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Posts published in April 2003

METRO to host community meetings on new mobility plan


ALDINE– Metro spokesman Art Murillo pointed out in a report to ACID last Tuesday night, that the Houston area population will grow by 2 million persons in the next 20 years, and all of those may be driving in your roadway. This potential jam could be avoided, if METRO implements its long range Mobility Plan.

The public will get an opportunity to see this plan and comment on it, in a series of public meetings around the city. In the Aldine area, a meeting is scheduled for May 15th, from 6 to 8 pm at MacArthur High School, according to Murillo.

The plan consists of a mix of Light Rail, Bus Rapid Transit, (Guided Track), HOV lanes that will be designed for 2-way use, and Connectivity to existing lines at Transit Centers.

Murillo pointed out that the real issue is quality of life, which it affected by mobility. Crafted over 18 months with community input and expert analysis, METRO Solutions examined several high-traffic corridors including 1-45 North/Hardy; Southeast-Universities-Hobby; Uptown-West Loop; Katy Freeway; Harrisburg; Tomball-State Highway 249; State Highway 288; and Westpark.The studies considered a variety of transportation options, depending on the location, such as bus, bus rapid transit, light rail, commuter rail and HOV lines.

After further technical and financial analysis, along with community comments1 the final plan will be presented to the METRO Board in June and considered for formal adoption in July.

Community meetings to present the METRO Solutions Draft Plan will be held at the following locations:

• 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. Monday, May 5 – METRO Headquarters, 1201 Louisiana, 16th Floor Board Room

• 6 to 8 p.m. Tuesday, May 6 – Kashmere Multi Service Center, 4802 Lockwood, and Bleyl Middle School, 10800 Mills Road

• 6 to 8 p.m. Wednesday May 7 – Hobby Hilton, 8181 Airport Blvd.

• 6 to 8 p.m. Thursday, May 8 – Sunnyside Multi Service Center, 4805 Wilmington, and The Power Center, 12401 S. Post Oak Road

• 6 to 8 p.m. Monday, May 12 – Acres Homes Multi Service Center, 6719 West Montgomery, and Southern Chinese Daily News Building, 11122 Bellaire Blvd.

• 6 to 8 p.m. Tuesday, May 13 – Houston-Galveston Area Council, 3555 Timmons Lane, 2nd Floor, Conference Room A

• 6 to 8 p.m. Wednesday, May 14 – NCI Ripley House, 4410 Navigation, and The Courtyard by Marriott, 12401 Katy Freeway

• 6 to 8 p.m. Thursday, May 15 – MacArthur High School, 4400 Aldine Mail Route Road, and Spring Branch Community Center, 8575 Pitner

• 6 to 8 p.m. Monday, May 19 – Greenspoint Mall, Community Room, 12300 North Freeway, Suite 200

Each meeting will include a 30-minute presentation of the METRO Solutions Draft Plan and a 30-minute question and answer period, preceded by and concluding with a 30-minute “open house.”

All meetings will be held in wheelchair-accessible locations. People requiring language interpretation or special communication accommodations may contact the project’s public participation coordinator at 713-739.6049 at least 72 hours prior to the meeting.
For bus route and schedule information, call METROLine at 713-635-4000 or visit www.ride

I remember…

I hope you all had a happy Easter and spent time with family and friends. I had a new addition to the family on Easter mornin’…..a fine little stud colt born to “I’m Shameless”, his proud momma. We haven’t chosen a name yet, but favor something like “Toby’s Anthem”, after Toby Keith’s Song of the Year, “American Anthem”. His momma, I’m Shameless, was named after a Garth Brook’s song by the same name, so…

I’m really excited about the Cowboy Ranch Competition at the George Ranch on May 3rd and 4th. I’ve told you all about it, but will mention it again. Your whole family will have a ball if you take the short forty minute drive to the first exit after you cross the Brazos River on 59 South, go to your left about eight miles and it’s on your right, you can’t miss it. There will be real chuckwagon cooking with gooood food, lots of cowboy stuff for the kids and, and, a team competition for workin’ cowboys you won’t wanta miss!

Well, I was discussing the upcoming book and CD, titled “I Remember”, when my better half asked me if I remembered the old movies with the singin’ cowboys? You bet I did! You probably guessed it, I wrote a poem about it! To make a long story short, we decided to introduce this new one to a few close friends, like you all! So, you are the first to read this new one. Hope you like it!

The Silver Screen

The names I seem to remember best,
from when I was a kid,
Are now the stuff of legends telling, of
the daring deeds they did.
T.V. wasn’t the way at first, we saw our
heroes then.
The Silver Screen on Saturdays, was
where it all began.
A nickel or dime was entrance fee, a
coke a nickel more.
And our feet would always stick, on that
gooey movie floor.
The guys would always laugh and talk,
then the lights were turned down low.
To signal all was to begin soon, the start
of our favorite shows.

