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Around Town

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December 15, 2017 - Kaylin Burleson's senior government and economics classes delivered Christmas presents to students at F.L. Moffett.

Burleson, who named the project, "Mr. Haddox's Big Riders Caring/Sharing for Little Riders" after founder and former teacher Archie Haddox, asked teachers at F.L. Moffett for names of students they thought needed a Christmas wish.

The seniors at CHS received only their age and gender. The volunteers delivered to the FLM campus today.

"I had no trouble filling up the 23 names," Burleson said. "In fact my 2nd period class each took a name after I explained. Others then asked if they could just bring a toy and I said sure, so we took the initial wish list today along with those extras.

"I know had FLM sent more names these high school students would have answered the call to help the little ones, and I have to say watching our students engage with the little ones this morning was a blessing for me - they were so kind, caring, and gentle."

December 13, 2017 - Center Police Departments Ladies Auxiliary is happy to host, and would like to invite everyone to come enjoy Cookies and Cocoa with Santa, to benefit Blue Santa's Toy Drive, on Sunday, December 17th, 2017 2pm – 5pm at the Center Police Department.

There will be a Hot Cocoa bar with all the trimmings, whip cream, marshmallows, cinnamon, and sprinkles, and more along with yummy cookies, and cupcakes to enjoy. Children who get their pictures taken with Santa, will receive a Free printed copy. Blue Santa asks that everyone bring a new unwrapped toy (boys and girls of all ages,) books, or clothes to donate to Blue Santa’s Gift Program. Monetary donations are also welcomed.

Those that bring a toy in, will be entered into the drawing for a FREE 32gb IPAD! Don’t miss your chance to see Santa, and let Blue Santa help you make a child’s Christmas blessed this year!

Joaquin Volunteer Fire Department Wall of Honor

December 13, 2017 - On Saturday, December 9th, the Joaquin Volunteer Fire Department held it's annual Christmas Party at the Joaquin ISD Cafeteria.

After the fire department members and their families enjoyed a steak dinner, Chief Perry Pugh welcomed the guests, which included members of the Joaquin City Council, Joaquin Public Safety Development Corporation Board, Justice of the Peace Precinct 3 Margie Anderson, Precinct 3 Constable Roy Cheatwood, and many others.

Assistant Chief Jeremy Boyett presented a plaque to Patrick Sandifer, who donated his time and skills to paint the department's newly acquired Army truck, which came from the Texas Forest Service on a grant.

Training Officer Stephen Ewing presented service awards. Ewing and Firefighter David Pierce were recognized for perfect attendance at the department's bi-monthly meetings. Chief Perry Pugh was given a certificate for making the most runs of any member for the year. Out of 54 calls for the year, Chief Pugh responded on 43 of them.

Ewing then presented six members with awards for years of service. In addition to a certificate for each firefighter who was recognized, their wives were also recognized. Ewing stated that being a volunteer firefighter is virtually impossible without the support of one's family. Firefighter Jesse Parent, along with his wife, Sarah, were presented with a certificate and a pin for five years of service. Ewing himself, and his wife, Tami, received an award for ten years of service. Assistant Fire Marshall Justin Boyett and his wife Katie received awards for 15 years of service. Assistant Chief Jeremy Boyett and his wife, SueSue, received awards for 25 years. Firefighter Michael Sandifer, and his wife, Rhonda, were not able to attend, but they were recognized for 30 years. Assistant Chief Steve Cockrell was presented with the department's first ever 45 year service award. Ewing stated "Big Steve has been here, literally from the start. This department was formed in 1973, and he was there. It's been a huge part of his life ever since." Steve's wife, Joyce, has been by his side for every one of his 45 years. She was awarded a 45 year pin as well.

Assistant Chief Jeremy Boyett took the floor to present the JVFD's annual Firefighter of the Year Award, which is voted on by the members. The honor went to Firefighter Nat Rodgers, who has been a firefighter for four years. 

