Fire destroys Crafton-area home


Messenger photo by Joe Duty

Fire destroyed a home on Private Road 1607 off Texas 101 in the Crafton area Saturday afternoon. Multiple departments including Crafton, Chico, Alvord, Sunset and Bridgeport responded to a report of a house on fire in the 300 block of Private Road 1607, north of Chico just before 2 p.m. When the first units arrived, they found a mobile home completely engulfed in flames with a grass fire quickly spreading to other structures. Before firefighters were able to get the blaze under control, fire destroyed several vehicles and other outbuildings on the property. No one was injured. Firefighters battled the blaze in temperatures of around 107 degrees. Wise County EMS provided a cooling station for firefighters, and Red Cross was on the scene to provide bottled water to the firefighters and to assist the home’s occupant.

Print This Page Print This Page

Posted in Breaking News, Update0 Comments

Update for Friday, July 20, 2018


PARADISE FIRE – A barn and truck were lost in a blaze that also burned approximately an acre at 2131 Sunflower Road Thursday morning near Paradise. Paradise, Cottondale, Boonsville and Bridgeport firefighters battled the fire that was reported around 11 a.m. “When we got on scene, there was a fully involved shed and vehicle,” said Captain Dakota Richardson of the Paradise Volunteer Fire Department. “It wasn’t actively moving anywhere. There was a lot of short grass. They were able to knock it down and stop the core progression.” Richardson expected firefighters to be on scene for several hours performing extensive overhaul in the heat. “They are sending three departments to every grass fire call specifically because of the heat and the conditions we are under,” Richardson said. Area firefighters responded to numerous other fires throughout the county during the day, including a grass fire on County Road 1550 north of Chico that burned several hay bales. Wise County remains under a burn ban that prohibits all outdoor burning.

EXTREME HEAT – Temperatures at the Decatur Municipal Airport hit 110 degrees yesterday afternoon, and it might hit the same mark today. An excessive heat warning remains in effect for Wise County through Sunday evening as afternoon highs each day are expected to top out between 105 and 110 degrees.

BOMB SQUAD CALLED FOR SUSPICIOUS SUITCASE – The Denton Fire Department Bomb Squad was called to a home south of Boyd yesterday evening after a suspicious suitcase was found. Wise County Sheriff Lane Akin said it appears it was part of a scam. An elderly couple received a call from a man saying they won $7 million. He told them to send $5,000. They sent the cash to the caller’s given address. Yesterday a box arrived at their home via UPS. After they signed for the package, they received another call from the same caller. Inside the box was a briefcase. The caller said their money was inside the briefcase, but he instructed them not to open it because a person who had the code would come and open the briefcase. The caller said if they attempted to open the briefcase a die pack would explode and ruin all of the money. The caller instructed the couple to go to the Apple store and purchase certain laptops and cellular devices. They went to the store and purchased about $20,000 worth of Apple devices to be sent to the caller. An Apple store employee became suspicious and reported it to a Fort Worth Police Department officer who was in the store. Fort Worth PD reported the incident to WCSO. Deputies went to the couple’s home last night. The Denton FD Bomb Squad X-rayed the package. Only paper was inside.

FORMER TRUSTEE CONVICTED FOR LEWD PHOTOS – Former Northwest School Board member Mel Fuller, who was arrested last October for possession of child pornography, has been given five years probation. According to Denton County court records, Fuller of Hurst, formerly of Trophy Club, pleaded guilty Wednesday in 16th Judicial District Court to possession of lewd visual material depicting children – a state jail felony. The court accepted his guilty plea and sentenced him to five years probation. That includes 120 hours of community service, according to court records. Fuller had served on the Northwest School Board from 2008 until the time of his arrest Oct. 31, 2017, for the third degree felony offense of possession of child pornography.

NATIONAL APPOINTMENT SECURED – Wise County Judge J.D. Clark this week was appointed chair of the Veterans and Military Services Committee, a subgroup of the National Association of Counties headquartered in Washington, D.C. The group seeks county best practices and policies to promote innovative programs, services and benefits for the U.S. military and its veterans. He is also vice chair of the Community Workforce and Economic Development Committee. Clark just completed a two-year term as chairman of the Rural Action Caucus with NACo. He will remain a member of RAC and is starting his second year as secretary of the National Conference of Republican County Officials, also within NACo. Read more in the weekend Messenger on newsstands Saturday.

DECATUR MARKET – The Decatur Market will hold Splash Day from 8 a.m.-1 p.m. Saturday at the Wise County Fairgrounds. The event will feature a 31-foot water slide. There will also be a watermelon eating contest. Local produce and arts and crafts will be available for purchase.

MUSIC DEMONSTRATIONS – Fiddle champion Dale Morris will be at the Bridgeport Public Library at 4 p.m. today offering free fiddle and guitar demonstrations for those interested in learning to play an instrument.

QUARTER AUCTION – The Bridgeport Women’s Club will host a Quarter Auction 5:30 p.m. July 31 at 1102 Lawdwin St. All proceeds go towards scholarships. Vendor spaces are available. Call 940-366-0186 or visit Event Page, www.facebook.com/events/2105509233105530/?ti=ia.

KC BINGO – The Knights of Columbus Council 9644 will hold bingo from 6-9 p.m. Saturday at the Bridgeport Lions Club Hall, 1107 8th Street.

ART EXHIBIT – The Decatur Visitor’s Center will host Reflections on Wise County: A Contemporary Perspective featuring the art work of Decatur artist Byron Watson July 21-28 at the Decatur Visitor’s Center. A reception will be held 6:30-8:30 p.m. this Saturday.

VETERANS BREAKFAST – The Wise County Veterans Group will meet for breakfast at the Decatur Conference Center at 8 a.m. Saturday. Guest speaker will be Fiske Hanley, a WWII B-29 flight engineer shot down over Japan during the closing hours of WWII. Following his remarks, the group will resume questions at the WCV Memorial Museum in Bridgeport. All veterans and interested parties are invited.

FUNERALS – Memorial service for Kenneth Solomon, 55, of Boyd will be held at a later date. Hawkins Funeral Home in Bridgeport is handling arrangements.

FUNERAL for Fred Peek, 63, of Decatur is 2 p.m. today at Hawkins Chapel in Bridgeport.

MEMORIAL service for Ashley McCollum, 32, of Justin is 5 p.m. Saturday at Hawkins Funeral Home Chapel in Boyd.

NO SERVICE for George E. Lacourse Jr. is planned at this time. Jones Family Funeral Home-Decatur is handling arrangements.

Print This Page Print This Page

Posted in Update0 Comments

Barn, truck burn in grass fire on Sunflower Road


A barn and truck were lost in a blaze that also burned approximately an acre at 2131 Sunflower Road Thursday morning near Paradise.
Paradise, Cottondale, Boonsville and Bridgeport firefighters battled the fire that was reported around 11 a.m.
“When we got on scene, there was a fully involved shed and vehicle,” said Captain Dakota Richardson of the Paradise Volunteer Fire Department.
“It wasn’t actively moving anywhere. There was a lot of short grass. They were able to knock it down and stop the core progression.”
Richardson expected firefighters to be on scene for several hours performing extensive overhaul in the heat.
An excessive heat warning is in place in the county with temperatures expected to be above 105 this afternoon.
“They are sending three departments to every grass fire call specifically because of the heat and the conditions we are under,” Richardson said.
The National Weather Service also issued a fire danger statement Thursday morning warning of elevated fire risk as winds were expected to increase to 10 to 15 mph along with the extreme heat and relative humidity levels under 20 percent.
In the Keetch-Byram Drought Index (KBDI), which measures the wildfire potential by taking into account the soil moisture, the county is at an average of 690, the highest in the state, on a scale ranging from 0 to 800. The top end of the scale represents completely dry conditions. Much of the county is above 700 with the high of 727.
Cody Powell, Wise County Emergency Management Coordinator, said the heat is the biggest worry today.
“Along with the dryness, wind and relative humidity, the X factor is the heat,” Powell said. “In 110 degree heat, it doesn’t take long to tax guys. A lot of the guys were out fighting fires yesterday. If something big happens, it’ll deplete resources quickly.”
A 90-day burn ban is in place.

