Greatwood - July 2021

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Greatwood JULY 2021


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Contents & Staff July 2021

Greatwood monthly™




Ruby Polichino GRAPHIC DESIGNERS Melinda Maya Rachel Cavazos WRITERS & CONTRIBUTORS Scott Reese Willey Averil Gleason Ryan Dunsmore


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FEATURE | Dr. Herb Phelan is also author Arthur Herbert, and he wants you to know this is the logical way of keeping his works straight. IN THE SPOTLIGHT | Add some flavor to your summer months with these tasty and satisfying dishes and drinks. TALK OF THE TOWN | Edie Littlefield Sundby is a walker on a mission.



ARTS & ENTERTAINMENT | The benefits of gameplay for children and local incarcerated youth are encourage through art. HEALTH | County Judge KP George recognizes mental health leaders.

TO ADVERTISE To advertise in Greatwood Monthly please call Lee Hartman, Stefanie Bartlett, or Ruby Polichino, our advertising representatives, at 281-342-4474 for rates, information and deadlines. PHOTO & ARTICLE SUBMISSIONS We are looking for fresh story ideas and enjoy publishing your articles in the Greatwood Monthly. If you have an story idea or photo to publish please send your information to with “Greatwood Monthly” in the subject line. ©2021 Greatwood Monthly All Rights Reserved. Greatwood Monthly is a sister publication of Fulshear Living Monthly, Pecan Grove Monthly, West Fort Bend Living and is a publication of the Fort Bend Herald. Our publishing headquarters is 1902 S. Fourth Street, Rosenberg Texas 77471.

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Feature Story

Dr. Herb Phelan — a surgeon and a storyteller by MARQUITA GRIFFIN |


lthough it may create an air of mystique and intrigue, the reasoning behind author Arthur Herbert’s pen name is a logical one: it organizes his two lines of work. During the day, he’s Dr. Herb Phelan III, a practicing surgeon, and when an inspirational slice of fiction finds its way to the forefront of his mind, then he’s an author, carefully building a story, one word at a time. With his name on scientific writings — Phelan has 116 peerreviewed scientific publications — and his name on his fictional work, “a pen name makes it easier to keep these straight as to which is which,” he explained kindly. A couple of months ago, Phelan had the chance to put that pen name to use with the release of his first novel, The Cuts That Cure, on May 11. The book follows a disgraced surgeon who crosses paths with a cruel teenager in the Rio Grande Valley of Texas. Phelan said his book contains psychological suspense, mystery, and even some horror elements. “If you like Stephen King or Gillian Flynn — the lady who wrote “Gone Girl,” as well as the HBO series “Utopia” — it’s fair to say that you’ll like the book,” said Phelan, 53. Weeks before our interview and the release of the book, Phelan was encouraged by the pre-order sales hitting “almost three times the number [his] publisher initially told him,” and because of the strength of the pre-orders, his book spent some time as a No.1 Amazon new release. “This must be what it feels like to watch your kid go out into the real world,” he said of the idea of his novel being read by consumers.“Exciting but nerve-wracking.” A DOCTOR KNOWN FOR STORYTELLING Before becoming a surgeon, Phelan spent a year with a Jesuitrun domestic Peace Corps, worked as a lab tech, a bartender, on oil rigs, and “landscaped the Cegelski trailer park off Louise Street a lot with [his] brother Mike,” Phelan shared. “All these made me appreciate the opportunity a lot more once I started med school,” he added. And during the medical career that followed, Phelan was presented with plenty of opportunities to write — expository writings, that is. Scientific writing is heavily researched, referenced, and the writer focuses on building arguments, he explained.And, he noted,“one is encouraged to be economical with language.” Those rules don’t apply to fictional works, though. “Writing fiction is great because it’s really just sitting down and making stuff up,” Phelan said. Phelan explains that he’s one of those who loves reading, and he suspects that his passion for it is rooted in his upbringing. It’s at this point that he takes a moment to provide a bit of background knowledge: “My mom, Maxine Phelan, was a longtime English teacher at Lamar Consolidated who seems to have

6 • Greatwood Monthly

Dr. Herb Phelan (author Arthur Herbert). Learn more at taught English to half the town over age 40.” Now, with that explained, he continues his thought:“If there’s anything to genetics, it explains why the English part [of college] came so easily to me.” This could also explain why Phelan and his brother Mike “have always been a couple of storytellers.” “And truth to tell, I don’t hold a candle to him,” Herb said of his brother. He then shares a funny story about his brother’s wife, Ronnie, who was returning from a business trip in Orlando, where she’d been at a considerably bustling expo event. Someone overheard her say she was from Rosenberg, Texas, and the stranger asked her:‘Do you know the Phelan boys?’ “So,”Phelan said with humor lacing his words,“until I cure cancer, storytelling is what I’ll be best known for.” THE GRADUAL GROWTH OF A STORY The Cuts that Cure is available at Barnes and Noble and Amazon. Phelan surmises that if he’d intended to write a novel, he “probably never would have accomplished it.” It began at a Starbucks in Flower Mound,Texas where Phelan was working on a scientific protocol.This was during his transitional period between Dallas and New Orleans. “And I was stuck,” he recalled. “After staring at the blinking cursor for the better part of twenty minutes, I just opened up a blank Word document and started typing in the hopes that just the mechanical act of putting words to paper would get me kickstarted.” The effort resulted in him writing about 1,100 words describing his trip to Ojinaga. “There was nothing to it other than just pure description, but it worked, and with a new head of steam, I went back to my protocol. But I saved that Word document.” The next day, Phelan did it again. He wrote about 1,000 words

before turning his focus onto his scientific writing. “This went on for a couple of weeks, then a month. Slowly, there were characters appearing, and a plot took form. After a few months of this, I saw that I had almost 60,000 words. I literally googled,“How long is a novel?”’ The results indicated the average debut novel is usually 80-90,000 words. “I realized I’d about written a book!” he said. “From that point on, finishing it was easy.”

Dr. Herb Phelan and his wife Dr. Amy Phelan.

NUGGETS OF TRUTH & THE POWER OF EDITORS Formerly of Rosenberg, Phelan and his wife Dr. Amy Phelan currently reside in New Orleans. For the most of the last two decades, however, Herb was training in Dallas and then working as an attending trauma and burn surgeon at Parkland Hospital — “a place best known as the hospital where they took both JFK and, later, Oswald,” he adds. Eighteen months ago, Phelan was recruited to a New Orleans practice, and when he started on March 30, 2020, the nation was in the middle of the disastrous COVID-19 surge. “It was crazy to be dealing with a pandemic while I was still trying to figure out how the phones worked and where the bathrooms were at my new hospital,” he recalled. So, although fabrication of intriguing suspense, there are nuggets of reality within Phelan’s story, truths he knows firsthand. “Physician burnout is a real thing, and it’s something I’ve grappled with myself,” said Phelan.“Although, obviously not to the extent that my protagonist does in the book.” He remembers working for a boss who “seemed to treat young faculty members almost like cannon fodder.” “Squeeze all you can out of them while they’re young and cheap, and if they leave, just go get another one,” Phelan explained. “I actually knew a doctor who had quit to go teach middle-grade science for a while, so there was a nugget there.” As far as the book’s setting, Phelan said he knew small-town Texas, close to the border of Mexico, was ideal. “I’ve come to love everything about the culture of the border: the food, the music, the language, the people. It’s also got a dark underbelly down there that makes it fun to write about,” Phelan added.“For something that took shape as I wrote, it’s actually remarkable that the final product was so cohesive. “Again, I have Dana to thank for much of that.” Dana, is Dana Isaacson, the developmental editor who works for Blackstone publishing and the editor Phelan contracted to review his manuscript. Receiving “professional-level feedback” is crucial, Phelan said.

