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New Braunfels Herald-Zeitung (Newspaper) - January 8, 2004, New Braunfels, Texas SPORTS PLAYTIME 2004 Soccer season kicks off this weekend with area teams in tournament play Page 3A Doubleamputee tells NBHS students how to triumph over tragedy By Dylan Jim6nez Staff Writer The things Dana Bowman can do are more important to him than the things he cant Prosthetic feet first Bowman para chuted through almost freezing temper atures Wednesday morning onto a New Braunfels High School field When it comes to skydiving and aerial acrobatics Bowman remains one of the best in the world even after his legs were torn off in an accident in 1994 The retired Army sergeant first class spoke to NBHS students about fight ing lifes battles He wanted to show them what disability is really Boy was it cold up Bowman said trying to ease the crowd He was wearing a pair of khaki shorts accentuating his artificial legs Many of the students and teachers eyes bounced fronrthe fakelegsup toWelnahandhiS projector screen He showed clips of his new Nike com mercial yet to be released Its not disability its Bowman told students several times Bowman was a celebrated Special Forces soldier and a member of the Gold en Knights elite parachuting team In February 1994 he and a teammate were performing a trick called the Dia mond Track The Diamond Track involves two skydivers who streak a mile away from each other turn 180 degrees and fly back at each other crisscrossing in the sky The men had demonstrated the maneuver more than 50 times safely Bowman said But they collided as they flew at each other at a combined speed of 300 miles per hour Bowmans teammate died instantly Bowmans legs were torn from his body on impact and his chute opened He lost one leg above the knee and one below the knee Bowman thought his life as a special forces soldier was over Instead after his teammate was buried Bowman began to train again His physical conditioning before the accident allowed him to return to sky diving just nine months later when he reenlisted as the first doubleamputee to be an active member of Army His reenlistment set a precedent for other disabled people to be able to enlist in the Army The words amputee and inability are not Bowman said KIDS BAT FREE Children 12 and younger get a free buffet with an adult buffet purchase at regular price at Mr Gattis Pafle 2A 12 pages 2 seetions CLICK WWW FRONT and CENTER Photos by DAVID Retired Army First Class Dana Bowman gives the students and faculty of New Braunfels High Senool the thumbs up after he parachuted onto school grounds Wednesday morning See AMPUTII Page 3A Bowman lost his legs after he and a teammate collided performing a parachuting stunt in 1994 County changes precincts as judges OK By Ron Maloney Staff Writer Local officials expressed no sur prise Wednesday mat a threejudge panel approved Texas new congressional districts Department of Justice and the federal courts both approved the controversial new districting which divides downtown New between Smith RSan Amonio and Giro Rodriguez DSaii Antonio The new districts will first be applied in die March 9 primary elecdoa Democrats are expected to appeal to the Supreme Court arguing that the Unes disenfran chise minority voters County Clerk Joy Streater said Elections Coordinator Unnell Hinojosa had already begun preparing the new local voting to make the redisolcting work Under federal no voting precinct can be split between two congfessmen The maps drawn up mis past n g mjfjnirfit confer ence committee requifed Comal County to create Hinojosa tweaked the lines so she was required to draw four new to ing for local officials because they come just three years alter Comal County was consolidated into one congressional district Smiths county spent thou sands realigning and renumber ing its precincts Wednesday Streater said the county would move on and make the new system wort Were going to play the hand thats been dealt Streater said Thats die main reason we went ahead ajid got approved by cornmissioners Were ahead of f seeking pre clearance of the local lines in accor dance with the Voting Rights Act County Judge Danny Scheel said he regretted the changes after the county worked so hard in 2001 to put its districts in order Were obviously disappointed that they chose to change the lines that we worked so hard to create to reduce confusion to Scheel said The upside is we now have more than one congressman we can go to when we need some Scheel said the county would revisit its districts after the next census and see if they couldnt be realigned as diey were in 2001 i DEAR ASSY 38 Mostly cloudy High Low 62 42 I COMICS 2B 1 FORUM 4A SPORTS u Landa Street decision delayed By Scott Mahon Staff Writer Developers and landowners who want to save pecan trees along Landa Street adjacent to the LCRA power plant prop erty were given another months reprieve Tuesday The New Braunfels Planning Com mission voted to give developer Larry Peel of Austin another chance to resolve the issue with the Texas Department of Transportation before it approves the final plat City officials know TxDOT plans to widen Landa Street to four say 20 years from now TxDOT recom mends a 120foot rightofway however the 50foot wide street is lined with 100 yearold pecan trees which would have to be removed to get that wide of a right ofway Peel who plans to develop the prop erty has fought againstTxDOTs recom mendation for months For the second time he swayed the commission Tuesday to give him one more chance to save the trees The issue is how much rightofway we should said Frank Robbins See LANDA STREET Page 3A Dierksen steps down as planning chairman By Scott Mahon Staff Writer John Dierksens leadership was notice ably absent at Tuesdays Planning Com mission meeting following his resignation as chairman Dierksen has served on the commis sion since 1978 Frank Robbins director of planning and community development said Dierksen submitted his formal resigna tion Dec His resignation letter said essentially he would no longer have time to serve on the commission because he will be serv ing as chairman of the chamber of com Robbins said Dierksen has served as acting chair man of the board of the Greater New See DIIRKSIN Page 3A COMING SUNDAY UPTOWN PIANO BAR
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