Women’s March Fort Worth

Over 6 thousand Fort Worth activists in attendance!
by Kathryn Kroll
On Saturday, January 21, 2017 marches were held throughout the US and internationally, to exercise the first amendment right to gather and protest the policies put forth by the new administration.
The march in Fort Worth was organized in under a week, by a handful of women who wanted to express their voices on a variety of women’s issues. The march was a great success.

In Fort Worth, six thousand people showed up. There were no arrests, no violence, no littering. (A lady in the march saw a to-go container that a bystander tossed in the street. She scooped up the styrofoam box and the nachos and bean dip off the street and walked with it untill she passed a trash can.)
The Fort Worth Police who stopped traffic downtown were all greeted by the marchers, and after the event, the women gathered on the courthouse steps to chant “THANK YOU POLICE.”
The ages ranged from very young girls all the way up to 90+ year old women. White, black, brown, Asian, Muslim, disabled, young, old, single or married, and everyone in between was represented.
But it was not just women. There were men. Single men, gay men, married men, married men with children, who had  their kiddos strapped on their backs. There were young men with their moms and sisters. There were even a few canines in the group, with their own signs.

After the march, these women organized Action Activities to remain connected to each other and to get more involved in the political process to express concerns to elected officials (if they will listen).
Congresswoman Kay Granger was out on the sidewalks, watching with one of her granddaughters. I truly hope the number of women and men in this march made an impression on her, and her granddaughter. A lack of Equal Pay will affect this granddaughter her entire adult life.
There is a group that has started on Facebook to keep lines of communication open with all the participants and to schedule events, like the upcoming post card writing party.

Welcome 2017

A new chapter begins
Some of you are elated that Donald Trump is our  President, some of you are genuinely scared for what the future holds for you. Some of you are avoiding the whole situation to maintain your zen.
Elected representatives for our area are on both sides of the issues we face as a city, county, state and Nation. I predict this year will have some highly emotional events that could cause divisions – if we get upset and do not use critical thinking skills, and mediation and compromise of any differences of opinion.
Here on the Eastside, our neighbors represent EVERY walk of life, ethnicity, culture, age group, and religion. To me, multi-cultural is like a good stew, with a variety of ingredients and spices. I enjoy the international customers that visit the shop! These families  have moved here to East Fort Worth, because we offer them an opportunity to live the American dream: family, love, home and meaningful employment. They come here because we are GOOD neighbors. Let us remember to keep it that way!
Invite any new families to attend your Neighborhood Association meetings or civic groups you belong to. I know every church, group and club in the area would welcome a new member or two.

We NEED a place for Tiny Homes in Fort Worth.

Fort Worth Needs a Tiny Home Village! One for Millenials & Retirees who want to live tiny, another to help end Homelessness!
Dear Fort Worth Mayor Betsy Price and City Council Members, Homeless Commission & Zoning Commission Members
by Kathryn Kroll, President of Brentwood-Oak Hills Neighborhood Association
Why can’t we find a place here in the city (but NOT on the Eastside) to build a tiny home village like this?
Here is a story about a group in Missouri who have found a way to solve homelessness for Veterans. There is a similar community just down the road in Austin that you can use as your “feasibility case study.”
My suggestion is to start the first community for homeless in an industrial area with a structure that could be converted to a community resources center/ kitchen and showers. It would put these houses in a job-central location, away from traditional residential locations.
Another Tiny Home Village area should be created for all the retirees who want to downsize but do not want to live in an apartment or retirement home, and for millenials who cannot afford traditional housing, but want to settle down and establish roots in a community of smaller, more affordable homes.
Both age groups are looking for a legal, zoned just for them location to park their tiny homes. Zoning needs to consider this housing trend in housing and get on it while the housing market has little competition for tiny villages.
Fort Worth could be the national leader in Tiny Home Villages, and infill the city with tax paying citizens! Over 60 THOUSAND people attended the Tiny Home Jamboree, a 3-day weekend event this summer in Colorado Springs, showcasing small cottage size homes, many on trailer frames to be mobile. Commercial tiny home builders and DIY kit manufacturers were there. Sixty thousand attendees is a small sampling of just how many people are interested in living in a tiny home!!
I have been promoting this idea for a Tiny Home Village since I discovered tiny homes a few years ago. (I plan to have one built to my specifications when I retire.)
Even allowing 4 tiny homes to share one traditional lot would help with urban infill and provide a low cost housing option. Four tiny homes on one lot would use as much water as a family of 5 in a single traditional home.

