By Pearl Cantrell
Monitor Staff Writer
GUN BARREL CITY–A candlelight prayer vigil is set for 7 p.m. Friday, Dec. 9, on the front steps of Mabank High School, as students, staff and friends mourn the loss of sophomore Jared Greene, who died Saturday night. Police have called it a “self-inflicted gunshot wound.”
On Sunday, Judy Arnold, 45, of Gun Barrel City, was arrested and charged with purchasing/furnishing alcohol to a minor and released the same day on a $2,000 bond. Greene was visiting Arnold’s son in her home when he died.
According to Seven Points PD, Arnold has served as a reserve officer since September and her last shift finished at 6 p.m. on Saturday. Chief Raymond Wennerstrom said she is on suspension. [Reserve officers must put in 24 hours a month to maintain their peace officer license, Wennerstrom explained. This is usually performed without compensation.]
At the time of the shooting, Arnold had been absent from the house for 20 minutes, Gun Barrel City Police Chief Damon Boswell said. He also stated that two minors had been drinking when the 16-year-old fatally shot himself.
According to sources close to the family, at some point, Jared called his mom, who told him to stay put, she would come pick him up. She suspected he had been drinking. However, upon her arrival at the Autumn Wood Trail residence, she was met by the sight of police cars.
The same close family source said that later, police said the boys might have been playing Russian Roulette.
Posted by : December 7, 2016| On :
By Pearl Cantrell
Posted by : November 22, 2016| On :
By Rollin Hadsell
Monitor Staff Writer
MESQUITE–Payton Costlow has continued her volleyball success after graduating from Mabank in 2016.
The former Lady Panther volleyball player continued her volleyball career at Eastfield College, a division three junior college in Mesquite.
Costlow and her teammates at Eastfield, ranked fourth in the country among D3 colleges, went undefeated this year in conference play (10-0). They also went undefeated in the conference tournament, earning Eastfield the title of Region 5 Champions. This championship earned Eastfield a spot in the National D3 Volleyball Tournament, held in Rochester, Minnesota.
At the national tournament, Eastfield finished third in the nation, bringing home a trophy for the first time in Eastfield College volleyball history.
Costlow was named to the Nationals All-Tournament team. Eastfield finished with a record of 26-5 this season.
Costlow received 2nd team all-conference this season and received all-tournament at the Carrington tournament played earlier this season. Costlow twice received MAC Player of the Week honors for her play.
Costlow, the Henderson County player of the year and honorable mention all-state selection, credits past coaches for her continued success. “I have been blessed with an amazing volleyball career starting from junior high to college,” Costlow said. “Coach Brown and Coach Shelton, head coaches for the Mabank volleyball program, are the main reason I have had these opportunities. I have always had a passion for volleyball, and these coaches allowed me to pursue that passion more and more with 100 percent support every step of the way.”
Costlow is the daughter of Julie and Paul Costlow, and her two brothers Zach and Cody also attended and graduated from Mabank.
She plans to attend Eastfield for one more volleyball season, then transfer to the University of North Texas to continue to pursue her education in social work.
When asked what it takes to be a great volleyball player, Costlow said setting goals is one important aspect, but not the only one. “It takes practice, passion and persistence. It really helps me to set personal and team goals at the beginning of the season and striving for those goals one day at a time,” Costlow said. “Being open to mistakes helps me grow as a player. I try to use all of the talent that God gave me in every practice and match.”
Costlow also credits her success in college to her present teammates. “Having great teammates that have my back and push me to do my best is a big part of the experience too. I’ve been fortunate enough to have had amazing teammates throughout high school, club, and my first year of college,” Costlow said. “The volleyball team for the 2016 season at Eastfield is a talented group of girls that loves the game and hates losing just as much as I do.”
Posted by : November 22, 2016| On :
By Pearl Cantrell
Monitor Staff Writer
WILLIAMSTOWN, KY.–The Ark Encounter, which opened July 7, is a life-size experience with over 50 exhibits throughout three decks connected with a central ramp for easy maneuvering. It’s an artfully-filled museum and demonstration of how Noah his wife, three sons and their wives might have lived, worked and survived for a year within its confines with the ancestors of every land, air-breathing bird and animal we know today.
My son, Jack, and I visited the exhibit while in Louisville, Ky. on business. The largest wooden-framed construction in the world is located just an hour and a half north of Louisville and just 40 miles south of Cincinnati, Ohio. We took in the controversial theme park on a Sunday and treated ourselves to some KFC for lunch at a nearby town. (Sorry I killed my phone soon after leaving the park, so don’t have the photos of the KFC. Happily, I also took some photos on my work camera.)
The sheer size of the ark is mind-blowing and awesome, as it appears on a bare hilltop. According to its architects, the ark can hold 10,000 people at a time, with more than 140,000 square feet inside. It would take nearly one and a half football fields to equal the Ark’s length. About a quarter of the cost to build the $100 million project was raised through donations. It is expected to draw as much as two million visitors in its first year. America’s Research Group reports four out of five Americans believe in the ancient Ark and would consider visiting a full-size replica.
