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Meet the Erath County Sheriff candidates|Page 7|

VOL. 9, NO. 3 November 7, 2019

Sheriff offers reward for identity of man behind ‘fake’ profile BY MAKENZIE PLUSNICK


Erath County Sheriff Matt Coates is offering a $1,000 reward on his re-election Facebook page to anyone who can prove who is behind what he considers to be a fake account created to post negatively about him. Coates posted a video about Keller on Oct. 20, captioned “FAKE PROFILES ARE FOR RUSSIANS!” The video is a skit set in the Old West where Coates puts up wanted posters, offering a reward to anyone who turns in a person using a Facebook account named James Keller. Keller has posted about Coates in the past. In the video, Coates says, “I got $1,000 to give to you, James Keller, if you will show


Crowded and underfunded shelter causes animal sickness, death BY ARYNN TOMSON Art Director

The video can be seen on the Matt Coates for Erath County Sheriff Facebook page. Screenshot from Coates’ Facebook video

up at my campaign headquarters… or $1,000 to anyone who can prove who that fake profile belongs to. It stops today.” The video has 263 reactions, 76 comments and 144 shares as of Nov. 6. Keller says the profile is not fake.

“My profile has been active for over three years. You can see posts that are public back to 2018,” Keller said in an interview over Facebook Messenger. “I don’t have a lot of friends on there and I locked it down so people can’t see a lot.” In a comment on

Coates’ video, Lynacy Wade wrote, “He’s not even a fake person. It’s a real dude. Real profile.” “I grew up with his daughter and used to be very close to his exdaughter-in-law and I used to be babysat with

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A Tarleton State University student adopted a kitten from the local shelter and one week later, the kitten died due to sickness. The student says the death occurred due to a lack of medical attention while at the shelter. Both the shelter and the student hope this will bring awareness to issues that arise in local shelters. Megan Reynolds, a sophomore nursing major, adopted a twomonth-old kitten from the Erath County Humane Society (ECHS) in late September. It died one week later, and Reynolds posted on Twitter about the phone call she had with shelter when she informed them

of the kitten’s death. “I called the Erath humane shelter I got my kitten from one week ago because she passed this morning due to inadequate treatment while being there, so I called and they said ‘Sorry’ then hung up on me,” Reynolds’ tweet said. According to Reynolds, her kitten started having seizures around 4 a.m. on Oct. 4, and she had to wait until the veterinary clinic opened for the kitten to be seen. Reynolds stayed close to the kitten to comfort it during the seizures. “I was just trying to hold her and pet her and just talk to her while trying to keep her warm.

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The Wall That Heals comes to Stephenville BY HALEY BARNETT

Multimedia Journalist

The Wall That Heals opened in Stephenville on Nov. 6 and will be here through Nov. 10. The Wall That Heals is a three-quarter scale replica of the Vietnam Veterans Memorial in Washington, D.C. Stephenville is one of the three Texas towns on the 2019 tour. In 1966, the Vietnam Veterans Memorial Fund unveiled a replica that is half-scale to the original Vietnam Veter-

ans Memorial. According to The Wall That Heals’ website, since the opening of The Wall That Heals, it has been displayed in close to 600 communities throughout the United States “spreading the Memorial’s healing legacy to millions.” “It is a great honor for Stephenville to be one of only three Texas cities chosen to host The Wall That Heals and especially significant to have the Memorial here so close to Veterans Day,” July Danley, president and

CEO of the Stephenville Chamber of Commerce, said. In addition to the replica of the wall, there is also a mobile education center. On the exterior of the trailer, there is a timeline of “The War and The Wall”. “Additional exhibits give visitors a better understanding of the legacy of the Vietnam Veterans Memorial and the collection of the items at The Wall,” The Wall That Heals’ web-

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The Wall That Heals is a three-quarter scale replica of the Vietnam Veterans Memorial in Washington, D.C. Photo courtesy

Find adventure with SlimPickins BY HALEY BARNETT

Multimedia Journalist

SlimPickins Outfitters (SPO) is owned by Jahmicah Dawes and his wife Heather and is the only outdoor store in Stephenville. When you walk in SPO, you are likely to hear music playing, see a toddler running around and see their dog, Bill Murray, taking a nap in the store. Dawes opened SPO in 2007 because he felt that it was what God was calling him to do. He believes that SPO is God’s business, not his own. “God told us to open a shop in Stephenville. We believe it was definitely God because we didn’t

want to stay in Stephenville,” Dawes said. After Dawes knew he was supposed to open a shop, he started looking around town for places to open one. He remembers seeing the building they now run SPO out of, the old Rexall Drug Store on the Stephenville square, and thinking how cool it would be to have that building. “We passed this building looking for places that were open for rent and I said, ‘Man, if we could have that building.’ It was the dopest building on the square,” he said. When reflecting back over their time at the store, Dawes had no

idea of what it would become. They trusted that God had a plan when he was called to open this business. “God is able to do abundantly more than we can think or imagine, and he has done that with this shop,” he said. SPO is an outdoor shop that sells products unique to the area. Dawes believe in local businesses supporting local businesses. Some of the products they sell include backpacks, fly fishing rods, coolers and other kinds of outdoor gear. “We sell outdoor apparel and footwear, gear and camping equipment,” Dawes said. “We

sell adventure.” Dawes wants to use SPO as a way to be active in the community of Stephenville. The focus of SPO is to build relationships and encourage people to go out and enjoy the outdoors. “We opened because God wanted us to be a place that we could focus on community,” Dawes said. “We are active in our community…through fly fishing, community yoga and The Sessions.” The Sessions are usually on the fourth Saturday of the month and include live and local music. SPO does many other events that invite the community to get to