Here is another article about a tiny home community for veterans that’s completely finished in St. Petersburg.
“But wait, there’s more!”
Texas Monthly (magazine & website) reported on this tiny home village near Amarillo:
“The benefits of housing the homeless in tiny homes are manifold: they’re cheap and quick to construct, aesthetically quaint, environmentally friendly, and save cities tens of thousands of dollars with each person who gets to live in one. Thanks to donations and volunteers, Denning’s home in Amarillo will cost just $2,000 for Yellow City Community Outreach, the non-profit organization building his tiny abode. According to the Globe-News, this is the first of many tiny homes Yellow City hopes to build in Amarillo.”

The tiny village for the homeless in Austin is called Community First Village. Here is their website: http://mlf.org/community-first/.

I think several smaller versions of this could be located in each quadrant of Fort Worth without disrupting existing housing values. The villages could be futuristic, implementing solar power and LED lighting, organic gardening, upcycling craft center & retail store.
ONCE people have a real roof over their head, and a door they can shut and lock (something they never get in a shelter situation) then they are no longer HOMELESS.
Now they are just poor, in need of many medical and social services, but not out roaming the streets, resorting to crime to survive.
We should treat our fellow human better than we do pets and livestock.
Please implement this idea! Let me know how I can help. –KEK

Obit: Finis Smith

Pianist Finis Smith
 Killed by Drunk Driver
by Cory Sessions
Mr. Finis Smith was taken from us by a drunk driver.
He was one of the Greatest Musicians, Pianist and Soloist there ever was. A Nationally known maestro in Gospel Music. He always dawned a smile with all of his Greetings and salutations. Phonetically symbolic of his name he was one of the Finest people I have ever known. You were a great friend and neighbor who will be missed. I know your melodious voice is booming simultaneously as your fingers grace the keyboard in your final concert hall of Heaven.
Take a bow, “Well done faithful servant.”

Obit: John William Roach

John William Roach Obituary
John William “Big John” Roach passed away peacefully on Monday, Sept. 26, 2016, surrounded by family.
Big John was a proud Fort Worth native, but spent some childhood years in Longview, where his father was a railroad man. Exceptionally bright, he entered school at age 5 and moved quickly, heading to his beloved TCU on a music scholarship at age 15.
Leaving the pre-med program early, he found a job at the first business he came to, Binswanger Glass Co. “Johnny” began sweeping floors and ended as Vice-President 44 years later, having traveled the world. After retiring, he dedicated countless hours to the Code Blue COPs Program, patrolling his neighborhood, and staying involved in local school academic programs.
He loved family gatherings, never forgot a birthday, and was especially generous each Christmas. You couldn’t beat him at crosswords or trivia, as his knowledge level was phenomenal, and he never, ever wanted to stop learning. He loved politics and stirred it up at every opportunity.
John always had a story to tell and could keep your attention for hours, whether you liked it or not. He was truly one of a kind and will be sorely missed, more than he could ever know.
John was very active in his Eastern Hills Homeowners Association, patroled as part of Code Blue and was the car tossing the most candy at the EHHA 4th of July parade with his dog riding shotgun.
Survivors: Loving wife, Nita; children, Mike Reynolds (Mary), Steve Reynolds (Marcia), Kathleen Norris (Robert), Kris Reynolds (Aili) and Cynthia Robinson (Bill); grandchildren, Robert, Molly, Heather, Spencer, Valerie and Lexie; 13 great-grandchildren; he also counted Judi, Bevan, and Quianna as family.
Published in Star-Telegram on Sept. 29, 2016

