State employee group honors lawmakers for preserving pension fund

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State Rep Dan Flynn, right, poses with TPEA executive director as he receives his award.

Rep. Dan Flynn (R–Van) and Rep. Roberto Alonzo (D–Dallas) have been named Legislators of the Year by the Texas Public Employees Association, a nonunion, nonpartisan legislative advocacy organization for Texas state government employees and retirees.

Flynn and Alonzo distinguished themselves in the eyes of the association’s 15,000 members for the leadership role they took in addressing the unfunded liabilities of the Employees Retirement System pension fund through the authorship and passage of House Bill 9.

The two lawmakers were honored at the TPEA Awards Luncheon earlier this month at the Holiday Inn–Town Lake in Austin.


Dealer attends executive conference

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John David Crow of Wills Point Ford and Wills Point Chevrolet recently participated in an intensive, four-day seminar for dealers in Dearborn, Mich., sponsored by Ford Motor Company.

The seminar discussed ways to meet or exceed customer expectations and to help those customers be more completely satisfied every time they visit the dealership to shop, to buy or lease a new or used vehicle, or to get their existing vehicle serviced.

Ford executives were involved with dealers throughout seminar and a variety of programs that Ford provides to support dealership actions were highlighted.

As part of the seminar, dealers had a tour of an assembly plant to see for themselves how quality is built into every new Ford vehicle, that process assisted by Ford management and United Auto Workers sharing common goals and encouraging teamwork, car company officials said.


WPISD to host Fourth Annual “Back to School Fair”

The Wills Point Independent School district is excited to announce that we will be hosting the fourth annual “Back to School Fair” for our students who may qualify for free and reduced lunches.

This event will give our students an opportunity to participate in several activities that will be offered that day.  Some of the activities include vaccinations, vision screening, haircuts, dental supplies (samples of tooth paste and tooth brushes), hygiene products, books and school supplies.

Parents will have the opportunity to complete the necessary paperwork to receive free or reduced meals.  Information will be available about the CHIP (Children’s Health Insurance Program) program, the Lone Star Card and Medicaid.  A representative from WIC (Women, Infant and Children) will be at the event.  Registration for primary students will also be available.


Freshman orientation planned for TVCC

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Incoming freshmen attended the first freshman orientation at TVCC.

Trinity Valley Community College in Athens will host a second freshman orientation for Saturday, Aug. 1.

Registration is $35 for students and $10 for parents. The fee covers lunch, all programs and materials. Sign-up deadline is July 29.

Students will learn how to transition from high school to college, register for fall classes, financial aid and attend sessions on money management, campus security, and the Cardinal Connection (the online student portal for information and managing applications, student financial aid and more,) school officials said.

For more information, contact TVCC Counseling at 903-675-6350 or email


Storytime at the VZC Library

The theme for Storytime this week at Van Zandt county Library was camping. Mrs. Rhonda had a campfire and read books like “Arthur Goes to Camp” by Marc Brown and “I’m Going to Climb a Mountain In My Patent Leather Shoes” by Marilyn Singer. Next week the theme will be turtles. 


For more stories like this one, subscribe to the Wills Point Chronicle or pick up a copy from one of our vendors.


Genealogical group to hear about land research

"Start with Land" will be the program topic to be presented by Tresa Tatyrek of Dallas for the Van Zandt County Genealogical Society meeting scheduled for 2 p.m. Saturday, July 25, at the main county

library located on First Monday Lane in Canton. 

Her newest topic will guide the genealogist to online research of some of the best sites available when researching land records. She will touch on the Bureau of Land Management website, the Virginia Northern Neck online records available through the Library of Virginia, North Carolina Grants which are being put up by the North Carolina Archives, and Pennsylvania Patents Indexes and surveys.


Wills Point dentist receives Mastership Award

The Texas Academy of General Dentistry has announced that Robert Gilbreth, of Wills Point received his Mastership during the AGD 2015 Annual Meeting & Exhibits, held in San Francisco.

There are only 252 other dentists in the state of Texas who have received this award, the TAGD said.

 The Mastership Award is the highest honor available at the AGD and one of the most respected designations within the profession, according to information from the dental organization.

To accomplish this goal, Gilbreth completed 1,100 hours of continuing dental education.

“Masters understand that providing great smiles and good oral health for their patients are the result of going above and beyond basic requirements,” information from the TAGD states.


Miller, Griffin to wed

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Announcing the engagement and approaching marriage of Beverly Marlene Miller to Jack Carl Griffin of Fate.

The bride-to-be is the daughter of Elizabeth Rinks and Kelles Miller of Wills Point.  She attended Wills Point schools, attended Tyler Junior College and is employed by Dunham and Smith Military Sales.

The groom-elect is the son of Mary Todd and J.C. (Jack) Griffin, both deceased.  The groom attended Rockwall High School and is employed by Ridgemont Commercial Construction.

A small family wedding is planned for Sept. 12, 2015, at Chip Miller Farm. 

The couple will make their home in Fate.



Florida Georgia Line connects to Van Zandt

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Cameron McCasland

Florida Georgia Line and Villain Place bring home both the Bronze Telly and a Golden Hermes Award for Florida Georgia Line “Dirt” Lyric video.

And the video has a Van Zandt County connection.

It was produced by former Edgewood resident Cameron McCasland.

The lyric video for Florida Georgia Lines “Dirt” has been awarded the Gold at the 2015 Hermes Creative Awards in addition to a Bronze statue at the 36th annual Telly Awards.

According to the awards programs, “the video stands out in its use of practically placed text for the lyrics.”

The video was shot by Josh Ickes with lead art design employed by Villain Place designer J. Kyle Kelly.

This marks the second Golden Hermes and Bronze Telly for both Norman and McCasland who previously matched this feat for their collaboration on the music video for “Precious Time” by the rock n’ roll duo “Numerics” in 2009.

The music video was directed by Lloyd Aur Norman.


Genealogists get ‘snapshot’ of technology

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Van Zandt County Genealogical Society President Jan Crow, left, welcomes special speaker Sandra Crowley of Dallas during the society's June meeting at the main county library.

Genealogists get ‘snapshot’ of technology


“Snapshot of RootsTech” was the topic of the Van Zandt County Genealogical Society's meeting June 27 at the main county library with 27 members and visitors in attendance.

Sandra Crowley of Dallas was the special speaker. Society President Jan Crow of Mabank presided over the meeting.

Crowley stated that the concept is “simple and exciting, bringing together family history enthusiasts and technologists to discover new solutions for genealogy.” She spoke about the latest trends in genealogy, research tools, and storytelling from the most recent RootsTech.

Crowley is a genealogist and lecturer based in the Dallas/Fort Worth area. She specializes in using technology for all aspects of family history research.


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