Category: America



This is a MUST see!  Great job kids!

 


No matter your political leanings, an American President was assassinated on this day in 1963.

The 35th President of the United States, John F. Kennedy was murdered exactly 50 years ago today.

The Announcement by Walter Cronkite is etched into the memory of a generation.

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2013 run smallThank a Veteran and Fly Your Flag Tomorrow!

History of Veterans Day

World War I – known at the time as “The Great War” – officially ended when the Treaty of Versailles was signed on June 28, 1919, in the Palace of Versailles outside the town of Versailles, France. However, fighting ceased seven months earlier when an armistice, or temporary cessation of hostilities, between the Allied nations and Germany went into effect on the eleventh hour of the eleventh day of the eleventh month. For that reason, November 11, 1918, is generally regarded as the end of “the war to end all wars.”

Soldiers of the 353rd Infantry near a church at Stenay, Meuse in France.

Soldiers of the 353rd Infantry near a church at Stenay, Meuse in France, wait for the end of hostilities.  This photo was taken at 10:58 a.m., on November 11, 1918, two minutes before the armistice ending World War I went into effect

In November 1919, President Wilson proclaimed November 11 as the first commemoration of Armistice Day with the following words: “To us in America, the reflections of Armistice Day will be filled with solemn pride in the heroism of those who died in the country’s service and with gratitude for the victory, both because of the thing from which it has freed us and because of the opportunity it has given America to show her sympathy with peace and justice in the councils of the nations…”

The original concept for the celebration was for a day observed with parades and public meetings and a brief suspension of business beginning at 11:00 a.m.

The United States Congress officially recognized the end of World War I when it passed a concurrent resolution on June 4, 1926, with these words:

Whereas the 11th of November 1918, marked the cessation of the most destructive, sanguinary, and far reaching war in human annals and the resumption by the people of the United States of peaceful relations with other nations, which we hope may never again be severed, and

Whereas it is fitting that the recurring anniversary of this date should be commemorated with thanksgiving and prayer and exercises designed to perpetuate peace through good will and mutual understanding between nations; and

Whereas the legislatures of twenty-seven of our States have already declared November 11 to be a legal holiday: Therefore be it Resolved by the Senate (the House of Representatives concurring), that the President of the United States is requested to issue a proclamation calling upon the officials to display the flag of the United States on all Government buildings on November 11 and inviting the people of the United States to observe the day in schools and churches, or other suitable places, with appropriate ceremonies of friendly relations with all other peoples.

An Act (52 Stat. 351; 5 U. S. Code, Sec. 87a) approved May 13, 1938, made the 11th of November in each year a legal holiday—a day to be dedicated to the cause of world peace and to be thereafter celebrated and known as “Armistice Day.” Armistice Day was primarily a day set aside to honor veterans of World War I, but in 1954, after World War II had required the greatest mobilization of soldiers, sailors, Marines and airmen in the Nation’s history; after American forces had fought aggression in Korea, the 83rd Congress, at the urging of the veterans service organizations, amended the Act of 1938 by striking out the word “Armistice” and inserting in its place the word “Veterans.” With the approval of this legislation (Public Law 380) on June 1, 1954, November 11th became a day to honor American veterans of all wars.

Later that same year, on October 8th, President Dwight D. Eisenhower issued the first “Veterans Day Proclamation” which stated: “In order to insure proper and widespread observance of this anniversary, all veterans, all veterans’ organizations, and the entire citizenry will wish to join hands in the common purpose. Toward this end, I am designating the Administrator of Veterans’ Affairs as Chairman of a Veterans Day National Committee, which shall include such other persons as the Chairman may select, and which will coordinate at the national level necessary planning for the observance. I am also requesting the heads of all departments and agencies of the Executive branch of the Government to assist the National Committee in every way possible.”

President Eisenhower signing HR7786, changing Armistice Day to Veterans Day.

President Eisenhower signing HR7786, changing Armistice Day to Veterans Day. From left: Alvin J. King, Wayne Richards, Arthur J. Connell, John T. Nation, Edward Rees, Richard L. Trombla, Howard W. Watts

On that same day, President Eisenhower sent a letter to the Honorable Harvey V. Higley, Administrator of Veterans’ Affairs (VA), designating him as Chairman of the Veterans Day National Committee.

In 1958, the White House advised VA’s General Counsel that the 1954 designation of the VA Administrator as Chairman of the Veterans Day National Committee applied to all subsequent VA Administrators. Since March 1989 when VA was elevated to a cabinet level department, the Secretary of Veterans Affairs has served as the committee’s chairman.

The Uniform Holiday Bill (Public Law 90-363 (82 Stat. 250)) was signed on June 28, 1968, and was intended to ensure three-day weekends for Federal employees by celebrating four national holidays on Mondays: Washington’s Birthday, Memorial Day, Veterans Day, and Columbus Day. It was thought that these extended weekends would encourage travel, recreational and cultural activities and stimulate greater industrial and commercial production. Many states did not agree with this decision and continued to celebrate the holidays on their original dates.

The first Veterans Day under the new law was observed with much confusion on October 25, 1971. It was quite apparent that the commemoration of this day was a matter of historic and patriotic significance to a great number of our citizens, and so on September 20th, 1975, President Gerald R. Ford signed Public Law 94-97 (89 Stat. 479), which returned the annual observance of Veterans Day to its original date of November 11, beginning in 1978. This action supported the desires of the overwhelming majority of state legislatures, all major veterans service organizations and the American people.

