This has been a tough week in Henderson County as far as community icons passing away.

News broke yesterday that country music legend Tony Douglas passed away. Tony is a member of the Country Music Association of Texas Hall of Fame and for the past several years has operated Papa T’s in Athens.

According to his obituary:

Following an honorable discharge in 1954, Tony took employment with Lone Star Gas Company in Athens and continued to pursue a music career on weekends. In 1956 he recorded his first record and was invited to appear as a guest on the Louisiana Hayride. After his second appearance he signed a three-year contract. In 1961 he gained national attention with his song “Shrimpin’” and his band became known as “Tony Douglas and the Shrimpers.” Another great single, “Thank You For Touching My Life” was released in 1972. For over three decades, Tony Douglas and The Shrimpers crisscrossed the nation bringing enjoyment to multitudes of people.

Athens also saw the passing of Kiwanis and Rotary Club member Paul Harrup, Jr.

Paul served on many civic committees and was an active member in the Kiwanis and Rotary Clubs. He was a Master Mason, thirty-second degree Scottish Rite and Shriner of the Tyler Court Royal Order of Jesters of the Sharon Temple Shrine. He was a member of the Salesmanship Club of Tyler and First Baptist Church of Mabank. Paul will be remembered for his terrific sense of humor and the ability to tell a joke. His office kept an open door for friends or anyone else who would engage in a hearty political discussion.

Finally, Seven Points is mourning C.D. Smith, who has long been a leader in that community. C.D. passed away in Galveston. The Monitor has a nice story about C.D. 

A memorial service for C.D. has been set for 2 p.m. Saturday.

Athens High School students are getting the chance to go to earn college credits before graduation … thanks in no small part to the Murchison Foundation. Read Part 1 of my two-part story.


The Malakoff ISD school board will meet 7 p.m. in the MISD Administration building.

The Cross Roads ISD school board will meet at 7 p.m. in the CRISD Administration Building.


State Sen. Jim Pitts filed legislation to “reaffirm and protect Texans’ second amendment rights.” 

Obituary for Maxine Wood Darby. 


The Athens Review has a story about a Mabank couple accused of trying to sell a one-month-old baby. 

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