“When people think of editors, they think of someone who proofs your writing looking for punctuation and syntax errors,” Phelan said. “Developmental editors are a different thing altogether. The job of a good DE is to advise you on story elements.” Phelan said after Dana read the draft, the constructive criticism was beneficially specific: “Tone this part down, build this part up. Give the protagonist a love interest. Combine these two characters into one. This scene doesn’t work, get rid of it. This scene is great, flesh out the interaction here,” Phelan recalled. “He really helped take the story to the next level.” MAKING THE TIME FOR THE NEXT NOVEL And perhaps award-winning narrator Victor Warren can assist in boosting the novel’s reputation, too. Warren, who’s from Massachusetts, can “do a Texas accent that’s pure Matthew McConaughey,” said Phelan, explaining that Warren is the chosen voice actor for the audio version of the book. After auditioning 16 narrators for The Cuts That Cure —who “were all great,” Phelan said — Warren was “really head and shoulders above everyone else.” “I can’t tell you how surreal it was to hear these words that’d only been in my head for so long suddenly coming out of someone else’s mouth,” Phelan said.“Professional narrators don’t just read the words on the page, they’ll use voices for different characters in a way that really helps to bring the text to life.” With one book down, Phelan is already into his second work, potentially titled Strutting Through the Storm. This round is proving a bit more challenging because of time management, Phelan said. Finding time to write The Cuts That Cure was simple because he was transitioning between jobs. But now, with the practice “going full bore,” Phelan has to approach his storytelling differently. “I’ve found that I can’t find the time to write fiction, I have to make the time,” he said. “So, on the days when I write fiction, I get up between 3 and 3:30 a.m. and write until I have to start getting cleaned up to go to work at 5:30 a.m. “It’s tough, but the words don’t put themselves on the page, you have to do it.” Once he completes his second novel, Phelan looks forward to penning the next work. “I’d like to keep up a pace of a novel a year if possible. If this goes like I’m hoping, it has the potential to be a nice side gig for once I decide to retire from surgery, whenever that may be,” he said. For now, it just means continuing to tell stories.” “If you think this sounds like it would be fun,” he added teasingly, “you’re right.”

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Summertime Foods 8 • Greatwood Monthly

Herb Cheese-Stuffed Garlic Burgers

Best Burger With Blue Cheese Butter

—Serves 6—

—Serves 4—

Ingredients: 1 pound ground chuck steak 2 teaspoons salt 1 teaspoon black pepper 4 ½-inch slices blue cheese butter (see below) 4 sesame hamburger buns, halved

Ingredients: 2 pounds ground beef chuck, 85 percent lean 2 tablespoons chopped garlic ½ teaspoon kosher salt ¼ teaspoon ground black pepper 3 tablespoons herbed garlic cream cheese, such as Boursin 6 hamburger buns, split Oil for coating grill grate The Grill GAS: Direct heat, medium-high 425 F to 450 F; clean, oiled grate Charcoal: Direct heat, light ash; 12-by-12-inch charcoal bed (about 3 dozen coals); clean, oiled grate on lowest setting WOOD: Direct heat, light ash; 12-by-12-inch bed, 3 to 4 inches deep; clean, oiled grate set 2 inches above the fire Instructions: Heat the grill as directed.

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Using your hands, mix the beef, garlic, salt, and pepper in a bowl until well blended; do not overmix. Using a light touch, form into 12 patties no more than 1⁄2-inch thick. Put a portion (about 11⁄2 teaspoons) of cream cheese in the center of each of the 6 patties; top with the remaining patties and press together, taking care to seal the edges well. Refrigerate the burgers until the grill is ready. Brush the grill grate and coat it with oil. Put the burgers on the grill, cover and cook for 9 minutes, flipping after 5 minutes, for medium-done (150 F, slightly pink).Add a minute per side for well-done (160 F). To toast the buns, put them cut-sides down directly over the fire for the last minute of cooking. If serving the burgers directly from the grill, serve on the buns. If the burgers will sit, even for a few minutes, keep the buns and burgers separate until just before eating.

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Instructions: Combine ground steak with salt and pepper. Divide into 4 equalsized pieces and gently shape into 4 burgers about 1-inch-thick. Grill burgers and warm buns according to instructions below. Top burgers with butter and serve hot in sesame buns. Outdoor cooking: Grill over hot coals for 3 minutes per side for rare, 4 minutes per side for medium rare, or 5 minutes per side for well done. Place buns cut side down on grill until warm and lightly golden, 1 minute. Indoor cooking: Preheat a ridged cast-iron grill pan over high heat. Cook for 3 minutes per side for rare, 4 minutes per side for medium rare, or 5 minutes per side for well done. Place buns cut side down on grill pan until warm lightly golden, 1 minute. Blue-Cheese Butter | Makes 15 servings Ingredients: 16 Tbs unsalted butter, softened 4oz (1 cup crumbled) blue cheese 2 teaspoons black pepper Instructions: Place ingredients in a food processor or blender; pulse until well blended. Wrap in foil. Place in the freezer until hard, about 45 minutes. To serve, roll back foil and cut into 1⁄2-inch slices. When slicing from frozen, warm the knife under hot water first. After slicing, always tightly rewrap the unused flavored butter roll in the foil before returning to refrigerator or freezer. Chef ‘s Note: The following are two variations of this recipe — Herbed Burger: Add 2 teaspoons fresh thyme leaves or 1 teaspoon dried thyme, 1 crushed garlic clove and 1 tablespoon finely chopped onion to the ground steak; Spicy Burger: Add 1⁄2 teaspoon tabasco, 1 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce and 1 teaspoon Dijon mustard to the ground steak.

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6 Tbs kosher salt 6 Tbs sweet paprika 5 Tbs onion powder 5 Tbs garlic powder 3 Tbs dry mustard 3 Tbs cracked black pepper

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1 Tbs ground cumin 1 Tbs dried thyme 1 Tbs poultry seasoning 1 Tbs dried oregano 1 Tbs dried sage 1 Tbs chili powder



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14 • Greatwood Monthly

story and photo by AVERIL GLEASON |

Edie Littlefield Sundby eyes her milkshake from Another Time Soda Fountain in Rosenberg.


