The Frankston Citizen — Year 2001 in Review

The year 2001 in Frankston was eventful with "new faces in familiar places" the theme for the first full year of the new century.

The community had a new face as First State Bank opened a new building, holding a Grand Opening June 20. A member of the Frankston community since 1909, the bright and shiny new bank will be headquarters for business for years to come.

Another familiar face to be promoted is Tom Spears. Spears, a 1985 Frankston graduate, was elevated to head football coach of the Indians. School officials were hoping the move would promote stability and standout leadership for the program for years to come.

The other facelift in the area was road construction. At times it seemed like Frankston had more road graders and front end loaders than cars. Highway 155 work was underway and construction on U.S. 175 from Baxter to Frankston was in the works. Highway 175 from Frankston to Jacksonville was also a hot topic with public meetings held and concerned persons voicing their opinions to the TxDOT, the Texas Department of Transportation.

The Highway 175 project will be long in scope. The work from Baxter to Frankston is slated to be completed by 2005 and the road from Frankston to Jacksonville tentatively set to be completed by 2008. So Frankston residents will have to endure the sound of road equipment and smell of asphalt for years to come, but with the longterm goal a wider, safer road for everyone.

The Frankston area was no different from the rest of the country as they were shaken by massive terrorist events Sept. 11 in New York City at the World Trade Center, the Pentagon in Washington, D.C., and when another airflight crashed in rural Pennsylvania.

Relatives of Frankston citizens were shocked and horrified by the events. Some former Frankston residents in the NYC area were near the explosions, but were reported by relatives as uninjured.


Residents in the Frankston area began 2001 dusting off snowflakes. A light coating of winter precipitation began falling in 2000 on New Year's Eve and when 2001 dawned bright, so did the snow as it coated bridges, roads and structures.

Frankston fans of the white snow had enough frozen matter to sled down the hill by the Frankston school. The dry snow was not much of a problem, but cold temperatures chilled the bones of residents with a low of 20 reported on Jan. 3.

The rain, then melting snow, was good for Lake Palestine with the lake level rising on Jan. 3.

The Lake Palestine Area Chamber of Commerce Banquet was held with leaders in the area receiving honors. Citizens of the Year were Jenny and Jerry Beard; Frankston ISD Teacher/Educator of the Year was Sally Benton with top teacher honors for LaPoynor going to Lori Griffith. Business Person of the Year was Tina Parker, owner and operator of Suzzette's Cabin Candles and Gift Shop with the Law Enforcement Officer of the Year going to John Floyd, Henderson County Precinct 4 Constable. Coffee City Fire Chief Billy Bull was the Volunteer Firefighter of the Year and Sue Tarrant, Volunteer of the Year.

Jim Paul of Frankston was installed as the 2001 President of the Lake Palestine Area Chamber of Commerce replacing outgoing president Bob Pickle.

Road construction continued to be a hot topic with the final inspections held on relocation for water and sewer lines necessary due to the expansion of Highway 155.

In Berryville, the City Council appointed Michael Elrod of Thousand Pines Estates as the new Place 4 Council member following the resignation of Danny Duggan from the post.

Berryville Mayor James Colvin also filled the vacancy on the Zoning Board by appointing Bob Standard of Holiday Hills.

Road construction got underway from SH 155 to FM 19 through Frankston. The 2.18 mile project was to cost over $5 million with Adams Bros. Inc of Athens the successful bidder for the project.

Frankston residents took time to observe former Texas Governor George W. Bush being installed at the new President of the United States during Jan. 20 ceremonies.

Both LaPoynor and Frankston Schools made the news in January. Carrie Douglas was named homecoming queen at LaPoynor during a Jan. 19 game against Carlisle. Ms. Douglas was escorted by her father, Jerry Douglas.

In Frankston, the contract of FISD Supt. Rick Larkin was extended and he was given a five per cent raise.


The City of Berryville got a newly organized volunteer fire department with Mayor James Colvin installing Rob Stevens as fire chief. Stevens was the former fire chief of the previous department.

Retired Frankston banker John D. Saunders died at the age of 81. Saunders, a native of Frankston, had worked in Frankston many years at First State Bank and was the former Chairman of the Board at East Texas National Bank in Palestine.

A kickoff meeting of mayors, county judges, county commissioners, some utility company representatives and other business leaders was held in Jacksonville concerning the widening and expansion of U.S. 175 between Frankston and Jacksonville. The project is a continuation of the U.S. Trunk System.

Work began on the dirt portion of SH 155 in Frankston.

In sports news, the Frankston eighth grade boys won their tournament, taking the District 20-AA crown.

The Maidens took second place in the district varsity race while the Indians also clinched a playoff berth.

The LaPoynor Flyers and Flyerettes won District 22-A titles and ventured into the playoffs.

