News

Fri
02
Aug

Memorial service honors fallen MPD officer Ward


Guests, including these two state troopers, salute the flag raised at half-staff as a trumpeter plays “Taps” during Friday’s memorial service for Mexia PD Officer Ricky Ward, who was killed on duty 20 years ago. Mexia News photo/Brenda Sommer

By Brenda Sommer
Managing Editor

Speakers remembered “gentle giant” Ricky Ward at a memorial service Friday, 20 years to the day the Mexia police officer was killed in the line of duty.

The memorial was held in front of the police department to honor the sacrifice of Ward, who died Aug. 2, 1993 at the age of 33.

County Judge Daniel Burkeen and Sheriff Dennis Wilson were among those who spoke to the crowd of about 60.

“He lives in our minds and hearts as a hero,” Wilson said, also discussing the way myriad law enforcement agencies came together to capture Ward’s killer.

To read more, pick up a copy of Saturday's Mexia News, or subscribe to our e-edition.

Fri
02
Aug

Summer in Mexia a time for vacation Bible school


Vacation Bible school students work on constructing scarecrows with their arts and craft supplies at Mexia’s St. Luke United Methodist Church last week. Shown here, from left and going clockwise, are Kamiyah Pritchett, 7, Trynity Hicks, 8, Ty Strong, 8, Makayla Banks, 7, Kiara Busby, 8, Devon West, 8, Jordan Banks, 6, (obscured), and Amauri Smith, 7. See more photos on Page 8. Mexia News photo/Roxanne McKnight

By Roxanne McKnight
Staff Writer

St. Luke United Methodist Church, of Mexia, revived its vacation Bible school this summer after a hiatus of many years.

Vacation Bible school, a common activity in Christian churches, usually consists of four or five days of fun activities with a religious theme held during the summer months for children from kindergarten through at least fifth grade, if not higher.

St. Luke UMC held its VBS last week, Monday through Friday, July 22-26, with the help of volunteers from the congregation: teachers Mary Burns, Lavonda McCrary, Darron Collins and Jackie Smith; and aides Rosie Durham, Brittney Jones, Mariyah Wiley and Myron Thompson.

To read more, pick up a copy of Saturday's Mexia News, or subscribe to our e-edition.

Fri
02
Aug

ACLU warns MISD against drug testing for all

By Brenda Sommer
Managing Editor

The American Civil Liberties Union of Texas has sent a four-page letter to Mexia ISD and its board of trustees, outlining its concerns about a proposed change to the district‘s drug-testing policy.

The letter, dated Aug. 1, lays out a number of court rulings the ACLU believes don’t allow for the kind of policy the Mexia ISD board has discussed implementing over the course of several meetings.

The district’s board is currently considering a policy to test all junior high and high school students for drug usage, and include all of them in the pool of those considered for random testing.

Currently, the district randomly tests 40 students a month, names chosen randomly from a pool consisting of junior high and high school students who either take part in extracurricular activities, or drive on campus.

Wed
31
Jul

Limestone’s Wilson elected 3rd VP of state sheriff group


Dennis D. Wilson Limestone County Sheriff

Limestone County Sheriff Dennis D. Wilson has been elected Third Vice President of the Sheriffs’ Association of Texas.
His selection took place at the organization’s 135th Annual Training Conference, held in Corpus Christi, July 20-23.

Sheriff Wilson has been the sheriff of Limestone County since January 2001. He is serving and has served in various state-level leadership positions in Limestone County and throughout the state.

Wilson attended the conference with Limestone County’s Chief Deputy Sheriff R.T .Beck.

Wilson will be sworn in as president of the Sheriffs’ Association of Texas at the 139th Annual Training Conference.

Wed
31
Jul

Gala a chance to improve MSSLC residents’ lives


Cheryl Cockrell and her assistant Robin Green, with the Mexia State Supported Living Center Volunteer Council, chat with members of the Mexia Lions Club and sell tickets to the Aug. 10 gala fundraiser to benefit MSSLC residents. Mexia News photo/Roxanne McKnight

By Roxanne McKnight
Staff Writer

Though residents at the Mexia State Supported Living Center have their most basic needs met, compassionate people in and around Mexia and Limestone County agreed more than 50 years ago that they needed to do something to make the residents’ lives better. So, they founded the Volunteer Council to provide the extra things of life that go a long way to doing just that for MSSLC residents.