Veterans Day continues to be observed on November 11, regardless of what day of the week on which it falls. The restoration of the observance of Veterans Day to November 11 not only preserves the historical significance of the date, but helps focus attention on the important purpose of Veterans Day: A celebration to honor America’s veterans for their patriotism, love of country, and willingness to serve and sacrifice for the common good.


While you are at ORWFD, be sure and visit the Hospitality Room in the ORW Community Building. Chairman Tracie Comeaux will be on hand with fresh coffee, while you stroll around the exhibits of Boyce Morris, Jr. ORWFD Historian! Below is a sampling of the Historical Artifacts of our area Boyce has, through his on blood, sweat, and tears, brought up from the ground surrounding the Old River. You will want to see this! Thanks Boyce for all you do!

You will be amazed at what Boyce has discovered about our history in Old River-Winfree and the Beauty of the river that runs through us, Old River.

We are unique in our name, our heritage, and our bond to each other.  Old River and Winfree, Texas come see your history!

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T-Shirt frontThe Official 2013 ORWFD 5K Run/Walk Benefiting the Wounded Warrior Project in Memory of Pfc Wesley R. Riggs T-Shirt.

Here is the front with the George Washington quote of 1781, 232 years ago.

The T-Shirt is the Runner’s style Wicking T-Shirt which is 100% polyester wicking knit

·         Wicks moisture away from the body *

·         Color is “Barbers Hill” Blue

All American T–Shirts in Old River-Winfree is the Official Old River-Winfree Founders Day T-Shirt Vendor.

T-Shirts are $10 at City Hall and $14.95 plus $5.95 shipping online.  They are $14.95 online to defer any shopping cart charges.

Read and find out more about Pfc Wesley R. Riggs t http://www.orwfoundersday.com/Pfc-Wesley-R-Riggs.htm

To Donate in Pfc Wesley R. Riggs Name: Go to http://www.orwfoundersday.com/Online-Payment.html and donate the amount you want.

To Drop any entry off go to:  City Hall is at 4818 FM 565N.  Sign is out front.  The single glass door to the left is the City Offices open Monday through Thursday from 8:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m., closed from 1:00 p.m. to 2:00 p.m. for lunch.

If no one is there, simply drop your entry form and payment inside the metal door to the right of the single glass door.  There is a mail slot there.

To Enter by Mail:  Go to the Events or http://www.orwfoundersday.com/Old-River-Winfree-Run-Walk-Registration.htmlpage and click on Print out the the Entry Form and mail to:\

ORWFD-WWP
City of Old River-Winfree
4818 FM 565 N
Old River-Winfree, TX  77523
 

To Pay Online:  Go to the Events page and click on Click here to Register Online http://www.orwfoundersday.com/Online-Payment.htmland follow the instructions.  You may enter 1 person or multiple person’s all in one payment.

Extend a hand to a Warrior that needs you.  Enter or Donate in Pfc Wesley R. Riggs Name today!

 


They were not warriors, but they became heroes.  Everyday people, just like you and me, whose only crime was to simply go to work or get on a plane to see family, go on vacation, or to a business meeting.

************************************************************

Source:  AP On September 11, 2001, Al Qaeda launched a series of coordinated and deadly terror attacks on American soil that struck the heart of the country’s military and financial power centers. 

North Tower Hit

8:45 a.m.: American Airlines Flight 11 crashes into the North World Trade Center tower. Flight 11 departed Boston bound for Los Angeles at 7:59 a.m., carrying 92 people including 5 hijackers.

South Tower Hit

9:03 a.m.: United Airlines Flight 175 crashes into the South World Trade Center tower. Flight 175 departed Boston bound for Los Angeles carrying 65 people including 5 hijackers.

President Bush Informed

9:05 a.m.: President George W. Bush, speaking to students at the Emma E. Booker Elementary School in Sarasota, Fla., is interrupted by Chief of Staff Andrew Card about a second plane crashing into the South Tower.

Fighter Jets Deployed

9:13 a.m.:  Two F-15 fighter jets from Otis Air National Guard Base leave military airspace on Cape Cod and head for Manhattan. Minutes later, the Federal Aviation Administration bans takeoffs nationwide for flights heading to the New York area.

Bridges Closed

9:21 a.m.: All bridges and tunnels into Manhattan are closed. Residents and workers in lower Manhattan take to the streets to get away from the ash filling the air.

Pentagon Hit

9:40 a.m.: American Airlines Flight 77 crashes into the west side of the Pentagon, killing all 64 people on board and 125 Pentagon personnel.

White House Evacuated

9:43 a.m.: The West Wing of the White House and the U.S. Capitol building are evacuated and closed.

South Tower Collapses

9:59 a.m.: The South Tower of the World Trade Center collapses.

United 93 Crashes

10:03 a.m.: United Airlines Flight 93 crashes near Shanksville, Pa., following a passenger revolt against the hijackers. All 44 people on board, including 4 hijackers, were killed.

North Tower Collapses

10:28 a.m.: The North Tower collapses approximately 30 minutes after the South Tower.

