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Azle woman killed in collision

From Enterprise Staff An Azle woman died from injuries sustained in an automobile/pedestrian accident that occurred at 10:50 a.m. Sunday in downtown Livingston. According to the accident report filed by Livingston Police Officer Chad Lilley, a 2022 Chevrolet…

Scammers responsible for billions in losses

By Chris Edwardsnews@tylercountybooster.com It could happen to anyone, and to some, that “it” in question is a terrifying proposition. Picture this: you receive a call at your workplace, and the voice on the other end is spouting off legal jargon a mile-a-minute; threatening your imminent arrest if you don’t pay X amount of money to settle some…
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Rodriguez indicted on additional charge

By Chris Edwardsnews@hccourier.com CROCKETT – A Crockett man was recently indicted on an additional charge after being arrested in 2021 on a charge of videotaping customers at a local business. Arturo Fajardo Rodriguez, 28, faces two state-jail felony charges of invasive visual recording, as well as a new charge for an incident at a private…
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Suspect sought in Tyler County

Ephriam Wilson IIIFrom Staff Reports A suspect known to occasionally reside in Polk County is being sought by the Tyler County Sheriff’s Office (TCSO) which is seeking the public’s help in apprehending the fugitive. Ephriam Otto Wilson III is wanted on two charges, according to Tyler County Sheriff Bryan Weatherford. Wilson, 41, is known to stay…
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Visiting Duchesses registration open

WOODVILLE – The 80th Annual Tyler County Dogwood Festival is only a few months away, and plans are already underway to make this one of the most memorable to date. The coronation of the 2023 Dogwood Queen and presentation of the royal court in the elaborately decorated outdoor amphitheater will be the highlight of this exciting festival! The Tyler…
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Egg prices are high, could go higher

Cartons of eggs inside a Brookshire Brothers in College Station on Jan. 23. Egg prices have climbed to all-time highs amid the avian flu pandemic. Texas A&M AgriLife photo by Michael Miller By Adam Russell Texas AgriLife Extension Egg prices continue to set all-time per-dozen price records, and a Texas A&M AgriLife Extension Service expert does…
Cartons of eggs inside a Brookshire Brothers in College Station on Jan. 23. Egg prices have climbed to all-time highs amid the avian flu pandemic. Texas A&M AgriLife photo by Michael Miller

Detectives looking for scammer

Jose Garza GonzalesOfficers are asking the public for help in nabbing a man accused of theft. Polk County Sheriff’s Office Detectives are investigating a scamming case where the suspect took advantage of an elderly resident, defrauding her of a large amount of money. Detectives identified the suspect as Jose Karim Garza-Gonzales, 33, of Kingwood,…
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Flood planning group adopts plan

Stock Photo Special to theNews-Standard After meeting to review public input and approve final plan revisions in November, the Trinity Regional Flood Planning Group has now submitted the first-ever Regional Flood Plan for the Trinity River Basin to the Texas Water Development Board. The Trinity Regional Flood Plan draws on the best available…
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Services available for people with disabilities

Special to theNews-Standard Crockett Resource Center for Independent Living’s Independent Living Services Program helps people with disabilities achieve greater independence in the home and community. Eligibility criteria for this program requires that the applicant has a significant disability who has been diagnosed by a licensed practitioner and…
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Corpus man sentenced to 30 years in prison

By Chris Edwardsnews@tylercountybooster.com CabreraWOODVILLE – A Corpus Christi man who evaded capture was sentenced to 30 years behind bars last week. Manuel Cabrera, 27, accepted a plea deal with the Tyler County District Attorney’s Office on charges of evading arrest with a vehicle; possession of a controlled substance and unlawful possession of…
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Corrigan collision kills two students

Two students have died from a vehicle accident Friday afternoon in Corrigan. The deceased were students at Stephen F. Austin University traveling on Highway 59 at approximately 1:32 p.m. A 2007 Nissan Versa was traveling southbound on Highway 59 in Corrigan, when an 18-wheeler was exiting Plant Road onto the highway. The 18-wheeler made a…
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Edgar transferred to Wainwright

By Chris Edwardsnews@hccourier.com Matthew Hoy Edgar after his arrest. Photo courtesy of Sabine County Sheriff’s OfficeLOVELADY – On Tuesday, January 10, the Texas Department of Criminal Justice (TDCJ) confirmed that Matthew Hoy Edgar, convicted for the 2020 murder of his girlfriend, Livye Lewis, is now imprisoned at the J. Dale Wainwright Unit in…
Matthew Hoy Edgar after his arrest. Photo courtesy of Sabine County Sheriff’s Office

