Abilene Reporter News (Newspaper) - May 24, 1970, Abilene, Texas
®f)t Abilene Reporter —"WITHOUT OR WITH OFFENSE TO FRIENDS OR FOES WE SKETCH YOUR WORLD EXACTLY AS IT GOES"-Byron
89TH YEAR, NO. 340 PHONE 673-4271
ABILENE, TEXAS, 79604, SUNDAY MORNING, MAY 24, 1970 -EIGHTY-TWO PAGES IN SEVEN SECTIONS 10c DAILY—20c SUNDAY
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The above field is crusted with white crystals that have the look and tate of salt. ‘Damp spots have appeared in other fields, and one farmer who was digging a post hole hit salt water with his post hole digger. (Staff Photo)
B'wood Downpour Brings Flooding
Thunderstorms played hit and miss with the Big Country Saturday, and when they hit the results were eye-opening in some cases.
Brownwood appeared to have felt the brunt of Mother Nature’s attack as almost four inches of rain drenched the area in less than five hours Saturday afternoon, causing minor flash -flooding of the city’s low -lying areas and stalling scores of vehicles.
The Big Spring area was also a victim, but the city itself caught less than one - half inch. The northwestern part of
2 Abilenians Killed In 2 Accidents
Two Abilene residents were killed and four others were seriously injured in separate accidents Saturday afternoon near Stonewall and Coleman.
Victims were Mrs. L. A. Gustafson of 1126 Peach, 67, who died near Stonewall, and Mrs. Maryland C. Zellibor, 41, who was dead on arrival at Overall-Morris Hospital in Coleman.
L. A. Gustafson was listed in critical condition and in surgery Saturday night at Brackenridge Hospital in Austin with multiple injuries.
Receiving treatment and listed In serious condition at Hendrick Memorial Hospital in Abilene were David Liscomb Pullias. 58, and his wife, Elizabeth, 57. Aaron Earl King. 21, also of Abilene, remained in the Coleman hospital.
Highway Patrolman Jack Herington of Coleman said Pullias appeared to have a fractured pelvis and was token immediately to the Abilene hospital. Mrs. Pullias had internal injuries and was transferred shortly afterward from Coleman. King, said Derington, had a broken right leg and was in serious condition and suffering from shock.
Derington said Mrs. Zellibor was driving toward Coleman from Abilene and Pullias was driving the opposite direction when the accident occurred at a long curve in the rain-slick highway. King was a passenger in the Zellibor auto.
The accident occurred about 1:40 p.m., and Mrs. Zellibor was
Turn to WRECKS, Pg. 8-A
Howard County measured an estimated two inches, with some hail and high winds reported on a line from Luther to Fairview, a distance of about 8 miles.
The southwestern portion of Big Spring reported a smattering of hail. To the southeast part of the county, Coahoma had only a trace and Chalk had .57. Veal-moor had .60 and no hail or wind.
Rotan caught .60 in afternoon spurts, but up to 3.50 was reported five miles southwest of Rotan in two separate showers. Other parts of the county ranged from 1.50 to 3.50.
Roscoe reported .85, and Sweetwater had only a trace Saturday night. Roby itself had only .15 early Saturday, but a fraction over one inch was reported five miles west of town toward Snyder.
Other rainfall totals included Old Glory, .a5; Dublin, .05; De Leon, .22 on Saturday for a two day total of .30; Moran, .20; Comanche, .20 and still raining hard at 7 p.m.; Hawley, .05 on Friday and Sylvester, .28 in a light rain which lasted most of the day; Paint Rock, .60; and “good spring showers” at Haskell and Stamford.
The Brownwood Police Dept. aided by Brownwood Citizens Band Radio Emergency Unit blocked numerous intersections and rescued stranded motorists in high - water areas.
A spokesman for the unit said that at least two dozen vehicles
Turn to WEATHER, Pg. 5-A
U.S. DEPARTMENT OF COMMERCE ESSA WEATHER BUREAU (Weather M«p, Page SA)
ABILENE AND VICINITY (40-mil# radius) — Partly cloudy and warm Sunday through Monday with a chance of scattered thundershowers mainly in the afternoon and evening times High Sunday and Monday 87, low Sunday night 65. Winds southerly 12 to 15 miles per hour. Probability of rain Sunday, Sunday night and Monday is 40 per cent.
