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New Braunfels Herald Zeitung (Newspaper) - May 20, 2003, New Braunfels, Texas New Braunfels TUESDAY May 20, 2003 14 pages in 2 sections ■■hmm    I**    pages    III    C    SCHHHerald-/ eitung . Vol. 152. No. 160 Serving New Braunfels and Comal County since 1K52 50 cents Fire Chief: New Braunfels needs all four firestations By Dylan Jimenez Staff Writer New BraunfelH Fire Chief John Herber wants to keep all four Firestations open, even if it means one of them would operate without an EMS unit. “My main job is too protect life and property, and I think my staff and my personnel can do that best out of four locations,” Herber said Monday following a department meeting to discuss operations. “What you’ll see is the stations will remain open, but that might be at the cost of taking an EMS unit out of service.” But if the city is willing to pad the department’s over time budget by 50 to 60 percent, the ambulance could still be manned, Herber said. The fire chief will outline his plans to city council at tonight’s budget meeting. The meeting begins at 6 p.m. at council chambers in the Municipal Building, 424 S. Casten Ave. “If they say, ‘No we can’t afford that,’ then its going to amount to us taking a unit offline,” Herber said. Either way, the Fire chief must consider ways to reorganize staffing of the city’s firestations. “I’ve got so many pieces of apparatus that I’m trying tx) staff, and that’s why I’m short of people,” he said. Convincing council to beef up the overtime budget could prove to be* difficult, since the budge*! has already been balanced and will be* presented tonight. But some coun-cilmembers have said they feel police and fire are the most important departments to fund. “Whatever happens, in order to keep that [fourth! station open, it will have a price tag to it, either service or dollars,” Herber said. If an ambulance were taken offline, floatation number five would likely be the station affected. “The firetruck in that area would remain and it wouldSee FIRE/7A Comal County deputy hit while clearing debrisBeatin’ the Heat By Dylan JimEnez Staff Writer A car hit a Comal County Sheriff’s Office deputy Monday morning while he was clearing debris from the mad. The driver was a doctor and was able to provide immediate care to Deputy Shawn Seesengood, 27, who was in critical condition as of 5:30 p.m. Monday. Dispatchers received a call at 5:52 a.m. report ing a wooden box in the middle of the mad on Farm-to-Market 306, five miles east of 281 on the nort h side of Canyon I jake. Several cars had already hit the box by the time Seesengood arrived on the scene at 6:07 a.m. “I guess there were pieces after that. And he may have been attempting to remove the pieces from the road,” said Corporal Tim Kolbe of the Comal County Sheriffs Office. The lights on the deputy’s patrol car were on. “He was hit in the legs and flew into the windshield of the car,” Kolbe said. Seesengood’s legs were fractured and his ribs were broken. The doctor who hit him gave immediate emergency care to the deputy and Bul-verde/Spring Branch EMS was in mute* at 6:14 a.m. and on the scene by 6:22 a.m. Two nurses also were on the scene. “We have a lot of medical folks out there that may work in San Antonio, and they commute and it’s not unusual to see a lot of medical people driving back and forth down the road," Kolbe said. No details on the doctor who hit Seesengood were available from the sheriff’s office, but no charges are See DEPUTY/7A • $$$¥& DAVID INGR A M/Herald- Zel lung Two-year-old Brishen Newton enjoys a piggy back ride from her mom, Rebekah, in the wading pool at Landa Park Monday afternoon. With temperatures already in the upper 90’s, the free swimming hole is a popular spot. ’Boarders to break in new skate park United Way cuts operating costs Tyler Knott pratices his skateboarding moves at Ernest Eikel Skate Park Monday evening. The park, which will be dedicated Thursday at 5 p.m., features ramps, quar-terpipes and rails. DAVID INGRAM/Herakl-Zoilung By Dylan JimEnez Staff Writer Skateboard enthusiasts won’t have to ride their boards on city sidewalks or vacant parking lots any longer. Thursday at 6 p.m., the Ernest Eikel Field Skate Park will be dedicated. IjocuJ skaters are invited to help break in the