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New Braunfels Herald Zeitung (Newspaper) - December 13, 2003, New Braunfels, Texas Four-legged ‘Officer’ Rico remembered Retired New Braunfels police dog dies, but his memory lives on for his family By Scott Mahon Staff Writer Everyone will tell you their family dog becomes a member of the family. And it was that way for the Spence family and Rico, a black and tan German shepherd. Rico was different, though- Ile wasn't your ordinary dog. He had a job, and he was good at it. Every day for nine years, Rico went to work with Bill Spence, a K-9 handler with the New Braunfels Police Department. At the end of the day, Bill and Rico would go home, where Rico was indeed a member of the family. In fact, in the Spence family photo album, there is a photo of Rico on every page, with Bill and Nancy and with the Spence’s children, loseph and Julia. “We even had a ChrisUnas stocking for him every year," Nancy Spence said. “Everybody loved Rico. The kids loved him. Bill loved him. The neighbors loved him. Even the kids at school who got to know him, loved him.” Rico won’t be with his beloved family for this Christmas. The retired police dog was euthanized the day after Thanksgiv-ing. His memory lives on, though. Rico began working for the New Braunfels Police Department’s K-9 unit in 1992. Imported from Czechoslovakia, he was trained by Cpl. Spencer Gremmer, a 24-year veteran of the police department. “I remember we looked at over a IOO dogs when we selected Rico,” Gremmer said. “He was a year-and-a-half old.” After a three-month training program, Rico was certified in narcotic detection and patrol. “We train all our K-9s here locally," Gremmer said. “They’re trained to detect drug odors, human odors and for patrol work.” During his nine-year career, Rico was See MCO. Page 3A hi toti hi •win» •mm! - SUNDAY SATURDAY, DECEMBER 13, 2003 SPORTS UP FOR TWO New Braunfels Unicorns and Canyon Cougars boys' teams coast to victory in the first round of the River City tourney. Page SA FORUM IT'S A TOSSUP So-called economics experts can prognosticate all they want about the economy, but their guess is as good as yours. Page 4A je 1852. DEAR ABBY 3B „ CLASSIFIEDS 5-10B COMICS 2B CROSSWORD 2B FORUM    4A RELIGION 4B SPORTS 5-6A TV GRIDS 3B Serving New Braunfels and Comal FnoNTand Center New Braunfels decked out Weekend Christmas activities abound Markets soar, but 2004 not sewn up By Hope Yen AP Business Writer NEW YORK — As stocks reach levels unseen in nearly two years, experts are suggesting that investors consider dumping high-flyers such as tech and small-cap shares. That s because when economic growth slows in 2004, the likely sector leaders in the new bull market may well be stodgier investments such as materials, large-cap and dividend-paying stocks. “If you waited for Dow 10,000 as an all-clear to put money back in the market, that’s a bad trading idea,” *kaid Robert Streed, portfolio manager of Northern Trust Select Equity Fund in Chicago, fie noted that the top sector gainers this year will likely see tepid gains in 2004. “Now they’re overbought,’’ Streed said. “Whether it’s a simple valuation call or too many aggressive projections out there in terms of what the business can do, there’s a high likelihood of fundamental disappointment.” The Dow Jones industrials crossed the 10,000 barrier this past week, powered by a batch of strong economic data and Federal Reserve comments suggesting higher interest rates weren’t coming anytime soon. It was a stunning recovery from a five-year low of 7,286.27 reached on Oct. 9, 2002, a date that turned out to mark the end of a grueling three-year bear market, as investors bet on an economic rebound once the war in Iraq winded down. The last time the Dow closed above 10,000 was May 24,2002. So far, the big winner in 2003 has been technology, with the Nasdaq composite index staging a remarkable 74 percent advance since the October 2002 bottom. Other gainers were sectors whose earnings is closely tied to the strength of the See ■COMOMY. Page 3A Hoops tourney Find out who goes home with t trophy and k who goes home with a bown after the River City Classic. Vol. 153. No. 26 14 pages, 2 sections CLICK 500 00001 High 60 Details Low 30 ... 1B By Scott Mahon Staff Writer The holiday season in New Braunfels offers everything from Christmas tours to a visit with Santa Claus, and the weekend is full of things to do. If you’re a patron of the city’s historical museums, or even if you’re just visiting, you’ll want to take advantage of the annual Candlelight Tour at the Sophienburg Museum, 401W. Coll, 629-1572. This year's tour, sponsored by the Historic Museum Association, will be today from 5 p.m. to 8 p.m. at city’s three historical museums — Heritage Village, the Sophienburg Museum and Conservation Plaza. Each museum will be decorated in a different Christmas theme, and visitors will be able to sample German cuisine, including appetizers and a main course. Admission is $3 for-adults and is good for admission to all three museums. Children under 18 are free if accompanied by an adult. Conservation Plaza is located at 1300 Church Hill Dr. and is operated by the New Braunfels Conservation Society. Heritage Village, home of the Museum of Texas Handmade Furniture, is located at 1370 Church Hill Dr. and is operated by the Heritage Village Society of New Braunfels. For the kids, Santa Claus will be at the North Pole Village at Canyon Lake. The 7th annual North Pole Village opened Thursday and will operate through Dec. 20. Sponsored by the Community Resource and Recreation Center on Canyon Lake, the winter wonderland also includes a post office where children can write letters to Santa Claus, a bakery where children can make cookies, a petting zoo, a gift market and sleigh rides. The Village will be open from 7 to IO p.m. today. Admission is $3. For information, call (830) 964-3003. The annual Cheer Fund, DAVID MQRAM/Herald-Zeitung David Dean, a volunteer for the New Braunfels Police Department's Blue Santa program, moves gifts wrapped for delivery to needy children. REBECCA S. ROGERS/Herald-Zeitung Herald-Zeitung employee Chris Mingo prepares Cheer Fund food packages. sponsored by the Herald-Zeitung and donors in conjunction with the Community Service Center, will be delivering toys and packages of food staples today to New Braunfels-area families needing assistance this holiday season. More than 200 families in will receive Cheer Fund packages containing food items such as canned milk, bread, peanut butter, jelly, Christmas candy and canned vegetables. Kids will have a chance to make their own gingerbread house and cookies today dur ing the Great Gingerbread Event, which will be from 9 a.m. to noon at McKenna Children’s' Museum. Cost is $25 for members (one parent and one child) and $30 for nonmembers. For information, call 620-0939. For those needing to get some exercise, the 11th annual Jingle Bell 5K run will take place today at Landa Park. The adult's race will begin at 9 a.m., and children will race at 9:45 a.m. More than 400 runners are anticipated. Registration will be at 8 arn at Landa Park. Blue, green Santas ready for their magic By Dylan Jimtnez Staff Writer Local law enforcement officers are spreading holiday cheer witn two gilt-giving programs. The community can help support them. Johnny Carino’s Country Italian Restaurant will dedicate 25 percent of its sales Ihursday to the Blue Santa program sponsored by the New Braunfels Police Department. Ray Gallagher, manager at Carino’s, and NBPD invite the community to help out. See SANTA Page 3A Sugar and spice and everything nice for Ken Konno. who holds still as elf Linda Cantrell paints a gingerbread man ncBcwwt a. nuutna/neraia-cenung on his cheek at the North Pole Village near Canyon Lake. The village offers Christmas festivities through Dec. 20. Photo submitted This scrapbook photo shows Officer Bill Spence of the New Braunfels Police Department with Rico, his partner of nine years. t ;