TEMPERATURES Sat. a.m. Sat. p.m.
85 1:00 78
65 2:00 .......
65 ............ 3:00
86 ............. 5:00
88 .......... 7:00 .......
67 ........... 8:00 ......
70 ...... 9:00 .......
74 ............ 10:00
75 ............ 11:00 .....
76 12:00 High and low for 24-hours
p.m.: 78 and 65.
High and low same data last year: 83 and 63.
Sunset last night: 8:35 p.m.; sunrise today: 6:35 a.rn ; sunset tonight; 8:36 p.m.
Barometer reading at 9 p.m.:28 09 Humidity at 9 p.m.: 74 per cent.
BIG SPRING ....
DE LEON .......
... .22 .30
OLD GLORY .....
Trent Farmers Claim Salt Pollution Rising
By KATHARYN DUFF Reporter-News Assistant Editor
A dozen or so farmers who own land three to four miles north and northwest of Trent think they have a serious pollution problem.
And they feel that government, for all the politicians’ talk about “clean up of the environment," is not helping them cure their troubles.
The land involved is in, and cast of, the White Flat oil field. It covers an area roughly three miles wide and five miles long in the region where Jones and Taylor and Fisher and Nolan Counties corner.
Salt problems cropped up about two years ago. Lately “something’s happened.” landowners feel, to worsen the
A STOCK TANK at the O. V.
Barnhill place was suddenly afloat with dead fish one
morning in early April. The Barnhills thought the fish had been poisoned. A game warden who came to check said, no, the tank water had turned briny. Chloride count in the water now is 2,665 parts per million — more than IO times the
maximum recommended for drinking water.
A water well on Pete Neill’s farm, one he used for many years to irrigate a garden, now is abandoned. Chloride count in it is 1.990 ppm.
Odell Freeman, whose father settled his clan at White Flat in 1902, recently drilled a new well for stock water. He is not using it. Chlorides, 596 ppm at the surface
Water from a faucet at the James E. Freeman home “curdles’’ when soap is added.
A field alongside the Trent-Sylvester Road, FM 1085, shows scraggly remains of what was a good crop last year. Now it is crusted with white crystals that have the look and taste of salt.
There ..are “damp” spots in other fields, spots which have not dried enough this spring to plow.
One farmer, Barnhill, was digging a post hole the other day. He hit salt water with the post hole digger.
THE LANDOWNERS believe their pollution is coming from the White Flat oil field, a major field since the early 1950s, a field which provides many of them royalty checks.
Abilene Events ...... 2-B
Astrology ............ 12-F
Austin Notebook....... 9-A
Bridge ............ 14-F
Business Outlook S-B
Classifieds ....... 6-1 ID
Crossroads Report ...... 2 6
Crossword ............ 6-F
Editorials ............. 4-B
Farm .............. IO-A
Jumble ............. 12-F
Letter to Servicemen . . 5-B
Markets ......... 12,13-A
Obituaries ...... 5-A, 11-D
Oil ............. 12-D
Records ............. 12-C
Sports ............. 1-5-D
Texos! ............... i.g
To Your Good Health . . 10-F
TV Toh (Pullout of Sect. B) Women's News . 1-11-C
And they feel that the Texas Railroad Commission, the state agency with jurisdiction over pollution troubles from oil field operation, has given too little attention to their problems.
“Nobody seems to pay us much mind,” said J. M. Freeman, brother of Odell. “I
know' the oil is important — I’ve been getting royalty checks since 1953. But we have to protect our land and water.” “The Railroad Commission just doesn't seem to have time for us,” Mrs. Barnhill said. “They just seem interested in the oil companies.”
“We’ve called them (RRC representatives) out time after time and they do or tell us nothing,” said Mrs. Odell
Freeman. “Foot by foot we are losing our farm land. What can we do? Where can we start in
Turn to FARMERS, Pg. 8-A
8 Water Samples Analyzed From Wells at White Flat
The White Flat community has a supply of ground water, at from IO to 90 feet, that is ample in quantity but poor in quality.