There were no lines when we arrived. I had already purchased tickets online the day before to avoid lines at the ticket booth. But had there been a line, we would have been entertained with the watching of the lengthy documentary on the building of the park and the attention to detail, historical research and craftsmanship involved in its construction (wish there had been a line).
I was grateful to be presented with the processes Noah and his family might have employed in the feeding and care of so many animals. Exhibits detailed several technologies the first family could have employed and their presentation not as Neanderthals but as highly intelligent, thinking, art appreciating individuals who used their time in preparing the ark to solve several life survival issues, just as disaster preppers do today.
Though a little weak on entertainment value, the Ark Encounter delivers on the informational side and contains a running salvation theme throughout. The addition of a petting zoo and zipline adventure adds to the experience. Other entertainment aspects of the park are being developed.
The environment inside the ark is dimly lit and animal sounds and music you might expect from the era adds a certain mystique. Though there are no actual animals on board, lots of cages contain lifelike models of the kinds of animals, in pairs, that might have been on the ark, including seven kinds of dinosaurs. It also shows how these animals might have been fed and watered, waste removed, air circulated, light provided, using natural materials and arts and science of the day, which included ship building, pottery and metal working.
As a journalist, I was impressed with a video of an interview between an ancient journalist, her graphic designer and stenographer and Noah. The video theater presenting the short was similar to those I’ve visited at national parks. The female journalist conducted the interview with curiosity and disdain. At one point, the stenographer, taking down the entire conversation for posting on the city walls, became incensed at what Noah referred to as wickedness. The stenographer stood and passionately proclaimed it was his right under freedom to live by such practices. After the interview, the journalist attempted to “pull strings” with Noah to ensure a seat on the ark, should the impossible occur. Noah’s answer: He would take all who God sent him into the ark.
Theme-park developer Ken Ham contends that the ark would have been built at the height of society’s technological advances. He also introduces questions that an actual cataclysmic global flood explains in many of the earth’s visible features today, such as the many strata of rock formation found throughout the earth, such as that at the Grand Canyon. They could have developed in a very short period of time under the cataclysmic conditions of the flood, rather than the thousands, or millions of years, evolution purports to explain.
“The fountains of the great deep were broken up” strongly implies earthquakes on the ocean floor that would have released enormous amounts of subterranean water under high pressure and temperatures causing tsunamis and volcanic activity, occurring all over the earth, creating the continents. The violence would have buried billions of creatures in mud, creating the fossil layers we know today. These turbulent waters would have eroded and redeposited massive amounts of sand, silt, clay and rocks of all sizes. This would have been no tame event but a catastrophe of unimaginable destructive power. This was no localized flood with ever, gently rising waters. This was a global event covering the highest mountain peaks, and so pervasive that Noah and the animals with him were forced into confinement for an entire year! And all else outside the ark, except water-based creatures, would not have survived. It also explains a global ice age, occurring afterwards, as cloud cover and volcanic activity blocked much of the intensity of the sun’s rays for a time, cooling the earth.
The Ark Encounter is an extension of the 9-year-old Creation Museum some 45 minutes away. We knew we wouldn’t have time on this visit to take in the older attraction, but knew we could cover the ark in six hours. This part of the country is also beautiful and bears further exploration, hiking, camping, etc.
Though built to dimensions recorded in Genesis 6, the art replica is not sea-worthy. This is because of God’s promise, Ham explains, that He will never again send a flood to destroy all life on the earth. The rainbow is an everlasting sign of this promise to every living creature to dispel fear when a storm should arise.
The reason the founder of Answers in Genesis built the Ark replica is so visitors may have “an encounter with God’s Word and their by an encounter with the Lord Jesus Christ,” he said. “Other than the Cross, I believe the Ark is the greatest reminder of the salvation message. Just as those who entered into the Ark through that one door were saved from the judgment of the Flood. Later, God’s Son stepped into history to become the one door through which we must pass to be saved from the coming judgment.”
Jesus said. “I am the door. If anyone enters by Me, he will be saved. (John 10:9)”
“I am the way, the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me. (John 14:6)”
For those who believe, the Ark Encounter and its 100 distinct exhibits is strong verification of the truth of God’s Word, the Bible. It strengthens one’s faith and gives answers to refute scientific theories that explain the natural world, apart from a living Creator.
There is little evidence that nonbelievers have converted as a result of their visit to the attraction. But then again, Noah spent 120 years in the actual preparation and construction of the ark and converted no one, though he is referred to as a “preacher of righteousness.” Only he and his family were saved.
As one walks through the ark, the story of man and his broken relationship to the creator is brought to light, as well as certain similarities between then and now:
“… the wickedness of man was great in the earth, and that every intent of the thoughts of his heart was only evil continually. And it repented the Lord that he had made man on the earth, and it grieved him at his heart. And the Lord said, I will destroy man whom I have created from the face of the earth; both man, and beast, and the creeping thing, and the fowls of the air; for it repenteth me that I have made them. BUT Noah found grace in the eyes of the Lord.”