ant to know what pairs well with Lowa brand hiking boots? Red lipstick. Or at least that’s what Edie Littlefield Sundby swears by as she walks the Old Spanish Trail. Edie stopped by Another Time Soda Fountain in Rosenberg for a milkshake and good conversation before departing for Richmond and other communities along her 1,200-mile trek to Florida. “I started in San Antonio 20 days ago,” Edie said that June 1 morning.“I walked the Old California Mission Trail after battling cancer and Stanford removed my right lung in 2015. “I’m doing this trail now as a tribute to those who can’t due to the coronavirus pandemic. COVID has taken a toll on us and I want to show others what the power of walking has.” Edie said it took about 100 miles of walking before she could start breathing normally again. She explained that this trail isn’t designed for walking like the Old California Mission is, but that isn’t stopping her. Her plan was to make it to Orange,Texas (140 miles away) in the next 20 days. The 69-year-old mission walker said every mile she walks today is one less mile she has to walk tomorrow. “You learn a lot walking thousands of miles,” Edie said.“It took

me 800 miles to find the right boot. I swear by Loma.” She also revealed her secret into getting into restaurants and being treated like she isn’t a homeless person — red lipstick. “I learned a lot when I walked (in California). After a few miles, you start to look homeless. And smell homeless, too. Old people are afraid of the homeless. One day I thought, wow I’ll put on some red lipstick. From that moment on I could get a table anywhere. Like McDonald’s,” Edie said with a laugh. Along with the perfect boots and lipstick, Edie learned to start her days early to get away from the mosquitoes and the humidity. “I’m going to finish this trail if it takes me all year,” Edie said. “In fact, I hope it takes me all year. Walking (prolongs) life. And you get to connect with the history and the past along the way.” The Old Spanish Trail ends in Florida, about 1,025 miles away. And as for how she passes the time on her walk across the country? “I’m a walking prayer,” Edie said.“I’m missing part of my liver, colon, stomach, and right lung. As I’m walking, I’m connecting with God. I’m breathing in grace and breathing out cancer. “You have to be attentive when you’re walking. But I’d rather die with my boots on out here than in bed with cancer.” To learn more about Edie, buy her book,“The Mission Walker,” available wherever books are sold.

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Garden Club of Richmond meets for the 1st time in 2021

Kevin Kopps wins SEC pitcher of the year by RYAN DUNSMORE |


ormer George Ranch High School baseball star Kevin Kopps has had a stellar red-shirt senior season with the University of Arkansas. The Razorback hurler earned the SEC pitcher of the year award. Kopps is 10-0 with a national-best 0.75 ERA in 60.1 innings of work this season, striking out 97 batters while allowing only five runs on the Kevin Kopps year. He is the first Arkansas student-athlete to win the league’s Pitcher of the Year award since Nick Schmidt in 2006, and he is 19-5 with a 2.63 ERA in 157 1/3 career innings at Arkansas. The former Longhorn has collected eight saves during the 2021 season. Top freshman JJ Smith a George Ranch product and freshman on one of the top softball programs in the nation, was named to the Big 12 allfreshman team. The University of Texas catcher/first baseman wasted little time making her presence known as a freshman at Texas by hitting .385 over 27 games with 10 extra-base hits, including seven doubles, and 13 RBIs while posting a 1.157 OPS. Smith owns three multi-hit and three multi-RBI efforts, including a 3-for-3 game with two doubles and an RBI against Lamar (Feb. 26), a 2-for-3 performance with two doubles and an RBI against Tarleton State, and two-RBI efforts in match-ups against No. 15 Louisiana (March 18) and Kansas (April 24). She also blasted solo home runs in wins at Houston (March 3) and against Texas State (April 21).

JJ Smith

18 • Greatwood Monthly


n May 20 the members of the Garden Club of Richmond happily met in the garden sunroom of the Moore Home after a year of virtual meetings. It was just in time for club president and meeting hostess, Keely Knipling, to thank her officers for their year of service and welcome the next term’s officers. Her cohostesses, Deidre Doggett, Mike Greenwood, Rennie Knipling, Ruthanne Mefford, Dorothy Ruehman, and Courtney Raska along with Knipling served the club a delicious luncheon of Mrs. R. M. Darst’s (past garden club president in 1937) chilled gazpacho soup, chicken salad and bread rounds, fruit salad, trail mix, and floral themed decorated cupcakes.A special treat for the ladies’ viewing was a slide show of many of the members, past, and present, attending the 75th club anniversary celebration.

Lynn Hewitt receives the club bell as new president from Keely Knipling who received her crystal award for her service as president this year for Garden Club of Richmond.

In a brief meeting, Knipling thanked Barbara Benes, president of the club in 2019, and presented her with a crystal award. She also presented thank you gifts to her officers and committee members: Lynn Hewitt, Justine Huselton, Courtney Raska, Fran Kelly, Carol Edwards, Nancie Rain, Roberta Terrell, Claudia Wright, Dorothy Ruehman, Barbara Benes, Sandy Scott, and Joyce Steffee. She then announced the new officers for the following year.They are Lynn Hewitt- president, Courtney Raska- Vice President, Deidre Doggett- Secretary, Justine Huselton- Treasurer, and Claudia Wright- Parliamentarian. Claudia Wright, the spokesperson for the Service Committee, announced the recipients of $1000 service gifts to the following organizations:The Fort Bend Museum, Child Advocates of Fort Bend, Reigning Strength Therapeutic Horsemanship, Friends of Fort Bend Historical Commission, and the Preston Street Community Garden. These gifts are made possible by the sale of caladiums the club sponsors every spring. After the meeting, the members were invited to view the bridal exhibit featured in the Moore Home or to tour the new section added to the Fort Bend Historical Museum.

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Hostesses for the Garden Club of Richmond’s meeting held at the Moore Home were, from left, Deidre Doggett, Mike Greenwood, Keely Knipling, Rennie Knipling, Ruthanne Mefford, Courtney Raska, and Dorothy Ruehman.

dren may be exhibiting in their behaviors. “After the first session, we find many parents have a better understanding of their child, acceptance, and realization of their life journey ahead,” said Katchy. The second and third sessions are tools for successful caretaking. Effective communication, recognition cues, positive and negative reinforcement discussed with additional resources provided. “These two sessions are vital because they teach parents, family, and friends how to understand their child and all the many, different ways they can communicate,” explained Katchy. “The third course is really about finding additional therapies and thinking outside of the box on ways to engage children on the spectrum, like sports or specialized speech or physical therapy.” The final session focuses on self-assessment as a parent and setting goals of confidence and empowerment. Often this is the session where parents connect and learn from one another as well. Overall, each session is resourceful and allows parents to network and support one another. “I learned to lean on other parents because they can be a treasure chest of knowledge,” Sarah Hightower said when sharing her experience about the program. It is also encouraged that caregivers or close friends attend one or more sessions to understand better the dynamic personalities and effective treatments needed to provide a healthy, happy life for all. The Parent Empowerment sessions are held virtually via Zoom for one hour each Wednesday and Saturday of the month. To learn more, register for the free sessions, or find information on autism resources and upcoming events, visit parent-empowerment/.

Garden club members, Margie Eicke, Dorothy Ruehman, Lynn Hewitt, Vicki Ward, Nancie Rain, Laura Hartman, and Meredith Doggett, all wearing blue but feeling very happy to finally get to visit at the first in-person meeting for the year.