Obit: BOHN Charter President, former FWISD Teacher Barbara Naish

BOHN Charter President, former FWISD Teacher Barbara Naish
Brentwood Oak Hills Neighborhood Association Charter President Barbara Jean Naish, 77, passed away in the very early morning hours Friday, Aug. 26, 2016. Barbara was born on Oct. 12, 1938, in Bremerton, Wash., to Wendell and Beatrice Lorraine Henderson Naish.
Since her father was a Navy dentist, her parents, younger sister, Patricia Carol, and she moved frequently. She graduated from Crawford High School in San Diego and later from Texas Christian University where she double-majored in English and French.
From 1961-1977, Barbara began her 28-year teaching career with a 16-year stint at Eastern Hills High School where she served as head of the foreign language department for two years. Prior to her retirement in 1989, Barbara taught at Polytechnic High School for two years, Daggett Middle School for one year, and Trimble Tech High School for nine years.
Her legacy was seeing her students overcome difficulties in life and become positive contributors to their communities. Barbara made an impact in her community through her various volunteer efforts, including All Saints Hospital where she was a candy striper. She was involved with The Mental Health and Retardation Anchorage Club advocating for adults with mental disabilities, the Fort Worth Independent School District Growth Center Project assisting at risk students, and Meals on Wheels delivering hot meals to home-bound citizens.
Even at home, Barbara was committed to developing relationships among her neighbors through her initiation and leadership of Citizens On Patrol and BOHN Association Inc., local neighborhood watch associations. A woman of Christian faith, Barbara was active in her Disciples of Christ Church, University Christian, and later, an Eastside fellowship.
Survivors: She is survived by her “children-in-love,” Ervin Farris (Joy) and Monica LaGrand (Alvin); her nephews, David Johnson and Steve Johnson; her niece, Kathy Johnson; and her cousins, Gwen Burson, Gary Henderson of Walla Walla, Wash., Steve Henderson, Lyle Naish of Firestone, Colo., Denice Lee of Lebanon, Ore., and Judy, Donna and Darleen Grindle.
UPDATE from Rita Vinson:  The dog and two of the three cats have been placed in homes.  One cat remains to be placed–Matilda.  She is grown but not old.  She is black with white feet, spayed, and claws removed front and back.  So she is definitely an indoor cat.  She was Barbara’s favorite cat, and she is the favorite of the person who has been caring for the pets while Barbara was in rehab and since.  Matilda’s vet records are on file with Dr. Kendrick of Country Club Hospital in Mansfield.  She is accustomed to being around the other cats.  I don’t know how she would do being around dogs because Barbara’s dog stayed outside.  She needs a new home before the executor starts dealing with the house with people coming and going. If/when I get a photo of her, I’ll pass it on.
Remember, the service for Barbara Naish is today, Thursday, at 3:30 p.m. at Greenwood Chapel on White Settlement Road at University Drive.
(There will be a notice on the Events page when the family is ready to have an estate sale. –Kat)

Gateway Park Ribbon Cutting Aug. 27

Gateway Park East now has upgraded pavement trails, eight new pedestrian bridges, a scenic Trinity River Overlook and a trailhead.
This Saturday! Eastsiders need to show up & show appreciation for the largest city park in the prettiest part of town.

Gateway Park Ribbon Cutting Aug. 27
Gateway Park East now has upgraded pavement trails, eight new pedestrian bridges, a scenic river overlook and a trailhead. An exciting component of the Central City portion of the Trinity River Vision is the revitalization of Gateway Park. Improvements include a major restoration of the park’s ecosystem, numerous and diverse recreational amenities, and the necessary flood storage to ensure the viability of the Central City flood control project.
At Gateway Park West, the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers is removing 1.4 million cubic yards of soil. The work is expected to be complete by early 2017 and will achieve two important goals: providing additional flood protection for the entire area and making way for future recreational enhancements such as soccer fields and trailhead amenities.
At Gateway Park East, two new scenic overlooks, a paved trail, five pedestrian bridges and a trailhead with picnic tables, benches and a restroom are now open in Gateway Park East. The final piece of the project connects the new trail and amenities directly to East First Street.
The ribbon cutting at Gateway Park was at 8 a.m. Aug. 27. To celebrate the opening, the Trinity River Vision Authority also hosted a 5K run, just after the ribbon cutting.

Police, community organizations launch new program to assist youth

Executive Committee members at a Code True USA planning meeting in Como were the Rev. Kyev P. Tatum Sr., life coach Reginald McHenry, Officer Tracy Carter, Eastern Hills head basketball coach Senecca Wall, former NBA player Oliver Miller, Officer John Sullivan and school resource officer Rico Jenkins.
The Fort Worth Police Department is teaming up with the National Basketball Association for the tipoff of a program whose goal is to create new opportunities for youth.
With a focus on youth 6-14 years old, Code True USA works with agencies, businesses, churches and universities to help improve children’s attitudes, academics and athleticism through the Jr. NBA Leadership Academy.
“This is a new day, and we are committed to providing new ways to reach out into the community and create positive avenues toward higher success for our children,” said Officer Tracy Carter, committee chairman and neighborhood police officer in the Lake Como community. “Code True is designed to instill in children and adults that we must create opportunities to be successful in the community.”
One of Fort Worth’s most well-known basketball stars is standing behind the program.
“Code True simply means that it’s up to you to be true to your conscience, true to your country and true to your community,” said Oliver Miller, a former Southwest High School standout who played nine years in the NBA.
The initiative will begin enrolling students in North Texas and will then establish chapters across the country.
“Fort Worth has always been on the cutting edge of innovation, and we believe that we have an unbelievable opportunity to help children and communities across the country to break down barriers and build new bridges,” said the Rev. Kyev Tatum, administrative executive director for the initiative.
These organizations are collaborating with the Police Department: Eastern Hills High School head basketball coach Senecca Wall, My Brother’s Keeper 180 Network; New Paths Leadership Academy; National Basketball Association; Gatorade Training Center; USA Youth Basketball Association; and Village of Fort Worth, USA.
Parents, schools and youth organizations are encouraged to become part of the Code True movement by signing up through the MBK 180 Network, an officially sanctioned Jr. NBA youth development organization, at 817-966-7625

