Jacksboro Gazette-News (Jacksboro, Tex.), Vol. 133, No. 14, Ed. 1 Tuesday, September 11, 2012 Page: 4 of 10
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Page 4 • Jacksboro Gazette-News_WWW.IACKSBORONEWSPAPERS.COM_Tuesday, September 11, 2012
The fly on the
About a month ago, I took on the chal-
lenge of a new role. I had been working for
AT&T for about 14 months and was ready
for a change. Retail is not a “family oriented”
business, and I had become pretty dissatisfied
My husband, Lane, got a Jacksboro Gazette
-News one evening on his way home and
found an ad looking for a staff writer for the
paper. With his encouragement, I showed up
one Monday morning with a resume in hand.
I had written a column for the paper some
years ago, called Cundiff Ala Carte.
I’m not sure if I was hoping they would re-
member me or forget me, but the editor, Pam
Hudson, said she remembered the column.
Maybe there just wasn’t anyone else applying
for the job or it was “Divine intervention,”
but something happened. I was called for an
interview, and got the job.
My first day was Aug. 6. Oddly, the first
thing that I helped cover was the water main
break on Belknap. So, I have been on the job
for roughly a month and have to say, it has
been the most exciting month I think I have
had in a very long time. I have met some of
the finest people around and seen faces that
I have known for ages, and have been wel-
comed into many “circles.” What have I
learned in just a month? Let me share.
I have learned that even when people in our
county or our town do not agree on some-
thing, they handle it with dignity. I have been
to many meetings in which discussions can
get “spirited,” but then the participants are
still able to greet each other in the street. I
came to this position during one of the most
difficult times of the year, budget time for
the city and the county. As if this isn’t tough
I mean, how do you figure out where the
taxpayers money should go? How do you
make everyone happy? You really can’t. And
there have been decisions that have made me
stop and scratch my head. Comments said
that made me want to thump someone on the
ear. I have had to put personal opinion aside
in order to write stories about what is happen-
ing in this wonderful county. I have learned
(again) that when someone in the county is in
need, people will rally for them.
I have seen the results of terrible accidents,
and fires and know that we are protected by
the finest group of men and women around.
Our sheriff’s department, many fire depart-
ments, police departments, DPS, EMTs, and
justice system is watching over me. And you.
I have no idea what they are making, or what
the funding is...it is not enough. I have heard
negative comments here and there about
them, and I offer this to people that think
these men and women don’t do enough...go
There are volunteer fire departments in
Jacksboro, Bryson, Perrin, Cundiff, East Jack
County, Antelope, Jermyn, and Newport. (If I
left anyone out, please forgive me.) These de-
partments run on funds gathered by donations
and they will use every bit of man-power they
See SANDI, Page 8
Fine hair is not a
One week ago, my hair was perfect. It
fluffy, curly, and shiny. I looked cute ...
Well, let’s just say I looked cuter than I did
this morning when I woke up with hair that
wouldn’t do anything. It must have grown
three inches overnight. It hung down in
straight clumps which had a tendency to twist
at the bottom, forcing the neighboring hairs to
rebel. The only curls were behind my ears and
they curled out like an overworked rooster.
In less than seven days, I’ve seen my perfect
hair-do collapse. I’m not sure if this is normal
for everyone, but for me, it is. Sometimes it
happens overnight. My hair is “fine.” Fine is
not defined as good in this instance. It means
that the hairs are thin, supporting neither
themselves nor their neighbors and require a
lot of what the industry calls “product” if it
gets longer than two inches.
When the humidity is between pleasant and
peachy-keen, my hair behaves. The moisture
in the air puts a bit of a curve to it, and it can
even look attractive ... front and back. When
the weather gets dry and moves into the dust-
storm realm, my hair flies around, even when
there is no wind. Balloons, carpeted hallways
three rooms away, and latex Band-A ids can
pull it to attention. Just a little moisture in the
air, and the science experiment calms down.