The serial was continued from last week.
Could the hero come back again?
And if he was dumb enough to kiss the
girl, all of us would grin.
Now was time for the western to start,
we all could hardly wait.
Then Dale and Roy and Trigger were
there, ridin’ through the gate.
And Roy was oh so smooth, as he sang a
cowboy song.
We kids knew every single word, so we
would sing along.
Next week it might be Hoppalong, or the
Cisco Kid.
Everyone really loved those guys, and
the daring deeds they did.
Gene Autry was a favorite, and
Champion his trusty steed.
When he told us to follow “The Cowboy
Code”, we were quick to heed.
The Lone Ranger with Tonto his trusted
friend, kept us glued there in our seats.
They may have been my favorites, I
dreamed someday we’d meet!
His silver bullets never failed, to find the
bad guys hearts.
Many ran when they heard his name,
headin’ for other parts.
John Wayne, The Duke some called him,
fought for right in every show.
Another of our cowboy heroes, pointing
the way to go.
Now a Silver Screen’s in every home,
both here and in far off lands.
But some have never seen those guys,
ridin’ cross the sands.
I think it’s time we brought them back,
those heroes from long ago,
And they would straighten out the world,
the right way they would show.
And we could all be kids again, knowing
who was really bad and mean,
The world would be a better place again,
if we had that “Silver Screen”!

I gotta go check on “Toby” and his momma. You can come if you want to, but please, now especially, shut the gate!

Just a Ridin’,

ACID hears report on water & sewers

According to a report this week to the Aldine CID, progress continues to be made on the long term study of water and sewer needs in the Aldine District, and plans to provide a comprehensive system in the future.

Water Engineers, Inc. has a consulting contract with ACID to study options, and develop a plan. This work was reviewed last Tuesday night by engineer Ray Young. The study is expected to be completed by the end of the year.

The intent of the study is to find the best way to implement adequate water and sewer services to the 11,000 households in the Aldine district, including using existing facilities, coordinating with the City of Houston, and building new utilities.

See Accompanying Story and Maps on Page 3 of this NORTHEAST NEWS issue.

Thoughts of an Old Georgia Boy

Could not work in the backyard yesterday like I had planned. Had to take the Mrs. for a ride to keep her happy, she told me the backyard work will be there tomorrow. Guess she got tired of sitting on the front porch and watching cars go by. There was a time when I did that at my grand folks place on Liberty Hill Road; you could hear a car coming for a long way from that house on a hill.

The Mrs. wanted to go see the bluebonnets and all the other wild flowers in the hill country around the Chappel Hill area. We made a slow wide loop admiring not only the flowers but also the layout of the land. Some places you could see way off for miles and the rolling hills were so pretty, clear blue sky with a little breeze.

Took notice of a lot of buzzards flying the thermals out that direction. By one large pond I noticed more than a dozen in the air and on shore by the pond was I’d bet over 30 or more. That has got to be their roosting area.

One of my buddies was telling me of them finding a buzzard’s roost when they were growing up in Del Rio. Said they came under the birds at night and disturbed them. He said the buzzards threw up on them. You know it is against the law to kill them. I have heard before of them doing that if you mess with them. Believe me, I know better.

Saw one nice spread while riding around, it too was on a hill off the winding road with a fenced in field that had a couple of little burrows frolicking around. I made a comment to the Mrs. that I would like to have something like that one day and a couple of the little jackasses. She looked at me like I was crazy but I would like two. I already have a couple of nice names for them when the time comes.

Noticed lots of cardinals and dove on this trip and I did see two-dogwood trees but no kudzu, or poke salad. Lots of dewberries in blossom also. The question came up about why people never tried to domesticate the cardinal, they re so pretty.

I did the driving and one would have thought she had brakes over in the passenger seat. She got right testy with me telling me not to say anything about her driving. I love it when she talks dirty to me.

From the Chappel Hill sausage to Houston’s Hickory Hollow BBQ chicken fried steak yesterday; the old gout is pounding in the big right toe today. Rich foods like that tear me up. Guess you could say I like it but it doesn’t like me.

Easter is this coming weekend then standby for a slow shift from nice weather to near hot to hot and it’ll be that way for the next five to six months.

Semper Paratus.

Lembcke, Marks selected as AISD’s top teachers

Deborah J. Lembcke was named Aldine ISD’s Elementary/Intermediate Teacher of the Year, while Leslie B. Marks was named the district’s Secondary Teacher of the Year during AISD’s Teacher of the Year Breakfast, held April 4 at the Sheraton North Houston Hotel.