 

Print This Page Print This Page

Posted in Breaking News, Update0 Comments

Fire risk increases in Wise County


Excessive heat, dry vegetation, low humidity and the addition of winds picking up today are expected to create dangerous fire conditions in Wise County.
The National Weather Service issued a fire danger statement Thursday morning for Wise and several surrounding counties with high temperatures expected to range between 105 and 110, relative humidity between 10 and 20 percent and winds between 10 and 15 mph.
Paradise and Cottondale firefighters are battling a barn, vehicle and grass fire on Sunflower Road.
In the Keetch-Byram Drought Index (KBDI), which measures the wildfire potential by taking into account the soil moisture, the county is at an average of 690, the highest in the state, on a scale ranging from 0 to 800. The top end of the scale represents completely dry conditions. Much of the county is above 700 with the high of 727.
Cody Powell, Wise County Emergency Management Coordinator, said the heat is the biggest worry today. An excessive heat warning is effect for today and Friday with temperatures exceeding 105. It’s the first time since August 2011 that the National Weather Service has issued an excessive heat warning for North Central Texas.
“Along with the dryness, wind and relative humidity, the X factor is the heat,” Powell said. “In 110 degree heat, it doesn’t take long to tax guys. A lot of the guys were out fighting fires yesterday. If something big happens, it’ll deplete resources quickly.”
Several departments battled a large grass fire between Alvord and Decatur Wednesday afternoon.
The Wise County Sheriff’s Office is dispatching three departments on the initial response to any fires and putting the next nearest station on standby. Powell said Wise County EMS is stocked and ready to perform rehab at any fires.
Powell suggested residents consider dropping off cases of water and sports drinks at fire stations to help.
“The biggest thing citizens can do is stop by and drop off a case of water or [sports drinks],” he said. “They are almost all volunteers and they are the ones keeping the county from burning.”
A 90-day burn ban is effect and the Sheriff’s Office is issuing citations for violations.

Print This Page Print This Page

Posted in Breaking News, Update0 Comments

Update for Thursday, July 19, 2018


GAS LEAK FORCES EVACUATIONS – Eight homes along Garland and Murvil streets in the Lipsey Addition in Decatur were evacuated for more than two hours Wednesday evening as a precaution due to a propane tank leak. Residents were allowed to return to their homes around 8:30 p.m. after Decatur firefighters gave the all clear. The relief valve on a propane tank in the 3100 block of South Murvil released shortly after 5:30 p.m. A neighbor reported what sounded like an explosion. “It was venting so hard that it was blowing the leaves off the trees,” said Decatur Deputy Fire Chief Deroy Bennett said. Bennett said the heat, the temperature reached 105 in Decatur Wednesday, likely caused the valve to release. The aged valve on the tank would not reset. “We did several things to cool it off,” Bennett said. “We had the tank hauled off.” The propane company that serviced the tank estimated that it could have needed a couple of days to vent. Given that timeline, the choice was made to remove it. The tank vented about 60 gallons. “There was just enough breeze that it never collected,” Bennett said. Bennett said they used sensors to check the entire area before giving the OK to allow residents back in.

EXCESSIVE HEAT WARNING – The heat is on and it will continue. As temperatures hit 105 at Decatur Municipal Airport Wednesday afternoon, the National Weather Service issued an “excessive heat warning” for Wise County and the rest of North Central Texas for Thursday and Friday. Temperatures are expected to hit 107 and 108 Thursday and Friday. “Excessive heat warnings are issued when we expect temperatures to reach 105 or the heat index over 110,” said Juan Hernandez, meteorologist with the National Weather Service Office in Forth Worth. “Temperatures will exceed 105 or above through weekend. They are not that common. The last time we issued an excessive heat warning was August 2011.” The extreme heat is being caused by a ridge of high pressure centered over New Mexico, Hernandez said. The heat is exacerbating severe drought conditions already in place in the county. In the Keetch-Byram Drought Index (KBDI), which measures the wildfire potential by taking into account the soil moisture, the county is at an average of 684 on a scale ranging from 0 to 800. The top end of the scale represents completely dry conditions. Much of the county is above 700 with the high of 727. Several fire departments battled a grass fire on Private Road 1272 in the extreme heat across the county as humidity levels dipped under 20 percent. Hernandez said the calm winds were preventing a fire weather warning. “With the heat and lack of rain everything is drying out. We expect an uptick in the fires this weekend,” he said. Wise County has a 90-day burn ban in place. Temperatures are finally expected to dip below the triple digits next week as the high pressure system moves to the west, Hernandez said.

BOYD NAMES PERSON OF YEAR – Jennifer Nichols, the branch manager at Wells Fargo in Boyd, was named Boyd’s Person of the Year Tuesday night by the city council. Nichols was recognized for her service to the community by helping those in need. She has recently been helping a disabled resident with getting his utilities reconnected, his medications delivered along with getting him meals through Meals on Wheels. Nichols has also worked with several local organizations, including the Boyd Education Foundation. She said she learned service to others from her parents, a minister and teacher.

STROKE SUPPORT GROUP – The Stroke Overcomers Support Group will have their monthly meeting at 6 p.m. today at the Wise Health System west campus, Decatur (rehabilitation cafeteria). This group is designed to assist stroke survivors and their families with hope and information. This month’s topic is the importance of controlling diabetes to reduce the risk of strokes. Call Dennis McCreary, 817-307-9588 or Casey Rauschuber, 940-626-2457.

ART EXHIBIT – The Decatur Visitor’s Center will host Reflections on Wise County: A Contemporary Perspective featuring the art work of Decatur artist Byron Watson July 21-28 at the Decatur Visitor’s Center. A reception will be held 6:30-8:30 p.m. this Saturday. Read more in the current midweek issue of All Around Wise.

VETERANS BREAKFAST – The Wise County Veterans Group will meet for breakfast at the Decatur Conference Center at 8 a.m. Saturday. Guest speaker will be Fiske Hanley, a WWII B-29 flight engineer shot down over Japan during the closing hours of WWII. Following his remarks, the group will resume questions at the WCV Memorial Museum in Bridgeport. All veterans and interested parties are invited.

BETTER BREATHERS CLUB – Wise Health System will hold its first meeting of the Better Breathers Club, a club for all lung patients and their families and caregivers, 3 p.m. today at Decatur Public Library. For more information or to RSVP call Angie at 817-862-7796.

BOOK SIGNING – The Decatur Public Library will host local author Sylvia Hornback today. She will sign copies of her novel “The Mallard Conspiracy” beginning at 5 p.m. She will discuss her book at 6 p.m. Copies of the book will be for sale.

