Posted by : Monitor Admin | On : May 6, 2016


Monitor Staff Writer
KAUFMAN–A jury of his peers found Charles E. Brownlow Jr. guilty of capital murder April 28, for the shooting death of Ali Market store clerk Luis Gerardo Leal-Carillo. He was 22 years old and a father of a young child.
Brownlow, 36, at the time of his alleged Oct. 28, 2013 killing spree, was found and arrested the next day. Among the dead was his mother, 61-year-old Mary Brownlow at her home, her body set on fire; his 55-year-old aunt, Belinda Young Walker, at her home; and acquaintances Keeleye Lynette Pratt Sluder and Jason Michael Wooden, at their home with their 3-year-old son.
Jurors could have found Brownlow not guilty, not guilty by reason of insanity or guilty of capital murder. The sentencing phase of the trial continued this week with tearful testimony.



Posted by : Monitor Admin | On : April 27, 2016

Rich Hirsch-extension agentCMYK

By Pearl Cantrell
Monitor Staff Writer
HENDERSON COUNTY–A beautiful spring day for Henderson County, Sunday was the day County Extension Agent Rick Hirsch died at his residence. All who heard of the longtime extension agent’s death expressed shock and grief. Hircsh, 51, is well-known in East Texas and elsewhere as he dispensed advice and information via a newspaper column, radio show and agricultural clinics, tours and seminars in his 28-year career.
A funeral service is to be held at 10 a.m. Thursday (today) at the First Baptist Church in Athens. located at 1055 S. Carroll Street.
Most recently, he organized a pasture tour, including a location on the shores of Cedar Creek Lake in late March. He served Henderson County from 1992 as its Extension Office Agent on behalf of AgriLife of Texas A & M University.
He is well-known for his support of youth agricultural projects (FFA & 4-H) and its students. The Athens FFA has opened a gofundme page to raise funds for his family. In its first seven hours, nearly $2,000 had been raised. The goal is to raise $25,000.
Terrie Echols writes: “So sorry for your loss. Rick was a great teacher, I learned a lot from taking his class. May God bless and comfort his family and friends.”
The Carroll-Lehr Funeral Home in Athens is overseeing the funeral arrangements. Members of the community are invited to share their stories, photos and remembrances of Rick to comfort the family on its website.
Rick Hirsch is survived by his wife, Bronte, a teacher in the Athens ISD, and three children.
Lorri and Harold Hawkins of Brownsboro state of Hirsch: “He was always there to help the community and especially the young people of Henderson County. Rick will be greatly missed.”
The Henderson County Master Gardeners extend their condolences, adding: “Rick was a respected and wise leader. We will miss his guidance and counsel.”
Chad Coburn, who judged many bovine exhibits with Rick writes: “I’ve had the privilege to judge cattle shows with Rick and serve with him on the Animal Industries Committee. I was shocked to hear the news.”
Gregg County Extension Agent Randy Reeves describes Hirsch as a great mentor. “We will all miss Rick. He was a great mentor to all of us and will be sorrowfully missed. Extension will never be the same with a great friend and co-worker called home.”
Co-worker Jo Petty Smith writes: “From the time I was a kid on the end of a show halter, to the time I was able to call him a co-worker, mentor and more importantly, a friend, I will cherish those memories and the laughs that he was surrounded by. I felt it a great honor to work with him and know him. Extension lost one of its finest agents.”
Among the many accolades and recognitions Hirsch garnered through his successful career, is the County Agent of the Year award bestowed by the Texas & Southwestern Cattlemen’s Association in 2012.
Athens ISD agricultural teacher Jeff Jones summed up best what many recognize on this sad occasion: “Mr. Rick Hirsch was a great friend and an outstanding person. Rick was an iconic figure in Henderson County, a truly good man and someone who helped thousands and thousands of people in our community and across the state of Texas.”



Posted by : Monitor Admin | On : April 22, 2016

By Pearl Cantrell
Monitor Staff Writer
GUN BARREL CITY–The Gun Barrel City Council announced the selection of the next city manager Tuesday night. Bret Bauer, the current city manager for Holton, Kan. has been named the Gun Barrel City Manager.
He will take up his new duties in approximately 60 days, the amount of time he is required to give notice of leaving his current post. Gun Barrel City Mayor Dennis Baade told The Monitor, the city went through an exhaustive nationwide search with the help of JD Gray & Associates, which identified 35 candidates. These were whittled down to 11 in the first round and then down to five in the second round. The council interviewed the five and selected two finalists, either of whom would have been a “fine selection,” Baade said.
He added that Holton has a population of 8,000 and that Bauer has been involved in city management for the past 10 years, with the last six as the chief administrator of Holton, where he has been overseeing a staff of 50 city employees.
“He has a proven track record in economic development, fiscal responsibility and managing high-quality projects,” Baade said in a written press release. “We are excited to have Mr. Bauer join and lead our city staff.”
“I am excited to have the opportunity to work with the City Council, staff and community,” Bauer said in a statement. “I am eager to move to Gun Barrel and to get to work on helping it continue to progress and grow.”
Prior to his current role, Bauer was assistant city administrator for Smithville, Mo. He earned a master’s degree in public administration and a bachelor’s degree in criminal justice from Wichita State University. The International City/County Management Association (ICMA) has recognized his professional expertise with a Credential Manager certification.
“We believe his energy, experience and commitment to the professional management of our city will be a great asset to o ur citizens, business owners and other stakeholders,” Baade stated.