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Daily Newspaper and Tourism Guide for Reeves County Trans Pecos, Big Bend of West Texas


October 20, 1997

Group of 20 wins $55 million lottery Saturday

TEXAS CITY, Texas (AP) October 20, 1997 - It wasn't a midnight madness loan promotion that had the Texas First Bank open at 2 a.m. Sunday. Instead, it was a celebration of sorts.

Bank officials opened at the odd hour so 20 lucky Texas City residents would have a safe place for their $55 million Lotto Texas ticket.

State lottery officials wouldn't confirm who had won the ticket until it is presented in Austin - the winners planned to do that today. But the authorities said the sole winner of Saturday night's drawing was purchased in Texas City.

As the winners found out about their fortune, most went to Mohammed Khatani's convenience store, where the ticket had been purchased.

"We were doing a little jig, I tell you," new millionaire Jackie Childress told the Texas City Sun. "I have never even considered that I would have a winning ticket when I buy a lottery ticket because I think it's so ridiculous to think that."

Then the winners went to the bank. Since their only common link was that they shopped at Khatani's store, none of them knew each other well and didn't fully trust one another.

They contacted Texas City Mayor Chuck Doyle, who is chief executive of the Texas First Banks banking group.

The bank arranged for a letter of agreement to be drawn up and for the ticket to be kept there until today.

One of those not present was Bettye Reed, who didn't find out she was rich until Sunday afternoon - after she had finished working her job as a waitress.

The 64-year-old waitress said somebody walked into Kelley's Restaurant in La Marque with the big news.

"I had the breakfast shift this morning," she said. "So I had no idea I was one of the winners."

Ms. Reed, who says she's worked since she was 16, told her employer not to expect her today.

"Yes, I did. I'm serious. I'm not going to work. I'm going to Austin," she said.

The winning numbers on Saturday were nine, 14, 16, 27, 29 and 50.

It's the second time this year a Lotto winner came from the area. Michael Plowman of La Marque won a $4 million jackpot in March.

Copyright 1997 Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

Texas makes up fed cuts with state funds

By The Associated Press

October 20, 1997 - Texas is one of 12 states that use state funds to partially compensate for federal funds cut off from legal immigrants.

However, 18 states are using 100 percent state money for cash assistance to legal immigrants during their first five years of residence. They are California, Colorado, Connecticut, Georgia, Hawaii, Kansas, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, Michigan, Minnes
ota, Nebraska, New York, Oregon, Pennsylvania, Utah, Vermont and Washington.

Sixteen states use state money for Medicaid services to legal immigrants during their first five years of residence: California, Connecticut, Kansas, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, Michigan, Minnesota, Nebraska, New Mexico, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, V
ermont, Virginia, Washington and Wisconsin. Twelve states are at least partly making up federal cuts in food stamps: California, Colorado, Florida, Maryland, Minnesota, Massachusetts, Nebraska, New Jersey, New York, Rhode Island, Texas and Washington.

Individual state policies differ: For instance, some states have residency requirements or provisions that take into account an immigrant sponsor's income.

Copyright 1997 Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

Trans-Pecos Cotton Assn. keeps same directors

PECOS, October 20, 1997 - Members of the Trans-Pecos Cotton Association gathered last Tuesday evening for their annual meeting and election of directors. According to Trans-Pecos Cotton President Bob Bickley, there was no change on the board.

The group had a full day, holding its quarterly director's meeting early, followed by a panel discussion sponsored by the Texas Department of Agriculture about 2:30 in the afternoon. The topic of the TDA meeting was combating the pink boll worm and boll

Then, at 3:30 p.m., Texas A&M's Texas Agricultural Experiment Station presented Field Day 1997. During the two-hour seminar, comparative weather graphs, suggested pesticide usages and alternative crops for the Trans-Pecos area were discussed.

The alternative crops discussed included lesquerella, or bladderpod, and guayule.

Lesquerella, a native of the Chihuahuan Desert, produces an oil similar to castor oil and in many cases may replace it. The U.S. imports more than 30,000 tons of castor oil and its derivatives annually. Guayule is an alternative source of hypo-allergenic

latex. Since the plant enters dormancy when water is scarce, it may be a profitable crop for the area.

