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Blazing a trail to justice Out of the chaos that preceded her, Erleigh Norville Wiley was appointed Kaufman County Criminal District Attorney.

6. Art Connection  They make a living in other endeavors, but art is their passion.

10. Healing Horses Tucked away off the beaten path are a pair of equine retreats providing a unique form of therapy.

19. Terrell Celebrates the Jubilee Way ***********ECRWSSEDDM***

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 Spring is in the air — that means it’s festival time. Check out details on Terrell’s Heritage Jubilee and others in the region.

Spring 2014 /Vol. 4 Issue 1

Taking great care of Terrell. Quality care, close to home. At Texas Health Presbyterian Hospital Kaufman, the employees and physicians on the medical staff provide our neighbors in Henderson and Kaufman Counties with quality care, commitment and compassion. We have proudly served our community for over 35 years and now offer a broad array of health care services, from free childbirth education classes to diabetic management programs. Located just a short 15 minutes down south Highway 34, Texas Health Kaufman is ready to care for you.

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Doctors on the medical staff practice independently and are not employees or agents of the hospital. Š 2014

From the Publisher


a slice of

thing from pig races and live entertainment to a variety of hands-on children’s activities that keep folks coming back year after year. Magic is in the air as youngsters young and old are captivated by the creatively of hand sewn quilts to carnival rides and games.

New season, new look Welcome to spring and the spring 2014 edition of Kaufman County Life magazine! Just as spring brings a new look to the world around us, we are proud to bring a new look for this magazine to you with this edition. Kaufman County Life has gone through a makeover and we hope you like the new look. A big thanks in this effort goes to Terrell-based graphic designer Erika Dorsey, who has provided her designing skills and sharp eye in bringing about the re-design. We hope you like what you see. As always, we welcome your input and suggestions.

Blazing trails The world changed drastically in early 2013 for Kaufman County residents and officials. As three people were gunned down in cold-blooded murder, terror reigned. Besides the lives of former District Attorney Mike McLelland, his wife Cynthia, and Mark Hasse, former assistant district attorney, and their immediate families it is likely that one of the lives most impacted was that of Erleigh Norville Wiley. Appointed by Gov. Rick Perry to the post left vacant upon Mike McLelland’s death, Wiley took over at a time of uncertainty, turmoil and terror as the fate of the lives of many county officials appeared uncertain. Journalist Gary E. Lindsley spent time with Wiley digging into the past and path that led her to the role she holds today. I think you’ll find Gary’s story insightful.

Equine magic

Artist passion On a more casual note, a story in this edition of Kaufman County Life looks at several residents who put their imagination and passion to work creating art. Writer Paul Bottoni visits with several members of the local art community on what drives them to create in a variety of artist mediums — from sculpture to watercolors and oils. For others who may have their own artist bent, Paul tells of groups that provide both support and an avenue for networking like the North East Texas Art Alliance. I think you’ll find there are some hidden treasures and some talent that you might not have been aware of right here in your own backyard.

Festival time As the chill of a long winter is left behind and we start to focus on getting outdoors there is one sure venue that can bring throngs of people together — the many festivals and special events the area provides. Freelance writer Rachel Stallard provides us with some insight into the origins of Terrell’s own Heritage Jubilee. It may have started out more than three decades ago almost as chicken scratch. But the event has grown into a diverse festival that annually draws hundreds of vendors, barbecue cooks, classic car enthusiasts and fun seekers. Rachel shares the allure of every-

A little different kind of magic is going on at a pair of Kaufman County equine facilities that specialize in using the calming nature of horses to bring about healing in the young and some not so young. According to the founders of Jake E’s Riding Round Up and Prospect Mountain, riding and simply being around horses can help people deal with everything from autism to war injuries and trauma. Paul tells us that while both centers have roots in different parts of the county, they both have similarities. Prospect Mountain and Jake E’s were founded by grieving mothers in search of peace — which they have found at least in part, by helping others.

Cook’s Corner When she’s not busy working her full time job as the head of Terrell’s Riter Hulsey Public Library, Rebecca Sullivan may be found in her own kitchen creating taste-tempting recipes that family and friends rave about. Gary Lindsley recently visited with Becky, who offered to share one of her tried and time-tested recipes for readers who may want to see what all the fuss is about. We hope you enjoy getting to know a little more about your neighbors and the many activities going on in the world in which you work, live and play. — Mike Elswick, Publisher


Table of Contents

Blazing a trail to justice

Volume 4 Issue 1 | Spring 2014

Publisher & Editor Mike Elswick

Art Director Stephanie Elswick

Contributing Writers Paul Bottoni Gary E. Lindsley Rachel Stallard

Photography Paul Bottoni Don Johnson Gary E. Lindsley

Creative Editor & Layout Erika Dorsey

Ad Design Patrick Brown

Advertising Sales Patty Barringer Stephanie Elswick

Cook’s Corner Readers may never have heard about one of Rebecca Sullivan’s favorite recipes, Macho Mostaccioli Sauce on Pasta. But after reading about the reception it has gotten from a variety of guests at various functions, your mouth may be savoring the aromas she describes.


Contact 150 Ninth Street, Terrell, TX 75160 972-563-6476 Kaufman County Life assumes no responsibility for the content of articles or advertisements, in that the views expressed therein may not reflect the views of the publisher, employees or contributors. This publication and all of its contents are copyrighted.





Art Connection

Healing Horses

Listening to artists throughout the area tell their stories and share their passion may provide some insight into the creative process.

There’s a reason that Madison Garrett, a senior at Scurry-Rosser High School keeps coming back to volunteer at Prospect Mountain, an equine therapy center.

Erleigh Norville Wiley never intended to become Kaufman County’s top law enforcement official. But since being appointed by Gov. Rick Perry about a year ago to fill the position left after District Attorney Mike McLelland was killed, she has taken the lead to ensure justice is done.


26. Scene & Heard  Tips on tax needs, art, quilting and visiting Forney.


Terrell Celebrates the Jubilee Way From a reenactment of an old West shootout to carnival fun and tons of arts and crafts, Terrell’s Heritage Jubilee has something for just about everyone.

23. Festival Fun If you can’t get enough of the festive atmosphere at Terrell’s Heritage Jubilee, there are plenty of other events to captivate your interest — just a short jaunt away.