Hope For Three offers Parent Empowerment Sessions

ope For Three has launched a new, free program, called Parent Empowerment, which provides parents, caregivers, and extended family members vital training, tools, and resources to help children on the autism spectrum live their best life possible. “The interactive program provides people with a starting point after the diagnosis of autism,” said program instructor Samantha Katchy, M.A., BCBA, LBA. “People leave saying they wish they had done this sooner.” Hope For Three encourages caregivers to attend each of the four dynamic sessions provided to receive or continue receiving financial awards from Hope For Three Family Assistance and Resources Support programs. Each of the courses covers the varied path of managing life with an autistic family member. The first session introduces and acknowledges the main characteristics of autism and what chil-

20 • Greatwood Monthly

Samantha Katchy.


ort Bend County Librar- Toni Simmons ies is excited to welcome the public back with a performance by nationally-acclaimed storyteller Toni Simmons on Saturday, July 31 at 10 a.m. at the Jodie E. Stavinoha Amphitheater at George Memorial Library, located at 1001 Golfview in Richmond. Simmons is an award-winning and dynamic storyteller who brings her multicultural folktales to life with songs, rhythms, chants, and audience participation. Families with children of all ages will enjoy an imaginary adventure to other countries and an exploration of different cultures through Simmons’ unique and spirited versions of familiar stories. As a master storyteller, Simmons has captivated audiences at many festivals, including the National Storytelling Festival Exchange Place, the National Black Storytelling Festival, and the Texas Storytelling Festival. Internationally, she has performed in schools in South Africa, Germany, and Mexico. She is a touring artist for the Texas Commission on the Arts and was designated as an American Masterpiece by the National Endowment for the Arts. In addition to Simmons’ performance, George Memorial Library’s children’s librarians will kick off the event with a selection of multicultural rhymes, songs, and a bilingual book. The performance will take place in an outdoor amphitheater, and seating is concrete.Theater-goers are encouraged to bring cushions to sit on. Glass containers, alcoholic beverages, and popcorn are not allowed in the amphitheater. Partial shade is provided by canvas sails over the amphitheater. In the event of inclement weather, the performance will be rescheduled. Made possible by a grant from the Texas Commission on the Arts, this event is part of the Fort Bend County Diversity Over Division Initiative. The performance is free and open to the public. For more information, see the FBCL website ( or call the library system’s Communications office at 281-633-4734.



arents walk a fine line when trying to determine how much time to allow their kids to engage in gameplay. Gameplay has traditionally had a bad reputation, but parents can rest assured that by letting their children get involved in entertaining games of all types, including video games, they’re helping their youngsters in various ways. 1. Board games present chances for learning Board games are some of the first games young children get to play, and they can serve as introductions to lessons kids will ultimately learn in school. Simple games help children follow directions, learn colors, numbers, and develop hand-eye coordination, according to Scholastic. As kids age and games become more challenging, the chances for learning increase. 2. Games help with physical development Parenting magazine reports that outdoor play entices children to be active and can boost fitness and physical stamina.All types of games work the body by strengthening muscles and bones. Being outdoors in the fresh air and sunshine is good for the body and mind.When a child is physically fit, he or she also may have a strong immune system that reduces the risk of developing diseases like obesity or diabetes later in life. 3. Games can boost creativity Whether they’re following the rules or finding ways to circumvent them, games offer opportunities for children to delve into their creative sides and utilize their imaginations. Video games can immerse them in different worlds where they can ponder the what-ifs of role play. 4. Boost interest in school subject Certain video games depict historical settings or events that drive the play. Players may want to learn more about these situations and events. In addition, sparking an interest in various subjects and keeping the mind active can improve basic cognitive functions, states the pregnancy and childcare resource, Maternity Glow. 5. Games allow for broadened social activity Much in the way that game nights can help adults bond and make new friends, children who play games together may be able to meet others and engage with kids their age due to this shared interest. Children can benefit from gameplay in ways that might surprise their parents.

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hared experiences are ideal ways to make new friends or solidify established relationships. Bonds can be strengthened even further when those shared experiences include entertaining activities.This is a great reason for adults to incorporate routine game nights into their social calendars. Game nights are nothing new. Perhaps your parents or grandparents gossiped over a few games of gin rummy or weekly poker gatherings? Before the widespread proliferation of digital video games, board games were a go-to way to have fun. Even now, game nights can provide the perfect way to slow down, have fun and get together with friends. Hosting a game night can be an ideal way to have fun at home without turning on the television. The following are a few things to consider when planning a game night. The number of people dictates which games can be played How many people are invited to game night will determine the games that can be played. Game nights tend to be more successful with a guest between four and eight players. Keeping people engaged in a game can be more challenging if there are more than eight individuals, and most games are designed for a maximum of eight players. Plan for finger foods Game night etiquette typically dictates that hosts will provide refreshments. Instead of a sit-down meal, offer finger foods, which are easier to manage while engaged in gameplay. Premade party platters are an option if you want to spend more time entertaining and less time preparing food. Guests also can be encouraged to bring small dishes, such as sandwiches, chips, and dips, or other snacks. Have a variety of games on hand Let the course of the night be relatively fluid, even if you have a certain game in mind. If guests are not fans of a particular game, make sure you have others at the ready. Music or a sports game playing in the background also can be a way to keep guests entertained between turns. When deciding on games, consider these criteria, courtesy of Game Night Gods, an online game night resource • The game should be easy to learn. • The game should be relatively fast-moving. • The game should pique interest and be strategic. Get out of your comfort zones Acting zany and engaging in games that push people out of their comfort zones can help guests get to know one another and laugh along the way. Games also are a perfect way to learn something new with little to no pressure. A game night can unite existing friends and help people interested in making new acquaintances find common ground. If in-person game nights are not doable, gather virtually through video chat applications.

Fort Bend District Attorney Brian Middleton’s program to help at-risk youth, provides a creative outlet for detention youth to create their art and collaborate as a group giving them an outlet that allows them to express themselves constructively. “Our society’s character is determined by how we are taking care of your young people and each time I visit that facility, it is very close to my heart,” said George.“We are doing a number of things to empowering youth, and empowering leadership in our children, this is one of our number one priorities in our office.” The program aims to increase self-esteem and to help incarcerated youth move beyond their past circumstances. “We came together with the concept with a vision that our children are our future and our responsibility,” said Distract Attorney Brian Middleton.“Seeing the pandemic and the impact that it’s had on our community we came together to create a safe environment for our youth to flourish.” The County Judge’s office along with the District Attorney’s office will continue to work with the Juvenile Detention Center to display additional works of art in County facilities. “If we want to continue to build resilient communities, we must create a community where our youth are encouraged, and if we can do that, then they will trust us and value the community and the relationships they have,” said George.“It is our responsibility as not only leaders in our communities but elders in this village to nurture, support, and uplift these young men and women.”

Posing in front of the artwork of a juvenile inmate are, from left, Fort Bend County District Attorney Brian Middleton, Judge Frank Fraley, Judge Robert Rolnick, Judge Juli Mathew, Judge Teana Watson, County Judge KP George, Judge O’Neil Williams, Chief Kyle Dobbs, FBISD- Sonya Smith Watson, Judge Tameika Carter, Judge Kali Morgan, Judge Janet Heppard, Asst. Chief Brad Slater, Youth Outreach Dir. David Sincere.



ort Bend County Judge KP George, District Attorney Brian Middleton, Juvenile Probation Executive Director Kyle Dobbs, Juvenile Board Chair Judge Teana Watson, and a host of Fort Bend County elected officials and educators unveiled original works of art created in collaboration with the juvenile inmates at the Fort Bend County Detention Center and Artreach, a non-profit organization that provides mentoring and art-related support for at-risk children. The paintings are the first two pieces that are displayed in the corridors of the Fort Bend County Justice Center. The project, a part of

22 • Greatwood Monthly

This painting is one of the first two pieces displayed in the corridors of the Fort Bend County Justice Center.



