Sherlock Breaux in the Creaux's Nest
Last updated 3/21/2023 at 5:35pm
ANNIVERSARY OF “SHOCK AND AWE”
THE BIG LIE
I sit here today on the 20th anniversary of the invasion of Iraq, recalling President George W. Bush going on TV and telling the American people what the U.S. planned to do. I had written several times that to invade Iraq would be a mistake. The Bush Administration used false premises to sell the war and the American people bought it. Their justification was that Saddam Hussein possessed weapons of mass destruction. That was a lie. They sold that Saddam had connections to Osama bin Laden, another lie. They had convinced most of the public. Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld and VP Dick Cheney were looking for an excuse to invade Iraq. They both pushed tirelessly for war. My belief then, and still today, is that if Iraq hadn’t had oil, we would never have invaded. Weapons of mass destruction have never, to this day, been found. Cheney said the invasion would be a slam dunk. We said it would last a long time, cost American lives and a lot of money. Over 4,488 American lives were lost, 32,000 wounded and we spent $3 trillion on a war. Who profited the most? Halliburton made billions. President Bush never asked the advice of the experts; he mostly just took Cheney’s word. The Iraq invasion was the biggest lie imposed on the American people in my lifetime before Trump’s election lie. The lie, lay mostly at the feet of Dick Cheney, who stood to profit the most. The United States should never again invade a country to occupy it. Iraq is a lesson we should always keep in mind.
MYSTERY SURROUNDS JENNY BAXTER’S DEATH
Russell James Kinney, 38, is charged with the murder of Jenny Baxter, 45, and has confessed to killing her. Kinney is in the Orange County jail awaiting arraignment Tuesday morning. Baxter’s body was found wrapped in plastic and stuffed under a bed at the Denbow Mobile Home Park, on Hwy. 1131, near Vidor. As of Tuesday, a cause of death was still being determined. Baxter’s license information showed her previous address history as Sour Lake. Her father Gordon Baxter was a popular radio personality and writer. I first met him in 1951 when he was a disc jockey for KPAC. Through the years Baxter and I had become close friends. He had visited our home and we visited his Village Creek place many times. When we first met he was married to Mary and had eight children. Bax then met Diane, an airline stewardess, divorced Mary and married Diane. They had one child, Jenny, a red haired girl who looked more like her dad than her mother. Her parents both passed away several years ago. I’m not sure what connection she has had with her half-siblings over the last 20 years. A medical condition had Jenny confined to a wheelchair for most of her life. I don’t know what became of that. Skipper Free kept up with Jenny, but we have lost touch with Skipper in the last couple of years. The last I heard the cause of Jenny’s death was still a mystery.
TURNING BACK THE HANDS OF TIME
10 Years Ago-2013
Well, we’ve come on the first day of spring. We dodged the winter bullet that has plagued so much of the county. The azaleas are in bloom, the birds are singing and Catholics around the world have a new leader. A full blooded Italian, from Argentina, Jorge Mario Bergoglio was elected Pope, the first Pontiff from the Americas. I’m glad he chose the name Francis. St. Francis was a friend to the birds and nature. For many years I’ve had a statue of St. Francis located near my bird feeders, watching over the flock. *****The big Bassmaster Sabine River Challenge was an outstanding success. Art in the Park drew overflow crowds. A big hand of appreciation goes out to the many volunteers who came from throughout the county, including Vidor. The Orange Chamber, Orange County Economic Development, Stark Cultural Venues, David Jones and John Gothia deserve a lot of credit for such a great success. Judge Carl Thibodaux, who through his life has been a devoted fisherman, did a lot behind the scenes to make the Bass Elite Series a reality. Unfortunately, the Judge, the most interested guy in the county, missed all the action because he was ill. The Judge has a thousand fishing stories and says some day he’ll write a book.