Hometown News For Orange County, Texas

Sherlock Breaux in the Creaux's Nest


On May 24, 2022, Salvador Ramos and his 66-year-old grandmother had an argument over his failure to graduate from high school at their home in Uvalde, during which he shot her in the face, before taking her black 2008 Ford F-150. She survived and got help from neighbors while police officers were called in. She was then airlifted to a hospital in San Antonio in critical condition. Ramos crashed his grandmother’s truck through a barricade and into a concrete ditch outside Robb Elementary School at 11:28 a.m. CDT (UTC-5) and proceeded to scale a fence and enter school grounds. A mass shooting occurred at Robb Elementary School in Uvalde, Texas, where 18-year-old Salvador Ramos, a former student at the school, fatally shot nineteen students and two teachers, while seventeen others were injured but survived. He fired shots for approximately five minutes outside the school, before entering unobstructed through an unlocked side entrance door with an AR-15 style rifle . He then shut himself inside two adjoining classrooms, without locking the classroom door, and killed the victims. Ramos remained in the school for more than an hour before members of the United States Border Patrol Tactical Unit fatally shot him after bypassing numerous local and state officers who had been in the school's hallways for over an hour. Police officers waited more than 1 hour and 14 minutes on-site before breaching the classroom to engage the shooter. It was the deadliest shooting ever at a Texas public school. Officers arrived three minutes after Ramos entered the school and approached rooms 111 and 112, but they retreated after Ramos fires at them. Officers were not successful in establishing negotiations. Apparently officers feared the type of gun the killer was using, which he had legally bought in Texas at age 18. One year has gone by and nothing has been done to change the law are raise the age limit. In the wake of the shooting, some parents have become advocates of gun reform in the state, including pushing a measure to raise the age to purchase semi-automatic rifles like the one used by the 18-year-old gunman. The majority of mass killings are committed with firearms. These events usually happen about two dozen times a year. The horror and tragedy of mass shootings in American schools, churches and other public places capture the nation's attention. Unfortunately mass shootings will continue. Over 600 have occurred in the one year since Uvalde.


Tenna Walker, a St. Henry parishioner, has written a great historical article in the East Texas Catholic magazine about the history of St. Henry Parish. (A few exerpts.)

St. Henry Parish will celebrate its 75th anniversary as a parish church with festivities on June 4. These festivities will include Mass with Bishop David Toups, a luncheon, entertainment and games for the children. St. Henry started as a mission church of St. Mary in Orange. Father Joe Berberich celebrated the first Mass in what is now Bridge City in 1937. With the approval from Bishop Christopher Byrne and after finding donors, Father Joe oversaw the building of a church. The church was built in the summer and fall of 1946. The Mission of St. Henry held its first Mass in the new church on September 8, 1946. St. Henry was established as a parish canonically in 1948. Father Timothy Cornin celebrated his first Mass as resident pastor on May 16, 1948. Once the church was established in 1948 with a resident pastor, the growth of St. Henry was phenomena. The establishment of organizations began long before the church was built. The Ladies Auxiliary began meeting in 1938. They helped in raising money for the church to be built in their community. Many other organizations and programs flourished, including the Knights of Columbus, which was established in 1951 with 42 charter members. The construction of a bigger church began in 1963 to accommodate the 700 parishioners of St. Henry. In April 1964, the octagonal church was 8,900 square feet and the only round church constructed in the diocese. The church was remodeled in 1983. In 2008, Hurricane Ike came through Bridge City causing devastation to the church and the small town. Grateful parishioners celebrated the first Mass after the reconstruction in June 2010. Bishop Curtis Guillory, SVD, led the procession as part of a dedication ceremony to reopen the church to the community after being closed for more than 18 months.


10 Years Ago-2013

Our Southeast Texas girl, Kree Harrison, came up short on national votes but she made a lot of fans along the way. Season 12 gave her the exposure and her talent propelled her to the final two. That’s overcoming tremendous odds, starting with 100,000 contestants and making it to the top with a chance to win it all. Idol winner Candice Glover, who is a great talent, took three tries on different years to win it all. She will be a star. Talent wise very little separated the two. I think Candice had a better selection of songs that highlighted her great pipes. Since American Idol, Kree has made a guest appearance on the Kelly and Michael daytime show and is suppose to appear on the Grand Old Opry in the future. Kree’s grandfather, Wilson Roberts, was disappointed but he put it best, “All you can expect in life is a break, Kree got that, now it’s up to her what she does with it. Wilson has since passed away. Kree, now 33, is a songwriter, singer and musician who makes her home in Nashville. American Idol season 21 winner is 18-year-old Iam Tongi from Hawaii.*****Orange Riverfront Boardwalk and Pavilion held a grand opening ceremony over the weekend. I give much credit to former mayor, Brown Claybar, who pushed that project through despite some vocal opposition.*****Farmer’s Market, on Wednesday evenings and Saturday mornings, at Big Lot parking lot, is in full swing. An abundance of fresh produce, many different kinds of homemade jellies and jams and many plants and hanging baskets are all available. I got two blueberry bushes ready to plant. Billy Peveto has new potatoes and other good stuff like tomatoes, squash, peppers and loads of healthy vegetables.*****

