Two die in wrecks over weekend
18-wheeler veers off road, driver found dead
Motorcyclist dies in separate wreck
Monitor Staff Reports
MABANK–Local law enforcement worked a
fatal one-vehicle accident late Friday and into Saturday afternoon along
U.S. Highway 175 approaching CJ’s in Mabank.
It is unknown why the driver of an eastbound 18-wheeler veered off the
right-hand side of the road and into the woods around 5:30 p.m. Friday.
The Longview driver died at the scene.
Allen Wood, 51, had left Waxahachie and was likely on his way home when
he listed to the right, his trailer clipping a highway sign and mangling
his cab in a thick stand of trees.
The body was removed and an autopsy was ordered to determine the cause
Mabank Police Chief Kyle McAfee said it took quite a while to get the
truck dislodged from the woods and clear the wreckage.
The job required calling a big wrecker out of Dallas, he said. A second
wrecker also was called.
Justice of the Peace Johnny Adams was one of those who assisted in
directing traffic early Saturday morning.
The scene was finally cleared around 3 p.m. Saturday.
GUN BARREL CITY–A motorcyclist was killed early Saturday morning
along East Main Street in Gun Barrel City.
The motorcyclist, Timothy Whittenberg, 53, of Palestine was riding
westbound along State Highway 334 around 8:30 a.m. when an eastbound
1989 Ford van negotiated a left-hand turn into a driveway at 1406 E.
Apparently the 70-year-old driver, Kemp resident Nathan Shreiner, didn’t
see the motorcyclist.
Neighbor Gregg Zitko was nearby when the accident occurred and rushed in
Zitko, who recently lost his 19-year-old son in a car accident north of
Athens, held Whittenberg as he expired.
Investigator Sgt. Damon Boswell said the angle of the rising sun was a
factor in causing the fatal accident.
Whittenberg was transported to the Emergency Care Center in Gun Barrel
City, where Justice of the Peace Dale Blaylock pronounced him dead.
Today is ‘thank your boss day’
around the country
By Barbara Gartman
Monitor Staff Writer
CEDAR CREEK LAKE–With all the national days, national week and national
month reasons to buy a card or flower, National Boss’ Day pays homage to
Boss’ Day, as it is more commonly known, is the day set aside for
employees to thank their bosses.
The date is also living proof of what one individual can accomplish when
they set their mind to it.
Back in 1958, when Patricia Bays Haroski decided to register “National
Boss’ Day” with the U.S. Chamber of Commerce, she was a secretary for
State Farm Insurance in Deerfield, Ill.
The date she chose, Oct. 16, was her father’s birthday (he also happened
to be her boss).
In 1978, Illinois Gov. Otto Kerner officially proclaimed the day.
In recent years, the date has become an international day, and is
celebrated in countries such as England, Australia and South Africa.
This is the day to let your boss know you are happy to be a part of the
business, and to say a special “thank you” with a card or some other
token of appreciation.
KC public defender cited
with ‘Best Practice’ award
Bidders sought for new Kemp maintenance barn
By Barbara Gartman
Monitor Staff Writer
KAUFMAN–The county’s one-and-a half-year-old Public Defender’s office,
headed by Andrew Jordan, was recently recognized by the Texas
Association of Counties (TAC) with an award.
The Kaufman County Commissioners noted the news at Monday’s regular
The office has saved the county more than $600,000 in indigent defense
costs. Other savings include:
• about $2.8 million for inmate population reductions, and
•another $100,000 in earnings for the county for inmate space rental.
All this in the office’s first year of operation.
Jordan credited the commissioners’ court, especially Precinct 4
Commissioner Jim Deller, whose research helped the county obtain a
$190,000 task force discretionary grant.
The grant allowed Kaufman County to become the first mid-sized county to
establish a public defender’s office. It requires the public defender to
see indigent defendants within 24 hours.
The office has two public defenders, an investigator and a secretary.
“Our staff takes great pride in the fact that the poorest in the county
now has equal access to the justice system, and their rights are as
vigorously protected as the richest,” Jordan said.
The award was presented by TAC ex-officio leadership foundation board
member Roy Orr and TAC field representative Gerald Schroeder.
In other business, commissioners:
• agreed to seek bids to purchase and install a metal building to serve
as the new county maintenance facility for Precinct 4.
In an earlier interview, Deller explained Precinct 4 has outgrown its
existing maintenance shop on Business 175 in downtown Kemp.
“A win-win opportunity has allowed us to have the city of Kemp purchase
the existing facility, and allow the county maintenance to move to a new
location,” Deller said.
“Kemp has given us a letter of intent to purchase the current facility
so that Precinct 4 can proceed with plans to build a new maintenance
facility next to the ECO Station,” he added.
Plans for the new maintenance shop call for a 50x100-foot building
(5,500 square feet), plus a large yard to park equipment, along with a
fuel island and road material storage, Deller explained.
“The target date to move into the new facility is Thursday, Jan. 1,” he
The bids will be closed Thursday, Nov. 13, and be opened at the
commissioners’ regular meeting Monday, Nov. 17.
• agreed to seek bids for an annual road materials contract for the
entire county. Those bids also will close Nov. 13 and be opened Nov. 17.
• acknowledged receipt of the fiscal year 2009 budget for the Kaufman
County Emergency Services District No. 7.
• heard tax assessor/collector Dick Murphy report 96.40 percent of the
taxes both for the general fund and road and bridge fund had been
“This completes the (2008) fiscal year,” he said.
• approved three signatures for the County’s Texas Community Development
The signatories are County Judge Wayne Gent, auditor Hal D. Jones and
treasurer Johnny Countryman.
• proclaimed October as Domestic Violence Awareness Month.
• approved the resale of tax property, Cause Number 68799-86, in the
Slayton Addition, Precinct 4.
• renewed membership in the National Association of Counties, with
annual dues of $1,286.
• paid bills totaling $595,148.59.
Monitor Photo/Barbara Gartman
The Texas Association of Counties (TAC) representatives Gerald Schroeder
(left) and Roy Orr present the Best Practices Award to Kaufman County
public defender Andrew Jordan (right). His office was cited for huge
resulting from bringing justice and due process to indigent inmates in