September 2013

         A forum will be held at the Multi-Center, 3810 West Fuqua on the first Thursday September 5th.
          Recently a crew were doing a test on the water content of the soil along Hwy 521 near Bob’s. The test is necessary for the designers to complete the design to widening 521 to four lanes between Riley Road just south of Beltway 8, over the railroad track and FM 2234 to Clear Creek, which is the dividing line between Harris and Fort Bend County.
30% of the design has been completed. The current letting date for contractors is August 2014. For more info, email
The President’s 2013 budget request includes a 2.5 percent increase, above the 2012 budget, for the Department of Education—the largest increase for any domestic agency in the proposed budget. But 45 years of ever-increasing federal education spending and control has failed to improve academic outcomes. The bureaucracy with 4,200 employees has added layer upon layer of red tape on states and school districts, requiring school leaders to demonstrate compliance with more than 150 federal education programs.
Yet the students of the United States are ranked 27th in math, 22nd in science, and 33rd in reading compared with other nations in 2012-2013. Long way from the top.
Is lack of money the problem? An extra $98 billion in stimulus was given to the Dept. of Ed. in 2009 and $10 billion for “EduJobs in 2010.” Besides a request of 2.5 increase over last year’s budget of $77.4 billion, the president also requests $60 billion to spend on new programs.
The proposal for National standards will further expand Washington’s role in education and further remove parents from decisions about the content taught in local schools.
Our Constitution does not give the Federal government authority to educate. Therefore, according to the Tenth Amendment, education is the duty of the states or the people.
History shows that when education is controlled by a few people, a few people gain control over all the people.
No body is arguing the importance of education, just who should do the job. One size does not fit all.

Since Champion merged with Nalco in April, the opportunity and finances are available to expand the facility. According to Chris Gonzales, a boiler project was approved. To provide a parking area for the contractors, a parking lot across Kentucky street west of the plant will be constructed made from caliche, a sedimentary rock. Trucks to haul the caliche will travel down Dallas street.      
         Two of the largest industries in the Almeda/Fresno area, Nalco Champion and Azko-Nobel, host Community Advisory Panel (CAP) meetings about once a month to keep citizens informed and address any of their concerns. At the meeting in August, plant managers explained what they are doing to keep their employees safe. If the employees are safe inside the plant, the surrounding community is safe.
There are many regulations to govern the chemical plants. The Safety Manager at Akzo Nobel, , Daniel Trevino, said the Dept. of Homeland Security just sent him a 450 page questionnaire to fill out within 30 days as part of an audit of the plants security. DHS is just one organization that oversees chemical plants.
Besides complying with the rules and producing quality products, the companies also strive to be good community members. Akzo Nobel annually gives scholarships for students who want to study Science, Technology, Engineering, or Math (STEM) programs. Their employees also help with science fairs in the schools and work with Star of Hope. While they do help financially, they are looking for projects that involve their employees.
The CAP is open to guests and observers, and periodically seeks new members.  For information about meetings, please contact Mary Jane Naquin at 713-993-9317 or
         According to Dr. Ken Blackwell, a black pastor, “the NRA National Rifle Association was founded by white Christians to supply blacks with guns and train them to protect themselves from the Klu Klux Klan after the Civil War.”       Blackwell was among a group of leaders of the black community at the Center for Urban Renewal and Education (CURE), news conference on gun control.
         Ken Hutcherson, former NFL Dallas Cowboy, noted that ten times more blacks get killed in the cities with the most gun control laws. He thought putting up a sign in your front yard saying this is a gun free house made as much sense as the idea of signs at schools saying it is a gun free zone.
To other speakers gun control laws bring back memories of the days of Jim Crow and Black Code laws. To see what other black leaders said type CURE in your search engine.