“Gyppy,” they call it. The
average household uses the water to mn bathrooms and kitchens but for human consumption White Flatters depend on rain water or water they bring
Deadly Wells Found In Chemist's Tests
Laboratory tests run by Jim Hale, chemist at the Abilene Grimes Water Plant, to supply data for a Reporter-News study of salt pollution, may have been life - savers — literally — for the James E. Freeman family of the White Flat Community.
The tests showed that well water the Freemans were using for household purposes was loaded with a lethal amount of nitrates.
The Freemans knew the wells in their back yard had “turned sally” — they did not use the water for drinking — but they did not suspect the deadly charge of nitrates.
Samples of water from various wells and stock tanks in the area of suspected salt pollution were collected by Reporter-News Assistant Editor Katharyn Duff and taken lo the Abilene water labs Wednesday for analysis.
Primary objective was to find the chloride, sulfate and hardness counts. Hale was asked to run these first, then did a more complete analysis.
At mid - afternoon Thursday Hale and Water Superintendent Bill Weems called the newspaper.
“Can you locate the people who have wells from which you took Samples 6 and 7?” the water officials asked. “They got serious trouble.”
“A lot of salt?” the water men were asked.
“Salt, yes, but what’s more important, enough nitrates to kill them,” Weems said.
Nitrate count in the wells was
... a life-saver
142 and 150 parts per million. Limit for human tolerance is 45 ppm.
The Freeman family was located by phone and warned of the unsuspected menace. Early Friday, chemist Hale went to the farm to get more samples, to check himself, and to see if he could locate the source of trouble.
Hale found his work accurate — enough nitrates to kill cattle or people.
And he traced the nitrates to their source, an old hog pen, one where as many as 300 hogs had been housed at a time.
The contaminated wells, Hale was assured, will be retired from service.
Eight samples of water wero taken by The Reporter-News from various sources on Tuesday, May 19, and transported to the Abilene water lab at the Grimes Filtration plant for analysis.
The first sample, No. I, was from the wpII which supplies the O. V. Barnhill home. It is a well which can he considered “normal” for the region — no salt pollution is suspected. The count on it: alkalinity, 415 ppm; hardness, 572 ppm; chlorides, 248 ppm; sulfates, 202 ppm; nitrates, 1.5 ppm.
This well, which is used to water cattle as well as for home use, is on the bank of a stock tank which had a fish kill in early April.
Sample No. 2, from the Barnhill tank, where the fish died, had this count; alkalinity, 66; hardness 2.800; chlorides, 2.665; sulfate, 1,010; nitrate, .5.
Sample No. 3 was from a newly drilled well on the Odell Freeman farm some two miles to the west of the Barnhill tank. The alkalinity count: 93;
hardness, 2.266; chloride 596; sulfate, 1,050; nitrate, 1.3. After the well was drilled for stock water Freeman was afraid to use it.
Sample No. 4 was from a well on the Pete Neill place. It is an old seismograph hole re-worked into a water well IO to 12 years ago. It long supplied water for a garden. Now it has been abandoned and the windmill removed to a new-er, usable well. The count: alkalinity,
1,071; hardness, 2,100; chlorides, 1,990; sulfate, 1,050; nitrates, 1.0.
Sample No. 5 was from the old core hole (No. 2, for RRC record) which runs as a spring on tho edge of the Odell Freeman farm. Count: alkalinity, IOO; hardness, 1,968; chlorides, 2,235; sulfate, 1,050; nitrate, .5.
Sample No. 6 was from an old well, drilled in 1913 to about 90 feet, which is in the yard of the
Turn to WATER, Pg. 8-A
Drug Problem Thought Worse Among Students on Southside
Abilene’s drug problem among students is much larger on the Southside than in the north, schoolmen quote law enforcement officials as saying.
They think it’s simply because the southsiders have more money to spend on drugs
Supt. A. K. Wells said Saturday that he had been told by Abilene police that they were contacting about IO Cooper High students for every one from Abilene High.