Lembcke, who teaches first grade at Odom Elementary, and Marks, who teaches French at Shotwell Middle School, were two of six finalists chosen for the prestigious award by a committee of fellow teachers, administrators and community members.

The four other finalists were Chaiwat Rodsuwan of Bethune Academy, Michelle Schroeder of Anderson Academy, Donna Andrich of Teague Middle School and Curtis L. Wood of Eisenhower Senior High School.

Lembcke and Marks, along with the semifinalists and each campus teacher of the year, were also honored by a number of businesses in the Greenspoint area who provided gifts for the two winners and the others.

Continental Airlines presented Lembcke and Marks each with a round trip airfare to anywhere Continental flies in the continental United States. Lincoln Properties presented each of the winners with $200, and the semi-finalists with $100 each. Halliburton presented each of the winners $500, while the Aldine Teachers Credit Union provided $200 each to Lembcke and Marks. Apartment Directors provided gift certificates to the six finalists, while the Sheraton North Houston Hotel provided the four semi-finalists with a weekend get away package. Outback Steakhouse presented all of the campus Teachers of the Year with a gift certificate, while Gallery Furniture provided a duffle bag full of goodies to all 59 campus Teachers of the Year.

The two winners and four semi-finalists also received gift certificates and prizes from Greenspoint Mall to be used at department stores and specialty stores in the mall.

Lembcke said she sees her role as a teacher as that of one who directs her students in their drive to reach academic achievement.

“Outstanding educators map out where they want their students to be at the end of the year,” she said. “They look at the individual child and help them become problem solvers. They welcome their entire classroom with equal enthusiasm. For them, working with young learners and sharing in their excitement, achievements and wonder is magical.”

Marks said teachers must be well rounded to prepare students for the challenges they will face in the future.

“Outstanding teachers must have patience, a true love of the subject they are teaching, a genuine desire to fill children with knowledge and information necessary for them to be successful in the 21st century,” she said. “Outstanding teachers must enjoy working with children and readily accept them for who they are and what they bring to the classroom.”

Prior to the naming of the six finalists, each of the district’s building Teachers of the Year were introduced by their campus principals.
Joining Lembcke, Marks and the four semi-finalists at the breakfast were:

Debra A. Jones of Aldine Middle School, Akilah A. Walker Willery of Aldine Ninth Grade School, Wendy D. Harris of Aldine Senior High School, Vickie Marie Thompson of AEPC (Alternative Education Place Center), Tamisha D. Higgins of Black Elementary School, Sharon Denise Hicks of Calvert Elementary School, Debbie A. Mullone of Caraway Intermediate School, Kathleen A. Mitchell of Carmichael Elementary School, Elena J. Johnson of Carroll Academy, Kimberly A. Pruitt of Carter Academy and Regidor L. Tanig of Carver High School.

Other building Teachers of the Year were: Jodi C. Crofford of Conley Elementary School, Donna J. Blackney of deSantiago EC/Pre-K Center, Deborah C. Fields-Harris of Drew Academy, Sheryl A. Alvarez of Dunn Elementary School, Mason A. Kuhn of Eckert Intermediate School, Kimberly Encalade of Magrill Elementary School, Kasha L. Reece of Mendel Elementary School, Meredith Smith of Nimitz Ninth Grade School, Deborah Jesse Barker of Nimitz Senior High School and Karen Baxter of Northwest Intermediate School.

Also honored were Fran L. Williams of Eisenhower Ninth Grade School, Kim K. Williams of Ermel Elementary School, John E. Wilson of Escamilla Intermediate School, Suni S. Thompson of Francis Elementary School, Jennifer L. McCracken of Goodman Elementary School, Zannavia Y. Ray-Willpitz of Grantham Academy, Beverly J. Campbell of Gray Elementary School, Refugio A. Rodriquez of Hambrick Middle School, Lara I. Egolinsky of Harris Academy, Maria Mapula Gonzales of Hinojosa EC/Pre-K Center, Carolyn Marie Milton of Hoffman Middle School, Traci L. Carballo of Johnson Elementary School, Norma E. Carachure of Keeble EC/Pre-K Center, Stacey A. Herring of Lane School, Tim Timpani of MacArthur Ninth Grade School and Aquilla T. Aubrey of MacArthur Senior High School.

Others honored were: Gayla J. Landrum of Oleson Elementary School, Connie Reimer-Cobb of Orange Grove Elementary School, Juergen “Carl” Mueller of Parker Intermediate School, April T. Lawles of Raymond Academy, Monica L. Lewis of Reece Academy, Diane R. Hudson of Reed Academy, Lillian A. Grimm of Sammons Elementary School, Rhonda D. Merriweather of Smith Academy, Stephen B. Bedford of Stehlik Intermediate School, Dea’Vanca Simon of Stephens Elementary School, Karen D. Love-All Griffen of Stovall Middle School, Julie A. DeKovic of Stovall Academy, Rosetta R. Simpson of Thompson Elementary School, Martha I Valbuena of Vines EC/Pre-K Center, Robert A. Jones of Wilson Intermediate School and April S. Montague of Worsham Elementary School.