    Mrs. Mary McManus 
If you were in the third or fourth grade at Almeda School in the mid ‘60’s, you may remember the teacher with strawberry blonde hair and twinkling blue eyes.
She now uses those blue eyes to cross-stitch, when she isn’t bowling or traveling or teaching school.
This year she is starting her 63rd year of teaching elementary children. Born Dec. 23, 1930 in Missouri, she graduated from high school at the age of 16 and began teaching when she was 18, after two years of Junior college. While teaching she had a part time job in a theater, was active in her church, took extension courses at night and during the summer to get her degree and got married when she was 19.
To round out her life she had a child while living in Missouri. The family moved and McManus had another child in Kansas and then one more child in Oklahoma all during the summer months, so she didn’t have to miss very many days in the classroom as she taught in all three states.
In 1964, the family moved to Texas and McManus got a job with HISD as a substitute teacher. One year later she was a full time 3rd and 4th grade teacher in Almeda where two of her children, Annette and George, attended school.
         McManus then taught at Madding until she retired- a word that doesn’t seem to have much meaning to her. She taught two more years at Madding. The principal couldn’t afford to keep her on since her salary had increased each year. Mrs. Cage, principal at Almeda, hired her where she has taught writing for the last ten years.
She might limp from a bad back and an unsatisfactory knee replacement, but that doesn’t keep her from traveling to Alaska, Canada, Florida, etc to play in bowling tournaments for three leagues. She is slowing down and only playing in two this year. Does she play on Senior citizens leagues? “Senior citizens bowl during the day. I work,” she explains.
Although an average bowler in mixed leagues, she loves it. And she keeps her mind sharp by playing in bridge tournaments. The rest of the time she just sits around the house doing her cross-stitching.

         Think of one person, living or dead, who you most admire. Would it be a sports hero, a president, a movie actor/actress, the Pope, Billy Graham, or some other famous person?
         Did anybody think of a garbage collector, a waitress, the man who shines the presidents shoes, or a person who washes the dirty bodies of those in nursing homes.
         Some of you may have thought of Jesus. Think about what he did and said. He touched the filthy body of a leper. He said he came to serve. He took off the nasty sandals of his disciples after they walked through dusty and dung covered streets. He then washed their dirty feet-Jesus the most famous, powerful person to ever set foot on earth.
His enemies never denied that he could make the deaf hear, heal the crippled, give sight to the blind, and raise the dead to life. They knew he had fed thousands with only a boy’s lunch yet his enemies hated him. This Jesus was going to turn their lives upside down, if they didn’t get rid of him and his crazy ideas: love your enemies, do good to them that hate you. And this Jesus also put himself on an equal with God, Almighty God, who created the heavens and the earth. Would God stoop to wash the feet of humans?  Unbelievable,  but as many as do believe in His name He gave the power or right to become children of God. John 1:12
Will we some day see that God honors more people who get their hands dirty serving others than those who are being served?
Their churches are being burned, their homes pillaged, and members have been killed. They ask that we pray – pray they will not retaliate, but do what Jesus has taught, to love your enemies.  
Fear none of those things which you shall suffer. …
Be faithful and I will give you a crown of life. Revelation 2:10
To all you hunters who kill animals for food, shame on you; you ought to go to the store and buy the meat that was made there, where no animals were harmed. This public announcement comes by way of an article in a San Francisco paper. Where else could you find someone so intelligent?
In our climate a fall garden is much easier to work in. Many plants only need 55-60 days to produce. So things like green beans which can’t take a frost need to be planted soon. Turnips are actually sweeter after a light frost. Kale and spinach can grow right through the winter, so can carrots but the tops will freeze back. Oct. is the best time to set out strawberry plants for early spring berries. Broccoli, cabbage, cauliflower and English green peas also like cold weather.

