school, and concluded they needed major renovations,” Matta said. “We couldn’t afford it locally, so she looked for major grant sources of funding.”

Along with the gym, the project included a new agriculture building for the school, renovations to the cafeteria and the creation of new computer labs and classrooms in the high school area of the Balmorhea ISD campus.

“The citizens stepped up to approve the bond issue,” Matta said. “Everyone in the community had a part somehow in the renovation.”

Matta also mentioned the work of former Balmorhea ISD board president Paul Matta and former Balmorhea assistant principal and athletic director Michael Barrandey in working to get the projects approved in 2001.

Taylor celebrates fourth birthday

Kellie Kristine Taylor celebrated her fourth birthday recently with a swimming party held in her honor at the Pecos Valley Country Club Swimming Pool.

Theme for the event was “Shrek II” and her favorite gift was a Barbie CD player given to her from her parents Kyle and Myra Taylor.

Various friends and relatives were on hand to help her celebrate the special event, including her big brother Michael.

Kellie is the daughter of Kyle and Myra Taylor of Pecos.

Paternal grandparents are Steve and Dawn Taylor of Midland and Dan and Kathy Painter of El Paso.

Maternal grandmother is Christina Bitolas of Pecos.

Sanchez, Munoz announce August wedding

Estrella Sanchez of Midland, formerly of Pecos, and Thomas Munoz of Pecos, plan to marry Aug. 7, at Santa Rosa De Lima Catholic Church with Rev. Manuel Munoz officiating.

The bride-elect is the daughter of Isabel and Dora Sanchez of Midland, formerly of Pecos. She is a 2001 graduate of Pecos High School, attended Odessa College, from which she received three certificates for Office Systems Technology, and is currently working towards her associate degree at Midland College. She is employed by West Texas National Bank in Midland as Accounts Payable Personnel.

Her fiancé is the son of Polly Munoz of Pecos and the late Salome Munoz. He is a 2001 graduate of Pecos High School. He is employed by Dawson Geophysical as a vibe operator.

There will be a dance held at their honor at the Riverside Ballroom. The couple plan to reside in Midland after their wedding.

Carter produces big crops in friend’s big yard

Staff Writer

A woman with an extraordinary green thumb is yielding big things from her garden. Ruthie M. Carter, who has grown vegetables for many years, is yielding some “big” crop in her own garden, located at a friend’s house in Pecos.

“I don’t have my garden here at my house, because she had a bigger yard and the grass here just wouldn’t let anything grow,” said Carter.

Carter said she has been gardening for a long time, but this might be her last year of enjoying the outdoor hobby. “I’m just getting too old for it, and when I garden I like it really clean and nice,” said Carter. “That takes a lot of energy and I just can’t keep up anymore.”

Her vegetables include squash and the fruits, cantaloupe and watermelon. “My squash usually grows really big, but this year I’ve had a crop of cantaloupe and watermelon that is huge,” said Carter.

Her cantaloupes weigh anywhere between six and 10 pounds and she even had a watermelon that weighed 25 pounds. “I like to weigh my crop, I have scales and weigh everything,” she said.

Carter has lived in Pecos since 1986, coming here from Abilene. “I moved here because my sister, Ira Lee Bailey and her husband, the Reverend lived here,” said Carter, who came from a larger family consisting of 10 children.

“Now it’s just four of us, two of us live here in Pecos and two in Salt Lake City, Utah. “My sister died of Alzheimer’s in 1998 and her husband in 1999,” said Carter.

Carter said that her garden is across town at her friend, Peggy Ellis’ home. “There’s just no room to put a garden here,” she said. “I met Peggy, because I used to take care of her mother and we’ve gotten to be close friends.”

“I like it over there, because she has a great big yard,” said Carter.

She said that you have to make time to do the things you love to do.

“The devil just won’t give you any time, but you have to make time to do things you enjoy,” said Carter. “Otherwise, the devil won’t let you have time.”

Carter said that her squash crop has been driving her crazy because of how fast it has grown.

“It just produces so much, last week I had to give a lot of it away, I don’t like to see nothing ruin,” said Carter.

Her secret to getting a big crop?

“I just enjoy gardening and taking care of it,” said Carter. “It comes from tender, loving care.”

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