First Financial Bank employees greet with smiles, hellos and little dishes of chocolate. They’re helping customers do business in Port Arthur. The Greater Port Arthur Chamber of Commerce Ambassadors presented them with the May Business of the Month honor in recognition of community spirit and service.Paige Snyder, membership development coordinator at the Chamber, said the criteria for business of the month selection includes a presence in the community, being active in the Chamber and longevity.“When the Chamber Ambassadors reviewed the membership listing, it was crystal clear that First Financial Bank and Blaine Caillier was a perfect candidate to receive this award,” Snyder said. “Stop by and congratulate the staff at First Financial Bank.”Caillier, vice president, responded with praise for the staff and customers.“It’s an honor to be recognized as business of the month,” Caillier said. “We really appreciate what all the chamber has done for our bank since we opened our Port Arthur location in late 2011. We have a great hometown staff, great leadership and great loyal customers, who have all played a significant role in our success in Mid & South Jefferson County.To get in with the Chamber Ambassador team, call Paige Snyder at 409-963-1107.
By Daucy CrizerThe News correspondentBAYTOWN — Senior Kody Cropper spearheaded a stellar ground attack to lead Port Neches-Groves to a convincing 45-10 win over Baytown Lee in the District 22-5A opener for both schools Thursday night at Stallworth Stadium. PN-G added a safety with 5:42 left in the game. Punting from their own 8 yard line, a low snapped led to the punter being tackled in the end zone for a safety to make the score 45-3.Lee put together its only scoring drive of the night to close out the game’s scoring. After taking over on downs from the Indians, Javarius Irving capped an 8-play scoring drive with a 12-yard touchdown run to make the final score 45-10.“I’m very proud of our defense,” Faircloth said. “Their quarterback (Javarius Irving) is a very good player. I thought our defense did a very good job of getting off of blocks and making tackles.”Cropper led all rusher with 165 yards on 20 carries and a touchdown. Runnels added 83 yards on 10 carries and a score. Morse completed 13 of 17 passes for 171 yards and three touchdowns. He also rushed for a score. Sullivan caught five passes for 86 yards and Jack Giblin had three catches for 31 yards.“We tried to mix in the pass a little bit and not let them take that totally away,” said Faircloth. “Adam (Morse) did a good job and our receivers did a good job getting open. “When asked about the connection Morse and Sullivan seemed to have going Thursday night, Faircloth responded, “They have a good connection every night. They have good chemistry and he just knows where Sullivan is going to be.”After forcing a quick three-and-out on Lee’s opening possession of the game, PN-G drove right down the field to score on its first possession. Cropper capped the 9-play, 68-yard drive with a 4-yard touchdown run and a quick 7-0 lead. After stopping the Ganders on downs, the Indians responded with another scoring drive. Cropper carried four times on the drive for 58 yards. Morse scored on a 3-yard quarterback keeper to take a 14-0 lead.Lee answered with a scoring drive of its own on the ensuing possession. Zavier Wright carried twice for 19 yards to jump start the drive. Consecutive completions from Javarius Irving to Skylar Stewart of 14 and 6 yards put the ball at the PN-G 10. The drive stalled and Rigoberto Vargas connected on a 20-yard field goal to make the score 14-3.The Indians went back to work in the second quarter with a 7-play, 77-yard scoring drive. Cropper carried four straight times for 30 yards and Morse hit Sullivan for a 23-yard completion. Jace Runnels capped the drive with a 6-yard TD run to extend the Indians lead to 21-3.PN-G scored again on its final possession of the half. Taking over at their own 41 with 2:01 remaining, the Indians navigated the 59 yards in 1:02. Morse and Giblin connected on completions of 15 and 11 yards. Morse hit Sullivan on an 18-yard scoring strike to give the Indians a 28-3 halftime lead.Irving completed 10 of 20 passes for 64 yards. He rushed for 45 yards on 15 carries and one touchdown. Wright added 56 yards on nine carries. Javier Estrada had four catches for 16 yards and Stewart finished with three catches for 32 yards. “I thought we played well,” said PN-G coach Brandon Faircloth. “They [Lee] came out in a little bit different defense than we thought we were going to be getting, but our offensive line did a really good job.“Overall, it was a great effort by the kids tonight. Wins aren’t easy to come by in this district, so every time you get one you have to be satisfied.”The Indians gained 259 yards rushing on 39 carries, good for a healthy 6.6 yards per carry. PN-G also had 171 yards passing to amass 430 total yards of offense. The Indians defense held Lee to just 178 total yards, 114 on the ground and 64 in the air. “That’s what they were giving us,” said Faircloth of the ground game. “They put some guys in our receivers’ faces and forced us to run the ball. Our O-line responded and our backs did a really good job running the ball. I’m very proud of them.”Already leading 28-3, PN-G received the second-half kickoff, which was a failed onside attempt by the Ganders, and marched 49 yards in four plays to open the third quarter scoring. Adam Morse hit Jace Runnels for an 11-yard completion and Cropper rushed for 10 yards.That set up a 33-yard scoring strike from Morse to Caisen Sullivan. To further prove to the Ganders that it just wasn’t their night, Lee blocked the extra point only to have Morse pick up the ball and hit Dylan McGough for a two-point conversion to make the score 36-3.The Indians scored again early in the fourth quarter, with Morse connecting with McGough on an 8-yard touchdown pass to push the lead to 43-3. That capped a seven-play, 45-yard scoring drive.