The Dawes Family

know them and adventure out. “We want to be a relevant spot for our com-

Photo courtesy of Dawes

munity,” Dawes said. Every Wednesday is

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November 7, 2019




Tarleton shouldn’t be the best kept secret anymore



I recently went through a series of job interviews where I had to explain to several people where and what Tarleton is. The company I was interviewing at was based out of the Austin area, but the of-

fice I would be working in is in Dallas. I knew if I had gone to a school like the University of Texas or Texas Christian University, I could just say the name and there would be instant recognition. Instead, when I said Tarleton, I had to explain where Stephenville is and what Tarleton is like. I often bring up that I was involved in Greek life and a student-led newspaper on campus because the people interviewing me can usually relate to these topics and were involved in something similar. It gives us something that we can connect on. I know that students who go to bet-

ter-known schools often feel the same way, especially when they meet alumni from the same school. When I hear students say that Tarleton is the best kept secret in Texas, it bothers me. I want people to know about Tarleton. I want to say where I went to school and have it mean something. Our new president, James Hurley, feels the same way and often talks about keeping Tarleton an opportunity school for first-generation students or students from families who may not be able to afford to send their student to a larger university. It seems selfish to me

to want to keep a school like Tarleton, a more affordable option than many other schools, a secret just because we

town that doesn’t cost an arm and leg while they go to school. A secret is something hidden; it is not meant

is not an option to find out about this school and come here. I want to tell people where I received my degree and

“When I hear students say that Tarleton is the best kept secret in Texas, it bothers me. I want people to know about Tarleton. I want to say where I went to school and have it mean something.” want to be the best kept secret, especially as we transition into Division I. I would rather not be a secret and make Tarleton a place for students who may not be able to afford other schools or who want to live in a

to be shared. I want to share the experiences I’ve had at Tarleton with others. I don’t want Tarleton to be exclusive to those of us who just happen to stumble upon it. I want high school students who think college

have it mean something. Saying that Tarleton is the best kept secret may have meant something good for a while, but it is time for a change.

Getting involved on campus could change your life


Associate Producer

‘Get Involved!’ is something college students hear constantly. Our professors are constantly encouraging us to join clubs, student organizations, and all different kinds of activities.

So as students we are always asking ourselves ‘Is it truly important to get involved on campus?’ I believe it is important to get involved in your time at Tarleton, as being involved has many benefits. One of those benefits is that it gets you out of your comfort zone and makes you grow. When we are forced to get out of our comfort zones with people we don’t know and do things we aren’t accustomed to, it makes us grow. Our comfort zones are a place of retreat we like to sit in, but when we get pushed out of it, we are challenged

to grow and become a better version of ourselves. For me personally, being pushed out of my comfort zone has taught me about leadership and that it’s ok to fail. Our courage is found when we take a leap of faith and do something unsure of the outcome. Through leadership positions I’ve had in college, I’ve learned a lot about leading and what leadership means. Leadership is putting others above yourself and showing them the potential they have when they can’t see it with their own eyes. Always being kind and patient

Texan News Staff Makenzie Plusnick.............Editor-in-Chief

Haley Barnett....TTV Assoc. Producer

Hannah Mabry................Managing Editor

Samuel P. Tucker...........Sports Writer

Arynn Tomson.......................Art Director Whitley Combs..........................MMJ Rachel LaCroix..........TTV Exec. Producer Tierra Mauney...........................MMJ Sarah Hayner............TTV Assoc. Producer Deandre Hogg......Graduate Assistant

Faculty Advisers Dan Malone

Kathryn Jones Malone

Contact Us Email:

Mail: Box T-0230, Stephenville, TX 76402

Phone: (254) 968-0519

Opinions expressed in Texan News are not necessarily those of Tarleton State University or the student body.

FOLLOW US! @texannewstsu



because we don’t know anyone’s past or story. We can only choose to love them through what they are going through currently. We get the opportunity every day to go out of our way to be kind and patient with those around us. IT IS OKAY TO FAIL. While trying to succeed in classes, at work, and in other activities it can feel next to impossible to succeed. Sometimes while we are trying to hold everything together and balance everything we fail. Failure is inevitable in our lives, it is something we all will have to deal with at some time. Success is some-

thing we all are seeking and when we don’t succeed it feels like we’ve lost everything. Failure is something we generally view as negative except it’s not, failure is nothing more than the opportunity to do better. Failure is the opportunity to pick up the pieces you dropped and start again. Failure is the chance to be successful next time. I believe joining organizations and taking responsibility within them helps us learn this lesson. Getting involved in your time here at Tarleton is important and helps you to learn a lot. Sometimes this stuff

won’t be easy to learn, but it is worth it in the long run. We come to Tarleton to get an education, but I know due to my involvement on campus I will be leaving with much more than a degree in hand. I will be leaving changed due to my involvement on campus, people pushing me out of my comfort zone, and people showing me my potential when I couldn’t see it myself. So, I encourage you all to get involved and get invested in something, it will change your life.