He referred many questions on the drug problem in the schools
S. Viets Hit Rubber Plantation
SAIGON (AP) — About 10,00ft South Vietnamese troops and hundreds of tanks and armored vehicles launched an attack into Indochina’s biggest rubber plantation in Cambodia Saturday in an effort to destroy an enemy regiment.
One task force rumbled north up Highway 15 toward the Chup plantation in eastern Cambodia while a second force pushed in from the east along Highway 7.
A dozen Khmer Rouge—Cambodian Communist guerrillas — were reported killed on the plantation’s southern edge and 15 were reported captured. Another 25 enemy were slain east of the 70-square-mile plantation.
South Vietnamese fighter-bombers, flying in support, knocked out eight antiaircraft guns, officers said.
Field reports said two South
Vietnamese soldiers were killed and ll wounded.
The plantation lies east of Kompong Cham, Cambodia’s third largest city, 35 miles from the South Vietnamese border and 50 miles northeast of Phnom Penh, the Cambodian capital.
Associated Press correspondent David Rosenzweig reported from the front that the target of the drive was the 272nd Viet Cong regiment, 80 per cent of whose soldiers are North Vietnamese according to allied intelligence.
Rosenzweig said a North Vietnamese soldier captured Friday told interrogators that the regiment had 2,000 men positioned in the plantation.
“This is a hunting game between my forces and the Communists,” said LL Gen. Do Cao Tri, commander of the South
Vietnamese troops. “If the Communists stand and fight we will destroy them.”
The drive took one task force from Kret northwestward along Highway 7 to within 12 miles of
GUIDE TO TV IN SECTION B
Big Country TV Report Is the largest and best guide to TV viewing in the Big Country. You will find it today as a pull out in Section B.
Its 12 pages are crammed with today’s and this week’* TV logs and movie schedules, and notes on popular programs.
A feature today is a story and picture on Junior Samples, star of “Hee Haw.”
In Section B — pull out and save for a week ! pleasure.
Kompong Cham. U.S. Advisers were reported to have withdrawn when the column passed the 21.7-mile limit set by President Nixon for U S. forces in Cambodia.
The South Vietnamese troops hoped to link up with Vietnamese civilian irregulars to open Highway 7 east of Kompong Cham. Cambodian troops, supported by South V ietnamese warplanes, regained control of the Kompong Cham last Sunday. However, strong enemy forces were reported still in the area.
Tri flew into Kompong Cham last Monday to promise more combat support for the Cambodians lf they took the offensive against the North Vietnamese and Viet Cong.
Tri was said to be disappointed, however, that the Cambo
dians had not moved out to engage the enemy as he had wished.
Farther north in Cambodia, a Snuih Vietnamese force reported its first sharp fighting in an operation launched three days ago west of the Due Lap Special Forces camp in Vietnam’s southern central highlands. Reports said 20 North Vietnamese and seven government troops were killed in the clash, about six miles inside Cambodia.
U.S. forces operating across the frontier south of this operation reported another day of light action and the capture of more enemy nee caches. One cache contained 30 tons.
The start of monsoon rains over the Ho Chi Minh trail from North Vietnam through eastern Laos were said to be further complicating the enemy’s supply problems.
to W. D. (Shorty) Lawson, director of health, physical education, and safety.
I>awson said Saturday afternoon that school officials feel the problem is on the increase here.
He estimated that somewhere between five and IO per cent of local high school students have experimented wnth drugs at least once. “It could be more than that, theres just no way of knowing.” hp said.
Lawson also confirmed hearing from lawmen that the problem is much larger on the Southside. He said the big reason is that the more affluent Southside students have “money to buy them ”
He said the ratio had not only been reported by police but also by former pushers. “They tell us the same thing,” he said. “The problem in the schools Wells sde’s higher use) is money.”
Lawson estimated a maximum of five per cent of junior high students had experimented with drugs here.
He said he hadn’t asked the police whether the ratio would he larger on the south. He said he “would assume It would hold true” but “might not be a fair statement.”
Lawson said “It’s probably a
Turn to DRUGS, Pg. 8-A