FUNERAL – Service for Fred Peek, 63, of Decatur is 2 p.m. Friday at Hawkins Funeral Home Chapel in Bridgeport. Family visitation is 6-8 tonight at the funeral home.

Print This Page Print This Page

Posted in Update0 Comments

Gas leak forces evacuations in Lipsey Addition


Eight homes along Garland and Murvil streets in the Lipsey Addition in Decatur were evacuated for more than two hours Wednesday evening as a precaution due to a propane tank leak.
Residents were allowed to return to their homes around 8:30 p.m. after Decatur firefighters gave the all clear.
The relief valve on a propane tank in the 3100 block of South Murvil released shortly after 5:30 p.m. A neighbor reported what sounded like an explosion.
“It was venting so hard that it was blowing the leaves off the trees,” said Decatur Deputy Fire Chief Deroy Bennett said.
Bennett said the heat, the temperature reached 105 in Decatur Wednesday, likely caused the valve to release. The aged valve on the tank would not reset.
“We did several things to cool it off,” Bennett said. “We had the tank hauled off.”
The propane company that serviced the tank estimated that it could have needed a couple of days to vent. Given that timeline, the choice was made to remove it.
The tank vented about 60 gallons.
“There was just enough breeze that it never collected,” Bennett said.
Bennett said they used sensors to check the entire area before giving the OK to allow residents back in.

Print This Page Print This Page

Posted in Breaking News, Update0 Comments

Excessive heat warning issued for county


The heat is on and it will continue.
As temperatures hit 105 at Decatur Municipal Airport Wednesday afternoon, the National Weather Service issued an “excessive heat warning” for Wise County and the rest of North Central Texas for Thursday and Friday. Temperatures are expected to hit 107 and 108 Thursday and Friday.
“Excessive heat warnings are issued when we expect temperatures to reach 105 or the heat index over 110,” said Juan Hernandez, meteorologist with the National Weather Service Office in Forth Worth. “Temperatures will exceed 105 or above through weekend. They are not that common. The last time we issued an excessive heat warning was August 2011.”
The extreme heat is being caused by a ridge of high pressure centered over New Mexico, Hernandez said.
The heat is exacerbating severe drought conditions already in place in the county.
In the Keetch-Byram Drought Index (KBDI), which measures the wildfire potential by taking into account the soil moisture, the county is at an average of 684 on a scale ranging from 0 to 800. The top end of the scale represents completely dry conditions. Much of the county is above 700 with the high of 727.
Several fire departments battled a grass fires on Private Road 1272 in the extreme heat across the county as humidity levels dipped under 20 percent.
Hernandez said the calm winds were preventing a fire weather warning.
“With the heat and lack of rain everything is drying out. We expect an uptick in the fires this weekend,” he said.
Wise County has a 90-day burn ban in place.
Temperatures are finally expected to dip below the triple digits next week as the high pressure system moves to the west, Hernandez said.

Print This Page Print This Page

Posted in Breaking News, Update0 Comments

Update for Wednesday, July 18, 2018


TRAFFIC STOPS LEAD TO MARIJUANA ARRESTS – In the span of less than 24 hours earlier this week, officers seized more than 100 pounds of marijuana passing through the county in a pair of traffic stops. Around 11:30 p.m. Sunday, a Texas Department of Public Safety trooper stopped an RV traveling south on U.S. 81/287 south of Decatur for several moving traffic violations. A K9 unit was called to assist and alerted to the odor of illegal substances in the vehicle. A search of the RV revealed 53.1 pounds of marijuana. The driver, Dagoberto Cabrera, 53, of Homestead, Fla., was arrested for delivery of marijuana 50 to 2,000 pounds, a first degree felony offense. Around 8:15 p.m. Monday, a deputy with the North Texas Sheriffs’ Criminal Interdiction Unit noticed a passenger car southbound on U.S. 81/287 near the roadside park north of Decatur leave the roadway and then drive back onto the road. The vehicle was stopped, and the driver, Calvin Charles Hightower, 72, of San Jose, Calif., admitted to having marijuana in the vehicle. The officer discovered 53 pounds of marijuana hidden in two duffel bags and a dog food bag. He was arrested for possession of marijuana 50-2,000 pounds.

GETTING WARMER – A heat advisory remains in effect today in Wise County with an expected high of 105, and an excessive heat watch has been issued from Thursday afternoon to Friday evening as temperatures are expected to top out around 108 both days. The temperature reached 105 yesterday at the Decatur Municipal Airport.

BETTER BREATHERS CLUB – Wise Health System will hold its first meeting of the Better Breathers Club, a club for all lung patients and their families and caregivers, 3 p.m. Thursday at Decatur Public Library. For more information or to RSVP call Angie at 817-862-7796.

BOOK SIGNING – Local author Sylvia Hornback will discuss and sign copies of her novel “The Mallard Conspiracy” 5-7 p.m. Thursday at the Decatur Public Library.

FOOTBALL CLASS – Helmet and Heels for ladies who want to learn a little more about football is slated for 6 p.m. Aug. 2 in the Paradise High School cafeteria. Registration is $20 and includes a T-shirt and meal. Call Christi Ryle, 940-210-2739.

YOUNG CHILD PROGRAM – Chico Public Library will hold its 1, 2, 3 Play with Me program 11 a.m.-noon today. Designed for infants and toddlers (0-4), this program provides children and their adults with the opportunity to socialize and learn through play. Call Michelle at 940-644-2330.

ALVORD SUMMER READING – Today’s Alvord Public Library’s summer reading program, “Hoedown,” will include instruction on a country dance, Cotton-Eyed Joe. All programs are held at Alvord City Hall, 215 W. Elm St., Alvord, from 10-11 a.m. and are followed by a visit to the library to check out books and receive goody bags.

FUNERALS – Service for Fred Peek, 63, of Decatur is 2 p.m. Friday at Hawkins Funeral Home Chapel in Bridgeport. Family visitation is 6-8 p.m. Thursday at the funeral home.

NO SERVICE for George E. Lacourse Jr. is planned at this time. Jones Family Funeral Home-Decatur is handling arrangements.

Print This Page Print This Page

Posted in Update0 Comments

Update for Tuesday, July 17, 2018


DECATUR ISD APPOINTS NEW OFFICERS – A month after splitting on the vote to keep superintendent Judi Whitis, Decatur ISD school board has a new slate of officers. Decatur ISD trustees named Cheri Boyd the new school board president Monday after reorganizing officers. Trustees appointed Rex Hoskins vice president and Jennifer Wren board secretary. All three appointments had a 5-2 vote with previous president Wade Watson and vice president Matt Joiner casting dissenting votes. Wren called for the reorganization to be put on the agenda after June’s 4-3 decision to keep Whitis. Watson, Joiner and Marsha Hafer voted against the move. “I felt like we needed to start with a slate of officers that wanted to work with Dr. Whitis to improve the district,” Wren said. “After the last meeting, I was worried with the officers that we had they would not be willing to communicate with her effectively to improve Decatur ISD.” Boyd, who was elected to the board in May 2016, takes over as president. Last month, she read the statement voicing the majority support for Whitis. “I just hope to do a good job and assist the board in supporting Dr. Whitis in moving forward to be a successful and effective superintendent,” Boyd said. “[The change] is reflective of the vote last month. Hopefully moving forward it will be a smooth transition to be supportive of Dr. Whitis and the district.” After the meeting, Watson said he welcomed Boyd as the new board president. “The board voted and I will respect the vote,” Watson said. “I will remain a board member. “The new slate of officers agree with the direction the district is heading.” Watson pointed out that his vote last month showed he obviously did not.

