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Texas panel wants ‘heroes’ term removed from Alamo defenders in school textbooks:Reputed Hells Angels biker from Staten Island charged in shooting of rival

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On Friday, the Alamo became the center of an educational controversy in Texas. People from the Lone Star state are divided on whether or not those who struggled to gain Texas independence from Mexico are “heroes.”

A Texas advisory panel recommended the word “heroic” removed from all descriptions of the Texans who fought in the Alamo battle, the Tribunist reported. The advisory panel wants schools to deliver teachings of the epic battle in a different manner by eliminating any wordage that includes “heroic.”

Opponents believe that the battle of Alamo was the single most iconic representation of the state’s independence.

They also do not want students reading the “Travis Letter,” written by Lt. Col. William Barrett Travis during the fight on Feb. 24, 1836. Travis was the Commander of the Texan rebels in the former mission known as the Alamo.

The letter was written as enemy forces, under Mexican dictator Santa Anna, surrounded him and his troops. The Travis letter was addressed to “The People of Texas and All Americans in the world” and signed “Victory or Death.”

This letter is known as one of the most emotive documents in American history.

Currently, the wording for 7th-grade social studies unit title reads the “siege of the Alamo and all of the heroic defenders who gave their lives there….”

The pending argument is whether or not those who fought the Alamo deserve hero status.

Texas Governor Greg Abbott did not take news of the recommendation well.

The Governor tweeted: “Stop political correctness in our schools. Of course, Texas schoolchildren should be taught that Alamo defenders were ‘Heroic’! I fully expect the State Board of Education to agree. Contact your SBOE Member to complain.”

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Tweets poured in taking both sides but the majority sided with the Governor.

State Board of Education Chairwoman Donna Bahorich is also opposed to the idea.

State land commissioner George P. Bush tweeted: “This politically correct nonsense is why I’ll always fight to honor the Alamo defenders’ sacrifice. His letter & the defenders’ actions must remain at the very core of TX history teaching. This is not debatable to me.”

Debbie Ratcliffe, spokeswoman for the Texas Education Agency said the whole of the curriculum could “be reduced by either deleting information, combining standards or clarifying.”

“That was the goal. They suggested deleting the Travis letter because they think when teachers talk about the Alamo they will absolutely mention it, but not having it outlined specifically just meant teachers would spend less time on it,” Ratcliffe said.

The matter will be voted on by the Texas Board of Education.

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Reputed Hells Angels biker from Staten Island charged in shooting of rival
STATEN ISLAND, N.Y.— A Staten Island man is one of seven reputed Hells Angels bikers arrested after a rival bike member from the Pagans was shot during a melee Monday in Virginia, authorities said.
Dominick J. Eadicicco, 48, is charged with malicious wounding and firearm use in the commission of a felony, according to the Augusta sheriff’s office.
Eadicicco is currently being held without bail at the Middle River Regional Jail in Verona, Va.
Authorities said two Pagans were injured during the altercation that broke out at a hotel parking lot at around 3 a.m. Monday. One of the bikers was shot, and is in serious but stable condition, according to The News Virginian.

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Eadicicco is one of five Hells Angels charged in the shooting, but the sheriff’s office is still investigating to pinpoint the shooter, said Lt. Aaron LeVeck.
“We’re still working to put the pieces together to determine the exact shooter,” he said.
Nathaniel A. Villaman, 27, East Brunswick, N.J., Joseph Anthony Paturzo, 52, the Bronx, Richard E. West, 52, Baldwin, N.Y. and Anthony Vincent Milan, 28, of East Elmhurst, N.Y, were also charged with malicious wounding and use of a firearm in the commission of a felony, said the lieutenant.

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Horses for Heroes motorcycle ride pays tribute to Clint Arrington’s legacy
POWHATAN – The Steel Warriors Veterans Motorcycle Club’s annual Horses for Heroes Ride is always about honoring heroes. But at their fifth annual ride, they also honored one in particular.
The club held its ride on Saturday, Sept. 1, departing from West Creek Athletic Sport Complex and taking the long, scenic route to Lonesome Dove Equestrian Center (LDEC) in Powhatan.
Once at Lonesome Dove, it was time for an afternoon of fun and fellowship as about 250 club members and others gathered to help raise funds for Lonesome Dove, which offers free therapeutic horseback rides to veterans with disabilities.
But during that celebration, they took time to remember and honor Lonesome Dove founder Clint Arrington, who died on April 23, 2017, due to heart complications after a stay in the hospital.
Despite the large crowd in attendance, when the time came to honor Arrington’s memory and dedicate a memorial in his memory, Lonesome Dove was “beautifully silent,” said Karen Ylimaki, secretary/treasurer.
“With over 250 people there, it was so beautifully silent. They did the 21 gun salute and played Taps. The flag was folded and given to Clint’s grandson. The silence was so beautiful and touching,” she said.

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William Hunter Arrington said the event was a special day for him because so much was done to honor his grandfather’s memory. It felt like his grandfather was there speaking to him in a way, he said.
William Arrington described his grandfather as a “teacher, role model, and a carer.” He said he taught him about working hard and respecting yourself.
“Clint always held his head high, shoulders back, and his chest back and never backed down form anything. Clint was a carer; he built LDEC not just for him but he knew he could help people that are in need. That is what he did and he is still doing it to this day,” William Arrington said.
He added that he appreciates Clint Arrington’s dream is carrying on even after he is gone. Lonesome Dove president Steve Nelson said he could not give enough praise to the Steel Warriors for the way they continue to support Lonesome Dove, both at the nonprofit’s biggest annual fundraiser and throughout the year.

“This year they have donated an ATV, 100 tons of rock dust for the riding ring, and organized the motorcycle ride for Lonesome Dove. In total their support of our program will exceed $14,000,” Nelson said.

Their contributions go a long way toward Lonesome Dove’s annual fundraising goal of about $55,000, but the club members also give their time and hard work, which are essential, Ylimaki said.
When you are sworn into any branch of the service you become part of a brotherhood that continues throughout your life, said Sante “Sam” Reedy, recorder for the Steel Warriors. You swear to protect and defend this great nation against any and all acts of aggression and to leave no person behind.
The nation’s veterans are being left behind, and it is the brotherhood’s responsibility to do whatever can be done to ensure their survival, Reedy said.
“The event that was held this past weekend is one minor way we continue to support our brothers. The Lonesome Dove Equestrian Center does so much good for our brothers by making them feel better about themselves and (giving) them a better quality of life,” he said.
To watch the motorcycle club members arriving at Lonesome Dove as a group was almost an overwhelming experience, said Dave Emigh, LDEC board member. To witness this level of support from the motorcycle club, and the support from the community to Lonesome Dove, is both humbling and rewarding, he added.
“It was an amazing day of community, and giving of everyone’s time and talents to support our veterans. It was a festival with a great purpose for everyone who attended,” he said. “To me, it was a perfect day of celebrating with good music, good food, with a close community of hundreds of friends. We are grateful to all who came out.”
In the end, the purpose of all of Lonesome Dove’s activities are to bring attention back to the amazing veterans it serves, Emigh said.
“I wish everyone could see the faces of these men and women when they can get out of their wheelchair and up on horseback, or the confidence so many of our veterans regain by riding, or just having some fun for a few hours,” he said. “Lonesome Dove Equestrian Center is one of the most rewarding programs I have ever been associated with. I always look forward to being there at every opportunity. It is an honor to be able to have some fun with our veterans every week, and see the positive results for them.”

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