News

Mon
11
Dec

Crime victims honored at Tree of Angels event

By Roxanne Thompson
Staff Writer
Limestone County crime victims and their families – including one of the latest, that of slain DPS Trooper Damon Allen – were honored at the 13th Annual Tree of Angels Ceremony, held at the courthouse on Tuesday, Dec. 5.
Christmas can be a hard time for those who have been the victims of crime, and no one knows that better than those who work in the County Attorney’s Office, because they continually work with crime victims and their families.
Consequently, County Attorney Roy DeFriend and his associates hold the ceremony each year to remember what the crime victims have gone through and honor their strength and endurance as they move through this difficult time in their lives.
DeFriend opened the evening welcoming those present, reminding them why honoring crime victims is important.

Fri
08
Dec

Commissioners to reconsider burn ban

By Roxanne Thompson
Staff Writer
Limestone County commissioners at their upcoming meeting on Tuesday, Dec. 12, will consider whether or not to keep the burn ban in effect or lift it.
Besides making this decision, the court will interview a second candidate for a new legal representative, decide how to cast their votes in the Appraisal District board election, agree on which new pug mill to buy and make several other decisions on county business.

Fri
08
Dec

Late Trooper’s daughter switches on lights

By Roxanne Thompson
Staff Writer
Leaders of Limestone County and its two largest cities, Groesbeck and Mexia, met at the Old Navasota River Bridge Tuesday, Dec. 5, for the annual Bridge-Lighting Ceremony, and the special guest to turn on the lights was Madison Allen, 8, who was there with her mother, Kasey Allen, and other family members of the late DPS Trooper Damon Allen.
However, with the bridge covered with rust, and concrete portions have many large chunks missing and exposed rebar, there may not be a Bridge-Lighting Ceremony in 2018. The historic bridge on State Hwy. 14, near LCR 402, is scheduled to be rehabilitated by the state in the fall of 2018.
The three entities that care for the bridge – Limestone County, Groesbeck and Mexia – take turns hosting the event. The Bridge-Lighting Ceremony is one of the times the three entities come together in a joint effort, and it is considered a time of rapport and cooperation.

Thu
07
Dec

EDC Executive Director Susan Cates resigns

By Timothy J. O’Malley
Managing Editor

It is not very often anyone gets a call out of the blue and asks if you want to take a job elsewhere. It so happened to Mexia Executive Director Susan Cates the day before Thanksgiving.
“The city manager with the city of Hutto got my name from networking in the economic network community and contacted me the day before Thanksgiving,” said Cates. “They asked me to come the week after Thanksgiving for an interview. We had a great phone conversation about the direction of where Hutto was going and I feel like my experience dovetails loosely with the rapid growth that they are experiencing from the outflow of the Austin metro area. With the rapid population growth and housing growth, my experience from my previous community of Ridge North and my two years of experience here in Mexia, we felt like we had a synergy.”
Late Monday afternoon Cates received a call from the city manager of Hutto.

Thu
07
Dec

Seniors receive accolades for their contributions to county

By Roxanne Thompson
Staff Writer
Dozens of Limestone County’s 65-plus set got together this week to celebrate seniors and their contributions in the Fifth Annual Limestone County Senior Celebration Event.
The free event took place Monday, Dec. 4, at the Mexia Senior Center, on Sherman Street, with Texas A&M AgriLife Extension Agent Gabby Washington coordinating the action and emceeing the event.
There were door prizes, free health checks, refreshments and entertainment to keep the action interesting and moving along.
About 50 door prizes were awarded, meaning virtually everyone attending the Senior Celebration received a prize, like fleece throws, stainless steel drink bottles and canvas back packs.

To read more of this story, pick up a copy of Thursday's edition of The Mexia News. Subscribe online or call 254-562-2868.