How to use protected bike lanes

How to use protected bike lanes
Posted Aug. 15, 2016 – Fort Worth is making improvements for bicyclists by building safer and more comfortable bike lanes.
These protected bike lanes are being installed on Shiver Road (between Brook Hill Lane and Park Vista Boulevard) and Trace Ridge Parkway (between Shiver Road and Heritage Parkway) to make it easier for children and families to access Lone Star Elementary School.
Protected bike lanes are physically separated from motor vehicle traffic, often by curbs, parked cars or posts. Because they use physical barriers to separate people biking and driving, protected bike lanes are essential to building an age-friendly network of bike routes. This special type of bike lane makes riding on a street like riding on a trail and makes biking more attractive for children and families.
Here are tips for using protected bike lanes:
When turning across a bikeway, look both ways for people on bikes traveling in both directions.
Do not block areas striped in green with your vehicle.
Don’t drive in the designated bicycle space. You can turn across into driveways and at intersections, but yield to people riding bicycles in the bike lane. Signal your intentions.
Through bicyclists have the right-of-way at uncontrolled intersections, driveways and alleyways.
Park only in designated spaces outside of the bikeway.

Riding a bike
Yield to pedestrians and wheelchair users who may be crossing the road and protected bike lane and give an audible signal before overtaking and passing any pedestrian.
Watch for turning vehicles when approaching intersections, driveways and alleys.
Be alert for passing bicyclists in the bike lane and for pedestrians crossing the bike lane to access parked motor vehicles.
Stay to the right and allow faster users to pass safely.
Stop at all stop signs and traffic lights.
Make sure your bike has proper safety equipment, including lights if you’re riding at night.

Watch and listen for people riding bikes traveling from either direction just as you would when crossing a street.
Cross at crosswalks.
Be alert for people biking when crossing a protected bike lane to access a parked vehicle.

Enhanced Floodplain Master Plan due to go before City Council

Enhanced Floodplain Master Plan due to go before City Council
(Considering the massive flooding in Louisiana this week, this is a timely subject.)
In the coming weeks, the City Council will consider a proposed enhancement to the city’s Floodplain Master Plan to identify flood risks, their impact on the community and a prioritized action plan for reducing flood risks.
The plan is part of a growing public planning and interaction program being led by the Stormwater Management Division.
View the draft plan. (153 pages)
The enhanced Flood Management Plan follows the Federal Emergency Management Administration’s 10-step planning protocol and achieves these goals:
Documents flood risk areas citywide, with a focus on FEMA regulatory floodplains.
Evaluates economic impacts of flooding to properties in regulatory floodplains.
Evaluates levees, dams, mapped flood zones and drainage complaint locations.
Documents a prioritized mitigation action item list based on public input.

Following the FEMA planning protocol will help improve the city’s Community Rating System classification. CRS evaluates communities with high-performing floodplain management programs and rewards those communities by reducing flood insurance premiums for eligible policies.
Fort Worth has participated in CRS since 2012 and is rated as a Level 8 CRS community, earning a 10 percent premium discount on eligible flood insurance policies. City staff has stated that the CRS level can be improved to at least Level 7, which will result in an additional 5 percent premium discount on eligible flood insurance policies.
The City Plan Commission has recommended adopting the Flood Management Plan.

District 5 Community Meeting – July

Eastsiders vent their frustrations at the District 5 Community Meeting 
hosted by Councilwoman Gyna Bivens
by Wanda Conlin
District 5 Councilwoman Gyna Bivens did a yeoman’s job of putting together a meeting with strategic staff members to partner with citizens and business owners with issues which need solutions.
Unfortunately that partnership was drowned in negativity. Questions were answered by staff, but the answers were not what the audience as a whole wanted to hear. Anger was directed at those who had come to help, instead of being directed at those past council members who caused the clustering of the homeless and the problems that has created.
This is unfortunate, because East Fort Worth has such potential, and at this time we have three council members who seem truly interested in hearing from us.
The hope is that now that venting has occurred we can have a real work session and come up with real answers to the problems we all face in East Fort Worth. The problems are not isolated in one part of our community.