new park, which is located at S. Grape Street and Spur Street. Rodney Jones, a skate professional, and a professional skate team from Texas Ski Ranch (a local extreme sport park) are scheduled to perform demonstrations and explain skate park etiquette and safety. Mayor Adam Cork and County Judge Danny Scht*el will dedicate the park with a ribbon grinding instead of the traditional ribbon cutting. “We’re going to have (School and Cork) standing on one of those elements, and a skater is going to grind on his skateboard on the rail to ceremoniously open the skate park,” Thompson said. A lixail skate shop will give away a skateboard, and pizza and refreshments will be available. But the night really See SKATE/7A By Scan Bowlin Staff Writer A fund drive that fell $55,(HK) short, of its goal has forced tin* United Way of Comal County to cut operating costs by 7 percent. 'I’liiH year’s campaign collected just 90 percent or $495,(HK) of its goal, Executive Director Doug Hum* inerstroni said Monday. 'ITie shortfall forced some tough decisions by the United Way board. The local agency has enough money in its reserve fund to cover the $55,(KXI fund-raising short fall, Hammers!rom said. But in order to give as much money jim possible to the 25 health and human service organizations it supjjorts, the agency has taken steps to reduce its operating budget.. “When we didn’t make our goal, we wanted to find out what the impact was on our fund JIH a whole,” he hjikI. Staff is recycling all the materials posters, pens and campaign information it can and has plans to use t he same campaign theme next year as it did this pjist See UNITED WAY/7AInside Abby ..................................4    A Classifieds.........................4-6B Comics................................BA Crossword   8A Forum.................................SA Movies................................4A Obituaries...........................3A Sports..............................1*2B Today........................  2A TV Grid...............................3B Key Code 7B »1 56S25 00001 i Patriotic celebration expresses thanks to troops, first responders By Sean Bowlin Staff Writer A ret itch! US. Army officer told Republican Women and their guests Monday night that America’s military victory in Iraq would prove to be historic. Et. Col. Borah Van Dor-molen of the Texas Federation of Republican Women and Navy Et. Bo Hanle were guest speakers for the patriotic celebration sj>onHon*d by the New Braunfels Republican Women. About 150 people listened to anthems for the Army, Navy, Marine Corps, Air Force and Coast Guard and thanks were offered to local “first responders” emergency medical technicians, sheriffs, police who come when there’s a crisis. Et. Col. Dormolen made history as one of the first female Army officers assigned to West Point in 1977, right after the initial group of women cadets was admitted to the U.S. Military Academy. She also served as a battalion commander in the First Cavalry Division. Van Dormolen talked about the tactical and strategic moves made by America that helped to win the war with Iraq. She said that because the government of 'IVirkey would not allow the U.S. Fourth Infantry Division to enter that country, former Iraqi dictator Saddam Hussein thought that the United States wouldn’t start the invasion until the Fourth Infantry arrived. Hussein was proven wrong, she said. And U.S. forces did a good job destroying the command, control, communications and intelligence capabilities of the Iraqi military. “We moved ground forces before the air armada arrived," Van l>ormolen said. She said use of the “Predator Drone” was revolutionary and successful, giving the military eyes and ears over the battlefield and assist ing in gaining tactical objectives. All in all, the victory wjih historic, and Van Dominion explained why. “It sent a very loud message,” she said. “That is, ourSee THANKS/7A DAVID INGRAM/Heraki /sitting Retired Army Lt. Col. Borah Van Dormolen (2nd from left) places an “I Support Our Troops" sticker on Nancy Barke, while Navy Lt. Bo Hanle does the same to Carol Hanle Monday evening a1 a patriotic festival sponsored by the New Braunfels Republican Women. Van Dormolen and Hanle were guest speakers at the event thanking local “first responders" and the nation’s military. ;