November 30, 2015


Susie (Capps) Jones grew up in Diboll and graduated from DHS and now teaches in the Central. ISD. She shared with me that Central High School has two campus wide community service days in their calendar year to provide opportunities and engage their students in activities that promote service to others. They have one day in the fall before Thanksgiving break and one day in the spring around the Easter break when students load buses with club sponsors and teachers and go out to various locations to serve and “give back”. She stated, “CHS Superintendent, Dr. Allan Garner and CHS Principal Justin Risner see the importance of teaching their students about serving others and supporting communities.”

Because Susie’s mom, Billie Jean Capps, is a longtime volunteer at Diboll Christian Outreach, Susie was well aware of the need for peanut butter and encouraged her students to help meet that need by collecting jars and traveling to Christian Outreach. They “served” by distributing and helping clients to their cars with their bags of groceries. This was their third year to come to Diboll Christian Outreach and they set a new record by collecting 364 jars of peanut butter. CHS student groups who served this year were: College Leadership, GEAR UP, AVID and NHS

During the Thanksgiving holiday, lots of folks enjoyed good food and visiting with family because someone spent time in the kitchen preparing a meal. Billie and Leonard Robison shared their home and a traditional meal with 16 guests that included: his sister, Erna Adams from Texarkana; son Leonard, Jr., Camille and her mother, Wanda Rickaway. Grandsons: Michael and his girlfriend and soon-to-be fiancée, Allison from Dallas; Jacob McGowan and family from Pearland; and great-grands, Liberty, Logan and Luke. Also longtime good missionary friends now retired and living in Ft. Worth, Johnny and Lahoma Loar. Joe Miranda also enjoyed the meal that included some of Chef Leonard’s smoked pork loin.

Mike and Renée Waters enjoyed the day in their home with their children and family that included Renee’s parents Titter and Harold Hogan from Newton and his sister Benny Ruth from San Antonio. Mike’s parents, Bill and Sylvia Waters from Lufkin. Their son Doug, soon-to-be UT graduate, came home from Austin. Doug is the senior student manager for the baseball team. When he graduates Doug will have three class rings: a regular class ring; one for athletics and one for the Big 12 Conference Baseball Champion. Also present was 2-1/2 year old granddaughter, Alli Christmas, who everyone enjoyed, brought her parents, Chelsea and Jarrod Christmas.

J.D. and Sue Johnson spent Thanksgiving with her sister and family, Mollie and Brax Haney. From J. D.’s memory, those present included Rocky and Tammy Haney and her mother, Louise; their son, Grant and his sister, Jordan and friend. Chuck Haney was also present. Sue contributed a corn casserole and J.D.’s favorite fruit salad to the traditional meal of turkey and dressing, chicken and dumplings, peas, sweet potatoes, desserts and more. As tradition has it, they watched football in the afternoon.

Enjoying a traditional meal in the home of Kent and Lisa Havard were her parents, Travis and Karon McLinn and Kent’s sister, Carla Waggoner, her two sons, Hunter and Jacob. Johnny McShands and his parents from Huntington. Kent’s Uncle John and Sissy Havard from Lufkin and their daughter, Amy; Robin and Brian McFarland and daughter Ryan from Georgetown. Kent and Lisa’s two daughters were also present: Cheslea who works for the City of Lufkin and Kirby and her friend, Caesar from College Station. Kirby moved to College Station when she was promoted to Office Manager at Ashley Furniture.

Gordon and Rita Craft enjoyed having their three sons and families at their home in Diboll. Brian and his wife Christine live in Dallas where he works in the corporate offices of CVS; their two sons are Jacob and Zachary. James and Lori Lee; James is the chaplain for Harbor Hospice and Lori Lee teaches in Hudson. Kevin and Mary; Kevin works for Consolidated and Mary also teaches in Hudson; their two sons are Collin and Nolan. On Friday several members of the Craft family gathered at Kevin’s home and enjoyed making homemade pork and venison sausage.

Of the folks I visited with at the round table, Marvin “Shorty” and Jeanene Hale had company that came further than anyone else. Their son and daughter-in-law, Craig and Kristi came from Nampa, Idaho with their two children; Mason, age 13 and Kali, age 10. Marvin and Jeanene picked up Craig’s family at the Houston airport on a Sunday morning in time to attend the Sawyer family reunion at 2PM at the Sheldon’s Barn on FM 2108 (Lois Sheldon and Jeanene are sisters). About 65 relatives enjoyed BBQ and all the trimmings. The next few days the grandchildren enjoyed roaming in the country side of the Hales’ home on Rayburn Lake. Living in the city, Jeanene said the kids get excited about seeing a lizard. One day was spent at the Kurth Zoo where they practically had “hands on” visit with the hippo and monkeys. At their insistent request, Marvin and Jeanene rode the train with everyone and due to engine issues, had to walk back to the depot. Craig had two things to do on his “bucket list” and that was to eat at Schlotzsky’s and Dean’s in Huntington. They also took time to visit his 90-year-old grandmother, Geraldine “Jerry” Spivey, who lives with her son and daughter-in-law, Randy and Tanya Spivey. On Saturday, it was all over except for the flight back to Idaho.

Check out the TLL Temple website or read in their column about the Kid’s Paint Party on December 11th, 6-8PM. Sounds very interesting!
Come see us…’round the table.