Friday, April 19, 2019

Three sought on drug charges

 The Red River County Sheriff’s Office needs your help locating the people in these photographs.

Nathan Ray Champ Thomas of Red River County is wanted for Multiple Counts of Manufacture or Delivery of Substances in Penalty Group 1 which are Felony Warrants. Nathan Thomas is 29 years old and is described to be 6’08” tall, 180lbs, with brown hair and green eyes.


Arlo Docion Burns of Red River County is wanted for Multiple Counts of Manufacture or Delivery of Substances in Penalty Group 1 which are Felony Warrants. Arlo Burns is 45 years old and is described to be 6’06” tall, 160lbs, with black hair and brown eyes.

Jacquelyn Nichol Jackson of Red River County is wanted for Manufacture or Delivery of Substances in Penalty Group 1which is a Felony Warrant. Jacquelyn Jackson is 31 years old and is described to be 5’03” tall, 240lbs, with blonde hair and blue eyes.

If you have any information that might lead to the arrest of any of these people, you remain anonymous, and if your information leads to his arrest you become eligible for a cash reward of up to $1,000.

There are multiple ways to leave a tip:

• or www.427tips,com
• 903-785-TIPS or 903-427-TIPS
• Smartphone app P3 Tips

Lamar and Red River County Crime Stoppers will not pay rewards for information provided through any source other than calls to its program. Calls may be made to Lamar County Crime Stoppers by any method mentioned above.

Wednesday, April 10, 2019

Times takes four awards in annual press competition

The North and East Texas Press Association held its annual convention April 4-6 in Tyler. The award winners in the Better Newspaper Contest were announced at a luncheon Saturday.

The Clarksville Times took four awards in the Medium-sized weekly newspaper category.

Ed Pryor won second place for Column Writing. Lou Antonelli won two writing awards, third place for News and third place for Features. The Times took 4th place in Headline Writing.

Friday, April 5, 2019

Operation Big Red Culminates in nine Arrests in Red River County

Approximately 100 law enforcement officers from across Texas converged on Clarksville, Texas, this morning to arrest nine men and women who now face federal and state drug charges, U.S. Attorney Joseph D. Brown announced today.

The operation today involved approximately 100 law enforcement officers. Seven entry teams, including four SWAT teams, executed search and arrest warrants throughout the Clarksville area. This operation comes at the culmination of a multi-year investigation that has already led to the arrest and prosecution of four federal defendants - Brian Bradley Beers, Kevin Wayne Guess, James Wayne Johnson, and Billy Carl Webb, Jr. - and two state defendants. The investigation also led to the identification, arrest, and conviction of Marvin Earl Baty for a murder he committed in Oklahoma.

The following agencies were involved in the operation today: Texas Department of Public Safety, including the Special Response Team, Special Weapons and Tactics Team, Criminal Investigation Division, Aircraft Operations Division, Highway Patrol Division, Victim Services, and Communications Services; Red River County Sheriff’s Office; Clarksville Police Department; Mt. Pleasant Police Department SWAT team; Texas Parks and Wildlife; Federal Bureau of Investigation; United States Marshals Service; and Texas Child Protective Services.

U.S. Attorney Joseph D. Brown also announced today that seven Clarksville, Texas, men have been charged with conspiracy to possess and distribute methamphetamine. Marvin Earl Baty, a 44-year-old man, Jacory Dewayne Coulter, a 33-year-old man, Gregory Lamont Dillard, a 48-year-old man, Victor Gonzales, a 44-year-old man, Miguel Angel Hernandez, a 57-year-old man, and Neopholis Dontray Scales, a 33-year-old man, were named in an indictment returned by a federal grand jury on February 20, 2019. Four defendants have been arrested and will appear today before Magistrate Judge Roy S. Payne in the Marshall Division of the Eastern District of Texas.

According to the indictment, beginning in or before January 2016, Baty, Coulter, Dillard, Gonzales, Hernandez, and Scales conspired to possess with intent to distribute fifty grams or more of methamphetamine. Additionally, the indictment alleges that during that time each defendant possessed methamphetamine with intent to distribute.

If convicted, Baty, Coulter, Dillard, Gonzales, Hernandez, and Scales, face a minimum of ten years and as much as life in federal prison.

This case is being investigated by the Texas Department of Public Safety, and the Red River County Sheriff’s Office. The case is being prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorney Jonathan R. Hornok.

The Red River County Sheriff’s Office in conjunction with Operation Big Red has so far obtained State Indictments for Manufacture or Delivery of Substances in Penalty Group 1 on twelve defendants. George Edward Proby Jr., a 43-year-old man, Evelyn Jean Owens Proby, a 51-year-old woman, Sarah Elizabeth Teas, a 33-year-old woman, Delbert Bernett King III, a 39-year-old man, Krystal Shantell Forte, a 38-year-old woman, Wiley Joe Bates, a 41-year-old man, and Edward Ellis Taylor, a 56-year-old man. All defendants are from the Red River County area. This is an on-going investigation which may result in additional charges and arrests.

These cases are also being investigated by the Texas Department of Public Safety, and the Red River County Sheriff’s Office. The cases are being prosecuted by Red River County Attorney Val Varley.

An indictment is not evidence of guilt.  All defendants are presumed innocent until proven guilty beyond a reasonable doubt in a court of law.

Former Clarksville Postmaster Jerry Lester passes away

Jerry Ray Lester, age 81, of Clarksville, passed away, Wednesday, April 3, 2019, at his residence. Jerry was born, January 1, 1938, in Terrell to Edgar P. and Willie Nichols Lester. He was preceded in death by his parents; and a sister, Betty Aslin. Jerry retired after thirty-five years with the U.S. Postal Service and was Postmaster for the City of Clarksville. He served in the U.S. Navy and was an avid sports fan. Jerry was an exceptional softball pitcher and pitched for the U.S. Navy Softball Team. He brought his talents back home and struck out many a batter in the summer softball leagues. Jerry also coached several youth baseball teams through the years.

