We hope everyone is having a great extended Labor Day weekend. It's a great time to think about the contributions of American labor for the things we now take for granted - like weekends, living wages, and workplace safety.
These posts (every week or two) are a chance to share links to various stories elsewhere on the internet that we think might be of interest to our readers. Everything is on-topic for these posts, so feel free to leave a comment if something is on your mind.
The Lewisville ISD Education Foundation is hosting its “Fork and Pencil” fundraiser on Saturday, September 6th. Tickets are $75 per person or $130 per couple. Although the website does a poor job explaining exactly what it is, this is a sort of a gala dinner with live music, and catered by a variety of restaurants. There’s a silent auction too.
The Farmer football game Friday night against Rowlett was disappointing. The Farmers could have pulled off the win, but two bad snaps leading to a blocked punt killed those chances. But you couldn't ask for better weather Friday night, so it was hard to believe it's still August. Here's a Farmer Football Preview
Everything you need to know about trash service in Lewisville is on the city’s website. If you have a complaint about your trash pickup, please call Waste Management at 972.315.5400, because the rest of us are tired of hearing your bitching on social media. We have 22,000 households, and on any given week there will be problems, late pickups, misunderstood rules, etc. If all of them take to bitching on Facebook and Nextdoor, that’s all we’ll ever deal with, and the answer is always the same: Call Waste Management, and let them fix the problem.
In Ferguson, Missouri, court fines and fees add up to about 20% of the city’s budget, giving the city quite an incentive to get people tied up in the justice system. Incredibly, the judge keeps observers out of the court, and sometimes hears cases prior to the scheduled time, or locks the courthouse doors, resulting in people getting penalized for missing a court date.
For the past week, since Taylor Swift released her new single “Shake it Off”, it’s been a constant earworm. Dimensions Dance Company filmed a flash mob dance to this tune at a Lewisville Raising Canes restaurant, which resulted in Ms. Swift “hyperventilating”. If they had just invited me to show off some of my moves, I’m sure she would have needed a paper sack to breathe in.
An account has been set up for Mr. Freed, by some friends of the Freeds. The person heading this up is George Gober, long time resident of Lewisville. The money will be used strictly for Freed's court costs, attorney fees, defense investigators, and anything pertaining to his cost for defending himself. Those wanting to contribute can go to Ciera Bank in Flower Mound, 1801 Cross Timbers Rd. Make out checks to the Defense Fund for Brian Freed. any questions you can call Mr. Gober at 972-977-0618 and he will gladly answer any questions.
After discussion here at LTJ, we removed a story from the site and from our Facebook page today due to a very negative reaction in the community.
It's not often that we remove items from the site - especially when they are factual and fair, which we thought the article was. The reason we removed it is that the discussion on social media had vilified one of the unnamed people in the story to the point that the online discussion seemed like a lynch mob waiting to happen. The breaking point was when the discussion turned to personal bullying of others who expressed opposing viewpoints.
We do this service to spread the facts, and increase our community's understanding of one another and the institutions that make our community tick.
I'm just so incredibly disappointed right now to have had this forum and our work used in such a negative way.
Perhaps at some point, the story will come back into the archive, but for now we think it's best for all involved to cool off.
On Monday, August 18, Police Officer Tim O’Hare and Texas Department of Public Safety Corporal Dy Norng were recognized at a Lewisville City Council meeting for their official actions on April 24.
On April 24, Lewisville Dispatch received a call from a suicidal person and plotted the cellular caller around the intersection of the 121 Tollway and Interstate 35E. The Tollway Authority was also notified and dispatched State Troopers to the area. Lewisville Officer Tim O’Hare arrived and contacted a male sitting on a cross member between two bridges with his leg over the railing. The individual kept shifting his weight which made officers believe that the subject was, in fact, planning to jump. Officer O’Hare continued to engage the man while DPS Corporal Dy Norng approached the man from behind and shoved him at Officer O’Hare. Officer O’Hare quickly grabbed him in a bear hug and pulled the man to safety.
The Police Department’s Awards Committee met to review this incident and recommended Officer Timothy O’Hare and DPS Corporal Dy Norng receive the Life Saving Award. If not for their quick response and immediate actions, this individual would have most likely jumped to his death and possibly even hurt or killed others below. Pictured from left, are Police Chief Russ Kerbow, Officer Tim O’Hare, DPS Corporal Dy Norng, and Mayor Dean Ueckert.
Texas Department of State Health Services this week confirmed the city's fifth positive West Nile Virus mosquito trap for 2014. Three positive samples came from a trap collected this week from the 1700 block of Edmonds Lane, the site of the first confirmed sample last week. The fifth was confirmed from the 800 block of College Parkway.
Due to the history of positive tests in the area, plus a high-risk senior population living in a retirement center adjacent to the testing site, ground spraying was conducted this week in a half-mile radius of the Edmonds location. The spraying that took place Aug. 18-19 had a significant impact on the mosquito population.
Ground spraying will be conducted next week in a half-mile radius of the newest positive test site, on College Parkway. Spraying is scheduled to take place Monday and Tuesday, Aug. 25-26, starting at 10 p.m. each night. A map of the spraying area is available on the city website, cityoflewisville.com.
City crews are regularly walking through and visually inspecting creeks and drainage channels to look for potential mosquito breeding sites. The city has nearly a dozen workers in the Parks and Animal Services divisions who are state-certified to apply anti-larval dunks or localized pesticide to curb the mosquito population. Residents also are encouraged to report standing water on city-maintained property by calling Lewisville Animal Control at 972.219.3478.
