Thoughts, prayers for Uvalde from La Vernia community

Greetings from the new Mayor of La Vernia!

It’s only been a couple of weeks since I took office, and I’m still getting settled in. I was a little nervous on Day 1, as we had a significant water leak across from the junior high school not long before I was sworn in. It brought back memories of Mayor Robert Gregory shortly after he took office. I still remember the picture of him standing in that huge hole, waist-high in water, in the middle of the night. We’ve come a long way since then, and have a great group of guys in Public Works. It was a huge relief, knowing that those guys were there to get everything back in working order throughout the night. As nervous as I was, I was reminded of the luck that comes with rain on a wedding day.

Speaking of rain, this recent rain we had sure was a blessing after that heat wave we had earlier in May. We’re expecting more rain in June, hopefully keeping the temperatures manageable.

If you’re into baseball and softball, the La Vernia City Park will be host to Little League Tournaments June 3-10 and June 17-24. All of this leads up to our big Fourth of July Parade and the Red, White, and Boom!

My well-wishes to all the La Vernia High School graduates. May you be blessed as you move forward into adulthood. Stay safe and mindful of your actions. Don’t forget, just because you’re now an adult doesn’t mean you have to stop listening to your momma. Dads, if you’ve done your job well, your children will move through this life with the strength and values that you bestowed upon them. Love them; they deserve it.

On a lighter note, the new parking lot in the park is awesome! Even on the days when the baseball and softball fields were rained out, there wasn’t even a puddle in the parking lot. The splash pad is up and working, as well. Special shout-out to city office staff, who went up and painted a non-slip surface on the splash pad to prepare it for summer. Thanks, ladies!

I’m sure you’ve also seen the big blue planters around City Hall. We had a group of junior high students collaborate on the artwork for each planter. We’re anticipating similar work in the future, including items to spruce up our new city park parking lot. Additionally, there are now 10 disabled parking spaces in the park — four near the Veterans Memorial (including a special Purple Heart parking space), four near the main walk-through entrance to the park, and two near the back entrance into the park near the T-ball field.

Just before the two-week mark of my first term as mayor, right as I thought everything was going smoothly, horrific tragedy hit the City of Uvalde. This event rocked the nation, the great state of Texas, and even our own hometown of La Vernia. Our hearts, minds, thoughts, and prayers go out to the community of Uvalde and the families of the victims.

There are folks in our community who are either from Uvalde or have friends or family there. We also have folks in our community who work in the medical field and were directly involved with the victims transported to San Antonio. Our hearts and prayers go out to everyone. Our La Vernia police worked with LVISD leadership to coordinate a presence at the schools in an effort to provide peace of mind to the parents of our students.

During all of this, it occurred to me that this was actually a triggering event for families and first responders in our area affected by or involved with the Sutherland Springs shooting in 2017. We think of these first responders as strong, resilient, even invincible individuals here to protect us and save us from harm. It’s very easy to forget that they are human beings with real emotions who were very deeply affected by these tragedies. I offer a special thank you and my personal prayers to all community leaders and first responders who ever have to deal with anything of this nature. You have my love and my respect. Also, a very special prayer for the Uvalde mayor and community leadership.

Thank you, Pastor Eric Miletti of Immanuel Lutheran Church for hosting a La Vernia Ministerial Alliance community prayer service May 25. Thank you for inviting me and others to be a part of such a beautiful and insightful service. It was very touching. Those who were there and got to hear the speakers got a special treat. I was especially moved by the words of La Vernia Officer Shawn Goolsby — time truly is a precious commodity that we all give, one of which we all need to remain mindful.

Take care, and hug your babies!

Respectfully loving and serving our community,
Martin Poore