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Artesia looks at youth suicide, bullying

Lisa Dunlap Photo An app that has gone viral encourages teens to complete 50 dares, with the last one being to commit suicide, Faith Baptist Church Paul Dunbar, pictured second from right, said at a Friday event in Artesia. Suicide is the second-leading cause of death among people ages 15 to 19. Dunbar was one of six panelists talking about youth bullying and its effects. Others are, from left, Jessica Caballero of the Changing Lives Coalition, Celia Fisher of Big Brothers Big Sisters of Southeastern New Mexico, Stacie Heacox of BBBS and Artesia Park Junior High teacher Ashley Mason. Not pictured are Natalie Perez of BBBS and Facilitator Laurie Schotz of the Artesia Arts Council.

Exactly what will happen now that some Artesia community leaders got together to talk about youth bullying remains uncertain, but panelists and participants said that the important thing was to start a conversation with each other and begin talking with kids.
The Artesia office of Big Brothers Big Sisters of Southeastern New Mexico and the Artesia Arts Council organized an anti-bullying workshop Friday at the Ocotillo Performing Art Center on Main Street for youth leaders to talk about bullying among kids, including online bullying.

Locals to be honored by ENMU-R

Submitted Photo Oil and gas industry executive Ray Willis is one of two honorees of the Eastern New Mexico University-Roswell Foundation.

Ray Willis and Roswell Livestock and Farm Supply will receive awards at an upcoming event of the Eastern New Mexico-Roswell Foundation.
Willis and Roswell Livestock and Farm Supply will receive service awards at the 16th Annual Foundation for the Future Banquet Tuesday, Sept. 26, 11:30 a.m. to 1 p.m., at the Roswell Convention and Civic Center, 912 N. Main St.
Willis is president of Hanson Operating Co. Inc. and McBride Oil and Gas Corp. He will receive the President’s Distinguished Service Award. Roswell Livestock and Farm Supply will be recognized with the Diamond Service Award for its ongoing support of the foundation.
For more information about the banquet, contact Craig Collins, 575-624-7304, craig.collins@roswell.enmu.edu, by Sept. 20.

Volunteers clean up along Relief Route

Submitted Photo Members of the Roswell Bike Club and Reflections and Recovery Ministries cleaned up a mile of the Roswell Relief Route Aug. 5. The 15 volunteers picked up 31 bags of trash, two boxes of shredded tree limbs and other items, according to organizer Perry Toles of the Roswell Bike Club. The two groups also work together on the annual Tour de Ocho Millas race at Bottomless Lakes State Park. The seventh annual bicycle race, sponsored by Xcel Energy, will occur Sept. 9. Proceeds benefit Reflections and Recovery, which helps people overcome addictions or other harmful behaviors. More information is available at facebook.com/tourdeochomillas.

Artesia leaders examining low bulk water rates

Jeff Tucker Photo A 32-mile, $58,250,000 road project on U.S. Route 82 beginning near the Navajo Refining Co. has Artesia leaders questioning their rates for bulk water sales.

A $58 million road project just east of Artesia has city leaders questioning their prices for bulk water sales.

Looking back: Writer’s block and the first day of school

Early class in Roswell. (Photo courtesy of the Historical Society for Southeast New Mexico)

Our greatest invertebrate threat — the mosquito


Hummm — swat — slap. Did you get her? Slapping at that tiny vampire (with this newspaper that you are now reading) is the most common reaction to a mosquito — if you are lucky enough to see it, or feel it as it sucks your blood — but it’s the least effective.

Proposed sale of historic building goes before public; Hearing to be held Sept. 14 to discuss handling of downtown structure

A public hearing about a bid to sell the city-owned Fisk Building is expected to be held Sept. 14. Some concerns have been raised about the only bid received for the downtown building. (Lisa Dunlap Photo)

The public will have a chance to weigh in on the proposed sale of the downtown Fisk Building.

Wally Holm takes aim at the moon

Growing up on the streets of Chicago gave Wally Holm a foundation of resilience that saw him through a number of changes in life. He and his wife Ellen are now retired in Roswell. (Submitted Photo)

Wally Holm’s life may not be a rags to riches story, but it is riveting. Holm grew up in a dangerous area of Chicago during the 1930s and ’40s. He had no intention of remaining there.

Economic contributions of women are at center of conference

Norma Campa and other women attending the Go Latinas! conference Saturday morning at the SOY Mariachi Building on South Grand Avenue take a fitness break between presentations. (Lisa Dunlap Photo)

Women now own 10.6 million of U.S. small businesses and more than 17,500 of small businesses in the state, people attending the Second Annual Go Latinas! Conference heard Saturday.

‘Look! I caught dinner!’