Our friends Don Harmon and Jerry Wimberly are continuing with their cancer treatments and are optimistic that some day they will beat the disease.*****Billie Sol Estes, 88, died in his sleep last week. As a young man I met Billie Sol on a couple of occasions. By the time he was 30 years old he was a millionaire. His connection to Orange County was at age 21, in 1946, following the war. He bought Navy houses from the U.S. government and moved the small houses to Pinehurst and later sold them off. Some of those buildings were sold to Clay Dunn and were part of the Midway Motel in Bridge City. In 1953, Billie Sol was named one of the “Ten Most Outstanding Young Men in America” by the U.S. Junior Chamber of Commerce. However, in 1962, during the J.F.K. administration, L.B. J.’s friend, Billie Sol, was convicted of using phony financial statements, involving non-existent fertilizer tanks. My impression of him was he was very personable. If you didn’t know better, you would have thought he was a preacher. *****Oxbow, 15 to 1, trained by D. Wayne Lukas and ridden by 50-year-old jockey, Gary Stevens, pulled out an upset to win at the Preakness Stakes. The Kentucky Derby winner Orb came in fourth. Another year with no Triple Crown winner.***** A few fine folks we know celebrating their special day in the coming days. May 23, is a special day for a special young lady. Over the years Amanda Uzzle has made her family proud. She’s a joy to everyone who has ever known her. ***Also celebrating on this day is an industrious, hard working young man, with a strong sense of family values. Best wishes to Billy Raymer.***The twins Joey and Rusty Williams celebrate on May 24. Both will do to ride the range with. ***Celebrating on May 25 is the birthday of lovely Barbara Olson, always a lady with class and a caring heart. ***Celebrating also on this day is Constable Mark Philpot. who has two reasons to celebrate. The day also marks 22 years of marriage to Babette.***May 26 is longtime Bridge City resident Mary Majors’ big day. Mary and Dr. Joe, Bridge City’s first dentist, raised their family in B.C. They have moved to College Station a few years ago. Son, Dr. Chuck Majors, lives in nearby Caldwell. The Majors played an important part in the development of Bridge City.*** On May 28 a nice lady, Maureen McAllister, celebrates, also Lee Ludwig, Michael Garcia, Judy Landry and Kelli Boehme.***A happy 60th birthday to our friend Margaret Toal.*****Taylor Swift won eight of 11 Billboard awards, Justin Bieber won three, including “Male Artist” and the coveted “Milestone” award, beating Swift and Bruno Mars. Prince got the “ICON” award.*****Jude and Monty Turley just returned from a seven-day cruise on Carnival, out of Galveston, making stop in Jamaica, Grand Cayman, etc.

24 Years Ago-1999

Louis Dugas, Jay Tanzen and Richard Turkel drove to New Orleans to argue before the entire Fifth Federal Circuit. Sixteen black robed judges heard their arguments and asked many questions. All three lawyers reported it was an exciting and grand experience.*****Karen Jo Vance, county clerk, gave Dugas a book on their return titled, “Why you Say It.” The book contains stories behind our everyday words and phrases. Louis says it’s amazing what he learned about simple words, like “Shampoo” etc. *****Congrats to Eric Eshbach, who vaulted 18.2 1/4 feet, making him the world’s greatest high school pole vaulter. Coming in second at the State Championships was fellow Orangefield vaulter, Jonathan Henly, who received the silver medal with a 17.3 vault. The Bobcats brought home first and second and Eric set a world record.*****Former West Orange-Stark baseball star Bruce Aven went three for four with one homerun to beat the Brewers 14-3. Bruce is batting .372 in the major leagues. *****Bridge City Coach Les Johnson and Wanda celebrated their 44th wedding anniversary May 20. (Editor’s note: If my addition is right, Wanda and Les celebrated their 68th this week. They make their home in Bastrop. *****Evelyn Morse, 73, passed away last week, May 11. Survivors are husband Howard, sons Gary, Wayne and Kenneth and daughter Kathleen. A grandson she raised preached his first sermon at her service Thursday after being ordained just the day before. (Howard has since passed away.) *****Attorney Karla Rogers has a good point when she says, “Judges shouldn’t have to run under a national party banner. Honestly, I’ve never known any judge who ruled based on being Republican or Democrat.” (Editor’s note: That was 24 years ago and still is true today. Taking it a little farther, no one should be elected or defeated in local government based on a national party. Local candidates should be judged on qualifications, not party banner. Party voting is a dumb way to pick the best candidate.

