Cherokeean/Herald (Rusk, Tex.), Vol. 141, No. 9, Ed. 1 Thursday, April 6, 1989 Page: 1 of 20
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Texas State Railroad
AflLlNGrON, TX 76006
Established as the Cherokee Sentinel — Texas' Oldest, Continuously Published Weekly Newspaper
Vol. 141, No. 9-16 Pages
Thursday, April 6, 1989
Rusk, Texas 75785 25 cents
ANRA charges pollution of Mud Creek
The Angelina and Neches River
Authority has announced that it has
initiated an investigation of the
water pollution caused by Poly-
Cycle Industries, Inc. at Tecula,
northeast of Jacksonville, to
determine the effect of Poly-Cycle
operations on existing and future
water supplies in East Texas, in-
cluding Lake Eastex.
Poly-Cycle Industries at Tecula
operates as a commercial recycler
of spent lead acid batteries and
broken plastic and rubber battery
Texas Water Commission sample
analyses show that hazardous
waste is being managed at the
Tecula site, however, Poly-Cycle
does not have authorization from
the Texas Water Commission to
operate a hazardous waste facility
at the Tecula site.
In the past, Poly-Cycle has been
operated not only in violation of the
Texas Solid Waste Disposal Act as
well as the rules of the Texas Water
Commission, but also without any
apparent regard to sound waste
management practices, according
to the ANRA. As a result, con-
tinuing discharges of hazardous
wastes onto the soil and into the
waters of the Mud Creek Watershed
Steve Lilly of Nacogdoches,
President of the Authority, said
"we have a very serious threat not
only to the future water supply in
East Texas, but also an immediate
"This situation is extremely
serious" said Lilly. "I'm asking the
Texas Water Commission to take
immediate action to close down this
operation, assess the amount of
contamination to the surrounding
environment and cause immediate
clean-up procedures to safeguard
the water supply and health not
only of the Tecula Community, but
the entire East Texas Region."
"These streams empty into Mud
See*POLLUTION, P. 16
Alto tomato shipping
shown in photograph
Alto during tomato shipping season
Storm causes $ 1-2 million damage
Cherokee County residents are
busy repairing the damages suf-
fered during the thunderstorms
that plagued the area Tuesday,
March 25. Rainfall of ten to twelve
inches was reported during the
Many roads have been closed and
scheduled runs cancelled for Texas
State Railroad, Rusk depot.
Jack White, Cherokee County
Emergency Management Coor-
dinator, says the county is joining
with Rusk and Gregg counties in
making application for federal
disaster aid funds. County com-
with Marie Whitehead
Many of us will remember the
weather of March 28-29 for as long
as we live. The river-like appearan-
ce of some streets, roads and
highways is forever burned into
We can't find anyone who recalls
so much rain falling in such a short
span of time. There were varying
reports of the amount, ranging
from 10 to 12 inches. We usually
hear about this kind of flooding
somewhere else! But this time it
was Cherokee County and several
other East Texas counties.
The long range clean-up will be
just that. Long range. Damaged
for Alto teen
Mystie Isaacs, fourteen year
old daughter of Tommy and
Marianne Selman, Alto,
remains in Baylor Intensive
Care Unit, Dallas, waiting a
A fund has been set up at
Continental State Bank to those
wishing to help defray expen-
Mystie is in the eighth grade
at Alto Junior High School and
a member of the Hilltop Bap-
tist Church, Alto.
All area churches are in-
volved in the fund drive for
Mystie and a blood drive will
be organized in the near future.
roads, bridges and streetways
aren't repaired overnight. But the
emergency assistance given by so
many is worthy of all persons'
praise and commendation. Depen-
ding on where you were and where
you stayed during the turbulence,
you may have missed some of the
We experienced road closures,
bridges washed out, dams on ponds
and lakes broke, and the main
building of Rusk State Hospital was
innundated in the basement level.
Jack White, Cherokee County's
Emergency Coordinator, was out
most of Wednesday night but up
next day, smiling with gratitude for
the services performed by volun-
teers at RSH.
Among the many units of persons
who performed above and beyond
the call of duty were all highway
department personnel, law enfor-
cement agencies, Cherokee Coun-
ty's /our commissioners-Bob
Gregg, Alton Hicks, F. E. Hassell
and Billy McCutcheon-and their
personnel who immediately come
to mind. Volunteer Firemen were
busy around the clock fielding
questions with answers and respon-
ding to distress calls, also.
It was stressful...and distressful,
folks! Not only for we humans, but
animals, too. Not a great time for
calves to be born, but many were. A
bad, very bad time for dairymen
who had trouble keeping their
herd's milk moving. The tank
trucks found roads Impassable, as
you might guess.
Wednesday afternoon, well
See • ROUNDABOUT, P. 18
missioners estimate that between
$1-2 million in damage was done to
county roads. Bob Gregg, Precinct
1, says he has $650,000 worth of
damage; Alton Hicks, Precinct 2,
reports $572,000 in damage; F. E.
Hassell, Precinct 3, estimates
$372,000; and Billy McCutcheon,
Precinct 4, reports $500,000 in
White says "We aren't promising
that we can get help, but by com-
bining our efforts with the other two
counties, we should qualify."
Assistance for the grant ap-
plication is being coordinated by
State Senator Bill Haley's office.
