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Newspaper and Travel Guide
for Pecos Country of West Texas

Tuesday, November 02, 2004

Early vote total falls in county from primaries

Staff Writer

Tuesday’s presidential election has raised early voting totals across much of the United States. But with Texas expected to go heavily for George W. Bush on Tuesday and no major contested local races, early voting totals for Reeves County were down about 30 percent from the total of voters who cast ballots back in March in the primary election races.

Early voting figures show that over 1,450 individuals cast their vote early for the Nov. 2 election.

“Things went very well, I think we had a good turnout,” said Reeves County Clerk Dianne Florez, who reported that 1,453 individuals had cast their vote by personal appearance during early voting held the past two weeks in the Reeves County Courthouse.

That total is down from March, when over 2,250 voters cast ballots early in the primary election, out of about 7,000 registered voters in Reeves County.

Florez said that she was hoping more people would vote on Election Day, at the 11 polling places in the county. Election Day voting in local elections was light in March, when there were three major contested races in the Democratic primary.

“We want to encourage everyone to come out and cast their vote,” she said.

While most of Texas has trended Republican in the past 10 years, Reeves County has stayed solidly Democratic, and almost all contested local elections are decided during the March primary races. No local races are contested on Tuesday’s ballot.

The lone contested area race is for the District 23 congressional seat, where Republican Henry Bonilla is seeking a seventh term in office. Bonilla narrowly won re-election in 2002 over Henry Cuellar, but is expected to have an easier time this year defeated Democrat Joe Sullivan. The two are both from San Antonio, and Bonilla has defeated Sullivan twice before in congressional races.

Polling places in Reeves County will be the same as in the past elections. Commissioner Pct. #1 includes boxes 2 and 11; Pct. #2 includes boxes, 3,4 & 12; commissioner precinct #3 includes boxes 5,6&10 and commissioner precinct #4 includes boxes 1,7&8.

Polling Places include:

1. Community Center, 506 S. Oak, Pecos. 2. Odessa College, 1000 Eddy St., Pecos. 3. Pecos High School Gym, 1300 Iowa, Pecos. 4. Toyah City Hall, Toyah. 5. Balmorhea Fire Hall, 4th and San Antonio Streets, Balmorhea. 6. Saragosa Multi-Purpose Center, Saragosa. 7. Reeves County Library, 505 S. Park St. Pecos. 8. Lamar Elem. School, Rm. 1, Oak and F Streets, Pecos. 10. Reeves County Annex Building, council room, 700 Daggett Street, Pecos. 11. Sadler Haynes Center, 900 Locust Street, Pecos. 12. Texas New Mexico-Power, Reddy Room, 1126 Stafford Blvd. Pecos.

This is also scheduled to be the last year Reeves County uses its punch card voting machines to handle federal elections. A law mandated counties replace the punch card ballots by 2006, due to the problems Florida voters had figuring out the ballots during the 2000 presidential election.

State issues warning about lottery ticket scam

With news that incidents of the Latin Lotto Scam are now occurring in New Mexico, Texas Lottery Executive Director Reagan E. Greer warned West Texans to steer clear of anyone trying to sell them a lottery ticket on the street.

“Unfortunately, our neighbors in New Mexico have been putting up with this scam since the summer, but that shouldn’t mean we let our guard down here in Texas,” said Greer. “Our counterparts at the New Mexico Lottery have certainly made their residents aware of this scam, which may turn the con artists back to Texas. These con artists are mobile and they could show up anywhere at any time,” he said.

Con artists use phony lottery tickets to convince their victims that they can have a huge prize for a price, usually in the thousands and sometimes tens of thousands of dollars. The cons also tell their victims that they cannot redeem their alleged prize because they aren’t American citizens, and that lie is almost always accompanied by a sob story detailing the cons’ need to return to their home country because of a family crisis.

“Citizenship is a non-issue here,” said Greer. “You don’t have to live in Texas or be an American citizen to claim a lottery prize. Just show us a valid photo ID. The lie they tell is part of the ploy to separate the victim from his money for absolutely nothing but worthless paper in return,” he said.

Since the first case of the Latin Lotto Scam was reported in Texas in the summer of 1999, victims have lost nearly $3.5 million.

“That figure is a rough estimate because we’re sure there have been cases that went unreported in which victims lost thousands of dollars,” said Greer. “Quite naturally, some victims may be embarrassed at what’s happened, but we encourage anyone who’s lost money to these con artists or even just approached to call local law enforcement. They could prevent another person from becoming a victim of the Latin Lotto Scam. This is especially true right now in West Texas, because it may be the first place the scam artists go when they leave New Mexico,” he said.

For more information about the Latin Lotto Scam, visit the official Texas Lottery Commission Web site at .

Gulihur excels in U.S. Navy

Dustin W. Gulihur, the son of Rocky and Darla Blackstock, graduated from Pecos High School in May 2004.

After completing high school successfully, Gulihur, joined the Navy and headed for Chicago.