Boyett also spoke about the JVFD's Wall of Honor. The Wall was created in 2015, to recognize people who have been influential in the history and growth of the department. The four inaugural honorees were Steve Cockrell, former Fire Marshall Jim Hutto, Former Chief Mike Wood, and Former Chief Elmer Mathews. In 2016, Former Assistant Chief Jim Swindell, Former Assistant Chief Mike Cummings, Sr., and Former Firefighter Buddy Boyett were added to the Wall. This year, Former Driver/ Operator J.G. (Junior) Spurlock and Former Driver/ Operator Kenneth Spurlock were honored. J.G. Spurlock's daughters, Betty McDaniel and Sheila Fisher were presented with a plaque in honor of their father as his picture was added to the Wall. Kenneth Spurlock's daughter, Mary Lawrence, was also presented with a plaque as his picture was added. Both Spurlock brothers had multiple grandchildren and great grandchildren in attendance.

The JVFD would once again like to wish everyone in the 269 community a safe and Merry Christmas.

Assistant Chief Jeremy Boyett presents Firefighter Nat Rodgers with the annual Firefighter of the Year Award. 

Boyett presents Sheila Fisher and Betty McDaniel with a plaque in honor of their father, J.G. (Junior) Spurlock's service to the JVFD. J.G. Spurlock was added to the JVFD Wall of Honor at the Christmas Party. 

Jeremy Boyett presents Mary Lawrence with a plaque honoring her father, Kenneth Spurlock's service to the JVFD. Mr. Spurlock was added to the JVFD Wall of Honor Saturday night. 

Ewing presents Assistant Fire Marshall Justin Boyett with a certificate and a 15 year service pin. 

Ewing presents Assistant Chief Jeremy Boyett with a certificate and a 25 year service pin. 

Assistant Chief Steve Cockrell shows off the plaque he received for 45 years of service. 

Joaquin VFD Training Officer Stephen Ewing presents Firefighter David Pierce with a certificate for Perfect Attendance at fire meetings for 2017.

Training Officer Ewing presents Firefighter Jesse Parent with a certificate and pin thanking him for five years of service. 

Ewing recognizes Fire Chief Perry Pugh for making the most calls in 2017

Laura Briggs, ACNP-BCDecember 12, 2017 - Cline Family Medicine is excited to wish a happy 3-year anniversary to Laura Briggs!

Briggs says, "Three years ago the Lord opened up a door of opportunity when the position at Cline Family Medicine in Center fell into my lap. It has truly been a blessing to be able to serve this community! The relationships I have developed with my co-workers and patients are priceless! I am looking forward to many more years of being a member of the Cline Family Medicine team! "

Dr. Mark Cline would like everyone to know, “In her 3 years at Cline Family Medicine, Laura has distinguished herself by providing compassionate, high quality healthcare for a growing number of Shelby County families.

“She’s a pleasure to have with us and her patients love her!

“We invite you all to come by anytime to say hello and congratulate her.”

Cline Family Medicine was established in Center in December 2012. The clinic serves pediatrics through geriatrics. Open Monday through Friday for all types of physicals, well child exams and immunizations, minor injuries with in-house x-ray, complete primary care services and allergy testing and treatment. Dr. Cline, board certified physician, also has admitting privileges with Nacogdoches Medical Center. Laura Briggs, ACNP-BC and Candace Carter, FNP-C additionally care for patients in the Center clinic along with Dr. Cline.

December 11, 2017 - The Shelby County Children's Advocacy Center would like to thank Wright Chrysler Jeep Dodge and everyone who donated to "Stock a Ram for Santa".

Thank you for giving to the children in our community. Your thoughtfulness makes the Christmas season more joyful for us all!

December 11, 2017 (Photos coming soon!) - With 23 to 27 degree temperatures, Antonio Chavez was the first to cross the finish line at the Ugly Sweater 5K on Saturday, December 9th hosted by CHS Health Occupations Students of America (HOSA) with a time of 17:22.32 and an average speed of 10.7 mph.

The winner of the Ugly Sweater contest was Benjamin Prostell.

Money raised will help HOSA purchase supplies and travel to state and national conferences.

