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For Electric Cooperative Members

A Special Day for Lineworkers and Willie

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

Rising Stars

We salute a select group of Texas co-op employees this Lineworker Appreciation Day, April 10. Apprentices from Pedernales Electric Cooperative in Johnson City dominated at two competitions in 2022 that spotlighted and promoted lineworker skills and safe work practices.

PEC’s Phillip Stapp finished first among 96 apprentices at the Texas Lineman’s Rodeo in July, claiming the top prize for the co-op for the fourth consecutive rodeo. Co-workers Crispen Davis placed third and Cole Compton fifth. Then, at the International Lineman’s Rodeo in October in Kansas, PEC’s Zackery Gough beat out 365 competitors to claim first place. Davis was close behind in second place, and Stapp was 14th.


Worth Repeating

“The hardest thing in the world to understand is income taxes.”
—Albert Einstein


Country music icon Willie Nelson was born April 29, 1933, in Abbott, a spot on the map 24 miles north of Waco. He lives in the Hill Country outside of Austin.

Randy Miramontez |

Funny How Time Slips Away

Willie Nelson, the musical genius from the Hill Country who has won 10 Grammys, written more than 2,500 songs and turned plenty of others’ tunes into hits of his own, turns 90 on April 29.

Here are the favorite songs of TCP’s writers and editors:

Chris Burrows: City of New Orleans
Alex Dal Santo: On the Road Again
Travis Hill: Hello Walls
Jessica Ridge: Pancho and Lefty
Tom Widlowski: Seven Spanish Angels


Empanadas: Chiyacat | Rodriguez: Courtesy Jason David Page

Good Stuff

April 8 is National Empanada Day. Writer Vianney Rodriguez shared that empanadas were among her favorite types of pan dulce in Sweet Memories, from December 2020.


Chris Magallanes, above, Mark Montemayor and Ernie Morales barbecued nonstop to break a world record that had been held by a trio from Italy.

Wyatt McSpadden

Holy Smokes!

Seems only fitting that the world’s longest barbecue marathon took place in Texas.

Pitmasters from Panther City BBQ in Fort Worth grilled for 40 hours, 49 minutes and 17 seconds July 13–15, 2022, to set the record. Chris Magallanes and two others cooked 450 pounds of hamburgers, 300 pounds each of tablitas (beef short ribs) and fajitas, and 100 pounds each of onions and peppers.

The food was donated to the community, including to first responders and a hospital.


Can You Hear Me Now?

The first mobile phone call was made 50 years ago this month. From a New York street, Motorola engineer Martin Cooper called his rival at Bell Laboratories on April 3, 1973—to tell him he was speaking via a mobile phone.