What made the news in 2012

December 29, 2012


We published the first months of our Year-End Review in Wednesday’s paper. Following are events that made up the last months of 2012.


The Texas Historical Commission votes to “recapture” from the county more than $360,000 for the courthouse restoration.

The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) backs off plans to lump Hood County into the Metroplex-area nonattainment zone for air quality.

TxDOT begins construction at Highway 377 and SH 171 to upgrade traffic and railroad signals.

A mistake with FEMA maps proves costly to homeowners who are forced to buy expensive flood insurance.

A man saves his father from drowning at the public boat dock on East Pearl Street.

Fire destroys the home of a couple on Long Creek Court.

Early voting is brisk for the primaries.

City, county and chamber officials gather for the ground breaking for NE Loop 567 connecting FM Road 51 north of Granbury to Business 377 West of the Lake Granbury bridge.

Granbury City Manager Wayne McKethan reports that the economy is continuing to improve, with increases in sales tax and hotel occupancy tax revenues.

Repeat sex offender Jackie Glen Ives gets life behind bars for not following sex offender rules.

Hood County starts a new tradition with the Memorial Day Field of Flags across from Jerry Durant Toyota.

The GHS accounting teams wins its third-straight gold medal at the University Interscholastic League Academic State Meet. Tolar High School wins the UIL state social studies event for the second straight year.


Several local incumbents are ousted in the primaries.

Court-at-law Judge Vincent Messina dismisses a 3-year-old assault case against former GHS football captain Talyne Bitner.

Tray Rogers saves the life of a 2-year-old girl from Iowa after he pulls her from the pool at the Best Western Granbury Inn and Suites and performs CPR.

Preserve Granbury returns donations made to the “Raise the Curtain” project after the Granbury City Council rejects their request to utilize the St. Helen’s building to expand the Opera House.

County and Y officials meet to discuss a survey that is a precursor to a possible referendum on the ballot.

Crossland Ninth Grade Center Assistant Principal Pat Yelverton is selected as principal for Granbury Middle School, the school board confirms.

Dana Goode, principal of Tommie Williams Elementary School in Arlington, is picked as the new principal for Mambrino in school board action.

Justin Lee Alston and Brittany N. Oliphant-Alston are to be tried together on injury to a child charges stemming from the emaciated condition of their 8-month-old son, dubbed Baby Riley.

Former GHS varsity football player Luke Thomas Urbanovsky, 19, is killed in a car driven by Marcus Click after the two leave an underage drinking party at Pecan Plantation.


A teen girl who allegedly hosted an underage drinking party that preceded a deadly car crash is arrested on four counts of providing alcohol to minors.

Delays on the Opera House renovation project bring financial hardship to the Granbury Theatre Company.

The Hood County Historical Society seeks donations of items to help recreate the county treasurer’s office at the courthouse as seen in a 1918 photograph.

The Chamber of Commerce estimates that 10,000 gathered on and around the square for the grand finale of the multi-day Fourth of July celebration.

Former Hood County Deputy Sammy Slatten is killed in a one-vehicle accident on Farm Road 1189, about 3 miles south of Brock.

A new food pantry opens at St. Frances Cabrini Catholic Church in partnership with Mission Granbury.

It is discovered that about 50 homes in the Johnson County section of Pecan Plantation have been affected by flood plain mistakes made by the Federal Emergency Management Agency.

Granbury native Dana Vollmer prepares for the 2012 Olympics in London.

Mayor Rickie Pratt says he was “naive” when he campaigned against former Mayor David Southern on an anti-council pay platform, and asks the City Council to approve a $12,000 pay raise.

Two Acton Middle School girls are arrested on charges of online impersonation tied to the creation of a Facebook page under another girl’s name.

New GISD Superintendent James Largent at his first school board meeting proposes employee pay raises and a tax rate reduction for property owners.

Granbury City Manager Wayne McKethan includes in his proposed budget for the 2012-2013 fiscal year a skateboard park and a dog park.

The Dora Lee Langdon Cultural and Educational Center officially comes under the city’s ownership after transfer papers are signed by Tarleton officials.


Granbury native Dana Vollmer wins a gold medal and sets a world record in the final of the women’s 100-meter butterfly at the London Olympics.

