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SNOOKER TIME —
Mayor Ernest Thompson chalks his cue while Masonic leader Leon Bergstrom takes a shot on the new snooker table donated to the Senior Center by the Artesia Masonic Lodge. Watching him take the shot is Tommy Hill, left, who restored the table. The table, which dates between 1895 and 1915, was originally located in a Main Street pool hall and was donated by John Shearman to the Lodge in 1931. Hill refinished the table and gave it a new felt surface. (Daily Press 1987 File Photo)

Looking back 40, 30 and 20 years ago, the following are excerpts from the Artesia Daily Press from May 21-27.

40 years ago
May 21-27, 1977

Seven Artesia High School seniors will graduate Thursday with highest honors, meaning they have maintained a grade point average of 3.83 to 4.0 on a 4.0 scale. The members of the AHS Class of 1977 earning highest honors are, in order of descending grade points, David Taylor, Pattie Watson, David Myers, Tom Copper, James Baker, Tom Casabonne and Michelle McPherson.

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As reported in the Pinon News: Freddy Wooten of the Sacramento area graduated from Texas Tech College in Lubbock Friday night of last week. Mr. and Mrs. Joe Bell and little son from Weed, attended the exercises and Robert Bell sent his pickup to Lubbock, so that his daughter, Jessica, would have it to move her things home from Lubbock Christian College for the summer vacation. Mr. and Mrs. Dalton Bell and two children, Jennifer and Jerry, and Sue Parker from Artesia, also attended the services. Freddy lived with the Dalton Bells and attended high school at Weed, so they consider him as another of their boys.

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Charlene Ryan, member of Delta Omega, received the philanthropic traveling trophy for the year at the 30th Annual Convention of the New Mexico State Council of Epsilon Sigma Alpha in El Paso.

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Vicki Troublefield was crowned “All Sports Queen” Monday night by the Artesia High School “A” Club during the annual spring all-sports dinner sponsored by the Artesia Parents and Boosters Club. Presenting the crown was Randy Hill, outgoing “A” club president and master of ceremonies for the Monday affair. AHS senior Gogie Moreno, who has lettered in basketball for three years, was selected as the Outstanding Female Athlete of the Year, and Jerry Brown, a three-year letterman in football, basketball and baseball, was selected 1977 “Mr. Bulldog” in recognition of his overall athletic accomplishment. Brown was also chosen by members of the AHS “A” Club as All-Sports King.

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Jeff Miller, the winner of the Zia Intermediate School spelling bee, participated in the 34th Annual Herald-Post Spelling Bee in El Paso, Texas. Miller placed 23rd when he misspelled the word “antibiotic;” he misheard the caller and placed an “s” on the end, making it “antibiotics.” Gwenyth Mapes of El Paso won the spelling bee with the word “simpatico.” Jeff received a trophy for winning the Zia spelling bee.

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It’s all over but the ceremony and the celebration for the 211 graduating seniors who make up the Artesia High School Class of 1977. Speeches by graduates at tonight’s commencement exercises will follow the class’ theme, “I’ve Got this Feeling — Today’s the Day.” Speakers and topics will be Diana Pounds, “Vaya Con Dios;” Patti Watson, “Today is the Day to Begin Using What We Have Learned;” Gloria Siegal, “Today is the Day Our Education Begins;” David Myers, “Today Begins the Final Test;” and David Taylor, “Today is The Day to Be Happy.”

30 years ago
May 21-27, 1987

John Ross Null has been accepted to Eastern New Mexico University, where he has received the Presidential Scholarship. The scholarship was based on ACT test scores and his class ranking. Null has maintained a 4.5 grade point average. He also has received the Friends of Western Scholarship and the Artesia Education Association Scholarship. The AEA Scholarship is awarded to a student majoring in education. He is the son of Ronnie and Jeannine Null.

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Tim Holland of Artesia earned a 4.0 grade point average for the spring semester at New Mexico State University in Las Cruces. Holland, a senior electrical engineering major, took 12 hours of classes. His overall GPA stands at 3.7. He holds the prestigious Crimson Scholar designation from the university. He is the son of Cicero and Geneva Holland of Artesia.

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Artesia High School will have a record number of varsity cheerleaders next year. They are CaraBeth Gray, Genna Simer, Vanessa Orosco, Leanna Neatherlin, Missy Lain, Rene Rascon, Tammy Brixey, Kristy Standard and Shelli Peyton. Lane and Brixey are co-captains.

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Zia Intermediate School principal Vernon Asbill, retiring teacher Loveta Lewis, and Superintendent of Schools Taylor Stephenson helped dedicate a new park area at the school recently. Park benches were installed and weeping mulberry trees planted with money raised by sucker sales during the year. The park was dedicated in Lewis’ name for her work on the project.

20 years ago
May 21-27, 1997

Seniors in the top 2 percent of the Artesia High School Class of 1997 are Susan Lewis-Palomares, Julian Carrillo, Aundrea Bullock, Stephanie Deans and Richard Flores.

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Artesia Daily Press Sports Editor Rick Hassler was presented with a plaque commending his professional sports coverage of the Artesia Public Schools over the past 20 years. Making the presentation at Tuesday’s spring sports awards night was school athletic director Cooper Henderson. Hassler, who is leaving the newspaper to move back to Texas, has been at the Daily Press since 1977.

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Seniors Jessica Sanchez and Michael Rogers were named Miss Bulldog and Mr. Bulldog at Tuesday’s Spring Sports Awards Night at Yeso Elementary School. Coaches of Artesia High School’s varsity sports chose the two as the outstanding female and male athletes for the 1996-97 school year.

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Artesia’s Kirk Robbins received High-Point Individual honors at last week’s Class 3A State Track Meet in Albuquerque.

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Like the storms that skirted Artesia Thursday, the Artesia High School Class of 1997 thundered into Bulldog Bowl with excitement and enthusiasm. The weather abated in time to allow the ceremonies to take place at the Bowl for the 220 seniors, who received diplomas during the evening ceremony.

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As reported in the Pinon News: Mrs. Oza Holcomb received a large amount of appreciation and congratulations cards from all over the state and she appreciated it very much, especially one from the First National Bank in Alamogordo and its employees and all the friends, neighbors and relative. Also the gifts from her two daughters, for the Old Timers Day Party.

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