The Maidens lost in the semi-finals of the Region III, Class AA tournament in Tyler. Frankston fell to Central Heights, 59-49. The Maidens, under coach George Cox, finished the year with a 29-5 mark.

The Robert Loper-coached Indians also saw their season come to an end. The Indians won at area, but fell 58-53 to No. 1 ranked West Rusk in the regional quarterfinals.

Kennard ended the year for the Flyers with LaPoynor defeated 71-47 in the Class A Sectionals at Nacogdoches. The season concluded with the team posting a 23-6 mark. The Flyers lost in the area round to Kennard, 68-48.

Jarrod Manoy, standout running back from Frankston, signed a letter of intent to play football for the Trinity Valley Community College Cardinals in Athens. Manoy, a 230-pound runner raced for more than 1,650 yards and 24 touchdowns for Frankston earning All-District, All East Texas and All State honors.


More than 500 persons were on hand as Frankston hosted the FISD Education Fair at the G.V. (Bo) Ousley Gymnasium. Booths were set up for several departments with the Life Skills booth winning the Grand Prize while the athletics booth won the district award. The high school English booth and middle school science booth were also honored.

Later in March, the Frankston ISD trustees approved an expenditure of $154,000 for a technology center addition.

In Little Dribbler play the Frankston Junior Boys won the championship of the Continental Division and the LaPoynor Senior Boys won their division title.

The Frankston Junior Girls All-Stars won the championship of the Continental Division at the Regional Tournament held in Frankston. Meanwhile the LaPoynor Junior Girls, Major Girls and Senior Girls won the runnerup spots in the tournament. All earned a trip to the National Tournament at Levelland in April.

The Frankston baseball team won their own tournament defeating Elkhart 8-4 for the title.

The Poynor City Council backed a resolution proposing a U.S. 175 loop near the city on the south side.

Census reports from Texas A&M University showed that Frankston's population in 2000 was 1,209 compared to 1,127 in 1990, a gain of 82 persons or seven per cent.


The weather was warm in the lake area with temperatures in the 80s and high humidity reported. A high of 84 was reported on April 3.

Tom Spears was named the new head football coach of the Frankston Indians during an April 9 meeting. Spears was already on the staff as an assistant football coach and head baseball coach. Spears' appointment came after the resignation of Lyle Wright.

Spears, a 1985 graduate of Frankston High School, is in his fifth year coaching at FHS. The baseball team has made the playoffs two times during his career and earned a district championship last year. Spears has been defensive coordinator for the Indians. Spears coached at Cayuga for five years before returning to his alma mater.


Courtney Freeney of Frankston earned a trip to Austin for the state track meet in the triple jump. Freeney qualified at the April 28 Region III Class AA Track meet in Palestine where she took second with a jump of 37 feet 3 1/4 inches.

Frankston athletes were challenged at the FMS banquet by Jennifer Cain Hyde, a 1994 graduate of Frankston High School. Mrs. Hyde told the youngsters to set high goals.

Most incumbents held onto their seats on area city councils and school boards during the May 5 election. In the Frankston ISD trustee election, incumbents Jerry Beard, Joe N. Reed II and Harry R. Smith returned to their posts. In the City of Frankston election Louise Walding won the seat vacated by Karen Faulkner.

In the City of Berryville, James Colvin was re-elected while incumbents Oris Gary and Grace Donnelly won. In LaPoynor ISD Place 2 trustee Jerry Douglas edged Tim Jones, 159-139 and in Place 3 Richard (Bubba) Holcomb won over Ed Young, 208-95 for the seat formerly held by Mike Hanks.

Top graduates were named at Frankston with Matthew Hicks the valedictorian and Leah Deusterhoft the salutatorian. At LaPoynor, Rachel Handley was the valedictorian while Elizabeth Walker was named the salutatorian.

The Frankston eighth grade class graduated with Haley Faulkner and Jennifer Bradford the top ranking students. The LaPoynor eighth grade class also held graduation. Courtney Shead and Casey Holcomb were recognized with top honors.

At the Frankston High School commencement, Brenda Faulkner was presented the prestigious W.E. (Hoke) Moore Award and Jarrod Manoy received the coveted Jeff Austin Award.


A public meeting was held concerning the widening of U.S. 175 between Baxter and Frankston. The 16.5 mile expansion will be made along routes that will affect many people in the area. Opinions were voiced during the meeting with TxDOT to decide in the near future a final route.

Heavy rainfall was reported in the area with no reports of flooding. A total of 4.66 inches of rainfall was received during the week. That included 3.4 inches prior to June 7 and another 1.18 inches over the next period.