November 7, 2019


Tarleton Texan Daniel McCants: A love for the game BY DEANDRE HOGG Graduate Assistant

Daniel McCants, a senior running back from Killeen, Texas, has been the Texans’ most explosive runner in recent memory. McCants has over 1,000 yards this season in only eight games. He is already on pace to break his season rushing numbers from last season and has seen several improvements from last year. “I would say my biggest improvement is being patient when I run,” McCants said. “I think my vision and my cuts got better with me slow-

McCants is the Texans’ running back. Photo courtesy Tarleton Athletics

ing down and really focusing on what I’m seeing.” McCants has always had a love and passion for the game. He knew this is what he wanted to do. “I’ve always wanted to play football. I don’t remember a time when I didn’t,” McCants said. Last season, McCants shared the backfield and carries with another star runner, Xavier Turner, who ran for 1,000 yards as well. The duo became Tarleton’s first pair of backs to run over 1,000 yards in the same season. McCants sees himself and Turner as a “thunder/lighting tandem.” “I feel me and X have two different running styles that are perfect together. It’s like thunder then lightning with us,” McCants said. With Turner going to the Arizona Cardinals this past offseason, McCants said his main focus is on this season and the team’s goals. How-

McCants was awarded LSC Offensive Player of the Week on Sept. 9, 2019.

Photo courtesy LSC Twitter

ever, it would really be come true to get drafted, cused on helping the what it will take to get a dream come true if but I’m just focused on Texans win a national over that hump. “Staying humble, he does get drafted by what we have here at championship this seastaying on the grind and not getting too high on ourselves,” McCants said. “For us to win the national championship, we just need to be what we are and that’s the Tarleton Texans.” a team in the upcoming Tarleton right now,” son, something that the McCants said. team came up short on draft in April. McCants is really fo- last season. He knows “It would be a dream

“I’ve always wanted to play football. I don’t remember a time when I didn’t.”

Tarleton Texans remain undefeated


The Tarleton Texan football team came out Saturday afternoon firing on all cylinders as they pummeled the Midwestern State Mustangs 66-7 at Memorial Stadium. With the victory the Texans clinched a share of the Lone Star Conference Championship. “We’ve got a lot of work left to do. I thought we played really well…when their backs are against the wall is usually when they’re at their best,” Tarleton Head Coach Todd Whitten said. The Texans were unstoppable, only punting four times in the game. Ben Holmes threw for 243 yards and four touchdowns. Three of those touchdowns went to Zamari Manning who broke the school record for receiving touchdowns in a season (17) and a career (29). Manning also leads the country in touchdown receptions in Division II. “It’s not something [that’s] a goal of mine. I take every day a day at a time…[I] believe in my God-given abilities. It’s a dream come true,” Manning said. Manning has played at Tarleton for just two

seasons after being recruited from Golden West College. His role on the Texans offense cannot be understated. He is Holmes’ favorite target for good reason. However, Tarleton wasn’t without its flaws. They committed 15 penalties for a total of 116 yards. Daniel McCants fumbled and allowed the Mustangs to recover it, and Holmes completed just 58.33% of his passes. Despite the mistakes, the Texans only allowed one touchdown, which came in the third quarter. The defense had four interceptions and two fumble recoveries. Two of the defense’s interceptions went into the arms of Prince Robinson who returned both for touchdowns. Ryan Payne also stepped up big in this game with an interception and a fumble recovery. “We prepared all week in practice…worked hard all week, and came out with the [win],” Payne said. The Mustangs could not escape their own mistakes. Triston Williams, the Mustangs quarterback, did not complete a pass to his own team in the first quarter. However, he did throw an interception to Payne. William’s strug-

The Texans are now one of three undefeated college football teams in Texas, joining Baylor University and University of Mary Hardin-Baylor. Photo by Kurt Mogonye

The Texans won Saturday’s game 66-7.

gles continued throughout the remainder of the game. He completed 10 of his 34 passes for 182 yards and no touchdowns. He finished the game with a passer rating of 50.8. “We’ll start working on ourselves tomorrow. Right now, they’ve got

to feel like crap for a while to understand how bad it should hurt them,” Mustangs Head Coach Bill Maskill said. Midwestern’s rushing attack didn’t prove to be too much for the Texans as they only gained 83 yards on 39 carries. The Mustang’s converted

Photo by Amanda Conner

just 3 of their 16 third down situations. The culmination of the Mustang’s mistakes was highlighted when they had an opportunity to put three points on the board with a field goal which they appeared to have made. However, just before the snap,

Maskill called a timeout, icing his own kicker. Following the timeout, the kick went wide, and the Mustangs remained scoreless. “There’s only one thought, we got our ass beat,” Maskill said.



