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"Government does not solve problems; it subsidizes them."
Ronald Reagan

"Government's view of the economy could be summed up in a few short phrases: If it moves, tax it. If it keeps moving, regulate it. And if it stops moving, subsidize it. "
Ronald Reagan

"No government ever voluntarily reduces itself in size. Government programs, once launched, never disappear. Actually, a government bureau is the nearest thing to eternal life we'll ever see on this earth! "
Ronald Reagan

"There are no easy answers' but there are simple answers. We must have the courage to do what we know is morally right. "
Ronald Reagan

"To sit back hoping that someday, some way, someone will make things right is to go on feeding the crocodile, hoping he will eat you last - but eat you he will."
Ronald Reagan


By Valerie McGiboney 

They say everything’s bigger in Texas!  Texan’s strive to prove this point in nearly everything we do. We can, on occasion, be downright obnoxious about it and don’t really care how others outside of Texas feel about it.  However, with all of the boasting some of us Texans are so very good at---comes a softer side that’s just as big.  This story is about HEARTS AS BIG AS TEXAS, of which, some of the biggest in the Lone Star State can be found right here in North Texas.  These selfless friends recently wore their hearts on their sleeves, and in their pockets, as they came through in a myriad of ways to help their neighbors recover from horribly damaging wildfires that plagued our region in mid April.  

It is not uncommon for Texas to see its share of seasonal drought and such was the case that provided the fuel for these infernos that destroyed or heavily damaged more than 90,000 acres in and around our own Montague County. Bowie, Saint Jo and Sunset are just a few of the towns that received the brunt of the furor that swept through around April 9th.  Fireman from towns across the county, including many of them volunteers, risked life and limb to battle the fires and rescue numerous victims.  It’s hard to truly appreciate these brave men and women until we see them in action battling such hellish conditions.  They were and are true American Hero’s.  These towns are quintessential Texas.  Residing in them is the type of folks that make the very soul of Texas what it is.  Farming is the primary industry.  Countless heads of cattle, horses and other livestock along with endless fields of farm produce and fruit trees provide for their livelihood.  Tragically and sorrowfully, the path of the fires took with it the lives of local citizens Matt and Cathy Quinn, as well as numerous livestock and other innocent animals.  One could not turn on the local news without viewing the devastating images.  But in the midst of all of this tragedy, a resounding common message continued to be heard in every newscast and printed report—these people, many who lost everything they owned, prevailed. They stated they were grateful to be alive-- as material things could be replaced.  They thanked God for their blessings…and blessings came. 

As we see so many times across this great country, in the face of disaster comes triumph. For Montague County it came in the form of hundreds of neighbors from communities across North Texas that rallied to take care of their own.  In a matter of days after the fire, a few small business owners and community folks organized a true TEXAS HOEDOWN fundraiser that took place on May 1st at the Bowie VFW.  Friends and neighbors worked tirelessly as hundreds of phone calls and emails went out to gather high dollar items for a silent auction and donations of checks, food and other goods for the fire victims and fire departments.  Among the hundreds of donations received were a NASCAR package from Texas Motor Speedway, a signed jersey from Mavericks NBA star Dirk Nowitzki, an original painting of a longhorn and her baby by local artist Sherri Alexander, a deluxe hunting package,  and yes a reconditioned vintage 1950’s Vortalex 16” fan from Vintage  Charlie Hall from Colleyville, known very well around these parts for his BIG as Texas heart, donated an entire crew with Texas brisket and all the trimmings to provide enough complimentary food for all that attended which ended up at over 1,000 people.  A large Coach was donated to transport friends from all over the Dallas Ft. Worth metroplex--along with their credit cards and checkbooks in tow.  Dallas’ Channel 11 News and Texas News 21 sent film crews, 95.5 FM broadcast live from the event and Dave Alexander, who performs with Asleep at the Wheel and often with Willie Nelson, brought his entire band to provide entertainment and Dave himself ran the auction.  It was a remarkable experience for all who witnessed it.  Over $75,000 was raised and donations are still pouring in. 

That May evening at the Bowie VFW, there were no thoughts of whether or not you were a Democrat or a Republican, or if one was a victim of the downed economic situation.  Everyday troubles were set aside.  This was an extraordinary demonstration of the human spirit at its very best; Of love and brotherhood, selflessness and compassion.  A reminder of why I’m so proud to be a Texan and to have been blessed with knowing so many Hearts as Big as Texas!


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