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New Braunfels Herald-Zeitung (Newspaper) - October 19, 1999, New Braunfels, Texas NEW PELS mii fx HERALDZEITUNG Vol 148 No 238 14 pages in 2 sections October 19 1999 TTA Q A XT Servin8 Comal County since 1852 50 cents A couple joins the crowd in singing one of the many songs performed Sunday night at the flood remembrance and commemoration service CHRISTINA Flood survivors share memories pain BY PERI STONEPALMQUIST Staff writer Despite the eerie overcast skies reminis cent of weather a year ago about 100 peo ple found their way to St Paul Lutheran Church on Sunday to remember the flood of October 1998 and celebrate survival The Remembrance and Celebration cere mony was scheduled for Sunday at Landa Park but organizers with New Braunfels Rebounds and South Texas Flood More on flood service Page 5A Other communities remember Page 4A Recovery Project decided the weather was too threatening At 2 organizers started setting up in St Pauls Fellowship Hall on Santa Clara Street and posted signs at Landa Park explaining the change of plans I think weather kept people said Sue Puetz with Rebounds They might not have heard about the change of Other people might not have been ready quite yet to celebrate or remember this past Octobers devastating flood orga nizers said But others were ready Im trying to get some New Braunfels resident Patti Fowler said But maybe its not as hard for See Wreck kills Marion woman Wet weather blamed for string of accidents on Interstate 35 Left After several car accidents on Interstate 35 in the Farmto Market Road 306 area traffic in the southbound lanes of 135 was bumper to bumper Bottom Police officers investigate the accident that claimed the life of Marion resident Andrea Vital WAI Zeitung BY HEATHER TODD Staff Writer Slick roads and careless drivers were to blame for a series of accidents that claimed the life of a Mari on woman and stalled traffic on Interstate 35 for more than an hour Monday afternoon Andrea Vital 40 was pronounced dead by Pet 1 Justice of the Peace Diana Campos about 4 at the scene of an accident in the 1400 block of Interstate 35 Vital was driving a 1994 Mazda pickup hi the southbound lane of 135 when the pickup collided with the rear of a 1996 Chevy fourdoor one ton pickup A passenger in the Mazda Barbara Martinez of Marion was transported to McKenna Memorial Hospital with minor injuries Lt John Wommack with the New Braunfels Police Department said Julian Montalvo 47 of Uvalde was driving the oneton pickup in the rainslick northbound lane of 135 about when he braked for traffic and lost control Wommack said Montalvo spun into the median of I35 and slid backward into the southbound lane After being struck from behind by the Mazda pick up the Chevy pickup came to rest on an embankment beside the southbound lanes of 135 Vitals vehicle spun and stopped in the median of the interstate Wommack said three passengers in the Chevy were not injured There have not been any charges filed as yet but were still looking into he said Wommack said traffic congestion after the accident and wet roads contributed to several more accidents on southbound 135 Officials with the Department of Public Safety in New Braunfels said they worked about five acci dents along the interstate Officials blamed slick roads and drivers traveling too fast for the weather conditions Police officials said they worked about seven acci dents in town by late Monday afternoon Traffic on the southbound lanes of 135 was rerout ed just south of FarmtoMarket 306 to allow emer gency officials to clear the accident scene Traffic which was backed up to Rip Griffin Trav el Center at 4817 North IH 35 was allowed back on the interstate about an hour and a half later The wet conditions that have been in the area since Sunday came exactly one year after a devastating flood destroyed homes and businesses in Comal County But forecasters said the rain was not expect ed to stay in the area today As of early Monday evening New Braunfels got a little more than half an inch of rain since Sunday Forecasters said to expect mostly cloudy skies today with decreasing clouds in the afternoon Highs are expected in the upper 60s and with partly cloudy skies tonight and lows in the mid 40s Wednesdays forecast calls for mostly sunny skies with highs in the low 70s Crime rate down in Comal nation FROM STAFF AND WIRE REPORTS Murder and robbery rates dropped to the lowest levels in three decades in 1998 as serious reported crimes declined for the seventh straight year but officials and experts warn against complacency The overall violent crime rate 566 murders rapes robberies and assaults per dropped to its lowest level since 556 in 1985 just before an epidemic of crack cocaine emerged to send it soaring Robbery assault and burglary rates in Comal County including New Braunfels dropped in 1998 following a national trend of decreased serious reported crimes The robbery rate in Comal County decreased with 54 offenses in 1997 and only 41 reported rob beries in 1998 The number of assaults dropped from 107 to 99 while the number of burglaries also dropped with 592 in 1997 and 482 in 1998 Local law enforcement officers credited the low er crime rate to heightened law enforcement pres ence With Comal County growing so fast it is unusu al to have a decrease in the crime said Capt David Ott of the Comal County Sheriffs Depart ment The extra number of officers we have out there must be making the Unlike the national statistics the number of sexual assaults murders and motor vehicle thefts in Comal County increased from 1997 according to the state crime report The number of reported sexual assaults increased from 26 in 1997 to 38 in 1998 However Ott said the increase in the number of sexual assaults might not be as drastic as the numbers reflect The more knowledgeable officers are about sex ual assaults in the county the more sexual assaults they will find out Ott said Motor vehicle thefts increased from 95 in 1997 to 121 in 1998 while the number of murders increased from none in 1997 to one reported mur der in 1998 President Clinton and others warned against com placency This is good news for Americas families and it shows we can indeed turn the tide on Clin ton said in a statement But he added even as crime falls we must not let down our guard That is why we must redouble our efforts to build on what WORD to hear water planning presentation FROM STAFF REPORTS Miller repre senting the South Central Texas Regional Water Planning Group will address the Comal County Water Oriented Recreation District when it meets at Wednesday The meeting will take place at the Canyon Lake Action Center 1951 FarmtoMarket Road 2673 in Sat tler WORD manager Jim Inman said Miller was expected to speak about water planning and the proposals for Comal County The water planning group was formed through Senate Bill 1 which established 16 groups to prepare water plans to address needs in their respective regions Water plans must be submitted to the Texas Water Development Board by Sept 1 2000 INSIDE Key code 76 Parents can do homework before teacher conferences BY HEATHER TODD Staff Writer The only time many parents ever sit down facetoface with their childrens teachers is to discuss unpleasant matters poor grades or disruptive behavior in the classroom But local educators say a childs success in school can be significantly increased if What to ask the teacher Page 3A parents communicate more with teachers and take a more active role in the learning process Both Comal and New Braunfels school districts are scheduling parentteacher con ferences at the primary and elementary levels and parents are encouraged to participate Many CISD parents already have scheduled appointments with teachers today through Thursday All students in CISD schools will be released early at through Thursday to facilitate parent See
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