November 7, 2019

Tarleton Organization Spotlight: Sociology Club BY RACHEL LACROIX Executive Producer

Tarleton’s Sociology Club meets once a week to discuss a wide range of topics, from lighthearted subjects such as superheroes, to more controversial issues like gun control. Each topic discussed in the club is selected by the students after they have offered up ideas and put them to a vote. The winning subject is analyzed and discussed by the students and faculty from varying points of view for the three weeks following the vote. “I enjoy meeting people and seeing other

peoples’ different views on things. I know I don’t know everything in the world, but people give me their [perspectives] on these topics that I may not have thought about,” said Alexandria Yarborough, sociology club president. The Sociology Club gives students a platform to start a discussion about what they think is important as well as an opportunity to gain knowledge about the world’s current events. During the discussions, anyone can speak, which allows everyone a chance to voice their opinion and possibly show someone else in the club a perspec-

tive that may differ from their own. The Sociology Club Adviser and Assistant Professor Derek Lehman believes that the students who participate in the club walk away from it better informed than they were before. “It’s an opportunity to get engaged in a conversation and get a perspective that’s different from your own a lot of times, think about social issues or just random things in society differently than what you might have otherwise thought about those things,” Lehman said. To be a part of the Sociology Club’s conversations, go to the meet-

spring semester of 2018. Graduating this December, it will be two years that I have worked with this wonderful group,” Oranday said. Oranday said that the trip to Quitaque included students with different backgrounds and that memories were made. “Our trip at Caprock Canyons was unique in the fact that we had a very diverse group, which made the trip extremely memorable. Throughout the weekend, we made great memories that I personally will never forget,” Oranday said. This particular group had many students that were first-time campers. Many first-time campers don’t have camping equipment, but OP takes care of that for students. “We also work at the checkout center and rent out outdoor equipment, such as tents, sleeping bags/pads, hammocks…” Oranday said. Prices for weekend and week rentals vary depending on the item. All information about prices can be found on the Tarleton website or in person at the Rec Center. The checkout center is at the back of

the Rec Center in the OP area and is open Monday through Friday from 3 p.m. to 6 p.m. Soyoung Yang, a junior engineering major, went on the trip as a first-time camper. “It was so nice that they provide things like a tent because this is my first time camping, and I didn’t want to buy an expensive tent to use only once,” Yang said. Oranday was captivated by the view at the canyons and took her Go-Pro to capture a time-lapse of the morning sunrise. “Out of all these amazing moments, my favorite part of the trip was taking the group to view the sunrise,” Oranday said. “The morning was extremely harmonious, and it was amazing to see the group wanting to stay longer. The landscape and the color of the canyons displayed a view that can’t be seen but only there.” Yang’s favorite part about the trip was sitting around the fire and trying new food. “My favorite part was being by the campfire when it was so cold and eating a s’more for the first time. It was so cool trying a traditional

Sociology Club meeting in O.A. Grant room 108.

Photo by Rachel LaCroix

ings in the O.A. Grant day. For more informa- Lehman at lehman@tarBuilding in Room 108 tion on the meetings, at 12 p.m. every Mon- visit TexanSync or email

Come camp with Outdoor Pursuits BY ARIEL SANCHEZ Guest Writer

Tarleton State University has many things to offer, specifically in the area of Outdoor Pursuits (OP). They endeavor to envelop Tarleton students with natural surroundings. Students have busy lives and may infrequently have an opportunity to observe nature. OP offers “Adventure Trips” ranging from a day long, a weekend or an extended trip. Outdoor Pursuits is located at the back of the Recreation Sports Center. OP hosted a pre-trip meeting on Oct. 21 at the climbing wall in the Rec Center for students who were going to Caprock Canyons in Quitaque, Texas, for the weekend of Oct. 25-27. OP employees explained the who, what, when, where and why of the trip. OP workers and Coordinator Collin Sandefur worked together to plan the trip. Senior criminal justice major Sarah Oranday, an OP employee, was one of the leaders who went to Caprock Canyons. “I was hired onto Outdoor Pursuits at the beginning of the

Sunrise view of the canyon from the campsite. Photo courtesy Soyoung Yang

Students who attended the trip on a hike. Photo courtesy Sua Kim

Soyoung Yang and Sua Kim ready to go on a hike in the cold morning. Photo courtesy Soyoung Yang

American camping desert,” Yang said. “I am an exchange student from South Korea and I really wanted to try things I would never do back home. I can’t wait to go on another trip.” The trip to Caprock Canyons cost $30, which included transportation, food on loca-

tion, entrance fees and all equipment. Outdoor Pursuits makes it easy for students to register for trips. You go to their page, www.tarleton. edu/campusrec/outdoorpursuits/adventure-trips. html, and pay online or in person at the checkout center. Outdoor Pursuits has

about five adventure trips they offer each semester. Students can come by the rock wall or checkout center at the Rec Center and talk with the staff about upcoming trips or ideas for a new trip. To stay up to date on all things outdoors, visit tarletonrec on Instagram and Facebook.

Tarleton students looking at the sunrise on the last day of the camping trip. Photo courtesy Soyoung Yang


November 7, 2019


Students’ opinions on moving to Division I BY WHITLEY COMBS Multimedia Journalist

Tarleton State recently accepted its invitation to join the NCAA Division I Conference [pending]. According to Tarleton Athletic Director Lonn Reisman, this has been something that Tarleton has been seeking since 2003. There are many things that go into account when switching to Division I, including funding, revenue, student enrollment, marketing, advertising and more. “I feel that we most definitely qualify as a Division I school, but I feel like as a Division I school we might not be Texas’ best kept secret anymore,” Kloe Corbin, a junior PREM said. “I’m fearful that the great professor/student relationships may decline because the class size may potentially increase. However, there’s a lot of benefits to going Division I and that’s exciting.”