27. Wine & Dine  Authentic Mexican, tasty beverages and juicy steaks.

28. Health & Wellness  Free denture exams and the best in quality health care.


Kaufman County Life | Feature Volume 4 Issue 1 | Spring 2014

Art connection Evening Praise by Kyle Wood Story and Photos by

Paul Bottoni

Kaufman County’s art community Their names may not carry the weight of Picasso or Rembrandt or Jackson Pollack, but the artists that call Kaufman Country home have undeniable talent in a bevy of artistic methods.


uring the day, they are homemakers, law enforcement officers and business professionals, among other things. Some are even pursuing art as a career. But they are all parts of a burgeoning art community in and around the county that features numerous artists groups and individual artists that network to further their knowledge and showcase their work. Those artists have a penchant for an array of artistic mediums — from sculpture to watercolors to oils. Kyle Wood was about 12 6


years old when he gained a serious interest in oil paintings. During his childhood, Wood would see the works of his great aunt at various family members’ homes, and they caught his eye. “I began doing these little paint-by-numbers sets, and my great aunt saw I was modifying them a bit,” Wood said. “She said I could do my own painting and encouraged me. She suggested I take some classes.” He did just that in 1984, taking lessons from a Dallasbased artist. His interest in oil paintings didn’t diminish, and soon he sought to learn more. “I started out in her chil-

dren’s class. We did a lot of varieties like acrylic painting and colored pencils,” said Wood in his sunlit, white-walled studio that stretches along the back of his Terrell home. “I was interested in oil paintings, so I talked

“When I get into a painting it’s like I’m on a little vacation from everything else.” — Cindy Fritz

Kyle Wood

with her and showed her some pieces, and I ended up joining her adult class. I was probably about 14 years old.” Wood has received numerous accolades for his work, and is represented by Dutch Art Gallery in Dallas. He prefers to depict landscapes and architecture. Using oil-based paints provides more vibrance and color, he said, and is easier to work with than other methods, such as watercolors, which dry quickly after being applied to canvas. “It has its challenges but I think it’s one of the more forgiving mediums,” he said. “It’s also one of the better mediums if you’re trying to get a photographic look to a painting.” One of Wood’s largest influences was renowned Texas artist Dalhart Windberg, who is best known for his landscape and still life oil paintings. Wood has continued attending workshops and classes throughout the years, and eventually had the chance to learn from Windberg himself. “I’ve admired his work for

years even before I got a chance to take a workshop with him,” Wood said. “It was very rewarding to get to learn from him.”

Passion to Career Cindy Fritz has been painting ever since she can remember. She began when she was barely old enough to walk, and her interest in art only expanded as she grew up. “Even in high school and since then it has been therapeutic for me,” Fritz said. “When I

get into a painting it’s like I’m on a little vacation from everything else.” So the she turned her passion into a career. Fritz attended Grinnell College in her home state of Iowa, where she majored in art. After working a year at a printing company, she returned to college to become an art teacher, this time enrolling at the University of Iowa. She has since taught at private schools and home school — both art and other subjects — and teaches private art classes, as well. Fritz mainly paints with watercolors or pastels — the former because of their transparency and the latter because of the control she can have with them. “You don’t have a wiggly brush with pastels, and they’re so fixable,” she said. Fritz is mainly drawn to landscapes, though she’s been known to paint other subjects. “I seem to like birds and turtles a lot. I’ve noticed I depict them a lot,” Fritz said. “I also love reflections and water.” Fritz has received notice for her work, winning contests at

Cindy Fritz


Kaufman County Life | Feature Volume 4 Issue 1 | Spring 2014

the State Fair of Texas and the Kaufman County Fair, among other places. She will open her first solo art showing — it will run from March 18 to May 1 — at the Forney Arts Council gallery at Crumbzz in Forney. About 140 pieces of Fritz’ art will be on display. Fritz currently has four courses she teaches at her home. Along with teaching, she volunteers twice a week to help tutor at-risk elementary students after school with First Baptist Church of Forney. Fritz said she enjoys teaching kids and helping them discover their creative sides, but she too remains a student, attending a weekly watercolor class to learn new techniques. “There’s always something new to learn; you never stop,” she said.

— though patience is required. “It’s a love-hate relationship because it’s so challenging,” Lalumia said. “When you get it right, though, it’s great. There’s just something about the glow you get from watercolors.” Lalumia takes pictures — lots and lots of pictures. From those photos, she sketches a piece before putting brush to canvas. She draws inspiration from a number of subjects — landscapes and the family dog, to name a few. One painting originated during a morning stroll. When she and her husband lived on Houston Street, they’d take

“When you get it right, though, it’s great. There’s just something about the glow you get from watercolors.” — Debra Lalumia Kaufman resident Debra Lalumia owes her passion for art to a friend who didn’t want to attend a painting class alone. “I just fell in love with it,” she said of painting. “I was hooked.” That was about 30 years ago, and now that her children are growing up and starting new chapters of their lives, Lalumia has turned her sights back on painting. Her passion is for watercolors — she started out with that medium and has stuck with it since 8


Debra Lalumia

walks early in the day, during which they’d pass a grove of crepe myrtles each time. “I never gave it a second thought until one morning — it was just the way the light hit those crepe myrtles — I had my phone with me and snapped a photo of it so I could do a painting of it,” Lalumia said while sitting behind a desk in her studio on the second floor of a 19th-century building on one of the corners of Kaufman’s downtown area. She and her husband own the building and renovated it about eight years ago. See ARTISTS, Continued on pg. 29

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Kaufman County Life | Feature Volume 4 Issue 1 | Spring 2014



Volunteers at Prospect Mountain walk alongside 12-year-old Seth Huston as he rides “Buddy” on a Saturday morning in February.

It’s fitting that Kaufman County, with its plethora of equine ranches and pockets of peaceful places, is home to two therapy centers — both of which were founded by grieving mothers in search of peace — that use a different approach to mental and physical rehabilitation.

Story and Photos by



Paul Bottoni


ucked away in southern Kaufman County, Prospect Mountain has been providing horse therapy services since it was opened in 2008 by owners Bob and Teri Lisenby. The center is part of Professional Association of Therapeutic Horsemanship International.