by Rita Vinson, BOHN and Judy Taylor, Handley
About 100-110 people attended Council Member Gyna Bivens’s District 5 Eastside Strategy Meeting at the Handley Meadowbrook Community (Recreation) Center Thursday night, July 18, from 5:30 p.m. to 7:15 p.m. The meeting was called in response to multiple complaints in July from Eastside leaders about intolerable conditions in two trouble spots in Handley.
Ms. Bivens rallied action from many city officials, many of whom attended the July 28 meeting, including Randle Harwood, Director of Planning and Development, with his Zoning Manager, Jocelyn Miller; two staff attorneys from the Legal Department; Aubrey Thagard, who supervises the Directions Home homeless program for the City; Catherine Huckaby from Community Engagement; and about a dozen officers from FWPD, Police NPO’s, Captain Shedd, and Deputy Chief Hadsell, Alan Speed,  and Code Compliance.
Handley Neighborhood Association (NA) President, Judy Taylor, got the ball rolling by writing to  Bivens on July 18.  Mike Phipps of West Meadowbrook NA took photos July 19, and LaWayne Hauser of Eastern Hills NA took more photos and wrote an impassioned email to Mayor Betsy Price with the subject line “Help Is Needed for the Eastside.”
The first trouble spot is the parking lot and alleyway by the new Pacesetters Day Labor office in the old Radio Shack space in the Minyard shopping strip in the 6300 block of Meadowbrook Drive.
LaWayne Hauser made a presentation of her photographs and observations, taken over several weeks, showing the unacceptable conditions, and possibly unlawful situations at the Meadowbrook Minyard’s Strip center.
Her presentation highlighted in many cases, the issues of homeless living on the property, diving into the clothing drop boxes, hassling customers desiring to patronize the businesses in the shopping center and otherwise being a nuisance to the community.
Some of this is caused by the homeless shelters themselves. The shelters open late afternoons, around 4, and if a person is not in line when the doors open, they will not get a bed. This puts the men who are trying to work a day job in a tough spot. They get off work too late in the day to be ensured a bed at the shelter, so they stay on site till the day labor office opens in the morning.
A solution would be a reservation system with the shelters to ensure that men & women who are working, are guaranteed a bed in the evenings, and a voucher from the day labor facility to prove they had worked that day.
Ms. Bivens met with the owner on Monday, July 25, and he was very cooperative in working on solutions for the problems that have arisen about people loitering, sleeping, and leaving trash and discarded clothes on the parking lot and alley after they take newer clothes from the clothes donation bin.
The gaming and prostitution, paired with drugs in a building of the Historic Handley village of the 6500 block of East Lancaster, property owned by Mark Scott Law Offices, was a big topic with the Law office from the city saying “there is nothing the police can do about the Gaming because of lawsuits against the city by the business owners.” The East Division Police officers are addressing the prostitution and other issues, as much as possible.
The issue of the convenience stores and the depravity they bring to a community, such as gaming, panhandling and vagrancy was also addressed, specifically naming one of the biggest neighborhood offenders: Cowboy Convenience Store on Handley Drive. The people patronizing this store have done damage to the neighboring businesses, which have had to increase their security measures to prevent additional  vandalism and attempted break-ins.
Mike Phipps said “It was a great opportunity to lay out a plan but I think many passed up the chance.  I wish those who just wanted to complain (without offering a solution) would have stayed home. We had a grand opportunity to address issues and lay out a future plan for this area and beyond, but most of the time was wasted complaining. It amazes me how these people think constant negativity  is productive.  I cant wait to hear what others might have to say.  I thought Gyna did a GREAT job putting together the meeting.”
The second trouble spot is 6505 East Lancaster Avenue, where a new business opened about June 28 with approved permits and certificates of occupancy.  However, is it apparently a gaming operation, has indications of other illicit activity, and a man in the rear of the building facing Kerr St. exposed himself in front of kids at a day care center.  The City passed an ordinance last year to crack down on businesses that house gaming operations, but as soon as they did, the City got sued.  A court issued a restraining order that prevents the City from enforcing the new ordinance.
Neighboring Handley business owners vented frustrations that these trouble spots have been causing.  Also attending were residents not only from Handley but also from Eastern Hills, Ryanwood, West Meadowbrook, Brentwood-Oak Hills, and White Lake Hills.
Gyna Bivens outlined several steps already taken and additional steps being addressed and will ask staff for an update to be presented to City Council.  When that appears on the City Council agenda, which is published online every Friday, Eastsiders need to attend en masse at the City Council meeting to let the Mayor and Council know we need their help in promoting positive development in East Fort Worth.
Scott W. wrote in and said: Appears the issues are the same issues we had 10+ years ago with no solutions or action plan for solutions.  My suggestion is to start with prayer and seek wisdom and guidance to find solutions.  Set Monday morning at 10:0am ( or pick another time) for every resident of the east side to pray for safety, wisdom, guidance, prosperity, protection, family resurrection, etc (be specific) in our community and command the demons of crime, drugs, prostitution, unemployment, poverty, etc.   to depart from our neighborhoods and be replaced by the Holy Spirit.    Say what you will but God moves through prayer.
2 Chronicles 7:14.   ” if my people, who are called by my name, will humble themselves and pray and seek my face and turn from their wicked ways, then I will hear from heaven, and I will forgive their sin and will heal their land.”
More info to come, as it arrives.
1. For the homeless men getting day jobs through temp agencies:
Have the agencies issue a ‘voucher of day employment’ that the homeless shelters are required to use to reserve a bed for the men that are working day jobs.
The current Shelter bed assignment policy punishes the men trying to get work by denying them a place to sleep, because they were not in line when the doors opened. Since the men know they will not have  a bed at the shelter, they camp nearby so they can be first in line at the temp agency and get work.