Some students are looking forward to the move. Others are more focused on the current season and the how well the football team is doing. “It gives us something to believe in,” sophomore technology engineering major Cameron Hastings said. “It’s nice to have someone to root for day in and day out that has actually been successful in previous endeavors.” Hastings has attended multiple home games and tailgates and says that the “spirit of Tarleton and the student involvement is what makes this season so fun.” “It’s awesome watching the Texans play on Saturdays and even more fun when they win. Going Division I will hopefully and should just increase that student involvement and spirit overall. I have at least two years left here at Tarleton and being able to graduate from a Division I school is a

The Wall That Heals

of the effort to put a face

Continued from pg 1 to every name on The

Wall,” The Wall That Heals’ website said. “The Stephenville Chamber of Commerce has already received numerous calls from veterans and their families in surrounding communities as they are making plans to travel to Stephenville to visit the memorial,” Danley said. Another display in The Wall That Heals is the In Memory Honor Roll. This display is created to honor those who fought in the war that returned home and later died of a Vietnam-related illness. The other displays that will be in the mobile education center include two paper directories, a digital kiosk to search for names, a display of items representative of those left at the memorial in Washington and the Gold Star Bike. According to The Wall That Heals Website, the Gold Star Bike is a custom Harley for the mothers who lost sons to

very exciting thought,” Hastings continued. Some students like being a smaller, Division II school and are somewhat nervous for the spirit and comradery that will be affected when the shift to Division I takes place. Natalie Oud, a graduate student in accounting who completed her undergraduate degree at Tarleton as well, is slightly nervous for the change but remains positive regardless. “The only thing that makes me fearful for the switch to a Division I is the change that will potentially occur within Tarleton as a whole. Once Tarleton switches, many more students will be attracted to the campus which will cause Tarleton, a campus that used to be rather minute, to grow immensely,” Oud said. “While this isn’t necessarily a bad thing, it will be a dramatic shift for the students that are currently attending school.” Oud has always

cheered on the Texans and enjoys being a part of the student body and “having the chance to continue cheering them on once the shift happens.’’ Kyndal Harris, a junior business major, has similar thoughts. She believes that the switch to Division I is something that will send Tarleton in a positive direction. “…Tarleton is more than ready to become a Division I school being that our growth and commitment to improving is constantly increasing,” Harris said. Harris also thinks that the sports game attendance will increase. “Not only will the competition increase, but I think it will the increase the number of people coming out to the games as well, being that everyone is excited to see how our team will perform in a bigger division,” Harris said. “Especially after coming off of such a great season this year.” James Hurley, Tar-

the Vietnam War. “Because Stephenville is the only stop in the country leading up to Veterans Day, this exhibit destination is shaping up to be one of the most distinguished in the 2019 national tour,” Doug Svien, Stephenville’s mayor, said. Danley encouraged the community to come and visit The Wall That Heals in the Stephenville City Park and participate in all the other Veteran Day events the city is hosting. “We encourage everyone to come out Saturday morning for the Welcome Home Ceremony followed by the Veterans Day Parade through downtown Stephenville,” Danley said. The Wall That Heals exhibit will be open to visitors till 2 p.m. on Sunday, Nov. 10. For more information you can check out


Kloe Corbin Photo courtesy Corbin

Natalie Oud Photo courtesy Oud

Kyndal Harris Photo courtesy Harris

leton president, is hosting a Next Level Ready Celebration on Nov. 12 at 5:30 p.m. in Wisdom Gym. Students, faculty, staff, and the community are invited to join

Hurley as well as the Texas A&M System Chancellor John Sharp at the event, which will officially confirm Tarleton’s Division I move.

Continued from pg 1

Vinyl Wednesday, where customers can bring their own vinyl record to play or listen to the one SPO has playing in the store. On the first Saturday of the month, SPO has the Slim Saturday Pedal, a community bike ride. They have Community Yoga every second or third Thursday of the month. In addition, they have recently started doing Coffee and Missions on Tuesdays. SPO also has fly fishing classes that are every three or so months. Dawes is very passionate about living his life as a mission and going where God has called. He has outfitted people to go to Cambodia, Africa, Ukraine, Peru, Ecuador and many other places. They want to hear peoples’ stories and partner with them when they go on their own adventure to which God has called them. “We are doing this new initiative called Outfitting the Saints,” Dawes explained. “We are an outfitter for missionaries, so anyone going on a mission trip can come here and get outfitted. We would get to know them and…their stories and see how we could partner with them to provide them with the best gear.” In the future, Dawes wants to continue to encourage people to go outdoors and remind them that they can do that here, locally. He wants to keep the business in Stephenville and The Wall That Heals will be in town until Nov. 10. see how it can impact Photo courtesy the community.