Linda Scott, program director of elementary science, chaired the Teacher of the Year committee.

Aldine ISD election voting starts this week

By P.J. Williams

Early voting for Aldine ISD School Board trustees elections begins Tuesday April 16th and runs through April 29th. Early ballots can be cast weekdays from 8AM to 4PM at the M.B. Sonny Donaldson Aldine ISD Administration Building at 14910 Aldine-Westfield. The deadline for applications for ballot by mail is April 25. The regular election day is May 3.

The AISD School Board consists of seven at-large positions with three year terms. The candidates for position 3 are Sidney Brewer and incumbent Leonard W. Marcella. Running for position 4 are Joseph l. Nailor and incumbent Rick Ogden. The three candidates running for position 5 are incumbent Carlos Diaz, Steve Mead, and Maurice Parker.

Incumbent Marcella, position 3, is the secretary of the board -said, “I am running for the benefit of the children to get them the best education for the money we have.” Marcella’s wife works at Nimitz High School and his three children graduated from Aldine schools. “We’re an Aldine family all the way,” Marcella said.

Position 3 challenger Sidney Brewer described himself as a concerned parent with two children in the district and one who just graduated. He said, “I just want to keep the district moving up. With the onset of federal and state cut backs there will be changes, and I want to see that those changes are for the best.”

Position 4 incumbent Rick Ogden served on the AISD School Board for the last 13 years and is president of the Association of School Boards. He said, “We have a great leadership team who have created a framework for our children to succeed academically, and I feel my work is not done.” His four children are graduates of Aldine High School.

Challenger Joseph L. Nailor is a 14 year resident of Aldine. He could not be reached for comment by press time.

Position 5 incumbent Carlos Diaz taught Texas History at Aldine Middle School for two years and was an assistant football and track coach there. Diaz said, “We worked over the last 8-9 years, while I’ve been on the board, to raise the test scores overall, but especially with minorities. I’m there for the children. I want to make sure they get the best education possible.” Diaz has two children who attend Anderson Academy and two more who are destined for Aldine schools.

Position 5 challenger Steve Mead is a 52 year Aldine resident who went through all levels of Aldine schools. Mead is active in the community as secretary of the Aldine Community Improvement District (ACID), president of the Aldine Optimist Club, former president of Aldine YOUTH and RFPD #24 (Aldine Fire and Rescue), and a member of the Aldine Scholarship Foundation and Aldine FFA buyer’s group. Mead said, “I want to be a board member who goes out to talk to teachers to see what teachers are looking for and what parents are looking for. I want to make sure everyone is treated fairly. Any decision I make will be an honest decision for the benefit of everyone.” Mead’s three children went all the way through Aldine schools, North Harris College, and University of Houston.

Position 5 challenger Maurice Parker’s two main concerns are the challenge of future budget issues and TAAS scores. “There are 20 percent who didn’t pass TAAS and that’s my concern. Eighty percent is not good enough,” he said. Parker’s solution is to check out other programs. “We need to find ways to reach students on their level. It means being creative and giving teachers more autonomy and let them do what they do. That’s teach,” he said.

Ley Road Shopkeeper dies after confrontation with shoplifter

A local owner of a service station in the 7900 block of Ley Road died at Ben Taub hospital after suffering a beating from a patron who was allegedly caught in the act of shoplifting candy.

Young An, 53, was in his gas station last Thursday evening, about 9:00 pm, when Emory Carter, 36, entered the store and put some candy in his pocket. When challenged by An, he struck him in the face, severly injuring him.

Carter, the alleged perpetrator, is being sought on a charge of aggravated assault with serious bodily injury, but this will probably be upgraded to murder, according to police.

Anyone with information is requested to call the police department at 713-308-3600 or Crime Stoppers at 713-222-TIPS.

Police search for missing truck after stabbing death on Grenfell

Houston police are investigating the death of a man found at 218 Grenfell about 2 p.m. on Friday, April 11, 2003.

Homicide Division Sergeant H.G. Welch and Officer D.D. Snow reported family members of Larry Joe Simpson, 58, found him dead in his home. He appeared to have numerous stab wounds. His 2003 blue Dodge pickup truck, license 7WT- W34, is missing.

Anyone with information about this case is urged to contact the Houston Police Department Homicide Division at (713) 308-3600 or Crime Stoppers at (713) 222-TIPS.