Last night, I brushed my teeth, fluffed my
perfect hair, and went to bed. This morning,
thanks to Hurricane Isaac moving through Il-
linois, my hairs joined forces and fell below
my earlobes. It was as if each hair grabbed
onto the next hair and pulled.
Washing sometimes helps. Hair gel some-
times helps. This morning, I tried both. Noth-
ing helped. It was time to get a haircut. Some
people have standing appointments at their
hairdressers. Every three to six weeks, they
go in and get a haircut. I never know. If
had asked me last week to make an appc
ment for a haircut, I’d have said I’d need one
in two weeks. After all, I looked a lot like
Marilyn Monroe ... from the roots up. Little
did I know that overnight, I’d look like Mari-
lyn Mans on, but I did this morning.
So, I dropped by my hairdresser’s this af-
ternoon. I’m not sure if they make appoint-
ments there. They probably do, but I’ve never
asked. I’m always desperate when I come in,
and they treat me with understanding ... and
sharp scissors. I like both of the ladies in the
shop, and I’m willing to wait my turn. By the
time I go in, I usually NEED a haircut, and I
can’t afford to be seen on the streets in that
condition. I’ll wait hours. I bring a good long
book. I’ve even done a little sweeping up just
to assuage my guilt for just dropping in.
For a few days, I won’t look good. My hair
is a little too short. Full-figured girls really
shouldn’t wear their hair so short, but I’m try-
ing to get my money’s worth. I’d like to go in
and say, “Just cut it so it will look like it did
three days ago,” but that won’t work. I’d have
to go in every day.
If I win the lottery, I’m going to hire a full-
time hair-cutter ... Boy will she have her
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Herron, a Civil
War teen soldier
Frank Herron had two close brushes with
death during the Civil War.
Harmon enlisted along with his two brothers
in the Confederate Army when he was only
Years later Herron would become a promi-
nent citizen in Graham after oil was discov-
ered on his farm. He told his friends about his
narrow escapes from death, and one tale was
printed in The Graham Leader.
One friend added a war story to Herron’s
obituary in the June 15, 1922, edition.
While serving in the 3rd Tennessee Infantry,
Harmon and fellow soldiers were ordered to
march from Lt. Hudson, La., to Vicksburg,
Miss. Engaging in what be called the Battle
of Raymond, Herron’s forces were ordered
to scout on the advance of Gen. Ulysses S.
Grant’s forces on May 11.1863.
They were ordered first to relieve pickets
posted the night before, and they fulfilled
their assignment with difficulty. The young
soldiers had eaten nothing, their feet were
blistered and they dreaded the certain loss of
some of their comrades.
But as they had passed a Southern mansion,
some beautiful girls waved the “Bonnie Blue’
flag and the soldiers responded with a loud
Rebel yell. That brief encounter had boosted
their spirits before they took their places on
the picket line.
Their head officer roused their spirits be-
fore he ordered them to attack their Union
enemies. Herron was wounded in the second
charge. Although he was bleeding and felt
he might die, his thoughts were on his loved
ones so far away.
By Gay Schlittler
The teenage soldier was captured and sent
to a field hospital in a Southern plantation.
There the Union surgeon dressed his wound.
But Herron’s wound was not redressed for six
days and began to fester.
By the time he was moved to Raymund, he
was in unbearable pain. But a young South-
ern girl noticed him and began to cry at the
sight of his wound, which was crawling with
maggots. She cleaned the wound and thereaf-
ter visited Herron everyday.
A short time before the Battle of Chickam-
auga, Herron returned to his command and
applied for a discharge. He would face yet
another escape from death (which will be fea-
tured in next week’s column).
But he never forgot that Southern girl. Later
in life Herron wrote to the postmaster at Ray-
mund and asked about the girl, who he knew
as Myra McDonald. The postman gave him
her married name and said she lived in Jack-
Herron wrote her a letter, and they contin-
ued to exchange letters until he died. On one
of the most memorable days of his life, one
of her daughters visited him in Texas. Herron
was overcome with emotion to see her beau-
tiful daughter. He remembered that amid the
nightmarish field hospital how the inexperi-
enced volunteer had given equally kind treat-
ment to Confederate and Union soldiers.