site said. Cade Parrish is a sophomore kinesiology major and his grandfather, Charles Parrish, served in the Vietnam War. Parrish has never been to the Vietnam Veteran Memorial in Washington. He is excited to get to see something that memorializes his grandfather come to Stephenville. “I think it is cool that I’ll get to see something…that honors my grandfather,” Parrish said. “I think it is awesome that they do that so that people who don’t have the ability to go and see the actual one can still get a similar experience.” Hometown Heroes is one of the displays in the mobile education center. This display will have photos of service members who have listed that their home is in the local area. “The photos are part

Cameron Hastings Photo courtesy Hastings

SPO offers gear suitable for any outdoor adventure. Photo by Haley Barnett

“I would like to provide a source for education about the outdoors for this area. There are a lot of resources here, a beautiful park. This area is known for the hardworking people that farm and ranch. There are a lot of people that love the outdoors that don’t stay here to do that,” Dawes said. Dawes believes that there is innovation, creativity and potential in Stephenville and that it is growing and changing. He wants to continue to meet the needs of those locally and provide for them. “I want this place to be a place that can provide a need however and whatever that looks like,” Dawes said. Dawes loves hearing the stories of others adventuring out and hearing what they are doing. He believes that this business and life has

been their adventure. They welcome others to come see and be a part of their adventure. “This has been our adventure: marriage, running a store, having a kid. When you come in, you kind of see the adventure we are in,” Dawes said. While SlimPickins Outfitters is the Dawes’ adventure, they encourage you to go out and explore the world and to always, “Act Justly, Love Kindly, Serve Humbly.” SlimPickins Outfitters is located at 200 W. Washington St. For more information about SlimPickins Outfitters, you can check out

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‘Fake’ profile Continued from pg 1 his current wifr [sic],” Wade said. Keller believes that the video is “absolutely is a form of retaliation” for him posting on Facebook about Coates. In the past, Keller has posted about a lawsuit against Coates. “He could have offered a reward in a simple post. When he drew his weapon it’s worrisome… I feel very unsafe right now,” Keller said. “I’ve locked my profile down even more and will probably delete it eventually.” Keller has reached out to speak with Coates in the past. “I asked to speak with him before I ever posted anything, and he never replied. Now he wants to meet and does it in a threatening manner. That’s not right,” Keller said. “…All I wanted were … answers. He’s never once reached out to me personally. It’s sad we can’t question someone whose paycheck we pay.” Kent Howell, the Erath County sheriff candidate running against Coates, believes the man playing Keller in the video is meant to look like himself. “Everything in that video has to do with me,” Howell said. In one scene in the video, a man sits with his back to the camera in front of a computer. A sex blow-up doll, a framed photo of actress Rosie O’Donnell, a framed photo of the cartoon character Baby

Huey, license plates, fireman gear and other objects surround the computer. “That right there is supposed to be my wife,” Howell said about the framed photo of the actress. “It’s just wrong.” Howell also said that his campaign sign can be seen in the video, folded in half. He pointed to other objects in the video that he believed were in reference to him. “License plates, because I ran a license plate. I’m a fireman… People used to call me Baby Huey, and a blow-up doll just being creepy,” Howell explained. Howell believes the video was not appropriate for Coates to release. “The bad thing about that video is…he’s an elected official,” Howell said. “To do that is embarrassing to the community. He wants to call out somebody for their First Amendment rights.” “There is a person behind those accounts, and they are free to say what they want, regardless of if I agree with them or if it’s the truth. As a law enforcement officer, I respect our citizens’ right to free speech, and will never threaten to take that away,” Howell continued. During the video, Coates also pulled out a gun for a stand-off against the man behind the alleged fake profile. Howell believes Coates’ actions were “distasteful.” “Pulling your weapon while wearing your badge, acting in an offi-

November 7, 2019

Howell says the character in this scene is supposed to be a depiction of him. Screenshot from Coates’ Facebook video

cial capacity, in a spoof video like that makes a mockery of our profession,” Howell said. “It’s also not a joke to ever pull your weapon. We are trained to pull our weapon only to eliminate a threat. I am not

Coates explained that he did not mean for the video to be taken seriously. “I hope they take it for what it was and produced the same amount of seriousness that the fake profile deserved. It

set and assured it was unloaded and at no time was it pointed at any human being or animal. No threat was intended, rather to bring attention to the trials of defending oneself against a fictious character.”

“I asked to speak with him before I ever posted anything, and he never replied. Now he wants to meet and does it in a threatening manner. That’s not right ... He’s never once reached out to me personally. It’s sad we can’t question someone whose paycheck we pay.” threatened by words or accusations.” Keller also felt that Coates pulling out a weapon was inappropriate. “Regardless of who he’s aiming the visor to, it’s ridiculous to make a mockery of pulling your weapon. He’s more less saying if anyone questions him or challenges him, he will shoot. He’s got his sheriff badge on so (he) is acting in official capacity,” Keller said.

was parody that showcased the ridiculous practice of fake profiles,” Coates said. Coates explains the pulling of the gun. “The pulling of the gun was a direct opening scene from the show ‘Gunsmoke’ as were the characters in the video. I can assure the strictest of firearm safety was adhered to in filming the scene,” Coates explained. “Myself and two other firearm experts inspected the gun on the