Handley High School History

Handley High School History
David McConnelll, a graduate of Handley High School, has completed a massive project: to save all the high school yearbooks and history of the school and students. He has written an article about the school’s history and has given us permission to publish it. If you have a Handley High School Yearbook, he is missing a few years that he needs to add to the data.

Looking Back—Handley and Handley High School
by David McConnell, Handley High School Class of 1959
On December 20, 1849, Tarrant County was founded and named after General Edward H. Tarrant, who had been instrumental in driving out the Indians. Tarrant County was formally organized in August 1850, when the first elections were held. The railroad arrived in 1876 and the rail line that extended to the Dallas area resulted in Handley and Hayterville (later renamed Arlington) coming into being. Handley was named after Major James Madison Handley of Georgia. After the Civil War Handley moved to the area while employed as a traveling salesman.
The first Handley School was built south of the Texas and Pacific tracks in 1877 and was located at the corner of Daggett (now Forest Avenue) and Main (now Hart Street). It was initially an ungraded school with one teacher. Later the building was expanded to accommodate more students. About 1898 construction of a new school building began on the corner of Forest and Church Streets where the old Masonic building now stands. That school was completed in 1901.
That same year Tarrant County Commissioners approved the creation of the Handley Independent School District. It operated from 1902 until 1928 when it was annexed by the Fort Worth Independent School District. Seven men were elected as trustees for the new school district: John Joseph Ferrell, William Pitt Craig, William David Weiler, William Louis Hunter, Richard Ladd, Thomas Kell, and Jacob Cook. Each of these men were buried at Rose Hill Cemetery (established in 1928) Major Handley is interred there as well. In1909 a larger school, constructed of red brick with white stone trim, was erected at 3127 Chilton Street. It was used for both elementary and primary grades until 1922 when a second brick building was built at 2925 Haynie Street that housed the Handley School from 1922 to 1959 (when the last class graduated from Handley High School).
An essay in the 1928 Handley School Yearbook reveals that the yearbook (sometimes referred to as an annual) had its origin back in 1920 connected with the creation of a school newspaper to document activities of school life. The school paper was to be called the Skyrocket. However, when the publication came about it was named “The Guidepost,” but only the initial issue was so named. Over the course of the next three years (1921, 1922, 1923), a semi-monthly publication called “The Skyrocket” was created to document school activities. It was in 1924 that the first annual, a “neat” fifty page booklet, was printed. In the year 1925, “The Skyrocket” appeared rather irregularly, but the best final edition that had ever been published, it was said at the time, appeared at the close of the school term.
At the beginning of the 1925-1926 term, “The Skyrocket” was discontinued because the Handley News began devoting a portion of the space to the school reports. However, popular demand among the students resulted in “The Skyrocket” being reinstated. Curiously, the 1930 yearbook was called “Greyhound,” but the football team continued to be called the Rockets. Then for some reason the name of the yearbook was changed in 1931 to “Orion” while the sports teams began using the Greyhound emblem. The 1931 year seems to have been the only year for an Orion yearbook. The yearbook for 1932 took the form of a scrapbook. Except for the years 1933, 1934, 1935, and 1936 when no yearbooks were published, Greyhound continued both as yearbook and as the school emblem until Handley High School was closed at the end of the 1959 school year.
Around 2009 (the 50th anniversary of the last graduating class of Handley High School) an effort was undertaken to find and scan as many of the Handley yearbooks as could be located. A total of 28 yearbooks were located and scanned—essentially all that were produced except for 1926, 1929, and 1939 (and the years no yearbooks were produced). Two complete sets of the scanned yearbooks have been produced (both 4-volume printed versions and digital versions of the complete set) and have been deposited with the Billy W. Sills Archive of the Fort Worth Independent School District and with the Fort Worth Genealogical Library, respectively. A third set has was produced for depositing with a suitable repository in the Handley area whenever one is located.
The yearbooks provide a wealth of insight about the history of Handley people. In the 1927 yearbook you can read the interesting guidance from the School Superintendent to students and teachers. You can read about activity groups such as “Declaimers” and “Debaters.” The 1928 issue of the Skyrocket boasts that “ninety percent of the 186 students who have finished here are or have been in college.” That seems to be an amazing feat for those days. Are we that accomplished in these days?
An index of all seniors from all of the years collected is included with the yearbook sets that includes in some cases burial locations of our deceased alumni in the form of Find-A-Grave memorial numbers. A document with links to each of the yearbooks for downloading can itself be downloaded at: http://tinyurl.com/qyy8yfh.
David McConnell, Handley High School Class of 1959