Republican James Deaver wins a runoff against Jean Cochran in the race for Precinct 1 county commissioner.

Bond is set at $1 million for each of the three suspects indicted on a capital murder charge in the shooting death of Gene Sabin.

The Sheriff’s Office investigates a fake Twitter account set up by someone posing as Sheriff Roger Deeds.

Edward Andrew Stumm, convicted of assaulting and terrorizing mentally handicapped adults in three group homes in Hood County, dies in a Huntsville prison.

Cindy Hyde announces that she will be closing the popular Dakota’s Kabin and Clothes Horse on the square.

Hood County experiences a death attributed to the West Nile virus.


Homeowners at The Island – a canal development off Waters Edge Drive – consider a lawsuit after being told they will have to spend as much as $30,000 to repair collapsing sea walls.

The Granbury City Council agrees to pay a $5,000 retainer to an attorney for legal advice regarding the Brazos River Authority Water Management plan.

The Granbury City Council rejects the mayor’s request for council raises.

Tolar Police Chief R.C. Cox and Hood County resident Cooper Dodd pull a man from a burning pickup truck after a fiery crash.

The six-month mark is reached in the search for missing Pecan Plantation resident William Lee Moore.

Sheriff Roger Deeds expresses a desire to see School Resource Officers reinstated at Granbury High School and both middle schools.

The Chamber of Commerce sponsors a “Day with Dana,” featuring Granbury native and Olympic gold medalist Dana Vollmer.

Levels for Lake Granbury are low, but not as low as the year before.

The Granbury City Council approves leasing its dock south of the Highway 377 bridge to a woman wanting to give yacht cruises.

Longtime gas station legend Perry Stewart dies.

Hood County mourns the loss of business John Hill, who was instrumental in the development in the south side of the city.


Tolar High school graduate Riley Stephens, a Green Beret with the 3rd Special Forces Group (Airborne), is killed in action in Afghanistan.

The Rio Brazos Music Hall, Granbury’s largest nightspot, closes one year after its opening.

A CareFlite crash three miles south of Eastland injures three crew members, including Flight Nurse Teresa Campbell of Granbury.

The Hood County Tea Party hosts a debate for the five Granbury City Council candidates.

Pecan Plantation resident Marita Crowder discovers a honeybee hive in her backyard containing 20,000 to 25,000 bees.

GISD officials say they will triple drug tests administered to middle school and high school students.

After 12 long years, the new Lipan gym is finally finished.

County commissioners discuss a new animal control facility.

A healthy early voting turnout keeps poll watchers busy.

An old C-119 Flying Boxcar airplane is brought to the U.S. Veterans Museum in Granbury from the Pate Museum in Tolar.


Justin and Brittany Alston each receive 60 years for injury to a child in a case involving the severe neglect of their infant son.

A fire in Blue Water Shores destroys two mobile homes and damages a third.

Voters approve a new $10 million recreation center.

Granbury City Manager Wayne McKethan says that the planned skate park will be constructed at the beginning of 2013.

Former Hood County Sheriff Edwin Tomlinson dies.

United Way of Hood County heads up the Kids Weekend Food Program.

A room at the Bridge Street History Center is devoted to items donated by local historian Vircy Macatee.

The Granbury City Council once again briefly considers – but then rejects – purchasing the St. Helen’s building for the Opera House project.


A robber brandishing a knife takes about $800 in cash from the cash register at Gold & Silver Buyers.

Newly elected James Deaver and Jeff Tout work with outgoing county commissioners to learn the ropes before taking their place on the Commissioners Court in early January.

Granbury resident Les Vanover, an all-American high jumper for Abilene Christian University in the early 1950s, is inducted into the school sports hall of fame.

Granbury Mayor Rickie Pratt wants to make changes to the Opera House design.

Former Navy torpedoman Jack Williamson, 94, of Thorp Spring, recounts the attack on Pearl Harbor.

An official with the Texas Historical Society comes for a final walk-through of the courthouse one year after completion of the renovation project.

The Granbury City Council holds a workshop to iron out issues with the Opera House project.

Three days after the deadly attack in an elementary school in Newtown, Conn., officers guard GISD campuses after rumored threats.

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