Race Results by age division:

8th grade and under
1st place - Alan Valadez
2nd place - Jose Valadez

High School & under
1st place - Antonio Chavez
2nd place - Jesus Gonzalez
3rd place - Fabian Morales

Ages 20-29
1st place - Vanessa Goings
2nd place - Jenny Nichols

Ages 30-39
1st place - Benjamin Prostell
2nd place - Charles Goings
3rd place - Sally Ross

Ages 40-49
1st place - Holly Burns

Ages 50-59
1st place - Robin Conway
2nd place - Donna Bowden
3rd place - Becky Harkness

December 8, 2017 (Application Form) - "Santa Rides a Motorcycle" will make its 37th and final run in memory of Ed Roberts who operated "Santa Rides a Motorcycle" here in Shelby County, to supply children with toys for Christmas.

Ed Roberts

Toy donations are needed to help make Santa Rides a Motorcycle's final run a success. A toy drop off day on the downtown Center Square is Saturday, December 9th from 11am until 5pm. The family said, "We want to make this the best last Santa Rides a Motorcycle."

The process is simple. Members of the community or the families themselves turn in requests for children. Each child’s information, name and age, is filled out on a request sheet and then the toys, which have all been donated, are bagged for the family. Once bags are ready to go, volunteer from each area collect the bags and deliver them to the parents – hopefully without the children seeing!

Roberts said in a 2009 interview with Shelby County Today, “It’s not about me but about these kids that get these toys! It is a fun thing and something I want to do the rest of my life.”

Roberts passed away May 7 of this year at the age of 74. He finished out his life doing what he loved - helping families to have a better Christmas!

For more information or any questions, contact Heather at 936-488-2278.

December 8, 2017 - My wife, Bonnye Sholmire, passed away on Thanksgiving, November 23, 2017, after battling cancer for a long time. She and I both grew up with very little and it became her passion to provide as many Christmas gifts for needy kids as possible wherever we lived. Her final wish was no flowers, just give to the Marine Corps Toys for Tots or any local group providing gifts for needy kids.

The outpouring of support for Bonnye’s final wish has been overwhelming and I want to thank everyone who has given something for kids this Christmas season. Bonnye would be proud and very happy to know about the many kids you have given so generously to in her memory.

Many, many thanks and Merry Christmas to each and every one,
Bob Sholmire

December 7, 2017 - (Album1, Album2) - The Miss Merry Christmas and Mister Happy Holiday's pageant had a "Magical Disney Christmas" on Saturday, December 2, 2017 at the Center Middle School. The following contestants won the hearts of the judges:

Grand Supreme: (0-23 month) Aryn McAdams, (2-5 years) Cherrich Choice, and (6-16 years) Morgan Thomasee

Baby Miss Merry Christmas (0-11 months) - Daisy Smith
Tiny Miss Merry Christmas - Scarlett Miller
Toddler Miss Merry Christmas - Emma Moore
Little Miss Merry Christmas - Camille Whiteside
Petite Miss Merry Christmas - Maria Flores
Preteen Miss Merry Christmas - Baylee Whiteside
Teen Miss Merry Christmas - Mahayia Ratcliff

Miss Merry Christmas Peoples Choice - Remi Ward

December 7, 2017 - Shelby County 4-H Textile’s project is happy to announce their partnership with VFW post 8904 and Texas Extension Education Association (TEEA) XYZ Homemaker’s Club in the Quilts of Valor program. The Quilts of Valor program is a national non-profit organization that was formed in 2003 to recognize and honor local servicemen and women touched by conflict or war. As of July, over 161,000 quilts have been presented across the U.S. The quilts presented are a token of appreciation that says, “thank you for your service, sacrifice and valor.” 

According to Sherry Riley, Director of the Shelby County Veteran’s Office, there are over 400 veterans on active file in our area.

4-H Textile project members, made up of youth ages 9 to 18, are pleased to participate in this special recognition and community service project by designing, sewing, and quilting an award that can be used by a veteran as either a lap or bed quilt. These lifetime awards will be stitched by the 4-H’ers with love, prayers and healing thoughts and will also let these recipients know that the local community is thankful for their service and sacrifice.

McSwain is seen on November 20, 2017 presenting the VFW Post 8904 members with the idea of partnering with the post in the production of quilts.