Handley High School Class of 1959 Web Site Link:

PDF of year by year links and contact information for David McConnell.

GASP: Geolocated Aerosol Sensing Project

GASP: Geolocated Aerosol Sensing Project
Project Summary
The aim of this proposal is engaging citizen scientists for the measurement of atmospheric aerosols using calibrated low-cost components that can be widely deployed. The citizen science engagement will occur across the Texas Dallas Fort Worth Metroplex, and in Chattanooga, TN. Continue reading “GASP: Geolocated Aerosol Sensing Project”

Alyce Boyd Obituary

Goodnight, Alyce
Alyce Boyd LDP_2526
Alyce Boyd passed away peacefully at Arlington Memorial Hospital on Wednesday July 20, 2016.
Visitation will be at Shannon Rose Hill Cemetery on Wednesday, July 27th from 6:00pm to 8:00pm.  Her service will be Thursday, July 28 at Shannon Rose Hill Chapel at 10:00am.
Alyce joined the COP team of Ryanwood in June of 1997. Alyce Boyd was long-time president of Ryanwood NA, was charter member and co-sponsor of the Neighborhoods of East Fort Worth, alliance, and served as an officer on the Fort Worth League of Neighborhood Associations.  We’ll all miss her bright smile.
Alyce  wrote her own obituary!
Ruby Alyce Simmons Boyd was born in Fort Worth on Aug. 6, 1931, daughter of Joseph Kelly and Ruby McCreary Simmons, both deceased. After graduating from high school in Gilmer, she attended East Texas Baptist College and Baylor University.
She worked in Dallas for Saladmaster Sales and Gibraltar Life Insurance, before marrying Obie Dale Boyd of Arlington in 1954. He passed away in 2008. They were residents of East Fort Worth for over 50 years and had been married 54 years at the time of his death.
Alyce retired from General Foods Corporation/Kraft Foods after 30 years. Not ready to rest, she worked for Myers & Porter Law Firm for two years and Riverbend Bank for seven years.
In 1994 Alyce became very involved in Ryanwood Neighborhood Association serving as president for 16 years. She also helped organize, as well as serve as president of Northeast Republican Club, Airport Cities Republican Women (now Metroplex Republican Women) and Tarrant Star Republican Women.
For 38 years she assisted her husband, precinct chair and election judge, in their precinct. She served as executive secretary of East Fort Worth Business Association for nine years, patrolled for Citizens On Patrol for many years, was a graduate of Fort Worth Citizens Police Academy, and served on several committees with the Police Department in East Fort Worth.
She was a strong advocate and never ceased to promote East Fort Worth whenever possible, representing them on the city’s Sustainability Committee and on the Parks Board as an appointee of Councilman Danny Scarth. She also volunteered for Meals on Wheels for several years.
Survivors: She leaves her stepbrother and first cousin, Dr. Joseph S. McCreary; stepsisters/first cousins, Ruth McCreary Koon and Jean McCreary Bergman; sisters-in-law, Nelma Boyd Bowers and Bonnie Boyd Chambers; 11 nephews and spouses; seven nieces; and a host of great-nephews and great-nieces, as well as many friends.
Funeral was Thursday, July 28 at Shannon Rose Hill Funeral Chapel. Interment: Dallas-Fort Worth National Cemetery.
Published in Star-Telegram on July 24, 2016

Daughters of the Republic of Texas settle with General Land Office

Long story short: George P. Bush just cost the taxpayers more than $200k in his insult to the most respected volunteer organization in Texas

Daughters of the Republic of Texas settle with General Land Office

State relinquishes all claims to historic archives as Daughters move forward

(AUSTIN, Texas) — The Daughters of the Republic of Texas and Texas Land Commissioner George P. Bush have reached a legal settlement to their yearlong dispute over an archival library housed on the Alamo grounds since 1950.

