Kemp candidate forum
A Kemp “meet the candidate night” is set for Thursday (tonight)
in the Kemp High School auditorium. Both city and school
candidates are invited, Kemp Business and Civic League president
Diana Chambers said.
Entries are being accepted through 5 p.m. Thursday (today) for
the sixth annual Courtney Howard Memorial Scholarship golf
tournament, set for Saturday, May 14. For entry form, contact
Groom & Sons’ Hardware and Lumber at (903) 887-1689.
Pet transport sought
With the increase in gasoline prices, the Humane Society of
Cedar Creek Lake is seeking help on Mondays transporting animals
to Crandall for spay/neuter services. It’s possible to use the
shelter van if necessary. For information call (903) 432-3422.
Pet food needed
Happy Tails runs a pet food bank and has been hit hard with the
rising gas prices. Please donate if you can by calling (903)
880-4124 or cell (903) 275-5990,
Adopt a Happy Tail Inc. (a 501(c)(3) organization).
CC Republican Club
The Cedar Creek Republican Club meets for dinner at 6:15 p.m.
Thursday (tonight), followed by a program from retired Henderson
County attorney James Owen at Vetoni’s Italian Restaurant, 428
N. Gun Barrel Lane, GBC. Everyone is welcome.
MAGS pasta dinner
The Mabank Area Good Samaritans are hosting a pasta dinner
benefitting the Tri-County MAGS Food Pantry from 5:30 to 7:30
p.m. Friday, April 29, at First United Methodist Church, Mabank.
For tickets and information, contact Bill Burnett at (903)
Vegetable seed sale
The Texas AgriLife Extension Service/Kaufman County Master
Gardeners sale of vegetable seeds recommended for this area and
a variety of plants will be held from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. Friday,
April 29, at the Garden Learning Center, the SW corner of FM
1388 and SH 34 intersection, Kaufman. For information call (972)
Trinity Valley Community College will host a professional
development workshop for social workers, therapists and
counselors from 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Friday, April 29. Tuition
charged and need to bring a difficult case for discussion. For
information call (903) 675-6212 or visit
Styx gospel event
The Styx monthly Gospel singing is set for 7 p.m. Friday, April
29. Everyone is welcome to bring their music, family and
friends. For information call (214) 616-4659 or (903) 498-8182.
Trinity Valley Community College is hosting a Zumbathon to
benefit the Henderson County Relay for Life. The Zumba class is
set for 2 to 3:30 p.m. Saturday, April 30, in the Student Union
Building ballroom. The class is taught by Donna Godwin. All
proceeds will benefit the Henderson County Cancer Society. For
information call Godwin at (9030 675-2627.
Boating garage sale
Friends of Boating are hosting a garage sale benefitting the
Coast Guard Auxiliary, starting at 8 a.m. Saturday, April 30, at
Tom Finley Park. For information call Betty Abbott at (903)
Bring outdated, unused prescription drugs, no questions asked,
between 10 a.m. and 2 p.m. Saturday, April 30, to the Kaufman
City Police Department, 105 Chestnut St., or the Kaufman County
Sheriff’s Office at 1900 U.S. 175. The program’s goal is to
prevent pill abuse and theft, a growing problem.
TVCC free concert
A farewell concert featuring the compositions of Velma Burnett
will be held at 3 p.m. Sunday, May 1, at the Dogwood Church at
6467 FM 2494 in Athens. Burnett leaves TVCC after a decade. TVCC
students will be performing under the direction of choir
director Dr. Byron McGilvray.
WCR committee meets
The Henderson County Women’s Council of Realtors golf tournament
committee meets at 6 p.m. Monday, May 2, at Cedar Isle.
Volunteers and prize items still needed. For information call
Shirley at (214) 695-0664, or Sue at (860) 276-7355.
Model A Ford Club
The Cedar Creek Model A Ford Club meets at 5:30 p.m. Tuesday,
May 3 (first Tuesday of each month), at the Dairy Queen in Seven
Points. Visitors are always welcome and you do not have to own a
Model A to join. For info, call Sue Capps at (903) 451-9651.
CCL Garden Club
The Cedar Creek Garden Club meets at 11:30 a.m. Friday, May 6,
in the Community Room at Tomlinson’s Funeral Home. The meeting
begins with a covered dish luncheon, followed by a plant
auction. Those interested are welcome to attend.
AL hot dog supper
The American Legion Post 310 Auxiliary offers Coney Island style
hot dogs with all the trimmings, plus homemade desserts from 5
to 7 p.m. Friday, May 6, benefitting various veteran-related
activities. The Post is located on south SH 198, GBC.
MHS car show
The Mabank High School Automotive Department is hosting a Car
Show fundraiser from 6 to 9:30 p.m. Friday, May 6, in the
automotive department parking lot at Mabank Junior High.