Thu
07
Dec

LCDC: progress slow but positive

By Roxanne Thompson
Staff Writer
Progress on getting the Limestone County Detention Center, which is the county-owned prison, running with high numbers again continues to move slowly, though in the right direction.
Warden Richard Alford, with LaSalle Corrections, the company that runs the prison for the county, reported to county commissioners at their Nov. 28 meeting on the number of inmates he has and how many he expects to have soon. He also spoke on improvements that have been made recently and requests for prison beds.
Currently the prison has 197 inmates, Alford said, and is populated primarily with offenders being held for Johnson and Eckerd counties. He also has a few from Galveston County, but said that county is no longer seeking the LCDC’s assistance.
Alford said he was scheduled to receive 20 more inmates that day, which would put the inmate count at 217.

Mon
04
Dec

Commissioners interview first candidate for new legal rep

By Roxanne Thompson
Staff Writer
Limestone County commissioners learned more Georgetown attorney George Hyde in their first interview of a candidate for new legal representation.
Their interaction took place at the Nov. 28 commissioners court meeting and lasted more than half an hour. Hyde gave examples of cases in which his firm had successfully represented various Texas counties and also spoke of his view of the attorney-client relationship.
County Judge Daniel Burkeen reminded the court that Hyde had already represented the county on an insurance case because he is on the Texas Association of Counties’ list of approved attorneys.
Hyde told the court that he had dedicated his law practice to the representation of local government.
“Having been a 25-year commissioned police officer and a six-year firefighter, both in volunteer as well as regular positions, I understand a little bit of the inside of what they go through,” Hyde said.

Mon
04
Dec

Mexia Christmas parade continues beloved tradition

By Roxanne Thompson
Staff Writer
Christmas came early in Mexia, with Santa and many floats and trailers riding through downtown on Thursday, Nov. 30, in the city’s annual lighted, night-time Christmas parade.
The event was led by parade marshals Dick and Linda Flatt, who were this year’s Mr. and Mrs. Mistletoe.
Also near the front of the parade were Limestone County Sheriff Dennis Wilson riding the hood of Deputy Emonty Means’ Tahoe; and Mexia Mayor Richard Duncan driving his red 1969 Ford Mustang Mach I.
A contingent of Boy Scouts from Troop 70 carried the U.S., Texas and Troop flags, and the Mexia High School Marching Blackcat Band soon followed, playing the school’s familiar fight song.
The winning parade entries were as follows: First place went to the Wortham High School Choir, with its members sitting in a blue-and-white themed trailer decorated with tiny Christmas lights and big snowflakes.

Fri
01
Dec

County discusses details of Trooper’s funeral

By Roxanne Thompson
Staff Writer
Limestone County commissioners covered several matters concerning the funeral of DPS Trooper Damon Allen, who was on the mind of many in the county since Allen was shot and killed on Thanksgiving Day during a traffic stop.
The court discussed these matters at their Nov. 28 meeting, when the commissioners also interviewed the first of three legal representatives they are considering to represent the county; got updates on the county-owned prison and Fairgrounds, and took care of other county business.
As for the funeral of Trooper Allen, who had often worked at the courthouse, since so many county employees knew Allen, County Judge Daniel Burkeen said that those offices that wanted to close to allow their employees to attend the funeral could do so if the commissioners had no objections, which they did not.

Fri
01
Dec

Volunteers make bows to line Trooper Allen’s funeral route

By Roxanne Thompson
Staff Writer
The Mexia Civic Center was filled with volunteers, tables and what seemed like miles of ribbon Wednesday, as people of the community came together to make big blue bows to line the funeral procession of DPS Trooper Damon Allen Friday.
In the wake of Allen’s shooting death on Thanksgiving Day, many Mexia residents have expressed sadness, distress and a desire to do something to at least show their love and care for the man and his family.
The idea for making bows to line the funeral route originated with Trudy Cain, who saw Allen’s patrol car lovingly covered with bows at the Freestone County courthouse for a prayer vigil last Sunday.
“When I saw the Trooper car with the bows,” Cain said, “immediately I thought, ‘Well, we need to do that here.’ I saw his car parked on the highway, and I thought, ‘He’s our hometown boy; we’ve got to do something if we can honor him.’”

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