The First State Bank official ribbon cutting was held June 20 at the new structure on the block at Main and SH 155. Remarks were made by Chairman of the Board Jeff Austin Jr., and Bank President and Chief Executive Officer Jeff Austin III. Frankston Mayor James Gouger officially cut the ribbon opening the bank. A large crowd was on hand to view the bank and tour the facility led by bank officers and employees.

The new building construction began in August 2000 and encompasses 13,000 square feet. The bank has new areas for customer convenience and expanded services, including four drive-in lanes.

The LaPoynor School trustees accepted the resignation of secondary school principal Don Mayfield with elementary school principal Eugene Buford to take the secondary school position. Applications were being sought for an elementary school principal. Longtime basketball coach Dwane Nichols transferred from that post to teach elementary P.E. Brad Rogers was hired to replace Nichols as head boys basketball coach. Rogers had served as an assistant under Nichols.

The community of Frankston honored Bert and Kaye Weeks during ceremonies June 28 at First State Bank. The Weeks owned the Exxon station for many years with the era beginning in Aug. 1, 1952 when Kaye's parents opened the station.


In July, the usually hot weather in the area gave way to heavy rainfall that filled drainage ditches and increased the level of Lake Palestine. The Upper Neches River Municipal Water Authority reported 5.45 inches over a weekend period and another 1.43 inches over a a 24-hour period in late June.

The Frankston Citizen celebrated its 91st birthday on July 8. The paper was established in 1910 and has been owned by current editor/owner Joe W. Tindel for the past 28 years.

C.R. Moore, a 10th grade student at Frankston High School, competed in the Texas High School State Rodeo Finals in Abilene. Moore was Reserve Champion for calf roping action and was to travel to the national finals at a later date.

Frankston School trustees on July 19 approved teachers and handbooks in a regular meeting. Frankston also set new student registration time.


While Frankston did not move, Anderson County did, in a manner of speaking. Anderson County appeared to remain in Texas Senate District 3, now represented by Todd Staples, but the county will be excluded from District 11, now served by Jacksonville pharmacist Chuck Hopson. According to the redistricting plan, District 3 would lose Panola County, but gain a few thousand people in Smith and Montgomery counties. Henderson County would also remain in Staples' district. Rep. Hopson was unhappy about losing Anderson County and the only county to remain in his district would be his home county of Cherokee. New counties would include Houston, Rusk and Panola. According to the plan, Anderson County would be in District 8, which would also include Freestone, Navarro and Limestone Counties.

New student registration was set for Aug. 13 in LaPoynor.

All the Frankston volleyball camps concluded with participants recognized and honored.

Frankston football players began practice on Aug. 6, the first workouts under new head coach Tom Spears.

Enrollment after the opening day of classes at Frankston on Aug. 13 totaled 757 students, down from 799 last year, officials reported. Initial enrollment this year in elementary school was 362, down from 365 at this time last year. At the middle school, enrollment after opening day was 161 compared to 188 last year. At the high school, enrollment was 234, a slight dip from 246 last year.

County and city road work continued. Equipment and workers from Anderson County Precinct 3, using materials supplied by the City of Frankston worked on resurfacing Perry Street near the Frankston ISD campus, officials reported. Construction workers on SH 155 were working in the area where Perry Street adjoins the highway preparing for future re-surfacing.

School tax rates and budgets were in the news. The LaPoynor School trustees on Aug. 20 approved a $3,938,284 budget for the 2001-2002 year, up about four per cent from the previous year. LaPoynor also honored retiring teachers Mrs. Margaret Dansby and Mrs. Dolores Hopson Herrington.

Frankston trustees on Aug. 28 voted to approve a balanced budget of $5,805,554 for the 2001-2002 fiscal year beginning Sept. 1. The board set the local property tax rate at $1.4987 per $100 valuation, which includes a maintenance and operation rate of $1.4198 and rate of $0.0789 to finance the interest and sinking fund used to retire bonded indebtedness incurred with the construction of the new high school.


The Frankston City Council approved a General Fund Budget of $388,547 and local property tax rate of 31.16 cents per $100 valuation.

A note burning celebration was held at the First Baptist Church in Frankston. The church was constructed in 1998 at a top cost of approximately $1.3 million. First Baptist Church has recently paid off their indebtedness, so the new facilities are completely paid for, Rev. Eddie Hilburn reported.

The recent dry spell was ended in fine order with heavy rains. A total of 7.24 inches of rain was reported in the area, including 1.89 on Thursday, Aug. 30 and 3.43 inches over the Labor Day weekend and 1.82 inches on Tuesday, Sept 4. The rainfall allowed the Anderson County commissioners to lift a long standing burn ban.

Fiddlers from the area came to Frankston for the Fiddler's Fest with Andy Tindall of Alvarado the championship winner during the Sept. 8 activities in the park.

In football, Frankston lost to Elkhart 35-0 in the grid debut for both teams.