Jackie Wilson tribute show coming to town

From Enterprise Staff “Chester Gregory: Tribute to Jackie Wilson & Friends,” the Livingston Community Concert Association’s first concert of the new year, is slated for 7:30 p.m. Jan. 28 at the Polk County Commerce Center located at 1017 U.S. Hwy. 59 Loop North in Livingston. The concert will feature Chester Gregory, an award-winning actor and…
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100th birthday

Hershel Mackey of Ace was feted with quite the celebration for his 100th birthday Wednesday. Long involved in the local community, Mackey is well-respected and greatly loved by many. He served many years as the chief of the South Polk County Volunteer Fire Department (VFD) and was also instrumental in the creation of the Ace Community Park.…
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Meth dealer sentenced to 30 years

Stock Image By Chris Edwardsnews@tylercountybooster.com ABERNATHYWOODVILLE – Last Tuesday, an Ivanhoe man was sentenced before District Judge Delinda Gibbs Walker to 30 years in prison on a drug charge. Jason James Abernathy, age 41, was handed down the sentence for a possession with intent to deliver (methamphetamine) charge. The trial and…
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Multiple arrests made in Corrigan

Three Corrigan men were arrested while law enforcement executed a warrant Monday in north Polk County. The Polk County Sheriff’s Office, along with Corrigan Police Department, executed a warrant service at a residence off of Pipeline Road in Corrigan. Deputies were advised that there were multiple subjects with active felony warrants, living at…
MultipleArrests Corrigan

Leggett man arrested for child pornography

Anthony BartunekThe Polk County Sheriff’s Office executed a residential search warrant last week pertaining to the possession of child pornography. An investigation was initiated by detectives after the Polk County Sheriff’s Office received a call in reference to a male subject in possession of child pornography, at an address off Ollie Loop in…
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A fadin’ renegade’s last stand

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doug supernaw 2FILE PHOTO Douglas Anderson Supernaw

By Chris Edwards

“Pass the word I’ve done the best I can.”

- Doug Supernaw, “Fadin’ Renegade”

Each year the Country Music Association rolls out its exceedingly ridiculous parade of high-dollar fashion and spraytans and back-slapping. There was a fuss made in the aftermath of the most recent ceremony, about how it did not include tributes to three bona-fide country legends who had passed: John Prine, Jerry Jeff Walker and Billy Joe Shaver. Two days after the show aired, another legend of country music passed right here in deep East Texas, Mr. Douglas Anderson Supernaw.

Had the long, tall Texan died prior to the broadcast, I doubt they would have included a tribute to him, either.

The CMAs, like so much of what is trotted out to the general public as representative of the “music business” is fake, and Doug Supernaw was not. That guy was as real as Death Valley summers are hot.

If you’re a casual music fan of a certain age, you might remember when Supe was a big mainstream star, a time when “Reno” and “I Don’t Call Him Daddy” were played dozens of times a day on the radio. It was a time when there was still a place for country music that sounded like, well, country music, on the top of the Billboard charts, and there was a place in the big radio markets for great songs. Although that was all coming up on 30 years ago, those records, like Red and Rio Grande and You Still Got Me hold up as amazing collections of songs to this day.

doug supernawFILE PHOTO Douglas Anderson Supernaw

To most folks for whom music is not a big part of their life (and shame on them for their poor life choices), Supernaw was relegated to the “I haven’t heard anything about him in years” status, due to his disillusionment with the music business and other factors I won’t address here, but he was always around and always relevant. To that end, it was an honor to be able to chronicle his return to full-time touring and what was supposed to be a comeback to recorded product for this magazine’s inaugural issue back in 2018.

Sadly, it was a comeback that was cut all-too short. He was on a tear, playing great shows, promoting an album that showcased re-recordings of many of his old hits, and reminding the world that he was a force to be reckoned with. However, a nagging cough and other symptoms led to an eventual diagnosis of advanced forms of cancer in early 2019. The doctors, from what I’m told, did not give him much time, but they had no idea just how tough a man Doug Supernaw really was. He beat one of the cancers, and, after some aggressive treatments and the caring prayers and meditative energies from legions of fans and friends, it looked like he had beaten it all for good.

It was not to be, though.

The last time I saw him was during the Christmas parade in downtown Livingston in 2019. He was helping out in his wife Cissy’s shop downtown, and he looked great. Seeing him greet customers as they walked in, and help out with moving furniture and other goods, made me wonder if any of the folks coming into the store knew they were in the presence of greatness.