SIPARIO by Arredo










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• 23


Master Gardeners partner rainwater harvesting with growing vegetables in Fort Bend by KAREN ZURAWSKI | Fort Bend County Master Gardener


ort Bend County Master Gardeners encourage home gardeners to grow their veggies and to consider using rainwater for irrigation. That effort soon will receive hands-on re-enforcement thanks to federal grants that sparked the construction of a rainwater harvesting system at the Master Gardeners veggie garden in Rosenberg. A covered, open-air structure will be built to house outdoor classes next to expanded/updated garden beds. As well, a composting site and beds for young and/or handicapped gardeners will be nearby. “Our mission has always been to teach. So it’s just improving the tools at our disposal and raising the level of our game,” said Master Gardener Peggy d’Hemecourt. “With these improvements, we will be able to demonstrate the reasons and value of using raised beds for vegetable production,” added Master Gardener Richard Weir, the project coordinator. Other benefits include: demonstrating the importance, value, and methods of rainwater harvesting and showing which vegetables can be successfully grown and their value For those who have not considered growing their vegetables, Fort Bend Master Gardeners can assist with understanding the options available based on their living space, as well as the nutritional and therapeutic value of gardening. The project started last year after Boone Holladay, Fort Bend County Extension agent, gave d’Hemecourt information about USDA-Natural Resources Conservation Service grants and asked if she saw any opportunities. She did discover an opportunity regarding grants to establish a community garden and a rainwater harvesting system. Three weeks later the gardeners met the application deadline which resulted in two grants totaling $9,000 being awarded last September. A plus for the grant application was the ongoing donation of garden vegetables to the Mamie George Community Center, a Houston Food Bank super distribution site. Fort Bend County Master Gardener produced and donated more than 2,900 pounds of food valued at about $4,000 for the center. “The enhancement grant was seen as an opportunity to increase the garden’s ability to feed the needy,” said d’Hemecourt. The Natural Resources Conservation Service grants are awarded through two projects that address challenges communities face in making fresh food accessible to everyone. Existing vegetable beds that had been built using a variety of methods have been removed and will be replaced with a more standardized design.“We will be able to increase the production space which should increase the amount of produce that we provide to the food bank,” said Weir. Rainwater harvesting isn’t new for Master Gardeners. For example, the cistern currently serving the native garden has been in place for at least 10 years. However, the new system will mark the first time the vegetable garden will rely on rainwater and drop its total reliance on municipal water. Monitor the Fort Bend Master Gardeners’ website at www. for updates on the project.

24 • Greatwood Monthly

Online gardening program to teach composting


ort Bend County Libraries will present an online program, “Landscape Success: Successful Home Composting,” on Tuesday, July 20, from 2 to 3:30 pm. Part 4 of the Texas AgriLife Extension Office’s “Landscape Success” series for homeowners, this program will be live-streamed via Webex; it will not be in person. Fort Bend County Master Gardeners Ed Plant and Amanda Banduch will provide tips on composting. Often consisting of food scraps and yard clippings, compost is organic material that can be recycled to become a valuable fertilizer to enrich soil and plants. Composting also helps the environment by redirecting these materials from landfills. The program is free and open to the public. Registration is required for the program so that a link to the Webex session can be emailed to all who register. To register online at the library’s website (, click on “Classes & Events,” select “Virtual Programs,” and find the program on the date indicated. Participants may also register by calling Fort Bend County Libraries’ Communications Office at 281-633-4734.

How to keep gardens safe in summer heat waves


ummer is a season to relax and enjoy the warm weather. Basking in the summer sun is a great way to relax, but only when the temperatures are safe. Summer heat waves can

compromise the health of human beings as well as their pets. Gardening enthusiasts also may need to go the extra mile to keep their plants and gardens from wilting under harsh summer sun. Extreme heat stress can be very harmful to plants. The online gardening resource Gardening Know How notes that some plants can withstand summer heat waves better than others. For example, succulents conserve water in their leaves, helping them to withstand heat waves when the dog days of summer arrive. But succulents are unique, and many plants will require a little extra help to withstand a heat wave. • Take a proactive approach with mulch. Gardeners need not wait until the heat arrives to protect their plants from searing summer heat. The sustainable living experts at Eartheasy recommend utilizing light-colored mulch during heat waves. Such mulch will reflect the sunlight and help to maintain cooler surface soil conditions. Eartheasy even notes that grass clippings, once they’ve turned from green to light brown, can make for the perfect mulch to protect plants from the heat. Clippings also are free, making them a cost-effective solution. • Water wisely. The horticultural experts at Yates Gardening note that water only helps plants withstand heat waves if it’s applied effectively. If water is only applied in short bursts and not long enough so it can penetrate all the way to the root zone, roots will then stay near the surface. In such instances, roots will dry out during a heat wave and plants won’t make it through the season.Timing also is essential when watering. Eartheasy recommends watering in the morning to avoid heat scald and also ensure as little water is lost to evaporation as possible. When watering during a heat wave, do so by hand rather than through a sprinkler. Hand watering allows gardeners to direct all of the

water onto the plants that need it most during a heat wave. • Let your plants pitch in. When planting new plants, it’s important that gardeners recognize it takes time for these plants to establish their roots so they’re strong enough to withstand heat waves. In the meantime, strategic planting can help them make it through their first heat waves unscathed. Eartheasy notes that planting by taller, more established plants can provide new plants with shade that can help them survive heat waves. Just make sure new plants can still get the sun they need to thrive. Heat waves are inevitable and potentially harmful to gardens. Gardeners can help their plants beat the heat in various ways.


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• 25

On The Fort Bend Scene


George Ranch High School 2021 commencement proceeds wet weather photos by SCOTT REESE WILLEY

A steady drizzle of rain didn’t keep families from attending the George Ranch High School graduation ceremony on May 22, 2021 at Traylor Stadium in Rosenberg. Nor did it stop the Fort Bend Herald’s Scott Reese Willey from heading out to the stadium that wet day to capture families watching their children and loved ones walk the stage.



George Ranch High School seniors Britton Bielitt 1commencement and Emma Behar celebrate before the start of in May at Traylor Stadium in Rosenberg.

Senior Seamus McCloud has enlisted in the 2month. Army. He departs for boot camp in Oklahoma this



Ranch High School seniors Britton 3littleGeorge Bielitt, Sydney Velez and Emma Behar didn’t let a drizzle ruin one of the biggest days of their lives.

Allison Schoditsch, Allison Nguyen and Iris Ngo 4George search for family in the stands before the start of Ranch High School’s commencement



ceremony. Schoditsch plans to go to college but is still uncertain what she will study. Nguyen wants to study biology and someday become a pediatrician while Ngo plans to study business.

George Ranch High School senior Maria Solano 5medical poses for a photo with Tana Holmes, who teaches classes at the LCISD campus. Solano said she wants to become a virologist someday.

Ranch High School senior Luke Nguyen 6theGeorge gives the thumbs up sign to his family sitting in stadium.



