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February 3, 1999

Rec board discusses plans at first meeting

Staff Writer
PECOS, Feb. 3, 1999 - The newly-formed Community Sports and Recreation Department board held their first meeting Tuesday evening to discuss the framework for the program.

The group is comprised of members representing Reeves County, the Town of Pecos City and the Pecos-Barstow-Toyah ISD, the three entities involved in the project.

County Judge Jimmy B. Galindo told board members that he and recreation department director Nora Geron had put together a business framework. "We want to share the overall framework we have come up with and highlight all the important areas," he said.

Geron stated that this will be a recreation and wellness program. Recreation being the participation in activities done during leisure time to relax, educate, exercise and invigorate the body and mind.

Wellness is the total approach to maximizing one's potential in the physical, intellectual, occupational, social, spiritual and emotional well being.

Galindo stated that the draft of the program given to board members is just a preliminary one, and can be changed or modified according to input provided from the board members.

"We will provide an analysis of the needs of individuals," said Geron.

Geron stated that a self-analysis will be done on the individual at the Reeves County Hospital including a stress test, urine and SMAC for a small fee. "This is voluntarily, it will be up to the individual if they want this particular analysis," he said.

"I'm hoping that you can help us get these people in this program," Geron told the board members.

She said that the main objective is to get Pecos healthy, out of the hospitals, and the second objective is doing something for the youth.

"There's not much for our kids to do after school and on weekends. We want to get them away from the television on Saturdays mornings and into doing something healthy," said Geron, who coached the Pecos High School volleyball team for 17 years before retiring in 1996.

After-school activities will be provided for youngsters in grades 7-12 and Saturday mornings will be for children in kindergarten through sixth grades, according to Geron, who provided a "tentative" schedule of the activities that will be provided through the program.

"And this schedule can change according to the needs and the input we receive," she said.

Geron stated that if something is not on the schedule that someone would like, if it's feasible it will be looked into.

Men's softball, girl's softball and touch football are the programs that are currently active and the new department will be there to help with those programs. "We want to enhance those programs that are already working, not tear them down," she said.

Geron stated that she would also like to see all those that want to participate in a program do so. "If there is a fee and one youngster can't afford it, we want to find a way for that youngster to participate anyway," she said.

"We won't turn anybody away," Geron said, while adding that in the case where there are awards given out to teams and individuals, there will have to be a charge to help fund those programs.

Walking will be a self-paced program, where individuals fill out cards and awards will be handed out for the number of miles completed.

"Once again, this is just a draft, it can change and it will if that is what the people want," said Galindo.

Office space in the old gym at the Pecos High School will be provided for Geron. "I talked to our maintenance director and he's hoping we can complete this office by March," she said.

Galindo stated that he has also spoken to PHS assistant principal Victor Tarin about the smaller gym and has been getting estimates on how much it will cost to build racquetball courts in that area.

Other activities were discussed during the meeting, such as gymnastics and fundraisers to help fund the different programs.

"The majority of the people who participate in the programs such as T-Ball, softball and the other programs usually don't mind the fee," said Johnny Terrazas. "I don't think it will be problem there," he said.

"There's always one child, though, who can't afford those $10 and I don't want to turn him away, so we'll find a way for him to participate," said Geron.

Galindo stated that the group will meet once again at 5:15 p.m. next Tuesday and every Tuesday until March and until all items can be covered.

"We can take this draft and expand on it, or delete, whichever you want to do, until we get a fixed strategic plan," said Galindo.

Police expect no new charges in Ortiz death

Staff Writer
PECOS, Feb. 3, 1999 - Autopsy reports on a hit-and-run victim who died just before Christmas revealed that he died from a blunt force injury to the head and also had acute bronchial pneumonia, according to investigator Freddy Contreras, who added that no further charges were expected in the case.

Contreras stated that he had received the official autopsy report recently on the cause of death of Jesus Olivas Ortiz, 57, who died on Dec. 24 in Odessa Medical Center following an accident four days earlier.

Ortiz was the victim of a hit-and-run accident on Sunday, Dec. 20, in which he was struck by a vehicle on U.S. 285 (North Cedar Street), about 2 a.m.

A passing motorist found Ortiz lying in the northbound lane of U.S. 285 just north of the railroad tracks just after 2 a.m. He stopped and protected the victim while police and an ambulance were summoned.

Rebecca Ann Campos, 33, was charged with failure to stop and render aid to Ortiz after police determined her vehicle had struck Ortiz. She later turned herself in to authorities.

Campos failed to give her name, address, vehicle registration number and name of her liability insurance carrier to anyone at the accident scene, and did not assist Ortiz, who was in need of medical treatment, according to an indictment returned by a 143rd District Court grand jury last month.

Campos' bond was set at $5,000.

"At this time there is no further evidence that other charges will be filed," said Contreras. "She struck him and she had the right of way and there are no other charges that we can charge her with," he said.

It had been reported that Ortiz may have been attacked and left in the roadway prior to the accident, but other injuries were not listed on the autopsy report received by Contreras.

New TxDOT engineer began career in Pecos

Paul Henderson has returned to the office where his engineering career began in 1963 the Texas Department of Transportation's Pecos office.

Henderson is the new area engineer, coming off a 20-year career building highways as a chief engineer with the U.S. Department of Interior's Bureau of Indian Affairs.

"It's like coming back home," Henderson said, noting that he spent the first five years of his road-building career in the Pecos office. He is a Crane High school graduate, and his wife, Edna, graduated from Alpine High School.

District Engineer Jose E. Morales named Henderson to succeed Doug Eichorst, who was transferred in November to the Midland Area after two years in Pecos. He will oversee all highway construction and maintenance in Reeves and three adjoining counties - Ward, Winkler and Loving.

Henderson, who set the survey control points for the Interstate 20 and 10 interchange during his first stint in Pecos, transferred to TxDOT's Fort Worth District. In 1978, he was named the Bureau of Indian Affairs highway engineer in Gallup, N.M. and built the first four-lane undivided highway on the Navajo Reservation.

He was transferred to Anadarko, Okla., in 1981 where he served as the Bureau of Indian Affairs' Area Engineer for 18 years, overseeing construction and maintenance for 1,460 miles of highway in a four-state region, including Texas, Oklahoma, Kansas and Nebraska. He retired from his federal post in January.

Henderson earned a bachelor of science degree in civil engineering in 1972 from the University of Texas at Arlington and was licensed just two years later.

The Hendersons have seven children and nine grandchildren.

Grant OKed for new park in Balmorhea

Staff Writer
Balmorhea and the Texas Parks and Wildlife have teamed up to build a community park in the southeast area of town.

City Secretary Jeannie Clark said this morning that the TPW grant of $63,000 is the only one the city has applied for recently.

Along with private donations, the city of Balmorhea and the Texas Department of Criminal Justice will provide matching funds in the form of labor, equipment and materials, for a total project cost of $126,000.

The park, to be located on .8 acre of land, will have three covered picnic tables, a picnic pavilion with a grill, a multi-purpose court for shuffleboard, volleyball and basketball.

Children will have a playground with covered bench swings. Adults can also enjoy pits for horse shoes and washers.

A one-mile walking trail will access the fishing pond, xeriscape garden, utilities and landscaping.

State Sen. Frank Madla announced the grant this morning, congratulating all those who worked so hard to make the project a reality.


PECOS, Feb. 3, 1999 - High Tuesday 59; low last night 27. Tonight, partly cloudy. Low in the upper 30s. Northeast to east wind 5-10 mph. Thursday, mostly cloudy. High in the mid to upper 60s. southeast wind 10-20 mph.

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Pecos Enterprise
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