HEAT ADVISORY ISSUED – The National Weather Service in Fort Worth has issued a heat advisory, which is in effect from noon today to 7 p.m. Wednesday, for Wise County. High temperatures ranging from 103 to 105 are possible each afternoon. The very hot temperatures will increase the risk of heat related illnesses. Take the necessary precautions.

WHITE NAMED ASSISTANT SUPERINTENDENT – Decatur ISD trustees approved naming Steve White the assistant superintendent for operations Monday with a 5-2 vote. Wade Watson and Matt Joiner voted against the promotion, citing the need for additional consideration and review of the structure of the administration. Trustee Jennifer Wren in moving the motion for the appointment said superintendent Judi Whitis was hired to pick her employees. White has been with the district since January overseeing the transportation department. The former superintendent at Granger, Alpine, Aspermont and Thrall will oversee safety, attendance, help with discipline, health services, transfers and handle parent concerns at the district level.

BOYD TO NAME PERSON OF THE YEAR – The Boyd city council will honor the city’s Person of the Year at 6:30 tonight at its meeting.

DANCING AT THE LIBRARY – Children ages 5 to 11 are invited to join the Libraries Rock summer program at the Chico Public Library 11 a.m. today. Participants will learn about tinikling, a traditional dance from the Philippines. For more information contact Michelle or Amber at 940-644-2330.

KC BINGO – The Knights of Columbus Council 9644 will hold bingo from 6-9 p.m. Saturday at the Bridgeport Lions Club Hall, 1107 8th Street.

CLAY SHOOT – The Wise Health Foundation will hold its annual Clay Shoot Friday, Aug. 24, at the Fossil Pointe Sporting Grounds. Check-in is at 8 a.m. with the shoot kicking-off at 9. Proceeds help support Wise Health System programs, services and the purchase of innovative equipment. Visit WiseHealthFoundation.com to learn more or register online. For information call the Wise Health Foundation at 940-626-1384.

FUNERALS – Service for Fred Peek, 63, of Decatur is 2 p.m. Friday at Hawkins Funeral Home Chapel in Bridgeport. Family visitation is 6-8 p.m. Thursday at the funeral home.

NO SERVICE for George E. Lacourse, Jr. is planned at this time. Jones Family Funeral Home-Decatur is handling arrangements.

Print This Page Print This Page

Posted in Update0 Comments

Decatur ISD names new board officers


A month after splitting on the vote to keep superintendent Judi Whitis, Decatur ISD school board has a new slate of officers.
Decatur ISD trustees named Cheri Boyd the new school board president Monday after reorganizing officers. Trustees appointed Rex Hoskins vice president and Jennifer Wren board secretary.
All three appointments had a 5-2 vote with previous president Wade Watson and vice president Matt Joiner casting dissenting votes.
Wren called for the reorganization to be put on the agenda after June’s 4-3 decision to keep Whitis. Watson, Joiner and Marsha Hafer voted against the move.
“I felt like we needed to start with a slate of officers that wanted to work with Dr. Whitis to improve the district,” Wren said. “After the last meeting, I was worried with the officers that we had they would not be willing to communicate with her effectively to improve Decatur ISD.”
Boyd, who was elected to the board in May 2016, takes over as president. Last month, she read the statement voicing the majority support for Whitis.
“I just hope to do a good job and assist the board in supporting Dr. Whitis in moving forward to be a successful and effective superintendent,” Boyd said.
“[The change] is reflective of the vote last month. Hopefully moving forward it will be a smooth transition to be supportive of Dr. Whitis and the district.”
After the meeting, Watson said he welcomed Boyd as the new board president.
“The board voted and I will respect the vote,” Watson said. “I will remain a board member.
“The new slate of officers agree with the direction the district is heading.”
Watson pointed out that his vote last month showed he obviously did not.
Before a pair of long closed sessions in June to evaluate Whitis and discuss her contract, Watson sent Whitis a two-page letter detailing “multiple concerns [that] have been brought to the attention of several [board] members recently.”
Last week after the agenda for the meeting was posted with the reorganization of officers, Watson mentioned concerns about communication. He reiterated that Monday after the meeting.
“Communication has not improved. Communication is still lacking between the superintendent and the board after our split vote,” Watson said.
Boyd disagreed when asked about communication.
“That’s not a problem on my part. When I’ve asked questions of Dr. Whitis, it’s never been a problem,” Boyd said. “She’s always been accessible.”

Print This Page Print This Page

Posted in Breaking News, Update0 Comments

Update for Monday, July 16, 2018


DECATUR BOARD TO VOTE ON REORGANIZATION – Decatur ISD trustees will consider the reorganization of board officers tonight in their first meeting since recording the 4-3 vote to keep superintendent Judi Whitis on the job last month. Board President Wade Watson said the reorganization discussion was placed on the agenda at the request of another trustee. “There are differing views on the board as evidenced by the 4-3 split vote,” Watson said. “If it’s the board’s decision for someone else to be president, I’ll respect the board’s decision.” Trustees will also discuss the construction projects at the high school – the bistro and athletic facilities. Trustees will also consider raising lunch prices by 10 cents to $2.70 at the elementary campuses and $2.90 at the secondary campuses.

TURNING UP THE HEAT – Triple-digit high temperatures return to the forecast this week. After a high of 98 today, high temperatures the rest of the week are expected to be between 101 to 106 each day through Sunday.

FRIDAY RAINFALL – Bridgeport received 0.6 of an inch of rain Friday. No rain is in the forecast this week.

DIABETES SUPPORT GROUP – Wise Health System, the Wise and Montague County Medical Society and Renew Home Health will host a Diabetes Support Group 6:30 tonight in the Education Room of the hospital in Decatur. Dr. Brad Faglie will host a question-and-answer session on the trials and triumphs of living with diabetes and plans of action. If you have diabetes or know someone with diabetes, you are invited. If it’s your first meeting, come at 6:15 to meet Dr. Faglie and get an introduction to the basics.

DIABETES CLASSES – Total Diabetes Care at Wise Health System will hold diabetes education classes in Decatur today. The beginner class will be offered at 3 p.m., and the advanced class will be offered at 4 p.m. Both classes will be held at Wise Health System in the Education Room on the second floor. The classes are intended to help those with diabetes better understand and manage the disease. Classes are free and will be taught by Dick Gilley RN, CCRN, CDE. No RSVP required. Call Gilley at 940-626-1890.

ALVORD SUMMER READING – On Wednesday, the Alvord Public Library’s summer reading program, “Hoedown,” will include instruction on a country dance, Cotton-Eyed Joe. All programs are held at Alvord City Hall, 215 W. Elm St., Alvord, from 10-11 a.m. and are followed by a visit to the library to check out books and receive goody bags.

SCHOOL SUPPLY DRIVE – Decatur Medical Lodge is partnering with Wise Area Relief Mission (WARM) in Decatur to provide school supplies for junior high and high school students. Items like paper, pens and pencils, spiral notebooks, lunch totes and backpacks are appreciated. Drop donations by DML at 701 W. Bennett Road anytime before Aug. 13.

DEMOCRATIC MEETING – The Wise County Democratic Party will host Delonia Watson, Democratic nominee for the Second Court of Appeals, at the party’s meeting 6:30 p.m. today at 106 S. Trinity Street, Decatur. Visit www.wisedemocrats.com.