He asked me about growing up in a big chaotic family.“What was it like to live with so many?” he asked. “What were Gran and Papaw like back then?”It was a bit crowded with six family members. He couldn’t imagine adding 10 more.All the while, we took turns redirecting their toddler as he explored electrical sockets and low-lying cabinets. Bill’s wife, Claudia, who grew up in a different culture, threw in a few of her own family stories. By the end of the weekend, I knew all of them better. My nephew brought his family for an unexpected visit last week. His reason for coming was not a happy one. The wife of his dear friend had died of cancer. They came to attend the funeral.As they headquartered from our home over the weekend, we bonded. In the process, I noticed two things. Tragedies make blessings stand out. Family is the biggest blessing of them all.My sister Cecelia’s kids and mine did not grow up in the same town. As a result, we knew our nieces and nephews more by reputation than relationship.\ Next UpHer oldest child, Bill, has always been a standout. He made good grades in school. After graduation, he earned a solid job and has been climbing the business ladder ever since.I know a lot about this kid. I’ve been to his birthday parties and I’ve danced at his wedding. I know about him but I don’t “know” him.At least I didn’t until he came to stay at our house with his wife and 1-year-old son. Over cups of tea, we looked through family albums. Bill is close to his siblings. I am close to mine. As it turns out, we have quite a bit in common. At one point, we called our son and daughter-in-law.“Bring our grandsons over. Your cousin is here.”Pretty soon we had two dogs, three toddlers and four “30-somethings” filling up our living room. In a more tranquil moment, I looked over to see one of the young fathers reading a picture book to a captivated 2-year-old. It was not his 2-year-old. That made the scene sweeter still.My grown son and I had a tender moment of our own a few weeks ago.He and his wife manufacture a gluten free, grain free, low carb flour. They produce tortillas, cookies, bread, muffins, and pizzas by the box load.Since we keep their kids, we get free goodies. In other words, I work for food. Knowing my affinity for baking, they have started bringing me bags of seed flour instead of baked goods.I didn’t know how to cut down the recipe so Daniel gave me a baking lesson.I tied on my apron and the clock rolled back. I remembered him standing on a chair at the kitchen counter. He spooned out baking soda. He cracked eggs. He stirred batter.This time around our roles reversed. He was the one telling me what to do.We added carrots and cinnamon. We cut back on sugar and vanilla. In the end, we invented a new recipe. It was fun to be creative. It was even more fun to have alone time with my grown son. When we sang “Do you know the muffin man?” so many years ago, I had no idea it would one day hit so close to home.In just a few days, our family will sit around a table heavy with turkey and healthy breadstuffs baked by our kids. I won’t have any trouble recalling my blessings.Steady work, a comfortable home. These are nice things that I never take for granted. Having two grandsons who live down the street? Those are the real blessings.Do you have a cousin or an uncle you haven’t seen for awhile? An estranged relative who might be dining alone this Thursday?Run to the phone and invite Uncle Harold to your table for Thanksgiving dinner. He may be a pain in the posterior, but he is “your” pain in the posterior.Family is the biggest blessing of all.Donia Caspersen Crouch was raised in Southeast Texas and lives in Austin. Want more? Donia’s Stories of Hope and Humor can be ordered at [email protected]
Death noticesHoward A. Young, 93, of Beaumont died Friday, Aug. 12, 2016. Broussard’s, Major Drive, Beaumont. Bettye DeSoto, Broussard’s, Major Drive, Beaumont, 2 p.m. Services today Next Up
He is survived by his wife, Linda Phillips Degen of Nederland; daughters, Gail Bush of Grand Cayman Island, Cami Wade of Tomball, TX and Gina Clarke of Nederland, TX; sons, Paul Nixon of Grand Cayman, Presley Powery of Grand Cayman Island and Joseph Degen, Jr. of Nederland, TX; grandchildren, Shane Bothwell, Bree Ann Nixon, Adriel Ramirez, Andrew Degen, Elise Wade, Erin Clarke, Adam Clarke and 4 great grandchildren. Josef is preceded in death by his parents and grandson, James Bothwell.There will be a gathering of family and friends on Monday, September 5, 2016 from 5:30 p.m. to 7:30 p.m. at Melancon’s Funeral Home in Nederland, TX. There will be funeral service on Tuesday, September 6, 2016 at 1:00 p.m. at Melancon’s Funeral Home in Nederland, TX with a burial at Memory Gardens Cemetery in Nederland, TX.Online guest registry available at www.melancons.org Josef Alan Degen, 77, also known as “Texaco Joe”, “Degie” and “Coconut Joe” of Nederland, passed away Thursday, September 1, 2016. Josef was born July 14, 1939 in Grand Cayman B.W.I. to the late Josef and Leolyn Bodden Degen. Josef was a seaman on the ship, Connecticut for Texaco Oil Company.
