In lieu of a volcano


IT HAS BEEN a coin toss this week for Kilgoreites trying to choose between watching distant happenings with the eruption of the Kilauea volcano on Hawaii’s Big Island and the royal wedding.

“I will just send you a copy of my itinerary,” quipped Kilgoreite Mitzi Hartfiel. “That way you can keep up with us. Mitzi had waited for years to see her dream vacation in Hawaii take place and something as insignificant as a volcano was not going to stand in her way.

Mitzi, husband Steve, son Zach and Bailey Hailey were staying on the island of Maui approximately 100 miles away from the volcano. There is a five-hour time difference between Texas and Hawaii, so reports from them were coming in late afternoon or evening.

They awoke one morning at 1:30 a.m., drove 2 hours and stood in 31 degree weather to see the famous sunrise on top of Mt. Haleakala above the clouds.

“It was colder than expected at the summit,” said Mitzi. “There was ice on the benches!” Other than bitter cold, no further complaints were heard about the trip with each passing remark calling the place a true paradise.

“Wow,” said their son, Zach. “Hands down the best thing I’ve done in my life. We got to tour the island in a helicopter. It was a blast. And who knew our pilot would be from Tatum, Texas. He even graduated from Kilgore College!” The pilot was Jesse Hernandez, grandson of a Brookshire grocery manager, Marie Parrish.

Zach and Bailey spent one morning parasailing and an afternoon zip-lining, trying to pack in as much as possible on this trip.

About the big volcano eruption on Hawaii Thursday, Mitzi let us know by text later in the day, “We haven’t been affected at all. We are getting reports that it is getting more unstable on the Big Island but we are safe on Maui.”

From welcoming rainbows to lush foliage to eating at famous restaurants like Mama’s Fish House, Steve and Mitzi declare this trip definitely a dream come true.

“We are spending a week knocking other things off our bucket list!” she excitedly exclaimed. Oh, yes, sounds like it was true paradise.

THE ROYAL WEDDING between Prince Harry and Megan Markle will take place at noon this Saturday in England. I don’t know why I didn’t receive a royal invitation, but I didn’t receive one for Princess Diana’s either. If you know of someone that has received one – don’t tell me, I will watch it along with millions of others on television.

ON THE HOME FRONT all eyes are on honor programs and preparations for commencement exercises. Kilgore High School’s commencement is May 25, at R.E. St. John Stadium and is scheduled for 8:30 p.m.; Overton High School, 2 p.m. May 27 at the Dodson Auditorium on the KC campus; Leverett’s Chapel, 7 p.m. May 31 at Leverett’s Chapel Auditorium; West Rusk High, 8 p.m. June 1 at the Bruce-Bradshaw Stadium and Sabine High School’s graduation will be May 4 p.m. May 26 at the Belcher Center.

KILGOREITE Billy Ryan Williams and friends finally made it to Surfside Beach this week. Billy has been hollering “ocean” ever since the first hint of spring and finally his schedule allowed him to flee that way. The trip was two-fold: taking his mother, Daelynn Williams, who lives in Pearland, out to dinner for a delayed Mother’s Day was first on the agenda. He claimed the restaurant she chose was not near as good as the Kilgore Chili’s where he works, but it was her choice and he gladly obliged. Brandon, Megan and Zachary joined the fun at the beach.

“The beach was clean, the water was clean and there was no sea weed floating around in it,” said Billy. “You can walk straight out from the motel onto the beach. And yes, I had a fabulous time!” You can practically guarantee he will be seeing that beach often through the summer month.

MORNING BREW at First Baptist Church was packed according to KNH Marketing Executive Judi Calcagno and arrived back at the office with a plateful of goodies to share. Morning Brew is hosted by Kilgore Chamber of Commerce and offers fellowship time with other business owners, members and friends. It is held once a month at various locations.

May His Love and Laughter Fill Your Hearts and Your Homes Throughout the Week. IN the meantime, we may be reached at or 903-984-2593.


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