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  • Location: New Braunfels, Texas
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New Braunfels Herald Zeitung (Newspaper) - January 12, 2003, New Braunfels, Texas Lifestyle/Classified Financial experts offer tips for budgeting after spending sprees/1 B Leisure Keep New Year’s resolution with fun fitness ideas/lnside New Braunfels Sports CHS girls soccer team remains unbeaten/12A SUNDAY January 12, 2003 34 pages in 5 sections m    a4    pages    in    0    SCCtK Herald-Zeitung wmmmmmmmmmmm Vol. 152, No. 52 Serving New Braunfels and Comal County since 1852 $1.00 Was fiery crash a suicide? K. JESSIE SLATEN/Herald-Zeitung Clockwise from left, before fire and rescue vehicles arnve, bystanders watch as munitions explode inside the cab of a pickup truck that had slammed into an overpass. Within minutes the truck was engulfed in flames. Father, brother said 29-year-old was despondent over divorce By Ron Maloney Staff Writer Family members said Saturday that a fiery crash at York Creek. Road that killed a 29-year-old San Marcos man could have been suicide. Rescue workers believed Drake Andre Luera died instantly when his southbound 2000 Chevrolet pickup slammed into a York Creek Road - overpass pillar at high speed just before ll a.m. The incident occurred on the east side Interstate 35 frontage road. Austin firefighter Tim Bailey and another passerby were unsuccessful in efforts to pull Luera from the crushed truck, which was consumed by fire in the 10:49 a.m. accident. After ammunition in the vehicle exploded, flames and safety concerns forced the pair to abandon the rescue. The victim’s brother and father, who drove to the scene, told officials Luera was despondent over his recent divorce. Department of Public Safety Trooper Randy Wells would not comment on what caused the accident. Precinct 4 Justice of the Peace Jennifer Saunders pronounced Luera dead shortly after noon Saturday. She did not order an autopsy. Experience counts in junior livestock shows Derek Quem, 15 (left), and his younger brother Cody, 11, prepare their hogs for the annual New Braunfels High School chapter livestock show Saturday at the fairgrounds. After four months of grooming, feeding and training, the boys were more than ready for the challenge. Derek walked away with the junior showmanship award and his hog brought home a reserve ribbon. K. JESSIE SLATEN/Herald-Zeitung By Ron Maloney Staff Writer It was a little like a beauty contest or maybe, more accurately, the Iowa Caucuses. There was plenty of livestock strutting its stuff Saturday at the New Braunfels High School livestock show — but it was basically for practice or experience at showing animals for regular and junior members of Future Farmers of America who are getting ready for the season’s big shows coming up in Houston, San Antonio and New Braunfels. Saturday’s event was overseen by NBHS agriculture teacher Ronnie Wunderlich, who has been conducting the shows for his entire career as a teacher, which started in 1972. “Nothing’s changed,” he said Saturday. “It’s the same office, the same classroom, the same shop. I think I’m on mv third chair.” One thing lias changed, though, and that’s the kids. Wunderlich has been around long enough.that he can WU his students today stones about their parents, back in the Dark Ages of the KRAUSE Canyon show today Students and livestock return to Ole Comal County Fairgrounds on Common Street today for the Canyon High School show. The show begins at 7:30 arn and continues until about 1 p.m. 1970s and ’80s when he taught them. That’s how it is for Derek Quent, 15, of New Braunfels, who brought a pair of 210-lb. pigs to the show. “Mr. Wunderlich taught my father,” said Derek, an NBHS freshman whose parents are Dwayne and Tana Quent. His brother, Cody, ll, showed’Satur-day, too. Derek s been showing animals since he was nine. This year hell be showing in San Antonio and Houston — “All the majors,” he said. Saturday, he showed a Hampe and a Cross. “We have a real good friend who has a pig business about a mile down the road from us,” Derek said. That’s See LIVESTOCK SHOW/10A Property tax payments due by Jan. 31 The deadline for paying 2002 property taxes without interest or penalty is Jan. 31. Tax Assessor and CoUector Sherman Krause told county commissioners Thursday the county’s total tax bite for reappraisals of 622 flood-damaged properties in Comal County would be less than his earlier estimates. “We are required by statute to start mailing tax statements on Oct. I, but property owners have until Jan. 31 to pay without penalty,” Krause said. The reminders are sent out in case a property owner lost the first tax notice, Krause said. ‘This notice is simply a reminder to help taxpayers a-void the penalties and interest. If you have already paid your property taxes, you should disregard the reminder notice, the tax assessor/collector said. Revised tax statements for property damaged in the July flood were mailed Thursday, Krause said. The Comal Appraisal District reappraised the properties to reflect lowered values after flood damage. Krause originally estimated revaluing flooded properties would cost the county about $30,000 this year in tax revenues. When the actual numbers came in, the total was $24,000. Commissioners authorized the reappraisal in August. Not receiving a tax bill doesn’t mean property owners aren’t responsible for their property tax payments, Krause said. Anyone who owns property in Comal County and has not received a tax statement should call the tax office at (830) 620-5521. The Comal County Tax Office is located at 205 N. Seguin Avenue. It is open from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday through Friday, A satellite office is located at 160 Oak Drive in Saltier. It is open from 8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Monday through Friday. Inside Abby............................. .......2B Classifieds ..5-12B Comics...................... .....14A Lifestyle ..1-4B Forum........................... 4A Local/State................. 6A Movies................ .......2B Obituaries..................... .......3A Records .....5A Sports......................... 12-13A Today............................ .......2A Stocks........................... .....11A »    56825    00002    8 ;