Detectives conducting surveillance saw suspicious activity not related to their case that led to the arrest of a Beaumont woman for narcotics possession on Tuesday. Jefferson County Narcotics Task Force members were conducting surveillance in Beaumont and reportedly saw a white Chevrolet car with two white female inside that seemed to be selling narcotics, according to a press release from JSCO.One of the women, Heather Pina, 28, of Beaumont, was found to be in possession of 28 pills of Dilaudid.Dilaudid pills.Pina allegedly made a statement about the incident in which the pills were being sold for $40. Pina was arrested for felony possession of a controlled substance.Dilaudid, which is hydromorphone, is in the opioids classification and acts as a strong pain medication.
Casa Ole on Twin City suffered minor damage after a neon light fixture shorted out under an awning about 2:30 a.m. Monday, according to information from the Port Arthur Fire Department. Next Up The eatery is currently being repaired after tropical Storm Harvey’s flooding.
Carpenter said the wreck scene occurred at a “major thoroughfare.”“Definitely, impacts were felt,” she said.Police later responded to a shooting in the 2800 block of 24th Street on Thursday afternoon, but were unsure if that shooting was related. Next UpThe driver, whose identify was not released by police by early Thursday evening, died from an apparent gunshot wound sustained before the wreck.Police investigators remained at the scene into the evening, diverting traffic away from the normally busy southbound lanes by Memorial Baptist Church.City spokeswoman Risa Carpenter said police were called to the wreck scene at 11:32 a.m., where distressed motorists were outside of their wrecked vehicles and and a passenger in the shooting victim’s car, apparently trapped inside, screamed for help. A motorist from a nearby vehicle said someone in the car had been shot. The deadly scenario apparently began minutes before, when the driver of the white, southbound car was shot at or near 6900 Memorial, police believe.Other motorists saw the driver of a white, southbound vehicle speed through a three-way stop sign near the Medical Center of Southeast Texas, gain access to Highway 69 and drive in an erratic manner just prior to the wreck.Seven people at the collision site were transported to area hospitals, and police, who were investigating, closed the southbound lanes of Memorial, a process which took most or all of the afternoon.Carpenter said investigators apparently completed their work in the area of the suspected shooting scene earlier in the afternoon. By Ken [email protected] driver of a speeding car crossed Highway 69 at 39th Street in Port Arthur late Thursday morning, causing a five-vehicle accident and creating mayhem at the busy intersection.
Police believe she was driving at a high rate of speed in the 4100 block of 32nd Street when she went over the railroad tracks around 11:14 p.m. The woman lost control of the vehicle and struck a tree, according to police. She was not wearing a seat belt.PAPD Deputy Chief Martin “Bubba” Blitch said the woman was listed in serious condition at St. Elizabeth Hospital in Beaumont. A woman remains hospitalized after her car became airborne and struck a tree late Saturday night.
Nygard recorded two clean sheets last week, improving her goals-against average to just 0.83 goals a game, one of the best marks in the conference. She saved all 13 shots that made their way on-goal.This marks the fourth time in program history that Lamar has swept the Southland weekly honors, with the last coming in the first week of the 2017 season. The three Cards honored this week mark the fourth, fifth, and sixth weekly awards captured by Lamar in 2018. Juliana Ocampo was named the Offensive Player of the Week on Sept. 11, and Peskin and Jocelyn Hanrath captured the Offensive and Goalie honors, respectively, in the first week of the 2018 season. Manibo was part of an impressive back line that stopped two SLC opponents from scoring in 200 minutes of action despite facing 40 shots. Manibo and her defender compatriots allowed just 13 of those shots to be directed towards the Cardinal goal, deflecting or blocking the other 27 attempts. Kelso Peskin was named the Southland Offensive Player of the Week, Sophia Manibo took home the Defensive Player of the Week honors, and Sandra Nygard captured the Goalkeeper of the Week title.Peskin had one goal and one assist over the two games with three more shots, including one on-goal, against Southeastern. The senior from Cape Town, South Africa, is pacing the team offensively with 14 points on the year — six goals and two assists. Lamar sports informationFRISCO — Coming off a shutout week that included a 0-0 tie against Southeastern Louisiana and a 2-0 victory at Nicholls, Lamar’s women’s soccer team swept the Southland Conference weekly awards, as announced by the league office on Tuesday.