“The Daughters held fast and our prayers were answered,” said Dr. Betty J. Edwards, president general of the Daughters of the Republic of Texas. “With this behind us, we can refocus on our mission to ensure the next generation of Texans understand and appreciate our unique history as a sovereign republic.”

As a result of the settlement, the General Land Office dropped any ownership claims to the Daughters of the Republic of Texas Library Collection. The collection closed to the public on June 1 to prepare for its move from its historic home adjacent to the Alamo Shrine to the Texas A&M-San Antonio campus. Through the agreement, Bush also agreed to reimburse the Daughters $200,000 for legal expenses.

Shortly after taking office in 2015, Bush ordered the Daughters and their staff to be locked out of the library after he terminated their management contract for the Alamo. DRT staff were only able to reenter the library after the Daughters received a temporary restraining order against Commissioner Bush and the GLO.

Lamont Jefferson, who negotiated the settlement on behalf of the Daughters of the Republic of Texas, said he was pleased with the result.

“The Daughters of the Republic of Texas are a respected organization of women who honor and preserve our state’s history. This lawsuit was about protecting individual liberties against the overreach of the state.” Jefferson said. “This settlement will allow the Daughters to return to their work telling the story of Texas, which they have done so well now for almost 125 years.”

Edwards said the more than 7,000 members of the Daughters of the Republic of Texas are up to the task.

“We may just be a nonprofit organization of women, but we are Texas women,” she said. “We will persevere, and we will succeed.”


For more information, contact: Jim Suydam (512-542-9955)                                                                                               

June 24, 2016

1 in 5 Nursing Home Residents Are Given Drugs That Are Unnecessary and Extremely Dangerous

Antipsychotics in Texas Nursing Homes 1 in 5 Nursing Home Residents Are Given Drugs That Are Unnecessary and Extremely Dangerous


AARP is a nonpartisan, nonprofit advocacy organization with a membership of more than 38 million, including 2.3 million Texans.

AUSTIN, Texas – Nursing homes in Texas rank among the nation’s worst offenders in improperly prescribing antipsychotic medications, according to new data that sheds light on the state’s inadequate attempts to deal with the problem of chemical restraint of vulnerable people in long-term care facilities.

In the latest report on the issue from the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services, Texas ranks 48th in the nation in the prevalence of antipsychotic use for long-stay nursing home residents. The report shows that roughly 1 in 5 residents — or about 19,000 people each month — in Texas’ 1,200-plus nursing homes are being inappropriately given the powerful drugs, which can result in serious harm. “The misuse of antipsychotic drugs as chemical restraints is an all-too-common but preventable practice,” said AARP Texas Director Bob Jackson.

“It’s time for the industry, state regulators and legislators to end this harmful tactic.” Antipsychotics are approved mainly to treat serious mental illnesses like schizophrenia and bipolar disorder. But federal and state reports show that nursing home residents are receiving antipsychotic drugs for off-label uses, sometimes to suppress the anxiety or aggression that can go with Alzheimer’s disease and other dementia. For elderly residents who have dementia, medical experts and government officials say antipsychotics are only appropriate in a small number of instances. Significant morbidity — including higher blood sugar and cholesterol levels, weight gain, increased risk of falls, and decreased cognition – also are associated with the use of antipsychotics.

These complications can lead to or cause a worsening of heart disease, cancers and other diagnoses known to affect older adults. In 2015, the Texas Sunset Advisory Commission found serious flaws in the oversight of nursing homes in Texas. It called on the Legislature to enact a slate of reforms to clamp down on bad actors in the nursing home field.

Though widely supported in the Legislature, most of the recommendations have not been enacted into law. “When the Legislature reconvenes in January 2017, AARP Texas will again urge lawmakers and other state officials to prioritize and pass legislation to improve nursing home quality in Texas,” said Jackson. Several years ago, in response to concerns that nursing homes were routinely administering antipsychotic medications inappropriately, federal officials established a public-private alliance to promote changes.

In Texas, there are several state-led initiatives to help nursing homes reduce the unnecessary use of the medications, including programs for patients with dementia that work to help residents reconnect with the world through specific, music-triggered memories. For information about the Texas initiatives, visit the Texas Department of Aging and Disability Services site at:

http://www.dads.state.tx.us/providers/qmp/evidence-based-best-practices/nursing-facilities/antipsychotics.html To see the latest report from CMS about antipsychotics in nursing homes, go to: http://states.aarp.org/wp-content/uploads/2016/06/data-re-antipsychotic-drug-use-in-nursing-homes.pdf