Newly re-elected to the board of directors of the Trans-Pecos Cotton Association are Dennis Braden, Elmer Braden, Ted Godrey, David Z. Hess, Kenneth Lindemann, Sam Miller, Dr. Jaroy Moore (advisory director), Ysidro Renteria, Jesus Ruiz, Dale Toone and L

arry Turnbough.

The group followed the elections with a fish fry for members of the association as well as their guests.

Band takes Division 2

PECOS, October 20, 1997 - Pecos Eagle Band did an outstanding job Saturday, at Ratliff Stadium, according to Band Director Steven Clary.

"It was the best performance since I've been here," said Clary. "It was truly a marching show," he said.

The band took a Division II, but was praised by the directors for their outstanding performance.

"We have a lot of freshman, but they really did good," said Clary.

Eagle band members will have solo and ensemble competition in February and concert and sight reading in April. Big Spring and Andrews both placed Division I and will advance to regional competition in Amarillo this coming Saturday.

The Pecos band performed selections from Andrew Lord Webber,'s musicals "Jesus Christ Superstar," "Evita" and "Phantom of the Opera."

The Pecos band has increased in size this year with more freshmen participating, according to Clary.

The band also received new, tailored uniforms this year.

Pecos misses list for juvenile corrections facility

From Staff and Wire Reports

PECOS, October 20, 1997 - When the Texas Youth Commission (TYC) announced the short list in the competition for a new juvenile corrections facility today Pecos was not there.

"They called us a few minutes ago and told us Pecos was not one of them," said Pecos City Manager Kenneth Neal at about noon today. "We are very disappointed."

A dozen sites in 11 Texas communities did make the short list. TYC officials said the sites were chosen from 43 proposals made by 40 communities across the state.

The commission is planning to build a 330-bed facility, which could be expanded to 660 beds if needed, that would open in 1999.

Commission spokeswoman Pamela Ward said that the top 10 proposals, according to their ratings by a commission review team, came from:

- McLennan County and the city of Mart.

- Jefferson County (adjacent to the TYC state school in Beaumont).

- Fannin County (Bonham).

- The city of Littlefield.

- Limestone County (Mexia).

- The Amarillo Economic Development Corp.

- Jefferson County (near the federal prison).

- Plainview-Hale County Industrial Foundation.

- The Marshall Economic Development Council.

- The city of Hamlin and Hamlin Development Corp.

In addition, two sites in South Texas - Cotulla and Brooks County - will be visited.

"We had a great response to the request for proposals," said Steve Robinson, the commission's executive director. "It's a very difficult task to select one community when you have so many fine communities that demonstrate their desire and ability to have
a TYC facility."

The dozen sites will be visited by TYC officials beginning Oct. 25. The communities then will be ranked, and a final selection made by the TYC board at its Nov. 20 meeting.

Neal said that although he was dissapointed that Pecos did not make the short list for the facility he was greatful for the way the community pulled together to try and get the project.

"We learned a lot," he said. "The community really pulled together. It was a good experience for all of us. Now, we are ready for the next project.

I appriciate the community support, from business leaders, the mayor and city council, the county judge and the commissioners and all the others. I don't know how to express my gratitude for their help."

When staffed for a juvenile population of 330, the estimated payroll would be $10 million.

Youths committed to TYC represent about two percent of the juveniles arrested each year in Texas. Some 4,500 juveniles are in TYC custody at 14 institutions and contract care programs statewide.

Press protests killings, assults of journalists

Associated Press Writer

GUADALAJARA, Mexico (AP) October 20, 1997 - The leading advocacy group for press freedom in the West says Latin America's young democracies have been tarnished by an upsurge of journalist killings, assaults and moves to muzzle the media.

Some 500 influential publishers and editors of the Inter American Press Association met at their annual meeting here, decrying what many saw as worrisome setbacks for nations progressing on trade and other fronts.

"Freedom of the press is one of the first guarantees of the full exercise of democracy," said Danilo Arbilla, editor of Uruguay's newsmagazine Busqueda and president of IAPA's press freedom committee.

But democracy has darkened from the killings of 10 journalists since March, hundreds of attacks and death threats against journalists digging into government corruption, privilege and misdeeds.

Colombia saw four killings of journalists since March, followed by Mexico with three, Guatemala with two and El Salvador one.

In Mexico, four more journalists have been abducted and 20 assaulted, five of them while investigating the deaths of six slum youths last seen Sept. 8 in police custody after a confused shootout.