FUNERALS – Memorial service for George E. Lacourse Jr., 52, of Decatur is pending at Jones Family Funeral Home in Decatur.

SERVICE for Fred Peek, 63, of Decatur is pending at Hawkins Funeral Home in Bridgeport.

Print This Page Print This Page

Posted in Update0 Comments

Update for Friday, July 13, 2018


RHOME MAN KILLED IN PLANE CRASH – An 86-year-old man was killed when his single-engine aircraft crashed in a field north of Farm Road 407 near Fairview Airport Thursday afternoon, according to Department of Public Safety spokesman Lonny Haschel. The pilot, identified as Dominick Pellegreno of Rhome, was the sole occupant of the plane, described as a 1936 Rose Parakeet, fixed wing aircraft. James Edwards, a New Fairview resident who lives just outside where the plane crashed, said he witnessed the plane take off, but didn’t see what caused the crash. “I watched him take off and turn back around,” Edwards said. “It took off loud and instantly, no sound.” Haschel said it is unknown at this time was caused the plane to go down. He added the Federal Aviation Administration and the National Traffic Safety Board have been notified and will be conducting an investigation.

COUNCIL DENIES TOWNHOMES – After a contentious meeting, the Rhome City Council voted 5-0 Thursday night to deny a controversial project that would have built townhomes on Morris Street. The council reversed course after originally going against the planning and zoning commission, who recommended they reject the plan several weeks ago.

FORMER PARTY CHAIR DIES – Former Wise County Republican Party Chairman D.A. Sharpe died yesterday. A memorial service will be held later in the middle of August at the Sharpe family home in Aurora. Details will be announced on his web page at www.DASharpe.com. Private family interment of the cremated remains will be at Greenwood Cemetery in Fort Worth.

NOT MUCH RAIN – Parts of Wise County only received a trace of rain yesterday. The heaviest rainfall amount was in Greenwood where 0.1 of an inch was recorded.

DEMOCRATIC MEETING – The Wise County Democratic Party will host Delonia Watson, Democratic nominee for the Second Court of Appeals, at the party’s meeting 6:30 p.m. Monday at 106 S. Trinity Street, Decatur. Visit www.wisedemocrats.com.

COLOR RUN – Wise County 4-H’s Run for the Clovers Color Run is Saturday at McCarroll Middle School. The event will include a 5K and 1-mile family fun run, both with multiple color stations promising a rainbow-dipped finish. The 5K starts at 7:30 a.m., and the 1-mile at 8. Proceeds benefit local charities. Sign up at wcmess.com/runforclovers. Early registration is $10 for kids and $15 for adults. Prices go up on the day of the event. Call 940-627-3341.

FRIDAY NIGHT MARKET – Wise County Market Days teamed up with the city of Bridgeport, Economic Development Corp. and Main Street for a Friday night event. It kicks off this week at the corner of 12th and Halsell Streets, open 5-9 p.m. It’s planned to be open every Friday, as long as produce is available. The market will feature fresh produce, free range eggs, local raised beef and lamb, local honey, jelly and jams, plus baked goods and pickles.

DIVE-IN MOVIE – Bridgeport Box Office will present “Flipper” on Saturday at Bridgeport City Pool. Pool admission is required, and concessions are available for purchase. The pool opens at 7 p.m., and the movie will start at dusk. Call 640-683-3480.

DOG ADOPTION EVENT – An adoption event for the Bridgeport Animal Shelter is 9 a.m.-1 p.m. Saturday at Fred’s, 801 Turkey Creek Trail in Bridgeport. A patio plant sale will be held, and all sales will go to a partner rescue to be used for the animals at this shelter.

FUNDRAISER – A fundraiser and silent auction will be held from 4-8 p.m. Saturday at Pleasant Grove Cowboy Church in Decatur, 4789 FM 730, for Behrin Brown. Brown was born with a stage 2 laryngeal cleft. He will travel to Boston late this summer to the Esophageal and Airway Treatment Center at Children’s Hospital of Boston to undergo surgery to repair his cleft. Tickets are $10 at the door. Donations are accepted.

FEEDING WISE KIDS – The Feeding Wise Kids summer feeding program continues its Friday distribution at the following locations and times: (Boyd) First United Methodist Church 10:30-11 a.m.; (Bridgeport) Bridgeport Elementary School parking lot 10:30-noon, Cates Street Baptist Church 10:30-11 a.m., First Baptist Church 10:30-11 a.m., First United Methodist Church 10:30-11 a.m., Presbyterian Church 10:30-11 a.m.; (Slidell) Slidell High School 8 a.m.-3 p.m. Other locations and times are as follows: Chico First United Methodist Church 9:30 a.m.-1:30 p.m. on Wednesdays, Chisholm Trail Middle School and Seven Hills Elementary in Rhome on Thursdays.

FUNERALS – Service for Rollins Bilby, 83, of Lake Bridgeport is 2 p.m. Saturday at Hawkins Funeral Home Chapel in Bridgeport with burial at Mountain Home Cemetery in Bryson. Family visitation is 6-8 tonight at the funeral home.

FUNERAL for Eddie Cordero, 80, of Bridgeport is 10 a.m. today at The Father’s House in Decatur with burial at Oaklawn Cemetery. Hawkins-Bridgeport is handling arrangements.

MEMORIAL service for Brian Charles Webb, 31, of Bridgeport is 5 p.m. Saturday at Hawkins Chapel in Bridgeport.

Print This Page Print This Page

Posted in Update0 Comments

Update for Thursday, July 12, 2018


SUSPECTED CAR THIEF IDENTIFIED – The man who led officers on a chase that involved two stolen vehicles Monday morning has been identified as Colt Evan Slate, 28, of Duncan, Okla. Slate is suspected of driving a vehicle stolen out of Bowie. He wrecked north of Alvord during the chase, fled that vehicle and stole an Atmos Energy vehicle as he continued to lead officers on a chase that eventually ended in Fort Worth. He was charged with driving while intoxicated, evading arrest and unauthorized use of a vehicle and remains in the Wise County Jail.

CHANCE OF RAIN – Today’s forecast includes a 40 percent chance of showers or thunderstorms with a high of 94 degrees.

DOG ADOPTION EVENT – An adoption event for the Bridgeport Animal Shelter is 9 a.m.-1 p.m. Saturday at Fred’s, 801 Turkey Creek Trail in Bridgeport. A patio plant sale will be held, and all sales will go to a partner rescue to be used for the animals at this shelter.

FUNDRAISER – A fundraiser and silent auction will be held from 4-8 p.m. Saturday at Pleasant Grove Cowboy Church in Decatur, 4789 FM 730, for Behrin Brown. Brown was born with a stage 2 laryngeal cleft. He will travel to Boston late this summer to the Esophageal and Airway Treatment Center at Children’s Hospital of Boston to undergo surgery to repair his cleft. Tickets are $10 at the door. Donations are accepted.

SCHOOL SUPPLY DRIVE – Wise Hope Shelter and Crisis Center is holding its annual school supply drive for children whose lives have been touched by family violence. Their greatest supply needs include: composition notebooks, Kleenex, dry erase markers, manila paper, Clorox wipes, lunch sacks, gallon and quart size Ziploc bags, hand sanitizer, color folders w/brads and pockets, paper plates and paper towels. Supplies and monetary donations may be dropped off at the Outreach Office, 608 N. Bus. U.S. 81/287 in Decatur. Call Janice Watkins, 940-626-4585.