Graveside services are scheduled for 1:00 p.m., Tuesday, April 9, 2019, at Aikin Grove Cemetery with Rev. James Brown officiating. Burial will follow under the direction of Clarksville Funeral Home.

Survivors include his wife of 43 years, Mildred Barger Lester of Clarksville; one son, Justin Lester of Clarksville; two daughters, Janette Braden of Clarksville and Lorri Olglesby and husband, Donnie of New Boston; cousins, Roby Johnson of Kaufman, Leon Lester of Wills Point and Stephen Johnson of Lubbock, eight grandchildren and seven great grandchildren.

Memories and condolences may be added at

Thursday, April 4, 2019

New tourism promotion

Painting of the first quilt blocks to promote the Historic Red River County Barn Quilt Trail began on Tuesday, April 2, at the DrillTech facility.  DrillTech owners Gary and Julie Davidson have donated the space for the project. Here, Julie Davidson shows off a work in progress. Painting the durable signs will take many days and many coats of paint. Planning for the Historic Red River County Barn Quilt Trail began last spring and is a project sponsored by the Clarksville Main Street Board.

Friday, March 22, 2019

Red River Revue presents comedy

The Red River Revue Center will be presenting a "world premiere" play by a Texas playwright, Michael Jordan. The play is "An Afternoon In Central Park" - a short comedy in one act, with three scenes. The play will be presented at the Detroit Community Center on Friday, March 22nd at 7 p.m., and Saturday, March 23rd, at 12 p.m. and 2 p.m.

This is a free, and family friendly event – The Revue accepts donations only. Concessions will be available for purchase.

Thursday, March 21, 2019

City urges residents to use convenience station

Managing Editor

If you want to do some spring cleaning, the City of Clarksville urges you to take advantage of the Convenience Station, which is open on Saturdays from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m.

Located at the city barn, if you live inside the city limits of Clarksville or Red River County and can show proof of residency – such as with a driver’s license or utility bill – you may dump free of charge.

This service is free for residents only; businesses can still dump but must pay a fee, proportionate to the size of the load.

The fee is between $20 and $40 for six to eight foot trailers stacked up to three feet high, or a pick-up truck bed stacked one to three feet above the edge.

Nine to 12 foot trailers stacked three feet high will be charged between $50 and $80. The cost for 13 to 16 foot trailers stacked three feet high is between $90 and $120.

Asphalt or fiberglass roof shingles will be charged and additional weight feet for each six feet length of load.

Appliances can be dumped, but if they contain CFCs – which is sold by the brand name of Freon – they must be “red tagged”, indicating they have been properly drained of such chemicals by a certified technician, before they can be accepted. This usually includes air conditioners, refrigerators and freezers.

Items not accepted at the convenience station include batteries, tires, paint, hazardous materials, trees and brush.

If you have any question about using the Convenience station, call the City of Clarksville at 903-427-3834.

Thursday, March 7, 2019

Black History Celebration Parade is Saturday

The 2019 Red River County Black History Celebration Parade will be held Saturday, March 9. The line-up will be at 3:00 p.m. on Industrial Blvd, same as last year. You must be there at 3:00 if you want to be considered during the judging. Divisions will be Youth, Largest Riding Club, Best Dressed Cowgirl, 1, 2 and 3rd place floats, Best Decorated Vehicle, 1, 2nd and 3rd.

The theme this year is “Black History You All.” The parade will start promptly at 3:45 p.m. Everyone is welcome to attend or participate.

Thursday, February 21, 2019

Deadline passes for spring election ballot

The deadline passed Friday at 5 p.m. for anyone interested in running for the local city council or school trustee. There will be a school trustee election in Clarksville and a city council election in Avery.

In the case of the Clarksville City Council, incumbents Charlie Wright (Ward 1) Juanita Moore (Ward 2) W.F. “Babe” Higgins (Ward 3) and Chrissy Witmer (Ward 4) all filed again and drew no opponents, so the city will be able to forego an election.

On the other hand, the Clarksville ISD Board of Trustees has two positions open. Incumbents Lanetta Roberts and John McPeters did not run again.

Five candidates will compete for the at-large positions: Michael Turner, Patricia Antonelli, Sterling Dockins, Latreece Hobbs, and Gabby Lewis.

In Avery, there are four seats up for election on the city council and three will have contests.
The Place 1 seat is vacant because of the resignation of Vickie Roseberry. Connie Kedrowski and Lewis “Bud” Callaway have filed to run for that seat.

Kedrowski is currently the council member in Place 3, but she filed to run again in Place 1.
Thomas Chesshire (Place 2) being opposed by Tracey Lambert. Doug Gortney and Peggy Strickland are running for the Place 3 seat Kderowski vacated. Elaine Belt (Place 5) is unopposed.

In the case of the Avery ISD, trustees whose terms are up this year are Brody Baird, John Murphy and Nancy Hendley. All three have signed up for another term and drew no opponents, so the district should be able to cancel the election.

Thursday, February 14, 2019

Wanted Person

The Red River County Sheriff’s Office needs your help locating the man in the photograph.

Luther Don Whitaker of Bowie County is wanted for Burglary of a Habitation, which is a Felony Warrant. Luther Whitaker is 39 years old and is described to be 6’1 inches tall, 210 lbs, with brown hair and hazel eyes.

If you have any information that might lead to arrest of Luther Don Whitaker, contact Lamar and Red River County Crime Stoppers. You remain anonymous, and if your information leads to his arrestyou become eligible for a CASH reward of up to $1,000.

• or www.427tips,com
• 903-785-TIPS or 903-427-TIPS
• Smartphone app P3 Tips

Lamar and Red River County Crime Stoppers will not pay rewards for information provided through any source other than calls to its program. Calls may be made to Lamar County Crime Stoppers by any method mentioned above.