Mayor Giuliani Orders Evacuation

10:49AM: New York City Mayor Rudy Giuliani orders an evacuation of Lower Manhattan.

Firemen Raise the Flag

5:00 p.m.: As rescue workers continue to go through the rubble, New York City firemen hoist an American flag at the site of the World Trade Center — an iconic image often compared to the World War II photo of the raising of the flag on Iwo Jima.

Bush Speaks

8:30 p.m.: President Bush addresses the nation from the White House. Members of Congress are told that the administration has enough evidence indicating Usama bin Laden and his Al Qaeda terrorist network are responsible for the attacks.

May God Bless America and America Continue to Bless God!


Editor’s note:  This is a tribute to Ken “The Dauber” Pridgeon, a War Veteran himself, (serving from the age of 19 to the age of 27), Portrait of a Warrior Memorial Gallery, our Fallen Heroes, all American Veterans, and those who serve today or those who stand ready to go to battle for American Freedom. You must go, if you haven’t already.  Take the kids, the grandkids, grandparents, Veterans in your family; it is a must see!

FIRST:  When I walked into the Portrait of a Warrior Memorial Art Gallery, I thought of the famous “Jaws” movie line “WE’RE GOING TO NEED A BIGGER BOAT!”

BACKGROUND:

kenpridgeonmural4webI met Ken “the Dauber” Pridgeon when Old River-Winfree Founders Day was looking for someone to paint a roadside mural for our Founders Day.  Ken is famous for the mural at the Baytown Museum and I thought, that’s our guyI

I remember going to his house in early to mid 2009 and saw the work he does. We did commission Ken to do our Roadside mural.  

Go to this ORW Community News posting to see Ken painting our mural:  http://orwfd.wordpress.com/2010/06/25/commissioning-history/

It was months after that, I felt led to ask Ken to do a portrait of Pfc. Wesley R. Riggs for Founders Day.  Ken says when do you need it…..  Ken tells the story that it was on a Wednesday I asked him to paint the portrait.  He remembers me saying, Saturday, of course!  That was two days away!

20100717_68Ken came to Founders Day that Saturday, sat in Mayor Joe Landry’s chair, and painted away on the portrait.

(This portrait of Pfc. Wesley R. Riggs turned out to be the FIRST portrait in the long line of Portraits of our Fallen Heroes that Ken has done since that day.  It started Ken on a Journey of a lifetime, blessed by God.)   As Ken set there painting, we didn’t know that another soldier, Army Staff Sgt. Jesse W. Ainsworth, was being escorted by the Patriot Guard going north on Hwy 146 taking him back to his final resting place in Dayton, Texas.  Staff Sgt. Ainsworth was the second portrait.  The rest is history.

I see Ken when he comes back to where it all began at Old River-Winfree Founders Day and follow his posts on Facebook,  but, I had never been to the Memorial Gallery.

August 30, 2013

Yesterday, I was dropping off flyers for the ORWFD 5K Run/Walk Benefitting the Wounded Warrior Project in Memory of Pfc Wesley R. Riggs and I put the Gallery and Ken on my list of places to stop.

I shot pictures up a storm outside, making sure that all of those who saw this post would feel as it they were with me on this visit.  I was a happy little camper; hot , but happy.

I then opened the door to go into the Gallery.  It was then the 6 senses we are all born with, normally, took over.

First was the gift of sight:  My eyes opened wide at the color they were viewing, brilliant in red, white and blue.  The Red, White, and Blue of our Fallen Heroes.  When my eyes started going from left to right around the Gallery, my thoughts were, “So many portraits”.  Meaning, so many lost lives.  I took in the portraits that go from ceiling to floor and my eyes started misting up and tears flowed gently down my face.

Mind you, I’m not out of the doorway yet.  I’m just standing there taking it all in.  

Then my hearing took over and I could hear music, Patriotic Country Music coming from a radio in the back; and, something else;  a voice, and I realized and recognized Ken singing at the top of his lungs along with the radio.

I could smell the very faint aroma of paint and started taking pictures to make sure you were seeing what I saw.

I worked my way back toward the music and Ken, all along snapping pictures and just looking at the lives affected by our last two wars and beyond.  As I neared Ken, I saw him with his paint brush up, just a painting away on another portrait of a hero, a special kind of hero.

I called to Ken and approached him as he sat and we greeted one another.  I turned around from him, telling Ken how wonderful the Gallery is, and I spotted it.

Right behind where Ken paints is his first Portrait, the portrait of Pfc Wesley R. Riggs son of my friend, Daniel Riggs.   I’m an emotional person, but it seemed like Wes was there cheering Ken on and watching over the work.  Right by Wes was Staff Sgt Ainsworth, Ken’s second portrait.

Ken and I started talking and I continued my way snapping pictures, sharing with Ken, reminiscing, and talking about the upcoming 2013 ORWFD on October 12, 2013.

We talked and I saw soo much more, like the Vietnam jacket pictured in the video below.  SO much more to see.

But, YOU will have to go find out the rest of the story on your on.  Ken is getting older and his health seemed off to me, he seemed tired.  But when he starts talking about his “boys and girls” his face lights up and it’s a beautiful transformation.

Go….. go soon, to see Ken “the Dauber” Pridgeon, a Texas Icon!