*****Our South East Texas girl Kree Harrison, had a great outing in the first elimination of American Idol last week. Nine contestants remain for this week’s competition. Kree was picked as one of the top three last week. Most area news media have given her coverage. *****Our friend of many years, Percy Keith “Tucker” Clayton, 91, passed away last Wednesday, March 13. He died at Harbor Hospice Hospital in Beaumont. He usually came around quite often but hadn’t been by since before the holidays. Corky and the crew around here had wondered why. “Tucker” was one of Sheriff Chester Holts most trusted deputies. After the death of Don Moser a few weeks ago, only “Tucker” and Bill McDaniel remained who had served under Holts. McDaniel is now the last one. When Holts left office “Tucker” went to work for Mrs. Nelda Stark as her bodyguard and night watchman at her residence. Many nights she would get up and come sit outdoors with him. He knew all about her personal life and was on duty the night an attempt was made to kidnap her. He told the story and knew who was behind it. Many stories about his days in her guard and in law enforcement went with him. Services were held Sunday, March 17, at Claybar Funeral Home.***** Johnny Dishon was born on March 21, 1987. He’s one of the best all around athletes to come out of Bridge City High School in recent years. Today Johnny is playing pro-baseball and has just been elevated to Double-A Ball. There are two more years on his contract.*****Our friend Don Harmon is in Methodist Hospital in Houston. He’s due to have a rod placed in his leg where the bone is deteriorating. He will then start treatments to shrink two tumors. Corky and Betty visited him Sunday and report that his spirits are good. Dr. Howell and the team of specialists are optimistic about his recovery. (Editor’s note: Don passed away in 2014.)*****Longtime educator at Bridge City and former principle at Deweyville, Joy Scarbourgh, former 35-year teacher Ted Williams, and former commissioner Marcel Adams, all attended the Wednesday Lunch Bunch get-together last week.****I wish everyone could watch the documentary, “The World According to Dick Cheney.” It premiered on Showtime last Friday. It was very much as I reported those eight years of Bush/Cheney and how Dick and Rumsfeld screwed the President by not telling him the truth, and how the invasion of Iraq, that cost $3 trillion and many young lives, was a sham. Bush wouldn’t pardon “Scooter” Libby, Cheney’s former chief of staff, convicted of CIA leaks, so they haven’t spoken since.*****Our friend Joe Chanella, who served Bridge City School District well, beginning in 1967 until last year, stopped by for a nice visit. He was in town putting their B.C. home on the market. He and Nancy have moved to College Station. Many improvements were made at BCISD during Joe’s tenure.***** The GOP CPAC showcased their stable of stars last weekend. Rand Paul, like his daddy before him, won the straw poll, Rubio, second; Santorum, third; Christi, fourth and Paul Ryan fifth. Palin, tenth and Perry, who made his pitch didn’t make it to the top ten.
24 Years Ago-1999
Donna Scales is newly hired Parks Director. She is ready to take up the task left by her predecessor Helen Droll. (Editor’s note: No one can deny that Donna has done a great job upgrading our parks. Donna is a people person and a dedicated hard worker).*****Les Anderson is county engineer.*****Jan Johnson is the Queen of Cajun Cuisine on KOGT Saturday radio. She spins Cajun and Swamp Pop music, one of the few places on the dial where you can hear Harry Choate, Wayne Toups, Jackie Callier and Lawrence Walker. Real Cajun mixed with pure Swamp with Lil’ Alfred, Warren Storm, Bobby Charles, Jivin’ Gene and Charles Mann’s “Red, Red Wine.” In 1990, Jan was involved in a bad auto accident on FM 1130 and her friendship with blind D.J., Terry Lyons, led to her radio job. *****The Orangefield Crawfish Festival, billed as the Texas Crawfish and Saltwater Crab Festival, began in Bridge City years earlier. The event is at Jewel Cormier Park. Plenty of food and music by Jude Moreau, the Bon Ton Playboys, Gary Bertrand, Jerry Bellot, Ed Gary, Jay Broussard, Johnny Comeaux, Lesa Cormier and their bands, a dozen in all.*****Orange Savings Bank celebrated grand re-opening. Darby Byrd cut the ribbon, Nelda Stark and Bob Shinn assisted.*****David Bernson is a freshman state senator.*****At Bridge City there hasn’t been an election since John Dubose became mayor. That speaks highly of the job the city council is doing. However, two good people, Moe Litton and Kirk Roccaforte will be lost to the council because of term limits. Robert Harvey and Joe Rabon will replace them.