Proceeds benefit the high school automotive department. For
information or to register, call (903) 340-9105. Leave name and
The Retro Student Ministries presents “Unleashed Youth Summit
2011,” a lock-in set for 7 p.m. to 7 a.m. Friday/Saturday, May
6-7, at the Cain Center, Athens. A jam-packed service with
games, dramas, give-a-ways, worship and national speaker Trammel
Orr is planned. The night includes pizza, bungee run, sumo
wrestling, jousting, boxing, swimming and tons more. For info,
call (903) 887-5429 or visit
The Trinidad Church of Christ is hosting a Gospel Lectureship at
7 p.m. Saturday, May 7, at the church, located at 241 West
Scruggs, Trinidad, featuring the format, “Seven Men for Seven
Minutes,” with the theme “Unity of Spirit.” For information call
the church (903) 778-2536.
CCL Car Show
The annual Cedar Creek Lake Car Show and Krawfish Boil starts at
8 a.m. for car registration, with awards at 3 p.m. Saturday, May
7, at the Pavilion in Mabank. Crawfish served starting at 10:30
a.m. until gone. Event is over after awards are presented.
WCR Golf Tourney
The Henderson County Women’s Council of Realtors’ annual golf
tournament is set for Monday, May 9, at Cedar Creek Country
Club. Check-in for the 18-hole scramble at 10:30 a.m., followed
by lunch and 1 p.m. tee-off. For information call Shirley Salmon
at (214) 695-0664 or Sue Hosack at (860) 276-7355 or Lajean
Fenske at (903) 880-6628.
Caney Creek Baptist
Caney Creek Baptist Church is hosting a family night at 6 p.m.
Wednesday, May 11, at the church located at 5441 FM 3054,
Malakoff. The public is invited to enjoy a meal at 6 p.m., with
Bible study and programs following. For information call (903)
Gardener is ‘in’
The Henderson County Master Gardeners will be available to
answer questions by phone during April and May. Call the
AgriLife Extension Office between 9 a.m. and 12:30 p.m. at (903)
675-6130, and ask for your Master Gardener.
Meals on Wheels
Kemp Senior Citizen Center is seeking volunteer drivers for its
Meals on Wheels program. Only one hour a day, and you can pick
the day or days. Call Lisa Stinnett at (903) 498-4046.
News in Brief policy
News in Brief is a venue in which nonprofit organizations can
promote their services and/or fund-raising events at no cost.
These articles should include only basic information – who,
what, when and where. Articles must include publishable contact
information and a phone number.
The deadline for submission is 4 p.m. Monday for each Thursday’s
issue and 4 p.m. Wednesday for each Sunday’s issue.
Announcements will run for four issues (two weeks).
Organizations needing to relay more information on services or
events, or who seek a longer promotion time, are encouraged to
call our advertising staff at (903) 887-4511.
MediaOne LLC considers nonprofit organizations to be groups
operating primarily on a volunteer basis providing a service for
others. Organizations with paid employees cannot use this venue
to promote their services.
main sports news obits lake life events views classifieds
Skeletal remains found
By Barbara Gartman
Monitor Staff Writer
KEMP–A Kemp resident walking in the woods near his house
at the end of 9th Street made a gruesome discovery late last
He came across a human skull and various other bones in a wooded
area about 75 to 100 yards from the exit ramp, just east of the
former First National Bank drive-thru, located at the corner of
9th Street and eastbound lanes of U.S. Highway 175.
Monitor Photo/Barbara Gartman
Friday, Kaufman County Sheriff’s Department investigators search
the woods for skeletal remains near the State Highway 274 exit
ramp off U.S. 175. The crime scene tape encircled the wooded
area, and the sound of chain saws could be heard as
investigators cleared brush and trees from the site where a
skull and several bones were found.
The resident called the property owner, who in turn called
the Kemp Police Department.
“I went over there with one of my officers and then we went back
to the station and looked up the property and determined it was
in the county,” Chief Richard Clemmo said.
Clemmo and officer Steven Crowley confirmed the find and
location and called the Kaufman County Sheriff’s Department to
turn the information over to them.
That call came in at 5:30 p.m., according to a press release
from the Sheriff’s Department.
The next day, eastbound motorists noticed the county’s mobile
communications command post set up along the side of the
County investigators confirmed the skeletal remains were found
in a heavily wooded area, and called in the Texas Rangers.
“The remains appeared to have been at the location for an
extended period of time,” the release stated.
The find was turned over to a forensic pathologist for
identification and possible cause of death.
Anyone with any information regarding the remains is asked to
contact the Sheriff’s Office at (972) 932-4337 or to remain
anonymous, call in any information to the tip line at Kaufman
County Crime Stoppers toll-free at (877) 847- 7522.
Tornadoes threaten Cedar Creek Lake area
Monitor Photo/Kim Breeze
This tornado photo was taken from the Seven Points-Kemp side of
Cedar Creek Lake shooting toward the Cedar Creek Country Club
shortly before 5 p.m. Tuesday. No injuries or major damage was
reported by police scanner from Mabank Police Department by 5:30
p.m. Country club personnel reported hearing the sound of a
freight train over the back part of the golf course, but no
damage was observed. At 5:40 p.m., the police scanner reported a
confirmed touchdown in Roddy. The National Weather Service
predicted a series of storms to roll through the area as the
night progressed with the area under a continued tornado warning
until 10 p.m. See more storm coverage in Sunday’s issue.