He made the video to call attention to “fake profiles.” “Fake profiles often spread partial truths laced with incomplete details and lack full context. Sometimes they just lie. Some may feel the need for anonymity in expressing concerns. However, social media slander of one’s character, career and family is not the way of a civilized society,” Coates said. Coates challenged

Texan News “to pursue actual journalist content” and find Keller and interview him, as well as to several other actions including asking Keller why he has not collected the monetary reward or made arrangements with the Dublin Police Department to meet with Coates’ campaign staff at a safe location to pick up the reward, and determining if Keller is the person behind his account. Both Keller and Howell believe that the man in front of the computer was Chris Brooks, Erath County fire chief. Brooks denies that he was in the video. Keller sent a photo of himself holding a paper with the date printed on it to Texan News. He asked to remain private. Coates’ video can be found on homepage. Additional reporting by Sarah Hayner.

Rapes, fondling not included in safest campus in Texas report BY RENEE BURNS Guest Writer

Two months after Tarleton State University was named the safest college in Texas, the Clery Act, released on October 1, showed 14 rapes on campus. This count is higher, by at least double, than it has been in the last six years. In 2017 there were five, 2016 there were six, 2015 had four, 2014 had three and 2013 had seven. At the time of the rankings, only 2017’s data was available and, based on those statistics and their own methodology, ranked Tarleton No. 1, followed by West Texas A&M, Stephen F. Austin State, Texas State, and Texas A&M University-Commerce to round out the top five schools.

The Clery Act is a report released annually of crimes on campus and is required by law of every university in the nation. The Clery Act separates domestic violence, dating violence and stalking from other reported crimes. Due to this, rape and fondling do not appear in the same section. From this report, pulled hate crime and violence against women (VAWA) crime statistics. The specific VAWA used were domestic violence, dating violence and stalking according to Alexandra Williams, a data analyst for Not included were rape and fondling. Out of 13,011 students, 61% are women, meaning VAWA statistics are a factor in safety to more than 50% of students on campus. Tatiana Flores, a soph-

omore English major, felt she was “being lied to about the safety of the school.” “[It makes me feel] A little bit unsafe, to walk around. At night especially,” Flores said. Another student Sarah Boronkay a senior English major, felt as though rape and fondling should have been included in the study. “It’s not a legitimate rating then…that’s what I would consider violence against women,” Boronkay said. Tarleton’s Assistant Vice President of Marketing & Communication Cecilia Jacobs says the university has implemented new training for situations like sexual assault and rape over the last few years. “Survivors of sexual assault must trust that their report will be treated seriously and handled appropriately. Tarleton is

Tarleton was named the safest college in Texas by Your Local Security. Photo courtesy of Your Local Security

focused on fostering this confidence. As of 2017, all faculty and staff are required to take Campus Security Awareness Training. Additionally, we’ve worked hard to promote our Campus Survivor Advocate as

an important student resource,” Jacobs said. Jacobs believes the increased number of reports means students are reporting incidents more often. “We hope any increase in reported sexual vio-

lence reflects heightened awareness and a willingness of survivors to contact the proper officials,” she said. Tarleton’s survivor advocate can be reached at 254-968-9044.  


November 7, 2019

Erath County Sheriff candidate Kent Howell BY SARAH HAYNER Associate Producer

Kent Howell is one of two candidates currently running for Erath County Sheriff in the primary election in March 3, 2020. Howell says that serving as Erath County Sheriff has always been one of his professional goals. “Being elected sheriff is not about the title, the money nor the status some may think the position carries, but rather for the simple fact that I am fully committed to this community,” Howell said. “I consider the residents of Erath County my family and I want

to serve and protect each and every one of them. I have dedicated my life to public service, working as a law enforcement officer in Erath County for almost 13 years, as well as serving on the Erath County Fire Department for 14 years as a volunteer.” Howell says that one of his goals is to bring the department “back to the basics.” “Focus on proper training, putting more deputies out patrolling the county, prioritize the need for a full-time school resource officer for our county schools, complete much needed jail updates and to utilize our inmate work program on a broader

scale across the county,” Howell said. Since his departure from the sheriff’s department in May, he has been building his political campaign to run for sheriff. “I have been planning and running my campaign for sheriff. This is what I’m dedicating 100% of my time to because it’s more than a job for me,” Howell said. “This is my passion and I am fully vested in and dedicated to serving and protecting this community.” Howell was terminated from his deputy position at the sheriff’s department on charges that he was violating department policy by running


a license plate for personal use. He acknowledged that he shouldn’t have done that and that he learned from his mistake. “I take this job very seriously; I am very passionate about it. I’m not a disgruntled employee, and I know that is probably being portrayed a little bit because I did get fired,” Howell said. “There’s a lot of internal stuff that I don’t feel like is right for me to talk about...I am loyal to a fault. I’ll admit to my faults, mistakes. I ran the plate, and I shouldn’t have done it.” Howell visited the Texan News office to be interviewed. Howell wants the Photo by Sarah Hayner people of Erath County to know that he is dedicated to protecting Ste- I want to protect this and protect my home, community,” Howell and this community is phenville. “I’m passionate and said. “I want to stay here my home.”

