Dear Editor:

It takes a great teacher to make a teacher!!

At the beginning of my high school career, I decided to take speech as an elective, and even remember mentioning to a friend at church if I liked it in 10th grade, I might stay in through high school. Wow! I didn’t know that was exactly what God had planned for me!

Mrs. Lera Harris, a veteran speech and drama teacher, moved back to her high cchool alma mater that year after having been moved to another school for awhile ... God’s perfect timing!! She was exactly who I needed to guide my future teaching career - a career I had no idea of at the time! She first cast me as the littlest Christmas tree in Charlie Brown’s Christmas! And she challenged me throughout that year with speeches to write and monologues to memorize! I blossomed! I loved performing! Not sure why, but I didn’t sign up for speech again my junior year! But ...

The biggest compliment of my life came in the first few days of that year ... she came looking for me! Mrs. Harris wanted me to compete for her in speech competitions! She believed in me, my talents and my energy! From that day forward she was my teacher, my coach, my mentor, my friend and my second mom! She worked me hard to hone my talents! I placed second at my very first tournament, and I knew then I was made for “the stage!”

And then ... she moved away! She wrote me over the summer to tell me she was moving to Lafayette. Mr. Harris had taken a job down there. I wanted to join them immediately but that didn’t work out! But ... God’s plan moved them there! I had already fallen in love with the USL campus in Lafayette, and declared my life goal to teach! Perfect!! Now I had a family who would finish my raising ... and keep me on my path! Over the next years during undergraduate and graduate school, they welcomed me in their home when dorms were closed, or I just needed them!! We became family!!

God left them in Lafayette until 1989, the summer after I graduated and moved to Dallas! What a perfect gift from God and played out by the Harris’s ... a family to take care of me!

We kept in touch over the years! My speech-teaching career spanned over 28 1/2 years, and I am still in the education business!

I owe it all to Mrs. Harris! She recognized my desire to “put on a show,” she taught me the art of teaching and loving kids! Scott and Mr. Harris joined in to help me survive my college years!

I am so thankful for Mrs. Harris! My teacher, my coach, my mentor, my friend, my second mom! My life would definitely not be the same without her!!! Today I miss her! But I celebrate all she did for me - The teacher who made this teacher!!


Cherie Henson

Dear editor:

Processing …

When Rick McLester handed me the Citizen of the Year award last week, he said it would take days for me to process what happened. He was right. I’m still processing what it means to be recognized at that level for my volunteer efforts.

I’m absolutely grateful for the Award, grateful to share it with my mom, family, and loved ones.  I am humbled, but feel the need to recognize others in this community who tirelessly give their time and resources. We are a very fortunate group that share the God given beauty and resources on our little piece of the Texas Coast.  Each of us reflects a certain color, some very vibrant and some soft pastel, and collectively we paint the masterpiece we live in.

I am deeply grateful for the recognition.  Thank you.

Jennifer Day

Dear editor:

I have been going to the General Land Office (GLO) office for the last couple of months and would like to commend their professionalism and customer service for their Homeowner Reimbursement Program.  They always have a friendly hand to encourage you to complete your application.

Rosa Gaddie has in particular been terrific help for anything I might have needed to complete my application.  She is a positive force for the GLO program.

I have been in several agencies/offices about Harvey relief, and no office has been more respectful than the GLO.

The state of Texas should be proud of this effort and I commend the program’s integrity and outreach.


Linda Valdez

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