In Memory of Pfc Wesley R. Riggs, who gave the ultimate sacrifice, and all that have served and are serving today, who fought and fight FOR FREEDOM!

World War I – known at the time as “The Great War” – officially ended when the Treaty of Versailles was signed on June 28, 1919, in the Palace of Versailles outside the town of Versailles, France. However, fighting ceased seven months earlier when an armistice, or temporary cessation of hostilities, between the Allied nations and Germany went into effect on the eleventh hour of the eleventh day of the eleventh month. For that reason, November 11, 1918, is generally regarded as the end of “the war to end all wars.”

Soldiers of the 353rd Infantry near a church at Stenay, Meuse in France.

Soldiers of the 353rd Infantry near a church at Stenay, Meuse in France, wait for the end of hostilities.  This photo was taken at 10:58 a.m., on November 11, 1918, two minutes before the armistice ending World War I went into effect

In November 1919, President Wilson proclaimed November 11 as the first commemoration of Armistice Day with the following words: “To us in America, the reflections of Armistice Day will be filled with solemn pride in the heroism of those who died in the country’s service and with gratitude for the victory, both because of the thing from which it has freed us and because of the opportunity it has given America to show her sympathy with peace and justice in the councils of the nations…”

The original concept for the celebration was for a day observed with parades and public meetings and a brief suspension of business beginning at 11:00 a.m.

The United States Congress officially recognized the end of World War I when it passed a concurrent resolution on June 4, 1926, with these words:

Whereas the 11th of November 1918, marked the cessation of the most destructive, sanguinary, and far reaching war in human annals and the resumption by the people of the United States of peaceful relations with other nations, which we hope may never again be severed, and

Whereas it is fitting that the recurring anniversary of this date should be commemorated with thanksgiving and prayer and exercises designed to perpetuate peace through good will and mutual understanding between nations; and

Whereas the legislatures of twenty-seven of our States have already declared November 11 to be a legal holiday: Therefore be it Resolved by the Senate (the House of Representatives concurring), that the President of the United States is requested to issue a proclamation calling upon the officials to display the flag of the United States on all Government buildings on November 11 and inviting the people of the United States to observe the day in schools and churches, or other suitable places, with appropriate ceremonies of friendly relations with all other peoples.

An Act (52 Stat. 351; 5 U. S. Code, Sec. 87a) approved May 13, 1938, made the 11th of November in each year a legal holiday—a day to be dedicated to the cause of world peace and to be thereafter celebrated and known as “Armistice Day.” Armistice Day was primarily a day set aside to honor veterans of World War I, but in 1954, after World War II had required the greatest mobilization of soldiers, sailors, Marines and airmen in the Nation’s history; after American forces had fought aggression in Korea, the 83rd Congress, at the urging of the veterans service organizations, amended the Act of 1938 by striking out the word “Armistice” and inserting in its place the word “Veterans.” With the approval of this legislation (Public Law 380) on June 1, 1954, November 11th became a day to honor American veterans of all wars.

Later that same year, on October 8th, President Dwight D. Eisenhower issued the first “Veterans Day Proclamation” which stated: “In order to insure proper and widespread observance of this anniversary, all veterans, all veterans’ organizations, and the entire citizenry will wish to join hands in the common purpose. Toward this end, I am designating the Administrator of Veterans’ Affairs as Chairman of a Veterans Day National Committee, which shall include such other persons as the Chairman may select, and which will coordinate at the national level necessary planning for the observance. I am also requesting the heads of all departments and agencies of the Executive branch of the Government to assist the National Committee in every way possible.”

President Eisenhower signing HR7786, changing Armistice Day to Veterans Day.

President Eisenhower signing HR7786, changing Armistice Day to Veterans Day. From left: Alvin J. King, Wayne Richards, Arthur J. Connell, John T. Nation, Edward Rees, Richard L. Trombla, Howard W. Watts 

On that same day, President Eisenhower sent a letter to the Honorable Harvey V. Higley, Administrator of Veterans’ Affairs (VA), designating him as Chairman of the Veterans Day National Committee.

In 1958, the White House advised VA’s General Counsel that the 1954 designation of the VA Administrator as Chairman of the Veterans Day National Committee applied to all subsequent VA Administrators. Since March 1989 when VA was elevated to a cabinet level department, the Secretary of Veterans Affairs has served as the committee’s chairman.

The Uniform Holiday Bill (Public Law 90-363 (82 Stat. 250)) was signed on June 28, 1968, and was intended to ensure three-day weekends for Federal employees by celebrating four national holidays on Mondays: Washington’s Birthday, Memorial Day, Veterans Day, and Columbus Day. It was thought that these extended weekends would encourage travel, recreational and cultural activities and stimulate greater industrial and commercial production. Many states did not agree with this decision and continued to celebrate the holidays on their original dates.

The first Veterans Day under the new law was observed with much confusion on October 25, 1971. It was quite apparent that the commemoration of this day was a matter of historic and patriotic significance to a great number of our citizens, and so on September 20th, 1975, President Gerald R. Ford signed Public Law 94-97 (89 Stat. 479), which returned the annual observance of Veterans Day to its original date of November 11, beginning in 1978. This action supported the desires of the overwhelming majority of state legislatures, all major veterans service organizations and the American people.