         HHS Secretary Kathleen Sebelius today announced up to $99 million in competitive funding under the Maternal, Infant, and Early Childhood Home Visiting (MIECHV) Program. Funding for the MIECHV program is provided by the Obama Affordable Health Care Act. What does that mean in plain English?
         Various organizations will be in competition to find “eligible” households that the government will want to send someone to visit whether you want a visit or not. The families that are considered “high risk” or “eligible” will be families where mom is not yet 21 years old, families where someone uses tobacco, families where children have low-student achievement, developmental delays, or disabilities, and families with individuals who are serving or formerly served in the armed forces, including such families that have members of the armed forces who have had multiple deployments outside the United States.
Successful applicants will receive grants to expand services, as well as promote innovation and infrastructure development within their comprehensive, early childhood state systems.
There is no reference to Medicaid, in the bill meaning  any family for any reason could be eligible for a visit. The federal government will set the standards for raising children and will enforce them by forced home visits. And you thought your home is your castle?
Part of the program will require massive data collecting of private info including all sources of income.
It is time for Congress to defund Obama care before even more money is spent brainwashing people into believing it is a good thing. Most of us still don’ know what else is in this 2,000 page Affordable Health Care Act. Until we do know what’s in this bill, it needs to be delayed. We can’t afford to let it go into action unless we know.
         Regardless of your age you need to exercise. Senior citizens might want to start slowly on weight lifting. Use items around the house like a sack of potatoes. The first week lift a five pound sack up ten times. The next week lift up a ten pound sack ten times. The third week put a potato in the sack.
On December 5, 1963, about 200 area residents started a Mason lodge in Clo LaFleur’s red barn behind his real estate office on Fuqua. It was a barn. Prokop Lumber Co. gave them scraps of sheetrock. Billie Bockel greatly improved the lodge by hanging the 18 inch wide pieces. Out of the 200 charter members only eight are still alive: Arlen, Earl Bockel, Fred Bones, Coggins, Hodgett, Garnett Lewis, Lloyd Parker, and William Scott.
In 1970, the members managed to build a nice building and named it after the Grand Master in Texas who had died in 1950
Arthur Earl Bockel was the 5th and 50th Master. This year his son Robert better know as Bob is the Master. Many of the original members have died and the lodge is in hopes that men will look at their web site and get interested in joining as they celebrate their 50th year.
         The first meaning of racism given in the dictionary is a belief that race is the primary determinant of, or determines, human traits and capabilities and that racial differences produce an inherent superiority of a particular race. The second meaning of racism is racial prejudice or discrimination. It is time all races stop passing our ignorance, hate, and prejudices to the next generation. We are all made in the image of God and each person is precious in his sight. When we look down on someone else, we are criticizing God’s workmanship.

 Proposed 28th Amendment to the U.S. Constitution: "Congress shall make no law that applies  to the citizens of the United States that does not apply equally to the  Senators and/or Representatives; and, Congress shall make no law that  applies to the Senators and/or Representatives that does not apply equally to the citizens of the United States.

Fear none of those things which you shall suffer. …
Be faithful and I will give you a crown of life. Revelation 2:10

 FEEDBACk: Thanks to the Arcola City Police Dept. and Rosie Rojas, who was the event coordinator for the 4th of July celebration. Please accept our apologies for not mentioning you in last month’s issue.
When Skeet Donaho read about Willie Keyworth feeling cold when the temperature was 100 degrees, it brought back memories of the happiest days of his life working in the hayfield in the blazing sun as a teenager. Fun stuff like eating lunch under a trailer for a little shade. No such thing as a tree in sight. Then lifting  135 lb. bales of hay, (most square bales weighed around 60 lbs.) up through a window in his Uncle Oliver’s hay barn. Skeet sweat so much that the tops of his leather boots got soaked.   “The good old days.”
Gilbert Garcia was reminiscing about the years when he was a barber in Almeda. He was wondering if anybody knows where Gilbert Shoppe is. Give him a call at 713-694-0890. If he isn’t out fishing with his grandson, he would like to hear from you.
Thanks Rick Martini & Ken Moore
Ken Moore called to tell us that Rick Martini, with Action Trucking, provided a huge dumpster, filled it full with two dead trees, and hauled it off. Ken who is 73, has mostly by himself, kept the Almeda Cemetery looking better than South Park. But some things he can’t do and he is very grateful to Martini who has helped more than once. All of us who enjoy seeing a spot of beauty when we pass the cemetery as we drive east on Beltway 8 appreciate what these men do without receiving any pay whatsoever. Ken says if you type in Almeda Cemetery Houston Texas several web sites come up. At the bottom of one site it gives a place to click to get more info by reading Back Yonder In Almeda. Click and Amazon pops up where you can order a used copy for $19. OR you can get a new, signed copy for $12 by calling the author at 713-433-1098 or picking a copy up at Debbie’ Barber Shop next to Parker’s Hardware on Almeda Rd.