Erath County Sheriff candidate Matt Coates BY SARAH HAYNER Associate Producer

Erath County Sheriff Matt Coates is in the race to get re-elected at the 2020 Republican Party Primary. Coates was made interim Sheriff back in December 2016, when the late sheriff Tommy Bryant took his own life. “Our campaign will focus on all the good things that the entire ECSO staff has worked hard to accomplish under my administration,” Matt Coates has been sheriff since December 2016. Photo courtesy Matt Coates’ Facebook Coates said in an e-mail

Shelter Continued from pg 1 (The vet) said the worms took over her body and led to infection, which traveled to her brain, causing the seizing,” Reynolds said. Serena Wright, the director of the ECHS, said she would never knowingly adopt out an animal that showed any signs of sickness. “I believed the kitten to be healthy at the time it was adopted, or I would not have adopted it out. Most medications and vaccinations cannot be given until they are a certain age. If this kitten was under 9 weeks of age, it would not have been dewormed or vaccinated,” Wright said. Wright said she believed the kitten may have gotten sick at the

the same (time) this kitten was adopted. We had a couple of kittens show sickness, but the others appeared healthy. After I got the call about the kitten, we put all our cats (in) quarantine,” Wright said. The Veterinary Centers of America website describes panleukopenia as a “decrease in the number of all of the white blood cells in the body. White blood cells play a major role in immunity and are important in defending against infections and diseases. Feline panleukopenia (FPL) is caused by a virus of the parvovirus family known as feline panleukopenia virus (FPLV). Parvoviruses are extremely tough viruses and are only killed by strong disinfectants including 2% household bleach. FPLV can survive in some envi-

od of Panleukopenia can take up to 14 days. Cats that are exposed to it can shed the virus for two to three days before showing signs,” Wright said. calls panleukopenia one of the deadliest cat diseases and that only 10% of cats have survived the virus. Reynolds says that she understands the issues present in the shelter, but she did not appreciate the way the phone call went, saying it was “uncalled for” on her Twitter page. Wright says she was unaware that Reynolds was hung up on during a phone call. “I only had one call where someone’s kitten died after it was adopted, and I apologized. The death of an animal, whether you have had it a week or one year, is an emotional time,”

ronments for a year or more.” Wright says the virus can be present in cats, but the symptoms are not apparent for days. “The incubation peri-

1997 upon relocating to Stephenville. “I have over two decades of experience and have served in all positions in the structure of a Sheriff’s office,” Coates said. Coates hopes, after re-election, that he can continue doing what he’s been doing as sheriff. “My goals after reelection is to keep doing what we are doing. Making the ECSO better than it was the day before,” Coates said.

The shelter serves Stephenville and the surronding areas. Photo courtesy ECHS Facebook

at the shelter do all they can to ensure a healthy environment for their animals, but due to limited resources, keeping up with the needs of a crowded shelter is difficult. “Our shelter is extremely underfunded and over capacity,” Wright said. “Our true capacity is 26 dogs and about 20 cats. We are pushing 70 dogs and 40 cats. The shelter is not in the greatest shape, but we clean and sanitize Wright said. “I then ex- daily. Clean pens, scoop plained that in our adop- poop, fresh food and tion agreement it says water...It is hard to keep we cannot guarantee the all the animals healthy when there are so many health of our animals.” Wright says the em- unvaccinated animals ployees and volunteers that come in. If any ani-

“Our shelter is extremely underfunded and over capacity, [and] is not in the greatest shape, but we clean and sanitize daily ... It is hard to keep all the animals healthy when there are so many unvaccinated animals that come in.” shelter but did not show symptoms until it was too late. “We are having a sickness with our cats. It is called feline panleukopenia. It started about

to Texan News. Coates main idea of his campaign is that he is going to “run on his record” to get re-elected as sheriff. “My record is one of progress, professionalism and fiscal responsibility. We will run on what the voters are most concerned with when they consider hiring their county sheriff,” Coates said. He has years of experience in law enforcement, as he worked in Big Spring, Texas since

“We will continue to train our people to be better and we will keep being present within the community, so we receive the trust from the citizens that they deserve in the sheriff’s office. We will continue to be above reproach.” Coates campaign is open to anyone that has questions. He claims his campaign and administration are an “open book.” Residents can find more information on Coates and his campaign at

mal shows symptoms of any illness, we do take them to the vet.” Wright says that she understands the pain of a pet dying, and the shelter honors their contract that states a new pet can be adopted if an incident occurs. She said that if an animal adopted from ECHS gets sick within two weeks, they may bring it back and will be able to get a new animal. Wright urges the community to spay, neuter and vaccinate their animals to help prevent more animal sickness and death. “I sincerely apologize that this young lady lost her kitten,” Wright said. “I understand that it was hard on her. When our

cats are off quarantine and we are sure they are all completely healthy, she is welcome to get another cat, just as our agreement states.” Reynolds says she has not spoken to anyone at the shelter since the incident. She also says that adopting from a shelter can be a risk and warns those looking to adopt to be aware of those risks. “Adopting is always a great option, and it feels great knowing you are rescuing a precious animal, but just to be cautious, because they could need more medical attention and sometimes it could already be too late by the time you adopt,” Reynolds said.

November 7, 2019



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