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A Music Star and Other Lofty Notables

Some of the stuff we looked into while you were reading last month’s issue

World Renown

Wiley Post, famous for his around-the-world flights in the 1930s, was born 125 years ago this month near Grand Saline, east of Dallas.

Post, credited with discovering the jet stream, twice set speed records for circling the globe. The celebrated adventurer, born November 22, 1898, perished with close friend Will Rogers in a plane crash in Alaska in 1935.


Along with her Grammy, Pamela Dawson also received $10,000 and a matching grant for DeSoto High School’s music program.

Patrick T. Fallon | Getty Images

Glorious Overtones

Pamela Dawson, choir director at DeSoto High School, south of Dallas, won a Grammy Music Educator Award in February—a lofty honor for a teacher whose students have performed at Carnegie Hall in New York City and have landed on Broadway.

“I am this lady from Detroit, Michigan, who just loves music and wants to impart that into my students,” says Dawson, who began at DeSoto in 2006.



Worth Repeating

“Happiness is having a large, loving, caring, close-knit family in another city.”
—George Burns, 20th century comedian and actor

In Favor of Heat Pumps

Heat pumps are gaining popularity in the U.S, outselling gas furnaces by a wide margin in 2022. They’re more energy-efficient, using much less electricity than traditional heating and air conditioning units.

Icon plans to implement a “live off the land” approach to its 3D construction, which prioritizes using the native materials found on the moon to create a livable and sustainable civilization.

Courtesy ICON

There Goes the Neighborhood

Texas’ strong ties to the moon are indisputable. After all, the world listened in as Neil Armstrong uttered these words during the Apollo 11 mission July 20, 1969: “Houston, Tranquility Base here. The Eagle has landed.”

Now, as NASA prepares to send astronauts back to the moon and establish a long-term presence there, the agency has contracted Austin 3D printing firm Icon to launch construction technologies for lunar landing pads, habitats and roads.

Closer to home, Icon has been creating 3D-printed houses and military barracks using gigantic robotic printers that layer the company’s proprietary concrete mix.


Rah, Rah for History

The first cheerleader was Johnny Campbell—125 years ago this month. He jumped out of the stands at the University of Minnesota on November 2, 1898, to lead the student body in cheers. Football games haven’t been the same since.

Did You Know?

Texas-born president Dwight Eisenhower was a cheerleader at West Point. And George W. Bush, former president and Texas governor, was a cheerleader in high school and at Yale University.

Wiley at 150

Wiley College, the oldest African American institute of higher education west of the Mississippi River, celebrates its 150th anniversary this year.

Wiley, established in Marshall in 1873, reached great acclaim in 1935 when English professor and poet Melvin B. Tolson coached the school’s debate team to a victory over the national champion, the University of Southern California. Read Wiley’s Sages for the full story behind Tolson’s great debaters.