Veterans Day continues to be observed on November 11, regardless of what day of the week on which it falls. The restoration of the observance of Veterans Day to November 11 not only preserves the historical significance of the date, but helps focus attention on the important purpose of Veterans Day: A celebration to honor America’s veterans for their patriotism, love of country, and willingness to serve and sacrifice for the common good.


Just in case people forget, there are Amazing Soldiers  standing at the Tomb through this craziness. This a picture from this morning, 10-29-12.

Some posts are never abandoned. The “Old Guard” will continue to guard the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier throughout Sandy.

The Tomb of the Unknowns, near the center of the cemetery, is one of Arlington’s most popular tourist sites.

The Tomb contains the remains of unknown American soldiers from World Wars I and II, the Korean Conflict and (until 1998) the Vietnam War. Each was presented with the Medal of Honor at the time of interment and the medals, as well as the flags which covered their caskets, are on display inside the Memorial Amphitheater, directly to the rear of the Tomb.

The Tomb is guarded 24-hours-per-day and 365-days-per year by specially trained members of the 3rd United States Infantry (The Old Guard).

The Memorial Amphitheater has been the scene of the funerals of some prominent Americans (such as General John J. “Black Jack” Pershing) as well as the site of both Memorial Day and Veterans Days celebrations.

Find out more at Tomb of the Unknown Soldier.


 

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
October 18, 2012
www.texasattorneygeneral.gov
Subscribe to E-News
CONTACT
Press Office at
(512) 463-2050
 

Attorney General Abbott Lauds Victory for Cheerleaders in the Fight for Religious Liberty

Hardin County Judge agrees that cheerleaders may continue to use bible verses on game day banners

AUSTIN — Attorney General Abbott made the following comments after a Hardin County judges’ decision to continue to allow cheerleaders the opportunity to express their religious beliefs:

Today’s decision is an important victory for the cheerleaders’ freedom of religion. The Constitution has never demanded that students check their religious beliefs at the schoolhouse door. Students’ ability to express their religious views adds to the diversity of thought that has made this country so strong. Texas law supports students’ right to freely express their religious beliefs without discrimination. We will not allow groups or individuals to wage a war on religion by trying to intimidate students into embracing a secular mindset.

Media links
District Court’s Order

The Freedom From Religion Foundation is legally wrong when it tries to bully schools into denying students their First Amendment right to share their religious beliefs. Just as schools cannot command students to support a particular belief, those same schools cannot silence a student’s religious belief. The Constitution does not give preference to those who have no religious beliefs over those who do.

FOR OTHER ITEMS ASSOCIATED WITH ATTORNEY GENERAL ANNOUNCEMENTS, ACCESS OAG NEWS RELEASES ONLINE AT WWW.TEXASATTORNEYGENERAL.GOV


 

 

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
October 17, 2012
www.texasattorneygeneral.gov
Subscribe to E-News
CONTACT
Press Office at
(512) 463-2050

Texas Attorney General’s Office Defends Constitutionality of the Texas Religious Viewpoints Anti-Discrimination Act

State intervenes in Kountze ISD case to defend Texas law, support Kountze cheerleaders

 

AUSTIN – Texas Attorney General Greg Abbott issued the following statement after the State of Texas intervened in the Kountze cheerleaders’ lawsuit to defend the Texas Religious Viewpoints Anti-Discrimination Act:

“After receiving a menacing letter from an organization with a reputation for bullying school districts, the Kountze ISD improperly prohibited high school cheerleaders from including religious messages on their game day banners. Those banners, which the cheerleaders independently produce on their own time with privately funded supplies, are perfectly constitutional. The State of Texas intervened in this case to defend the cheerleaders’ right to exercise their personal religious beliefs – and to defend the constitutionality of a state law that protects religious liberties for all Texans.”

Media links
Texas Attorney General’s petition to intervene

The State of Texas intervened in the case because the Kountze ISD’s court filing affirmatively questioned the constitutionality of state laws enacted by the Texas Legislature. In documents filed with the state district court in Hardin County, the Attorney General’s Office explained that the Texas Religious Viewpoints Anti-Discrimination Act requires school districts to treat a student’s voluntary expression of religious views in the same manner that the district treats a student’s expression of any other point of view. The Act authorizes students to express themselves individually – or in groups – in the same manner as students involved in secular or non-curricular activities. Neither the Act – nor the U.S. Constitution – allows government officials to ban all references to religion from the public square. As such, the State is urging the court to dismiss Kountze ISD’s argument that the Act – or the religious messages cheerleaders displayed during football games – violates the Establishment Clause of the First Amendment.

The State’s action in the Kountze ISD case reflects Attorney General Abbott’s latest effort to defend public acknowledgments of religion. The State’s religious liberties cases include:

• In 2011, the Attorney General’s Office submitted a legal brief asking a federal appeals court to uphold Medina Valley High School graduates’ constitutional rights to freely express their religious beliefs during graduation ceremonies.
• In January 2009, after Attorney General Abbott submitted a legal brief joined by all 50 state attorneys general, a federal judge cleared the way for President Barack Obama to include references to religion during his Presidential Inauguration.
• In 2007, Attorney General Abbott defeated a lawsuit that attempted to remove the words “under God” from the Texas Pledge of Allegiance.
• In 2005, Attorney General Abbott appeared before the U.S. Supreme Court and defended the State’s Ten Commandments monument, which stands on the Texas Capitol grounds. In that case, Van Orden v. Perry, the plaintiff sought to remove the Ten Commandments monument from the Capitol grounds, but Attorney General Abbott successfully argued that the monument was entirely constitutional.