Wednesday, February 13, 2019

Friday is deadline for election sign-ups

Managing Editor

The deadline comes at the end of this week for anyone interested in running for local city council or school trustee.

Per the Secretary of State Election Calendar, Jan. 16, 2019 was the first day to file an application for a place on the ballot and the last day to file is Friday, Feb. 15, 2019.

It’s been very quiet in Clarksville. Four seats are up for election on the Clarksville City Council. They are currently held by Charlie Wright (Ward 1) Juanita Moore (Ward 2) W.F. “Babe” Higgins (Ward 3) and Chrissy Witmer (Ward 4).

City Secretary Tammy Quick said that as of Tuesday afternoon only Moore and Witmer had signed up.

City council seats have two-year terms Applications for city council seats are available at city hall, 800 Main St., from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday through Friday. For more information, telephone 903-427-3834.

The Clarksville ISD Board of Trustees will have two positions open on the May 4, 2019 election day. Incumbents Lanetta Roberts and John McPeters are currently serving on three-year terms which will expire in May 2019.

As of Tuesday afternoon no one had signed up for either seat. Application packets will be available at the Clarksville ISD Administration Office located at 1500 West Main Street, Clarksville, Texas. 

Interested applicants may call 903-427-3891, ext 771 and have an application mailed to them.

In Avery, there are four seats up for election on the city council. The Place 1 seat is vacant as a result of the recent resignation of Vickie Roseberry. Lewis “Bud” Callaway has filed to run for that seat.

The other office holders are Thomas Chesshire (Place 2), who is being opposed by Tracey Lambert; Connie Kedrowski (Place 3), who is opposed by Doug Gortney and Peggy Strickland ; and Elaine Belt (Place 5). Terms are for two years each.

Anyone interested in the Avery City Council can sign up at City Hall, 250 Business Hwy. 82, from 8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. between 8 a.m. and 4 p.m.

In the case of the Avery ISD, trustees whose terms are up this year are Brody Baird, John Murphy and Nancy Hendley. All three have signed up for another term and no one else has. The seats are elected at-large for three year terms.

Anyone interested in signing up for Avery school trustee can go by the administration office during normal business hours, at 150 San Antonio St.

According to state law, qualifications for local office are as follows:

1. Must be at least 18 years of age.
2. Residence – One year in the state and six months in the district prior to filing deadline.
3. Must be a registered voter at time of election.

Saturday, February 9, 2019

Hub hosts community baby shower collection

The Hub Community Center, with the Red River County Pregnancy Care Center, is working together in Clarksville to share a Connection of Kindness with a Community Baby Shower.
This Community Baby Shower will be a community-wide event to collect essential baby items that help soon-to-be mothers by providing them with basic supplies and support needed to give their babies a healthy start, which is critical to the baby's continued health and development.
Shares of Kindness may be dropped off at The Hub Community Center, located at 501 West Broadway, Clarksville, February 1st-28th Monday - Thursday 9:00 a.m. - 3:00 p.m.
Donation items include feeding items, baby bath care items, pacifiers, burp cloths, teething rings, receiving blankets, bottles, diapers, baby wipes, crib sheets, diaper bags, soft washcloths, bottle brush, and bibs.
For more information, contact Catana Yarnell at 903-427-4929 or Casey Weyland at 903-428-0862

Sunday, February 3, 2019

Grief, frustration and gossip can destroy a town

Managing Editor
Family members tend to be very protective of one another. Small town social circles thrive on gossip. Families facing grief and loss lash out at others. When all these factors collide, it can be ugly.
Patricia and I attended the Texas Press Association’s (TPA) annual convention and trade show this past weekend. It was held in Denton.
The president of the TPA is Laurie Ezzell-Brown, publisher of The Canadian Record, a weekly newspaper in the Panhandle. She had to help run and lead the convention while back home, rumors, gossip and Facebook are trying to burn her city down.
Let me explain. In 2016 a teenager disappeared in the city. In December the boy’s remains were finally discovered in a rural area.  A week after the discovery, a long-time local teacher committed suicide.
It’s not clear at all how and why these things are related, although Ezzell-Brown said she believes they are. The family of the dead teenager has openly accused the sheriff of being responsible for the boy’s death, and hired a private detective.
Needless to say, I’m sure you can imagine how serious the gossip and recriminations are, and it’s all being aggravated by Facebook.
This kind of small-town blow-up over an unsolved crime is common enough that it was the crux of a 2017 movie, “Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri”. The mother of a young woman who was raped and murdered buys billboard space to attack the local sheriff’s office over the lack of progress in solving her daughter’s death.
The movie makes some good points, the first of which is that small town law enforcement agencies usually do not have the staff and training to deal with and solve such serious crimes. As far as a bitterly grieving parent is concerned, the entire staff and all the resources of local law enforcement should be devoted to bringing the killer to justice, and they are egged on by troublemakers and fools on Facebook.
But no one wants to raise taxes to increase the resources that would benefit investigations, and trust me, behind the backs of grieving family members there are people who would resent one case or incident usurping the so much of the time and effort of local law enforcement.
“Three Billboards” also brings out another important point, which is that you don’t know what is going on in people’s lives that may affect such an investigation. The grieving mother, who was played by Frances McDormand, doesn’t know the sheriff is dying of pancreatic cancer.
By mid-way through the movie, the sheriff commits suicide rather than face a long slow death by cancer, the billboards have been torched, and Molotov cocktails are thrown at the police station by the mother.
I won’t spoil the movie by giving away any more of the plot, but my point – which is well-made by the movie – is that grief, frustration and gossip can lead to many bad things in a small town.
Everyone needs to stop and think before pointing a finger, shaking a fist, or hitting “post” and making unproven accusations on Facebook.
Facebook is too easy to use and abuse. I’m not sure people realize they can start a discussion that – if carried to its logical conclusion – should end up with a lynch mob or revenge killing.
You may say, “It will never get to that?” How do you that someone who is weak-minded or drunk won’t carry this kind of hate-mongering to its logical conclusion?
Is this what we want for Clarksville? Then please exert a little self-control before you pass along dangerous gossip, on Facebook and elsewhere.