She immediately turned around and checked it out. “I met with Teri and we spoke for nearly an hour,” she said. Huston’s 12-year-old son, Seth, is autistic. He began attending sessions at the center following that meeting of a few years ago, and has shown improvement both physically

“My vision is that we’re a mining town, we find value in everyone and we mine for the gold in all these kids.” During sessions, students ride on horses, which mirror emotions and are used to help rehabilitate people with physical and mental disabilities. The experience is tailored to the child, from the horse they’re paired with to the saddle they use. There are 20 horses at the center, and the clients typically ride the same one each time. For instance, only one person rides “Sonny,” while many ride the maternal and calm “Lady.” About 38 children attend sessions at Prospect Mountain, from kids with autism to ones with brain and spinal chord injuries. Some come from as far as Duncanville and Dallas. Some families can’t afford to pay full price, so the Lisenbys work out a deal to make sure the children can attend sessions. “I’m not going to turn anyone away,” Teri said. “We’re here to make sure every child can ride.” Stephanie Huston was driving the country roads of Kaufman County one day when she saw a sign on the road advertising Prospect Mountain.

in clients, including Seth, even in the short amount of time she’s spent volunteering. “Seeing the difference made here and hearing about it are two very different things,” she said. Madison Garrett, a senior at Scurry-Rosser High School, has volunteered at the center since the summer after her eighth grade year. She visited the center at the encouragement and behest of her mother. One of Madison’s family friends worked in special education and Madison would visit after school on occasions.

Bob & Teri Lisenby

and with his attitude. “He does this John Wayne-type pose when he rides where he puts his hand on his hip,” Huston said. “He took to Teri right away.” Melanie Nelson, a nursing student with Trinity Valley Community College who has volunteered with other students at the center for several weeks, said she has seen improvements

“I’d hang out with the kids there and it was really cool,” Madison said. “I’ve been [volunteering at Prospect Mountain] ever since I first visited. I grew attached to the kids almost instantly. I’ve gotten to know these kids like they were my brothers or sisters.” The grounds are meant to resemble an old-time Western


Kaufman County Life | Feature Volume 4 Issue 1 | Spring 2014

town, which ties into the center’s mission. “My vision is that we’re a mining town,” Teri said. “We find value in everyone and we mine for the gold in all these kids.” It’s still a work in progress. The center needs a covered arena to allow clients to ride when the elements are bad. Bob, who works in the construction industry, has built all of the structures slowly but surely over the years. “I’ll give him a picture of what I want it to look like, and he’ll build it,” Teri said. The Lisenbys’ youngest daughter died in August 1999 in a 4-wheeler accident. Teri searched for a way to cope with the tragedy. She found some sense of peace in the form of a 13-year-old horse that a woman approached Teri with an offer to sell. After initial hesitations, Teri finally purchased the black stallion named Oz — really it was “The Otherside,”

“We’ve been able to stay open, and I haven’t turned a child away yet. I won’t.” — Teri Lisenby but Oz soon stuck as a nickname — and is still around today. “I was able to heal and grieve for my daughter through that horse,” Teri said. Teri, who has been a nurse since the early ’90s, worked at a hospital when in 2007 she decided she could make more of a difference doing something else. “I wanted to be able to make 12


Like Prospect Mountain, Jake E’s relies on volunteers to operate. Photo courtesy of Jake E’s

a difference that was lasting,” she said. So she went home and searched on the Internet the keywords “horses,” “healthcare,” “children” and “teaching,” and it came up with therapeutic horseback riding. She then gained certification and training to start a nonprofit therapy center. “Everything just kind of fell in place,” Bob said. The center depends on donations to keep it running, and volunteers to help with sessions. “We’ve been adding a little bit at a time, and the Lord has provided us with our needs,” Bob said. “We’ve been able to stay open, and I haven’t turned a child away yet,” Teri said. “I won’t.”

Finding peace Similar to Prospect Mountain, the founding of Jake E’s stemmed from tragic circumstances — in April 2010, founder

Jana Ewing’s 3-year-old son, Jacob Eli, died in an accident. Ewing was in search of a way to find peace, and so she opened a horse therapeutic center and named it after her late son. The goal of Jake E’s is to heal its clients through P.E.A.C.E.— “People thru Equines Achieving Courage and Empowerment.” The center has certified P.A.T.H.-certified instructors, and helps clients — who range from children to veterans — face both physical and mental issues, from anger problems to disabilities. Now in its third year, Ewing has seen numerous success stories, such as a woman in her 70s with multiple sclerosis who came to the center to strengthen one side of her body. She eventually gained the confidence and strength to buy her own horse and a house. “She’s fulfilling one of her dreams,” Ewing said.

A past client was having problems reading and getting along with her parents. She is now consistently on the A/B honor roll and has an improved attitude, Ewing said. “We have a high school student that has been in a wheelchair who has cerebral palsy. Since she’s been coming to us, she was able to take 40 steps at her physical therapy session and her therapist feels it’s a direct result from the horse therapy.” The center is also utilizing Equine Facilitated Mental Health and Learning to increase opportunities for its clients. This allows a certified specialist to work with therapists and other mental health professionals to help patients. Jake E’s dedicates two days a week to this effort. The nonprofit organization is funded through donations, grants and a yearly fundraiser. Jake E’s relies on a corps of volunteers to help it operate, but has also seen support from outside Kaufman County. Students from Southern Methodist University’s engineering school designed and constructed an

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“Whenever they are around the animals, you can see their eyes change and breathing rate change. There is such a peace and calmness that they gain.” — Jana Ewing electric lift for Jake E’s, which was unveiled in May 2013. The center was in need of a method to hoist its adult clients onto horses. “Not only will we be able to use this with our regular riders, but now we’re really ready for veterans as well,” Ewing said in an interview after the unveiling. “[The SMU students] are a part of this place now, and have an effect on everyone who comes out here. They far surpassed what we wanted this lift to be able to do. It’s really above and beyond what we need.” The center hosts two 12-week sessions in the spring and fall, and a six-week summer session in June. Clients pay $40 per hour session. Because of a lack of a covered arena, Jake E’s can’t work with clients during the hot summer months and harsh winter ones. The center is also looking to expand its services to veterans with such problems as posttraumatic stress disorder. “Whenever they are around the animals, you can see their eyes change and breathing rate change,” Ewing said “There is such a peace and calmness that they gain.”