49 Years Ago-1974
Winners of the Orange Evening Optimist Club’s oratorical contest were, in the girl’s division, Michelle Thibodeaux, age 15, the daughter of Mr. and Mrs. Artie Odom, a Stark High student sponsored by her coach, Helen Collier. Runners-up are Sandra Lewellyn and Lisa Dawson. In the boys division, Terry Conder, age 16, son of Mr. and Mrs. Jon Conder, a West Orange student, sponsored by his coach Callie Pollard. Runnersup are William Jackson and Dwayne Brown. Judges were Joe Ben Welch, Louis Dugas and Kathleen Cook. Frank Manchac was the oratorical contest chairman.*****Joe Marks is manager of the Cue Lounge at 107 Fifth Street. Canned and bottled beer, 40 cents; Schlitz on draft, 30 cents; wine, 45 cents a glass. The club offers shuffleboard and four pool tables.*****Montgomery Ward is at 1605 N. 16th Street. There you can find Inez Hearn.*****Bill Townes is running for reelection to the BC school board.*****The Bridge City track team, coached by Bob Puntes, returns three-fourths of the state third place mile relay team. Bo Worrell, David Guidry and Mark Truncale. Larry Hagler is gone from last year’s team and replaced by Raymond Salazar. Bobbie Truncale is alternate.*****The time in last year’s state meet was 3:19. Guidry also runs the 330 hurdles in 39 seconds. Pole vaulter, Raymond Ridley, one of the area’s best polevaulters, at 13.7, is shooting for a state championship this season.*****Other tracksters are Lanston Fall, shot put; Craig Morris, shot put; Danny Long, discus; David Weishaar, Billy James, Steve Hock and Guidry, hurdlers. Distance men are Desi Ramsey, Wayne Beard and Thad Thompson.
CONGRATULATIONS HALLIE AND AVERY
Bridge City’s Hallie Bearden won 1st place at the 4A D2 State Powerlifting championship meet, in the 114 pound class. She deadlifted 330, benched 195, and squatted 295 for an 820 total to win by five pounds. BC’s Avery Weidner also medaled with a fourth place finish in the 97 pound class.
A FEW HAPPENINGS
You would have thought Willie Nelson was coming back to the Lutcher Theater the way the Greater Orange Chamber of Commerce sold reservations to hear Chevron Phillips Chemical CEO Bruce Chinn. He's set to speak at the Brown Estate for a 9 a.m. Breakfast on Tuesday, April 18. The event is being sponsored by the new Golden Triangle Polymers plant, a joint venture between Chevron Phillips and Qatar. The breakfast is $25 and was open for chamber members and "stakeholders." Chinn will talk about Golden Triangle Polymer's Local First Program to help hire local workers and use local vendors. The chamber was going to leave reservations open for a couple of weeks, but instead sold out in a couple of days. Ida Schossow, of course, leads the Greater Orange Chamber and has been helping get all the details and parties together for the upcoming countywide economic boom.*****Tony and Nancy Dallas rented a place to stay in Florida while sons Chad Dallas and Jack Dallas are having baseball spring training camps within a few miles of each other. Chad is a University of Tennessee grad pitching in the Toronto Blue Jays system. Jack is a Lamar University grad pitching for the Philadelphia Phillies system. Visitors to see Tony, Nancy, and the Dallas pitchers in different games have included Jay and Summer Hall, along with Leigh Anne and Philllip Saperstein.*****Russell Bottley enjoyed his spring break in Las Vegas. Haven't heard yet on his luck. ***Aaron and Latouia DuBose took their young ones to Tennessee for the break.*****Sherry and Mike Combs have now chalked up 53 years of marriage. The college sweethearts have been making their harmonies together through two children, grandchildren, and now great-grandchildren.*****Melanie and Joey Claybar had their 22nd anniversary, while Paul and Claudia Hardin celebrated No. 20.*****Jada Semien and Kody Campbell have been together a while and will be making their commitment official. Kody gave Jada a big diamond engagement ring this week. Of course, she said 'yes.'