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Tyler County Booster - Local News
Stories Added - May 2009
Copyright 2008 - Polk Count
y Publishing Company

Remember Memorial Day May 25
Tyler County Booster - May 2009
Hot, rainy, cool, showers, warm, overcast – all these words describe the weather we have been having lately. I am glad to say that the weather has not prevented any group who had reservations from coming out to the Village. Our tours continue with Orangefield Elementary on the 19th and Brandon Elementary from Lufkin on the 22nd. This coming Monday, May 25th, we will celebrate Memorial Day across the states. This holiday was formerly known as Decoration Day and it was celebrated at various times during the year according to the location. It was a time set aside to decorate the graves of soldiers who had died in service to their country.

The women in the South were honoring their war dead before the end of the Civil War. General John Logan, commander of the Grand Army of the Republic, is generally credited with establishing the date of May 30th for the observance when by his order flowers were placed on the graves of all Union and Confederate soldiers in Arlington Cemetery on May 30, 1968. The date was chosen because that was not the anniversary of any battle. Along the way the designation was changed from Decoration Day to Memorial Day. The movement grew throughout the states and the May 30th date was used by most states until June 1968 when Congress passed the Uniform Holidays Bill changing three holidays to a specific Monday allowing a three day holiday. The law took effect in 1971.

This law caused Memorial Day to be celebrated on the last Monday in May. In 1915, the poet Moira Michael who had been inspired by the poem, “In Flanders Fields, wrote the following: We cherish too, the Poppy red That grows on fields where valor led, It seems to signal to the skies That blood of heroes never dies. Remember Memorial Day May 25 www.easttexasnews.comOpinionsince 2005 to make school supplies more affordable for Texas families, and I am pleased that through a bi-partisan effort we are about to make that a reality.” Rep. Dwayne Bohac, R-Houston, is coauthor of the bill. The state comptroller’s office estimates that those who purchase clothing and school supplies during the upcoming sales tax holiday would save a total of $9.5 million in sales taxes if HB 1801 passes. Senate passes stem cell measure The state Senate on May 14 approved a bill intended to help lawmakers determine the extent of stem cell research being performed by state agencies. SB 2573 by Sen. Steve Ogden, R-Bryan, would require all state agencies involved in biomedical research to submit a report detailing any research involving stem cells or human cloning.

State representative hospitalized Rep. Edmund Kuempel, R-Seguin, was found collapsed in a state Capitol elevator on May 12, after suffering an apparent heart attack. Rep. John Zerwas, R-Houston, a physician, and Texas Department of Public Safety officers, rendered first aid on the spot. Kuempel was transported to an Austin hospital where he was put into a medically induced coma as part of ongoing treatment. Kuempel, 66, is chairman of the House Committee on Licensing and Administrative Procedure. Texas remembers fallen officers On May 15, Peace Officer Memorial Day, state Capitol Complex flags were flown at half staff in memory of fallen police officers. The day is part of National Police Week. Human Services chief retires Texas Health and Human Services Commissioner Albert Hawkins announced his retirement after a 35-year career in state government. Hawkins, head of the agency since January 2003, earlier served as a senior White House aide to then-President George W. Bush. From 1995 to 2000 he was governor’s office budget director for then-Gov. Bush. Before that, Hawkins was an employee of the state Legislative Budget Board for 16 years.

Parks & Wildlife cancels Expo Carter Smith, executive director of the Texas Parks & Wildlife Department, announced that the Texas Parks and Wildlife Expo scheduled for Oct. 3-4 has been canceled and plans for the 2010 Expo have been suspended. Smith said costs of putting on the events previously were underwritten by sponsors, but sponsorship has been adversely affected by the economic downturn. AG charges telemarketing firms Texas Attorney General Greg Abbott on May 14 charged three telemarketing firms with participating in an illegal scheme to sell vehicle service contracts that were falsely marketed as extended warranties. Two California-based telemarketing firms, SCM Media Inc. and On Point Media Inc., along with a Nevada company, Pacific Guard Warranty LLC, are named defendants in the state’s enforcement action. Ms. Mitchell conceived the idea of wearing a red poppy on Memorial Day and she was the first one to do so.

The idea spread and in 1922 the VFW became the first national organization to sell poppies to commemorate our fallen heroes. You might be interested in knowing that the “National Moment of Remembrance” resolution was passed in Dec 2000 which asks that at 3 p.m. local time, for all Americans “To voluntarily and informally observe in their own way a Moment of remembrance and respect, pausing from whatever they are doing for a moment of silence or listening to ‘Taps.” At this writing it is too early to know what national plans are being made to celebrate this special day. You might want to begin your own celebration in your neighborhood with a service including names of fallen heroes who have given so much for us.

At the very least take a moment to pause at 3:00 p.m. to remember those that you knew who are no longer here. It also seems to me that for a number of years Memorial Day has also been used to remember all deceased loved ones and not just service personnel. At Heritage Village we have a small cemetery with the names of people we remember who have been very special in the life of the Village. It is located beside Cherokee Church. Be sure to stop by and visit the next time you are at the Village. Memorial Day might be a good time for a visit. The Village will be open and so will the Pickett House for your holiday dining pleasure.


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