Americans from all walks of life and residents in the Frankston area reacted to the horrific events of Sept. 11 as reports came that two commercial jet liners had hit and destroyed the World Trade Center in New York City and another plane crashed into the Pentagon in Washington, D.C.

Allison Oliver, an honor graduate of Frankston High School in 2000 and a sophomore at New York University, was safe, her parents reported. Her father said his daughter's dormitory was some eight blocks from the World Trade Center and near the Brooklyn Bridge.

County and state officials were reported to be in a "heightened state of security" and all military personnel were put on alert as a result of the attacks.

Susann Brown, who owns a weekend cabin at Lake Frankston with her husband and two sons, joined search and rescue efforts at the World Trade Center in New York City on Sept. 17. She is a member of the Texas Task Force urban search and rescue team which was activated for the NYC emergency through the Federal Emergency Management Association.

In school news, on Sept. 20 the Frankston ISD Board of Trustees approved the purchase of a distance learning system for the Frankston Technology Learning Center at a cost of $54,159.31 from Norstan to be financed through funds budgeted through a grant from the Texas Workforce Commission.


Anderson County Judge Carey McKinney said a letter from TxDOT, the Texas Dept. of Transportation, indicated that the project to widen SH 155 from Frankston to Pert "did not get funded" this time around. Acquisition of right-of-way for the project has been completed for several years.

Frankston held a candlelight pep rally on Oct. 11 for the homecoming game against Cross Roads. All persons in the armed services were also invited to attend.

Funds were raised by local groups to benefit victims of the Sept. 11 tragedy in New York City.

Frankston High School graduate, David Carter, helped with the cleanup in New York during a day at the site. Carter, who was traveling between schools in the New York state area presenting motivational multi-media assemblies to students, decided to drive to New York City, just four days after the Sept. 11 disaster.

The Frankston Square Fair was held with two Frankston youngsters chosen as Little Mr. and Miss Square Fair in celebration of the 2001 event, Kaylee Erickson, five-year-old daughter of Rick and Tonya Erickson and Grant Pedersen, five-year-old son of Mark and Vickie Pedersen.

Frankston defeated Cross Roads 29-7 before a large crowd at the Frankston Homecoming game. Seniors Chad Donnell and Tyronica Dewberry were crowned as 2001 Frankston HS Homecoming King and Queen. A large crowd was on hand for activities the following day, including a parade for the Square Fair.

The Frankston Maidens won the District 21-AA volleyball title and advanced to the playoffs. It was the fifth straight district title for the Maidens under Coach Lezlie Hedges.

In local business news, Johnny Burks and his daughter Susan and other family members were on hand to welcome guests and well wishers as Burks Hardware celebrated its 75th anniversary. The store is Frankston's oldest mercantile establishment and is located at Main Street and SH 155 in Frankston.


A tour was given of the International Paper SuperTree Nursery near Lake Palestine. The business ships more than 50 million trees per year.

Longtime teacher and civic leader, Mrs. Tommye Stringfield, 92, of Poynor died Oct. 25. She taught school a total of 44 years, 33 of those years in LaPoynor. She was the Poynor city secretary when the city was incorporated in 1973.

The Frankston United Methodist Family Life Center building was begun with construction on the 17,000 square foot structure underway. The building will feature a large open area for basketball, volleyball, concerts, movies, dances and community meetings and community Christmas and Thanksgiving activities. Also there will be room for the scouts, health fairs, book fairs, a full-service kitchen, mother's day out and other pre-school facilities.

The Frankston Maidens saw their season come to an end as the No. 1 ranked and defending state champion Leon Lady Cougars downed Frankston in the semi-finals of the Region III Class AA volleyball tournament in Brenham. It was the second straight year that Leon defeated the Maidens and knocked them out of the playoffs. The Maidens ended the year with a 33-3 mark.

The Frankston football team ended the year with a 29-7 win over Cayuga at Jeff and Opal Austin Stadium.


The Frankston Holiday Tour of Homes was held with the houses of Tony Herrington, the Austin Family, Billy and Pattye Bacon, Mary Phillips and Terry and Billie Bacon on the schedule.

Youngsters visited with Santa in the city park during Dec. 1 activities.

Frankston Maidens and Indians basketball teams both did well in tournament competition as did LaPoynor.

More than 100 persons attended a Dec. 5 meeting in Jacksonville on the proposed widening of U.S. 175 from Frankston to Jacksonville. The project is slated to be completed by 2008 at a cost of $35-$40 million according to TxDOT officials. When completed, the road will be a four-lane divided highway with a depressed grass median.

Heavy rains were reported in the area through Dec. 13 but temperatures remained above freezing.

The year that start with light snow had ended with rain the possible threat of more cold weather on the way.