New Braunfels Herald Zeitung (Newspaper) - August 22, 1985, New Braunfels, Texas
Mom hopes others take son's death as message
ABILENE (AP) — His friends laughed when 15*year-old Joe Arrazola tried to warn them about the dangers of drugs, but at least one has stopped since Arrazola died from sniffing gasoline, his mother says.
Arrazola’s mother said her son’s drug use was a habit he didn’t want, but it was one that killed him last month — he was found dead in the driveway of his parents’ home.
An autopsy report attributed the death to sniffing gasoline one time too many. And although the his friends laughed when he warned them about drugs, at least one has stopped taking drugs since his death. Mrs. Arrazola said.
And she hopes others will follow that youth’s expainple.
•I think Joe s death is a message.” she said at a news conference Tuesday He would have wanted that."
Joe was found dead shortly afterNew machine pulverizes kidney stones
midnight on July 23.
"By the time he found out, he was in too deep,” Mrs. Arrazola said of her son’s drug habit.
"He knew where he was at, he knew he was in trouble," said Taylor County Justice of the Peace Samuel Matta, who ordered an autopsy on Arrazola after pronouncing him dead. "His desire was to quit.”
Abilene Police Youth Officer l ee Reed said inhaling gasoline seals air sacks in the lungs, suffocating a person. TTiat is apparently what happened to Arrazola. Matta said.
He had been sniffing gasoline for about a year when finally, Matta said, "he tried it one too many times, and it cost him his life."
Tuesday’s news conference was put together by Matta, to allow Mrs. Arrazola to tell Abilene parents that her son wasn’t the only chemically dependent child in the city, and that something needs to be done.
"We are going through here in Abilene, like we’re going through it in most of the state and most of our nation, the greatest health epidemic that the United States faces today. Kids are seeking some way to get high, to get away from certain things," Matta said.
Mrs. Arrazola said she found her son was on drugs when some of his friends were arrested. She said she asked him if he took drugs, and he replied, Yes, ma’am.'
"He said. It’s tough out there,’ ” she said. "He said, ‘You have to do it, you have to belong.’ ’’
He wrote of his drug problems in letters, from which excerpts were read at the news conference.
"I wish my friends would understand that pot ain’t no good,” he wrote. "I can feel myself changing. I’m hurt inside, but I can’t put it into clear words."
Mrs. Arrazola said she called the police about her son s problem. She said the police told her he had to-be caught doing something wrong before they could do any thing.
The boy loved soccer and football and was looking forward to playing football this fall at Abilene High School, his mother said At one time. he considered becoming a Catholic priest when he grew up But his sisters said his mood changed about a year ago and that he began displaying a bad temper.
"He started picking on us," Anna Arrazola said. "He was a walking bomb."
Exit exams may test reform success
AUSTIN (AP) — High school juniors could give Texans a quick glimpse of how the education reform system is working, Education Commissioner William Kirby says.
The new "exit-level’’ exam required for high school graduates will be administered for the first time in October, and Kirby predicts that about 25 percent of them will faily.
But those juniors will be re-tested in May, when Kirby said he expects a "significant number" of the failing students will pass.
"Reform doesn’t occur right away — it takes time. I’m going to give you something that is going to occur right away; that will give you an indication of whether ifs working or not,” Kirby said of the exit-level exams.
In his speech Wednesday to a Texas Daily Newspaper Association seminar for education reporters, Kirby said, “We already know probably 25 percent of the children will fail that test" in October.
The failure rate will be "much higher” among minority students, he said.
But “I’m going to predict for you today, and it will be soon enough for you to call me to task over it, that a significant number of the kids who fail the test in October will pass it in May,” he said.
He based his prediction on the additional tools now available for schools to use to help struggling students.
"One of the reasons they are going to pass it is because it will put people on notice in October, and we are going to say to school districts, Get busy with remedial, with compensatory, with tutorials and the various kind of after-school programs’’ aimed at helping, he said.
"Many people are gjing to be surprised at how capable our kids are,” Kirby said of the overall effects
of the reform program.
The commissioner predicted the upcoming school year will begin much more peacefully than did the previous year, when the reforms were new and uninterpreted.
"We started school last year with a lame-duck (state) board that was not to give answers, was not to pass policies to implement the reforms,” he said.
House Bill 72, the school reform act, abolished the elected State Board of Education and replaced it with an appointed board. But due to delays in getting required federal approval of the change, the elected board was still in place when school began last year.
"The other problem we had was the Texas Education Agency itself. TEA itself was, in fact, responsible for what I call the TEA vacuum. Questions would come in, but nothing would come out. When something came out, it came out very profusely and there were three or four different answers to the same question.” said Kirby.
There are now "almost a ton of rules” in place to clarify the reform act, he added.
"We believe by having this in place the confusion that existed last year certainly will have significantly abated with the opening of school this year. Because school people have information and have an understanding, we’ll have a much calmer beginning than we had last year," said Kirby.
"That vacuum, that confusion that occurred last year is why so many people felt the sky was falling,” he added. "What’s happening now, given the time, given the rules, people are finding out it didn’t fall. It never was falling.”
JE ANSWE AR
Seguin New Braunfels
force in arrest
AUSTIN i AP) - A 12-year veteran patrol officer has been fired by Police Chief Jim Everett for using excessive force during the arrest of an unarmed man
The firing Wednesday was the second action this month against an officer accused of using excessive force.
Everett said he fired Officer David Mayfield because the person Mayfield struck had not resisted arrest. "The man was not a threat to the officer. He was not resisting," Everett said.
Mayfield had 21 internal affairs complaints brought against him during his years on the force.
According to police, Mayfield struck Juan "Johnny" Pena, 22, with a night stick Aug. 2. Pena suffered bruises and a cut to the head that required stitches.
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DALLAS (AP) — Removal of kidney stones usually means several days in the hospital and a painful
But a new treatment that immerses a patient in water and then
disintegrates his kidney stones with shock waves could reduce the pain, time spent in the hospital and even the cost of curing the health problem.
The new treatment uses a piece of equipment called a kidney lithotnpter, which lias been installed in the newly opened Ijtho-Uenter Southwest at Presbyterian Hospital in Dallas, one of two in a five-state area
In thus age of miracle medicine, it constitutes a miracle," Dr James Cochran, center director, told the Dallas Times Herald "The condition that usually requires at least a week in the hospital and a painful incision now can be treated w ith an overnight stay."
The average cost of $y,000 to $12,000 for such a stay will also be cut to between $»>.a00 and $3,500 with the new treatment, Cochran said Each year about a half million people in the United States are diagnosed with kidney stones, mineral deposits which font! in the kidney and often blink the narrow ducts leading to the bladder Although some stones pass through the urinary tract, as man> as 80 percent of patients must have surgery. Cochran said The kidney lithotnpter, approved by the Food and Drug Administration late la^t year, has already successfully treated 14 patients al the Dallas tenter, he said The $2 2 million project is a joint venture of Hie hospital, a group of physicians and Uro-Tech Management Corp of Houston, officials said The machine focuses shock waves on the stones, causing them to crumble into small particles that can be passed through the urine Tlie patient is plat ed under general anesthesia, then positioned on a reclining seat and lowered into a large tub of water The kidney stones are located with an X-ray unit, and the patient is positioned over a reflector at the bottom of the tub "The shock wave pulverizes and crushes the stones by setting up an internal vibration," Cochran said. The stones turn to sand, which can be passed through the urinary tract w uh minimal discomfort.
Doctors say the treatment is effective in about 80 percent of the cases Patients must be referred by their physicians
Policeman fired for excessive