investigators find drugs in vehicles
Monitor Staff Reports
CEDAR CREEK LAKE–The Henderson County Drug Enforcement Unit reported
several area drug arrests this week.
Investigator Kenny Collard arrested Virginia Tarwater Hodges, 44, in the
Tamarack subdivision in Gun Barrel City following a traffic stop around
4 p.m. Tuesday.
She was driving a black Ford Ranger pickup on Wildwind Street when
Collard stopped her on a minor traffic violation.
Collard saw an open container of an alcoholic beverage inside the
vehicle, and asked the occupants to step outside while he conducted a
Hodges attempted to hide two baggies of what is believed to be
One baggie tore and its contents leaked out from behind the license
plate, where she allegedly attempted to hide it. A further search of the
vehicle revealed an even bigger bag of the substance inside her purse.
Hodges was charged with manufacture/delivery of a controlled substance,
Penalty Group 1 (greater than 4 grams and less than 200 grams), a first
degree felony, and tampering/fabricating physical evidence, a third
She is being held at the Henderson County Justice Center. Her bond had
not yet been set. No charges were filed on her passenger.
A second incident resulted from a tip that narcotics activity was being
conducted at a game room at Parkway Storage on FM 85 just outside Seven
With consent to search, investigators located a quantity of
methamphetamine inside the vehicle of Ray Glenn Followwell, 45, and
Miles Christopher Gray, 25.
The men were charged with possession of a controlled substance Penalty
Group 1, more than one gram and less than four grams, a third degree
felony, punishable by two-10 years in prison and up to a $10,000 fine.
No bond has been set.
‘The Biggest Loser’ premiers
Tuesday with local teacher
By Barbara Gartman
Monitor Staff Writer
CEDAR CREEK LAKE–The premier of the NBC hit series, “The Biggest Loser,”
set for 7 p.m. Tuesday, Sept. 15, will have a local teacher, Abby Rike,
as one of its participants.
Rike, 35, a Mabank resident, lost her husband and her two children, age
5 and 18 days, in 2006 in a tragic car accident on State Highway 198.
She and her husband were both teachers at Canton High School at the time
of the accident.
Following the accident, Rike was struggling with the loss and trying to
find her way back.
As a teacher, she had encouraged her students to do their personal best,
but said she often felt like a hypocrite, since she wasn’t doing the
She had received a message from a friend who was a former contestant on
the show, encouraging her to apply, she recalled.
“I was having a particularly bad day, doing a lot of crying, and I
called my mom, telling her about the show. She said ‘go for it’” Rike
said, adding it was Friday, Feb. 13, when she made her decision.
Filming for the fall series began in May, and everyone on this season
finished up and went home in August, NBC publicity agent Jill Carmen
The participants will continue to diet and exercise in order to lose
weight to compete for the grand prize.
Even though there can’t be more than one first place winner, Rike is
glad she joined the program.
“That’s the beauty of ‘The Biggest Loser,’ everybody wins. I feel like a
new person. I’m a winner, regardless of what (prize) I win,” she
“It has been so rewarding. I was just muddling along, until I began
taking part in ‘The Biggest Loser.’ It has been so rewarding,” Rike
There are definitely no regrets, Rike said, sounding bubbly and excited.
She offered an encouraging piece of advice for those who are also trying
to recover from life-altering events.
“When you’re stuck in a rut, it’s never too late or hopeless to change.
Basically, wherever you are in life can be your new beginning,” Rike
Dieting alone is not the end solution, as she did a lot of exercising,
“You have to get up and move,” she added..
“The Biggest Loser” offers more than just a weight loss program, she
said, adding the exercise and education involved in teaching someone to
alter their eating habits and life-style are a part of the changes
needed in order to lose weight.
“Of course, the health benefits are the biggest advantage. The increased
energy benefits, that truly has been a huge part of my experience,” Rike
“I am going to finish this journey. I may go back to school and finish
my doctorate. I’ve finished my master’s – a year ago in August,” she
Rike maintained a 4.0 grade point average while she earned her master of
Rike has taken a break from teaching this year while participating in
“I do enjoy teaching, and I am thinking about maybe teaching some of the
programs for teachers,” she added.
Rike is among 16 contestants vying for a chance to compete for the grand
prize of $250,000, or the secondary prize of $100,000.
The winner will be determined by the greatest percentage of body weight
lost, Carmen explained.
An excited Rike said she will definitely be among the viewers Tuesday.
She will be at a premier party with friends in Louisiana that night.
“We are all going to watch it together,” she said.
The season finale is set for Tuesday, Dec. 8.
against running for third term
CEDAR CREEK LAKE–Henderson County Judge David
Holstein announced Friday afternoon that he will not be seeking
re-election next year.
Holstein, who became County Judge by defeating Richard Sanders eight
years ago, said he was making the decision for family reasons.
Holstein released the following statement Friday afternoon:
“After much thought and discussion with my family, my supporters and my
constituents, I have decided not to seek re-election for the office of
county judge in 2010. The time is right to take a sabbatical from public
life. It is time for me to step aside, spend more time with my family,
and begin another chapter in my life.
“Serving as county judge has been an exciting and rewarding experience,
and I am proud to have played a part in the growth and development of
“When I first ran for count judge in 2002, I felt, if I was fortunate
enough to be elected, it would be a two-term commitment. My goal then,
is the same as it is now, to be a public servant, not a lifelong
“I have been truly blessed to be able to serve the people of this county
and want to thank you for every vote you cast for me throughout the
primaries and two general elections.
“Also, I especially want to thank all those who worked so hard during my
two election campaigns. While at this time, I am closing a chapter in my
career as Henderson County Judge, I will continue to be active in the
life, growth and development of the community that my family and I call