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Kaufman County Life | Feature Volume 4 Issue 1 | Spring 2014

Blazing a trail to justice Story and Photos by

Gary E. Lindsley

Judge Erleigh Wiley transitions to Kaufman county’s top law enforcement position.


rleigh Norville Wiley started 2013 just as she had since 2002 — presiding over cases in Kaufman County Court at Law. As the County Court at Law judge, she heard both civil and criminal cases, including domestic abuse and child protective services cases. On Jan. 31, 2013, everything changed for Wiley, courthouse employees, Kaufman and the county. That was the day, at about 8:40 a.m., Kaufman County District Attorney Mark Hasse was brutally slain in the Kaufman County Courthouse Annex building parking lot. Hasse was walking to the courthouse to meet with public defender Andrew Jordan about a police case. As he walked



Kaufman County DA Wiley stands in the 86th District Courtroom.

toward the sidewalk, a masked man walked up to him and shot him in broad daylight. He did not survive. Wiley’s husband, Aaron, who is an assistant U.S. attorney with the Major Crimes Division of the Northern District of Dallas, found an Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms agent outside his office when he got to work that morning. “He asked me if I had talked to Erleigh,” Aaron Wiley said. He said he had before leaving home, but the agent asked if he

had spoken with her since then. He had not. “He said there was a shooting at the courthouse,” Aaron Wiley said. “My heart dropped.” Erleigh said she had a trial that morning and the jurors and attorneys were already in her courtroom. “It was a huge trial,” she said. “We were packed in there.” Erleigh happened to look out a window and saw bailiffs running by the courthouse. The bailiff in her office checked his radio and then ran out of the courtroom.

“Then the phones started ringing,” she said. “I had to tell the [assistant district attorneys] that Mark Hasse had been shot. I told the jurors they were safe and I didn’t want them to leave the courtroom because there had been an incident.” Normal courtroom decorum at the point was out the window. Erleigh’s main goal was to keep everyone safe. “My bailiff came back in and said [Hasse] was ‘gone,’” she said. “I went back into the courtroom.” When she told the jurors, and told them the trial was suspended, the look on their faces was one of disbelief and fear because their vehicles were parked in the same lot where Hasse was murdered, Erleigh said.

“I think I always wanted to be a lawyer. I knew I could help people.” Just shy of two months later, Kaufman County District Attorney Mike McLelland and his wife, Cynthia, were executed in their home near Forney. The county needed a new top gun — and courtesy of Gov. Rick Perry, she became the next district attorney for the county of Kaufman. Wiley’s ascension to becoming Kaufman County’s top law enforcement official has not been traditional. Wiley, who was born and raised in Kaufman, has always been a people person. And she has been familiar with the Kaufman County Courthouse

Above, Erleigh and her husband, Aaron Wiley. Right, the Wiley’s on vacation with their two sons.

since her younger years when she used to attend 4H meetings in the building. After high school, she went to Texas Tech for business management. “I think I always wanted to be a lawyer,” Wiley said. “I knew I could help people.” So she went on to law school at the University of Texas in Austin and did her internship in civil law in Dallas. “I thought it was very boring,” Wiley said. In 1989 she learned the Dallas District Attorney’s Office was hiring, applied and was signed up by John Vance. She worked in the Dallas D.A.’s office until learning about the Kaufman County Court at Law judge’s position. Wiley ran for the judgeship in 2002 and began in serving in the court in 2003. That was the same year she married Aaron Wiley. The Wileys jokingly tell how they met. A friend urged her to call Aaron and ask him out on a date for a Dallas Mavericks basketball game in 2002. When she called, according to Aaron, he initially believed she was seeking a job in the

prosecutor’s office and told her they were not hiring. Not only did they get married, but on Valentine’s Day in 2008, Wiley gave Aaron one of her kidneys. He still takes rejection medication. So not only are they tied together career wise, but they are linked in one of the most personal ways imaginable because of the gift of a kidney. When the McLellands were murdered, their lives as they knew them changed forever.


Kaufman County Life | Feature Volume 4 Issue 1 | Spring 2014

“After Mark was murdered, I did not fear for my life,” Wiley said. “After Mike? Yes. That was crazy.” The McLellands were found slain on March 30. By Monday, she had a U.S. Marshal at her Court At Law office. “By Tuesday, we had a real [security] detail,” Wiley said. U.S. Marshals and Homeland Security set up a protection detail at the Wiley’s home as well as around

“She is an outstanding prosecutor and has years of serving as a prosecutor in Dallas. She knows [Kaufman] county and knows the county system.” the neighborhood, including electronic surveillance equipment. “They are in your home — they want to know your schedules,” she said. The Wiley’s children initially were fearful because of all the activity. “It had become reality,” she said. “They got to know the guys on the shifts. We would all ride together.” Wiley told how one of her sons, Brad, had changed his schedule. “An agent said, ‘Wait a second young man. We need to know specifically where you are going,’” she said. “It took a full week to get used to it.” The agents even went to the Wileys’ boys’ ballgames. “They wore Hawaiian shirts to cover up their guns,” Wiley said. And there were guns, she said. The type of weapons 16


that mean business. They set up their command center in the family’s dining room and also walked the perimeter of the property. At first there was unease on the part of the family, then appreciativeness, Wiley said. “Then, the nightmare was over,” she said. The next step was who was going to become the county’s new district attorney. Wiley said 86th District Court Judge Howard Tygrett said he believed the county needed her as the next D.A. “I had never thought about it,” Wiley said. “I was a prosecutor for 14 years and never thought about it.” Deciding to put her hat in the ring for the position, she said, was a personal attempt to try to bring calm back to Kaufman County. “You know, I grew up in Kaufman County,” Wiley said. “It is a good place.”