44 years ago-1979

Sue Bailey, Rob’s other half, is featured in a Texas Highways magazine article. The story also features Sidney Island. Sue is warden of the National Audubon Society.*****Bickham Lincoln-Mercury holds a midnight sale. Sale ends at daylight. *****West Orange Mustangs hold their all-sports banquet. Receiving awards are Lyn Broussard, volleyball; Geneva Vontours, track; Retha Jones, basketball; Scarlet Bland, golf; Sheila Ryan, tennis; Earnest Anderson, football; Greg Marshall, basketball; Gary Withworth, tennis; Kevin Wolford, baseball; Greg Hill, track; Retha Jones, Outstanding Female Athlete; Van Barnett, Outstanding Male.*****The Bridge City baseball team is in the playoffs against Brenham.*****Outstanding athletes honored at BC: Pat Meeks, baseball; Wesley Munlin, tennis; Lydia Moreno, basketball; Tammy Poindecker, track.*****N.J. “Vic” Vicknair has surgery.*****Ladonna Higginbotham and Ricky Hollier are to be wed May 26.


County Judge John Gothia has something to brag about, and it's not a fish tale. He's now a pawpaw. Emily Ruth Gothia was born at 9:29 a.m. May 11 at St. Elizabeth Hospital in Beaumont. She weighed 6 pounds-10 ounces. Glenis is the proud grandmother. Gothia told commissioners court how he now has something to talk about when the other members talk about when they tell stories about their grands. Parents are Hunter and Haley Gothia...Clint Ray of Orange also became a first time grandpa with the birth of Brewer Ray Richter.*****Of course Gothia is busy, busy, busy with the big upcoming national Bassmasters Tournament coming back to Orange next week. Gothia, before he was an elected official, worked hard with the Greater Orange Area Chamber of Commerce to entice a major fishing tournament here. The previous ones have drawn record crowds. The Bassmasters Tournament-Riverfest again will be held at the City of Orange Boat Ramp. Lots of sponsors are lined up, including a new one not seen here before. Christus Hospital Orange is sponsoring the main pavilion. That's a sign our local hospital under construction is close to being open. The new one will have a 24-7 emergency room plus a few rooms for in-patients. The county hasn't had a hospital in several years since Baptist Hospitals of Southeast Texas closed its one here*****Of course David Jones will be busy out at Bassmasters. The local business owner, Gopher Industrial, and civic leader has been supporting the tournament here from its beginnings. Once again, he will be spons oring the live fishing pond for the kids that will be open during set hours of the fish festival*****Dow Chemical also helps sponsor events at the festival and this past week, employees from the local plant worked along the boat ramp area picking up trash and debris. At the same time, workers from the Port of Orange were out in a boat towing in fallen logs and other large items that might give boaters problems navigating the waters...The Sabine River Authority has also contributed to help the tournament, along with future ones and the local anglers who crowd the boat ramp during good weather. SRA paid for the installation of a floating dock along the river bank near the launching-landing ramps. A dozen boats will be able to be tied up to the dock as they wait to use the ramps.*****High school graduations will be this week across the county. At West Orange-Stark, the ceremony will be held in the new event center recently completed on campus next to Dan R. Hooks Stadium. Mustangs graduate at 6 p.m. Friday. Bridge City will have graduation 8 p.m. Friday at the high school. Vidor's graduation will be Thursday at 7:30 p.m. at the high school, while Orangefield will go to the Montagne Center at Lamar University in Beaumont Saturday at 1 p.m. Little Cypress-Mauriceville High will also be at the Montagne Center, but on Friday evening at 7. Check in the Record newspapers for the valedictorians and salutatorians.