Monday, January 28, 2019

Statement by Clarksville Police Chief Jarrett Ehlinger

On January 24, 2019 at approximately 8:52 pm Clarksville Police, Fire, Red River County Sheriffs Office and Life Net responded to a 911 call in the 400 block of East Broadway Street, Clarksville, Texas.

First Responders found an individual in an unknown type of medical distress. Medical personnel made every attempt on the individual to sustain life; however, first responders were unsuccessful on the individual. The individual did not survive.

At this time there is an ongoing investigation of an unknown / unexplained death. No more information at this time is available.


The Clarksville Times will have a complete and up-to-date story in Thursday's paper.

Sunday, January 27, 2019

Cypress Basin Hospice Awarded CHAP Accreditation

Community Health Accreditation Partner, Inc., (CHAP) has announced that Cypress Basin Hospice has been awarded CHAP Accreditation under the CHAP Hospice Standards of Excellence. By achieving CHAP Accreditation. Cypress Basin Hospice has also been deemed to meet the Medicare Conditions of Participation and is certified . a Medicare provider.

CHAP Accreditation demonstrates that Cypress Basin Hospice meets the industry's highest nationally recognized standards. The rigorous evaluation by CHAP focuses on structure and function. quality of services and products. human and financial resources and long term viability.

Sirnply stated, adherence to CHAP, standards leads to better quality care. By achieving CHAP Accreditation, Cypress Basin Hospice has shown a commitment to excellence; said Karen Collishaw, CHAP President & CEO. "This is the third time Cypress Basin Hospice has achieved CHAP Accreditation, and we are excited to continue our partnership by offering support in its commitrnent to providing quality care and continuous improvement."

Cypress Basin Hospice has been a CHAP accredited agency since 2012 and provides a variety of hospice services to patients and their families in Mount Pleasant, Paris, Sulphur Springs and the 16 county surrounding area of Northeast Texas.

CHAP is an independent, not-for-profit, accrediting body for community-based health care organizations. Created in 1969, CHAP was the first to recognize the need and value for accreditation in community-based care. CHAP is the oldest national, community-based accrediting body with rnore than 9,000 agencies currently accredited nationwide.

For more information about the CHAP Accreditation process. please visit the CHAP website at

For additional information about Cypress Hospice, please contact Niki Haynes at 903-577-1510.

Thursday, January 10, 2019

Sydney the kangaroo hops into the sunset

Courtesy Photo
Cookie and William Sampson with their adopted daughter, Sydney

Managing Editor

One of Clarksville’s cutest – and most unusual – residents, Sydney the kangaroo, passed away last Friday, Jan. 4, 2019.

Her mom, Cookie Sampson, reported Sydney, 17, died of old age and cancer. The average age of a kangaroo is 15.

Sydney Ruth Sampson lived in Clarksville since November 2002, when she was adopted by Cookie and William Sampson. She was well-known over the years as a visitor to schools, day care centers, and nursing homes.

Cookie said adopting the Australian Red Kangaroo was the fulfillment of a dream she held since childhood. “I always wanted one, for as long as I can remember,” she said.

Sydney was named for the Australian city where her ancestors came from, but she was born in the U.S. and sold to the Sampsons by a Texas veterinarian licensed to sell exotic animals.

Cookie said her middle name, Ruth, was taken from the Biblical figure because the name means friend or companion.

Over the years Sydney met many people and made many friends in Clarksville. Cookie said when the kangaroo was new in town, she was quite the novelty.

“The police department asked The Clarksville Times to do a story about her,” said Cookie. “People saw me walking with Sydney on a leash and thought they were seeing things!”

Sexual assault suspect sought

The Red River County Sheriff’s Office needs your help locating the man in the photograph. Jacob Mckindle Benson of Red River County is wanted for Aggravated Sexual Assault, which is a felony. Jacob Benson is 30 years old and is described to be 5’7 inches tall, 165 lbs, with blond hair and blue eyes.

Lamar County/Red River County Crime Stoppers wants to pay you for the information that leads to the arrest of this man. If you can lead investigators to this man, and wish to remain anonymous, you can contact Lamar/Red River County Crime Stoppers. If the information that you provide to Crime Stoppers leads to the arrest of this person, you could be eligible for a reward of up to $1,000 and you will remain anonymous.

Persons with information about this, or any other felony crime can contact Crime Stoppers four different ways, 24 hours a day- 7 days a week and remain anonymous.

1. By phone at (903) 427-TIPS (8477).
2. By going online and logging onto and submitting a tip. There, persons can also get more information about other featured crimes.
3. By logging on to
4.  And with a smart phone by downloading the mobile app;“P3 Tips”.

Visit the Crime Stoppers website for details.

Crime Stoppers will not pay rewards for information provided through any source other than calls to its program. Tips may be made to Crime Stoppers by any methods mentioned above

Constable cleared of charge following arrest

Managing Editor

Red River County Constable Barnaby Resendiz will not face any charges as a result of his New Year’s Day arrest for deadly conduct.

District Attorney Val Varley said he decided to drop the charge after going over all the reports and statements related to the incident.

Resendiz was arrested after shooting a gun indoors, but Varley said his determination was that it was an “accidental discharge.”

“He didn’t commit a crime,” said Varley. “It’s not an offense to accidentally discharge a gun indoors.”
While the Red River County Sheriff’s Office may have had probable cause for the deadly conduct arrest – a Class A misdemeanor - it is the District Attorney’s decision whether to pursue charges, said Varley.