VETERANS EVENTS – Rhome Veterans will be holding several events in July at the Rhome Public Library. Movie night will feature the showing of “Max” at 6:30 p.m. Friday. The auxiliary meeting is 9:30 a.m. Saturday with the veterans meeting at 10 a.m. On July 28, the group will visit the Museum of North Texas History in Wichita Falls. The tour will leave the library at 8 a.m. Lunch will follow the tour.

STATE CHAMPIONS MONUMENT – Monuments honoring the members of Boyd’s 1958, 1983 and 2004 football teams will be unveiled at the season opener Aug. 31. A group is trying to track down all the players and coaches for the teams to be included on the monuments. Call Boyd High School, 940-433-2327, or Sue Carter, 479-876-1562.

FUNERALS – Service for Rollins Bilby, 83, of Lake Bridgeport is 2 p.m. Saturday at Hawkins Funeral Home Chapel in Bridgeport with burial at Mountain Home Cemetery in Bryson. Family visitation is 6-8 p.m. Friday at the funeral home.

FUNERAL for Eddie Cordero, 80, of Bridgeport is 10 a.m. Friday at The Father’s House in Decatur with burial at Oaklawn Cemetery. Family visitation is 6-8 tonight at Hawkins-Bridgeport.

MEMORIAL service for Brian Charles Webb, 31, of Bridgeport is 5 p.m. Saturday at Hawkins Chapel in Bridgeport.

PRIVATE memorial for Yvonne Crownover, 56, of Decatur will be at a later date. Hawkins Funeral Home in Boyd is handling arrangements.

Print This Page Print This Page

Posted in Update0 Comments

Update for Wednesday, July 11, 2018


COUNTY UNDER FULL BURN BAN – Wise County commissioners Tuesday approved a full, 90-day burn ban, effective immediately. The action was taken at the recommendation of the county fire marshal’s office. All outdoor burning is prohibited. Violating the ban is a Class C misdemeanor and punishable by a fine up to $500. Sheriff Lane Akin said his officers will have a zero tolerance policy when investigating burn ban violations. The previous 90-day ban was effective only on Red Flag days or high fire danger days as designated by the National Weather Service. Under the new burn ban, there are specific rules for outdoor cooking and welding. Go to www.co.wise.tx.us and click on the Burn Ban link at the top of the page for those guidelines.

WRECK INJURES 3 – A rollover wreck on Texas 114 in Rhome sent three people to the hospital Tuesday afternoon. Rhome police and fire rescue responded to a call around 2 p.m. that a Chevrolet pickup had overturned. Rhome officer Bryan Pickler said the truck hydroplaned and flipped after taking the on-ramp to Texas 114 too fast. The driver and two passengers were transported to Wise Health System with non-life threatening injuries.

YOUNG CHILD PROGRAM – Chico Public Library will hold its 1, 2, 3 Play with Me program 11 a.m.-noon today. Designed for infants and toddlers (0-4), this program provides children and their adults with the opportunity to socialize and learn through play. Call Michelle at 940-644-2330.

DIVE-IN MOVIE – Bridgeport Box Office will present “Flipper” on Saturday at Bridgeport City Pool. Pool admission is required, and concessions are available for purchase. The pool opens at 7 p.m., and the movie will start at dusk. Call 640-683-3480.

READING WITH DOGS – Tail Waggin’ Tutors will be at Rhome Public Library 2-3:30 p.m. today. Honey and Ava, certified by Therapy Dogs International, along with their handler, Katherine Prado, will provide a stress-free, relaxing environment for children to practice reading. Each reader is allotted 15 minutes. Call 817-636-2767. The library is at 265 West B.C. Rhome Avenue.

WASHER TOURNAMENT – The Put Yo Money Where Yo Mouth Is washer tournament is July 24 at the Wise County Old Settlers Reunion. Registration is at 6 p.m. and the tournament begins at 7 p.m. Rules and information is available at decaturtx.com.

LET’S MAKE MUSIC – The Alvord Public Library’s Summer Reading Program for today will include a live flute performance, demonstration of some wind instruments, and making kazoos. All programs are held at Alvord City Hall, 205 W. Elm St. in Alvord from 10-11 a.m. From there, participants will trek to the library for book checkouts and goodie bags.

FUNERALS – Service for Rollins Bilby, 83, of Lake Bridgeport is pending at Hawkins Funeral Home in Bridgeport.

FUNERAL for Eddie Cordero, 80, of Bridgeport is 10 a.m. Friday at The Father’s House in Decatur with burial at Oaklawn Cemetery. Family visitation is 6-8 p.m. Thursday at Hawkins-Bridgeport.

MEMORIAL service for Brian Charles Webb, 31, of Bridgeport is 5 p.m. Saturday at Hawkins Chapel in Bridgeport.

PRIVATE memorial for Yvonne Crownover, 56, of Decatur will be at a later date. Hawkins Funeral Home in Boyd is handling arrangements.

Print This Page Print This Page

Posted in Update0 Comments

County issues 90-day burn ban


Wise County commissioners Tuesday approved a full, 90-day burn ban, effective immediately.
The action was taken at the recommendation of the county fire marshal’s office.
All outdoor burning is prohibited. Violating the ban is a Class C misdemeanor and punishable by a fine up to $500.
Sheriff Lane Akin said his officers will have a zero tolerance policy when investigating burn ban violations.
The previous 90-day ban was effective only on Red Flag days or high fire danger days as designated by the National Weather Service.
“A lot of times that works, but we just need a flat out ban,” said County Judge J.D. Clark. “Despite what some people would like to say and promote, our burn ban, when it says no spark or flame outdoors, includes fireworks. And that will stand up in court I’m sure, if it’s challenged.”
Under the new burn ban, there are specific rules for outdoor cooking and welding. Go to www.co.wise.tx.us and click on the Burn Ban link at the top of the page for those guidelines.
“We urge all residents of Wise County to help us during this time,” Fire Marshal Jeff Doughty said in a press release. “For our residents in rural areas, we strongly suggest you make sure to keep an area of about 30 feet mowed around your home and out buildings to prevent a fire from reaching your structures. We encourage all Wise County residents to be safe.”

Print This Page Print This Page

Posted in Breaking News, Update1 Comment

Wreck sends 3 to hospital


A rollover wreck on Texas 114 in Rhome sent three people to the hospital Tuesday afternoon.

Rhome police and fire rescue responded to a call around 2 p.m. that a Chevrolet pickup had overturned. Rhome officer Bryan Pickler said the truck hydroplaned and flipped after taking the on-ramp to 114 too fast.

The driver and two passengers were transported to Wise Health System with non-life threatening injuries.

Print This Page Print This Page

Posted in Breaking News, Update0 Comments

Update for Tuesday, July 10, 2018


MOVE OVER OR SLOW DOWN – The Texas Department of Public Safety will be enhancing enforcement efforts in Wise County Wednesday. DPS will focus specifically on violations of the state’s move over/slow down law. The law, originally passed in 2003, requires motorists to move over or slow down when certain vehicles – including police, fire, EMS, Texas Department of Transportation vehicles and tow trucks – are stopped on the side of the road with emergency lights activated. The law states the driver must vacate the lane closest to the applicable vehicles stopped on the side of the road (if the road has multiple lanes traveling in the same direction), or slow down 20 mph below the speed limit.