On April 10, Perry announced his decision to choose Wiley as the county’s new district attorney. “I am very grateful to Mike McLelland for the work he did in the district attorney’s office,” Wiley said in an April press conference in front of a statue honoring Confederate soldiers who died in the Civil War. Standing outside the Kaufman County Courthouse, she said McLelland had built a great team. “After all the things that happened to their office, they are rock solid,” Wiley said. After being told by Perry’s staff she had been selected, she told herself, “I can do this.” Wiley said solving the McLellands’ murders, as well as Hasse’s, was a top priority, while the county’s business moves forward. “There is danger,” Wiley said. “We all are in danger here in Kaufman County until we

Kaufman County Judge Bruce Wood and Wiley take reporters’ questions outside the county’s courthouse in Kaufman.

figure out who did these horrible things to Mike and Cynthia and Mark. So, I don’t know if I am stepping in any more danger than I was already in,” she said. “I just know the way I was born and raised, you just need to do it,” Wiley said, in becoming district attorney. She said McLelland’s passion for justice would continue to be an inspiration. “I am confident that brighter days are ahead for Kaufman County,” Wiley said. Kim and Eric Williams were arrested in April and charged with capital murder. Kaufman County Judge Bruce Wood was pleased with Perry’s selection to replace McLelland. “I am absolutely delighted,” Wood said shortly after Wiley’s selection. “She is an outstanding prosecutor and has years of serving as a prosecutor in Dallas. “She knows [Kaufman] county and knows the county system,” he said. Moving the county forward was Wiley’s goal. “We had to bring back stability,” she said. That included organizing the D.A.’s office and managing the growth in cases. Crime did not stop and the cases did not stop piling up during and after the murders. “It was most challenging getting the everyday work done,” Wiley said. “People were still driving drunk and still doing drugs. Drugs are a problem here. Specifically heroin. “We are trying not to drop any plates,” she said. “I just want to be the best D.A.’s office.” Her assistant district attorneys have continued where McLelland and Hasse left off. They prosecuted Harry Beatty for a 2011 murder and sent him away for seven years. They also handled McLelland’s case against a gun range, which ended with the gun range getting the better end of a split verdict. They currently are working on a case against Kaufman County Precinct 2 Constable Joe Don Law. Law was indicted on Aug. 20, 2013, for tampering with governmental records. “It’s staggering, but I would say there are more than 1,200 cases in felony courts,” Wiley said. “With four prosecutors, that is 300 cases. “Misdemeanor is approximately 50 percent more, with over 1,800 cases,” she said. “These numbers do not include — CPS, juvenile, forfeitures/seizure, appeals, and other civil matters we sometimes handle. These numbers are from the end of last year.”

Nearly one year after being appointed as D.A., the caseload continues and Wiley could use more manpower. Gone are the camera crews covering her. And gone are the U.S. Marshals and Homeland Security officials that stood guard over her family. Wiley’s focus is on being the best prosecutor’s officer possible with the staffing level she was presented. With any prosecutor’s job, let alone becoming the top law enforcement officer after Hasse and McLelland were murdered, comes See JUDGE, Continued on pg. 28

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Terrell celebrates the

Jubilee way

Rachel Stallard Photos by Gary E. Lindsley and Don Johnson Story by

The Terrell Heritage Jubilee may have literally started from chicken scratch in 1981, but by the time the annual event comes around April 24-27, the town is going to be ready to celebrate whole hog.


ubilee started as a one-day livestock show near the National Guard Armory 33 years ago, according to Danny Booth, Terrell Chamber of Commerce president. It has steadily increased in size and popularity, especially with the addition of carnival rides six years ago. As more visitors came, the demand for booths increased and a Business/Health Expo was added to the Saturdays’ line-up. This year’s event should see around 200 vendors/ exhibitors setting up tents across both Lions Club and Ben Gill parks near U.S. Highway 80. From gun slingers to dog shows, and trick ropers to white

tigers, the chamber plans for this event year-round. “We try to come up with different activities each year so it won’t get stale,” Booth said. However, some of the favorites remain, including: the Fountain 5K Run (hosted by the Terrell State Hospital Volunteer Services), live entertainment, a quilt show, an antique car show and a state championship barbecue cook-off. Director of tourism Donna Riley scours festivals throughout the year to bring some of the most captivating vendors and exhibits she can. One of her finds includes a woman who sells purses made out of gum

wrappers. Last year, the event introduced mutton bustin‘ — an activity where children ride sheep as if they were rodeo bulls.

A barbecue competition participant cuts up some ribs during the 2013 Jublilee.


Kaufman County Life | Feature Volume 4 Issue 1 | Spring 2014

Pigs were racing, musicians were performing, dogs and car show winners were posing and children were having a great time during the 2013 jubilee.

Terrell definitely enjoys the the economic boost 15,00018,000 visitors bring to the town; but the vendors and exhibitors also inject themselves into the event. For Carol Boger, who runs Ham Bone Express Pig Racing with her husband Charles, the greatest reward is the smiles from the crowd. By contrast, her 16 porky racers run for a cookie prize. “I can’t tell you why, but universally people love pigs. They’re just drawn to them,” Boger said. “A big percentage of the people we see have troubles in their life. But for about 20 minutes, they’re able to forget about that and laugh.” She especially enjoys Southern crowds, “because in general, they’ll laugh out loud.” The Bogers have been transporting their pigs in a 20


customized 53-foot trailer out of Fayetteville, Ark., for the last 12 years. She estimates they will do between 15 and 18 shows this year. Riley says the pigs are “a fan favorite,” and the pigs, true to form, are astute performers. “We take good care of them. They have amenities not found in any barnyard and are the cleanest in the pig racing business. There are no annoying odors and a veterinarian inspects them every 30 days. We exceed the requirements of the USDA Animal Welfare Act,” she said. “They are pampered performers who will pass you at perilous speeds, proving that pigs are more than just pork.”

Pigs are heroes in another part of the festivities, although more for tasting good than for performing in good taste. Terrell’s Jubilee is home to a state-sanctioned BBQ championship that sends winners to the national American Royal World Series of Barbecue competition in Kansas City. Qualifying in this event also gives cookers a chance to have their name drawn for the World Championship Barbecue competition hosted by Jack Daniels Distillery in Lynchburg, Tenn. Sanctioned by the International Barbecue Cookers Association, the BBQ event has two divisions: local and pit. Head Judge Lynn Shivers has been helping with the Terrell competition since 1989. “We run the two cook-offs at the same time, under two sets of judges,” Shivers said. This means coordinating nearly 50 judges per category in the pit division and more than 20 per category in the local division.

“At one time I had 40 judges going at once.” Volunteers from the public can sign up to judge the morning of the event. The only criteria is that they must be 18 years or older; prompting students from Trinity Valley Community College to make judging an annual tradition. The categories are: chicken, pork spare ribs, brisket, beans and cobbler. “We judge beans and cobbler from both divisions combined together right now. In the beginning, everybody wanted to sign up to judge the cobblers. I would tell

Left to right, from top: The Acoustic Sound Hounds perform Sunday afternoon. Beau Anders makes cut-coin art in his booth. Winners of the antique and classic car show go home with trophies. Daelyn Hooper gets a helping hand from his dad Ray as he assembles a bug cage project at the Home Depot exhibit. Pets and their people strut their finest look during the popular dog show.