The crucial point is that for there to be deadly conduct, someone has to be “in imminent danger of serious bodily injury, and that didn’t happen here,” said Varley. “There was no reckless behavior.”

The arrest and dismissal should have no effect on the status of Resendiz’s peace officer certifications, he added.

Varley said he was “infuriated” by gossip, on Facebook and elsewhere, that Resendiz received preferential treatment.

“I don’t treat law enforcement and peace officers different than anyone else,” he said, adding that he’s prosecuted many people in law enforcement over the years and sent some of them to jail.

Wednesday, December 26, 2018

Long-time Clarksville benefactor passes away

Nancy Irene Patterson Troike, age 87, of Texarkana, Texas,, formerly of Austin, died Monday, December 17, 2018.

She was born on November 22, 1931 to W.N. “Pat” Patterson and Jessica Mary Barton Patterson in Texarkana, Tx. She was a graduate of Texas High School and from the University of Texas at Austin. She was a research specialist at UT-Austin and a member of First United Methodists Church, Texarkana, Tx.

Nancy was very philanthropic throughout her life. Some of her favorite causes were the Nettie Lee Benson Latin American Library at UT-Austin, Texarkana College, Texarkana Regional Arts and Humanities Council, Texarkana Symphony Orchestra and the American Shakespeare Center.

She was preceded in death by her parents. She is survived by several cousins; Carol Patterson Niemann and husband, Larry, of Austin, Donald McKamy Patterson and wife, Carroll, of Austin, Niram Patterson, Jr. and wife, Bobbye, of The Woodlands, John Kirk Patterson and wife, Caro,  of San Antonio, Emily Patterson Bonner and husband, Bryant, of Texarkana, Susan Patterson Johnson of Austin, Cathy Patterson Carriker and husband, Steve, of Dripping Springs, Will Scott Patterson and wife, Carolyn, of Georgetown, special friend, Ron Mills Of Texarkana, Tx. and many friends.   

A graveside service will be held at 2 p.m. on Thursday, December, 27, 2018 at Hillcrest Memorial Park with Amy Goodroe, Hospice of Texarkana Chaplain officiating, under the direction of the Texarkana Funeral Home.

Saturday, December 22, 2018

Closed for the holiday

The Clarksville Times office is now closed for the Christmas break. We will be open for business as usual at 9 a.m. on Monday, Dec. 31st.
The paper for Dec. 27 has already been completed and will be distributed and mailed to subscribers as usual.
If you need something in the meantime, you can always leave a message at the office number - 903-427-0002 - or send us a message. We will be checking both.
If you need immediate assistance, you can call Managing Editor Lou Antonelli on his cell phone, 903-257-6573.

Friday, December 14, 2018

City Council to meet Tuesday

Notice is hereby given that the City Council of the City of Clarksville shall meet in regular session at 6:00 p.m. on Tuesday, December 18, 2018. The meeting will be held in the Council Chambers of City Hall, 800 West Main Street, Clarksville, Texas. The matters to be discussed and acted upon are as follows:
1. Opening Ceremonies
Call to Order Mayor Ann Rushing
Pledge of Allegiance Chrissy Witmer
Invocation Heath Humphrey
2. City Vision Statement- Pat Smith
3. Roll Call
4. Citizens' presentation: Any citizen wishing to address the Council may do so after rising, giving name and address. The Council may not address any issues not listed on the Agenda, however it may receive information. 
5. Review/approve Minutes of Regular meeting held Tuesday, November 20, 2018 and Special Meeting held December 4, 2018.
6. Review financials/approve payment of bills.
7. Review department reports / updates from Mayor.
8. Discuss and possible action to consider for approval of nominations to a new two-year term to serve on the Red River Appraisal District Review Board beginning January 1, 2019.
9. Discuss and possible action to adopt Resolution 2019-05 to re-appoint Bruce Johnson to the Red River Appraisal District Board of Directors.
10. Discuss and possible action to adopt Resolution from TX DOT for future bridge replacements.
11. Discuss and possible action to add Kathy Barber as PRIDE Representative to Central Business/Main Street Committee under Ord. #97-10-1018.
12. Discuss and possible action to clarify under which conditions a city owned vehicle can leave the city.
13. Discuss and possible action to lease purchase sewer machine from Patterson Equipment Company.
14. Discuss and possible action to approve advertising notice of accepting bids for fire engine.
15. City Manager / Council / Mayor Comments.
16. Convene into Executive Session Pursuant to the following designated sections of Texas Government Code Annotated, Subchapter 551, the Council will enter into executive session to discuss the following items: a) Section 551.074 [Personnel Matters to deliberate appointment, employment, and duties] regarding (i) Duties and role of City Manager, (ii) City Manager Interviews with potential candidates, and (iii) Hiring of a qualified candidate.
17. Reconvene into Regular Session and take any action necessary as a result of the Executive Session.
18. Adjournment.

Thursday, December 6, 2018

Feds indict local men for conspiring to distribute meth

TEXARKANA, Texas – Three Red River County men have been indicted for conspiring to distribute methamphetamine in the Eastern District of Texas, U.S. Attorney Joseph D. Brown announced Monday.

Brian Bradley Beers, 47, of Avery, Kevin Wayne Guess, 45, of Annona, and Billy Carl Webb, Jr., 51, of Clarksville  - along with James Wayne Johnson, 30, of Kemp - were named in an indictment returned by a federal grand jury on Nov. 14, 2018.

Beers, Guess, and Webb were arrested on Nov. 30, 2018, in Red River County. Johnson was taken into federal custody on Nov. 19, 2018.

According to the indictment, in June and July of 2018, Beers, Guess, Webb, and Johnson conspired to possess with intent to distribute 50 grams or more of methamphetamine. Additionally, the indictment alleges that during that time, Johnson possessed 50 grams or more of methamphetamine with intent to distribute and that Beers, Guess, and Webb used communication facilities in facilitating the conspiracy.