Herron said,, “I will never forget the kind-
ness and tender care of Mrs. Myra Dennis to
a wounded soldier boy of 15.”
Rachel, Rachel, I
been thinking ...
Across the centuries, the name “Rachel” has
fared well among favored first names. It cur-
rently ranks #79 among the top 4,200 most
popular in the U.S., even though its literal
meaning is “female sheep.” It dates back to
the saintly Old Testament figure.
Nowadays, individuals so named risk being
besmirched in cataclysmic proportions. “Ra-
chel” could drop out of the top 4,200, per-
haps even plummet into “worst of the worst”
A robo-caller, “Rachel from Card Member
Services,” begins her canned, spam-inspired
spiel, with assurance that I’m in no trouble
with my credit card. If I will but divulge cred-
it card and Social Security numbers—ones I’d
hesitate to share with next of kin—she can
lower my credit card interest rate forthwith!...
When she calls—as she does multiple times
weekly to all of our numbers—my teeth grind,
heart rate jumps and unchristian thoughts
nudge me toward loss of religion. Oh, I can
press one for this and two for that—theoreti-
cally ending forevermore the unwanted calls
by entering my phone number after the beep
or talking to a LIVE person!
I’ve tried both without success. One can’t
enter numbers after the beep if it never comes,
or talk to a LIVE person when his/her voice
mail box is full. I weep with the Feds who
strive to dismiss Rachel and her minions; if
they’re ever located, “dismemberment” might
be a more popular option.
In a recent dream, my last name was “Pi-
late.” It was mine to name an infant son, and
dubbing him “Pontius” seemed preferable to
naming a girl “Rachel.”...
Speaking of names, my friend Jim Bob’s
moniker officially is “James Robert.” But,
he’s been “Jim Bob” since before getting per-
He, like the rest of us, is trying to cope in a
By Don Newbury
world of fears—both real and imagined. He’s
got double locks, a home security system to
discourage burglars and a fenced yard.
at his San Angelo home warns,
A yard sign £
Truth to tell, the guard dog is “Miss Lillie,”
a pampered 12-year-old Red Heeler/Poodle
cross. She isn’t up for much guard duty. She’s
diabetic— two insulin shots daily— has lost
teeth and is slowed by arthritis. She’s nearly
blind and has minimal hearing.
Her exercise is limited to accessing her food
and water bowls and traipsing outside to the
Mostly, she sleeps in a comfy bed on Jim
Bob’s side of the master king....
A while back, Jim Bob was awakened at 3
in the morning by a human voice. He nudged
wife Jan, who also heard the sound.
Miss Lillie heard it, too, and crawled under
the bed as far as she could burrow.
Jim Bob did what a man has to do. He
grabbed his 9-MM firearm (fully licensed,
as opposed to partially licensed), and tip-
toed stealthily toward the kitchen. Miss Lillie
crept with him, some 15 feet behind....
As he moved slowly down the hall, Jim Bob
heard the voice grow louder. He lurched into
the kitchen, ready to deal with whoever was
Drat it all; no one was there.
Aha, my friend was bom at night, but not
last night. The voice was coming from the ad-
jacent hall way....
Firearm brandished, he entered boldly,
See IDLE, Page 6
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Hudson, Pam. Jacksboro Gazette-News (Jacksboro, Tex.), Vol. 133, No. 14, Ed. 1 Tuesday, September 11, 2012, newspaper, September 11, 2012; Jacksboro, Texas. (texashistory.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metapth707885/m1/4/: accessed October 22, 2018), University of North Texas Libraries, The Portal to Texas History, texashistory.unt.edu; crediting Gladys Johnson Ritchie Library.