Ranch High School senior Caitlin Wilson 7SheGeorge shares a little wisdom with her fellow classmates. plans to go to college and study theater. George Ranch High School English teacher Fred 8Bailey Siegmund poses for a photo with seniors Laura and Emily Burks. Claudia Urbina, who teaches law enforcement 9Waumsley, classes at George Ranch High School, and Julie who teaches culinary arts at the LCISD

9 26 • Greatwood Monthly


campus, help students find their seats before commencement kicked off .

Ranch High School seniors Stasja 10George Nossa, Gabby Bernal and Morgen Rathmell.

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Health News

Mental health leaders recognized by Judge KP George


ort Bend County Judge KP George recently honored the work of two mental health leaders just as National Mental Health Month ended. After touching on the importance of mental health awareness, reducing the stigma around mental health struggles, and helping individuals who need help, George highlighted the efforts of Dr. Connie Almeida and Dr.Asim Shaw. Dr.Almeida is Fort Bend County Director of the Behavioral Health Services Department. Dr. Shaw is the Executive Vice-Chair and Professor of Psychiatry and Family and Community Medicine at Baylor College of Medicine “My pledge is that I will continue to work with each and every one of you to ensure that our residents have access to mental health services, and we need your help in that,”George said.“Because sometimes we have an attitude if it something unpleasant, uncomfortable we will just put it on the side. I learned a long time ago, it is better if you recognize it and try to do something about it.” A licensed psychologist and specialist in psychology, Dr. Connie Almeida joined Fort Bend County in 2010 as the founding Director of the Behavioral Health Services Department. What began as a one-person department grew to one with 20 fulltime employees including licensed psychologists and a psychological associate, a developmental psychologist, a licensed professional counselor, case managers, project/grant management staff, jail diversion coordinator as well as administrative support staff. The department was created to assist in addressing the needs of those with mental illness who come into contact with the justice system and works collaboratively with the justice system, health and human services, behavioral health providers, county offices, schools, and the community. A trained psychiatrist, practicing physician, professor, and chair of the Mental Health Task Force in Fort Bend County, Dr.Asim Shah was also honored for his tireless work to increase mental health awareness, services, and support to address the complex needs of persons with behavioral health disorders. During Mental Health Awareness Month, Dr.Almeida and Dr. Shah have worked to spread the word about mental health through a host of events in Fort Bend County, including the Mental Health Awareness Walk on May 21 and hosting LIVE weekly mental behaviors discussions. Judge George was joined by the Honorary Consul General of Por-

Fort Bend County Judge KP George honored the work of Dr. Connie Almeida and Dr. Asim Shaw.

28 • Greatwood Monthly

tugal Jose M. Ivo, Honorary Consul General of Pakistan Abrar Hashmi, Fort Bend County Commissioner Ken DeMerchant, Fort Bend County Sheriff Eric Fagan, and a host of community and business leaders.

Local physician treats septal deviations with minimally invasive technology


Sugar Land ENT is the Dr. Brian Wang first in the Houston Methodist system to use innovative technology to assist in the treatment of a septal deviation. In March, board-certified otolaryngologist Brian Wang, M.D., of Houston Methodist ENT Specialists at Sugar Land removed a 3-centimeter bone spur from a patient’s septum with the help of the Relieva Tract Nasal Dilation System, which uses a high-pressure balloon to open space in the nasal cavity, increasing access for the physician to work. This technology makes it possible for physicians to repair septal deviations, address bone spurs and other forms of nasal blockages in a clinic setting, rather than in a hospital operating room. “We can now repair these issues with a minimally invasive procedure that can be performed under oral sedation in the office rather than general anesthesia in the operating room,” said Wang. “For patients, it’s more convenient, less expensive, and reduces recovery times.” Balloon technology is now being used in a variety of otolaryngology procedures, including the treatment of turbinate hypertrophy – an enlarged outgrowth of the nasal sidewall bone – and different types of stenosis, or narrowing of the sinuses, salivary ducts, and trachea. Patients with septal deviations/spurs and turbinate hypertrophy may suffer from blocked nasal passages, which can make breathing difficult, and they often experience recurring sinus infections and even headaches. Traditional septoplasty involves trimming, repositioning, and sometimes removing cartilage or bone through incisions inside the nose or between the nostrils. This advanced technology eliminates the need for extensive surgery.The patient is given a sedative and local anesthetic, and the instrument is inserted into the nostril. Once in place, the high-pressure balloon is inflated, pushing against bones, cartilage, and mucus membrane to straighten the septum and open the airway. The tool can then be inserted into the other nostril to push in the opposite direction if needed, loosening the bone and mobilizing any bone spurs for removal via an incision. “Whether their condition is genetic or the result of trauma, patients often put off seeking treatment because they see it as difficult and painful,” said Wang.“But today we have new technology that enables us to treat nasal blockages without major surgery. There’s no reason to suffer.” Houston Methodist ENT Specialists is located in Medical Office Building 1, Suite 320 on the Houston Methodist Sugar Land Hospital campus. To schedule an appointment with Wang, visit or call 346-874-2425.

3 strategies to protect mental health


mproving one’s overall health and maintaining that health over the long haul can have a profound impact on quality of life. For example, the Harvard Medical School notes that regular exercise can slow the natural decline in physical performance that occurs as people age.That means routine exercise can serve as something like a fountain of youth that allows people to keep their cardiovascular fitness, metabolism and muscle function on par with their younger counterparts. When attempting to improve long-term health, it’s important that people emphasize mental health as much as they do their physical health.The Anxiety & Depression Association of America notes the importance and effectiveness of preventive efforts in relation to depression and anxiety. In regard to mental health, prevention efforts can function in much the same way that exercise serves physical health. Routine exercise helps people to maintain healthy weights, reducing their risk for various conditions and diseases. Preventive efforts designed to improve mental health can significantly reduce a person’s risk for anxiety and depression. Various techniques and strategies can be utilized to promote mental health, and these three are simple and highly effective. 1. Get enough sleep According to the Primary Care Collaborative, a not-for-profit member organization dedicated to advancing an effective and efficient health system, sleep and mental health are intimately related. Sleep loss can contribute to emotional instability. The amygdala is the part of the brain responsible for humans’ emo-

tional responses. When an individual does not get enough sleep, his or her amygdala goes into overdrive, leading to more intense emotional reactions. The prefrontal cortex is another part of the brain that needs sufficient sleep to function properly. Without it, the prefrontal cortex, which is integral to impulse control, cannot function properly. Adults can speak with their physicians about how much sleep they should be getting each night. Those needs change as individuals age. 2. Eat a balanced diet A balanced, healthy diet doesn’t just benefit the waistline. According to the ADAA, a balanced diet that includes protein, healthy non-saturated fats, fiber, and some simple carbohydrates can reduce the likelihood that mental health issues like fatigue, difficulty concentrating and irritability will arise during the day. 3. Volunteer in your community A 2020 study published in the Journal of Happiness Studies found that people who volunteered in the past were more satisfied with their lives and rated their overall health as much better than people who didn’t volunteer. Perhaps the most noteworthy finding in the study was that people who began volunteering with lower levels of well-being tended to get the biggest boost from volunteering. Volunteering provides opportunities to socialize, which can help ward off the loneliness that can sometimes contribute to anxiety and depression. Mental health is important, and protecting it should be part of everyone’s health care regimen.