FOR OTHER ITEMS ASSOCIATED WITH ATTORNEY GENERAL ANNOUNCEMENTS, ACCESS OAG NEWS RELEASES ONLINE AT WWW.TEXASATTORNEYGENERAL.GOV.


They were not warriors, but they became heroes.  Everyday people, just like you and me, whose only crime was to simply go to work or get on a plane to see family, go on vacation, or to a business meeting. ************************************************************

Source:  AP On September 11, 2001, Al Qaeda launched a series of coordinated and deadly terror attacks on American soil that struck the heart of the country’s military and financial power centers. 

North Tower Hit

8:45 a.m.: American Airlines Flight 11 crashes into the North World Trade Center tower. Flight 11 departed Boston bound for Los Angeles at 7:59 a.m., carrying 92 people including 5 hijackers.

South Tower Hit

9:03 a.m.: United Airlines Flight 175 crashes into the South World Trade Center tower. Flight 175 departed Boston bound for Los Angeles carrying 65 people including 5 hijackers.

President Bush Informed

9:05 a.m.: President George W. Bush, speaking to students at the Emma E. Booker Elementary School in Sarasota, Fla., is interrupted by Chief of Staff Andrew Card about a second plane crashing into the South Tower.

 

Fighter Jets Deployed

9:13 a.m.:  Two F-15 fighter jets from Otis Air National Guard Base leave military airspace on Cape Cod and head for Manhattan. Minutes later, the Federal Aviation Administration bans takeoffs nationwide for flights heading to the New York area.

Bridges Closed

9:21 a.m.: All bridges and tunnels into Manhattan are closed. Residents and workers in lower Manhattan take to the streets to get away from the ash filling the air.

Pentagon Hit

9:40 a.m.: American Airlines Flight 77 crashes into the west side of the Pentagon, killing all 64 people on board and 125 Pentagon personnel.

White House Evacuated

9:43 a.m.: The West Wing of the White House and the U.S. Capitol building are evacuated and closed.

South Tower Collapses

9:59 a.m.: The South Tower of the World Trade Center collapses.

United 93 Crashes

10:03 a.m.: United Airlines Flight 93 crashes near Shanksville, Pa., following a passenger revolt against the hijackers. All 44 people on board, including 4 hijackers, were killed.

North Tower Collapses

10:28 a.m.: The North Tower collapses approximately 30 minutes after the South Tower.

Mayor Giuliani Orders Evacuation

10:49AM: New York City Mayor Rudy Giuliani orders an evacuation of Lower Manhattan.

Firemen Raise the Flag

5:00 p.m.: As rescue workers continue to go through the rubble, New York City firemen hoist an American flag at the site of the World Trade Center — an iconic image often compared to the World War II photo of the raising of the flag on Iwo Jima.

Bush Speaks

8:30 p.m.: President Bush addresses the nation from the White House. Members of Congress are told that the administration has enough evidence indicating Usama bin Laden and his Al Qaeda terrorist network are responsible for the attacks.

May God Bless America and America Continue to Bless God!


“We have a few settlers looking for a great place to settle and call home.I hear there is a nice river to our West!We are out about a month away!We hear their are indians near and troubles,we are prepared and will be there soon!!! “

Signed, Billy Wallace, III

The Historical Reenactment, Historical Artifacts, Historical Living, and, this year, the Chambers County Historical Commission really add so much to Old River-Winfree Founders Day.  

How they lived, the tools they used, their living conditions are displayed so beautifully, you will run out of film in that camera.

Billy Wallace, III and his posse add to the excitement with their Historical Reenactment.

We have everything at Old River-Winfree Founders Day and it’s all FREE except for the contests!

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Old River-Winfree Founders Day is a City of Old River-Winfree Event.  The 5K Run/Walk Exclusively Sponsored by Barbers Hill Bank is a run for the Wounded Warrior Project.

The following article was co-written by Kenneth Collier, Old River-Winfree Resident and Race Manager of the 2012 5K Run/Walk Benefitting the Wounded Warrior Project in Memory of Pfc Wesley R. Riggs and Colleen Fontenot, Old River-Winfree Resident and President of Old River-Winfree Founders Day.

Old River-Winfree Founders Day is backed by a host of volunteers working hard to make this event and all events at Founders Day a Day to remember!

Please take the time and read below.  Join us in the magnificent Run for this generations Warriors!


The July 2012 Q2 Small Business Survey is the fifth consecutive small business survey released by the U.S. Chamber of Commerce. The quarterly surveys are designed to track the small business community’s outlook on their business, the local economy, and the national economy over time. Small business owners are polled nation-wide, and respondents include U.S. Chamber members and non-members.

http://www.uschambersmallbusinessnation.com/community/small-business-outlook-survey-2012-q2

Quarter 2
Small Business Outlook Survey – July 2012
Key Findings
Flat Economic Growth and Uncertainty Continue to Limit Hiring

  • Eight-out-of-ten small businesses continue to think the national economy is off on the wrong track and more than half (53%) of small businesses surveyed cite economic uncertainty as their top concern.  Only 14% say the national economy is on the right track.
     