"Attacks on both the press and freedom of the press ... have risen," said Arbilla during Sunday's opening of the five-day meeting.

Moves by several Latin American nations to censure the media present a troubling panorama, he said.

"In several countries, restrictive press laws are being drawn up or have been approved that strike with impunity against the very essence of democracy," said Arbilla. He challenged press and public to oppose those laws.

He cited an attempt by Venezuela's President Rafael Caldera to impose a media code of ethics, proposed Brazilian legislation to make certain "press crimes" punishable by daunting fines, and government attempts in Panama and Peru to quiet critical reporti

President Ernesto Zedillo on Tuesday was to speak on press freedom for the first time since he came under bruising criticism last week in France on charges he has stood by while Mexican officials violate human rights.

In other developments, El Salvador's IAPA delegation said the Aug. 25 shooting death of a 34-year-old radio reporter, Maria Lorena Saravia, and beatings of others have "seriously compromised" press freedom there.

Saravia's was the first murder of a journalist since a 12-year civil war ended in 1992. During that conflict, some 70,000 lives were lost, including those of 20 journalists.

Bartolome Mitre, publisher of Argentina's daily La Nacion, said the Jan. 25 killing of crusading photographer Jose Luis Cabezas has been followed by some 30 attacks or threats against fellow journalists there.

Cabezas' burned and bullet-riddled body was found in an Argentine beach resort, raising an international outcry and suspicions he died because of his investigations into suspected corruption.

Despite pressure by the Miami-based IAPA and public protests in Argentina, police have made little progress toward arresting Cabezas' killers or identifying the mastermind, Mitre said.

Cuba's code for foreign correspondents demanding that they work "with objectivity .. in accordance with the norms and regulations" of Cuba also earned disapproval.

Several panelists called for a free and independent press in Cuba, where numerous journalists have been arrested trying to report independently of state-controlled media.

Answering complaints by the Puerto Rican newspaper El Nuevo Dia about alleged government retaliation, the IAPA announced it would send a delegation to the island to investigate. A date for the mission was not immediately announced.

El Nuevo Dia representatives say the Puerto Rican government canceled paid advertising in the paper on April 14, after it published investigative reports about alleged tax irregularities by government telephone workers.

The government has said the move was part of a "marketing strategy" unrelated to El Nuevo Dia's stories.

Astronauts inducted into the Space Hall of Fame

ALAMOGORDO, N.M. (AP) October 20, 1997 - Col. Guion Steward Bluford Jr., the first black astronaut in space, is among the five newest inductees to the Space Hall of Fame.

Bluford flew combat missions during the Vietnam War and was part of the National Aeronautics and Space Administration's first group of shuttle astronauts in the late 1970s.

Bluford's four space missions included the shuttle's first night launch and landing, and carrying military classified pay loads into space.

Also inducted during the weekend ceremonies at the Space Center in Alamogordo were Brig. Gen. Charles Frank Bolden Jr., Claude Nicollier, Gen. Bernard A. Schriever and the late Dr. Walter Charles Williams.

Bolden is the first black astronaut to command space shuttle missions, including the first joint U.S.-Russian shuttle mission.

Bolden, a Marine, left NASA in 1994 to return to active duty and now is deputy commandant of midshipmen at the U.S. Naval Academy.

Bolden was a integral part of the return-to-flight effort after the space shuttle Challenger explosion in 1986, said Col. Sidney Gutierrez, who accepted Bolden's award.

"Great people ... really stand out in tough times. In 1986, 1987 and 1988, NASA was going through some tough times, and Charles Bolden stood out," said Gutierrez.

Nicollier is the first Swiss astronaut to fly aboard the space shuttle. In 1978, he was one of the first European astronauts selected by the European Space Agency.

In May 1980, NASA selected him to fly as a mission specialist. He was the mission specialist in 1993 during the Hubble Space Telescope repair mission that included a record-breaking five space walks. Nicollier performed three of those walks.

Schriever, born in 1910 in Germany, immigrated to America as a boy, became a naturalized citizen, and fought the Axis powers during World War II as the chief of maintenance and engineering and chief of staff for the Fifth Air Force.

During his military career, he earned credit for steering the Air Force toward missiles and space.

Schriever orchestrated the research and development of America's generations of ballistic missiles from the Atlas to the Minuteman, and was also responsible for realizing ground support equipment and tracking stations for the missiles.

