• July 16, 2019

Odessa American: Anniversaries

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GOOD NEWS: Teddy's for Bear Patrol

HSB Insurance Services recently donated approximately 100 teddy bears to the Odessa Police Department. They will be used for the Odessa Teddy Bear Patrol Program, which began in 1990.


Midland-Odessa Symphony & Chorale thanks retiring board members for their six years of service to the board of directors. Board members are, from left: Ann Parish, Carol Chandler, Nash Dowdle, Kathleen Rector and Floyd Roundtree.

GOOD NEWS: Speech teacher’s publication solicited by academic journal

MIDLAND Nestled in an office in Midland College’s Allison Fine Arts Building is a speech instructor who is approaching the methods of teaching speech and communications in a rather untraditional manner. Her work and body of research are now being publicized in conference and national academic journals.

GOOD NEWS: Senior Living
GOOD NEWS: Donation
GOOD NEWS: Center for Big Bend studies recognized in Texas Legislature

Standing on the dais are, from left to right: Jorge Nunes, Senior Anchor and News Reporter with Univsion 41, San Antonio; William E. Millet, filmmaker and lifetime member of the CBBS; Andy Cloud, director of CBBS; Spanish Ambassador (retired) Miguel Angel Mazarambroz; and Dan Arellano, Bexar County Historical Commission member. All of the men are strong supports of CBBS who helped with the MOUs and the legislative process.

GOOD NEWS: Center for Big Bend studies recognized in Texas Legislature

ALPINE The Center for Big Bend Studies (CBBS) of Sul Ross State University in Alpine was recognized May 25 on the floor of the Texas House of Representatives for two separate Memorandums of Understanding executed between the Center and entities in Mexico and Spain.

GOOD NEWS: Center for Big Bend studies recognized in Texas Legislature

ALPINE The Center for Big Bend Studies (CBBS) of Sul Ross State University in Alpine was recognized May 25 on the floor of the Texas House of Representatives for two separate Memorandums of Understanding executed between the Center and entities in Mexico and Spain.

GOOD NEWS: Joint Operation

The Odessa Police Department, Texas Department of Public Safety and Union Pacific Railroad, conducted a joint operation last month at Dixie Boulevard and Meadow Avenue for motorists who ignore railroad signals and warnings. As a result of the operation, 23 citations were issued for railroad crossing violations. The public is urged to adhere to all railroad crossing laws to include: Stopping at the designated spot, waiting until traffic arms are all the way up and the signal has stopped flashing, disregarding traffic signal, and don’t stop, stand or park on railroad tracks. These laws are not only a state law, but a federal law also. The ramifications can have civil penalties if a railroad crash occurs involving any of the aforementioned. Freight trains traveling 55 miles per hour take more than a mile to stop, which is why drivers are urged to stop in designated areas when railroad signals, flashers and gates indicate a train is approaching. The event is part of Union Pacific’s Crossing Accident Reduction Education and Safety (UP CARES) program, which brings together communities in a collaborative and caring effort to promote railroad crossing and pedestrian safety.

GOOD NEWS: Safe 2 Save Awards

Medical Center Hospital recently conducted a Safe 2 Save competition for the Odessa Police Department officers. Sirena Watts, MCH representative, presented awards June 11 to three OPD officers. Officer Luis Villapando received first place, Cpl. Robert Johnson received second place and Sgt. Casey Reed received third place. Safe 2 Save is a free driving app that rewards you for not driving distracted. For every 2 minutes that you drive undistracted you get points and those points can be used toward rewards such as free food, spa, oil changes, etc. Medical Center Health System sponsored a competition between Odessa Police Department and Odessa Fire Rescue for the month of May and prizes were given to the top winners. At the end of the competition the OPD had accumulated more than 52,000 points and OFR had accumulated more than 160,000 points. Together this is 156,000 minutes of undistracted driving or around 2,600 hours plus 103 days. Between the two organizations, there was a total of 76 participants. More information can be found by going to https://safe2save.org/.

GOOD NEWS: Manin Sehgal


GOOD NEWS: MC grad looks forward to serving others through healthcare

MIDLAND Manin Sehgal has wanted to be a doctor since he was in the 7th grade and read his mother’s book about the cardiovascular system and how angioplasty can be used to clear cholesterol. “I’m not sure why I was so fascinated with the heart,” said Sehgal. “I was just interested in healthcare, in general. My mother is an ayurvedic physician, and as a child, I would listen to her explain how a holistic approach to medicine can help enhance one’s lifestyle. My dad’s Informational Technology degree, involving CDSS [Clinical Decision Support Systems] has allowed me to see how technology revolutionized healthcare, such as insurance documenting. My parents were both role models in guiding me to choose a medical career.”