*****Those celebrating birthdays this past week included Wanda Simar, who turned 90 with a family celebration.*****Joel and Lori Ardoin had a big family reunion for Harriet Ardoin's 87th party.*****Nancy and Cecil Byers had granddaughter Eleanor Sanchez, who is now a big sister, turning 5.*****Cody Carr turned the Big 3-0 and celebrated with help from Sydney Brittain.*****Others having birthdays this week included Assistant District Attorney Krispen Walker, retired teacher Lacey Gunn Hale, dance studio founder Rose Thayer, Carl Eason, Marcia Duncan, Austin Mellon, Kenedie King Beadle, Abigail Fisher, and twins Brayden and Kaylee Wickham. *****Correction in last week’s Down Life’s Hwy. column by Roy Dunn. In the picture of his dad, Clay, and the first cab company in Port Arthur, the cars should have been listed as 1915 models, not 1925 models. Let me remind you that Sweet Creations, Etc. is loaded down with a fresh batch of gifts. You can always fine unique gifts for those who have everything. Pay them a visit, you will be pleasantly surprised. I really like this gift shop, located at 3515 Mockingbird, in Pinehurst. We also use their Sparkling Clean cleaning service and have for several years. Give them a try. 409-886-1631.*****Phyl and Roy’s granddaughter, Jenna Dunn Ballou, who lives in Royalton, Massachusetts, left Vero Beach, Florida at 9:00 p.m. Sunday and arrived in Bridge City Monday, 11:00 a.m. She drove straight through with daughter Willow, age 7 and son Chase, who turns 5 on March 30th. The Dunn’s were pleasantly surprised and happy.
A few folks celebrating their big day in the next week. March 22: Sharon Boling, Kyle Leyendecker and Carson Carpenter all celebrate.*****March 23: Happy Birthday to Abigail Gauthier, Lance Eads, Kurt Haggard, Chad Gearhart, Natalie Sarvar, Renee Dillon, Helen Clark and Grady Rawls.*****March 24: Michael Catt, James Stone, Joseph Blanda, Dr. Grant Kimbrough celebrate.*****March 25: Kim Faulkner, Katie Birdwell, Matt Thompson and Warren have birthdays on this day.*****March 26: Celebrating are Sherry Stevens, Karen Bozman.*****March 27: Happy Birthday to Art Mason, Jordan Harper, Lou Hillard.*****March 28: Garrett Gros, Dorothy Keith, Lindsey Peoples, Steve Holland
CAJUN STORY OF THE WEEK
Clovis Comeaux couldn’t find no work so he decided to go to California. Da high gas prices took most of his money to drive dere so he went to a bank and told the receptionist he need a loan him.
She sent him to da loan officer. “My name is Cobbs, what can I do for you?”
Clovis say, “My name is Comeaux, I need to borrow a couple of thousand dollars to held me over till I can find a job me.”
“What do you have for collateral?” asked the loan officer.
“I got my 95 Suberban me.”
Cobb said, “You know what we do with Cajuns in southern California?”
Comeaux him started to turn away when he answer, “No, but I know wat we do wit cobs in Sou’h Louisana.”
The Latest “Top Hog” Sausage Report
A lady called the office to say she had called Market Basket looking for the “Top Hog” brand of sausage. The butcher told her they had several kinds of sausage in stock, plus they made their own sausage, pork and beef, but they didn’t have the “Top Hog” brand. He suggested she try Robert’s Meat Market. She said the same thing happened, they didn’t carry the brand. She then called us to find out where she could find some. She was told it wasn’t sold in a market, they can’t find enough Blue Ribbon sows. We then got a call from another, Mr. Aubrey I believe, who wanted to know if the “Top Hog” folks did custom smoking. He had some frozen, wild ducks he would like to get smoked. I told him Pop and the Jenkins’ brothers weren’t set up yet to do around the clock smoking. Capt. Chuck Uzzle used to give me wild ducks and I had some smoked. Very good in gumbo.*****Life is like a jar of jalapeno peppers what you do today might burn you tomorrow. Take care and God bless.