  • Forty-five percent of small business owners surveyed are not sure if their business’s best days are ahead of or behind them. In addition, only 34% of small business owners say the business climate over the next two years is likely to greatly or somewhat improve.
     
  • Small business owners’ concerns about the future are impacting their hiring.  Since March, the number of small businesses who expect to lose employees over the next year has grown from 8% to 12%.  Only one-in-five (20%) of small businesses surveyed expect to add staff in 2013.  The majority of small businesses say they are likely to keep the same number of employees over the next year – meaning there is likely to be little change in overall unemployment figures.
     

 

Health Care Continues to Be a Top Impediment to Growth

  • Following the Supreme Court’s decision on the President’s health care law, only 3% of small business owners report that the Supreme Court’s decision to uphold the law will make them more likely to hire new employees. The vast majority said they would be less likely to hire or that their workforce would stay the same size.  When asked directly what the impact would be, 72% said that the health care law will make it harder for their business to hire.
     
  • Support for the law is very low among small businesses surveyed (21%), and almost eight-out-of-ten (77%) of small businesses surveyed support its repeal. 

 

 

Missy
Melissa G. Malechek, IOM
President, West Chambers County Chamber of Commerce
Office:  281-576-5440    Cell:  281-831-6382
Missy@TheWCCCC.com

Happy Fourth of July! It’s my distinct pleasure to be in Big Sandy.

I’m not saying anything bad about Austin, you understand, but as someone born and raised in a small town, sometimes it’s nice to get away to a place where you can breathe a little.

I’m also happy to be a part of your efforts to raise money to fund scholarships for the kids of Big Sandy.

There’s no better way to spend a holiday, and this truly is a special holiday for people across our great nation.

These are the days we remember, as we reconnect with people we haven’t seen in a while and find out how much that niece or nephew has sprung up over the last few months.

Of course, any opportunity to gather with family and friends, whether it’s for waffles in the morning or maybe for something off the grill later in the afternoon is a special opportunity.

For me, though, Independence Day has always had a unique meaning, even beyond the warmth we enjoy in the company of loved ones.

Today, we remember and celebrate the wisdom and the courage of our founding fathers who faced adversity and created a new nation, the greatest nation.

It’s important to remember this was a group of individuals from wildly different backgrounds, holding divergent viewpoints with very different ideas about how to do things.

Despite these differences, on July 4, 1776, they came together in Philadelphia and presented a united front to the King of England, the most powerful man in their world.

They were farmers, merchants and jurists, and had gathered in Pennsylvania to represent the people back home, in Rhode Island, Georgia and Virginia.

These were Americans who had grown tired of being victimized and intimidated by the crown and had dreams of living their lives in freedom and liberty.

Together, they stood as one and declared to King George that they were independent and free, free from his rule and free from his tyranny forever.

Sometimes it’s hard to understand just what an act of courage that was.

We all have the benefit of hindsight, but when they put pen to paper that summer day 236 years ago today, they were risking everything they had, everything they were to earn their freedom.

We were many hard-fought years from victory, and they knew they’d be brought up on treason charges if the Revolution failed.

Yet they put their names and their lives on the line.

Such was their belief in freedom and their belief in liberty and democracy.

Another revolutionary of that time, Patrick Henry, perhaps summed up their attitude best more than a year earlier with a simple, and now eternal phrase: Give me liberty or give me death.

Those weren’t just words in 1776, either, death was a real possibility.

By standing up to tyranny, they all set the example we’ve followed in the years since, none more so than the members of our military.

Like our founding fathers, the brave men and women of the United States Armed Forces have time and again demonstrated a commitment to the ideals written in the Declaration of Independence.

We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness.

From Valley Forge to the Battle of New Orleans, from the trenches of World War I to the Battles of Fallujah, our nation’s best and brightest have answered the call to defend freedom, and the American way, against all threats.

If there are any veterans here with us today, I hope you will raise your hand and let us know, so we can honor you with our applause and cheers. God bless you all.

I would go so far as to say that there is no higher form of public service than wearing the uniform of one’s country.

If you came of age during the Vietnam War, like I did, you probably remember a time when many members of our generation believed the opposite and made sure everyone knew it, including our military.

Fortunately, America has turned the corner on how we treat the members of our armed forces and does a much better job showing them the respect they deserve for their willingness to risk their lives in our defense and to set others free.

Today, we understand that it was only thanks to our veterans’ valiant efforts that the “Great Experiment” that is the United States has succeeded for more than two centuries.

We’ve proven it can be done.

We’ve survived to inspire others, and spread the principles that have made our republic the greatest nation on earth.

Today, people from around the world look to the United States as a bastion of liberty, a nation where everyone has a chance to build their dreams.

It’s a nation where anyone, regardless of background, can go as far as their desire and determination can take them from innovative idea to marketplace leader or from the mailroom to the CEO’s office.

There’s a reason people around the globe know what you mean when you say “The American Dream.”

Our nation has endured because our people are good, our principles are sound, and our purpose is unchanged.

As Americans, it’s our responsibility to remain dedicated to those principles, those values, that have made our country great in the good times, and the bad.