GOOD NEWS: Sul Ross receives grant for study abroad

ALPINE Sul Ross State Univ. has been selected to receive a small grant from the U.S. Department of State for their 2019 Capacity Building Program for U.S. Study Abroad.

GOOD NEWS: Softball, men's tennis earn SAAC Spring Sportsmanship award

ALPINE The Sul Ross State University softball and men's tennis teams were the spring recipients of the ASC Student-Athlete Advisory Committee (SAAC) Team Sportsmanship Awards in an announcement May 29.

GOOD NEWS: OPD Honor Guard

Grand Prairie Police Officer Albert Castaneda.

GOOD NEWS: OPD Honor Guard
GOOD NEWS: OPD Honor Guard

The Odessa Police Department Honor Guard attended at the funeral of Fallen Grand Prairie Police Officer Albert Castaneda, 38, on June 13 in Grand Prairie.Castaneda was killed in the line of duty when he was struck by a vehicle and thrown from an overpass. The funeral took place at the Potter’s House in Dallas.

GOOD NEWS: UW announces Community Impact funding

United Way of Odessa recently announced $1,094,000 of Community Impact funding to 31 health, education and self sufficiency programs in Ector County.

GOOD NEWS: Judo Champs

Two Odessa Boys & Girls Club Judo team members won on May 18 at the Nagase Cup Judo Championships. Nahla Feuer, 10, placed third in the girls 9- and 10-year-old division and Tika Kenfield, 6, placed third in the girls 7- and 8-year-old division. From left to right: Coach Michael McMillan, Coach Francisco Lira, Nahla, Tika, Coach Trevor Grogan and Coach J.J. Medrano.

GOOD NEWS: Promotion

Matt Malone was tested on May 9 for Shodan/1st Degree Black Belt by Michael McCleery, Seveth Dan, and John Taylor, Fourth Dan. Malone passed his promotion test and was presented his Black Belt by McCleery.

GOOD NEWS: Senior Living

Donna Greaves sang various gospel and Patsy Cline songs.

GOOD NEWS: Senior Living

Parks Senior Independent Living residents celebrated April birthdays with a Birthday Party on April 25. Birthday celebrants are, from left: John Clarke, Bettie Hawkins and Shirley Farmer. Not pictured: Margie Baxter. Los Fabelos catered the meal and Market Street Bakery provided the cake.

GOOD NEWS: Betenbough Homes meets market demands

Every year Builder magazine surveys the nation’s top builders, both public and private, and collects data to identify the top home builders in the U.S. The rankings are based on annual closings and gross revenue. Betenbough Homes has moved up on the Builder magazine Top 100 list to number 52 in 2019 with a total of 1,013 home closings across West Texas in the past year, which is a record number of closings for the home builder. Two hundred and thirty-nine of those 1,013 families closed on their homes in Odessa in 2018.

GOOD NEWS: Bustin for Badges
GOOD NEWS: Dual credit student’s work gets published in university journal

MIDLAND “I was not the little girl who wanted to be a ballerina; I wanted to be Indiana Jones,” admits Early College High School at Midland College (ECHS@MC) student Dusty Ellis. “I have always wanted to be an archeologist, but now after my success at Midland College, I am starting to look toward anthropology as well.”

GOOD NEWS: Scholarships
GOOD NEWS: Texas Scholars

This year’s Texas Scholars had a total of 16,629 volunteer hours from 428 students. Texas Scholars is a workforce development program for high school students to be able to volunteer within the Odessa community. The seniors with the most hours over the course of 4 years from each high school are Makayla Welch from Odessa Career & Technical Early College High School with 885 hours, Hailie Zundt from New Tech Odessa with 815 hours, Natalie Benavides from Odessa High School with 736 hours, Tyeliyah Jones from Permian High School with 663 hours and Haley Lavergne from Falcon Early College High School with 383 hours. Texas Scholars students completing at least 50 hours of volunteer work over the course of their high school career and maintain at least a 2.75 grade point average, could receive a scholarship from Odessa College or The University of Texas Permian Basin.


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