Williams, as director of operations for Project Mercury and the supervisor of all Mercury missions, personally selected America's original seven astronauts.

Paul Haney, known in the space community as the voice of Mission Control, accepted Williams' award.

Copyright 1997 Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

Housing board to open reconstruction bids

PECOS, October 20, 1997 - Opening of bids for 1996 CIAP will be held at 5 p.m., Tuesday, Oct. 21, when the Pecos Housing Authority Board of Directors meets.

Bids had been procured earlier, but were all overbid for a major reconstruction project at the housing projects located on the south side of town and the elderly apartments located on Second Street.

Edward Vaughn, Jr. and Shane Sigrist, of Vaughn Architects Plus will be on hand to provide information and data on the project.

Other items on the agenda include an audit report for FY 1996; letter from Steve Brewer, Acting HUD Director, (acknowledgment of no findings on Audit Report for FY 1996).

A report on W.T. Council training held on Oct. 17, in Anthony, on HUD approved policies and procedures will be provided by PHA Director Nellie Gomez.

The board will also meet for Pecos Farm Labor Housing. A resolution will be discussed to turn over accounts to collection losses: Eva Zapata, $20 and Maria Olivas, $243.

Monthly financial statements will be discussed, monthly accounts payable, monthly occupancy status report and rent roll.

Crane injured in flight to Central New Mexico

ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. (AP) October 20, 1997 - Several endangered whooping cranes, including one injured by an eagle last week, are expected to arrive Tuesday at their winter home in central New Mexico.

The cranes flew 68 miles Sunday and crossed the Continental Divide, their last real challenge in terms of topography, said Hans Stuart, a spokesman for the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service here.

The birds were too far away to make it to the winter grounds at the Bosque del Apache National Wildlife near Socorro by today, he said.

Sunday's flight was uneventful - in contrast to Thursday's leg, when a whooping crane was attacked and injured by a golden eagle.

The whooper was treated by a veterinarian in Price, Utah, and given antibiotics and stitches in two separate areas of the leg.

The bird was doing much better and was going to be given a chance at a short flight Sunday evening, Stuart said.

Peter Clegg, a member of the flight's ground crew, said by phone Saturday that the bird almost certainly would be flying when the flock arrives at the Bosque del Apache.

Eagle attacks on the flock ended when it crossed into New Mexico, Clegg said Saturday.

Sunday was the sixth day of the experimental migration, which began Oct. 13 in Grace, Idaho. The 800-mile odyssey was undertaken to determine if the majestic white whoopers would follow ultralight planes to winter nesting grounds.

Although the whoopers have proved they will follow the ultralight piloted by Clegg's brother, Idaho rancher Kent Clegg, it's too soon to pronounce the experiment a success, Stuart said.

"They need to observe the birds all winter long and see what they do in the spring," he said.

If the birds migrate back north next spring as hoped, then ultralights could be used to help introduce a new migratory flock of whoopers in the southeastern United States.

Sandhill cranes which followed Kent Clegg and his ultralight during the past two falls have successfully flown back to areas near Clegg's ranch, Stuart has said.

Just 371 whooping cranes are known to exist. The only migratory flock, 180 whoopers, flies between Canada and Aransas National Wildlife Refuge, Texas.

A second migratory population could help prevent whooping crane extinction, Tom Stehn, national whooping crane coordinator for the Fish and Wildlife Service, has said.

The Aransas flock could be vulnerable to hurricanes, red tides, chemical spills, diseases or other problems, said Stehn, a member of Clegg's ground crew. A second population likely wouldn't be hit by a disaster affecting the first.

Drilling for oil is a complicated process

Staff Writer

PECOS, October 20, 1997 - There are currently five oil wells being re-completed or re-drilled in Reeves County, and they are among 7,000 oil and natural gas wells in the county now. Some of those 7,000 wells are gas wells, others are re-completions on ol

d wells. Having five wells being re-completed or re-drilled at one time is the most in the county since 1980, according to Susan Wemberly of Cravey Brothers, Inc.

In the past 17 years, many people have grown up or moved to this area that are not familiar with the oil business, so the following is a brief explanation of some of the things that go into drilling for oil and keeping a well running.

"The oil and gas industry is a lot like the real estate industry," said John Dorr, and expert in the field of Petroleum Land Management.