Things seemed to be going well for him in the drawn-out debacle that was 2020, but then in September, word had gotten around via social media that his health had taken a drastic and sudden wrong turn. That news was a punch to my solar plexus, and I’m sure it took the breath of many fans upon discovery.

The first time I saw Doug Supernaw onstage was at one of the Jasper Lions Club rodeos in the early ‘90s. I’d tagged along with my mom, and was blown away, not just by the music and his performance, but by the example I saw after the show.

I stood in line with my rodeo program to be autographed and waited impatiently. I still loathe standing in lines to this day, otherwise I’m about as longsuffering as a Hindu cow. What Doug was doing, though, was making sure that he not only signed whatever the fans in line had for him, but that he got to hang out and talk to each and every one of them for a bit. All of this, in spite of the fact that the sack full of Burger King goodies sitting on the table behind him was getting cold.

Through the years I’ve heard stories about how he played benefit shows for families in need, or for causes near to his heart, when he could have played big-paying shows, instead. I’ve heard stories about how he gave of his time to help coach Little League teams or would spring into action is someone needed help with their horses. He’d do anything for anyone. He was just a regular, very real guy, albeit one with a massive amount of talent and a beautiful, beautiful soul.

Despite how much he tried to blend in, however, there was just something magnetic about Doug. He had a sort of charisma that made him stand out wherever he was. I remember a few years ago hanging out with him at a Texas Country Music Association event in Longview, and there were a good many musicians, industry folks and fans coming and going; oblivious to most everything and everyone else but him. Everyone wanted to stop and talk to him.

Another time, at a party in San Marcos, after a music festival he’d played, he was the center of attention, even though it seemed like he would’ve been content to just sit on the host’s couch and eat pizza. Everyone at the party hung on his words about getting to meet Neil Young, or stories about playing Farm Aid events and of what the Beach Boys were really like.

chris and dougMOLLIE LASALLE | ETXN The late, great Doug Supernaw with the author, backstage.

One of the stories I’ve heard that best illustrates Doug Supernaw in a nutshell comes from the Midlandbased singer/songwriter Scott Hayley, whom Supe was mentoring shortly before he entered into hospice care. Hayley recently recounted via Facebook posting of how he and Doug were on a road-trip, and Tanya Tucker’s version of the Allen Shamblin tune “The House That Built Me” came on the radio. The song, which was a big hit when it was recorded by Miranda Lambert, recounts a house full of memories once occupied by the narrator, who returns as an adult to the house she grew up in.

When it hit radio with Lambert’s rendition, it was at a time that Supernaw wasn’t likely paying much attention to pop culture or what was on the radio. Hayley said that he looked over at his friend, who was riding shotgun, and the beauty of the song struck him to the point of bringing him to tears. “It’s so beautiful,” is what he said of the song.

That story spoke volumes to me about what kind of a guy Doug was. He was, on the surface, a fun-loving fellow who was the life of the party, and someone who loved to laugh (and make others laugh) but he was also a guy with an enormous amount of talent and a truly beautiful soul.

The wave of mainstream popularity that Supernaw enjoyed in the early 1990s may have been his own slice of 15 minutes of fame, but he was important to many people far beyond the short, fickle memories and attention spans of gauche mainstream culture. All of that CMA Awards glitz and readymade Instagram-posting “outlaw” stuff is, again, utterly fake and Doug Supernaw was not.

His success and legacy prove that every now and again the good guys finish first and come out on top, and lately, that same concept holds true with the popularity of real artists like Jason Isbell, Tyler Childers and Chris Stapleton making legit art.

Their popularity probably seems like an aberration to those whose image of country music is defined by Jason Aldean and rapped verses about tractors and beer over computer-generated drumbeats. I’m sure that if Doug Supernaw were just starting out today, he would seem like an outlier, confined to what mainstream radio looks at as the ghetto of “Americana” or “traditional country.” But then again, the real music and real people making that music are still out there. It just requires more effort to find them than most folks are willing to commit.

To many around Livingston, no doubt, he was just Doug, a magnetic and charming fellow who could be seen around town just enjoying life and the company of friends and his lovely wife Cissy.

If such a thing as an angel on earth exists, it is his widow. Supposedly, in the mid-90’s when Doug was hanging out in the area, after a gig, he spotted her and said something to the effect of one day he’d return and marry her. Well, he must’ve had a bit of Nostradamus in him, because that’s what happened, and he not only found the love of his life, but a renewed vitality and commitment to his artform.

God bless Doug Supernaw, a most incredible artist and an even better human being.

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