Making that happen, however, costs money, so fundraising is vital to fulfilling the goals. Cheryl Cockrell, community liaison for the Mexia State Supported Living Center, spoke to the Mexia Lions Club recently on the Volunteer Council’s biggest fundraiser, its annual gala and auction, which is coming up Saturday evening, Aug. 10. Doors open at 5:30, and the gala starts at 6. Tickets are $25 and are being sold now for the event, which will be held at the Christian Life Center at First Baptist Church.

Wed
31
Jul

Raining kids and dogs

Zoe, a pet pit bull, tries in vain to catch water thrown into the air by playful kids staying cool on a hot summer afternoon. Shown here, from left, are Kaden Quimby, 4, his sister, Leela, 8, and their cousin Emrys Goodnight, 8.
Mexia News photo/Roxanne McKnight

Wed
31
Jul

City ready to roll out new trash cart service


Monday Pink area, including the north side of Milam Tuesday Yellow area, including the south side of East Milam, east side of McKinney and north side of Tyler Thursday Green area, including the south side of West Milam, west side of McKinney, and south side of Tyler

By Brenda Sommer
Managing Editor

Delivery of carts for the new city trash service started Monday morning and most homes should have theirs by today, according to Allied Waste, the city of Mexia’s trash service provider.

The carts are being delivered first to the city of Mexia property on South Belknap then are being deployed to residences from there. Service using the carts begins Monday, Aug. 5.

Mexia City Council approved the transition to the standardized containers in March, citing especially concerns about trash falling out of trucks and trash left in plastic bags, which are then torn open and the waste scattered by loose animals.

Currently, trash is left on the curb in bags. Existing cages and platforms homeowners have built for trash bags or cans need to be removed from the city right of way once the new service starts Aug. 5.

Mon
29
Jul

New FUMC pastor wants Methodists to reconnect


Mexia FUMC’s new pastor Danny Niedecken is already hard at work in his new post. He and his wife bought land near Mexia eight years ago, so his assignment here is a fortunate circumstance. Mexia News photo/Roxanne McKnight

By Roxanne McKnight
Staff Writer

Mexia’s new First United Meth­odist pastor, Danny Niedecken, has a simple message for Mexia’s Meth­odists: Come back and get reconnected.

Niedecken and his wife, Gretchen, moved here in June, but they’ve had a connection to Mexia for nearly a decade. Eight years ago, they bought land near Lake Mexia with an eye to retiring there someday, and two years ago they built a home on their property. When authorities in the Methodist conference asked Niedecken to come pastor in Mexia, it seemed like the right next step.

“Lo and behold, this year we get moved here and we get to live in our own house,” he said recently. “A lot of things in (the move) are providential that we didn’t plan on and have worked out very well.”

They have another tie to this area in that one of their four grown children is a physician in Groesbeck.

To read more, pick up a copy of Tuesday's Mexia News, or subscribe to our e-edition.

Mon
29
Jul

County tweaks LCDC bed price to save jobs

By Roxanne McKnight
Staff Writer

Though the Limestone County Detention Center is virtually closed since it has no inmates, county officials say they are looking for a new source of inmates. At last Monday’s meeting, commissioners took care of various LCDC business, heard about a power outage at the Fairgrounds and considered switching to off-road diesel to save money.

County Judge Daniel Burkeen expressed confidence in finding a new source of inmates, saying they are working on problem.
“People need to understand it’s an up-and-down business all the time,” he said. “This has happened before; it’s the end of the budget year. We will (get inmates); it’s just a matter of finding them sooner rather than later. The new federal budget kicks in, in October. Immigration legislation is pending; that’ll call for more beds. So, there’s a lot of good possibilities. It’s just a matter of trying to minimize the down time.”

Fri
26
Jul

County picks winners of annual bids

Limestone County commissioners determined the winners of the annual bids at Monday’s meeting.
Annual bids are requested by the county on items used in large quantities so a cost savings may be realized by ordering in bulk. The following items and bids were voted on:
Oil and sand mixing – one bid was received, from Material Resources, which is the company currently providing that material.
“They actually dropped their price by 70 cents (per ton),” said County Engineer Ted Kantor, who also directs the county’s Road and Bridge Department.
The bid was approved.
Bridge lumber – bids were received from Conroe Wood Products and Lufkin Creosoting. Conroe was cheaper, and the court approved its bid.

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