Graduations are not finished, but the Bridge City Class of 2024 is already to proclaim they are seniors. The high school has begun selling reserved parking spaces to upcoming seniors, but school officials have emphasized the spaces are not to be used until after the Class of 2023 graduates. The students will need to wait until July 19 to custom paint their reserved spaces. However, remember the school administration must approve the designs*****J.W. Dalton of Mauriceville organized a successful motorcycle ride, the Second Annual 500 for Life to emphasize how other drivers on highways and roadways need to be watchful for motorcyclists. This year, the group rode from Cowboy Harley in Beaumont to Columbanus in Orange. They also honored Van Jordan, who worked to start the awareness ride last year and later died of a heart attack. Speakers included Orange County Sheriff Lane Mooney, Orange Mayor Larry Spears, and Precinct 2 Commissioner Chris Sowell.*****Birthdays this past week included Kay Jones, who hit a milestone mark. She celebrated with Bobbie Jo Howeth, Sandra Gross, and Carolyn Curran, all friends since childhood. Looks like May 22 was the day to be born. Celebrants included Orange's assistant EDC director Hillary Gravett, West Orange City Councilor Lanie Brown, Jennifer Lynn Claybar, Mary Ann Fetchin, Corey Stark, Lois Ferrell and the Record's Margaret Toal. Summer Kovatch turned 12. One more year before she's a teenager, Chris and Christy. Other celebrants of another orbit around the sun include Randy Lane, Latouia DuBois, Jerrett Johnson, Colton Smith, Krystal Sanchez, and Chris Falgout. Scott and Joline Clark marked 31 years of marriage.


A few folks celebrating their big day in the upcoming week. May 24: Twins Joey and Rusty Williams, Chris Green and Lance Faulkner celebrate.*****May 25: Monica Stephens, Jo Lynn Harris, Judy Duncan, Sheryl Frazier. Also Mark Philpott, who is also celebrating he and Barbette’s wedding anniversary. Congratulations.*****May 26: Two of our favorite gals celebrate on this date. Happy Birthday to Barbara Olson and Jean Moreau, also Logan New and Dylan Ball.*****May 27: Keisha Tomplait, Bruce Montague and Charlene Terro celebrate.*****May 28: Debbie Guidry, Lisa Mesch, Kyle Smoke, Maureen McAllister, Michael Garcia, Rebecca Brumer and Kelli Boehme.*****May 29: Celebrating today are Matt Bryant, Chief Sam Kitchell,*****May 30: Today is Memorial Day. Happy Birthday to Dr. Amber Dunn, Judge Rex Peveto, Dr. David Olson, Brian Ousley, Clint Worthy, Kimberlea Worthy, Derek George, Nikki Barron and Nikki Fisette. (Note: After all these many years I’ve known them I just realized that Barbara and Dr. David Olson have May birthdays just four days apart, May 26/May 30.) To place birthday or anniversary announcements contact us at therecordlive.com or 409-886-7183.


At midmorning it started raining; by lunchtime, Calvin Breaux and Mason Comeaux got rained out on dere construction job. Dey ate dere lunch dem, and went to Tee-Boy’s Bar and Grill for a few beers.

Da rain kept coming down, eight inches in all. Da guys dem, kept on drinking while da rain pour. By later afternoon, dem, dey were boat loop-legged and talking crazy bout dere wives being mad cause dey not home,

Comeaux blurred out, “Say Breaux, if I went to you house, and made love to you wife, would dat make us kin, hanh?”

“No Comeaux, but it sure would make us even.” Breaux replied.



May 3, 1999, 24 years ago, Moore, Okla. was destroyed by a tornado. On this Memorial week, when we remember our veterans killed in all wars, terror hits us again here at home. Scores were killed when Moore was again hit by a monster tornado, packing 200 mile per hour winds. For 40 minutes it left destruction over a mile wide. The 1999 twister was the highest recorded winds at 302 mph, killing 36 people and causing over $1 billion in damage. Despite the winds not being as strong, the May 20, 2013 tornado, 10 years ago, because of its time on the ground, left total destruction. Many children, kindergarten to third grade age, had been in a school hallway that no longer existed. Some of those small children were killed. That is so sad. What a blow to those young couples just starting out in life, losing their child, maybe two, and all their possessions. We take life for granted every day. During war we have learned to expect death but never consider how many of our follow citizens die yearly in natural disasters. The people of Moore had 15 minutes and were told everyone not underground were not likely to survive. An EF-5 storm on the Fujita Scale is the most powerful type of twister known to man. (Editor’s note: While remembering our veterans who were lost in battle, take time to say a prayer for our fellow citizens who today are killed because of gun violence which in 2023 is now commonplace.)*****You will never know how much I really appreciate your loyalty to this column. Thanks for your time. Stay safe. Take care and God bless.


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