Greatwood Veterinary Hospital At Greatwood Veterinary Hospital, we are dedicated to providing excellent and compassionate care for your furry, family friends. We offer full veterinary services in our new, spacious 6,500 square foot facility. Our experienced and caring veterinarians and staff strive to provide the best quality care available for your pets, with an emphasis on client education and an understanding of your pet’s specific needs. We would like to be partners with you in ensuring your pet’s good health and well-being. In addition to full medical, surgical, and dental veterinary care, we also offer boarding, grooming, and cremation services. Greatwood Veterinary Hospital has been providing affordable and quality veterinary care to the Fort Bend area for over 15 years. It is our hope that we can meet all your animal’s health care needs with our warm, friendly, and knowledgeable services. To make an appointment for your pet or for more information, please call us at (281) 342-7770 or visit us at 401 Crabb River Road in Richmond. To advertise, call 281-342-4474

• 29

Dr. Omotola Hope joins Houston Methodist Sugar Land Hospital


ouston Methodist Sugar Land Hospital is pleased to welcome Omotola Hope, M.D., a board-certified neurologist who specializes in treating epilepsy and other types of seizures. Hope began seeing patients on June 14 at Houston Methodist Sugar Land Neurology Associates, located in Medical Office Building 3 on the hospital campus. Hope is a graduate of the University of Pennsylvania School of Medicine. She completed an internship Dr. Omotola Hope in internal medicine at North Shore University Hospital in Manhasset, New York, and her residency in neurology at Yale New Haven Hospital in Connecticut. She also completed a fellowship in epilepsy at Yale New Haven Hospital, as well as a research fellowship through the Robert Wood Johnson Clinical Scholars Program at Yale University School of Medicine. She comes to Houston Methodist Sugar Land from Memorial Hermann Hospital in the Texas Medical Center, where she also served as an associate professor of neurology and program director of the epilepsy fellowship at McGovern Medicine School at the University of Texas Health Science Center – Houston. Sunday, May 13, 2018





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Mother’s Day barbecue

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The Wallis Knights of Columbus Council will hold its annual Mother’s Day barbecue chicken and sausage drive-thru at the Wallis Columbus Club Hall, 703 Columbus Road, from 10:30 a.m. on Sunday, May 13, until sold out. No sides will be sold. For more information, call 979-478-7268.

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berg. Texas Legacy Czech Band will provide the dancing music. For more information, call 281-232-3531.

Report on new San Felipe museum

A program presented by staff from the San Felipe de Austin State Historical Site will report on the newly opened state of the art museum at the park near Sealy. The $12 million facility is a joint product of the Texas Historical Commission and private partners. The Fort Bend County Historical Commission is hosting the program at its quarterly meeting on Tuesday, May 15 at 3 p.m. NOTE: Location of this meeting is the main meeting room of the George Memorial Library, 1001 Golfview in Richmond. The event is free and open to the public.

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Lexi Lew Cook

David Joseph Wardlow

Parents: Amanda & Austin Bryant Grandparents: Garrett & Diana Engelhardt

14 Months Old Parents: Cody & Sara Cook Grandparents: Diana Cook, John Towler, Janie Towler


Starting on Page 8B

18 Months Old

Parents: Danny & Chelsea Wardlow Grandparents: Pat Bruns, Tom & Devoni Wardlow, Shirley Corbett

Birth to 2 Years

Birth to 2 Years

2nd Place

Thank you to our advertisers for making our beautiful baby contest a winner

3 to 4 Years Sunday , May 13 is Mother’s Day. Herald Reporter Diana Nguyen asked our readers to share their fondest memories of their moms. Here’s what they had to say:

Wyatt Horak 4 Years Old

Parents: Kevin & Kelli Horak Grandparents: Pat Horak & Corrine Schumann

Daniel 3Ornelas: to 4 Years Me and my mom were best friends. She was really sweet, she was a wonderful cook. We loved to spend time in the kitchen together. Before she passed, the one thing was to learn all her cooking $500 methods. She OFF said, Invisalign for Moms! ‘I can’t be there to cook it for you, but I want to make sure you know how to cook it.’ That was awesome for her to teach me.

n nn Kamrin Sosa — George Junior High eighth-grader: She teaches me to have confidence and be comfortable with who I am. She influences by teaching me things about life and showing me how to handle situations. — Situations with my friends, with boys, with my sister a lot. One of my favorite memories of her is when we were running late for school one day. We have tile floors and she had on heels. She slid across the floor and she hit her head on the wall.

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n nn Fort Bend County Commissioner Vincent Morales: Mom is 81, not as active anymore, but Mom was always very outgoing, loving to all her family, always willing to do whatever it took to make my brother and I happy. She always put family first. Whether it was when my grandmother got up in age, when there was a need to take care of the grandkids, she always put family first.


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Fallen WW II pilot honored for service



13, 2018


BY MARQUITA GRIFFIN wreckage, Taylor in tow. Their position had been reported before hitting the water and after a difficult It was Nov. 11, 1942 and most of the several-hour rescue involving a Sikorcountry was remembering the 24th anni- ski S-39 amphibian aircraft and a patrol versary of the end of The Great War. boat, both Koym and Taylor were pulled On that same day pilots in the from the sea. Civil Air Patrol — a civilian However, both men auxiliary of the U.S. Army succumbed to hypoAir Corps formed in thermia, making 1941 to provide civilian them the sixth and air support through seventh Civil Air border and coastal Patrol pilots to patrols — took to lose their lives the skies to protect while on duty. shipping channels. A special reTwo men, 1st Lt. union Alfred Hermann Koym was Koym, who was laid to rest in from Rosenberg, and Yoakum beneath 1st Lt. James C. Taythe Civil Air Patrol lor, who was from Baton emblem on Nov. 18, Rouge, Louisiana, were 1942. among those Civil Air At the recent 86th Patrol pilots fulfilling A bronze replica of the Gold Medal Koym family retheir duties. — awarded to World War II members union held in East The two were flying of the Civil Air Patrol — was present- Bernard, Koym was their scheduled patrol ed to the Koym family at a recent re- posthumously honover the Gulf off the ored for his service union to honor Alfred H. Koym. Louisiana coast when with a certificate unexpectedly their airand bronze replica craft lost its engine and crashed into the of the Gold Medal, which are awarded to water. The impact injured Taylor, and World War II members of the Civil Air Koym not only removed him from the Patrol. sinking plane and inflated their life jackets, he was able to swim away from the SEE KOYM, PAGE 3A

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Fulshear High School junior Sydney Billings will be the first person to graduate from the high school.