It's two down and more to angle for Saturday afternoon at the Spring River Park and Zoo lake on North Atkinson Avenue as Frankie Anaya, 10, of Roswell, shows the catches he made so far in the day. Anaya said he and his family probably would fix the catfish for an upcoming meal. (Lisa Dunlap Photo)

Week Ahead


City of Roswell Tourism Council, 1:30 p.m., Museum Archives Center, Historical Society for Southeast New Mexico, 208 N. Lea Ave.
Roswell City Council Outstanding Citizen Award Committee, 4 p.m., Roswell City Hall conference room, 425 N. Richardson Ave.
Sidney Gutierrez Middle School Governing Council, 6 p.m, Anderson Museum of Contemporary Art, 409 E. College Blvd.
Dexter Consolidated School District Board of Education, 7 p.m., Central Office Board Room, 100 N. Lincoln Ave.

Snyder speaks of goals during campaign fundraiser

Chaves County Sheriff Britt Snyder speaks about his goals and ambitions for a second four-year term as sheriff next to his wife, Jean Snyder, during his fundraiser at the Roswell Elks Lodge Friday evening. (Trevier Gonzalez Photo)
Chaves County Sheriff Britt Snyder speaks about his goals and ambitions for a second four-year term as sheriff next to his wife, Jean Snyder, during his fundraiser at the Roswell Elks Lodge Friday evening. (Trevier Gonzalez Photo)

Library asks for donated items


The Roswell Public Library requests donations until Oct. 13 for upcoming craft programs and other activities.

Roswell Destroyers hold open tryouts; 2016 NMAFL Champions join established league, seek players and sponsors

The Destroyers pose with backpacks full of school supplies that the team collected to give away to local kids after the first tryout of 2017 on July 29. The final scheduled tryout will be Saturday from 10 a.m. to noon at the Cielo Grande Recreation Area. (Submitted Photo)

Richard Michael Jones


Richard Michael Jones, 49, loving father, husband, brother, uncle and friend, passed away Tuesday, July 25, 2017.
Richard was born and raised in Roswell, NM and attended Goddard High School. As a young man, Richard proudly served his country in the Army for over four years before being discharged. He then transitioned into restaurant management, honing his skills first in the casino restaurants, then was a dedicated manager of Village Inn Rio Rancho and Macs Steak in the Rough for over 15 years.
Richard is survived by his son, Matthew Jones; wife, Misty Jones; parents Harold and Linda Jones, of Roswell; mother, Molly Bazan; brother, Harold Jones Jr. and wife Angie of Phoenix; his sister, Darla Henderson and Husband Chris; his brother, Robert Jones and girlfriend Kelly Darnell; nieces and nephews, Jackie, Joshua, Austin, Alexia, Kristen, Spencer and Kit. Richard also leaves behind many loving aunts, uncles, cousins, and friends. Richard was preceded in death by his daughter, Amelia Rose Jones, and mother Joyce Leonards. Also touching Richard’s life were Lenny and Linda Fresquez, who Richard didn’t just think of as employers, but friends.
A memorial and graveside services were held in Albuquerque, NM on July 31, 2017.
He passed away following a very brief illness and reunited with Christ and his precious daughter Amelia Rose way too soon. He was not prepared, no will and loose ends for his family to struggle with. Let us all learn from this and be prepared.

Peggy A. Frederick


Services are pending at LaGrone Funeral Chapel for Peggy A. Frederick, age 66, of Roswell, who passed away August 10, 2017.
A further announcement will be made once arrangements have been finalized.
Arrangements are under the personal care of LaGrone Funeral Chapel. Online condolences may be made at lagronefuneralchapels.com.


Thomas Christian Berckes


After a year and a half, Thomas Christian Berckes lost his battle with cancer, Thursday, August 10, 2017. A memorial service will be held at Westminster Presbyterian Church, 2801 W. Fourth Street, Roswell, NM on Saturday, August 19th at 1 p.m.
Arrangements are under the personal care of LaGrone Funeral Chapel. Online condolences may be made at lagronefuneralchapels.com.

John Gray


John Gray, 69, passed away on Saturday, August 11, 2017. His funeral service is pending, at this time. Further announcement will be published when arrangements are finalized. Services are under the direction of Anderson-Bethany Funeral Home and Crematory.