Kaufman County Life | Feature Volume 4 Issue 1 | Spring 2014

them, ‘If you want to judge cobbler, you have to judge beans also.’ But now, as a general rule, we always have enough judges,” Shivers said. Shivers has run BBQ events from Virginia to California, but she calls Terrell, “one of our Top 10 as far as size.” The local event produces more than 100 teams each year, and draws in visitors from across state lines. The publicity has brought improvements to her event as well. “I remember our earliest days here. We were down in the sand behind the Armory,” she said “Now they have us on the tennis courts, under a tent. it’s very nice. We’re never in the mud.” For Shivers and her husband, Jeff (a founding father of the IBCA), cooking for the chamber is like coming home each year. “We’ve been doing this for so long that they’ve really become like family to us,” she said. “We pull up in our RV on Thursday and they say, ‘The Shivers are here. We can get started.’” Not only does Shivers love the people; she’s also fond of the park, the town and the event itself. “There’s always so much going on here.

The Heritage Jubilee Quilt Show is a popular stop for many visitors while games on the midway, below, are also a big attraction to attendees young and old.

See JUBILEE, Continued on pg. 28

Join us for Liberty Fest May 23-25, 2014... celebrating Forney’s 140th Birthday! 22


Festival Fun Written by

a short jaunt away

Rachel Stallard

Spring yourself up and get outside! Whether you’re flying a kite, frolicking in the park or freestyling through life, there are always opportunities to enjoy the great outdoors. And if you’re looking for some family-friendly festivals, check out these East Texas events — all within 100 miles of Terrell.


2 3 4 5


Tyler Azalea Trail, Historic District, Mid-March through Mid-April, Tyler. Texas’ Rose Capital is also home to the

Azalea and Spring Flower Trail, which includes tours of area homes and flower trails, a civil war re-enactment, square dancing, 10k run, arts & crafts, and more. The Azalea and Spring Flower Trail travels through eight miles of residential gardens and historic homes sites. The two trails have been routed to maintain an orderly traffic flow so visitors can see as many flowers as possible. From the courthouse on North Broadway, follow the specifically marked Azalea Trail signs southward to enjoy this outstanding celebration of Spring in East Texas. Go to for a map and more details. Terrell ArtWalk, April 4, Terrell. Terrell ArtWalk is set

from 4-8 p.m. on Friday, April 4, in downtown providing a self-guided opportunity to see art, visit and be entertained by groups like the Terrell High Jazz Band. Dalton Days & Wild West Show, April 5, Longview.

Blacksmith demos, World of Western children’s activities, and Dalton Gang Bank Robbery Re-enactment. Held in the Rodeo Arena at Gregg County Fairgrounds, 1123 Jaycee Drive. Call Gregg County Historical Museum for ticket info: 903-753-5840. Van Zandt County Fair and Rodeo, April 8-12, Van Zandt County Fair Grounds, Canton. Featuring youth activities

such as a gilt show, cupcake wars and open mic night; also cake decorating contest at the State Building. Jaden Farnsworth is scheduled to perform on Saturday night. For more information, visit Main Street Arts Festival, April 10-13, Fort Worth. The

four-day Main Street Arts Festival is one of the largest and most well-respected art festivals in the Southwest United States. The festival features more than 200 exhibiting artists, as well as nearly 100 performing artists. There are plenty of creative activities for families and

7 8 9 10

children as well. Culinary arts and film are also well represented during the event. Free; NOT pet-friendly. Held on Main Street in downtown Fort Worth between the Tarrant County Courthouse and Fort Worth Convention Center. April in Edom, April 12-13, Downtown Edom. An old-

fashioned street fair for adults, kids and pets. Vendors from all over Texas will sell a variety of unique, highquality handmade items, along with food, music, a special children’s activity area and a pet parade. Sponsored by the Edom Area Chamber. For more info, visit Texoma Earth Day Festival, April 26, Sherman Municipal Grounds, 405 N. Rusk. A family-oriented event

where community members come together to learn ways to reduce our impact on the environment. This is a fun filled event with something for everyone — art shows, electric and hybrid vehicles, vendors, workshops, music, food, displays, educational materials, resources, demonstration, and more! Free. For more info, visit National Train Day, May 10, Mineola Amtrak Station.

The 7th Annual National Train Day brings train enthusiasts and supporters around the nation together at more than 250 locations across the country. Visit for more information. Wildflower Arts & Music Festival, May 16-18, Richardson. Features local, regional and national musi-

cal acts performing live, as well as singer/songwriter contests, arts and crafts show, interactive displays, petting zoo and plenty of other activities for the whole family. Located at the Galatyn Park Urban Center in Richardson, north of Dallas at US 75 and Galatyn Parkway. Visit 48th Annual National Polka Festival, May 23-25, Ennis. Featuring a colorful Czech parade, live music,

arts & crafts, a horseshoe tournament, traditional Czech foods, dancing and a 5k run, Ennis’ annual National Polka Festival is the largest Czech heritage festival in the United States. Go to or call 888-3664748 for more information.


Kaufman County Life | Cook’s Corner Volume 4 Issue 1 | Spring 2014

Cook’s Corner Story and Photos by

Gary E. Lindsley

Walking into Rebecca Sullivan’s house revealed a heavenly aroma that was rich with the smell of tomatoes, Italian hot sausage, garlic and other aromatic spices.




tanding on a step stool near one of the stoves in her kitchen, Sullivan was stirring a big pot of Macho Mostaccioli sauce. “It is basically a spaghetti meat sauce, but it is my own,” she said as she stirred one of the two pots of sauce. “I developed it over many years of cooking.” As she switched over to slicing orange and yellow bell peppers, Sullivan said the dish was one of her son’s favorites when he was in school. The first time she made it was 20 years ago for her family. The first time she made it she used spaghetti, but the sauce would not stick to the noodles. It ran off. “It was good, but I really needed pasta where it would hold the sauce.,” Sullivan said. “Then I tried the Mostacciloli. What a difference.” She also uses penne pasta. “I have made it several times for the band at the [No. 1] BFTS dinner dance,” Sullivan said. “It was received very well.” Ingredients include fennel seeds, tomato paste, San Marzano tomatoes, a bit of sugar, and of course, links of hot Italian sausage taken out of their casings. She has made the dish for staff gatherings at Riter C. Hulsey Public Library where she is the director as well as for other gatherings.