The Texas Department of Health operates a toll-free WNV information line in both English and Spanish at 888.883.9997, and has expanded information posted on its Web site at tdh.state.tx.us. Denton County Health Department also has online information about West Nile virus or you can call 940.349.2907.
Monday is the first day back to school for the 2014/15 school year in Lewisville ISD. Since residents have been out of the habit of driving in school zones for the summer, the Lewisville Police Department wants residents to be mindful of school zone speeds and keep their eyes on the road instead of on their mobile devices. Crossing guards will be on duty, and drivers are required to obey their signals.
Areas in and around schools will be very congested before and after school. You should consider an alternate route or allowing extra time if you travel near a school during the drop-off and pick-up times, particularly the first week of school.
School Zones Be mindful of students heading to and from school. The Lewisville Police Department is increasing officer presence in school zones and around bus stops. Chief Kerbow, referring to the school zone flashing lights, says “pay attention to the yellow lights before you see the red and blue.”
School zone times are determined based on the schools they serve. Elementary Schools: 7:15 am – 8:15 am and 2:45 pm – 3:45 pm Middle Schools: 8:00 am – 9:00 am and 3:45 pm – 4:45 pm School Zones protecting both Elementary: 7:15 am – 9:00 am and 2:45 pm – 4:45 pm High Schools: 7:45 am – 8:30 am and 3:15 pm – 4:00 pm
The school zone at Garden Ridge and Bellaire has unique times compared to the other school zones within the city, because it mirrors the contiguous school zones within Flower Mound. The school zone in that area of Garden Ridge and Bellaire runs from 7:00 am to 8:00 am in the mornings and 2:30 pm to 3:30 pm in the afternoons.
Passing a Stopped School Bus The Texas Transportation Code says that a driver must stop, when approaching from either direction before reaching a school bus displaying alternately flashing red lights. Drivers are not required to stop when traveling in the opposite direction on a divided roadway. The fine for passing a school bus is $878.
Crossing Guards The school crossing guards are part of the police department family and work very hard to keep the children safe. A Lead Crossing Guard supervises 34 guards. The Lead Crossing Guard reports to the Traffic Sergeant. The authority of crossing guards is granted by the transportation code. The school crossing guards work in extreme weather and heavy traffic. The police department says they will not tolerate drivers disregarding theschool crossing guards. Please look out for them as they look out for the kids.
Cell Phones The Texas Transportation Code says that a driver may not use a cell phone while driving in a school zone unless: the vehicle is stopped, the device is hands-free, or the driver is making an emergency call to fire, police, or for a medical emergency.
Resident Tom Boughton shows an area where hundreds of beer bottles and cans had collected on Lewisville ISD property since the summer began
By Steve Southwell
Littering and other crimes were getting on the nerves of some residents of the Hedrick Estates neighborhood just south of Hedrick Middle School. Frustrated with what they felt was an inability to get results after calling police, neighbors Tom Boughton and Cassie Kelly took to social media to report the problem and ask for help.
Boughton posted on the neighborhood social media website Nextdoor.com that every Saturday night, a wooded area behind his house on Marchant Place was getting littered with beer bottles, cans, and cases. Kelly posted on the City of Lewisville Facebook group, that she wanted to see if anyone would donate trash cans that she could place in the areas in the hopes that maybe if they couldn’t stop people drinking in the fields, they could at least maybe collect some of it in trash cans to make it easier to clean up.
The Lewisville Texan Journal contacted Kelly and Boughton, who graciously showed us the problem area and explained some of the issues they have had in the area.
Boughton, whose back yard backs up to the Hedrick property, showed us an area between some trees where litterers had left hundreds of beer bottles and cans, and their associated boxes. There was evidence of someone having set up a fire pit that still had some partially burned material in it. Cigarette boxes and cigar wrappers could also been seen. Boughton said that on Saturday nights around midnight, a group of Asian kids that he thought to be middle-school to high school aged, and maybe a couple years beyond that tend to show up at the site mostly on foot, but sometimes by car. Both neighbors said they suspected other unsavory activities going on, and other residents posted on Nextdoor that they had items stolen.
Most people know the power of words and yet still use them in devastating ways to destroy reputations, futures, and families. This has been done to Brian Freed by reports in this publication.
While this letter is not about me, I need to tell why I feel qualified to speak out. I have known Brian Freed since he was my student at Hedrick Middle School a number of years ago. I taught in the Lewisville Independent School District for over twenty years, spending time as department chairman at three middle schools and being recognized as Teacher of the Year for the district in 1991-92. I have been appointed to and served on four Denton County Grand Juries as well as serving on various civic boards and committees. I have taught adult Bible study on both Sundays and Tuesdays at First Baptist Church of Lewisville for many years also. I include this information only as evidence that most people consider me to be a reliable citizen.
I have recently been disturbed by words used as character assassination against my former student and friend, Brian Freed. I have known him from his years as a boy to those as a man to be a person of integrity. In his student years, he was admired by both students and teachers. On one occasion, the teachers were asked to choose a student to be a representative from Hedrick Middle School to an event for American Airlines; Brian was the unanimous choice.
I have continued to watch Brian Freed's growth as he has become a young man and now I am also acquainted with his wife and each of their three children. I have seen these parents involved in every aspect of their children's lives, seeking to rear them to also be kind, contributing young people.