50/50 CHANCE OF RAIN – Today’s weather forecast includes a 50 percent chance of rain, mainly after 10 a.m. Otherwise it is expected to be mostly cloudy with a high of 90 degrees.

DAYCARE DECISION DELAYED – The Decatur City Council decided to table action on a specific use permit request for a daycare in the South Martin Branch neighborhood at yesterday’s meeting due to the absence of a council member. Since a super-majority vote of the council is required for the SUP’s approval, Mayor Martin Woodruff suggested the council table the item until the full council is available to vote on the issue.

PARADISE HISTORICAL SOCIETY – The Paradise Historical Society meets 7 tonight at the Paradise Museum, 216 Main St. Bridgeport Mayor Randy Singleton will be the guest speaker. He will present the history of the Bridgeport coal mines and of his father’s (Ray Singleton) WWII experiences as a member of the Lost Battalion. The presentation will be followed by a bi-monthly business meeting of the society. The public is welcome.

ALZHEIMER’S SUPPORT GROUP – The Wise Alzheimer’s Group meets 7 p.m. today in the boardroom at the Wise Health System west campus in Decatur. Call Richard, 940-255-0244.

COLOR RUN – Wise County 4-H’s Run for the Clovers Color Run is Saturday at McCarroll Middle School. The event will include a 5K and 1-mile family fun run, both with multiple color stations promising a rainbow-dipped finish. The 5K starts at 7:30 a.m., and the 1-mile at 8. Proceeds benefit local charities. Sign up at wcmess.com/runforclovers. Early registration is $10 for kids and $15 for adults. Prices go up on the day of the event. Call 940-627-3341.

FRIDAY NIGHT MARKET – Wise County Market Days teamed up with the city of Bridgeport, Economic Development Corp. and Main Street for a Friday night event. It kicks off this week at the corner of 12th and Halsell Streets, open 5-9 p.m. It’s planned to be open every Friday, as long as produce is available. The market will feature fresh produce, free range eggs, local raised beef and lamb, local honey, jelly and jams, plus baked goods and pickles.

FUNERALS – Service for Linda Riederer, 58, of Justin is pending at Hawkins Funeral Home in Decatur.

MEMORIAL service for Kristen Burrows, 36, of Chico is 1 p.m. today at County Line Cowboy Church in Sunset. Hawkins Funeral Home in Bridgeport is handling arrangements.

FUNERAL for Eddie Cordero, 80, of Bridgeport is 10 a.m. Friday at The Father’s House in Decatur with burial at Oaklawn Cemetery. Family visitation is 6-8 p.m. Thursday at Hawkins-Bridgeport.

MEMORIAL service for Brian Charles Webb, 31, of Bridgeport is 5 p.m. Saturday at Hawkins Chapel in Bridgeport.

SERVICE for Yvonne Crownover, 56, of Decatur is pending at Hawkins Funeral Home in Boyd.

FUNERAL for Carolyn Dianne Swartling, 72, of Aurora is 11 a.m. today in the chapel at Jones Family Funeral Home-Decatur with burial at Aurora Cemetery. Family visitation will be one hour prior to the service in the chapel.

Print This Page Print This Page

Posted in Update0 Comments

Update for Monday, July 9, 2018


FIREWORKS ARGUMENT LEADS TO SHOOTING DEATH – An elderly Lake Bridgeport man was shot and killed Saturday night after getting into an argument over fireworks, Wise County Sheriff Lane Akin said. Akin said the Wise County Sheriff’s Office received a call about 10:25 p.m. regarding a shooting incident near Church Street. Akin said the man, identified as 80-year-old Edward Cordero, came outside because a large group of people were igniting fireworks. The conversation soon turned argumentative, and Cordero told the group he was going to get his gun. A 33-year-old in the group also retrieved a firearm. According to a press release from the Sheriff’s Office, Cordero reportedly fired the first shot. The 33-year-old then returned fire and struck Cordero in the head. AirEvac was requested, and Cordero was flown to JPS in Fort Worth. He was pronounced dead upon arrival. Sheriff’s Office deputies, criminal investigators and crime scene investigators remained on scene until 3 a.m. Sunday morning. No charges have been filed, but Akin said the Sheriff’s Office will be conferring with the District Attorney and the case may be referred to the grand jury. He added charges may be filed in the near future. Funeral for Cordero is pending at Hawkins Funeral Home in Bridgeport.

STOLEN VEHICLE CHASE – A chase involving two stolen vehicles ended in Fort Worth around 6:30 a.m. Monday morning, according to Wise County Sheriff Lane Akin. The Wise County Sheriff’s Office received a call at 5:43 a.m. that a car had wrecked on U.S. 81/287 north of Alvord. Akin said that vehicle was stolen out of Bowie. The driver fled the vehicle, stole an Atmos Energy truck and continued south on U.S. 81/287, striking a tractor-trailer north of Farm Road 407. An officer with the Rhome Police Department began pursuing the truck as it crossed the Denton and Tarrant County lines. The truck merged onto south Interstate 35 before finally wrecking out at Pharr Street in Fort Worth – more than 60 miles from where the chase began. Akin said the driver appeared to be under the influence of drugs and was transported to a local hospital. Officers from Rhome and Fort Worth, as well as Department of Public Safety troopers and Sheriff’s deputies responded to the chase.

CHANCE OF RAIN – Today’s forecast includes a 40 percent chance of showers and thunderstorms this afternoon with a high of 91 degrees.

LET’S MAKE MUSIC – The Alvord Public Library’s Summer Reading Program for Wednesday will include a live flute performance, demonstration of some wind instruments, and making kazoos. All programs are held at Alvord City Hall, 205 W. Elm St. in Alvord from 10-11 a.m. From there, participants will trek to the library for book checkouts and goodie bags.

DIABETES CLASSES – Total Diabetes Care at Wise Health System will hold diabetes education classes in Alvord today. The beginner class will be offered at 3 p.m., and the advanced class will be offered at 4 p.m. Both classes will be held at the First Baptist Church. The classes are intended to help those with diabetes better understand and manage the disease. Classes are free and will be taught by Dick Gilley RN, CCRN, CDE. No RSVP required. Call Gilley at 940-626-1890.

DECATUR CITY COUNCIL – The Decatur City Council tonight will take action on a specific use permit to allow a daycare at the entrance to the South Martin Branch neighborhood. A three-fourths vote of the city council will be necessary for approval due to local property owner opposition. In other business, the council will hold a public hearing to receive comments on the 2017 annual drinking water quality report and hold a first reading on a number of different items related to downtown apartments, birthing centers and bingo halls.

COMMUNITY COALITION MEETING – The Wise County Community Coalition meets at noon today at Pizza Hut in Decatur. Liz Hubbard with Feeding Wise Kids will be guest speaker.

BEST OF SPORTS – The weekend Wise County Messenger on newsstands now features our annual Best of Sports special section featuring a number of year-end awards for athletes, teams and coaches along with memorable photos from the 2017-2018 school year.

FUNERALS – Service for Carolyn Dianne Swartling, 72, of Aurora is 11 a.m. Tuesday in the chapel at Jones Family Funeral Home-Decatur with burial at Aurora Cemetery. Family visitation is one hour prior to the service in the chapel.

FUNERAL for Ross Redding, 71, of Chico is 10 a.m. today at St. John the Baptizer Catholic Church in Bridgeport with burial at Thomas Cemetery. Jones Family Funeral Home-Bridgeport is handling arrangements.