Mobile BBQ Kitchen                                                 
 16X7 trailer 7ft. Pit/smoker 4 sinks                             
Call 281-451-0538 for more details.                                        
Social Security Checks are now Federal Benefit Checks.
And you thought the money you paid taxes on that they took out of your pay check for social security was yours to receive when you retired. Oh No. The government spent all that money but they are so nice they are going to give you out of the goodness of their heart a Federal Benefit.
Dorothy Roco, one of the few natives who has lived almost her entire life in Almeda was an aspiring trick rider. She knew what it was  to grow up on a treeless open range way out in the country on Fellows Road. Her father, Joe Bruns, was a cattleman. By marriage or blood Dorothy was kin to almost everyone on the east side of the railroad tracks. She walked to school on a dirt road, but well remembers going to a dance on Almeda Road or Hwy 521. The road was roped off as the community celebrated the completion of a concrete ribbon of highway in 1938 which stopped barely past Parker’s Hardware. Dorothy loves to travel and has been all over the world and to places most of us never even heard about, but she always came back to the best place on earth, home. Hope you have many more happy birthdays, Dorothy. 
ROBERT S. "BOB" MARTIN III , died May 2, 2013 in Sugar Land, Texas. Born December 12, 1924 in Luling, TX, Bob's family moved to Pierce Junction when he was 3 years old. He attended San Jacinto High and Rice Institute before entering the Navy, where he served in the Pacific during WWII. Bob contributed information on the history of Pierce Junction to Our News.
 ...concerning them which are asleep, sorrow not as those who have no hope. I Thessalonians 4:13
The tax rate for fresh water will remain the same -75cents per hundred.
Vinson Library
3810 West Fuqua 832-393-2120 Open Tue. & Wed. 10-6 Thurs 12-8 Fri. 1-5 Sat. 10-5 Closed Sun. & Mon.
Multi-Center open Mon. –Fri.
Sienna Branch Library,
8411 Sienna Springs Blvd will be closed Sept. 27th for Fort. Bend County Fair Day. September is library card month. Get a free card and use all the online services 24/7. Computer classes Sept. 4, 10, 11 & 17th*Digital Photos 101 Sept. 17th *Create a website Sept. 18th & 24th. *Learn how to use for free the Ancestry Library Edition and Family Search in Genealogy Online class Sept. 19th at 10am. To register and get more info, call 281 238 2952 or go to and click on Calendar.
George Memorial Library will be closed until Sept. 29th.
Almeda Moe
Moe decided life would be more fun if he had a pet. He went to the pet store and saw a centipede. He was fascinated as watching the l00 tiny feet as the centipede moved. He bought the bug which came in a little white box to use for his house. He took the box back home, found a good spot for the box, and went to bed. The next morning he decided he would start off by taking his new pet to church with him. Moe asked the centipede in the box, "Would you like to go to church with me today? We will have a good time." There was no answer from his new pet. This bothered him a bit, but he waited about 30 minutes and then asked again, "How about going to church?”
No response. Moe waited ten more minutes and decided to invite the centipede one last time. This time he put his face up against the centipede's house and shouted, "Hey, in there! Would you like to go to church with me and learn about God?"This time, a little voice came out of the box, "I heard you the first time! I'm putting my shoes on!"

Concerning Syria, Obama said, “Sometimes what we've seen is folks will call for immediate action, jumping into stuff that does not turn out well, gets us mired in very difficult situations." He warned that America could get "drawn into very expensive, difficult, costly interventions that actually breed more resentment in the region."
Let’s pray that he will let the Syrians work out their own problems 

Back Yonder In Almeda
To get the only book on the history of the Almeda area send $14.50 to Our News  P. O. Box 450336 Houston, TX 77245-0336   For more info on contents of 160 page book email            

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