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Gimme Shelter

The first time I attended New Hope Church in Manvel, my lip curled so hard it almost closed off one of my nostrils. The problem was cup holders. The seats had them. Instead of wooden pews, the…
PUBLISHED: July 8, 2014
LENGTH: 14 minutes (3546 words)

State of Denial

In 2012, my wife, Kate, and I traveled more than 3,400 miles from Austin and back to marry legally in New York City. Seven years earlier, in November 2005, our fellow Texas voters had approved…
PUBLISHED: July 1, 2014
LENGTH: 11 minutes (2993 words)

Aliens Without Borders: Exploring South Texas' Intergalactic Attractions

It is cold, dark and silent in downtown Del Rio, even on a Friday night. The former Guarantee department store sits vacant on Main Street, as it has for decades. The hair salons that now occupy the…
PUBLISHED: June 11, 2014
LENGTH: 14 minutes (3733 words)

Childhood Lost

On a warm day in March 2009, with her face on “Wanted” posters around town and Nacogdoches County Sheriff’s deputies hunting for her, Sarah Brian put some pretzels in a bag,…
PUBLISHED: May 6, 2014
LENGTH: 24 minutes (6214 words)

Into the Pines: Jeffrey Holliman's Strange East Texas Survival Tale

Taz and Kiki knew that trouble was coming from the woods. The two guard dogs—the first a puggle, the other what her owner calls a “chachaweenie”—were small and easily…
PUBLISHED: Feb. 5, 2014
LENGTH: 24 minutes (6235 words)

We Are Disposable

Alan Pogue Rosa Moreno with her children. It was Saturday night, and, as usual, Rosa Moreno was getting ready to work the night shift at the factory. On this night, Feb. 19, 2011, she couldn’t…
PUBLISHED: Dec. 4, 2013
LENGTH: 21 minutes (5470 words)

Searching for Souls in Wells, Texas

“I never took eternity seriously again until we moved down to Wells, Texas.” —Carolyn Wiegand, 11-year-old member of the Church of Wells Gertrude Hearne’s front porch…
PUBLISHED: Nov. 26, 2013
LENGTH: 11 minutes (2920 words)

The Recanters: What Happens When Child Abuse Claims Come Undone?

One morning in late 1986, Beverly Troupe approached her mother and said she felt a burning sensation when she urinated. This wasn’t the first time. LaVern Troupe had taken her 8-year-old…
LENGTH: 21 minutes (5473 words)

Waste Land: Frio County Struggles with Fracking’s Leftovers

On a gravel road in rural Frio County, sheriff’s deputies are doing something they never thought they would—enforcing state environmental laws in the oilpatch. The truck drivers they…
LENGTH: 6 minutes (1565 words)