If convicted, Beers, Guess, Johnson, and Webb face a minimum of ten years and as much as life in federal prison.

This case is being investigated by the Texas Department of Public Safety, the Red River County Sheriff’s Office, and the Mt. Pleasant Police Department. The case is being prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorney Jonathan R. Hornok.

Friday, November 30, 2018

Annual Christmas Parade steps off Monday

The annual Clarksville Christmas Parade, sponsored by the Clarksville Retail Merchants Association, will be held Monday. Dec. 3.

There is no specific theme for this year's parade. Entrants are reminded that float entries should have a Christmas theme, but not have a live Santa Claus on the float.

The parade will assemble on North Walnut Street –instead of Industrial Street as in previous years – and leave from in front of the Courthouse and proceed down Walnut Street to Main.

It will then proceed to Locust Street, turning left to return to the lot behind the Red River County Public Library Parking.

Floats are asked to be assembled and be in place at 4:30 p.m. for judging. The Clarksville High School Band will lead the parade.

The lighting of the downtown lights and the Christmas Tree on the Square at 5:30 p.m. will signify the start of the parade. There is no parking on the square that evening.

Prizes for the parade will be awarded for first, second, and third place. A prize will also be awarded in the decorated vehicle division. All vehicle entries must be decorated with a holiday theme. No four-wheelers may be entered in the parade.

The parade will culminate with the arrival of Santa Claus in the traditional fashion on a Clarksville fire truck, which will be followed by his visiting with youngsters in the center of the Square.
The Clarksville High School Band will play on the Square after the parade. Bags of candy for those children 12 years of age and under will be distributed on the square.

Following the Parade, a Chili and Stew Supper will be held in the Christian Education Building of the First Presbyterian Church, sponsored by the Historic Red River County Chamber of Commerce.

For more information, please contact the Historic Red River County Chamber of Commerce at 903/427-2645.

Wednesday, November 21, 2018

Happy Thanksgiving from everyone at The Clarksville Times!

Downtown merchants plan Open House on Saturday

The Historic Red River County Chamber of Commerce is holding its 7th Annual Christmas Open House on the Clarksville Square Saturday, Nov. 24, starting at 10 a.m.

Support your local merchants, refreshments will be served. The participating businesses are Cheryl’s Fashion, Vintaj Cowgirl, High Cotton Boutique, Simply Southern, Gateway Antiques, Victoria’s Antiques, Pride, Radio Shack and Clarksville Florist.

Saturday is being celebrated nation-wide as Small Business Saturday. First observed in the United States on November 27, 2010, it is a counterpart to Black Friday and Cyber Monday, which feature big box retail and e-commerce stores respectively.

By contrast, Small Business Saturday encourages holiday shoppers to patronize brick and mortar businesses that are small and local. Some small business use Small Business Saturday to help capitalize on the boost in foot or online traffic, as most customers in this time period are actively shopping for the holidays.

Small Business Saturday is a registered trademark of American Express. The first event was sponsored by American Express, in partnership with the non-profit National Trust for Historic Preservation. In 2010, the holiday was promoted by American Express via a nationwide radio and television advertising campaign.

Wednesday, November 14, 2018

Harsh weather puts dogs in danger of euthanasia

Courtesy Photo
On Death Row: These puppies’ mother has already been euthanized and they face the same fate is someone doesn’t step up to adopt them immediately.

Managing Editor

With temperatures now dropping below freezing, the fate of homeless and abandoned dogs in Clarksville now hangs in the balance.

With the city shelter and local vet clinic running out of space as they take in dogs who otherwise would die of exposure, they may face little choice but to humanely euthanize the dogs.

“The Red River County Humane Society (RRCHS) has been providing spay and neuter assistance for over 20 years, yet people would rather dump or abandon puppies and adult dogs than be responsible pet owners,” says Humane Society President Beth Vogel.

The mother of the litter shown in the photo was euthanized because her owner was too irresponsible to have her spayed, said Vogel, “so she lost her life due to a person’s selfishness.” The puppies are at the Clarksville Animal Hospital. All told, there are 12 puppies in two litters who need rescue.

Another dog, a five-year old black lab female, also needs a home immediately and is danger of being euthanized.

The Humane Society will help with the vaccinations and spaying or neutering of any of these dogs. If you can help with any of these adoptions needed immediately, call the Humane Society at 903-966-2275.

Vogel said she would like to see some changes in city law.

“The Humane Society has asked the city to pass a spay and neuter ordinance, but no one seems to think the lives of animals are important,” she said. “The city and county both should address this long-standing problem rather than remain in the Dark Ages.”

“Most towns and cities have spay and neuter ordinances,” she continued.  “Clarksville and the county need to get with modern times and follow their example.”

“Animal lives do matter,” said Vogel. “They feel pain, neglect, abuse, cold and heat just as much as humans,” she said. “The lives of animals are important.”

The Clarksville Times has a fund to help pay for adoptions in the memory of Millie Antonelli, who passed away in May. If you like some help with the cost of adopting, call Lou or Patricia at 903-427-0002.

Thursday, November 1, 2018

City seeks public’s help with ongoing sewer problem

Managing Editor

If you were asked what is a common thing that clogs up waste water pipes, you would probably answer “grease”

And you wouldn’t be wrong. But as a result of changes in household habits over recent years, grease poured down the drain is no longer the most common thing jamming up sewer lines.

“Eighty percent of clogs now are caused by baby wipes,” according to City Utility Director Matt McAdoo.

Grease is an intermittent problem, less serious during warmer months, notes McAdoo. Now that the weather is turning colder, it will become more of a problem as the grease solidifies in the mains. But baby wipes have become an constant and serious problem, and McAdoo and the City of Clarksville are asking for your help.

“Please don’t flush them,” says McAdoo.

Toilet paper is not a problem because it dissolves and is biodegradable, he said. But baby wipes do not dissolve. Even when labeled that they can be flushed down the toilet, “they really can’t,” said McAdoo.