Seven Points firefighters return from
battling West Texas wildfires
By Barbara Gartman
Monitor Staff Writer
SEVEN POINTS–“Texas is burning” has been heard on national news
and in printed news for weeks, since the beginning of the worst
fire season in many years.
Statewide, almost 1.5 million acres have burned in three major
fire centers, costing the lives of two firefighters and
destroying 1,370 homes.
Hurricane Alex last July may be the cause of the massive fires.
Heavy rains from Alex brought on a bloom of lush growth, but
then the extra-cold winter killed everything out.
An extremely dry February and March turned dead brush, grass and
weeds into a tinderbox, just waiting for any spark to set it
One of the most costly and widespread wildfire areas is centered
around Possum Kingdom Lake, where about 450 firefighters are
working to save homes and lives. So far, about 150,000 acres
have burned and more than 150 homes were destroyed during the
Some were called in by the National Forest Service, while
others, such as a crew from the Seven Points Volunteer Fire
Department, saw the need and volunteered.
“I called and volunteered with the state coordinator out of
Dallas,” fire chief Joe Dobbs said.
They took two trucks, each with a crew of two firefighters –
Stephen Van Huss, Emily Conn, Lt. Billy McKenzie and Dobbs.
“That still left us with 15 to 20 responders protecting our
district (Seven Points and surrounding area),” Dobbs pointed
The little group spent seven days fighting fires in the Possum
Kingdom Lake area, arriving back in Seven Points at 3 p.m.
Family and other SPVFD members welcomed the men home, greeting
them with a huge water spray from Engine 1 and Rescue 3.
Group members were still riding an adrenaline high as they began
talking about their dramatic adventures.
“The people were great, especially for the situation they were
going through. They were extremely hospitable,” Van Huss said.
Seven Points firefighters were tasked with road and street
patrols, protecting homes from the advancing flames.
Firefighters faced a constant battle against high winds,
sometimes gusting more than 40 mph, a lack of humidity and the
“At one point, our truck thermometer read 106 (degrees),”
The heat was so tremendous that when they put the fire out in an
area, it would reignite only a few feet away, sometimes behind
“We would spray our hoses on the ground and steam would rise up,
even when there was no fire,” Dobbs recalled.
The long hours were exhausting, so much so that once back at the
place where they were staying, it seemed a lot easier to just
fall asleep than to take time to enjoy a nearby pool.
“We were on the clock from 7:15 a.m. until we returned sometime
after 10:30 p.m.,” Dobbs explained. “And, these people are all
volunteers. They don’t receive any pay for what they do.
“The wind kept the smoke and ashes blowing around so that the
white ash covered everything, even our lunches when we ate,”
“I have never done this before,” Conn admitted. “It was crazy. I
have never seen so much fire and smoke. But, it was a great
experience that I will never forget.”
Many residents not in the immediate fire area were without
utilities – water, electricity, gas and phone service – and had
been for days, the firefighters reported.
“One woman called back here to Seven Points to tell how the
Seven Points team had saved her brother’s home,” Dobbs said.
“They saved a deer rancher’s herd,” he added. “Almost 100 were
in a pen. The rancher had turned a lot of others out, fearing
the fire, but the ones in the pen (were saved because) the
firefighters kept the flames back.”
All four returning firefighters were full of favorable comments
on the people in the area, particularly the cafe where they ate
– describing huge chicken fried steaks served with mashed
potatoes and bowls of cream gravy.
Even though the residents were enduring tremendous hardships,
“everyone was friendly and would wave at us as we went by,”
“We are so concerned about the people. That’s why we do this
job,” Dobbs pointed out. “One lady had lost two expensive homes.
She looked as if she was in shock, and none of us knew what to
say to her. But she turned around and bought dinner for all the
“At one point that first day (Monday), we were patrolling on a
narrow country road. Someone called us and said the fire was
near a house,” McKenzie said.
“We traveled on some back roads that were so small and rough,
they made the roads in Seven Points look like highways,” he
“When we got there, the fire was less than a quarter-mile away
and it was tree-topping (burning fast in the tops of the trees,
jumping from one to another). That was a very intense
situation,” McKenzie said. “The situation up close is a lot more
real than when you see it on TV.”
If the current drought continues, what is happening in West
Texas could very well happen in North and East Texas, and the
Cedar Creek Lake area, the firefighters warned.
“The incident commander warned us that East Texas is a sleeping
giant,” Dobbs said.
The U.S. Forestry Service has taken over the task of getting the
fires under control, but the firefighters agreed they would
return if asked.
Van Huss said his favorite part of the experience was the close
bond firefighters formed.
“We were two complete companies, but within two days, we were
family,” he said. “The camaraderie was sensational.”