New Braunfels Herald Zeitung (Newspaper) - December 15, 1994, New Braunfels, Texas
Ms. Huff’s Mountain Valley kindergarten is Class of the Week, P.6
New Braunfels Sesquicentennial March 21,1845
14 pages in one section ■ Thursday, Dec. 15,1994
R 1 Serving Comal County for more than 143 years ■ Home of MARTHA WILSON
f a xv
Vol. 143, No. 24
Arts & Entertainment..................11A
Birthday wishes from the Herald-Zeltung!
The New Braunfels Herald-Zeltung extends die following birthday wishes to; J. Don Sullivan, Edmund E. Proske,
Vicente Criollos, Mary Jane Cathcart, Emma Jean Crabill, Mary De La Fuente, Durward Peterson, Leonard Prell, Donald Stoats, Regina Wersebe, Ashley Lahela Friesenhahn (ll years!), Timmy Schriewer, Martha Wilson, EU Hernandez, Dina Arlene Gonzales (of Houston).
Donations to H-Z Cheer Fund continue
Area citizens have begun to submit donations to the Herald-Zetfung's annual Cheer Fund campaign, which provides food to needy local families for the Christmas holidays.
Anyone wishing to donate can do so in person by coming by the Herald-Zeltung office at 707 Landa St., or call Cheer Fund Director Carol Ann Avery at 625-9144.
Volunteers for food delivery ire needed, Avery said Anyone wishing to sign up for delivery can do so by calling Avery. Today's donations include:
■ Anonymous - $30
■ Ann St S.E. Maggaid - $25
■ Mrs. Dorothy E. Wimberley -$10
■ Mr. & Mrs. Herb Schneider -$80
City's Christmas trss recycling begins Dec. 26
The city of New Braunfels and New Braunfels Utilities will be sponsoring the 8th annual Christmas tree recycling program in Landa Park, beginning Dec. 26.
An area in the swimming pool parking lot will be designated as the site to receive the trees. Approximately 1,491 trees were converted to mulch last Christmas. Approximately 7,448 trees have been mulched during the last seven years.
Nails and other metal fasteners should be removed from the trees, officials mid.
The program is used to promote water conservation within the area. The mulch is available hee to residents.
United Way kudos
A round of applause to the employees of Whetaburger Restaurant and Longhorn OHM for their IOO percent participation in the 1994-95 United Way campaign.
The winning numbers
This newspaper is printed on recycled newsprint
HenM-Zmtung photo by MICHAEL DARNALL
Judge Robert T. Pfeuffer (left) and Don Moorhead have been together In the 207th District Court for the peat 21 years. Today, they WHI end their tenures at the Comal County courthouse.
Judge Robert Pfeuffer recalls the past 21 years in the 207th court
By CRAIG HAMMETT
Many people around this county probably refer to him simply as the “The Judge.”
For 21 years, Judge Robert T. Pfeuffer has held court in Comal County, Hays and Caldwell as well, all part of the 207th Judicial District. Appointed by Gov. Dolph Briscoe in 1973, he is the only judge the District has ever known.
Judge Pfeuffer and ——
his court reporter, Don ■ See Editorial, Page 4
Moorhead who is also -
retiring, started together in 1973.
“It was just the two of us,” said Pfeuffer, who said office space and accommodations were somewhat quaint, to say the most. “We lined law books, most of them were out of date, along the wall. We used them as wallpaper.”
The judge will tell you things have changed quite a bit. The numbers, not to mention a new courthouse annex, point to the enormous growth the county has experienced.
The 207th was created to give preference to criminal trials. After a few years, another district was already needed.
“The 274th. I got that going because I could see the population of the county continuing to explode,” he said.
Every aspect of the 207th court has grown. In 1974, the Probation Department held three employees with a budget of $69,000. Today, those numbers are 62 employees and $2 million. The county collected $1 million in probation supervision fees last year.
County Attorney Nathan Rheinlander believes Pfeuffer is especially good in the juvenile area, one that as the numbers suggest, has grown and is now a hot topic.
“He is one of the mo* conscientious juvenile justices I've ever seen. I've seen him be anything from a fatherly figure to the voice of God. He can come down on them like nobody'! business.” said Rheinlander.
Judge Pfeuffer and hit staff used to handle everything from speeding to murder trials. Now, a computer links the three counties in the district and chooses the potential jurors. Family law cases such as divorce and child support are held * the county court level, something Pfeuffer also helped institute years ago to adapt to the increasing burden.
Although the oouit doe! give preference to criminal trial!, the civil caaea dominate filing!. In 1983, the court in Comal County alone disposed of 711 civil cases. By 1993, that number had risen to 1,465.
“We've become a society that files a lawsuit * the drop of a hat," said the judge.Jt used to be rare that someone would file a lawsuit and represent themselves. Now, we see it all the time, especially in divorce caaea."
Although there la tremendous population
Moorhead eyes final ‘first’
By TRIO 4. SARCIA
Ufo for Don Moorhead has been full of first!.
Moorhead was bom on the first day of the first month of 1931; he was one of the fir* court reporters in Texas* first juvenile court; he was the fir* court reporter in Texas' fir* court of domestic relations and he went to worit for 207 District Judge Bob Pfeuffer on Sept 1,1973.
Moorhead will have worked 37 years and four months in all when he retires Jan. l.Twentyone years and four months of that will be for Judge Pfeuffer.
"Everything rn my life has started on Sept. I, and th* *s fine with me because that's a holiday” he said.
Pfeuffer will also retire, effective Jan. I.
Moortiead, who first moved to the New Braunfels area three months before the took the job with Pfeuffer, worked in the Harris County courts and as journeyman electrician before be took to the courts at the encouragement of his father.