SERVICE for Linda Riederer, 58, of Justin is pending at Hawkins Funeral Home in Decatur.

MEMORIAL for Eulane Vansickle, 81, of Decatur will be held at a later date. Hawkins-Decatur is handling arrangements.

SERVICE for Eddie Cordero, 80, of Bridgeport is pending at Hawkins Funeral Home in Bridgeport.

MEMORIAL service for Brian Charles Webb, 31, of Bridgeport is pending at Hawkins-Bridgeport.

MEMORIAL service for Kristen Burrows, 36, of Chico is 1 p.m. Tuesday at County Line Cowboy Church in Sunset. Hawkins-Bridgeport is handling arrangements.

FUNERAL for Leonard Ratliff, 91, of Boyd is 10:30 a.m. today at First United Methodist Church in Boyd with interment to follow at Boyd Cemetery. Hawkins Funeral Home in Boyd is handling arrangements.

Print This Page Print This Page

Posted in Update0 Comments

Elderly Lake Bridgeport man shot and killed over fireworks


Update: 4:30 p.m. Sunday

An elderly Lake Bridgeport man was shot and killed Saturday night after getting into an argument over fireworks, Wise County Sheriff Lane Akin confirmed.

Akin said the Wise County Sheriff’s Office received a call about 10:25 p.m. regarding a shooting incident near Church Street.

Akin said the man, identified as 80-year-old Edward Cordero, came outside because a large group of people were igniting fireworks. The conversation soon turned argumentative, and Cordero told the group he was going to get his gun. A 33-year-old in the group also retrieved a firearm.

According to a press release from the Sheriff’s Office, Cordero reportedly fired the first shot. The 33-year-old then returned fire and struck Cordero in the head.

AirEvac was requested, and Cordero was flown to JPS in Fort Worth. He was pronounced dead upon arrival.

Sheriff’s Office deputies, criminal investigators and crime scene investigators remained on scene until 3 a.m. Sunday morning. No charges have been filed, but Akin said the Sheriff’s Office will be conferring with the District Attorney and the case may be referred to the grand jury.

He added charges may be filed in the near future.

Akin confirmed the City of Lake Bridgeport banned fireworks.

Print This Page Print This Page

Posted in Breaking News, News, Update1 Comment

Update for Friday, July 6, 2018


NO MORE WARNINGS – With a burn ban still in place due to an elevated fire risk, Wise County Sheriff Lane Akin says his department is no longer issuing warnings for violations. Between June 29 and 7 a.m. Thursday morning, Wise County fire departments responded to 74 calls for fires and fought 32 fires. The county received 259 fireworks violations calls. On the evening of July 4th, the Wise County Sheriff’s Office dispatch received 150 calls about fireworks. The office had 212 total calls on Wednesday. The volume of calls overwhelmed the department’s 15 phone lines and the four dispatchers, according to Akin. The 911 system remained up and running. Due to the number of calls, Akin advised his patrol commanders Thursday to start writing citations for any burn ban violations, including fireworks. “It was my position to warn people and seek compliance,” Akin said. “But the warnings are over.” The fine for a violation of the burn ban is up to $500. A fire that damages property belonging to another property owner is also punishable by a $500 fine and court ordered restitution. Outdoor burning that results in death, injury, or damages a building belonging to another may result in two years in state jail, a fine up to $10,000 and court ordered restitution. There may also be additional criminal and civil liability.

CHANCE OF RAIN/CHANCE OF FIRES – The National Weather Service forecast includes a 30 percent chance of rain today and a 20 percent chance of rain every day through the early part of next week. For areas that do not receive rain, the threat of grass fires remains high. Today’s high is expected to be 94 degrees with heat index values around 99.

BAKE SALE – Bridgeport FFA will hold a bake sale 9 a.m.-6 p.m. today at First Financial Bank in Bridgeport. It is a fundraiser for the group to attend the state convention.

WISHLIST WEEKEND – This weekend is Wishlist Weekend at the International Exotic Animal Sanctuary in Boyd. Bring one item on the sanctuary’s wishlist and tour the facility for free. Tours are 11 a.m. Friday, 11 a.m. and 3 p.m. Saturday and 11 a.m. Sunday. Children must be at least 7 years old to participate in the tour. Wishlist items include water hoses, cleaning supplies, fresh produce, unsalted peanuts, office supplies, toilet paper and maintenance supplies. Visit bigcat.org.

SEEKING CALENDAR SUBMISSIONS – The Wise County Historical Society will produce another calendar for 2019. The theme for next year’s calendar is Wildflowers of Wise County. The public is invited to contribute photos of wildflowers grown in Wise County. Photos should include the name of the flowers and the location (town or road). Submit them by email to eno111@embarqmail.com before Aug. 31.

BBQ FUNDRAISER – The Sand Flat Fire Department is holding its annual barbecue fundraiser 11 a.m.-1 p.m. Saturday at its station, 745 County Road 1744. Silent and live auctions will be held along with two large ticket raffles.

FEEDING WISE KIDS – The Feeding Wise Kids summer feeding program continues its Friday distribution at the following locations and times: (Boyd) First United Methodist Church 10:30-11 a.m.; (Bridgeport) Bridgeport Elementary School parking lot 10:30-11:00 a.m., Cates Street Baptist Church 10:30-11 a.m., First Baptist Church 10:30-noon, First United Methodist Church 10:30-11 a.m., Presbyterian Church 10:30-11 a.m.; (Slidell) Slidell High School 8 a.m.-3 p.m. Other locations and times are as follows: Chico First United Methodist Church 9:30 a.m.-1:30 p.m. on Wednesdays, Chisholm Trail Middle School and Seven Hills Elementary in Rhome on Thursdays.

FUNERALS – Services for Eulane Vansickle, 81, of Decatur and Linda Riederer, 58, of Justin are pending at Hawkins Funeral Home in Decatur.

FUNERAL for Sam Renshaw, 95, of Decatur is 10 a.m. today at First United Methodist Church in Decatur with burial at Oaklawn Cemetery. Hawkins-Decatur is handling arrangements.

MEMORIAL graveside for Wanda Hudson, 81, of Bridgeport is 2 p.m. Sunday at Sweetwater Cemetery. Hawkins-Decatur is handling arrangements.

MEMORIAL service for Kristen Burrows, 36, of Chico is 1 p.m. Tuesday at County Line Cowboy Church in Sunset. Hawkins Funeral Home in Bridgeport is handling arrangements.

MEMORIAL service for Norma Throckmorton, 75, of Boyd is 10:30 a.m. Saturday at St. John The Baptizer Catholic Church in Bridgeport. Hawkins-Bridgeport is handling arrangements.

MEMORIAL service for William Allen “Bill” Parker Jr., 66, of Chico is 11 a.m. today at Morris Memorial Methodist Church in Chico. Hawkins-Bridgeport is handling arrangements.

SERVICE for Eula Mae Green, 98, formerly of Bridgeport is 10:30 a.m. today at Cates Street Church of Christ in Bridgeport with burial at Thomas Cemetery. Jones Family Funeral Home in Bridgeport is handling arrangements.

SERVICE for Ross H. Redding, 71, of Chico is pending at Jones-Bridgeport.

GRAVESIDE service Hattie Brooks Fulton, 85, of Florence, formerly of Wise County, is 11 a.m. Saturday at Greenwood Cemetery in Decatur.

Print This Page Print This Page

Posted in Update0 Comments