Ozona History 7/13/23

August 11, 2023


10 years ago, Bob Falkner, a dedicated firefighter, resigned as the head of the Ozona Volunteer Fire Department after serving for 22 years. At the age of 77, Falkner cited a decline in his physical and mental abilities as the reason for his decision. He expressed his gratitude and bid farewell to the department during a meeting with the Crockett County Commissioners' Court and the fire department members. Falkner also shared his sentiments on his personal Facebook page, describing it as one of the most challenging days he had experienced in a long time. Despite stepping down as fire chief, Falkner affirmed his commitment to the department and announced his intention to continue serving as a firefighter. Reflecting on his extensive firefighting career spanning 52 years, he acknowledged the significant changes he had witnessed. Falkner began his journey in the fire service in Alpine, serving for two years while attending Sul Ross State University. He then spent eight years in Fort Stockton, ultimately leaving the position as captain. After a three-year hiatus, Falkner relocated with his family to Ozona on April 7, 1971, and became a member of the OVFD. Falkner passed away in 2022, but his impact on the OVFD is not forgotten.


The Crockett County 4-H Club's community service project called "Angel Tree" achieved national recognition 20 years ago. The project, aimed at providing Christmas gifts for underprivileged children in Ozona, won a fourth-place award in the 2003 "Colgate Youth for America" campaign. This campaign, launched by Colgate-Palmolive in 1973, sought to encourage community involvement among young Americans. The Angel Tree project was selected from over 2,000 entries nationwide. Each year, youth organizations such as 4-H, Girl Scouts, Boy Scouts, Camp Fire USA, Girls Incorporated, and Boys and Girls Clubs of America were invited to submit their best community service projects. The winners were announced in New York by young stars Hilary Duff and Michelle Trachtenberg, who served as judges on the celebrity Youth For America panel.


68 years ago in 1955, Crockett county reached significant rain fall over a span of a few rainy days. Most parts of the county received 3 inches of rain and many areas had over 7 inches of rainfall, the most in that area for years, and far above the July average of 2-3 inches. The rapids caused by the rain put the bridge over highway 90 out of use.


27 years ago, Lola Mae Daniel, a former teacher in the Ozona Public School System, received international recognition from the Delta Kappa Gamma Sorority. After dedicating 70 years to the teaching profession, Miss Daniel was honored on July 25 in Columbus, OH. This prestigious recognition comes after she was already acknowledged nationally by the organization the previous year. Miss Daniel's commitment and passion for education left a lasting impact on the lives of many. Her remarkable achievements and dedication have earned her a place among distinguished individuals, including the likes of Hillary Clinton, as the only other American woman to receive this international recognition. Though Daniels passed away in 2008, her legacy lives on.


41 years ago, Angelo State University’s women’s track coach Desiree Caudill announced the signing of four prospective track and field athletes, including Kaye Thompson, Ozona High School standout distance runner. Thompson was a national Division I qualifier in cross country and was also a national qualifier in the 3,200-meter relay. She ran at 3,000 and 5,000 meter distances for the Rambelles. The three freshmen prospects included one West Texas area athlete, long jumper Carla Seldon from Abilene. Seldon also finished fifth in the Class 5A 200-meter dash state championship. The two other freshmen were Katie Salmon of Nocona and Autumn Jackson of Mabank.


9 years ago, after dedicating over four decades to the Ozona United Methodist Church, Inez Ybarra, affectionately known as E.Z., announced his retirement at the age of 91. For 40 years, E.Z. served as the custodian and groundskeeper, providing loving care to the church and its facilities. Throughout the years, pastors and members have come and gone, but E.Z. remained a constant presence. The decision to retire left the church members and staff deeply saddened, as they greatly appreciated his daily presence and impeccable work. Ybarra passed away in 2015 but is survived by a loving family and church.

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