His father was a District Judge.
*1 tell people that I have there was only one time in my life that I have not been under a district Judge," he said •
For three months Moorhead was a freelance court reporter in his transition from Houston to New Braunfels. I
“It was the fir* three months I was not under the supervision of a dUtrict judge,” he Mid “it was the wont three months af my life."
He was hired by Pfeuffer when the judge was elected, but he warily accepted fee judges offer of a $7,800 annual Mlary.
Moorhead said at the rim*, two of his kids were in coliege and another was about to enter. However, he received pay raises along the way
Mid his wife Betty. ............
Betty, manager of Guinn Printing in New Braunfels, is the person Don Myt he has foe mo* respect for.
“One of the reasons I worked for as long as I have, and stayed on top of the game is that I had not one concern abort dungs * home," Moorhead said “I had friends who were engulfed with borne problems.
“I just never had it"
Several things have changed since Moorhead started reporting. One of the mo* noticeable is just how much more things are drawn out now-s-days, said Moorhead
Recently he gathered a case file for a employee injury case, in which the alleged iryury was not dear. The file weighed 31 pounds, Moorhead said
He has also noticed that mort court reporters are women today. Moorhead said court reporting has been a field th* has been open to minorities and women. But regardless of who is in foe field, Moorhead said foe reporter needs stamina.
“It's foe toughest job in the world when your working,** be said. “Any young person could do it for four months, but anything more and they'll need to develop stamina.”
Moorhead said he has more than enjoyed waking for Pfeuffer, and he respects the judge for his attitude in and out of court. He said foe judge deserves foe attention be was getting for his retirement, not him.
As Moorhead leaves foe court he reflected on mm experiences and said: “Very few people leave the courtroom happy. Hardly anyone leaves foe courtroom with what they warn."
Moorhead may have. He's leaving with his health, family arui retirement-
— ■ • 11 » - - - » rn ■ > ii'
growth in foe county, many aa Judge Pfeuffer, were bom and raised here, and chose to make their professional living here. Sometimes, being a judge, one has to learn how to deal with situations where acquaintances show up in court, under various circumstances.
“lf I felt a little queasy in the stomach, I better not handle it,” Judge Pfeuffer toys a long-time judge once told him. “The integrity of the system mu* be kept."
“He it your honor when he's on foe bench, when he's off foe bench we're on a first-name baria," said long-time local attorney Jack Borchera, who graduated law school with Pfeuffer and has known him ill these years. “He's fair, a gentleman. There were some erroneous judgments sometimes, ftom my perspective of ooutie."
Pfeuffer has seen this country's judicial system grow to where there is even a cable talcrvi-rion channel. Court TV, th* shows nothing but actual trials. The O J. Simpson trial Ires thru* the
courtroom into primetime.
Judge Pfeuffer never imagined anything such Mthis.
“Mo* of it is boring as foe devil. Jury selection is boring,” said Pfeuffer.
Ju^oe Pfeuffer apparently has many interests. He raise* 'Kids on a large-scale baria, tends to his cattle and likes to hunt, to name a few things. He has been active in many community organizations over foe years.
“One of the nice* things is th* he never brought home his oases," Mid his wife of 37 yean, Jean. “He realized th* pretty early."
Ami he is not really quitting the bench, only retiring. The judge, who is “only 57," will become a Senior District Judge which enables him to travpi to any courtroom in the stale when nfriwl
It's like when Tom Landry left foe Dallas Cowboys. He's foe only judge the 207th hM ever had," said District Attorney BUI Reinter. “lt'U take soma goring used to."
Popular eatery sustains minimal damage last night
By TECLO J. GARCIA
A fire probably caused by an electrical short in a neon sign * Molly Joe’s forced fire fighters to respond to the popular New Braunfels eatery la* Wednesday night.
Fire officials said damage was minor * the restaurant, however, flames were visible when trucks arrived at Molly Joe’s.
The fire was doused quickly and the restaurant sustained minimal damage to its exterior.
No one was hurt in the incident. Employees evacuated the building before fire fight- ——■
era arrived. ^ wtofto New Braun- Ll_|_- H fela Fire Mar-
shal Elroy Friesenhahn Mid Wilton it did.’
-David Graham Molly Joels manager
early detection by employees neipca xcep me damage in
Manager David Graham said he was working when the fire was discovered.
Graham said should the fire have started later in foe evening, no one would have seen it and the damage would have been much worse.
“We woe lucky it happened when it did,” he said.
Molly Joe's will be open for burineM today, he Mid.
Drop out rate on the decline at NBISD
By CRAIG HAMMETT
Dropout rate figures for the New Braunfels Independent School District dropped dramatically in 1991-92 and continue to hold steady the pa* few years, according to NBISD officials.
Rales presented to the achoo! board foil week show dropout totals over the la* six years. Total numbers for the district in 1990-91 had IU students drop out of school. Th* number fell to 65 in 1991-92.
Superintendent Charles Bradberry Mid several programs were initialed to curtail the dropout rate.
“Th* (1990 number) was ju* way too high,” he arid. “There were about IO or 12 different things we started ” Bradberry said programs such m HOSTS, high school GED programs, and an attendance officer were ju* of few of foe items implemented.
In foe la* three years, foe total district number has remained about foe same, with 56 in 1992-93 and 61 in 1993-94, under three percent of grates 7-11
Bradberry said results of the Ombudsman alternative school, started this year, will not be known until next year.
Of the rix grades li*ed, tbs ninth grade had the highe* number of dropouts in five of the rix yean.Only 9 more shopping days until Christmas! Shop New Braunfels First!