He said that Reeves County is in the Delaware Basin. The Delaware Basin, along with the Midland Basin, Central Basin Platform and the Val Verde Basin make up the Permian Basin. The Permian Basin is known for oil production throughout the world.

Dorr said "the oil and gas industry begins with a geologist who finds an area where he thinks there might be oil or gas. Then an oilman comes in and negotiates with the land owner to buy their mineral rights. If that works they bring in a rig and drill."

So, how do those geologists know where there might be oil or gas, one might ask.

According to Dorr, seismographic imaging is a popular method of searching for oil now, and recent technological advances in 3-D seismic have made the method even more accurate.

"Three dimensional seismic has revolutionized the industry, along with horizontal drilling," Dorr said.

"Horizontal drilling allows us to drain a lot more product from a well than is possible with regular drilling," said Dorr. He said that the drillers have a tool called a MWD, which will follow an azimuth. It has three bits on the end of a cone that run a

t different speeds and "steer" the drill. "It's expensive, but I think it's going to pay big dividends," Dorr said.

With 3-D seismic, he said, a "synthetic hole is drilled" every 120 feet. The seismic equipment sends sonar waves into the ground and "with the computer, we're better able to monitor the sound waves and make sense of them," said Dorr.

He said that "3-D seismic gives us more information as far as the structures in the earth."

The sonar waves are fed into a computer which maps the subterranean features, and makes maps which are similar to topographic maps of the earth's surface, where contour lines show high and low areas.

"What you're looking for when you're looking for oil is an upside-bowl," Dorr said.

Dorr further explained that seismic maps use sea level as a starting point. For example, he said, Pecos is about 2,600 feet above sea level, so oil that appears at 3,000 feet would be about 5,600 feet down.

He said that shale, a type of rock, is the barrier that keeps the oil from seeping off somewhere else, such as the earth's surface. "It doesn't produce anything," Dorr said.

Once the well is producing, there needs to be a pumper who monitors the well and keeps everything running smoothly. "A lot of credit has to be given to the pumpers, who see to the wells on a daily basis," said Dorr.

There are a lot of steps in getting the oil out of the well, though, explained Chris Cravey of Cravey Brothers Incorporated (CBI).

The well is lined with a casing, and then there is a layer of cement, and "most holes around here are 4 1/2 to 5 1/2 inches" in diameter, Cravey said.

He explained that a wire line truck with dynamite caps runs electronic wire lines down the casing and shoots holes through the casing so the oil can get from the ground, through the casing, and into the pipe to be pumped up to the surface.

Then, he said, they run tubing down the hole, and at the bottom of the tubing is a mud joint.


Santos H. Fuentes

Santos H. Fuentes, 68, died Saturday, Oct. 18, 1997 at Medical Center Hospital in Odessa following a lengthy illness.

A rosary will be held at 7:30 p.m., Monday, Oct. 20 at Martinez Funeral Home Chapel.

Mass is scheduled for 2 p.m., Tuesday, Oct. 21, at Santa Rosa Catholic Church with Father Antonio Mena officiating. Burial will be in Greenwood Cemetery.

She was born Jan. 2, 1929, in Balmorhea, was a housewife, a lifetime Pecos resident and a Catholic.

Survivors include her husband, Vivian Fuentes of Pecos; three sons, Ector, Oscar and Orlando Fuentes of Pecos; one daughter, Norma Chavez of Pecos; one brother, Johnny Hernandez of Kermit; two sisters, Felicia Rayos of Pecos, Belia Sanchez of Monahans; 1
5 grandchildren and seven great-grandchildren.

Martinez Funeral Home is in charge of arrangements.


PECOS, October 20, 1997 - High Sunday, 93, low this morning, 54. A chance of rainfall early this week follows a new cold front edging southward through Texas. The front early today extended from the Paris area to Fort Worth, then to Abilene, Midland and
San Angelo. Behind the system, low temperatures were in the 40s in West Texas and low 50s in the north. Ahead of it, readings were in the upper 60s along the coast and deep south. It was 49 degrees at Junction and 58 at Galveston, Rockport and Brownsvill
e. Cloudy skies were expected through Tuesday with a slight chance of showers in North and West Texas. Daytime highs should range from the 60s to 80s, including 90s in the Big Bend valleys, with overnight lows from the 40s to 50s.

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