On Jan. 31, Sullivan was making it for about 50 people at the Wings GED graduation celebration.

Rebecca Sullivan is well known for her culinary delights. Left, she is seen on a stool while stirring one of two pots of sauce. Top, a close up look at her saucy creation and, above, she cuts up vegetables.

She started making the sauce the day before. “I like for the sauce to cook for awhile,” Sullivan said. “I like to have it simmer for at least an hour, two hours.” And she will not use a food processor on the vegetables that go into the sauce.“That is very important,” Sullivan said. Also important is using only San Marzano tomatoes. “They have a different flavor,” Sullivan said. The sauce, she said, will keep for up to a week in the refrigerator and freezes well. “It is one of my crowd pleasers,” Sullivan said.

Macho Mostaccioli Sauce over Pasta 3 links hot Italian sausage, casings removed 1 lb. lean ground beef 1+ cup chopped onion 1+ cup chopped bell pepper 3 cloves garlic, minced or put through a press 1/ + tsp Lawry’s garlic salt 2 1 tsp basil 1/ tsp fennel seeds (optional) 2 1 packet McCormick Extra Thick and Zesty Spaghetti Mix 1 can tomato paste 1 28 oz. can San Marzano tomatoes chopped or crushed 1 1 /2 cups water 1/ cup dry red wine 2 1+ tsp sugar Salt and crushed red pepper to taste

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1 package mostaccioli or penne pasta Freshly grated parmesan for serving Brown sausage and ground beef, breaking into small pieces as the meat cooks. Remove meat with slotted spoon and set aside. Sauté onion, bell pepper, and garlic in remaining fat until slightly soft. Sprinkle generously with garlic salt, basil and, if the sausage doesn’t contain them, fennel seeds. In a large pot combine meat and sautéed vegetables with remaining ingredients. Bring to a simmer and cook at least 45 minutes. Be sure to stir now and then to avoid burning. Taste and correct seasonings before serving. Boil pasta according to package instructions. The pasta may be cooked ahead of time and refrigerated for several days. When ready to serve, simply combine with heated sauce. Serve with parmesan. Sauce will keep for up to a week in the refrigerator and also freezes well. This recipe scales easily for crowds, but if multiplying by more than three, cook in batches. One recipe serves 6 to 8 adults.

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Scene & Heard Power Tax Alicia Gardner is a Terrell native whose family roots prompted her to open a business in her hometown as well. Alicia, a 1991 graduate of Terrell High School, is the owner of Power Tax Services, a professional tax preparation office with an office at 602 N. Rockwall Street. Power Tax Services also has one location in Dallas in addition to its Terrell branch. The company is focused on e-filing tax returns quickly while getting customers the maximum return allowed.

Alicia said her team of registered perparers — including Lorena Parker in Terrell and Lisa Courtney in Dallas — are friendly, efficient and knowledgeable. They guarantee all qualified credits when they prepare your taxes. Alicia has more than 16 years of accounting experience and said she is dedicated to providing the best service possible for all tax and accounting needs. For more information on the company and its services, call Alicia at 469-828-9017 or email

Artworks Texas Carrie Heard Stevens has turned her lifelong passion for art into her full-time career with Artworks Texas. The Kaufman native, who now lives outside Crandall, has an art degree and has been teaching art since 1982. Stevens teaches classes for adults and children in such skills as painting, pottery and drawing. Among her regular programs are after school drawing for children 5-12 years. In November Stevens launched a drawing class for homeschool students and teaches that class at her location. “Painting with Pizazz” for adults will be

taught in Forney one evening a week. For children & adults, “Painting with Pizazz” has “gone mobile.” Stevens will come to your location to take a group of 10-150 people step-by-step to create a painting. This summer Stevens will be teaching Art Camps for children 5-12 years. Kids will learn drawing, painting & pottery at the camps. For more information or to register for an Artworks Texas class, call 214-675-9447, or visit

Forney Chamber of Commerce What will you FIND in Forney? Historic charm. Vibrant growth. Friendly folks. Lady Liberty. Downtown Revitalization. Patio dining. Eclectic art. A shopper’s treasure. Familycentered events. A place to visit? Or a place to call ‘Home?’ Whichever you decide, Forney’s worth discovering!

2 Sisters Quilt Shoppe Deborah Harry and Cathy Spurlock — who really are sisters — opened 2 Sisters Quilt Shoppe in July 2010. The store is located in a very old historic building in beautiful downtown Kaufman. The building was in dire need of a full renovation before they even could open. They strive to provide a comfortable “home” environment that will allow your imagination to soar. They offer a very nice selection of fine fabrics, patterns, books, notions and instructional classes for all skill levels.



They recently added Janome sewing machines and accessories to their inventory. The store now offers full sewing machine service and sales. The philosophy at 2 Sisters Quilt Shoppe is that continued education will preserve the time-honored tradition of quilting. They are committed to providing the very best customer service and shopping experience for every person that walks through the doors. The store is located at 111 W. Mulberry St. in Kaufman. For more information, call 972-9329032 or visit

Wine & Dine Tortas Y Tacos Mexico Lindo If you want true Mexican food, visit us at 813 W. Moore Ave. in Terrell. We are the only restaurant that serves authentic Mexican food in Kaufman County! New and delicious items are added to our menu as well as specials for lunch and dinner.

Present or mention our ad in this editon of Kaufman County Life for 50% off second dish of equal or lesser value (some restrictions apply.) 972-557-0131. Like us on Facebook (tortas mexicolindo)!

Boo’s Beverage Center Boo’s Beverage Center truly is a family business, even if no one in that family is named Boo. Rather, the liquor store on the frontage road of Interstate 20 at State Highway 34, is owned by brothers Rickey and Eddie Dodson. Eddie’s son is the only other employee. They purchased the business five years ago. The previous owners, who ran the store for more than two decades, had a son nicknamed Boo, and renamed it after him about 23 years ago. When the Dodson brothers stepped in, the

store was so popular that the name wasn’t going anywhere.“It’s so unique that we didn’t even think about changing it,” Rickey Dodson said. The 1,800-square foot store has a variety of beer, wine and spirits. It has been in the area for almost 50 years. The location has been remodeled to accommodate the extensive selection that Boo’s carries. “Both of us love people, and this is a very people-oriented business. The customers we get here are great,” Rickey said. “We’ve got several generations that have come here.”