Glenn Allen Mitchell, 76 Eric Shea Humble, 41 See page 5A

Today’s Scripture Your eyes will see the king in his beauty and view a land that stretches afar. Isaiah 33:17

Thought for Today “It is not until you become a mother that your judgment slowly turns to compassion and understanding.” — Erma Bombeck, American humorist (1927-1996)




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Going 1st class

Fulshear High School junior is 1st from new campus to graduate

BY AVERIL GLEASON 2016. The first graduating class is set to walk the stage in 2019. But the 16-year-old junior is graduatFulshear High School is full of firsts. ing early. The school’s juniors were the first “I think it’s pretty cool to know I’m to earn their class rings early this year. literally the only person graduating,” Students had the opportunity to order Sydney said. their letter jackets last year. “I love being able to say I’m one of the Nothing beats the first student to first people to graduate from my high graduate. school.” And Sydney Billings is doing just Sydney transferred from Foster High that. School in 2016. Fulshear High School opened its doors to freshmen and sophomores in SEE BILLINGS, PAGE 3A

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Lamar Consolidated ISD educators recognized for going ‘above and beyond’

BY DIANA NGUYEN ognition of your hard work and tion to your Special Education students.” George Ranch High School Assistant “Every child deserves a champion; an Principal Christopher G. Cuellar nomiadult who will never give up on them, who nated Masters, a life skills teacher who understands the power of connection and was also named the district’s Special Edinsists they become the best they can pos- ucation Teacher of the Month. sibly be.” — Rita Pierson, educator fea“She represents so much more than tured on TED Talks. that title for our campus and she certainThroughout the years of serving in La- ly represents the best of teachers for more mar Consolidated ISD as a teacher, prin- than one month of the year,” said Cuellar. cipal or paraprofessional, Tara Masters, “Tara represents true sacrifice and Hailey Volz, Debbie Isom and Toni Scott servant leadership for her students and championed the students in their lives. colleagues. One of the most giving people And it didn’t go unnoticed. I know on our campus, day in and day out, Masters, Volz, Isom and Scott each re- she goes above and beyond for her kidceived an LCISD Special Education Par- dos.” ents Advisory Committee Appreciation SEE LCISD, PAGE 8A Award at the last SEPAC meeting, “in rec-



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Dana Sheridan presents a Lamar Consolidated ISD SEPAC Appreciation Award to Williams Elementary School kindergarten teacher Hailey Voz.




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Sarah Webster of Richmond was one of 16 University of Dallas psychology majors to recently present a senior thesis during the spring 2018 semesOld ter. Her thesis was titled “You are My ann 4 Years Horak World: A Kelli Phenomenological SchumAnalysis of the & Understanding of Parenthood s: Kevin & Corrine When a Child is Diagnosed with a TerParent minal Illness.” Pat Horak


St. John’s UCC Women’s Guild to meet Wednesday

The Fort Bend Retired Educators 11:30 a.m. Associationwill hold its last meeting of The scholarship winners will be anthe 2017-18 program year on Wednes- nounced after the luncheon. The menu day, beginning at 11 a.m. in the St. includes chicken-wild rice casserole, John’s United Church of Christ parish a sweet pepper and tomato salad on hall, 1513 West Avenue in Rosenberg. fresh greens, hot rolls, brownie topped The retired teachers luncheon will with ice cream, and tea and coffee for begin at 11:15 a.m. with the induction $15. Email for resof new officers and lunch served at ervations.

I thought this was clever word play: “Why did the cows return to the marijuana field?” “It was the pot calling the cattle back!”

Around the Bend


Rosenberg community leader died while defending homeland

Jesse Mata: My mom [Olivia Mata] would always say, ‘It doesn’t matter how poor we are, that doesn’t mean you cannot be clean.’ She always made sure that when we went out to school, church, any outing, we were clean. She would make sure our hair was combed. you know in the farm, you’re dirty. But she would always tell us, ‘There’s no excuse to not be clean.’ She would also say, ‘always respect the elders. Whether you’re black, brown, white.’ In those days, that’s all that lived here. We grew up as a close-knit family. It was always her thing, be clean and respect your elders.

Fort Bend Journal

Old Bryant ardt 4 Years a & Austin Engelh s: Amand & Diana Parent : Garrett arents


Needville Boy Scout Troop 129 will hold its 2018 annual spaghetti dinner fundraiser on Saturday from 5-8 p.m. at St. Michael the Archangel Catholic Church Family Life Center. To-go plates or dine in and enjoy all you can eat for $8.

Wardlow Joseph David

3rd Place

Memories of Mom 7 Months Old Parents: Charlie & Brittany Toman Grandparents: Jeff & Sheri Hajovsky Bernadette & Charles Toman

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Kambri Toman

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Lexi Lew

Mother’s Day

Oh, What A Beautiful Baby!




FORT BEND February 2019

Valentino Cristiano Villarreal 1 Parents Year Old : Jerry and Beverly Grandp arents: Villarreal Faustino

and MillieHelen Torres, Villarreal


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“I am excited to join the team at Houston Methodist Sugar Land, which has a fantastic reputation for leading-edge neurological care,” said Hope. “I’m looking forward to working alongside my new colleagues at Houston Methodist Sugar Land Neurology Associates and to serving patients from across Fort Bend and surrounding areas.” Houston Methodist Sugar Land Neurology Associates offers diagnosis and treatment of a wide range of neurological disorders including migraines, sleep disorders, epilepsy, dementia, complex spine, and peripheral neurological disorders, neuromuscular disorders, movement disorders such as Parkinson’s disease, and more. To schedule an appointment with Dr. Hope or another neurologist at Houston Methodist Sugar Land Neurology Associates, call 281-201-6052. Visit to learn more about Houston Methodist Sugar Land Hospital.

The risks of an overly sedentary lifestyle


ealth experts call it “sitting disease.” It refers to when people spend more of their time behind a desk or steering wheel of a car or planted in front of a television than they do engaging in physical activity.According to the American Heart Association, sedentary jobs have increased by 83 percent since 1950, and technology has reduced many people’s need to get up and move. Inactivity is taking a considerable toll on public health. A study from the University of Cambridge equated inactivity with being obese.The Mayo Clinic advises that research has linked sedentary behavior to a host of health concerns, and found those who sat for more than eight hours a day with no physical activity had a risk of dying similar to the risks of fatality linked to obesity and smoking. Increased blood pressure, high blood sugar, abnormal cholesterol levels, and excess body fat all can be attributed to inactivity. Mental health can be adversely affected by a sedentary lifestyle as well. Australian researchers surveyed more than 3,300 government employees and found men who sat for more than six hours a day at work were 90 percent more likely to feel moderate psychological distress, such as restlessness, nervousness or hopelessness, than those who sat for less than three hours a day. In addition,a sedentary lifestyle can significantly increase a person’s risk for various types of cancer.A German meta-analysis of 43 studies involving four million people indicated those who sit the most have higher propensities to develop colon cancer, endometrial cancer and lung cancer. Johns Hopkins Medical Center says research shows that high levels of exercise at some point in the day can lessen some risk, but it’s not entirely effective if most of the rest of the day a person is inactive. Risk for cardiovascular disease increases significantly for people who spend 10 hours or more sitting each day. Various medical organizations recommend individuals get up and move at any opportunity to help reduce risks of inactivity. Erin Michos, M.D., M.H.S., associate director of preventive cardiology at the Ciccarone Center for the Prevention of Heart Disease, advises people who are very sedentary to aim for 4,000 steps per day. Such individuals can then build up to a target of 10,000 steps daily. The Mayo Clinic recommends these strategies to reduce the amount of time you spend sitting. • Stand while talking on the phone or watching television • Invest in a standing desk • Get up from sitting every 30 minutes • Walk at lunch or during meetings Sedentary lifestyles can affect health in many negative ways. But there are various ways to get up and go over the course of a typical day.


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