After finally completing boot camp under the title of Division 281, which was awarded the CNO Honor Division award, he received his orders and headed for Pensacalo, Fla., where he would complete his A School.

While in school, Gulihur trained to be a Medal Fabricationist and a hydrolics specialist. Now school was no easy journey for Gulihur and his fellow sailors. On top of studying countless hours for school the sailors also withstood the powerful impact of Hurricane Ivan.

Not only was their school postponed until Ivan passed, they were also evacuated to a nearby school in Pensacola. There they spent 10 long days with hardly anything to eat and nothing but a blanket and the hard cold cement to sleep on.

After surviving the horrible hurricane the sailors were allowed to return to back to base. In returning they found that many of the barracks had been flooded and belongings were wet and ruined. School finally proceeded and Gulihur was set to graduate on Oct. 26. In his last weeks of school he received great news. He was graduating in the top three in his class and was recommended for E4 Petty Officer position due to his outstanding grades.

On his day of graduation, Gulihur, was named the Honor Graduate of his class and still waits to go before the board and present his recommendation for a Petty Officer.

He has three sisters, Corrie Warren, Cristie Gulihur and K’Dee Gulihur.

His grandparents are Larry Kington, the late Beverly Lindemann, Kenneth Lindemann, Lola and Sonny West, and Tommie and Dale Blackstock.

Gulihur now awaits further orders.

Kids dress out for Mother Goose Parade

Ghosts, goblins and a vast variety of witches participated in this year’s Annual Mother Goose and Friends Parade held in Downtown Pecos, Saturday afternoon. Ribbons were awarded to the participants and organizers for the event called it a huge success.

The children were organized into four separate categories.

Winners in the birth through three years old category included: first place, Lauren Conger, Dorothy of the Wizard of Oz; second place was a bumble bee, Zoelle Alvarez and third place went to Brandon Michael Dominguez, all decked out in his Harley Davidson gear.

In the four to six year olds division; Kayla Martinez, immersed in a bubble bath took first place; second place, Natalia Rodriguez, Sabrina the Teenage Witch and Simon; third place a cluster of grapes, Mikayla Niblett.

Seven to 12 year olds had fun participating in the annual event. First place went to: Harlee Lozano, dressed up in a ‘50s costume (Grease); second place went to a young man dressed up as Maximus the Gladiator, Phillip Workman; and third place was a fairy, Amber Rose Vega.

Chuckie and his Bride took first place in the Group’s Category. Gary and Jazlynn Salcido looked a lot like the scary ‘Chuckie’ and his bride during the annual event. Second place went to witches Brittney Alligood and Sara Smith and third place was the Care Bears, Isaac Ramirez and Kaydence Armendariz.

Rodriguez completes Marine training

Ruben O. Rodriguez, 19, son of Syria O. Garcia, has just graduated from MCRD, the Marine Corps Training in San Diego, Calif.

A Pecos resident, Pvt. Rodriguez graduated from Del Rio High School.

He is the grandson of Eva Ornelas. Rodriguez will be returning to Camp Pendleton, Calif., for SOI training on Nov. 2.

Pugh, Miller exchange vows

Lisa Anne Pugh and George Austin Miller were united in marriage in a candlelight ceremony Sept. 18, at 6:30 p.m., in Cox Chapel of Cochran Chapel United Methodist Church.

Former Greenville pastor Rev. Benjamin Shinn, now of Dallas, officiated. The bride is the daughter of Mrs. Sandra Pugh and Larry W. Pugh of Greenville. She is the granddaughter of Mrs. Merle Pugh of Greenville and the late Weldon Pugh, and Mrs. Wanda Hughes of Pecos and the late Crawford Hughes.

The bridegroom’s parents are Mr. and Mrs. William R. Roper of Tallulah, La., and Mr. and Mrs. Leo A. Miller Jr. of Monroe, La. He is the grandson of the late Dr. and Mrs. George M. Webb of Tallulah, La., and the late Mr. and Mrs. Leo A. Miller of Baton Rouge, La.

Given in marriage by her parents, the bride was escorted by her father. She wore a strapless, floor-length gown of ivory silk charmeuse, featuring a shirred bodice with a flowing A-line skirt which extended into a short train in back. She carried a bouquet of champagne Sahara roses and mauve mini calla lilies.

Leslie Palumbo of Atlanta, Ga., was matron of honor for her sister, and Dr. Lee A. Miller of New Orleans, La., served as best man for his brother.

Nuptial music was provided by Mary Shinn, flutist, and Cynthia Gaertner, harpist. A dinner at the Four Seasons Resort in Las Colinas followed the ceremony.

The bride graduated from Texas Tech University in 1997 with a B.B.A. degree in marketing. The bridegroom earned a B.A. in 1993 and an M.B.A. in 1997 from Tulane University and a master of accounting degree in 2002 from Southern Methodist University. He is a trader and analyst for Clover Partners, a Dallas based money management firm.

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