Members of the Rusk Volunteer
Fire Department pumped 150,000
gallons of water and a 10-inch drain
emptied much more of water
collected in the basement of Rusk
State Hospital. Personnel worked at
the site until around 3:30 a.m. Wed-
The first storm hit around 4 p.m.
Tuesday and the second system
came in between 7:30 and 8 p.m.
White said he received a call from
the National Weather Service that a
third storm was heading this way.
However, it didn't hit and the coun-
ty only experienced heavy rains.
Electric power went out at 4:05
p.m. Tuesday. Power was restored
to Rusk in about seven minutes, but
was off some 30 minutes in the Alto
area. George Dodd, service
manager at Rusk SESCO, said a
power line between Rusk and Alto
was knocked out in the storm,
causing the power failure. Isolated
cases in the area were reported
throughout the storm.
Galaxy Cablevision TV system
was out most of the night.
White said that Rick Watson,
public information officer for the
county's emergency management
program, got the word out of the
seriousness of the storm and road-
ways were cleared within 45
minutes. Commissioners and their
crews worked into the night.
Sheriff's deputies located damaged
roads and reported information to
work crews for road closings.
Dean Perkins of the Texas High-
way Department reported that
Boxes Creek bridge on Highway 294
was washed out at the east end; a
culvert was out on Loop 142 at the
old store at Ponta; Boxes Creek
bridge on 1857 was washed out at
Sardis; damages were reported to
347 at Dialville; water was over the
pavement and pavement damaged
on 1248 ; 839 Lake Striker road was
washed out at New Salem; 1662
river bridge was flooded; 2274 Pine
Hill to Ponta at Simpson Creek was
See "STORM, P. 16
Cherokee County Historical
Commission's archive of
photographs is an historic portfolio,
typical of the types of historic
photographs needed for the
Commission's archive of
photographs. The scene is of Alto
during the tomato shipping season,
said Grady Singletary of Alto,
project director for historic photo
Historic photographs of schools,
class groups, buildings, homes,
early industries, and persons im-
portant in the county's past will be
copied in the Jacksonville Public
Library auditorium from 9 a.m. un-
til 5 p.m. April 8. Prints will be
made for the Historical Com-
mission's expanding archive,
The photographs must be 50 or
more years old and will be copied
free of cost to the owners-lenders.
The photographs will be copied
while the owners-lenders wait and
will be returned to them im-
mediately. Information on the old
photos will be taken by Commission
members to be filed with the prints.
The old photograph of the old
"cotton yard" in Alto was taken in
1924 during the tomato shipping
season. The building in the
background is the old First
Methodist Church, which was
replaced with the present A. Frank
Smith United Methodist Church
plant several years ago. The far-
mers are waiting to sell their
tomatoes to shippers who operated
packing-shipping sheds each year.
Note the vintage of the automobiles
and trucks and some horse or mule-
drawn wagons. White-shirted man
sitting in the large automobile on
the left is Henry Berryman,
:yV> a|. f*.
RUSHING WATER FLOWS beneath a now unusuable bridge in
the Rusk area. This road was one of many that were closed
following last week's flooding in Cherokee County, -staff photo
businessman in Alto many years.
This photo came from the collection
of Mrs. R. M. Hoover of Rusk.
The Commission has almost 500
copies of historic photographs
provided by people through the
county. The Commission has
authorized the preparation of
several exhibits of the old
photographs in categories, which
will be made available to public
school history teachers next fall for
use in their classroom teaching,
Singeltary said. The exhibits will be
available without cost to the school
The Commission's archive of
historic photographs and infor-
mation on them is the only one in
Cherokee County and is one of the
few in Texas outside metropolitan
See MAYDELLE ISD story, p.3.
Lions Club Baseball
The Rusk Lions Club has begun
distributing registration forms to
young people for the Rusk Youth
Baseball and the Girls Softball
programs. Forms are available at
Rusk Elementary School and Rusk
Junior High School.
These forms are to be returned
with $25 at a place to be announced
later on April 15, 22 , 29 and May 1.
Absolute deadline for turning in
registration forms and money is
The season will begin on May 15
and will continue for some 60 days.
Alto Youth Baseball
Alto Youth Baseball League will
meet at 7 p.m. Thursday, April 6 at
the Southwestern Building for team
The Cherokee Shrine Club is
having a bean dinner Friday, April
7 at the Shrine Hall next to the Post
Office in Rusk.
Lunch will be served beginning at
11 a.m. The all-you-can-eat dinner
is $C and members urge citizens to
Wells Chamber of Commerce will
meet at 7 p.m. Thursday for its
regular meeting. President Tillie
Young said that potential members
are welcome to attend and get
acquainted. Meetings are held at
First State Bank, Wells.
Free screening slated
A free glaucoma screening will be
held from 9:30 a.m. until 2 p.m.
Saturday, April 15 at the Lions Club
Building in Alto. The Smith County
Branch of Texas Society to Prevent
Blindness will conduct the
Rusk CC directors
Directors for the Rusk Chamber
of Commerce will meet at 12 noon
Monday, April 10. Meeting place
will be Southern Motor Inn, where a
dutch treat luncheon will be served.
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Cherokeean/Herald (Rusk, Tex.), Vol. 141, No. 9, Ed. 1 Thursday, April 6, 1989, newspaper, April 6, 1989; Rusk, Texas. (texashistory.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metapth151898/m1/1/: accessed May 28, 2017), University of North Texas Libraries, The Portal to Texas History, texashistory.unt.edu; crediting Singletary Memorial Library.