Donald James Ford


Donald James Ford passed away Aug. 9, 2017, at home surrounded by family and loved ones. Donald was born September 24, 1955 in El Paso, TX, to Russell B. Ford and Margie N. Ford. Don married his soulmate Ruth Harper on November 9, 1974 and they were sealed in the Temple of the Latter-Day Saints on April 29, 1980.
Don was a man who did it all, he started his career in public service as a mechanic for the Roswell Police Department in 1974. He transferred to the city animal control where he worked until he found his true calling in life. In 1981, Don joined the Roswell Fire Department where he became an EMT and eventually worked up the ranks to Lieutenant. Don was known as, “Big Daddy” around the Fire Department. He retired from Roswell Fire Department in 1997 but did not retire from the fire service. He rejoined the fire service by becoming a volunteer firefighter with the Sierra Fire Department in 1997. He became Chief of Sierra Fire Department in 2005. Under Chief Ford, Sierra added two new stations and grew to the largest volunteer fire department in Chaves County. Don also started working for the Roswell Independent School District as a teaching assistant where he worked for 20 years until his death. Donald started TLC pet cremation in 1997 and started a service the community desperately needed for all our pets. In 2000, Don started fighting wildland fires for the government from 2000 to 2016. Don travelled from Florida to Oregon and everywhere in between fighting fires. Every December, since 1992, Don would put on his Santa suit and go around making every child happy as Santa Claus. Don worked For Office of Medical Investigator for 10 years and owned and operated First Choice cleaning service for 12 years.
Don loved serving the people of his community. In June of 2014, he was honored with the Red Cross hero of the year for his fire service. He was an avid blood donor and donated gallons of blood over his lifetime. Don touched so many people’s lives and was a father-figure to so many. He had the amazing ability to make everyone feel like they were his best friend and most special person. He will be missed by everyone that knew him.
Don was preceded in death by his father, Russell B. Ford. Don is survived by his mother Margie N. Ford of Ft. Sumner, NM; his wife Ruth Ford of Roswell; his children Elaine Gadbury and her husband Michael of Roswell, son Matthew Ford and his wife Mandy of Roswell, Samuel Ford of Roswell, Aaron Ford and Kait Alley of Santa Fe, NM, Tyler Ford and his wife Brieanne of Roswell and Brittney Rubio and her husband Mike of Lubbock, TX; sisters Patricia Prenatt of Ely NV, and Marjory Rascon of Roswell; 9 grandchildren Audrey, Michael, Loretta, Rylan, Patricia, Charlene, Aydan, Ethan, Max and 1 on the way; great-grandson Apollo; and numerous nieces and nephews. It would be impossible to list all the people that loved Don and thought of him as a father, brother or mentor.

Rest now my fallen brother
Lay soft your suffering back.
Rest well and forever
Your memory shall not lack.

Rest your tired hands
Wipe clean your weary brow,
Rest with St. Florian
Your spirit now endowed.

Rest here your breaking heart
We know you gave your all,
Rest easy, you’ve done your part
You’ve answered your last call.

Rest knowing that in God we sought
Oh lord, watch over another who just fell
Rest assured your troubled thought
As we ring the final bell.

Visitation will be held at Ballard Funeral Home on Monday August 14 from 8am to 5pm and on Tuesday August 15 from 8am to 4pm. The funeral service will be on Tuesday August 15 at 6pm at the Church of Latter-Days Saints located at 2201 W. Country Club Road in Roswell, NM. Immediately following the service Mr. Ford will make his final ride through town on the fire engine to Ballard Funeral Home. For anyone that would like to join the family in celebrating his life we will meet at Sierra station #1, 603 S. Brown Road, Roswell, NM, for food and happy memories following the service.
Arrangements have been entrusted to Ballard Funeral Home and Crematory. An online registry can be accessed at ballardfuneralhome.com.

Christopher A. Cortez


Major Christopher A. Cortez, USA, Ret., 65, slipped away June 26, 2017, surrounded by his family in Roswell, New Mexico.
Born in 1951 at Ft. Bragg to an infantryman, 2nd Lt. Cortez broke with tradition and joined the field artillery to destroy, defeat or disrupt the enemies of the United States. His service took him from the plains of Oklahoma, the city crowned by the Acropolis, the DMZ on the peninsula of Korea, the forests of Washington and finally to Dow Hall at the New Mexico Military Institute.
After retiring, Major Cortez stayed on at NMMI. He taught military history, often in the garb of a Union Army private, coached drama with a penchant for the Bard of Avon, and, most importantly, spent 23 years mentoring the young men and women of the Corps of Cadets.
He is proceeded in death by his father Major Alvino Cortez. He is survived by his wife of 44 years Kathy Cortez, sons Christopher R. Cortez and spouse Jessica Atkins, Ryan Cortez, granddaughter Sofia Cortez, daughter-in-law Kathryn Quiett, mother Ann Cortez, sisters Elizabeth Robles and Lena Cortez, and brother Steve Cortez.
To keep watch on future generations of cadets, the Major will be inurned at the NMMI Columbarium.

Half way down the trail to hell,
In a shady meadow green,
Are the souls of many departed Redlegs
Camped near a good old-time canteen.
And this eternal resting place
Is known as Fiddler’s Green

Though other must go down the trail
To seek a warmer scene,
No Redleg ever goes to hell,
Ere he’s emptied his canteen.
And so returns to drink again,
With friends at Fiddler’s Green.

A Memorial Service will be held at Pearson Auditorium, NMMI at 13:00 (1:00 PM), Saturday August 19, 2017.
Arrangements are under the personal care of LaGrone Funeral Chapel. Online condolences may be made at lagronefuneralchapels.com.


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