Vietnam Veterans of America, Chapter 973

Vietnam Veterans of America, Chapter 973

The Vietnam Veterans of America will meet this Thursday at Grandy’s Restaurant in Sherman. The meeting begins at 7 p.m., but attendees are encouraged to arrive early and have a Dutch treat meal prior to the session.

Members are asked to bring a new, unwrapped toy for the Toys for Tots program. The toys will be collected during and after the meeting by the Marine Corps League.

The chapter is now represented with a Facebook page, created by Jerry Wrenn, chapter secretary.

For more information, contact Charles Holcomb, chapter president, at 903-893-1129.

Friends of Hagerman

The Friends of Hagerman group has selected Jimmy Thomas as its December "Photographer of the Month." Some oe his photos taken at Hagerman National Wildlife Refuge are currently on display at the Friends’ website,

Thomas first learned about the refuge through the annual BirdFest Texoma held earlier this year. At that event, he participated in photography classes with Kathy Adams Clark and John English. A resident of Decatur, Thomas began photography in the 1960s, shooting black and white and then developing and printing the photos himself. He continued taking photographs over the years and, this year, became more serious about the technical aspects of photography. He started Istlan Photography and most of his work involves wildlife, nature and landscapes in Texas. He does, however, have a photo shoot planned for Antarctica next January. His photos featured on the Friends’ website were taken with Canon 5D Mark III and Canon 7D cameras, using a Canon 300mm f/2.8 lens, along with 1.4X and 2S extenders, 100-400mm and 24-105mm f/4 lenses supported by Wimberly and Gitzo heads with a Gitzo tripod.

Grayson County Rotary Club

Rotary District 5810 Governor Ean Sullivan recently made his official visit to the Grayson County Rotary Club. His presentation included his own story of becoming involved in Rotary and some of his experiences.

Sullivan joined the Plano Rotary Club about 25 years ago at the insistence of his wife, Jan, whose father had been a Rotarian. The couple had just moved to Plano and he was working to begin a Certified Public Accountant practice. He became even more involved in the organization when Herb Hoxie, his fellow Rotarian, became the district governor. Hoxie asked Sullivan to serve on his District Conference Committee. The conference was held in Puerto Vallarta, Mexico and, while there, the committee was challenged to come up with a service project there. They contacted a Rotary Club in Puerto Vallarta and asked what they could do within a three day period while there. It was suggested that they could provide school supplies to school children in need, along with painting the school building. The Rotarians, Sullivan and Hoxie included, spent a full day with the students, passing out supplies and painting. While there, they were also shown a slum area with about 200 children who needed a school. The Rotarians at the conference donated their own money to begin a fund to build the school. They were aided by Don Carter, the former owner of the Dallas Mavericks, who was also at the conference. Once back in Texas, other Rotary Clubs learned of the school project and enough money was raised to build the new school. The project continued and a second school was constructed. The Plano Rotary Clubs, along with Richardson Central, also built a children’s medical facility in Plano.

To learn more about or share information with the Grayson County Rotary Club, call Terry Everett at 903-814-0292 or visit The group meets at 6:50 a.m. every Wednesday at Fulbelli’s Restaurant in downtown Sherman.

Martha Jefferson Randolph Chapter, NSDAR

Members of the Martha Jefferson Rarndolph Chapter of the National Society Daughters of the American Revolution recently gathered with members of the Grayson County Historical Society to rededicate a monument on the Grayson County Courthouse square. Also attending were various city and county officials.

The monument commemorates the Butterfield Overland Stage Route and Marcy’s California Trail. The Butterfield line operated from 1858 until 1878. The monument, a project of the MJR Chapter, was first erected in Washington Park in 1936. The idea of erecting the marker was first presented by Mrs. W.H. Lucas to the MJR chapter in 1919. Mrs. Lucas was the DAR chapter historian and a member of the Grayson County Historical Society. The marker project was finalized in 1936. This year, the marker was removed from its original site, restored and is now been seated on the courthouse grounds.

Welcoming attendees to the rededication was Teddie Ann Salmon, the MJR chapater’s historical preservation chairwoman. Judge Horace Groff gave the invocation, and the pledge to the flags was led by the MJR regent, Beverly Martin. John Ramsey, president of the historical society, gave a brief history of the monument.

The presentation of the monument was made by Salmon to Phyllis James who accepted it for the county in the absence of Judge Drew Bynum. Receiving two special recognition awards for their work on the project were Greg Allen, director of the Grayson County Facilities Department, and Scott Masner of Love Monument Company.

Denison Rotary Club

Yaven Hernandez presented last week’s Denison Rotary Club program. Introducing Hernandez was Rotarian Mike McKinley.

Hernandez, a Denison High School student, was chosen for the RYLA (Rotary Youth Leadership Award) camp. Kailey Hamilton of DHS was also selected. The RYLA camp is attended by young men and women selected by Rotary Clubs. Hernandez gave a rundown of how the camp operated and the activities they participated in such as team building. It was stressed that teamwork is crucial in effective leadership.

This week’s guest speaker at the Denison Rotary Club meeting will be Bill Murchison, a longtime Dallas newspaper columnist. He will present "Politics and Liberty and How It Evolved."