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With the help of police officer Ray Byford, driver Larry Muncy attempts to dislodge his vehicle from the east side wall of the Pizza Hut on South First Street. Police reports state the vehicle was southbound on First Street when the accelerator stuck. Muncy said he swerved right to avoid another vehicle, turned off the ignition – which locked the steering wheel – and collided with the building. Damage to the Pizza Hut was estimated at $5,000-$6,000. (Daily Press 1986 File Photo)

With the help of police officer Ray Byford, driver Larry Muncy attempts to dislodge his vehicle from the east side wall of the Pizza Hut on South First Street. Police reports state the vehicle was southbound on First Street when the accelerator stuck. Muncy said he swerved right to avoid another vehicle, turned off the ignition – which locked the steering wheel – and collided with the building. Damage to the Pizza Hut was estimated at $5,000-$6,000. (Daily Press 1986 File Photo)

Looking back 40, 30 and 20 years ago, the following are excerpts from the Artesia Daily Press from May 15-21.

40 years ago
May 15‐21, 1976

Mrs. Glenn Caskey was selected by the Artesia Woman’s Club as Woman of the Year. Patty Crouch, Artesia Junior Woman’s Club president, presented Caskey with a corsage on behalf of the club in recognition of the honor. Caskey was named for the annual award at the May meeting of the Woman’s Club held at the Club House on Dallas Avenue.

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As reported in the Pinon News: Roy Holcomb hired Henry Danley and Jimmy Goss to move some of his cattle from his ranch on the flats south of Alamogordo to his ranch in the mountains southwest of Weed, last week. They planned to move more cattle but because of the rain and snow, he postponed the last loads. He reported one and one half inches of rain at his ranch on the flats. A roadblock had been set up at the “Steak House” about half way to Cloudcroft, known several years ago as “Wooten.” The report said there was eight inched of snowfall at Cloudcroft and they were holding traffic to clear the roads. Thursday night, another six inches of snow was reported at Cloudcroft.

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The 1976 Artesia Bulldog track team and head coach Ronny Maskew entered the record books Saturday by becoming the first track team in the history of Artesia High School to capture a state track and field crown. First-place efforts by Bill Trainor and David Thompson, combined with three seconds, three thirds, and one fifth at the state meet in Albuquerque Saturday for a firstplace total of 65 points to upend the defending champions from Silver City.

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The coaches of the 1976 Artesia Bulldog baseball team – head coach Mike Allen and assistant coach Don Osborne – were honored recently when the District 4-AAA coaches named the Artesia coaching staff to receive the Coach of the Year award. Allen and Osborne have coached the Bulldogs to a 23-4 record this year and a chance at the state title this Saturday.

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About 125 Artesia Junior Woman’s Club members, city officials, area artists, and other Artesians gathered Sunday afternoon for dedication ceremonies of the Heritage Walkway mall at 320 W. Main St. One of the highlights of the ceremony was the JWC’s presentation of a watch to Helen Mapes for having worked and supervised more than 1,100 hours on the mall mural during the last four months.

30 years ago
May 15‐21, 1986

From the opening procession to the throwing of caps, Monday evening’s Artesia High School commencement went off without a hitch. With tears of pride and joy, 184 seniors completed the annual rite of passage.

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Real estate agent Wade Saleeby of Wilson, N.C., bicycled through Artesia late last week on a cross-country trip on behalf of Missing and Exploited Children. The trip from Santa Monica, Calif., to Beaufort, N.C., is expected to take 45 days with Saleeby averaging 80 to 90 miles per day. His longest one-day journey thus far was 127 miles from Deming to Alamogordo. After leaving Artesia, Saleeby planned to travel to Seminole, Texas.

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As reported in the Pinon News: Mrs. Amanda Akers of Alamogordo has been in Weed visiting her oldest son Leonard and wife. Mrs. Akers lived many years on the place where her son is now living. She and her late husband, Jess Akers, lived, farmed, and ranched there while raising their children. They left the area in the early 1950s and moved to Alamogordo when Mr. Akers’ health became so bad they had to leave the high altitude.

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Leland Porter pulled an eight-and-a-half-pound Brown Trout from the Penasco River Monday, making it one of the bigger such fish taken from that particular stream. He said the fish measured 28 inches long and was caught with a Panther Martin lure.

20 years ago
May 15‐21, 1996

Artesia High School’s top six academic graduating seniors are Jennifer Kuykendall, Andrew Patterson, Dusty Barley, Anna Sims, Kathy Tutak and Micah Harrison. The students say their parents and continued support of teachers and the community helped them along.

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As reported in the Pinon News: The senior citizens had quite an experience Wednesday of last week on their trip to Alamogordo. The van broke down about five miles east of Cloudcroft. Mrs. Hobbs, the driver, called in for help; and they came and took the members on to the Seniors’ Center in Cloudcroft, where they had lunch. The other van was in the garage in Alamogordo for a new fender, and it was finished and ready to go, so Mrs. Hobbs and Mrs. Brady went to Alamogordo and brought it back to Cloudcroft. They all went on to Alamogordo and got their shopping done. They were late getting home, but it all turned out all right.

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Artesia High School senior Toby Heredia has been named to the South team for the 1996 Class 3A-4A North-South All-Star baseball series next month.

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Longtime fisherman Isiah Delgado displayed the 30-pound yellow catfish he caught on a trotline May 10 in the Rio Grande near Presidio, Texas. Delgado, who snared the fish quickly and said it didn’t put up much of a struggle, estimates the fish measures close to 36 inches in length.

(EDITOR’S NOTE: Looking Back is compiled each week by Daily Press Community Living Editor Teresa Lemon.)