Terrell Steak and Grill Jamie Chavez has held so many jobs in the restaurant industry that it made sense for him to become an owner one day. That’s exactly the path he chose in February 2011 when the previous owners of Double T Steak and Grill in Terrell decided to retire. Rather than see the business close down, Chavez stepped in to operate it himself. The renamed Terrell Steak and Grill, at 307 E. Interstate 20, has made a few changes since it opened in 2001. To enhance the family atmosphere, the restaurant became non-smoking last year.

Chavez has held just about every position in the restaurant business during the past 25-plus years, from dish-washer to manager. Among the changes introduced by Chavez is a banquet room that can be reserved by large groups, and some changes in the menu to generate more lunch business. He said the staff prides itself on quality food and friendly service. The restaurant, which has eight full-time employees, is open for lunch and dinner every day except Monday. It also has a catering operation. For more information call 972-524-9998.

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Health & Wellness Rosehaven

Rosehaven/Hickory Square Assisted Living Inns

Rosehaven/Hickory Square Assisted Living Inns are community and quality focused operations with more than two decades of service providing care at about half the cost of the national average. The inns serve needs for elderly, disabled and veterans and have deep Kaufman County roots, according to Ray Manning, who owns and operates the inns along with his wife Wendy and staff. “Our quality of care is as good as anybody’s,” Ray said. State officials are highly involved in

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regulating all such facilities to ensure they meet quality standards. “We’re very proud of the quality of care we give,” he said. “Our facilities are neat as a pin and provide a lot of value.” Ray said some employees have been with the operation for more than 20 years. “We’re Kaufman County residents serving other Kaufman County residents,” he said. “We’re a home grown operation and are proud of the bargain and value we provide.”

Bright Smiles Bright Smiles Dental Clinic in Terrell is extending its offer of free denture exams for people of all ages. After expanding from serving pediatric patients to helping people of all ages about a year ago, Bright Smiles has complete dental service for every member of the family.

Bright Smiles office hours are from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday through Thursday and Friday from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. The office is located at 401 N. Ann, Suite A. Patients may also contact the office by phone, 972-524-1048, or email them at Mention this ad and receive half-off dental X-rays if they are required.

JUDGE, Continued from pg. 17 stress. Wiley does take time to unwind. “To really de-stress, every once in awhile — quarterly, and sometimes on special occasions — I get together with a group of women, who are as busy as me, that have been my friends through the years,” she said. “They are judges, lawyers, former classmates, friends. “We laugh, share, and sometimes cry as we talk about concerns about our children, our parents, our careers, as we support each other,” she said Running unopposed in November to remain as the county’s district attorney, stress will not be a factor for Wiley this election cycle. While she was appointed by Perry to fill out McLelland’s term, she is in the job for the long haul. 28


JUBILEE, Continued from pg. 22

There’s events for the whole family, and so many nice shade trees. It’s just one of our favorite places to go.” And the love is reciprocated. From the grocery stores, to the outlet mall, to the emergency services on hand at all times, Booth is thrilled to show off Terrell. “Everybody looks forward to it and the community really embraces it and the visitors,” he said. “Without the support from the city and its staffs, this event could not take place.”

Kaufman County Life | Feature Volume 4 Issue 1 | Spring 2014

ARTISTS, Continued from pg. 8 Since resuming her art career in fall 2012, Lalumia has submitted her work to various competitions and galleries — she has two pieces at different galleries in Dallas — to get feedback. She received a bit of surprise when her painting, “Winter on the Mountain,” was named a finalist in The Artist’s Magazine competition, and she was listed in the magazine’s December 2013 edition. “I started crying,” she said with laugh. “That was a pretty good boost to my return to the artistic arena and told me I should probably keep going.” Fritz, Wood and Lalumia are all part of various artists groups, such as the Forney Arts Council, Rockwall Art League and the Northeast Texas Fine Art Alliance. Founded in the early 2000s, NETFAA has 30 members, including the above mentioned artists, and is based in the Terrell Heritage Museum. “Our first goal is to provide educational and artistic opportunities for our members, as well as events where they can display their artwork,” said NETFAA president Maryjo Woodruff.

While the group isn’t strictly an outreach organization, NETFAA has teamed up with local entities — such as Terrell State Hospital and the No. 1 British Flying Training School Museum — to do murals. Woodruff, Ram Murphy, Julie Cox Hamm and Shelley Smith also visited the Terrell ISD Gifted and Talented Academy and the Furlough Middle School art club in the fall to provide lessons to students. “It was hard work, but we had a lot of fun,” Woodruff said. Groups like NETFAA serve as a type of forum for artists around the county. “The local art groups are a great source for support and resources and news,” Lalumia said. “We try to promote the arts in and around Terrell,” Woodruff said, “and give someone whose interested in the arts — whether they’re a professional or not — an opportunity to learn and to mingle with people who are artists or are interested in the same types of artwork. We want to give those artists an opportunity to learn new things.”

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William Florian Let’s Hang On Simply Sinatra November 2014 October 2014 September 2014 Classic remembrances of “Frankie Valli Tribute” “Folk Music of the 60’s” “Old Blue Eyes” *Admittance to concerts is by subscription only. Your E! Terrell subscription will also entitle you to attend concerts in Greenville, Kilgore, Irving and Tyler under a concert series reciprocity agreement.

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Kaufman County Life | Around the County Volume 4 Issue 1 | Spring 2014

No. 1 British Flying Training School Museum

gala dinner & dance

Above: Pauline Bond Baxter, and her son, David Baxter, stand in front of an AT-6 being built by volunteers. The plane was named after Pauline Bond Baxter, who was a link trainer at the No. 1 British Flying Training School during World War II. Top right: Karen Gilroy and her father, Charles Achinakian, a World War II veteran, cut a rug at the 2014 No. 1 British Flying Training School Museum Hanger Dinner and Dance on March 8.

 Mayor Hal Richards, and his wife, Christi, dance.

 Ron and Gayle Harris attend the dinner and dance.

 The Singing Sorta Sisters perform during the dinner and dance.

 Royal Air Force pilot Eric Gill and AT-6 link instructor Pauline Bond Baxter attend the annual hangar dinner and dance. Photos by



Gary E. Lindsley

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