We are all blessed by being Americans, whether by birth or naturalization, but with those blessings comes responsibility.

We owe it to those who follow us, our children and our grandchildren and great-grandchildren to leave behind an America that’s not only as strong and moral and the one we found, but stronger, in all facets.

We owe it to them to keep America on the path of faith and morality that has served our nation so well for so long.

To paraphrase the great Irving Berlin, even in the dark of night, we have to call upon our Creator to walk beside us and guide us with light from above.

From the mountains, to the prairies, to the oceans, white with foam, God bless America, my home sweet home.

May God bless you and, through you, may He continue to bless the great state of Texas and this nation we love so much.


What better videos to show than the best of the Star Spangled Banner at America’s Superbowls?  These are just two of the best!  Enjoy!

 


Gov. Rick Perry released a statement regarding the Obama Administration’s immigration announcement:

“The Obama Administration’s election-year tactic to bypass Congress and arbitrarily grant amnesty to potentially millions of illegal immigrants is another example of its blatant disregard for our Constitution, our rule of law and our democratic process. The laws of this nation are not open to selective, convenient or political interpretation; they are the very foundation of our freedom, and the protections they guarantee make our nation strong and attractive to immigrants around the world – millions of whom abide by our laws and processes and seek legal entry. These are decisions that should be thoroughly debated within the halls of Congress.

This Administration has failed to provide a secure border, which is essential to national security, and is instead granting blanket amnesty to those who have broken our laws. Failed border security and immigration policies have created a magnet for those who came in the first place. It’s clear President Obama prefers to upend the rule of law, picking winners and losers, rather than work with Congress and the American people on a sustainable, long-term solution.”


Colleen Fontenot, ORWFD President; Bob Botto, 5K Run/Walk Race Manager; Mayor Joe Landry, Mayor of Old River-Winfree; Katelyn Kelly, Winner of the Pfc Wesley R. Riggs Memorial Scholarship Award; Bob Allen, Senior Vice-President, Barbers Hill Bank a Branch of Anahuac National Bank; Madison Kelly, sister of Katelyn; Darrla Kelly, Mother of Katelyn; Tim Kelly, Father of Katelyn; and Jeanette Green, ORWFD Bakeoff Chairman.

Old River-Winfree Founders Day, sponsored by the City of Old River-Winfree is proud to announce Katelyn Kelly as the winner of the Pfc. Wesley R. Riggs Memorial Scholarship Award given to a graduating senior at Barbers Hill High School.

One of the items required in the Application for this scholarship was an Essay on the Legacy of Pfc Wesley R. Riggs. Katelyn’s Essay was on “The Importance of Volunteerism”. This essay hit right on the sacrifice made by our Military and their families. Katelyn shows a maturity and understanding of our First Line of Defense Volunteers that is far beyond her years.

An excerpt from Kelly’s essay will help you understand why she was chosen.

“What if no one answered the call to protect our country and the freedom that so many people take for granted. Pfc. Wesley R. Riggs answered that call to volunteer to serve in the United States Army. I am sure it was a proud day when he joined and when he graduated boot camp. I bet there was no fanfare or recognition outside of his and his family’s pride and sense of accomplishment.

Unfortunately, it has taken an attack on American soil and two wars for Americans to appreciate this country’s first responders and our volunteer military. After the September 11th attacks on the World Trade Towers, when we watched the brave men and women of the NYFD rush into those towers as everyone was running away, Americans have appreciated the bravery and celebrated our first responders all across our country. After the call by our President to these attacks and to defend our way of life, thousands of young Americans bravely answered the call to volunteer and fight to defend our freedom. No one volunteers to die, whether it is fighting a fire, answering a police call or serving in the Military in a hostile country. These brave men and women, like Pfc Riggs, have all been doing a job, a job they were genuinely proud of, and doing it to the best of their ability. God has a plan for all of us and he uses our lives for a greter purpose. I am thankful that men and women like Pfc Riggs have volunteered to serve in our Military, and while far too many have died in service to our country, I believe that they all served a special purpose under God’s guidance. I am sure Pfc. Riggs’ family all understand what his purpose was, and while they miss him each and every day, they are proud of his accomplishments and his service to our country.”

Katelyn plans to attend Lee College where she will aim toward a Career in Medicine as an Emergency Room Nurse.

Katelyn was awarded $1,160 toward her tuition, books, etc. The Scholarship Award is derived from the Old River-Winfree Founders Day 5K Run/Walk, sponsored by Barbers Hill Bank and the Auction of Pies, Cake, and Cupcakes from the Bakeoff Contest sponsored by Carnes Engineering.


We’re putting money on the fact that you’ll find this as touching as we did. Take a look at what happened when hundreds of strangers waiting for their flights at a D.C. airport greet World War II vets deplaning their own “Honor Flight” with a huge applause. The veterans were cheered as they walked down a path made for them by the crowd.

“It was just an outstanding day,” said one of the vets, Ed Cavanaugh. “It was the day of a lifetime, to be honest with you. The people who run the [Honor Flights] … are the finest group of people I’ve ever had the opportunity to work with. The trip that day was unreal.”

Yesterday marked the 68th anniversary of the D-Day invasion.

Take a look at this emotional video:

Thank you Soldiers and Marines for keeping us free!!

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