Also called wet wipes, wet towels or moist towelettes, the cleaning products are becoming a problem in sewerage lines nationwide.

Every week the city waste water treatment plant has to collect buckets of them, along with other non-biodegradable products that are flushed which shouldn’t be, said McAdoo, such as condoms, feminine hygiene products and dope bags.

He noted that every week four pumps at the waste water treatment plant will each yield up a five gallon bucket of clogged material, consisting mostly of baby wipes.

The Clarksville sewage plant only has a screen for incoming waste water, notes McAdoo, and not a mechanical device that would separate solids, called a clarifier. Right now the city can’t afford a clarifier, which would cost approximately $200,000. That’s why city employees have to haul out bucketfuls of material clogging up the pumps by hand.

Each month when McAdoo makes his report to the city council, the baby wipe problem is usually at the top of the list for problems with city utilities.

McAdoo, along with the Mayor and city council members, urges you to throw wipes in the trash where they belong and save the wear, tear and man hours needed to deal with them in the waste water system.

Friday, October 26, 2018

It's Homecoming tonight

Clarksville High School Homecoming will be held Friday, Oct. 26. The members of the Homecoming Court are, front row: KeeAutra Moore, Carolina Salinas, Asjah Griffin, Deont'e Tavie; back row: Markeath Garcia, Tyrell Hobbs, Alana Puckett, Rickerius Williams. The King will be crowned during the pep rally at 3:00 p.m. that afternoon at the Clarence L. Nix Gym.  The queen will be crowned pre-game 7:00 p.m. at the New Century Club Field.

Friday, October 19, 2018

Magnolia Brush plans new warehouse

Managing Editor
The Clarksville City Council Tuesday night granted Magnolia Brush Manufacturing a variance to the local fire code to facilitate the construction of a new warehouse.
General Manager Scott Adams asked for the variance at a new 47,000 square foot warehouse to be built at 1001 North Cedar Street.
Under current code, the new warehouse would require a sprinkler system, but he said the city’s water supply is inadequate. He asked for a variance to the sprinkler requirement.
The warehouse will be used for shipping, inventory and receiving and have a “limited number of employees,” said Adams.
He said with many doors plus one side of the building being composed of nothing but loading docks “there’s plenty of exits.”
He said he was making the request for the variance “because we want to move ahead and get the building built.”
Adams said the city attorney said location could be considered to be “grandfathered” because none of the other Magnolia warehouses have sprinklers and the new warehouse would still be less than 50 percent of the size of the entire complex.
Adams noted Magnolia has 94 employees. Council members approved the request for the variance unanimously.
“Thank you for continuing to invest in Clarksville,” said Mayor Ann Rushing. “We’re proud that you are so willing to expand.”
In other action at Tuesday’s meeting, the council:
* Approved paying Pender Water Wells of Texarkana for Well #5 repairs.
* Approved the Clarksville EDC's recommendation to reimburse $25,000.00 to the Tourism Committee for wayfinding signage fabrication and installation, and finding a public purpose is met in the promotion of the City for economic development.
* Approved a resolution proclaiming October 23-31, 2018 as Red Ribbon Week.
* Approved a resolution proclaiming November 5-9, 2018 as Municipal Court Week
* Approved an ordinance fixing Water and Sewer Rates at the same rates as the preceding year.
* Approve the Clarksville Economic Development 2018-19 Budget.

Sunday, October 14, 2018

Former teacher pleads guilty of theft, will repay $33,576

Managing Editor
A former teacher in the Avery ISD, Brooke Nicole Jackson, 38, pled guilty on Tuesday to a second degree felony charge of Theft by a Public Servant.
The plea bargain follows an investigation by the Avery ISD in August of the illegal appropriation and/or expenditures of student activity funds. Jackson was suspended at that time.
The plea bargain was entered by District Attorney Val Varley with Sixth District Court Judge Wesley Tidwell at the county courthouse Tuesday. Attorney Dan Meehan was the public defender for Jackson in her court appearance.
The second degree felony carries a ten year sentence, which will be suspended for five years of supervised probation. Jackson is ordered to make restitution of $33,576 to the Avery ISD, and also do 200 hours of community service.
She was also ordered to pay $355 in court costs and a $50 Crimestoppers fee.
 Jackson was required to serve ten days in a state jail, and was given credit for time already spent in jail. Red River County Jail records indicate Jackson was booked in Oct. 1.
At the time of the original investigation in August, Avery ISD Debbie Drew said “Avery ISD expects each individual educator and employee to conduct oneself with integrity and to be a model of excellence for students.”
She continued the district wants to assure taxpayers “we are being good trustees of their money.”

Friday, October 12, 2018

Red River Charities Banquet is Saturday

Times Correspondent
Plans have been finalized for the 15th annual Red River County Charities Inc. banquet that will take place this Saturday, Oct. 13, in the Clarksville High School cafetorium starting at 6:00 p.m. Guest speaker for the occasion will be Clarksville ISD Superintendent, Kermit Ward.
A large crowd is expected to be on hand for the event that will also feature entertainment, prize drawings, and a meal featuring a choice of ribeye steak or baked chicken and loaded baked potatoes. 
Tickets are still on sale for the banquet, and can be purchased from any committee member, with the committee consisting of Hazel English, Chandra Johnson, John McPeters, Beverly Nelson, and Birda Rosser. The charge for admission is $12 for a single ticket and $20 per couple. Tickets can also be purchased on the day of the banquet at the door with the price for admission remaining the same. 
Sponsors for the event this year include the First National Bank of Tom Bean-Clarksville Branch, First Federal Community Bank, and Paris-Lamar County Health District. 

Friday, October 5, 2018

Thinking on an overcast day about The Ring-a-Ding Girl

Managing Editor
Every small town in America has its own local civic festival. If you happen to be the county seat, you get to host the county fair once a year, but at the very least everybody has some occasion to exhibit local pride.
Clarksville’s Fall Bazaar is this Saturday, if you hadn’t heard. Actually, if you haven’t heard yet, I’m kind of curious whether that rock you live under is igneous, sedimentary or metamorphic (yes, I stayed awake during my high school geology class.)
There are multiple articles in this issue about the various events and opportunities you have to entertain yourselves. In my case, I’ll be one of the seven local authors in the library. I’ll have copies of my award-nominated alternate history for sale, “Another Girl, Another Planet”.
Science fiction and fantasy is a bit of a specialized genre, so when I attend author events at occasions for the general public I don’t have high expectations for sales. It’s different when I attend literary conferences. But stop on by and say howdy!
You could probably surmise that with my literary interests, I have always been a big fan of The Twilight Zone, especially the original series which ran from 1959 to 1964. I’m not old enough to have seen the show during its initial run, but it’s been in syndication ever since.
I recently saw an episode called “The Ring-a-Ding Girl”, and it comes to mind because of the bazaar coming up. You see, the crucial plot point in the story is that a Hollywood celebrity returns to the small town she grew up in, and proceeds to mess up plans for the town’s annual Founders Day Picnic.
Bunny Blake is known at the Ring-a-Ding Girl in Hollywood because of her fondness for that kind of jewelry. As the episode starts, she and her personal assistant are packing for an airline flight across the country.
Bunny mentions that it is the day of the annual Founders Day Picnic in the small town she grew up in. Unlike the stereotypical Hollywood celebrity who has nothing good to say about the “common people” they grew up with, Bunny has only good memories about her hometown, and remembers they even took up a collection to pay for her trip to Hollywood when she kicked off her acting career.
In the next scene, her sister back homes opens the door and finds Bunny has made a surprise visit One of the skills of Rod Serling and The Twilight Zone is that it could tell an engrossing story well enough that you would forget plot inconsistencies. As you watch the episode you forget to remember that Blake was on a jet and not supposed to be going home that day.
Bunny visits a number of people she knew well when she was growing up, and everyone is happy to see her, but then she throws everyone a curve by saying she will put in a personal appearance at the local auditorium – at the same time as the Founders Day Picnic.
Everyone tells her that will quash the picnic, but she firmly – but nicely – sticks to her guns.
As the time for both the picnic and her appearance nears, a violent storm breaks out over the city. Meanwhile, the show cuts to a scene of the pilot in the jet that Bunny and her assistant are on, telling them there’s rough weather ahead. Then we see the two women. The assistant is worried, but Bunny seems unconcerned.
Back at the house, “Bunny” is talking to her sister and nephew and getting ready to go to the auditorium, there’s a commotion as emergency vehicles rush by the house. The sister and nephew rush to the window, and they don’t notice Bunny doesn’t. Instead, she softly tells them goodbye and then steps outside into the pouring rain, and with a look of resignation on her face, disappears.
A minute later a local policeman calls and tells the sister a jet crashed in the storm and onto the city park, but almost no one was killed on the ground. They had gone over to the auditorium to see Bunny.
Then he says he found Bunny’s corpse in the wreckage, despite the fact many people had seen her in the city just a short while earlier.
There’s a traditional superstition that if you are very close to your own death, you soul may leave your body early. If you see that “double” – in German it’s called a doppelganger – it’s a very bad sign, because it means your death is imminent.
By then end of the episode we realize that once on the jet Bunny Blake was doomed, and it was her doppelganger that appeared in the city and in a last gesture of kindness, arranged so that the fewest number of people would die at the picnic grounds when the jet fell out of the sky.
One of the things the Twilight Zone did so well, thanks to Rod Serling, was to accurately reflect America. Anyone who lives or grew up in a small town knows how important an event like the Founders Day Picnic would be. (If you ever want to see a touching depiction of a small town America that was already gone by 1960, see the episode “Walking Distance”.)
The Twilight Zone always had a twist in its plot. In this case, one twist is that Bunny Blake is a fairly level-headed celebrity who still has the simple touch and remembers growing up in her small town with such fondness.
The key to a successful twist ending is that there are hints along the way, and it doesn’t come completely out of nowhere. By the conclusion of the episode, as “Bunny” disappears in the rain, it all makes sense in its own way.
I’m probably the only person in Clarksville who makes a connection between the Fall Bazaar and The Twilight Zone. But then again, I’m nothing if not original.
Or as Patricia puts it, “You’re just weird.”

New event kicks off Fall Bazaar Saturday

Managing Editor
A new event is being held this year in conjunction with the Red River County Historical Society 39th annual Fall Bazaar on Saturday, Oct. 6.
The 5K/1M run organized by the Clarksville ISD is an attempt to restore a sense of pride, create student ownership and responsibility, and provide a fun service for our community, according to Supt. Kermit Ward.
The cost of this event is $15, and that will cover the cost of refreshments for participants, T-shirts, supplies, and medals for division winners.
“Please come out and support your local school district and city,” said Ward.
The run starts at 8:30 a.m. and the walk at 8:40 am.  Participants should arrive early to check in. T-shirts will be available on site for those who pre-registered.
The starting line will be at the northeast corner of the downtown square, at Broadway and Locust.
The route is as follows:
 - Proceed south on Locust to Main (Highway 82).
 - Right (west) on Main and proceed to Industrial Blvd.
 - Right on Industrial and proceed north to Patman Dr.
 - Right on Patman and proceed east to MLK.
 - Right on MLK and proceed south to Stacey Dillard Blvd (SDB).
 - Left on SDB and proceed east to Cedar St (Hwy 37).
 - Right on Cedar and proceed south to Broadway.
 - Left on Broadway and proceed east to the finish line at Broadway and Walnut.
The one-mile route will be available Saturday morning.
“The success of this event depends entirely on you and your participation,” said Ward.